Friday, May 30, 2008

No News Is NOT Good News

So, there is no news on our house. For the last 9 months I have been saying, "Whoever said 'No News Is Good News' had not been trying to sell a house." So, we have our stuff in storage and brought some stuff back to MN, along with the cats who will soon have a new summer home with daddy's parents. One of mommy's friends has the dog. I cried on my way to deliver the dog. I don't even like her all that much, but it's just the whole situtation where we have to give away our animals until we have a permanent home in WI or have to move back to MN. It's great to be sitting here on my leather rocker/recliner typing. It is so comfortable. I miss having all our stuff with us. I like knowing that I can go in the garage and find the tools I need to put together Isabel's trike or that we have an air compressor sitting there to inflate the tires in my jogger stroller (which has to be left here because we only have so much space with us.) I have learned how to live without a lot of our stuff, but gosh darn! when we come back and have it all around us, we shure to appreciate it and miss it.

So, that's it. I will empatically proclaim if we get an offer and close on our house. So, no one has to worry that they won't know. But until then I guess we have to learn to live without even more of our stuff while we try out the hobo lifestyle. Honestly, this is all really hard and very stressful and I just wish it would end and we could just live in one place.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Things I Found Interesting in Parents Mag June Issue

  1. Tattoo You Child in Case they get lost. (They are temporary!)
  2. The Potty Caddy -- Very cute, kinda funny. Check out the names of some of the "mags" they get.
  3. The New Car Seat Rule that recommends being rear-facing until 36 inches and 30-35 pounds. What?!?!?! When we turned Isabel around at a year she was already spreading her legs bow-legged to sit rear-facing. At about 3 feet, but under 30 pounds, where would she be putting those legs of hers?
  4. Computer games for autistic children, check out Teachtown.com and Popcap.com (they recommend Bejewled 2 or Chuzzle on here.)
  5. 50 Free Prints at PictureWagon (code: PAERNT50), but just as nice is that 4x6 prints are normally 5 cents print. I have used winkflash.com in the past, but their prints are 8 cents a piece now. Although, you only save money with picture wagon if you buying at least 20 pictures because of shipping costs. If you order under 20 prints you could end up paying more because of shipping. Although, it might be as cost effective to order from Wal-greens or Wal-Mart and just pick it up at the store when you go. I haven't done digital print comparisons in a while, so you might need to do some research.
  6. Change your AA battery into a C or D battery. This I thought was a great idea. And they are rechargeable too. Look at the Power Pack or Travel Pack. Apprently you can buy this at Costco, although I don't have a membership there.

Not sure if any of this is of interest to anyone, but it peaked my interest. Kinda wish I had one of those blogs where I got money everytime someone clicked on a link from here, but I don't.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Happy Memorial Day!


Playing with a Ball

She was having fun trying to figure out all sorts of games she could play with this ball. One of her favorites was throwing it under the car so she could use the broom to fetch it out. For lunch, Isabel & Mommy went to the local organic beef & bison farm. They were having a baby bison showing, but we got there too late as the bison moved to the farm end of the field. She did get to see a rooster (which she would yell "cock-a-doodle-doo" at) and a bunch of cows (which she would yell "moooo!" at). It was very cute. The local FFA was there selling Bison burgers, so Isabel & I shared a burger & chips & a cookie. Last night we had our friend Elizabeth over (without her family - they are all taking a couple day vacation from each other or something). She mainly came over to hang out & talk with mommy & daddy while we drank wine & ate cheese, crackers & chocolates. Sounds like a nice way to spend an evening. Isabel did get a story out of her, which I think made her miss her own kids even more.

Blowing Bubbles

This is a picture from yesterday. She is obsessed with blowing bubbles. It's one of her favorite things. Speaking of favorite things, she says "I love (fill in the blank)" all the time now. Sometimes it's "I love dolly" or"I love cookies" or "I love pink" or "I love green" (She loves all colors) or "I love bubbles". A few times she has just said "I like (fill in the blank)", mostly she loves things.

