Sunday, September 26, 2010

Picking Apples...sort of

Saturday we enjoyed the beautiful and wonderfully crisp fall weather with a trip to Lynd's Apple orchard. John was out of town for his annual brother's golf outing so the kids and I were on our own. Except not really, because my sister-in-law Rebecca and her kids spent the weekend with us, and my mom, my Grams, and Kimmy's 3 kids also joined in the orchard fun. We explored the market, parading our 7 kids through the free samples line (several times), went on a hay ride where we got to pick apples to sample along the way, and browsed the displays of pumpkins, gourds, and mums. By the time we had done all of this as well as trying to pose the kids in various "festive" fall photos, we were whipped and the tots were starting to melt down. So we never ended up picking any apples besides the ones we already ate. So much for all that homemade applesauce I was going to make. At least I did bring home a jar of apple butter and some delicious blueberry jam. Yummy!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Thomas the Train

Today we headed to Lebanon, OH to see Thomas the Train with Grandma Jan and Papa Bob. This is a traveling exhibit that allows kids to ride a real working train dressed up like Thomas. Eli was really excited and loved it all. It was a warm day and a sweaty train ride on a train only able to travel at 10 mph...but watching his face was worth every penny (that Grandma and Grandpa spent)I mean seriously, look at this face. This is just priceless! Eli and one of the conductors
Norah had fun too. Eli wanted her to hold his train for this picture

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Growing and growing

Hard to believe Norah is already past the 4 month mark and halfway to 5. She is at an age that I just love where she is cooing and interactive but will still fall asleep easily in my arms when she's tired. And this baby gets lots of cuddle time because she does not enjoy being put down for very long. It's so hard to get things done during the day but I keep reminding myself how quickly this stage will pass. I just strap her in the Ergo and let her snuggle up for a nice long nap while I do laundry and try to keep Eli from doing things like locking himself in the pantry in attempts to eat an entire Costco bag of Craisins or peeing on the refrigerator (both true stories). There is nothing better than feeling her warm baby breath sound asleep against my chest. Here are her latest developments and discoveries...

Starting to reach for toys with hands and feet and shoving everything in her mouth
Learning to eat rice cereal from a spoon
laughing and cooing and loving to be tickled

Finally sleeping through the night peacefully in her crib! This I am 95% thrilled about and 5% saddened and already picturing her heading off to college.

And even some early signs of crawling.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Day 3....

I am beginning to feel like a janitor. I've even contemplated purchasing some blue coveralls with an embroidered name badge.

This is hard work. I feel like we are making progress at times, and at other times I feel like jumping ship. The low point of my day yesterday occurred when I found that Eli had peed a river under the kitchen table, had donned his rain boots, and was happily splashing and stomping around in his "rain puddle." Awesome, thank you buddy.

Today has been better. We even managed to make it to Norah's doctor's appointment and back without any accidents. I can see the wheels starting to turn in his head and I know that he will get the hang of it soon.

Now back to my bucket and mop...

Monday, September 6, 2010

Do cloth diapered kids potty train sooner?

Absolutely. Especially when that cloth diapered kid happens to poop 5-6 times PER DAY. I mean seriously people, I did not sign up for all that bowel goodness.
So... with all our vacations and big events done and over with for the summer, I decided it was time to tackle this major milestone. Armed with a dozen adorable tiny toddler underpants, stickers, silly bands, a bribe basket, progress chart, potty seat, flushable wipes, etc. etc., I was as ready as they come. When you're potty training it's recommended that you plan on locking yourself in the house for a good week until you can go out without diapering. This is the part I'm dreading the most. We leave the house every single day, even if its just to wander aimlessly through the grocery store. So I might have to ask John to hide my keys before he leaves for work.

Anyway, today was day 1. Eli woke up to find this in the bathroom:
He did pretty well. Just 2 accidents in 13 hours, one occurring during dinner when he was consumed with devouring his mac n' cheese. You know you're a mom when you spend 4 hours in one day parked on the bathroom floor making up songs about poop and pee to the tune of every kids song you've ever heard. I felt like I was talking a pregnant woman through birth.

The most surprising thing to me was that despite temptations like chocolate chips, gummie bears, cookies & cheese puffs in the rewards basket, what did Eli chose every single time? A silly band. He had accrued a whole sleeve of them by the end of the day. Boy doesn't know what he's missing out on.

Gearing up for another house-bound day tomorrow.

OBX Vacation

A few of my favorite snapshots from our trip to the Outer Banks last week. I did a terrible job taking pictures this year because every free moment I had was spent at the beach sitting in my favorite chair, toes in the water, reading a book. I do not regret it, it was bliss. Thank you again mom and dad for providing this wonderful family vacation. 27 people under one roof is no easy feat, and it takes a lot of work to put it all together.

Eli had to be majorly coaxed to even touch the ocean water. He thought the sand on his feet was "gross mommy" and he ran screaming from the shore when the waves rolled in. That's my boy!

The cousin picture keeps on growing. 11 grandkids now and counting. Notice the 4 boys matching "faux hawks"

Eli showing Max his special sleeping quarters, which was basically a blanket bed stuffed into a teeny tiny closet with a door that we shut once he fell asleep. Each morning Eli would stumble through the door when the pidder-padder of cousin feet upstairs awoke him and go racing up to play.
Throwing shells in the ocean
My favorite little people