Thursday, February 27, 2014

a glimpse of spring

We had a few nice days where we could actually go outside and enjoy it. As I type this though we have gone back to single digits. Brr!

Even though we had some clear pathways, the kids still chose to stomp through the snow as much as possible.

Selah loves to be outside. One day I opened the door to check the temperature and she had a fit when we immediately came back.

There was even a day that almost reached 60 degrees! No jackets? In February?!

We even did some yard work. And not to mention finally getting to take down the Christmas lights outside!

We enjoyed one more walk before the bitter cold returned.

The snow pile in the front of our house is gigantic from all the snow being pushed in the cul-de-sac to one spot. The kids love to climb up there!

Well, most of the time. :) She kept sinking and she was getting too cold. Go figure.

Since this winter has had more snow than usual, AJ has been singing the song "It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas...every day of the year." :) We truly are enjoying it while it lasts, but will be so happy when spring decides to stick around.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

a trip to Wheaton

We have not made a trip up to visit AJ's sister in such a long time so figured we would take advantage of AJ's 3 day weekend to go. Hooray for more random bank holidays!

The kids traveled so well on the way up. We stopped for lunch and let me tell you this is the last place on earth I would want to eat but it was really the only option. And because I have a strong disliking for this place my kids have never had a Happy Meal before. Until this trip. Can we get any less American? But seriously, how do our bodies digest that stuff?

Just look at the happiness it brought to them though. 
Happy meal = happy kids.

And to her. 
Happy chair = happy baby.

And to us. 
Happy kids = happy parents. 

The kids had so much fun with their cousin. Ari loved playing with toys that made Cousin O laugh.

It's amazing how much babies change in one year. Selah and her cousin are closer in age, but right now he seems closer to Evangeline since he's running around now.

The kids were entertained for hours days with all of his fun toys.

We ventured out to get some pizza, Chicago style of course.

This ball pit was one of the highlights from the trip. For the kids. Not me. I'm so glad we don't own it because there would always and forever be 200 balls all over the house. 

Although I did enjoy my fair share of it as well.

The kids surprisingly did very well sitting still and smiling for the picture. It only took 2 to get it right!

Aunt Erin was so kind to appease Evangeline's desire to dress up in something purple with lots of jewelry. However, this is just one of many instances where we as parents struggle to "parent". She is our emotional child. Always has been. I don't relate to that at all which is part of the problem. Tears will flow at any little thing and sometimes it's hard to reason with her. This particular instance she started bawling because we lifted the front of the dress so she could walk without tripping. ?!?! After much talking and explaining she finally calmed down. But these emotional outbursts really stretch our patience. It's a fine line between letting her express herself and letting her emotions overrun self-control. I deal with these type issues on a daily basis with her. We just continue to pray that God will use her to grow us as parents and that we aren't completely screwing up :) And also that she is able to learn self-control and explain her feelings rather than lashing out.

After the outburst ended she was happy again to show off her exquisite outfit. 
Pretty things are her love language.

It was a fun mini-vacation full of naps, kids running around, delicious food, adult conversation post bedtime, cold weather, cheap organic milk, laughing, playing, trying every food sample at the deluxe grocery store, picking up toys, reading books, and eating dessert after kids went to bed. We are looking forward to our next trip up already!

Sunday, February 16, 2014

staying busy

February has been full of friends, family, and snow.

This little friend came to play and Selah really enjoyed eating  his snacks while he tried to eat her. Ok I don't think he was trying to eat her but it sure looks like it! I love little people. They do the funniest things.

My  nephew turned two and we got to enjoy this delicious cake my sister-in-law made. Isn't she talented! She seriously needs to quit her day job and make cakes instead.

The kids were counting down the minutes until they got to enjoy it.

Evangeline is always looking for someone to sit with. She is our cuddler.

And our messy eater.

And our charmer.

Selah's 4th tooth is on the verge of breaking through. She hasn't seemed to mind and her sleeping habits have improved a lot! After letting her cry it out a few times she is only waking up one time a night now. Woohoo!

We finally took her out in the snow for a bit and she loved it! 

After getting another 7 inches we went out after dinner to shovel some while the kids played on the huge mound.

The only way they get excited about coming in is when we offer hot chocolate. :)

They never get tired of playing in the snow!

Selah has been busy helping me keep the house clean. Give her a cloth and she will take it all over the place and wipe things down. That's chemical-free cleaning at its finest!

Ari continues to enjoy all the sun coming in. I can't wait to get out in the sun this summer!

Selah has lots of friends who love her. Her friend even helped change her diaper!

Monday, February 3, 2014

11 months

The days are flying by and I'm getting close to having a one year old, again. She keeps me busy but I'm enjoying these days so much.

She continues to have a hearty appetite and won't let anyone else get away with eating unless she is included.

She needs a bath after every meal because she prefers to feed herself. It took me a few days to realize why she was refusing the spoon. Once I plopped the mess on her tray she didn't hesitate to shove fistfuls in at a time!

She gives the funniest looks and generally scrunches up her nose to smile. The hair is coming in nice and even (shock!) and we've successfully had a bow clipped in for 30 minutes without it being removed :)

Tooth #3 just popped through!

She has figured out getting around the kitchen by pushing chairs around. She mainly crawls everywhere and has recently started "cruising" at a slow pace. I try to get her to practice walking with my hands but after a few steps she is aggravated and either cries or plops down on her bottom.

She has started pointing with her whole hand and saying "eh-eh" at something she wants. Sometimes it is even followed by a little "fit" if she can't get what she wants. :)

She figured out how to get out of the chair...

but then decided she wanted back up.

She tried so hard but her little legs weren't quite long enough!

I wish I could say that she is a great sleeper. We've had many long, hard nights with barely any sleep. A "good" night is usually only waking up 1 or 2 times, instead of 4 or 5. :) It's hard to know what the problem is (i.e. teeth, hungry, or just spoiled). I do have to say that my husband is a huge contributor at night which allows us both to get some rest. At this point it's not frustrating every time she wakes up. It's more like "Oh good, I just got 2 hours solid sleep so it's my turn". Sounds crazy but we accepted years ago that sleep is one thing that a parent must sacrifice, so why not have a good attitude right? Because then I can justify indulging in coffee the next morning and realizing how much joy they bring us no matter what :)