Monday, June 30, 2008


As promised, here is a picture of our fancy-schmancy toes. (Katie's are the little ones. :))

I had a nice time at my pedicure, and Katie had a nice time while I painted hers later that day. Of course she had to pick red.

We had a nice morning with some of Katie's preschool friends. A few of us gathered at a local park for a morning of play and then a picnic lunch. It was PERFECT weather for being outside.

The kids are getting their pictures take on Wednesday. This will be our first attempt with professional photography. We have been just taking the pictures ourselves up to now. Do I consider myself a bad mother because I haven't done the traditional 3 month, 6 month, 9 month, 1 year pictures? Wait....lemmie go take the knives away from the children.....what was the question again?

Katie got to go shopping last week and spend a few dollars of her birthday $ along with birthday bucks from the toy store. This is what she BEGGED for. :) Note the shorter hair!!

And because Will is never more than a few steps behind...

Saturday, June 28, 2008

My weekend

I am taking advantage of John this weekend.

So far I had a haircut this morning, which turned into a mini shopping trip for myself. I got something to wear for an upcoming wedding next weekend, and found some KILLER deals at Old Navy. ($1 flip flops!) Katie has never had flip flops before, and it has been awhile for me too...but I figured for $1 we would give them a try.
Tomorrow I have an appointment to use up a gift card John gave me last winter. I am getting a 30 minute massage and a pedicure. I've never had a pedicure before...but I hear good things. I figure it will go quite nicely with the new flip flops. :)

Now during all this pampering time, John is at home alone with the kids. :)

Monday, June 23, 2008

Happy Birthday Grandma Lyla!

Happy Birthday today to Grandma Lyla! She is XX years old. :) Have a wonderful day.

We got back last night around 8:30pm. The kids went to bed relatively well and we were able to unpack before it got too late so that was good. Today we are just playing catch up with laundry and the kids are getting used to playing by themselves again. :) I've decided I'm really going to work on getting Will to sleep a little more at night. (Like I haven't been trying for the last 6 months, I guess.) Last night he was up at 11:45, 1:15, 2:30...then not again til 5, at which point I just let him yell and John got him back to sleep. At 6:45 he was awake and ready to be up, even though I tried to get him to lay in the big bed.
Hopefully that was just a bad night due to traveling, but somehow I doubt it. We'll see.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Summer activities

Yesterday turned out to be VERY nice. It got above 80 again....only the third time this year. We are excited to have some warm weather. Katie started soccer camp. It runs for about 5 weeks - one afternoon a week for about 45 minutes. She had a blast! Last year when she would run with a group of kids she was ALWAYS last. :) This year she wasn't first, but wasn't last. Nice to see her in the middle. There was great structure to the little class and Katie learned some new tricks. She also got a new soccer ball.

Soccer star!

Will wanted in the action too. It was hard keeping him in one place. He saw those soccer balls and wanted to go get one!

We were HOT after soccer so we found the baby pool and threw some water in it. Will was WAY excited. Katie kept getting angry because he was splashing her. We finally had to get out because Will kept leaning over and laying face first in the water. :) I think he was trying to 'drink' it.

And is the birdhouse that Katie finished this weekend. We have yet to hang it, but it will get hung. She did a very good job and was not at all messy!

My slightly green thumb

Our garden is really taking off. Everything seems to be growing very well - so far. John has done 90% of the weeding so far, but I vow to help when I can. :) I thought I would include some pictures today of the garden to let you see how it's coming.

One side of the garden is growing strawberries and some type of lettuce. (Here from the previous owner.) In the far corner I planted some wildflower seeds to finish off the space.

These are the rows of carrots, peas and beans. There is also a tomato plant and a green pepper plant.
And because corn is priced so high, we thought we would add that to our crop mix too. :) I have two whole stalks starting to grow. :)

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Holy Cow - Katie is 4!

Happy Birthday to Katie! She woke up this morning wanting to hear the story of her birth again - which we tell at least one a week since Will has been born. Humor me as I re-tell it in blog form. :)
It was Wednesday, June 16th. I had just come home after working a full day at the investment office. John and I were set to go grocery shopping. I had an appointment on Thursday, June 17th and the midwives were thinking about trying some things to move labor along. I had been 3 cm dilated for about a week. I wanted to stock up on groceries so that we would have plenty to eat in the house for the next couple of weeks, and I didn't think I could do it myself. We got home late so we cooked a frozen pizza, watched some tv, and went to bed.