We brought a few loads to the storage unit an Andy is still trying to get the car running. He went & bought a new alternator last night and is going to replace that today. We have to get that running soon, because on Thursday we head back to MN & bring some stuff with us and take the cats to their summer home with grandma & grandpa.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Steps


So, I'm not sure it it's one step forward and 2 steps back or maybe vice, versa. So, we were doing good on the potty training while there was a peer here who was potty training. The past 3 days there has been no pooping or peeing on the potty. She goes on there several times a day, but hasn't been able to make anything come out. She has been working on getting herself onto the potty by herself and is doing good at that.
The above picture is what she did with the storage covers. They became beds for her babies & stuffed animals. There are 6 of them spread out. Funny girl. She has also put all her babies at the table for breakfast and lunch today.
And something else she has done a couple times lately is put herself to bed or down for a nap. I was talking to grams today and Isabel diappeared upstairs and put a bunch of dolls & stuffed animals on her bed and then left the room to turn on the fan for white noise (which she turned on too high and it scared her). I came and turned it down and opened her room for her and she crawled into bed and said "Good Night Mommy". She was a little restless as she tried to figure out how to get all her dolls & stuffed animals under her quilt with her, but then I came up and put them away and gave her Dolly and her pacifier and she went right to sleep for 2 hours. She did this the other night for bedtime. Both times I have just been amazed.
Well, daddy is stil broken and so is my car. It's something else now. It's a good thing we got that stimulus check because otherwise we would be in the poor house paying for fixing broken things. Obviously, they are both still broken so we'll hve more money to pay for that. Plus we have a broken roof on the 3-season porch on our MN house that needs fixing. We are certainly on our way to the poor house. Although, like I said the stimulus check is paying for the unexpected broken daddy & broken car and hopefully it will cover all of it for both of them. The broken roof is coming out of our pocket. We are going to fix it next Saturday with the help of some wonderful friends and family (otherwise it would cost us even more to have someone else do it).

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Happy Birthday Isabel!

Length
Well, she is almost 3 feet tall. She is 35.5 inches tall, which is a gain of 4 inches over last year. And puts her at the 93rd percentile for length. According to this height predictor, based on her height at age 2, she will be 5 feet 8 inches. There is a 50% chance she'll be .7 inches on either side of that and a 90% chance she'll be within 1.7 inches of that.

Weight

She currently weighs 28 pounds 9 ounces, which is 5 pounds 3 ounces more than last year. She is in the 74th percentile for weight.

Happy Birthday Isabel!

We had a little birthday lunch with two of her friends that like to play dres up to. So, we had a dress-up birthday party. They girls put on tutus, crown, hats, necklaces, you name it, they put it on. We had lunch and they played and we painted fingernails and had brownies. I had enough of cake, so brownies it was and they were very good.

I read somewhere once that for a kid's birthday party you should have one friend for every year they are, so that is what I have done. Although last year the one friend was really two because of siblings. And even though we had a birthday "party" this weekend, that was more for mom & dad and that was when family could come since they work during the week. Her birthday was just an excuse to grill out and have people over, but today was all about her and nothing about mommy or daddy.

She had fun. I burned her birthday candle and since the weekend I have had up her 2-year old poster. I made a life-size poster of a a picture of her both last year and this year and plan to keep doing it through her 18th birthday. Then at her graduation I can hang up all her posters from one year old to 18 years old. And her little party started at 10:21, her birth time. I know - I'm a dork.

Tonight, I think daddy is going to take her out for ice cream for her birthday. Momy has a banquet to go to for Newcomer's Club, so she gets to spend the evening with dad and he can do something special just with her & him for her birthday.

Free Stuff in Parenting Magazines

Here are some things I found recently while reading some magazines.

Want to download a FREE fun song for the kiddos by Barenaked Ladies. It's called 7 8 9. I thought it was fun and may have to buy the CD now.

Get a free skin cancer screen from May through July. Look here to see where participating dermatologists are available. In WI, there are 3, one in each of these cities (Fort Atkinson, Madison, & Monroe). In MN, there was just one in Bemidji.

