Thursday, July 31, 2008

A Shout Out to Patty

In honor of Patty's post earlier this month called Christmas In July, I thought I'd share this little tidbit with all of you about the sheer excitement and thrill that is my life. In this exact moment, Maddie and I are having some post-dinner relaxation time after a very eventful day. So, I tell her we can pop a movie in for a little while before she has to make her way to bed.

We have TONS of movies. I mean TONS. I was pushing hard for us to watch Enchanted. It is such a cute movie, or at least what I have pieced together... I've still not seen it from start to end. But, none of the suggestions I was making were met with approval, so I just gave up and told her to pick any one she wanted. Of all of the movies we have, the one she MUST watch tonight is Mickey Mouse Clubhouse: Mickey Saves Santa. Um, ok? It's a little hard to get into the spirit as I sit here in a tank and shorts, but maybe Madison is in on the Christmas in July trend and I just didn't know. She always has been a trend-setter :-)

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

Her shirt says "That's it ... I'm calling my Mimi". Mimi is what my kids (and my nieces) call my Mom. I love this shirt. I especially love it when she is wearing it and getting mad at me, as she was this morning, for doing something as obscene as trying to feed her. I know, I have alot of nerve! I love how this shot captures that "I'm getting angry" finger that she was pointing at me, too.

Happy WW.


Monday, July 28, 2008

"When I was a little baby.."

During our trip to Charleston this weekend, Madison really came out with some hilarious one-liners. She really kept me and my whole family entertained. But, there was one comment that has become the most quoted line of the trip.

We were at my cousin's reception and the evening was winding down. The music was still playing and all of a sudden Madison felt the need to get her groove on. She just got out in the middle of the floor and started dancing her little heart out, no one else was dancing. She asked my sister, my cousin Patrick (her new boyfriend... you should have seen her flirting!), and myself to sit at the tables and watch her "concert" (her dancing). We were telling her how great she was dancing and in her best southern accent (not on purpose, I don't think), she says "When I was a little baby, my MOMMA taught me these dance moves!" It was so HIL-A-RI-OUS! I mean, first, her "Momma"???? She has called me Momma maybe twice in her whole life, and that was only because she heard another child refer to their mother that way. Second, seeing the dance, you would think that Momma must have been drunk or high, or some combo of the two to have shown her those dance moves! Third, how cute is it that she gave "Momma" the credit for her excellent dancing? Too funny.

Mommy and Maddie Weekend

On Thursday, Madison and I left for a long weekend trip to Charleston, SC. We made the trip to Charleston to celebrate my cousin's wedding. He and his wife were married back in February in Las Vegas, and they held a beach party on Friday for all of their family and friends to celebrate their marriage with them.

At first, we intended for all four of us to make the trip for the celebration. However, the more we thought about it, it just wasn't going to be possible for us all to go, especially given McKenna's sleep schedule. It was definitely a bummer that we all couldn't go together, but both Matt and I agree that an awesome side benefit of this arrangement was that we each got to spend alot of one-on-one time with each of the girls. So, Daddy and McKenna had a great weekend at home, and Mommy and Madison had a great weekend visiting with Mommy's side of the family, going to Ryan and Jessie's wedding reception, touring Charleston, and (Maddie's favorite part) getting to swim alot in the hotel pool!

Another highlight for Madison was the plane ride. My sister flew with us and Madison was so excited to be with her Aunt Erin and to be flying in a plane. You couldn't wipe the smile off of her face! We all stayed at a hotel together, and Madison and I got to share a hotel room with my Grandmother. I was so excited that we got to spend 3 days with Madison's Gigi. My grandmother (Gigi) lives in Baltimore and we don't get to see her as much as we'd like to, so it was a really special treat for both of us. And, of course, spending time with Mimi and Pop-Pop (my Mom and Dad) is ALWAYS on the top of Madison's favorite to-do list! They were in the hotel room next door to us, so it was so fun for Maddie to just go next door whenever she wanted a Mimi and Pop-Pop fix! In fact, they dropped us off at the airport in Charleston on Sunday to catch our flight home, and within 10 seconds (literally) of us being inside the airport, Madison said "I miss Mimi and Pop-pop".

