Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Snow, Glorious Sow


I have to admit, I love it when it snows. No, let me rephrase that...I love it when everyone I love is home, we have plenty of food, electricity is working and it snows. I don't enjoy it so much when Sean is out driving on it or the electricity is out. Luckily the hubby is home all week with us which allowed me to plunk Miss Greta in his arms and take Wesley out to enjoy the snow.

Last year, for some reason, we never bundled Wesley up and let him go tromp around in the snow. It might have been because I never bought snow boots last year, or maybe it was because he was just too small. Oh well, this year snow seems to be a winner. It took me nearly 10 minutes to wrangle the kid into his two layers of pants, sweatshirt, winter coat, socks, snow boots, hat and gloves but I think it was worth it.

I had to show him how to make snow balls and after that nothing was safe. He was flinging snow everywhere. He wanted to go play in his sand box and I had to show him that it was frozen solid. Even in the dead of winter he wants to play in that dang thing. When his little cheeks turned red I decided it was time to go in and I literally had to drag him inside.



Monday, December 28, 2009

Natural Selection

Six years ago about this time of the year, I would find myself standing at the picture window at our previous house gazing intently out of the window. You see we used to live in a subdivision outside of town and behind our house was a small man-made pond. Every year it would freeze over and the kids of the neighborhood would go play on it. This particular memory is of three boys all around 12 years of age out in the middle of the pond jumping up and down as hard as they could. I stood at the window watching them and wondering if today was the day someone would fall through the ice. There would always be a warm enough day where it would be downright dangerous to be out on that ice. I remember that day hearing the loud crack of ice and going out and yelling at those boys to get off the ice because it wasn't safe. I always wondered where these kids parents where and how they couldn't have taught them that this behavior wasn't acceptable.

Fast forward to yesterday. We moved out of that subdivision and out into the country. Of course we still have a pond out behind our house. It is owned by the man who owns the twenty acres behind us. I'm standing at the changing table and look out the window to see this man driving his four wheeler around the iced over pond. He's sliding it this way and that way, making it glide over the ice. I found myself just standing there with my jaw hanging open. It was like watching a train wreck, you just couldn't look away for you knew at that precise moment was when he and his 600 pound four wheeler would go crashing through the ice. This wouldn't have been memorable to me other than the fact that it was 31 degrees out and the snow was melting off of the roof and dripping in front of the window as I watched him.

He made it without falling through the ice but I think we found out who the parents to those 12 year old boys back in the subdivision are.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Thanks Granny!

The hats are awesome! We have already worn them multiple times. Wesley loves his hat and mittens. You are so talented! Wish we were there!

Month Three


I'm nearly a week late with this but I figure better late than never. Little Miss Greta turned three months old last Monday, boy is the time flying! Here are a few things that have happened this month:

-She's smiling up a storm....loves to melt everyone with her smile.
-Has started to focus on a stuffed bear by her changing table and will reach out to grab it while getting changed.
-We think she's starting to laugh although it's a strange high pitched noise that resembles nothing of a laugh.
-Just graduated into size 2 diapers.
-Weighs in at 13.5 pounds on the home baby scale
-Sleeping habits have reverted...only sleeping 2.5 to 3 hours between feedings. Me so sleepy.
-Still swaddled at night...sleeps even worse if unswaddled (is that even possible?)
-Starting to think she might be a high maintenance baby.
-But that's ok, we adore her just the way she is.

Thanks Aunt Stacy for the simply adorable hand-me-downs

Saturday, December 26, 2009

White Christmas

We woke up Christmas morning to a nice blanket of snow on the ground. There is just something magical about a white Christmas. The weather man said that there have only been 13 white Christmas's since they started keeping track in 1888. We average one every 10 years.

We had a really nice relaxing day. We woke up, loaded all the presents into the van and headed over to my folks house which is about five miles away. The snow plows had cleared the roads mostly which is great because some of the snow drifts were several feet high. One part of the dirt road had piles along each side that were as tall as the van. It was impressive.

We got several pictures of the grandchildren in front of the tree. Only two turned out half way presentable with the babies not screaming. Wesley looks like such a little man in his Christmas shirt and sweater vest.




I had fun shopping for the kids dress clothes on eBay. Greta's dress was a whopping 3.99 and Wesley's shirt and vest was .99 cents. Gotta love eBay!

Wesley and Greta made out like bandits. Wesley will have new toys to keep him busy for many months, hopefully long enough to get him through the long cold indoor months coming up.




The family hanging out opening presents:








I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas wherever you are!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Introductions

My sister and her family came down today for Christmas and I got to meet my new nephew for the first time! He's almost seven weeks old and too adorable. I just wanted to share some photos since Christmas is tomorrow and I'm sure to have a lot of photos to post. Here is wee little Emery snoozing.


Betsy and I with our babes. Don't they look so thrilled?