Get a Free copy of the book "Goodnight Giant"
Send in one Johnson's hair care product UPC and you'll receive a FREE copy of Goodnight Giant(a scholastic book). Send in the UPC along with your name, daytime phone, e-mail, and mailing address to:Goodnight Giant Book, Offer 557, Broadway PO box 711, New York , NY 10012. Offer expires 9/30/2008. Questions concerning this offer, contact P&Cconnects@scholastic.com

This last one is not something I found in a magazine. I stumbled across it about a month ago. But if you buy Arrowhead Mills products - save those UPC's or register receipts and get some free OXO products. Here are the details and form you need.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Playgroup at the Zoo

I forgot my camera at home and just had my camera phone and took this lone picture of our trip to the zoo today. We ended our trip much better than it started. I had to wake her 15 minutes before we left to get her dressed and start eating breakfast. She doesn't do well when she does not wake up on her own, so we had lots of crying in the car and we couldn't figure out why she was so upset and how to help her calm herself. She ended up puking from getting herself so worked up, so we had to pull over and change her clothes and clean up the carseat. Poor Lori cleaned up the puke on the carseat for me (Thank You!) and luckily I decided to bring along Isabel's change of clothes.

It turned out to be a nice trip to the zoo and a great day for it. We ended our little trip with a ride on the carousel. The girls loved it. We carpooled with Lori & Rachael there like we did last time. It is nice to carpool with them.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Sunday Pictures

Well, we had a nice little pary for Isabel today. We had it today because Auntie Phanie was only available on Sunday this weekend. Isabel's actual birthday is on Tuesday and she will officially be 2 years old then, but it's hard to ask people to come for a birthday party during the week, especially when family isn't that close in proximity. We'll do something fun for her that day as well.

Anyways, I made her a Kool-Aid cake for her birthday cake. We had Dora decorations (which I'll use again on Tuesday for her actual birthday). So, you can see her looking at the candles as we sing to her in the picture above. Then there is a picture of her giving Uncle J a high five, and the other picture is of our cousins Jeff & Luz and Uncle Henry.



We started the party outside and played for a while and got most of our eating in before it rained and we had to bring it inside. I made a ton of food and we do still have some left for a meal or two for us. The above is a collage of pictures from Isabel from today. You can kinda see the hair ties I made for her. They are very cute and I received several compliments on them.

Being outside today with all the fresh air was good for us. She took a 3.25 hour nap this afternoon, which meant that mommy & daddy were able to take a nap as well (once everyone had left).

Tomorrow begins another busy week of playgroups, walks, & visits to the Ymca.

Saturday Pictures

Grams came to stay with us yesterday and left today after Isabel's birthday party. We had fun. We opened a bunch of presents from Mommy & Daddy on Saturday and also her present Grams & Gramps. They made her a traveling (roll-up) chalkboard, which will come in handy and gave her some money. The presents Isabel got from mommy & daddy were a big puzzle, a new bubble maker, a few books, a notebook & new crayons, some hair ties mommy made, and a new DVD (plus her rocking horse we gave her earlier).
Here she is with Grams as she watches her new DVD, very intently.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Hanging Out with Rachael

Rachael brought along her fishing pole that has a pretend fish on it that you reel back in. The girls had fun with that.

The girls had their sleeping bags in the kitchen. Isabel closes her eyes when she is pretend sleeping and also does pretend snoring. Whenever we read a book where an animal is sleeping, she also does her pretend snore. She learned that from mommy & daddy.

Which TV Mom Are You?

Take this test!
You are Marge from The Simpsons. You may not share Marge's blue bouffant, but you do share her animated style of mothering. Sometimes the pressures of maintaining a happy home may push you toward the edge, but at the end of the day, you believe in your children wholeheartedly, even when they're being rather, um, spirited.


