Wednesday, August 31, 2011

August 31

Isla is three months old today!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

August 30

Audrey wanted to do a craft this morning while Isla was napping. So I decided to make this letter K week. I'm kind of uninspired by the letter K, so this may be the only activity we do for the week.

We made a King K. We even got crazy and pulled out the glitter, which was a big hit with Audrey.

This seemed like a very appropriate craft, as one of Audrey's favorite things to do right now is sing King of the Forest from the Wizard of Oz. She only sings the first line, and then my mom taught her to say, "I have courage" after that. It's so cute...I just love the way she says courage!

Monday, August 29, 2011

August 29

Last night, I opened up my nook to read before bed, and it looked like this:
See that white/black spot in the bottom left hand corner? That's definitely not supposed to be there. It cuts off the first 3-4 words of the last 8 lines of each page. Kind of annoying to read books that way.

I was pretty sad, because I really do love my nook. And I really can't afford to buy a new one right now.

Tonight we went to Barnes and Noble to see what they could do about it. The lady was really nice and right away she said, "oh yeah, that's a fairly common problem. We'll get you a new one."

So that was really easy. I should get my new nook in three business days. I'm so happy that it was such an easy (and free!) solution!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

August 28

Today was my first day back to teaching 2 and 3 year old Sunday School at church. I will not lie--I definitely enjoyed my time off. I'm not sure that teaching preschool is my true calling in life. Actually, I know it is not my calling. I'm honestly a little bit terrified of facing a classroom full of little preschoolers and the chaos that always goes along with that.

But I do enjoy planning activities and crafts and lessons for them, even if it is a little chaotic in our classroom. Today's lesson was about Esther. So I jumped back to my days of teaching Junior High Bible and used some of the same activities. I figured the attention span of two year olds and seventh graders probably isn't all that different! =)

Purim is a Jewish holiday that celebrates the story of Esther. Today, we made masks to tell the story of Esther. We also made groggers (noisemakers) to shake every time the name of Haman was mentioned. And we ate hamantashen for our snack.

I had attempted to make hamantashen for my 7th grade classes five years ago, and it was a disaster! So, why in the world did I think it would be a good idea to make hamantashen again? For 2 and 3 year olds even, who could care less about it and aren't going to remember it at all? Because I'm a crazy person, that's why.

Fortunately, this recipe was much better (and I think my cooking skills have improved over the past 5 years too). This hamantashen turned out perfectly with no screaming/stress involved. Just perfect little three cornered pastries with a strawberry filling. So pretty! And they tasted good too!
Now, the true test was the kids reaction to the hamantashen. I know my two year old, and she can be picky when it comes to eating new foods. The result with these kids: they loved it! All except one girl, who wouldn't touch it. The rest of them gobbled it up, and many of them even had two. This is Elliot after he shoved the entire thing in his mouth!Here are a few of them acting out the story with our masks. This part of the lesson went surprisingly well. Any time I ask for audience participation with these kids, I always brace myself for the worst (hitting, kicking, crying, tantrums, running around the room like a crazy person, etc.). But they really, really liked holding the masks on their faces, and therefore were fairly cooperative through the whole storytelling time.

August 27

Our annual Block Party was today. They shut down our block and set up tables in the street (right in front of our house). Everyone comes out for a potluck and music and games and neighborly fellowship. The party is actually still going strong out there...but we're boring and had to put the girls to bed and get ready for church tomorrow.

Sine the tables were sitting in front of our house all day, Audrey has been talking about it: "When we go to my party? We have cake there?" Over and over and over again, all day long! So she was excited when it was time to go and finally eat her cupcake.
Our neighbor Rosie got a hold of Isla and didn't want to give her back for a while!!

Audrey thought it was pretty fun to be able to play in the street. She kept asking, "No cars gonna hurt me?" I kept trying to emphasize that it was a special day, so she could play in the street today only!
This is Doc. He is the so-called "mayor" of our block and organizes the party each year.

Friday, August 26, 2011

August 26

This may not look like much to you, but I was totally impressed with this picture Audrey drew today. It is the first picture that she has drawn completely on her own where I have been able to recognize what she was drawing.

She was coloring at the dining room table today while I was in the other room with Isla. I noticed she was being really quiet for a long time, so I went in to see what she was drawing (and to make sure she wasn't drawing on herself or the table or anything else that is off limits!). I asked her what she was drawing, and she said, "Somewhere over the rainbow."

Thursday, August 25, 2011

August 25

This was Audrey's "outfit" while playing dress up today: shirt, no shorts, three bead necklaces, one of Isla's headbands worn around her neck as a necklace, and one flower wreath crown on her head (which she likes to wear backwards so that all the ribbons fall in her face).