The men on Baby duty.


Grandpa and Emery


Wesley loving his Mega Blocks.


Greta and I chillin on the couch.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Expectations

Do you know what the difference between baby number one and baby number two is? With the first baby you anxiously await each month when they turn another month old. You know exactly how many weeks old they are at any moment, not needing to go to the calendar to look. You might might even count down to that one month birthday every month, looking forward to capturing a picture at each month milestone. Baby number two is lucky if you can remember how many months old they are (give or take a couple of months). Poor Greta turned three months old on Monday and I completely overlooked it. Usually we at least take a photo for her First Year frame but I even forgot that.

Poor kid.

I do find myself enjoying baby number two more than I did the first. I'm consistently in a good mood, which is amazing with the complete lack of sleep I'm getting. With the second baby I just have no expectations. No expectations to get a single thing done in the day. I find that if I just wake up and plan on playing with Wesley and feeding Greta all day I don't get disappointed when nothing gets done. Keep the expectations low I say. And when it comes down to it, this is my job. To keep two little people happy all day, go to sleep and do it again the next day. If dishes and laundry don't get done who cares. If I don't get any sculpting done oh well, we're getting by just fine without my income. I was pretty down in the dumps when Wesley was a wee baby because I aimed too high with what I thought I needed to achieve in a day. I remember painting sculptures while breastfeeding him (still have the paint spots on the boppy) and being miserable. It's nice to just breath, slow down and enjoy these babies while they are babies.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

The Night Owl

I have a strange new routine that I've been doing for about a month now. Every other Friday night I get Wesley and Greta to sleep, say goodnight to Sean and drive into town to do my grocery shopping. It's usually around 10:30 when I leave and I get home around 1 am. And I love it! I have tried every possible way to be able to get into town to do the weekly food shopping: take Greta while leaving Wesley with Sean (she screams in the front pack and car seat) or leave Greta at home with Sean on the weekends (I have to hurry since she's used to eating every two hours). The only way that I don't end up inconveniencing anyone (except myself) is to do it once the whole house is sleeping. It has it's perks: I don't have to hurry and can take my time, the stores are all but empty, no lines, and I don't have to drag babies out into the cold. There are a few down sides. The people that come out to shop at midnight are some interesting people to say it delicately. If you're into people watching, there isn't much better a venue than Wal-Mart at 1 am. Of course I am pretty tired after doing this but I can sleep in with Greta on the weekends when Sean is home to tend to Wesley in the mornings. It's been working out pretty good and I intend to keep doing it. Just thought I'd share how bizarre my routine has become lately.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Birthday Wishes and Balls of Cake

First and foremost lets all wish my good pal Jessica a Happy Birthday. I know it's not politically correct to mention how old she is so I'll just say she's older than 30 and younger than 32. He he he. Happy Birthday Dude! Thus brings us to the second part of this entry.
I feel I must share with you all a recipe that I keep running across. They are called Cake Balls. I don't feel that is an appropriate name so I shall call them "Balls of Cake That Will Destroy Any Chance I Might Have of Loosing the Remaining Baby Weight". But since that is too long of a name I will just call them Great Balls of Cake! I have run across this recipe three times now in about two weeks and finally decided to cave in and make them. Jessica's birthday became a great excuse. After all these little things are not something you want just lying around your house. Tis always better to unload high calorie high fat sweets on good friends. :)

Anyways, on to the recipe. First you go buy a regular cake mix. Any old cake mix, any flavor you desire. Also pick up a tub of frosting. Again, any flavor you'd like. Be creative! I'm using a double fudge cake and vanilla frosting.



Prepare the cake as directed on the box and allow to cool completely.



Next, take a big bowl and crumble the entire cake into it.



Take the tub of frosting and mix it all into the bowl of crumbled cake. Work it through until it's the consistency of paste.



Line a cookie sheet with wax paper (or foil if you're like me and ran out of wax paper). I used a cookie scoop to scoop out perfectly measured balls, you could also use a tablespoon and roll them into balls. Put the balls on the lined cookie sheet and pop them into the freezer for at least an hour.



The recipe I saw said to use Candy melts for this next part but since I need to make this milk free for Jessica's little boy I am using Bakers Semi-sweet baking chocolate squares (milk free). Just melt the chocolate in a double boiler or on low on the stove. Dip the frozen balls into the chocolate and place on a wax paper lined cookie sheet to cool. To add some flare, you can dip them in sprinkles before they cool.



