Thursday, December 29, 2011

Christmas 2011

We were happy when it was finally Christmas Eve! Until that day, Blake had been at the hospital 18 days straight. Not full shifts every day--some were night shifts so he was technically in the hospital Saturday and Sunday. But still. And at least 11 of those nights he was home after the kids were in bed. We were all pretty burned out.

Our nativity.

Presents set out.

The favorite toy of the day was the one he saw first--Mr. Potato Head.
He also loved his big-boy legos.
James just wanted to eat.
So we all took a break and had waffles with strawberries and whipped cream.
Pausing for a moment to take an annual in-front-of-the-Christmas-tree photo.
Yes, my boys love their kitchen set. The mess is getting bigger.
Hooray, an ironing board cover from my parents! (But I thought it was pretty good that they noticed we needed one!)
I love the look of concentration on his face.
James wanted to play with the old toys.
And maybe page through a new book. He will never let me turn the pages or read books to him. Books are for flipping through.
More mess. And I had to take a picture of one of my presents--an umbrella light for photography. I made everyone dodge it so I could get decent Christmas morning pics.
LOVING the new bike. We've ridden it multiple times every day this week. He's getting the hang of balancing on it a little bit. And sometimes he just walks with it. Either way, he loves it. We were out riding yesterday and he stopped and stood up and said, "My bum hurts." He stood for a minute and then said, "It's all better!" Way to go, Isaac, don't let saddle soreness get you down!

Blake got some random computer things, a printer, razor, shoes, etc. My big gift was a Silhouette. I've only done one test run and one cutting out a fabric HAPPY BIRTHDAY for a new birthday banner, but it's super cool and fun. What should I cut out next?

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Christmas card

Please pretend that a hand-addressed envelope arrived in your mailbox. This was inside:

2 busy busy parents
0 things we would change if we could
1 joy-schooling, fast-running, always-talking 3-year old
1 red-haired, toddling Mama's boy

Gingerbread houses

We had a fun time making gingerbread houses with some friends. Next time I think we need to do it with someone who isn't going to make ours look lousy, though!

Yes, this last one is ours. Put to shame. But I do get some credit for making the gingerbread, right?
Isaac was making me laugh in this outfit he was in the other day and how he was doing some serious digging.
Isaac's latest thing is writing! I don't know where he picked it up, because I never really brought it up, but all of a sudden he's writing letters.
If you can make it out, he wrote a mom down at the bottom and two Isaac's (he thinks he has O's in his name instead of A's.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Thanksgiving plus it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

I was lucky to get some family to visit me for Thanksgiving. Blake had to work all day--6 AM to 8:30 PM. Andrew and Anne came out from Utah. We went to Ted Drewes, of course.

We celebrated Thanksgiving on Wednesday so Blake could eat with us. It was awesome because Thanksgiving we didn't have to cook at all (except making pie and more mashed potatoes) and we ate turkey 3 times. dinner lunch dinner.
Apple pie, Andrew's request.

Candied sweet potatoes were Anne's request.
I love how Blake wears his new Cardinals t-shirt everywhere. We're such fair-weather fans--we've lived here for 4 years but once they won the big one in October, Blake finally got a t-shirt.

We went for a turkey trot with the kids since Blake was working and I couldn't let Andrew and Anne run without me! Usually James is such a peaceful running companion. I love to take just him because he will just sit and watch the cars pass. Isaac will usually complain "I don't want to go to the park! It's too cold, mommy! Goldfish! ..." but ironically during the race Isaac was silent the whole time just watching everyone and the other strollers and dogs and James cried off and on. yes, it's me again, the lady with the crying kids. Sometimes it feels like it's always me. He may have been cold--it was unusually chilly that morning. We took turns pushing the stroller (2 miles each) but it didn't slow down Andrew or Anne at all. I however, am not used to running fast so I was dead when we finished our 6 miles in under an hour. ok, I know that's not fast at all but I was still dying.

My first real race ever!
That afternoon we went for a lovely walk in Forest Park. It's always so lovely there.
I love this--my 6'2" brother stooping over helping 2' tall James walk.
Mouth full of his staple--peanut butter sandwich.

We went to Pappy's (bbq), which was totally worth the 30 minute wait, and went on walks and played games and watched movies. It's always nice to have family in our house --it makes it feel more like home. And it is hard when they leave.

It's getting colder and looking more like Christmas around here. I snapped some pictures of what our home looks around this time.
Blake really wanted a full-size tree this year so we bought the cheapest one we could find to last us a couple years. It does the job.