I woke up around 1:45 am with some odd pains in my side. I rolled over and went back to sleep. 10 minutes later, it happened again. I got up, went to the bathroom, and proceeded to drink 2 big glasses of water and lay on my left side. (This is what they always tell you to do if you are having pains. It could be a result of dehydration.) They continued to come every 8-10 minutes. At about 2:30 am I woke up John on the couch and told him I was having some weird pains. "You don't have to get up, I just wanted to let you know." He was going to just go back to sleep, but then he heard me breathing through a contraction and got up. Around 3:30 am I decided to call the hospital. My contractions had started coming every 5 minutes and I was getting anxious. My fear was that we would go to the hospital and they would send us home because this wasn't the real thing. The nurse that I spoke to told me to take a warm shower which may help the pain. If I wanted to come get checked out later in the morning, I could. So I went ahead and got in the shower around 3:45. The water did help, but the contractions were coming so hard now it was difficult to move. I dreaded getting out and getting dressed, but somehow managed to do it. By now it was around 4:30 or so and after pacing around a bit, I remember making the announcement "I have to get to the hospital." John grabbed the bag, some odds and ends, and I made my way to the car. We didn't have a far drive and got to hospital around 4:50 am or so. In the car ride, something had changed. Ohhh boy, it hurt now. I held John's hand and in my head I was chanting "It'll be over soon, It'll be over soon..." over and over again. Later, John told me that he finally realized that this was it - we were having a baby right now. This was the real thing. On the radio played the song "Come to Papa" by Bob Seger.

When we got to the hospital, the doors were locked because it was so early. We had to buzz someone to let us in. I was screaming "Let me the #%@! in!" John calmly said "My wife is in labor." The doors opened and we went to the admissions desk. Now I had already pre-registered 2 weeks before, but for some ungodly reason they still make you check in. This poor little Asian woman was trying her best to get my info up as I yelled at her to HURRY THE HELL UP!
"Do you want a wheelchair honey?"
"Oh, well it's quite a ways to walk...."
After standing there about 10 minutes or so she wheeled me up to labor and delivery, and John went to park the car. I'd had 2 contractions on the ride up to the L&D floor, so when we got there all she could say was "She needs a labor room right away - no monitoring." I tried to explain to the nurses I had called earlier, but didn't need to. The nurse I talked to said "I'm SO sorry I told you to take a shower! Look, your hair is still wet!" I got into the gown (after I asked if I had to take off my underwear. "Gee, no hon, we're gonna pull this baby out of your nose." I was a little out of it) and they told me I was 8 cm dilated. I got out of bed and yelled for some painkillers. They were able to get an IV in, but before they could get it hooked up, I was complete. We'd been at the hospital just about 30 minutes and out came the baby. John said "It's a girl," and the rest is 4 years of wonderful memories. I'm so glad we were able to stay at home for so long during the labor because it helped me get through labor naturally and drug free - there's no other way I would have been able to do it.
Thank you Katie for being our first child, and for putting up with us for 4 years.

Katie and Pop

Baby Katie with cousin Sarah.

Either Katie was little or we had a huge remote. I think it was a little of both.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Happy Father's Day!

First of all, I wanted to take a moment to wish all the Dads out there, especially mine, a HAPPY FATHER'S DAY! Thank you for all that you have done and continue to do for us!

Last night we had a mini-birthday party for Katie. Her actual birthday is on Tuesday, but we decided to celebrate it early. We invited our friends, Jamie, Joe, and their son, Noah over and grilled out. Katie was excited to show off her presents and share her picnic table with Noah.

Here is Katie all decked out in her pads. She got a scooter, and is getting pretty good at it. No tears...yet. John backed the cars out of the garage and she likes riding it there.

Now I will toot my own horn - I decided to make Katie a cake myself. I made a double layer vanilla cake with fresh strawberries layered inside. Next time I will use even MORE strawberries (they were very good). Katie picked out the fish candies (on the side) and I decorated the rest. I think I have been watching too much Ace of Cakes on the Food Channel. :)

Katie and Noah sat VERY nicely at the little table to eat. Noah enjoyed his FIRST hot dog. :)

We ate our cake outside after supper. Well - the adults ate their cake...the kids decided that playing was more important. Here's Katie and Noah taking a milk break.

On Sunday, John helped Katie put together a bird house she got for her birthday. She wanted to paint it very badly. :) It turned out beautiful and will make some bird a very good house. It was a nice Father's Day activity for them to do. Katie and Will also made John a shirt for Father's Day that says "#1 Pop". They put their hand prints on it and Katie painted some pictures on it. :) Happy Father's Day!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Happy Birthday Grandma Mary!

Just wanted to take a moment to say Happy Birthday Grandma Mary! Lots of June birthdays! Katie says she hopes you got her card. :)

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Extreme Weather

I think we can all say that we are sick of the extreme weather we have been seeing lately. The heat wave out east, the floods in the Midwest, ick. Luckily, here in MN, we have been spared somewhat from the extremes. The only thing we have to put up with is windy, cool days. Today has been pretty good - have we gotten outside to enjoy it? Of course not. :)

(Oooh, yummy, a Schwan's truck just went by.)