Despite all of the fun we had, Maddie did miss her daddy and her sister. Periodically, she would just blurt out "I miss Daddy and McKenna". She is so cute. Although, it seemed whenever we had Daddy on the phone, she didn't really take the time to talk to him too much :-) Isn't that always the way? I missed Matt and McKenna too. I spotted them walking into the airport to pick us up and I bolted over to them while my sister watched Madison. I almost kissed McKenna's face off!

All in all, a great time was had by all.

Congrats to Ryan and Jessie! A big thank you to my Aunt MaryAnn for being our tour guide. Another big thank you to my parents for being our chauffeurs all over town. And, a huge thanks to hubby for agreeing to this girls getaway for Maddie and I. I had such a great time being with her!

Happy Birthday, My Love!

My husband celebrated his birthday this weekend.... without Madison and I. We were away enjoying our weekend in Charleston, while he was holding down the home front with McKenna. While I am sure our 9 month old was awesome birthday company, I really wish we could have been here to help him celebrate. We tried to make up for it by sending him some flowers and we all (including my Mom, Dad, Grandmom, and Aunt) sang him Happy Birthday over the phone, but it's not quite the same. We are having a Birthday BBQ for him next weekend, so we will certainly celebrate, it will just be a little delayed.

Matt, I love you so much. You are a perfect husband and perfect father. We wish you the happiest of Happy Birthdays and thank you for being OK with us going away on your Birthday!


Ok, so here is my PSA (Public Service Announcement) for our local CSA (Community Supported Agriculture). My interest in living a more organic/natural life is relatively new. I've been interested on the sidelines for a few years now, but have really started to make more substantive changes in our buying and consumption habits in the last year. This season is the first time we are participating in a CSA. We've purchased a share in the CSA, a locally owned and operated farm, and in return for that share, we go to the farm each week to pick up our family's fresh produce for the week. Our particular CSA has had a few hiccups this year in terms of farm staff, but that has not tarnished my belief in the CSA model at all. Overall, I could not be happier that we are doing this... eating organic produce and participating in a more sustainable lifestyle! What could be better. I don't think I will ever go back to buying our produce at the grocery store (at least not in the growing season).

Here are some pictures of the girls at the farm:

Bloggy Backup

Madison and I left last Thursday for a long weekend to Charleston, SC. So sorry for the silence around here, but between prepping for that trip and having an action packed weekend, there hasnt been any time to blog. I have a couple of posts backing up in my head, and will try to post them ASAP so I dont forget anything that I really wanted to say here.

Hope everyone had a great weekend!


Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Shameless Bragging

Some shameless bragging about Madison follows. Read this post with that in mind :-)

So, Madison is currently going to a 3 week summer camp at the preschool that she attends. Her camp teacher is someone that she has met only a few times. This teacher had subbed in her preschool class a few times last year when Maddie's regular teacher was out sick. At the end of last week, as I was dropping Maddie off in the morning, her camp teacher approached me and told me what "beautiful manners" Madison has. She said she was really impressed about how polite and well-mannered Madison was with her and with her peers.

Now, I know that Madison is a good kid. Really, I do know that. But, it is a great feeling to have someone tell me that she is being a good, kind, polite person with adults and peers, even when I am not around to remind her to do that!

Good job, Madison. You make me so proud.


Mom, Stop Snoring!

So, last night Maddie went to bed really well, and after about a half hour of no calls from her, I thought we were home free. Not so much!

Around 8:45pm, she called out for us. I was upstairs in my bedroom putting laundry away, so I headed to her room to see what she wanted. She looks at me straight in the face and this is how the conversation goes:

Madison: "Your snoring is waking me up, Mom!"

Me: "Madison, I wasn't snoring."

Madison: "Yes, you were."

Me: "Madison, I promise you I wasn't snoring. I am still awake. Now, this isn't funny. You now will not be able to play on your swingset tomorrow, and if you call out again, something else will get taken away. I love you. Goodnight."

Madison: "Mom?"

Me: "Yes, Maddie?"

Madison: "Do you ever snore?"