You encourage your kids' creativity and individuality, whether that means watching them perform the saxophone or helping them raise exotic lizards. You may sometimes say things that sound like old-fashioned parenting clich├ęs, but when it comes down to dealing with domestic disasters, you can be a pretty together, modern mama.

Budding Artists

Isabel's friend Ben came over to spend some time with us this morning. As he was leaving, her friend Rachael came over then. She has been a busy girl with her friends.

This was Ben's first time fingerpainting. He used a brush too after watching Isabel use a brush. It's so neat to watch the younger ones pick up on how to do things by watching older ones. He did such a great job.

It's Happening!

She pooped & peed on the potty several times last night with daddy while mommy was out walking with her friends. She was using the potty chair, but because her friend uses the potty seat on the big potty & mommy & daddy are on the big potty too, that is where she wants to be. That is just as well.

She had a good night with daddy while mommy was gone. Daddy made a little video of them playing/siging music.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Old Pictures

Mommy's friend Lori took these when we had our Mke zoo trip in April and I just got them. I think the one of me hugging her is cute.

More Pictures From Yesterday


Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Woohoo! Potty Time.

Well, I mentioned that Isabel's friend Rachael is hanging out with us a few days this week. Well, she is potty training and Isabel decided to do what Rachael was doing and so while Rachael was on the potty insert on the big potty chair, Isabel was on the potty chair and within seconds of Rachael going pee-pee, Isabel did it too! That was her first time going pee-pee on the potty.

Then later in the afternoon Isabel went into the bathroom and I went in to check on what she was doing and she looked at me and said "Potty" and so I took off her pants and pull-up and she sat down and pooped on the potty. So, I guess we'll be potty training this week since we'll be doing it with Rachael.

I wasn't planning on it because things will be crazy for us in a few weeks, but maybe this is ok. After the craziness subsides we will only have to worry about getting the pacifier away from her and not both potty training and weaning from the pacifier.

I have more pictures from today that I will post later.

Mother's Day & Today


Happy Belated Mother's Day to all those Mother's out there reading our blog.

In the morning, Daddy & Isabel made me breakfast of cinnamon rolls, scrambled eggs, & fruit. She helped him out. They made me a card; Isabel used every color marker she has. Daddy did the dishes and swept the kicthen as well. Then we went to Concord Zoo. Isbel was a little afraid of the sheep when they were "baaaa" ing. So, we spent quite a bit of time playing in the playhouses. We did feed the animals. Her favorite to feed was the ducks.

After naptime we hung out for a bit and went to dinner at Stolley's Hogg Alley. Daddy wasn't so sure about my choice to go to a biker bar for dinner on Mother's Day. We had a HD theme going on this whole weekend, I guess. We had really good burgers and they make hoemade fries (which I prefer) and homemade soups (Isabel had Chicken Dumpling.) And the dinig area is smoke-free and pretty separated from the bar. We are going to try it out for breakfast some weekend because they have awesome breakfast prices.




We have the dog house out again so that Molly can see it and get used to it, as she'll be living in it shortly when she goes to her summer home at the farm. Although, Isabel keeps trying to play in it, thinking it is a house for her.











For the next few days we are babysitting Isabel's friend Rachael. We went to play at another friend's house today and Isabel thought it would be fun to sit in a wagon and Rachael thought it would be fun to pull her around. They play so well together. They both have the same nap schedule (which they are sue to get up from here soon) and went down nicely after we read several stories. We also made a Curious George craft this morning. This afternoon we'll probably do some coloring and play outside some more.