Wearing this getup, she wanted to follow the yellow brick road and go find the Wizard. She insisted that Isla and I follow her while she searched around the house for him. She kept saying, "We go see the Wizard now. The Wizard is always nice to me. He not going to scare you." Audrey found the Wizard in all sorts of places: lying in bed and taking a nap, in the kitchen fixing breakfast, in the bathroom going potty, and on the couch where he could hold her.

She cracks me up with all the little make believe games she has been playing lately. I'm really impressed with her imagination. You just never know what she is going to say or do next.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

August 24

I was planning to take a picture of the girls today. They were both dressed in yellow outfits with cute yellow bows in their hair. I did not intend to dress them in matching outfits, but it kind of ended up looking like I planned it. I thought we should get a picture of them together in their matching yellows...but then I never took the picture.

This might be the lamest post ever. I'll try to do better tomorrow. I have two girls sleeping soundly right now, and a good book waiting for me!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

August 23

Isla is 12 weeks old today.

Though she doesn't look too happy in this picture, she is starting to give us lots of smiles and giggles and squeals. I keep trying to capture it on camera, but I think most of her smiles and giggles and squeals are in response to our faces. When there is a camera in front of my face, she doesn't quite respond in the same way.

She slept through the night three nights in a row, with 9-10 hour stretches each night! The past two nights she has been back to an early morning feeding around 4 am. But she is going to bed between 8-9 pm, so she is still getting some 7-8 hour stretches. I'll take it!

I think she might be starting to figure out that her hands are attached to her body, and that she has control over them. Occasionally she will swing her hand and hit a toy on her play mat, then squeal with delight and do it again.

Next week, she will be three months old and officially out of the newborn stage! I may be a little sad that she is no longer my tiny, little, sweet, cuddly baby. But I am also excited to see all the new things she is going to learn and do in the coming months!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

August 21

Today, Nana and Audrey played dress up, and we had a fun photo shoot!

My mom had to buy a formal dress for a concert she was in last weekend. Since she never wears formal gowns, she wanted to have a few pictures taken in her dress...just for fun. Then while we were consignment shopping yesterday, Mom found a dressy dress for Audrey that was just $1. So the two of them got all dressed up in their pretty dresses, and we headed downtown to take some pictures!

(Warning: Lots of pictures ahead!)

Audrey wanted to pose like this:
So Nana joined in and posed like that with her:
Audrey wanted to twirl in her pretty princess dress.

Mom also brought a black dress for me. She bought it for herself, but it didn't quite fit her right. So she thought I might like to have it...for all of those formal occasions where I need to wear a fancy black dress.

Then she talked me into posing for a picture with her. Never mind that I hadn't fixed my hair or put on any makeup today...

Saturday, August 20, 2011

August 20

My mom and I did a little consignment store shopping this afternoon. Best deal of the day: an adorable pair of silver pedipeds for just $10! They were still in the box, and they look brand new. Pedipeds are my favorite shoes for little ones, though they are a little on the expensive side. So finding a nice, new-looking pair for just $10 is a good deal.They are a bit big for Isla now, but she will grow into them!

Friday, August 19, 2011

August 19

My mom took this picture of the girls today. I think they are pretty cute!
And here are a few more pictures I took off of my mom's camera from the past couple of days.

Getting ready to watch The Wizard of Oz at the Muni.
Posing with the statues at Scheels:

Thursday, August 18, 2011

August 18

I meant to post this last night, but I kept falling asleep and couldn't finish it.
On Wednesday, Isla had her second physical therapy appointment. Shannon, her physical therapist, noted improvement in her range of motion and head control. She seemed pleased with that progress. She also seemed optimistic that as her neck and head continue to strengthen her head would round out on its own.
I am not feeling that optimistic. I just don't understand how her sweet little flat head is ever going to round out all by itself. It has not improved in the past 2 1/2 months, it's hard to see how another 2 months will change anything.

Generally, flat heads are caused by neck problems. A baby doesn't move their neck around enough or only moves it in one direction, therefore causing a flat head. With Isla, the therapist seems to think it is the other way around. Because her head is flat, it is harder for her to move her neck all the way to each side. So it is the flat head causing some minor neck problems and not the other way around.

Shannon felt like Isla was on track now though, so we don't have to go back to see her for another two weeks.
In other news, Isla has started sleeping through the night! (At least for the past three nights. I'm fully aware that she could turn me into a liar and wake up every hour tonight.) Last night she slept from 8 pm-6 am without waking up once. It was great! She is a horrible sleeper during the day and will often only take 30 minute cat naps. But she is sleeping at night, so I'm trying not to complain!

Audrey is doing better with sleep. She is generally sleeping from 8 pm-7 am. But she is usually up once or twice a night. When she wakes up, she comes into our room, then we walk her back to her room and she goes back to sleep. It's not too bad. Sometimes she wakes up at 5 am and won't go back to sleep, and that is the only time that we will let her sleep in our bed. I really want her to sleep in her own bed, but when it is 5 am and my choices are to get up with her or to let her sleep with us, I'm going to choose let Audrey sleep with us for a little bit.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

August 17

My mom is in town to hang out with us for a couple of days. We are excited to have her here with us.