Me: "Yes, Madison, once in a while I do snore. Now goodnight!"

Madison: "Well, could you stop snoring? It is waking me up!"

It was all I could do to not start bursting out in laughter while I was still in her doorway. I went downstairs to share the story with Matt and we both had a good laugh! She is getting VERY creative.


Monday, July 21, 2008

She's pulling out ALL the stops now!

I am knocking on wood right now as I type this .... both of my kids are good sleepers. Madison, in particular, is a fantastic sleeper. With the exception of the first four months of her life, Madison has pretty much gone to bed every night thereafter with no fuss, no argument, no nothing. We follow our bedtime routine, we kiss goodnight, we leave, and she sleeps.

A few weeks ago, however, Madison started calling out for us to come up to her room. She will do this 1 - 3 times during the first hour she is in bed. Her needs when she calls out range from having to go potty, needing a drink, wanting a snuggle, needing socks put on her feet, or wanting to say "I Love You" one last time. Given that all of those things are part of our bedtime routine, there is absolutely no reason for her to call out for these things once its lights-out. Basically, she is searching for things to need so that she gets our attention. I am not sure what started this whole thing, but it is getting tiresome and I want to nip it in the bud. I get particularly salty about this issue when she says she has to go potty (a request she knows we wont refuse), then sits on the toilet and says "You know what, maybe I didn't have to go potty" (which I could have predicted given that she had just gone 5 minutes earlier before we put her to bed!).

Anyway, last night, she called out for us after about 10 minutes after she had gone to bed. I went up to see what she needed and she said, "Mommy, I just wanted to tell you I love you again". Now, it's hard to get upset about her wanting to share her love, but this whole business needs to be stopped, so I tried to stay firm. I tell her that I love her so much too, but that she told me when she went to sleep, and she isn't supposed to call out anymore, yadda, yadda, yadda.... If she calls out again, something will be taken away from her. Goodnight.

Another 10 minutes goes by and she calls out again. This time Matt goes up. She wants a snuggle. Matt tells her that she got a snuggle before she went to sleep, that it is time for sleep, that we expect her to STOP calling out and GO TO BED! She can have a snuggle in the morning. Then the tears start rolling and she cries " I JUST WANT SOMEONE TO LOVE ME!" OMG, this is the guilt trip of all guilt trips and it is being perfectly executed by a 3 and a half year old. I swear that Drama should have been her middle name! Although it is somewhat infuriating that she thinks she can just play us like violins, it is also very interesting about how advanced her manipulation skills are :-) I was proud that hubby stood firm and told her we loved her but she couldn't have a snuggle right now and she needed to go to sleep. But, part of me just wanted to run up there and snuggle the heck out of that little cutie, even though it wasn't the right thing to do :-)

Anyone have any thoughts on how to break the calling out cycle?

Sunday, July 20, 2008

It's Playtime!

Our long awaited playset has arrived and was set up in our back yard yesterday. Madison is soooo very excited as you can imagine. We still need to put the mulch under the set, which will happen this week, but that didn't stop us from testing it out last night. Here are the kids trying out the playset!

I'm looking forward to lots of fun times out in the yard with the kids! And to getting a few swings in myself :-)

McKenna is 9 months

Yesterday, McKenna was 9 months old. She's getting so big, and I can't wait to see how she measures up at her 9 month appointment, which we couldnt schedule until early August because our pediatrician is on vacay. To mark the occassion (or maybe just because we were hungry :-)), we went and grabbed some dinner with her friend Caden and his mommy! Here are some pics of my little love bug and her buddy:


Frozen Peas!

I am so excited that McKenna is now enjoying more and more table foods. The pureed food is really getting boring for both of us. One of her new favorites are frozen peas... feels good on teething gums and taste yummy! Here she is enjoying her peas. Notice that she will not let go of her ducky to eat her dinner :-)


Thursday, July 17, 2008

Hey Aetna.... You Stink!

Hey Insurance-Giant Aetna....

Guess what?!?!? YOU STINK!

Given that we've been on our new Aetna policy for a whopping 17 days now, this was NOT the way I was expecting our new relationship to go, you know what I mean?

