Archive for November, 2014

Christmas Decorating

Sunday, November 30th, 2014
Maia and Mama enjoying the lights =)

Maia and Mama enjoying the lights =)

December Daily begins tomorrow!!! We did a lot of decorating today, and we are all definitely in the mood now for Christmas! We put up the tree and admired all the beautiful ornaments, many of which were made by the kids or by friends and family. Donovan declared several “adorable.” Serenity asked if we could make new ornaments. I wasn’t quite ready for that today but I’m thrilled that she wants to do it! Maia, of course, was fascinated by the new addition to the living room. We were very careful to put non-breakable things in her reach. We also got the stockings and the advent calendar up, and that inspired me to clean and mop the downstairs, so everything is lovely!

 

I put each child's special ornaments in their own tubs so they could easily find favorites that they made or that had their pictures.  DZ wanted to hang Barrett up too =)

I put each child’s special ornaments in their own tubs so they could easily find favorites that they made or that had their pictures. DZ wanted to hang Barrett up too =)

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Serenity and Eric love changing my JOY to  YOJ =)

Serenity and Eric love changing my JOY to YOJ =)

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Serenity is into photobombing now.  She's particularly proud of this one =)  Slow shutter speed =)

Serenity is into photobombing now. She’s particularly proud of this one =) Slow shutter speed =)

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I actually remembered to buy lights for the outside last year when they went on sale, since we discovered after we hung them that the old snowflake lights were burned out. We wanted more this year thanks to the new flower bed though, so the flowering crabapple is covered in lights, as well as the butterfly bushes. And the inflatable Santa we won at a party at Tom’s house is still one of our favorite things!

 

Watching Santa inflate

Watching Santa inflate

One of my favorite things already this year is our little reading corner. I’ve been keeping a variety of books on the windowsill downstairs, and today I traded them all out for winter and Christmas books. Donovan and Maia sat with me and read so many books today, and Serenity and her friend next door joined in as well!

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After the kids went to bed, I got out our DIY Lego advent calendar. Serenity got a Lego advent calendar last year that she loved, and she’s asked several times this year if we could do it again. And last year DZ had a playmobil advent set with horses that was fun, and now he’s really into legos too. Well, getting two Lego advents was pricey, and the pieces you get in those sets aren’t that reusable. So this year I bought one big kit and Eric and I split it between the two kids and divided it into daily activities. I’m really excited, because we could customize it so on days we have school we put simple things like the minifigures, and on the weekends we will have more to do. And some of the days are complicated enough that I think Eric and I will get to play too! =) We got the Lego Creator winter carousel.

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Maia is Eleven Months Old!

Sunday, November 23rd, 2014

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In the last week Maia has gotten so FAST! She can climb up the stairs! Fortunately, the day she discovered this, Donovan shouted “Maia’s on the stairs!” the second she touched the stairs and he went right up behind her so she couldn’t fall. I’m so happy she has such a great big brother to look out for her. She can stand without holding on to anything, and she does for long periods of times. At the discovery lab she stood staring at an animatronic dinosaur for thirty seconds at a time! And she doesn’t need anything to pull up on. She’s only taken a tiny, halting step, mostly she just stands still. She doesn’t really want to walk holding onto hands either, it seems like she wants to do it all herself when she’s ready. She can crawl like lightning though! Sometimes it’s still a crazy half-scoot half-crawl maneuver but it gets her where she’s going!

 

She has also started eating serious meals. She ate two entire cheesy breadsticks from Papa Johns. That same day she’d been unusually fussy. I think she was trying to say, “Feed me you crazy people. I’m HUNGRY!!!” She also ate several strawberries and blueberries, and crackers at that same meal. She still has trouble keeping the purees in her mouth, so they’re very messy! I end up spreading yogurt on toast for her. She loves peas, broccoli, peaches, blueberries, toast, cheerios, pizza, and penne with butter. Strawberries are her favorite though.

 

She’s still on the verge of talking. She’s repeated DZ, and tweet, and possibly crackers this morning. John heard that too so I’m not crazy =) But she doesn’t do it reliably yet.

 

She absolutely loves books. She will sit and listen as long as someone is reading. She especially loves Dotty, Jamberry, Pajama Time, and Snuggle Puppy. I sing snuggle puppy to her to get her to sleep at night =) She still chews books too, and now loves to crawl over to the basket of books I have on the windowsill and pull them down.