When you are done you have little balls of heaven (boy that sounded wrong). You can package them up and distribute them for the Holidays or just plow into them. The possibilities are endless as to how many different ways you can make them little gems. I'm already thinking a strawberry cake with white icing dipped in white almond bark would be tasty....Mmmm. Enjoy!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Holiday Season

Can you believe that Christmas is a week from Friday? Time just seems to fly by faster and faster as I get older. I'm happy to say that I have 99% of my Christmas shopping finished and most of it is even wrapped. Greta has been passing out in her swing for her afternoon nap and letting me get the wrapping done. It's nice to be done and not feel the stress of the Holidays anymore. We would normally be visiting Sean's folks in New Mexico this Christmas but we made an unfortunate executive decision last month not to make the long trek down there with a newborn. We are really going to miss seeing everyone this year, it's one of the high points of the year for us. We just can't seem to wrap our heads around the idea of a three month old and a two year old in a minivan for 17 hours each way. It's a 14 hour drive and we'd have to stop every two hours to breastfeed for 20 minutes. I also don't like the idea of her little body sitting in a car seat that long. Tiny little respiratory systems aren't made for that. We'll miss you all this year and will be sad not to be there, I'm already sad. We wish we lived closer!

Wesley has been keeping busy lately. He is absolutely in love with the Christmas tree. He likes to find boxes and pluck specific ornaments off of the tree, fill up his box and carry it around for the next hour. Then when he tires of that he will go put the ornaments back on the tree and pluck off a whole new batch. He'll keep himself entertained for hours. We went over to my folks house last weekend and he got to help decorate their Christmas tree. He was in hog heaven as my Mom has about three times as many ornaments on her tree as I do.

He's also been doing some craft projects centered around the Holiday season. I bought some ornaments for him to paint, this was his first time to paint and he really did a nice job. I was expecting paint everywhere but he kept it all on the ornament. I was impressed. Here are the wee little artists painting ornaments:



Wesley took an interest in the stockings so I finally just took them down and gave them to him. He seems to think they are real stockings and has taken to wearing them on his feet. I guess they are stockings after all.



Here is a picture of Mister Chocolate Face himself. Mmmmm chocolate covered graham crackers. It's a rough life I tell ya.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Personal Picks

Newest favorite items.


Eclipse Drapes:
I've mentioned these before but I'm just in love with these drapes. They are room darkening drapes that save on energy costs. We have sliding glass doors all along one wall of our bedroom and once that sun comes up it is blindingly bright in the room. Even with normal drapes it is still so bright. I bought these and Greta and I now both sleep in in the mornings. They are cheap ($25 a panel) and available at Wally World. One of the best purchases I've made this year.


Petunia Pickle Bottom Diaper Bag:
Ok, first off I'm not really into the whole designer diaper bags but I do like quality. I saw these diaper bags and love the fabric and functionality but wasn't about to pay retail (they run $169 new). I got on eBay and bought one in practically brand new condition (it looks new to me) for $31. I wasn't prepared for how large it is, but quickly adapted to using it and now can carry any and everything needed for two kids. Merry Christmas to me!


Baby Legs:
There isn't anything much cuter than these little baby leg warmers. It's easier than putting pants on a baby, plus I've never thought that pants on a baby look quite right.....they don't have a waist. Anyways, these are fun.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Say Cheese

Before Greta was born people told me that the second child won't get photographed nearly as much as the firstborn. Not true! This poor little lady has a camera in her face, I'd say, almost more than Wesley did at this age. I think the difference is I now know how fast they grow so I must click, click, click those photographs to cherish each little moment. Here are a few from the past couple of days.

Smiley girl


Such a sweet big brother....


....giving her little feet a kiss


Santa baby

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Nipples

Last night while I was changing Wesley into his footed pajamas he looked down and pointed to his nipple and asked "What's this?"

I replied "That's your nipple".

Wes: "Do you have nipples?"

Me: "Yes, that's what I feed Sissy with."

Wes: "Daddy has nipples, Mommy has nipples, Chance has nipples, Wesley has nipples....
WE ALL GOTS SOME NIPPLES!! YEAH!"

Little kids are just the funniest things ever.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

A giant rambling post

Winter is upon us. The high for tomorrow is 18 degrees. 18! I just got back inside from my morning trek out to feed the horses and goat. This is always a treat when the weather is below freezing. Keeping water available for two little horses has become loads easier since I installed the stock tank heater. I used to have to haul buckets of water out there from the house. I haven't had to do that in awhile but found myself doing it this morning. Frozen hoses mean there is no way to get fresh water out there when the tank gets low. Oh well, I suppose it's a decent work out.

On that note I've been working out trying to get this baby weight off for about a month now and I must admit that this tummy blubber is stubborn! You know, the fun stomach fat that hangs over the pants in the front? Yuck! I know, I know it's only been two months since I had Greta but it doesn't seem to be going anywhere. The weight is slowly going down, I've got 14 pounds to loose before getting back to my pre pregnancy weight. I'm just anxious to get back down there so that I have clothes to wear again. My wardrobe is calling to me and I can't button any of the pants. Uggg. Nine months on, nine months off right? I'm too impatient for that motto. Dieting while breastfeeding can be a tricky thing, you don't want to mess with that valuable milk supply. My solution is to try a high protein, low sugar meal plan (see I didn't say diet) and try and boost the old metabolism. It's a horrible time of the year to try this, what with it being the Holidays and all, but the fat needs to go bye bye. It's worth a try!