Now, I want you to take a look at something.... See this child, right here ???

She's a cutie, huh? Yeah, I think so too. Look, she's got reflux, ok? I know the GI doc has sent you all of her medical records, so we cant really dispute this fact, now can we? And, we've been treating the reflux really well for the last several months with Prilosec which, by the way, Blue Cross never had an issue paying for. Now, we are at a little bit of a crossroads right now trying to figure out some dosing issues to manage her reflux the most effectively. And, at this exact moment is when you are going to tell me that you wont pay for the Prilosec that has been really effective at treating her for the last 8 months??? Um, I'm sorry, but I really can't accept that as an answer. Yes, you tell me that the Prevacid is a comparable option and you will pay for that. But, if you see the above picture again, is it really fair to ask this little cutie's body to try to figure out what is going on with her coughing and congestion and her medication dosing levels, while at the same time switiching her meds altogether to something that's cheaper for you? I DONT THINK SO. If you cant tell, I am angry and you can expect a call about this from me.



Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Feeling a little verclemt

Imagine my surprise this morning when I checked out Kelly's blog at A Rainbow After the Rain and saw this:

Thank you so much for this lovely honor, Kelly. I have only been blogging for about a month, and am having sooo much fun. This will just inspire me to blog even more. It's nice to know at least a few people like reading my blog :-) Yay!

Upon winning this award you are tasked with the following rules…

You have to pick 5 blogs that you consider deserve this award for their creativity, design, interesting material, and also for contributing to the blogging community, no matter what language.

Each award has to have the name of the author and also a link to his or her blog to be visited by everyone.

Each award winner has to show the award and put the name and link to the blog that has given her or him the award itself.

Award-winner and the one who has given the prize have to show the link of “Arte y Pico” blog, so everyone will know the origin of this award.

With that said, here are my 5 award nominees:

Jenn at But Wait It Gets Better - she is a really great friend to me and her blog is awesome. Besides, don't you love how she refers to her little cutie pie as Funky Chicken? Too cool!

Amy at ...and baby makes four - she is sincerely one of the nicest women you will ever meet and I love keeping up with her family on her cool blog.

Sarah at These Are the Days - Ummm... what is there to say about Sarah? She has the energy of about 10 of me and I am so inspired by her creativity! Sarah just makes me smile whenever I am with her or reading her blog.

Yvonne at Our Little Ladies - Yvonne is a fantastic writer and you'll love reading her insightful blog about life with her two ADORABLE little girls.

Lori at avocado8 - She and I are friends from our birthing class when Maddie and her Beaner were born. Although we don't get to see each other or talk "live" very often anymore, I love keeping up with her fun and interesting life on her blog.

Congrats everyone!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Dinner is Served

Madison wanted to help feed McKenna her dinner tonight and it was too cute. Just thought I'd share!

It is so much fun to watch them interact with each other. I know there will be the "Mom, she stole my favorite pair of jeans" moments in the future. But, I really hope their loving bond continues forever and always.


Back to Square 1?

McKenna has had a pretty significant case of acid reflux since birth, including a PETRIFYING experience the night we brought her home from the hospital that caused her to turn blue and for us to call 911! At any rate, the reflux was diagnosed pretty early in her life after we had to take her for a Swallow Study. She has been on reflux meds since then, and with just a little bit of dosing modification here and there, she has been fine overall.

At her last GI appointment in June, she had been doing so well for the last 3 months, we decided it would be appropriate to "challenge" the amount of medicine she was taking to see if she was ready to be weaned off the medicine altogether, or at least to a lower dose. I want her to be healthy, but I also want to make sure I am giving her the least amount of meds needed to be effective. I was very happy about this plan, and she has been doing very well with the lower dose... or so I thought until yesterday.

McKenna has had a persistent cough and rattling sound in her chest for about 2 weeks now. I took her to the doctors yesterday and got her checked out. The pediatrician thinks that it is very unlikely that cough is related to any type of virus or other infection. He thinks it is related to her reflux. As soon as he said that, a light bulb went off! Why didnt I think of that!!! That makes so much sense to me and I cant beleive I didnt put 2 and 2 together. When she was little and we were just getting diagnosed and trying out different meds, those were exactly her symptoms (besides the actual spit up).... she sounded like she had bad chest congestion and a cough!