 

11/13

Maia can walk! She took her first few steps today chasing after Barrett’s dog Forrest. She took single steps yesterday going for the busy ball popper, but today is the first day she took multiple steps in a row. Then she dives forward and does her crazy scoot/crawl. =)

 

Maia is still nursing, but I’m very aware it’s not for much longer. She wants to snuggle and nurse when she wakes up and when she falls asleep. Sometimes it’s a sweet cuddle, where she’s just warm and cozy in my arms. Sometimes it’s a workout, as she tries to practice standing and nursing, which usually ends up with her in a downward dog position and me hoping she won’t bite. But I’m very glad I got to nurse my babies, and the thought of being done with that forever is sad. So I want to remember it even if there are times I wish I wasn’t her only pacifier =)

 

11/18

Maia is 11 months old today! She’s been sick the last few days so I’m not going to subject her to a photo session this morning. =) I’ll give her a day or two, maybe wait to post this until I do get the monthly pic in. She’s had a hard time sleeping the last few days, and I have so missed the baby swing. She wants to sleep flat, and after a few hours of that her nose is stuffy and she just can’t get comfortable. Last night she woke up around 10:30 and after a long session in the steam, nose spray and some ibuprofen she finally managed to get a long stretch of sleep. In Mama’s bed, but she even stayed asleep when I had to get up to take the kids to school, so Eric stayed with her while I made the school run. I’m so glad she finally got caught up a bit! And me too =)   She’s gotten addicted to Sesame Street during this last illness, since she finds it comforting and tired Mamas and Daddies have to do what they must when they’ve had no sleep!

 

She definitely says DZ now, and I’ve heard her say Bye-bye, cracker, and this morning she said Bye bye Dada. =) She’s so excited to see Eric when he gets home from work. They are adorable =) She definitely knows what we are talking about even though she only has a few words. When she’s struggling against sitting in her high chair, I can say, “do you want strawberries?” and she’ll get very still and let me buckle her in. Also usually works for “cracker.” So most meals start with a strawberry or a ritz cracker =) I can also ask if she wants to see Serenity or DZ and she’ll look around for them until she finds them. She loves her siblings and she enjoys them even more now that she’s so mobile! She finds it hilarious when they crawl with her, or when they’re running around her.

 

She is always ready for books! If she’s fussy, she’ll quiet right away. She especially loves Jamberry, Dotty, Snuggle Puppy, and Have you Tickled a Tiger. She’s demolished Barnyard Dance now, along with Pajama Time and Ten in the Bed. =)

 

She is walking even better these days. She still really doesn’t want to walk holding onto hands, though. I don’t know if it’s because she’s just that independent, or if she hasn’t realized she could go faster with some support, or if we just don’t offer to help her walk all that often as no one is in a hurry for the baby to start running =)

 

Ann bought her the most darling little dress that will be perfect for her birthday. I think I’ll save it for her 12 month photos since I’m doing a different outfit each month. I feel like she has more hair than I’m used to. It’s a bit darker which might be why it seems different, but I think it’s thicker too. She’s getting a tiny bit of curl, but both Serenity and DZ had curl at this age so it could be mostly straight like Serenity or crazy curly like DZ, just have to wait another year to find out =)

I already posted lots of pics from the first two weeks of her 11th month, in my posts about the Pumpkin Patch, Disney, Ann and John’s visit, and Halloween.  So I only have a few more to share =)

Reading with Serenity =)

Reading Jamberry with Serenity =)

Her first trip up the stairs, guarded by DZ

Her first trip up the stairs, guarded by DZ

Crawling with DZ is silly fun =)

Crawling with DZ is silly fun =)

With her friend Katherine at the pumpkin patch field trip

With her friend Katherine at the pumpkin patch field trip

Super Maia!

Super Maia!

Reading with Vanaema. =)

Reading Dotty with Vanaema. =)

Her first Disney trip =)  I love that she slept in the front carrier two more times.  So snuggly!  I posted tons more pictures of Disney in a previous post.

Her first Disney trip =) I love that she slept in the front carrier two more times. So snuggly! I posted tons more pictures of Disney in a previous post. do

 

 

Donovan in October

Sunday, November 9th, 2014

 

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Donovan can outlast just about anyone at UNO. Eric one day tried to outlast him and he just kept asking to play again and again. It’s wonderful! He pays really good attention, knows when he has numbers that match and colors that match. He is happy when someone plays a draw two on him. He usually says, “I LIKE that!” He says “averse” instead of reverse. It’s so cute.

 

Oh, and he says “buh-member” still instead of remember.

 

DZ is such a great brother. Maia learned to climb the stairs, and the second she first touched the stair he yelled for us and followed right behind her to make sure she didn’t fall. He loves to crawl with her to make her giggle. And we also play tag. I run carrying Maia and he chases us until they are both full of giggles. =)

 

Donovan's first Jogathon!  He did five laps =)

Donovan’s first Jogathon! He did five laps =)

DZ and his friend Max at the fall festival downtown

DZ and his friend Max at the fall festival downtown

He loves riding horses!

He loves riding horses!

Playdoh fun =)

Playdoh fun =)

Maia learned to climb stairs!  Donovan shouted for us the second she touched the stairs and went right up behind her to keep her from falling.  Such a great big brother!

Maia learned to climb stairs! Donovan shouted for us the second she touched the stairs and went right up behind her to keep her from falling. Such a great big brother!

DZ loves to make Maia giggle by crawling with her.  He also plays tag with her.  I hold Maia and run and he chases us =)

DZ loves to make Maia giggle by crawling with her. He also plays tag with her. I hold Maia and run and he chases us =)