Tonight, we decided to take the girls to the Muni to watch The Wizard of Oz and to hear Daddy run sound. Audrey did pretty good. She watched all of the first act and then fell asleep shortly after the second act started. I think she liked it quite a bit.

She has been talking about seeing the lion for a while now. Today, she started talking about how she wanted the lion to come see her and how she wanted him to hold her. She did have the chance to see the lion, but it was after the show. And after the show, she was pretty out of evidenced by this picture.But we saw the lion, and we have a picture to prove it....because she probably won't remember it in the morning!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

August 16

Tonight I took senior pictures for a girl in our church. Kaylee was in the 4th-5th grade Sunday School class that I taught when we first moved here. Then I taught her at school for 6th, 7th, and 8th grade Bible. Now, she is going to be a senior in high school and will soon be going off to college! Wow, I'm getting old. And wow, we've lived here for a long time!

I was both nervous and excited to take these pictures. Nervous, because I've never taken senior girl pictures before. And excited, because I've never taken senior girl pictures before. I was determined to make these the best pictures I have ever taken. I haven't made it through all the pictures I took (over 400 total!), but so far, I'm pretty pleased with the way they turned out.

It was a beautiful evening. The lighting was absolutely perfect too. Really, we could not have asked for a better night to take these pictures.
I also got to try out my new reflector (used in the picture below). It worked exactly as it was supposed to, and it made such a difference! All three of us were amazed by it. Totally worth the $15 I spent on it!
For our final shots of the day, Kaylee wanted to take some pictures in the park's splash pad. She was not afraid to get wet and have fun!

Monday, August 15, 2011

August 15

This picture was taken on November 6, 2009 for this post. It was our first book club meeting, and we discussed the book The Help. It is an excellent of my favorites!

Tonight, our book club went to see the movie version of The Help. It's often difficult to like movies based on books, because it is just about impossible to get all the detail of a book into a movie. The Help might be my favorite movie based on a book. While things were changed and things were left out, the movie really captured the essence and spirit of the book. I thought it was great!

I also really enjoyed a night out! Daniel is in the middle of running sound for The Wizard of Oz at the Muni. So, he has been gone most evenings lately. Being home with the girls all day and all evening can make for some really long days. I was ready to get away for a few hours tonight.

Also, be warned: a long winded post about babies and sleep and schedules and stress is on the way. I have a lot to say on these subjects...when I get my thoughts together and enough time to write them down.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

August 14

Since we have (sort of ) been trying to eat more real foods, we have discovered an easy, cheap and healthy snack...air popped popcorn.

We inherited this air popper from someone, but we've never used it much. Now that we've started using it, I have no idea why we ever made microwave popcorn. Air popped popcorn tastes just as good, is just as fast and easy to make, and it is so much healthier. There is no oil involved, which means there is no fat and very few calories. Audrey loves it, and I don't feel bad about letting her eat a lot of it. Plus, she loves to watch it pop!
Just so baby Isla doesn't feel left is a picture of her from tonight. She was smiling, and I was trying to capture it on camera. But as soon as I lifted the camera up she would stop smiling. Then when I put it down, she would start smiling again. Little stinker!

Friday, August 12, 2011

August 12

It was a beautiful day today, perfect for an afternoon at the state fair. We saw lots of animals and ate some fair food and walked around a lot. Good times.

We skipped Audrey's normal afternoon nap to go to the fair, so she was pretty exhausted by the time we left. (Notice the upside down sunglasses. She insists on wearing them that way, and it is too cute).

Thursday, August 11, 2011

August 11

We pulled out the Bumbo seat for Isla today. Since I'm desperately trying to find ways to keep her off her back, I thought we should see how well she could sit in it.
Isla is holding her head up fairly well these days. She can keep it up for a little bit, but then it tends to fall either to the side or the front. She was content in the Bumbo for several minutes today. We will be adding it into our rotation of activities for her. In the next month, her head control and neck strength should improve a lot. Once she is able to steadily hold her head up, my quest to keep her off her back will be SO MUCH easier!
Heaven forbid that Audrey should be left out of any of Isla's milestones! Of course she wanted to have a turn in the Bumbo after Isla was finished.
Seeing Audrey in the chair made me think about when she was a baby. I looked back at the old blog, and we put Audrey in the Bumbo for the first time when she was 10 weeks old too.

Then I thought it would be fun to do a comparison of Audrey then and Audrey now. Crazy how much changes in just 2 1/2 years...not only has Audrey grown up, but my photography has improved too!
While I was creating side by side images, I went ahead and made a side by side of Audrey and Isla at 10 weeks.