So, we need to go back to her full dose of the meds now and test the theory that this has to do with her meds being cut back. I am so bummed that we may be headed back there. I was really hoping she had outgrown her reflux and was ready to start being weaned. I just dont want her to take any more meds than she needs to. But, if she needs them, then she needs them and I will gladly give them to her. I'll be interested to see how this little test goes over the next 2 weeks. If it isnt related to the reflux, she'll need to be sent for chest x-rays.... ugh!


Sunday, July 13, 2008

Handsome Little Man...

My very good friend Stephanie delivered her beautiful baby boy on June 23rd, but I havent been able to go meet him until today. It was so nice to get to meet Connor Paul. What a cute little guy! Congrats to Steph and Paul!

Hershey Park Happiness...

Yesterday, Matt and I took Madison to Hershey Park for Matt's new company's summer picnic. Despite the heat, we had the most amazing day! Madison is a ride-lover. She adores going to the rides on the boardwalk each year and really enjoyed our trip last year to Dutch Wonderland. Even though she loves rides, I had some reservations about Hershey Park because the have many more "big" rides than the other places we've been that seem to focus on more "kiddie" rides.

At Hershey Park, they label each of their rides according to height and name each of those levels a different Hershey's candy. Well, Maddie measured up as a Reese's Peanut Butter Cup and to my surprise SEVERAL of their roller coasters were labeled for Reese's. Are you ready for this.... even the Super Dooper Looper!?!? Yes, we did ... I know you are wondering..... we did let our 3.5 year old go on the Super Dooper Looper. Am I CRAZY (don't answer that, anyone!)? She was just sooooo excited, never a single hint of fear, only pure excitement and laughter and happiness on every coaster she rode yesterday.

I was seriously concerned about letting my 3.5 year old on the Super Dooper Looper. It goes upside down for crying out loud! But she was very persistent, she was above the required height requirement, and my hubby wanted to take her on as badly as she wanted to go. So, off we all went to the SDL. And, you know what? It is a memory I will have with me for years and years. I got to sit with her on the SDL, Matt was behind us. The WHOLE time she was laughing, screaming "This is so awesome", throwing her arms up in the air, and had a smile plastered all over her face. Not once was she ever hesitant, fearful or anything less than just purely ecstatic to be riding. It was something to behold. She has some fears about several things, but amusement parks and water parks are not things she is scared of.

Here is Madison with Matt getting ready to ride the Comet roller coaster. This was her first ride on a "big girl" roller coaster and she loved every moment of it!

After we rode in the park for a while, we headed over to their water park and had just as much fun! We had a fantastic time on the log flume, the tube rides, and the large water play area. We were exhausted by the end of the day, but well worth it. It was so nice to have some one-on-one time with Madison and spend the whole day laughing and playing with each other.

And, thanks to Mimi for coming to spend the day with McKenna so we could take Maddie. We really appreciate it! And, McKenna loved her special day with her Mimi too!


ok, my BB withraw is officially over! Thank goodness that I popped over to Kelly's blog and she reminded me that the new season started tonight. I had completely forgotten!!!! I get to sit here and watch my favorite guilty pleasure tv show and write a few blog posts. Yay!

All you other BB fans, let's hear from you!


Friday, July 11, 2008

Half Birthday!

Today is Maddie's half birthday. She is officially 3 and a half, even though we've been saying she's 3 and a half for a while now! So, Happy Half Birthday to my charming, sweet, sensitive, funny, silly, intelligent, and adorable little Madison. She is getting so big, so quickly and I have to keep reminding myself to just hold on to every little moment because they'll be gone before I know it. Sigh :-(


Organization to the Extreme?

I am going to start this post by saying that having a second child has been fantastic! Never once have I regretted it or been anything less than totally ecstatic that McKenna is in our lives. That being said, however, I won't deny that it has been just a little bit tricky for me to get this whole "Mom of 2" thing down pat. While I feel that life is starting to return to more of a "normal" (whatever that is!) state, it feels like, to me, that having the 2nd child has been more than double the workload.