I let Isabel pick out her pants today and she picked out a pair that fit last week and now are too short. She insisted on wearing them and I was not going to fight it. I gave her the choice and she picked something out. Why get her angry because I didn't know she grew. Next week we'll get the 2 year measurements and we'l see if she has hit the 3 foot mark....she's so close.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

103 Weeks


Remember, you can click on this picture to enlarge it to see better detail.
The top picture is from yesterday as we were heading out to the park for playgroup. She insisted on wearing her rain boots & daddy's hat. I told her to pick out shoes & a hat to wear and that is what she came back all excited about.
The second picture she is playing dress up and has on some necklaces, her Bob the Builder Hat and a feather boa.
This third picture was from the brief stint we spent at the May Faire at the area Waldorf School. I was expecting something more because when I nannied while I was in cllege, the kids went to Waldorf and they had a lot more activites at their May Faire celebration. She loved the 2 goats they had there.
The fourth picture is when she decided to stop playing dress up and play with her new puzzles again. We bought a couple of puzzles at Think, Play, Learn yesterday and she really loves them. They are kinda that next stage of puzzle learning.
The last picture is when we went to the local Harley dealership for their open house and Battle of the Bands Contest. Isabel loved it there. She was dancing quite a bit. The band we were there listening to was Hot House. I did take a video of her dancing, but I took it on the side. So, please excuse my stupidness as you click on the link above.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Pictures from Today & Yesterday

Yesterday was an Isabel & Mommy Day. We went to the Y in the morning and then we had her dentist appointment. She did fabulous there. She is such a good dental patient. They said there was no plaque at all on her teeth and that we are doing a good job having her brush and helping her brush. Afterwards, she fell asleep as we were driving, so I decided to run some errands that were out of the way right away. She woke up after about a half hour in the car and then we stopped to pick up Subway for the two of us and ate that at a park and then we played. The park was at a nice sandy lake beach. It has a slide and some stuff to climb on and some swings. She loves the slide and loved the sand even more. It's a good thing that mommy keeps some park toys in the car for these impromptu park visits. We had sucha good time and then we came home and read stories and she took another nap. Although, after mommy left to go walking with her friends she was kind of a handful for daddy.
Isabel's new obession is play-doh, which she calls "Ploh!" We have to play with it at least once a day, but it has now become twice a day recently.
Here is the dirt box once again.....she loves digging in that. She's at that stage where filling up things with ANYTHING whether it be dirt or rocks or sand or water or toys is fun. It's like she has all these little experiments going on inside her head as she tries to figure out just how much of each thing she can fit into a container.

Isabel now has her first true dislike of something. She HATES spider webs. One daya couple weeks ago there was a spider web across her cube slide/climber and it got on her face and she didn't like it one bit. Now if she sees a spider web (& a darn spider keeps making a web there) she whines and points to it and says "Spi, spi, spi." It's just the web, not the spider, that she doesn't like.

She really loves this new hat mommy got her and the sunglasses Jessi gave her.

Having Friends Over

Today we had some friends over. It was good for Isabel to practice sharing her toys, especially her cars. The boys love cars, as does Isabel. We had a lot of fun with play-doh, painting, racing cars, storytime, playing outside & much more.

A few pictures from this slideshow & pictures from yesterday will be posted soon.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Slideshow of Playgroup Birthday Party

Playgroup Birthday Party

Both Isabel & Noah turn two this month, so we had a joint playgroup at Michelle's house for the kids. There is a slide show that I will be uploading soon, but for those that can't view it easily these are my favorite pictures.
Isae had a goodtime but fell asleep in he car on the way home. Good thing she was snakcing so much there because she is sleeping through lnch right now. It was such a beautiful ay to hve an outside party.
Here are some of the closeups of some of her friends that I like. Remember, you can always click on the picture to enlage the entire collage.


This was a fun one. The kids kept climbing on the fence to try & see the train they could here.

It was a fun party. Thanks Michelle for hosting it at your place!

Monday, May 05, 2008

Other Weekend Pictures

This collage is a picture from yestesday when we were babysitting her friends so their parents could go out & have a dinner w/o kids. It's nice to have one of those once in a while. We did some painting on paper (they each got their own big sheet) and rocks. Our playroom looks like a toddler art gallery because they were not dry enough to take home with them, plus we had other paintings & artwork of Isabel's up too.

Here is Isabel's new rocking horse. This is actually a birthday present from mommy & daddy that we decided to give her early so she can play with it longer. She has other smaller things she can open at her party later this month, things that we can pack along with us in our hobo lifestyle.