Katie had a camp day yesterday at My Gym. That is her gym class place that she went to until we started preschool. All of the teachers remembered her, but it took a little coaxing to get her to go play and she wanted me to stay and watch for a couple minutes. Will wanted to just get down and go play! He was too little to play yesterday, but maybe we'll take him in a couple weeks. Katie starts soccer next week, and that runs for about 5-6 weeks; an hour every Tuesday.

Will turns 11 months tomorrow. (I KNOW! Where has the time gone?) He has turned into quite the little boy. It's really fun to watch the two kids and how DIFFERENT they are.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Be warned...

This morning I spent some of my time making cookies. I made oatmeal raisin cookies, and they are very yummy. But there are some secret ingredients. I added pureed bananas and pureed zucchini. You can smell and kind of taste the bananas, just because that's such a strong smell and taste, but nevertheless, the cookies are VERY good. I'm telling you, even Uncle Jim would like these! I got the book Deceptively Delicious by Jessica Seinfeld. She published all these very basic recipes, with pureed vegetables and fruits. So while the cookies were baking, I went ahead and steamed and pureed a bunch of carrots, zucchini, and also baked a butternut squash to puree.

Tonight we are going to have chicken quesadillas....with squash. Obviously John will eat pretty much any vegetable put in front of him, but Katie and I need a little coaxing. :) Hopefully this will help all of us eat a little better. Just think of the fiber in those cookies! Oatmeal, raisins, bananas, zucchini! I should have added some flax seed meal to it too, but that will wait til next time. Ground flax seeds are another one of my new additives lately. They have some protein, fiber, omega 3 fats and a couple tablespoons can be tossed into just about anything - pasta sauces, soups, and casseroles or baked dishes, etc.

So consider yourself warned...if you eat my food you may be getting more than you think you are. (Will ate the pureed zucchini for lunch and it was a big hit. :)) I am very excited to try some of the recipes like banana bread with cauliflour, pancakes with sweet potatoes, chicken nuggets with broccoli, angel food cupcakes with yellow squash, carrot frosting, etc. She suggests thinking past the recipies too and adding purees to boxed dinners. Anything to add some vitamins to our diet.

Also on the baking front I am planning on picking some rhubarb as soon as the wind dies down and we can get outside. :) We have 3 rhubarb plants in our yard and I want to make Carol's rhubarb cake. (So, I'll need the recipe Denise!)

Will and Katie had been 'fighting' over her trycicle one day so I brought up Katie's old push bike that she got a few years back. Will supprised us by sitting on it and pushing right off with his feet. He does really well on it!

The kids' birthdays are coming up in a few weeks and I had been looking for a picnic table for them. It feels like I have been looking FOREVER! I tried to catch a few on Craigslist, but they always got sold out from underneath me. So I broke down and ordered one. They were cheapest if I ordered directly from Little Tikes, so I did and it was delivered today. It's much too windy and nasty to spend any time on it outside, so for now it's inside. Will does pretty well sitting at it too - he hasn't fallen off yet anyway.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Happy Belated Birthday Sarah!

So yesterday was Sarah's 15th birthday, and I meant to post it, but the day slipped away! I will take a moment now to embarrass her and post a HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! (The public embarrassment is really what counts. :)) We are glad to have her back safe and sound from her trip to New York.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

What a weekend...

We had quite a weekend! It was BEAUTIFUL weather, yesterday was mid 70's and sunny, today was lower 80's and sunny. There was a chance for storms yesterday so we worked at home. John and I mowed the lawn, did some trimming on the bushes and shrubs, weeded the garden, treated the weeds, and caught up on laundry - all while running after 2 kids. :) I must say I'm not as sore as I thought I would be, but still sore. I happened to get a blister from mowing lawn and when I told John that his poor delicate flower of a wife got a blister he told me I'd have to mow more often so that doesn't happen again. :)

Today we made plans to visit Como Zoo in Minneapolis. It's a very nice zoo and conservatory that happens to be free. Katie and Will saw a zebra, giraffes, penguins, sea lions, tigers, lions, gorillas, monkeys, snakes, tarantulas, leopards, and a bunch that I just can't remember right now. They had WAY more animals than I thought they would have for a free zoo.

To get into the zoo part you have to walk through the amusement park area too, so Katie saw that they had all kinds of rides as well. After lunch we let her go on a few rides. She rode on the train, did the tea cups with John, and a fire truck ride with me. Then all 4 of us went on the carousel. It was quite the day. :)

After we left Como we drove down to the 35W bridge to see how that was coming. We walked on the pedestrian bridge that runs near there. I tried to take pictures, but they didn't really turn out very well. It was pretty massive, and they have made a lot of progress on the rebuilding which is set to be done around Christmas time.

John and Katie enjoying the tea cups.

Katie taking in the mighty Mississippi from the pedestrian bridge.

Hand in hand...

After the zoo, Will was not up for ANYTHING else. :) He was pretty excited when he saw most of the animals. The leopard came right up to the window and Will pointed, grunted and yelled. He did that for the monkeys too. It was pretty cute.