I'm happy to say that the large majority of my Christmas shopping is finished and I'm just waiting for it all to be delivered. For someone with a tiny baby and a two year old, the internet is a Godsend. There is no way I'm hauling those babies all over town to shop so Amazon and eBay have been my shopping sources. I did get out last weekend to pick up gift certificates and took Greta with me. It was downright crazy. Traffic jams in the parking lots, long lines in the stores, people hacking up a lung right behind ya. It totally sucked. I ended up breastfeeding Greta in the van while trying to hype myself up to go into yet another store. Just know that if you get a gift certificate from us that it took a whole lot of misery to get it. :)

Yeah this is just a rambling pose I know. While I was out on Saturday I stopped at the local Tractor Supply and bought a generator. We are officially generator owners now. Yippie! If you have read this blog in the past you will know that every winter (and I mean every winter) we are stuck without electricity for some length of time. We live in the black pit of hell when it comes to reliable electricity. It goes out throughout the year but winter is when it gets dangerous. Now that we have a newborn in the house we decided we can't risk another winter without a generator. The unit isn't a big one like we were hoping to get but it will run the refrigerator, a couple of space heaters, a lamp and the aquarium heater. Enough to keep us going for a couple of days if the need arises. I'm hoping the thing just sits out in the shop and accumulates dust and never needs to be used but it is nice having the peace of mind that it's there if we need it.
Anyways, that's all that is happening around here, sorry for the rambling...it's so rare that I can sit at the computer and write while both kids are sleeping.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Dialog

Me: "Ok you two, smile for the camera."


Me: "Wesley, what are you doing?"

Wes: "I touching Sissy's eye."


This does not end well.

Lessons learned

I was changing Greta's diaper this morning while Wesley was playing in the living room. I heard Chance, our little black terror terrier, growl and then snap at Wesley and then he started crying. He came around the corner holding his face and crying so I picked him up to see what happened. Luckily the dog didn't bite him, there was no broken skin but Wesley was pretty shook up. Chance is a really good dog around little kids but he has a breaking point and usually I can tell when he's had enough "toddler time" then he goes in his room. Obviously I didn't catch it in time this morning.

I asked Wesley what happened and he told me through sobs that "Chance bad dog!". I told him that Chance doesn't lash out unless provoked and then proceeded to ask him what he did to Chance, to which he answered "I sat on him".

Well at least the kid is learning a lesson....I hope.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Baby Video

Here is a clip of Greta doing what Greta does best...be cute. She's 10 weeks old and getting easier by the day (or maybe we're just getting into a routine that works). She's sleeping until almost noon every day, not crying much anymore, napping in her swing twice a day (my arms are so happy!) and all around a happy girl. You might turn off your speakers as my "baby talk" is pretty obnoxious.

video

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The Waltz



Every evening Sean walks Greta around like this while I do dishes, feed animals and bathe Wesley. She's really mellowed out these past few weeks and just takes in the sights while walking with Daddy each night.

Monday, November 30, 2009

The Petri Dish

Have I mentioned what a nice husband I have? My nice husband put Greta to bed not once but twice this week while I went to the Twilight: New Moon movie. The first time I went with Jessica and we went all out. Purchased our tickets for opening weekend a month in advance, stayed in the expensive part of the theater with couches and had food served to us. The movie was good (not great) and we really had a nice experience.

The second time was two nights ago. It was an impulse thing that Jessica and I decided that evening. We stayed in the cheap seats this time. And apparently its ok to go to the movies when you're sick as a dog because we were surrounded by a chorus of nasty coughing people. It was hard to focus on the movie because of all the hacking. I felt like I was in a Swine Flu petri dish. But for some reason the combination of bad acting and mad coughing caused us to laugh until we cried. We decided to immortalize the occasion with a picture. Here we are with our make shift "swine flu masks". This was taken during the credits only moments before a theater employee came and told us no photographs were allowed. Good times.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Let's Decorate


We decorated the house (and the blog) this weekend for Christmas and Wesley had a blast helping out. It's amazing how much can change in a year! This year Wesley is so excited about Christmas. It's funny how hard it can be to try and teach someone about an imaginary tradition such as Santa, elves and the North Pole. I don't think he grasps the concept quite yet but we keep working on it. He had a lot of fun putting ornaments on the tree. We learned quickly to only let him handle the unbreakable ones. Every day now he wakes up and runs out of his room to look at the tree all lit up. It's fun seeing Christmas through a child's eyes.

The tree reflecting in those big eyes


Napping in her favorite spot


The lower half of the tree was covered


Too sweet