In the last few months of taking care of 2 kids and learning to give them both what they need, some things have been slipping through the cracks more than I would like. There are some household tasks that are "mine" that I haven't exactly been on top of, like paying the bills on time (I was late with the car payment and with the credit card payment on 2 separate occasions!) and keeping up with some chores, especially the laundry and keeping groceries stocked in the house. It was all really just feeling out of control and we were flying by the seat of our pants a little too much. I would just attack things when they got too stressful (or the laundry pile had gotten too tall... that just made me think of Kelly's post at A Rainbow After the Rain). So, I devised a plan.

I now have a schedule for some of my household chores. And, to say that out loud sounds totally ridiculous and much more complicated than someone's life should be.... I realize that. But, to me, it has made life so much less stressful and made our house run more smoothly! See I would just live knowing that the laundry was piling up, or the bills needed to be paid, and stress about it. But, the stress wasn't helping take action on it, it was making me feel overwhelmed. So now, I know don't have to worry about the laundry today.... it isn't laundry day.... no need to spend another minute thinking about it!

So, Tuesday is now the day that bills get paid and Thursday is the day that the laundry gets done. I know it sounds totally over the top... but it is working out so well for me!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

To my dear husband... I AM SO SORRY!

yeah... so the morning went pretty well (see post below) but the afternoon is NOT off to a great start.

i am a little bit of a safety freak (shari and jenn ... i hear you both laughing right now!). i keep our windows and doors locked at all times. When the windows are open (which they often are not open due to some severe seasonal allergies that hubby and I have developed), i feel the need to be on the same floor as the open windows. i will not leave ANY windows open when we aren't in the house, not even the 2nd floor. i am the person that locks the car inside the locked garage. so, it will come as no surprise that i have never considered the whole hiding a key outside thing. always seemed like i could never hide it in a place that some intruder couldn't find it. we do have one friend and a few family members that have keys to our house and i've never thought twice about needing any other back up plans... until today.

yes, i locked myself and my two sweet, unsuspecting children out of the house today. i absent-mindedly switched the lock to the garage door behind me when the big waterloo gardens truck pulled into my driveway and i went out to find out what was going on.... i havent ordered anything from them. they were trying to make a delivery to the former owner. well, guess what WG.... she hasnt lived here in 4 years. May be time to update your records, ya think?

the great news is that i had both of the kids with me... i would have been a complete mess if one or both were locked inside the house without me. the bad news is that neither maddie or i had shoes on, i didn't have my cell phone and it was nap time!

so, off to our fantastic (and retired - a bonus) neighbor's house to use the phone. call matt at work and on cell - no luck. call friends that have key on chance someone is home - no luck. call brother-in-law who has key in case he has to work a late shift today - no luck. keep calling hubby's cell until i finally get him. no one can help us out, so he has to come home. this is matt's first day back to work since vacation and i know he has a mountain of things to do today.

Matt... I'm sorry I'm an idiot and a safety freak! Thanks for coming to the rescue.

After naps I am headed to Lowes or Home Depot to get a key made. I am still not down with the idea of hiding a key, but I do trust our neighbors and will be giving them a key to hold for us in case of emergency. But, hopefully, my brain will return one of these days and this will never happen again!

Disaster Averted!

Today was Madison's 2nd appointment at the dentists office. I wouldnt call the first appointment a complete disaster, but it certainly could have gone better. There were tears and I needed to lay in the chair with her to get her teeth cleaned/checked. So, I wasnt holding out alot of hope that today was going to go smoothly.... in fact, I expected worse since she knew what to expect. In fact, I didnt tell Madison that she was going to the dentist today until last night, just so that we wouldnt have to agonize about it for days and days. When I told her last night, she merely said "but, I dont like the denstist." When I told her we needed to go every 6 months to keep our teeth healthy, she just said "ok" and went to bed. This morning, she told Matt that she was going to be brave at the dentists office.... and, boy, was she ever!