Saturday, May 03, 2008

102 Weeks

Isabel received a special birthday package in the mail from Godmother Jessi. Even though her birthday is 3 weeks away, we let her open it. There is little point waiting until the day when she can start enjoying it now. There will be plenty to enjoy on her birthday. She absolutly loves the sunglasses and has been wearing them around the house this cloudy Saturday afternoon.

Isabel has discovered mommy's & daddy's shoes and slippers and loves to put them on and walk in them. She has an easier time in mom's shoes than in dad's. Although both are big sets of shoes to fill. She's still in a size 6 (toddler). Sometimes she wears shoes that are bigger just 'cuz her feet are chubby on top.

Playing Catch Up (Again)

Well, we've been busy and I haven't been taking pictures, so posts have been slow. We've been busy with playdates, going to the Y, & walking. Since it is finally nice enough to walk outside there is a bunch of us in Newcomers that have started walking together, which is very nice. We got her 2 year portrait done the other day. I was hoping to have those pictures in for when we have family here for a birthday party, but the date they gave was a few days after. So, here's hoping they come in early!

I got out the other evening with some of the ladies from the club for our wine group and we went to the Coffee Vault for their wine night on Thursday night. We found out they do storytime on Tuesday mornings, so we are going to check that out in a couple weeks (next week Tuesday we can't as we are having birthday playgroup for Noah & Isabel who both turn 2 this month.)

In other news, dadd was in a little accident last night. I purposefully tried to bury that in here as I didn't want to freak anyone out. He was wearing full protective gear (it's a good thing he convinced me that it was a good idea to buy everything) so he was covered head-to-toe and didn't get any road rash. He was turning and didn't see a patch of gravel and lost control. He has a fractured radial head, so his arm is in a sling for 4-6 weeks and as long as that heal properly that will be it. Without the sling, you wouldn't know (by looking at him) that anything happened. He has some pain killers, which he seemed to like taking last night.

Isabel was such a trooper through going to pick up daddy & bring him to the ER and staying there & then waiting to get his prescription. She didn't get to bed until 10:15pm last night, so I hope she stays asleep a little longer today. We had some book in the car that I brought in with us and I had a small tape measure in my purse I gave her play with, which brought many minutes of enjoyment and measuring. She had never really seen/played with one before, so it was new & exciting to her.

This afternoon we plan to go to church & then out to eat with our friends who introduced up to that church and tomorrow we are babyssing for some friends. Next week is another week of playgroups, playdates, going to the Y, & walks. But we also have Isabel's 2nd dental appointment. We're a little past the 6 month mark for her checkup, but we're fine. I called yesterday to schedule her 2 year well child exam and ended up having to wait until July 2nd, although I did ask them to call if something opens sooner. She's just fine, but I would rather keep it closer to her birthday.

I will take pictures today and post them. I am on my last 3 Saturdays of weekly pictures. My plan was to do that for the first two years and assemble them in a photo album that godmother Jessi gave us. I acually have the first year assembled, but since we moved here I have not done any picture sorting, but I did take all the pictures and have had prints made of about half of this second year (I think.) I am not sure what I will do after that....weekly is pretty intense and if I ever have another child I need to be able to keep up. I was thinking a monthly picture, and by that I don't mean a picture from that month, but a picture on the 20th of every month even if she is crying, crabby or covered in mud -- that's the picture for that month. I may even get into scrapbooking for this -- but I don't know yet.

Oh - and if you think my weekly (it was weekly on a Saturday because she was born on a Saturday) or monthly (on the 20th of every month) is a little strange or even perhaps, anal. Well, then knowing that I have her birthday parties starting at 10:21 (her birth time) might put you over the edge. I don't know what I'll do if I have another child and they are born at 2am, so I'll just have to figure something cleaver out in that case because I am certainly not inviting everyone over at 2am.

Don't confuse by all my "if I have another child" references to be giving you a clue. I did got in to the gyno's office this week and got my next dosage.....so there is nothing that we know that you don't know.