I've never had stockings since we've never been here for Christmas, but since we're not going to Utah this year, I am making some. One done, three to go. Not sure I'll make it, but as long as we have at least two we'll be good, right?
Isaac is in a backpack phase right now. He stuffs it with stuffed animals and clothes and whatever and he'll pack it all over. I've started leaving his clothes down on the washing machine because I'm so tired of his clothes getting all over the house. He's loving the Christmas season and taking off a link in our countdown chain every day. He makes us laugh when he says things like "Happy Birthday Jesus" or "mommy, you fooled the fire department. you be in time out." (Curious George)

James is still holding on to my hand to walk. I don't mind following him around everywhere but I do think he' not giving himself enough credit because he could totally rock the walking thing. He loves balls and that was his third word--after mom and dad. And now he's becoming enchanted with balloons. He will make a beeline down the hill of our playground to the balloons that say "lease today!". We went to a party yesterday and took a balloon home and he calls it "ba-oo". Cutest. Never gets old.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Happy Halloween from a fish and a skeleton

But first, I want to post a picture I've been meaning to share: This is Isaac, just up from his nap (I know, it's out of focus), having put on five pajama shirts on top of his play shirt, and four pairs of pajama pants on top of his jeans. He's discovered his dresser, since there's nothing else entertaining in his room during nap time.

Ok, so actually I have about a million photos I want to share and it's taken me forever already to get them up in this post, so I want to go to bed now instead of annotating them. So here are many photos with minimal words.

This is a classic James profile.
Grandma Karen came to visit and we went to a little pumpkin farm. Isaac loves his pumpkins and has carried his little one around for two weeks.
Grandma brought a little house to paint. Isaac had tons of fun while I freaked out about potential paint messes.
James wanted to paint too. Or at least get out of his chair.

We went to Boo at the Zoo, the one thing Grandma wanted to do (besides buy Christmas presents.) Isaac was excited to be friends with the animals because who wouldn't want to be friends with a fish? But unfortunately all the animals were in bed.
Mom, I will stand here while you take my picture but I won't be happy about it.
And let's show off the back.

For some reason I didn't dress up James. Why?But he is always very patient in the stroller.
Waiting to get in the zoo and I kept taking pictures because what else was there to do?
Good thing I did, because this is a keeper! Going on the wall as his one-year picture.
We were amazed this didn't freak Isaac out.
And I was there too.
I made Grandma take our pictures for our Christmas card and I tried to snap some pictures of Isaac when we were done. Not gonna happen. The ones I took of James I posted on his birthday. come on, Isaac, let go of the stick and let mom take your picture!
Give me a smile!
Playing in the leaves.
And party time! Here's an excerpt from my journal:
James was a little full so didn't eat too much cake but did make a glorious mess, which was fun to watch. Isaac wouldn't touch his cake at his one year party. He was spoiled with presents and Isaac did so great keeping his distance as much as he could. We had prepared him well that he had to let James play with the toys but James would share with him. He got a music table (G and G Newman), a ride on car (G and G Newman), a real phone, some books, a bus, and a jacket and sweater (Grandma K). I love James so much. He adores me and always wants to be in my arms or have me close by. He likes me to put him to bed, which is good because there's rarely any other option. He eats really well, at least we think so. He eats most vegetables and fruits and lots of what I'm eating. He has a more varied diet than Isaac. He crawls well and pulls up on things, can walk with only one hand helping him, likes to bang drums with the drumsticks, likes to take legos apart and put them together, likes to put toys into baskets, waves hello, claps, says momom, dada, and other gibberish, knows his name, knows Isaac's name, loves his older brother and follows him around and wants to go into his room when he's sleeping. He still has cute reddish hair and still the seven teeth (what an odd number to have stopped on for five months!). We can feel the molars coming in soon. He loves to be outside and does pretty good now not to put sticks and sand into his mouth. He loves to explore the sand box and gives the biggest grin when you let him go down the slide by himself into Isaac's arms. He is a really sweet boy and we're grateful for what he adds to our family, even if some nights are still rough. Happy Birthday!

I love how James will play on his knees sometimes.
The first ride on the car!

We carved the pumpkin with Grandma, which Isaac wasn't too thrilled about at first but then he caught on. Then he loved it and wanted to kiss it.
Thanks, Grandma Karen, for coming to visit! You spoiled us rotten! I didn't take any pictures, but she babysat one saturday while Blake and I spent over six hours at 6 Flags. We've always wanted to go so now was our chance. I have never left my kids that long ever. Except Isaac I guess when I was in the hospital with James but Blake was home then. It was a little traumatic but such a joyful reunion! It was so sweet to see James scramble to me.

Oh, and finally a picture of our little skeleton! (Yes, that was the best picture I could get. This boy is on the move!) We went to our church's trunk or treat last night.

We've also enjoyed having Blake home--he's been on vacation and the "pull list" for two weeks. He got pulled in for a guy who's wife had a baby. I guess that's a good reason but we were annoyed Blake had to spend two days giving a guy paternity leave. But I know we would appreciate it if someone did the same for us. Isaac said the cutest prayer last night:

"...Thankee Daddy not go to work
thankee get candy at church
thankee go to the park
...bwess mommy take care Isaac and James
bwess James sweep well
bwess Isaac go to potty and to share
bwess Daddy not go to work