She hopped right up in the chair, picked out her toothpaste and flouride flavors, laughed with the dental hygienist, and was a total rock star! This was awesome in and of itself, but even more welcome and totally helpful to me as I was at the beginning stages of a migraine! ugh! So nice to not have to manage my headache, a baby, and a crying pre-schooler at the dental office!

Just goes to show what 6 months can do at this age to improve maturity and their fear responses to things! Good job, my little shiny-tooth girl! So, off to Chic-Fil-A we went for a celebratory lunch! A dreaded trip to the dentists office turned out to be a really enjoyable morning for us!

And, I am not getting any compensation for this, but I want to send a huge shout-out to Chester County Dentistry for Children. The staff is completely awesome there and Dr. Jeff is fantastic. I love his non-alarmist views on things (we have a thumb-sucking habit that needs to be broken). He really has a great approach with me and with Maddie and I coulndt recommend them any more fully!

Monday, July 7, 2008

Lucky Strike

Yesterday, we wanted to do something fun together as a family. Because we came back from vacation on Saturday, Sunday was one of those rare weekend days when we were home and had no plans, so we wanted to capitalize on one more day of family time. The weather forecast was calling for some rain and thunderstorms and it was generally pretty grey and overcast in the morning. We really wanted to go to the zoo, since we have an awesome membership package there thanks to my parents! But, we were afraid to drive all the way down there just to have to turn around because of the rain.

A few months ago on a cold winter Saturday, we took Madison bowling, and it might have been one of the best Saturday afternoons we've ever spent together. We had so much fun! So, we decided to go bowling again yesterday, and once again, we had a fantastic time. The best thing of all was that Madison got her first STRIKE! And, even better was that I actually had my camera out at that exact moment and got a pic of it! YAY! Here are some highlights:

I Love Bowling!

This is actually the pose just before she rolled her first strike! I love the ball ramps that they have for the kiddos to use. So much easier than teaching them to roll the ball on the floor between their legs.

Just before the ball hit the strike. Yay Madison!

Mommy even took a picture of the score board as proof. See her strike in Frame 5!

In other news, during our trip to the beach, McKenna started trying to mimick some of the things that our friend Caden can do (they are only 5 weeks apart in age). Well, Caden can clap his hands really well and looks so adorable doing it. And, McKenna has been trying hard to clap her hands. However, she's been struggling with keeping her hands open and her palms flat. She tries to clap with her hands clenched it fists, almost as if she was making the "more" sign that we have taught her.

While we were bowling, McKenna got her clapping down pat.... What a cute time to perfect it. She was our own little cheering section. Here she is:

Palms open....

And there's the clap!

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Sun, Sand, and Sickness....

We just returned from a week of vacation in Ocean City, NJ. Overall, the trip was truly fantastic. However, there were a few rough spots that we had to get through. The highlights include spending a week with our very good friends Kristin, Ed, and Caden (who also happens to be a certain someone's Godson... love you, buddy!), seeing McKenna and Caden (who are only 5 weeks apart in age) play, babble, smile, and steal toys from each other, enjoying the PERFECT weather all week long, watching McKenna dip her toes in the ocean for the very first time, seeing Maddie ride on the kiddie roller coaster and kiddie log flume ALL BY HERSELF (gah!), taking the kids to the water park, shopping on the boardwalk, Madison wanting to go "belly skating" in the ocean with Matt, the 4th of July fireworks and best of all spending the week with Matt! The lowlights were the nasty stomach bug that went throught the house and hit most of us for about 24 hours each (luckily Matt and McKenna were spared the wrath), the one night we spent awake with Maddie because of said stomach bug, and the next night we spent awake with McKenna whose reason was unknown (teeth, cold/runny nose, diaper rash... who knows?).

Here are a few pics of some of my favorite moments:

Beach Baby

My sweet Madison

Mmmm... ice cream!

First dip in the ocean..... not too happy :-) (It was very cold!)

Kristin and Caden

My girls

And my favorite pic of all. Thanks to Aunt Kristin for snapping the pic and to Uncle Ed for standing behind the flip flops to prop McKenna up in the picture!

The flip-flop family

Now its back to catching up on life and catching up on sleep! Back to posting regularly soon... g'night.

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