Sisters, friends, blessed.

Monday, February 28, 2011

Mom & Da-yad

As the girls excitedly waited for Grandma & Grandpa to arrive this Saturday, Piper turned to me and asked, "Are you SO e(x)cited to see you mom and da-yad?"  I was; probably as excited as they were, to be honest.  During the long winter days as a stay-at-home-mom, nothing quite seems as welcoming as a weekend at home with a visit from Mom & Dad!  And I got just that. 
We had lots of good reading fun snuggled up together.  Followed by a special cardboard playhouse they brought along for the girls to color! You can see them hard at work below. I'm not sure who had more fun, as everyone seemed to enjoy getting out the crayons & markers!

I only posted the next picture, because we all found it so hilarious that Piper thought she needed to physically push (with both hands) the adults into the teeny playhouse.  Sorry in advance, Mom, but you do have such a cute behind!

We also had dinner out that night, and while the restaurant was quite loud and the food was just okay, the girls were certainly entertained and thoroughly enjoyed it all. (As witnessed by Piper dancing in her seat, not because of music but because eating out with Grandma & Grandpa is just that good!)
It was so lovely to wake up the next morning and enjoy breakfast together before they headed back to MN.  Thanks again, Mom & Dad, we loved having you overnight!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

A Buzz

Our house was all a buzz this weekend.  Happily a buzz!  My brother Mike, his wife Jill, and their three kiddos made the trip from MN to spend some quality time with us.  Great fun was had by all, kids & adults alike!  We ventured out to our land for a good old fashioned sledding adventure, and was it ever a hoot.  Thankfully, the early week thaw had not melted all of the snow, but what it left behind had a new and very slippery crust on top.  Let's just say that the trip down was a speedy one, and required some serious 'leg braking' at the bottom so you didn't catapult into the tree line below!  Don't worry, Dad, safety always came first, but laughter was close second! (Hadley, Mikey, Savannah, & Brooklyn)

All four little girls went wizzing down several times, but Jeremiah went down the most times!  He went down on his own slippery set of snowpants, and loved every minute of it.  Mike did manage to corral him into his sled once, but quickly returned to his own methods afterward.

Savannah (1.25), Jeremiah (3.5), Hadley (4.25), Piper (2.5), Brooklyn (5.25)

The kids played hard together until bedtime (Savvy looks like she might fall asleep nestled among everyone!). 

And, they all woke (early) this morning ready to play again! Unfortunately, with a nasty blizzard on top of us, Mike readied his family quickly and made a safe but treacherous drive back home. Both Hadley & Piper waved as they drove out of sight, but were nearly in tears now that the much anticipated visit was finally over. I think we'll have to do it again, very soon!

Sunday, February 13, 2011


Anyone else been saying, "Ahhhhh" today?  What an incredible spring, I mean winter day it is!  We hustled home from church this morning so we could hit a neighboring snow hill before it became inundated with sliders.  We were anything but cold as we hiked back up the hill each time.  And sunglasses were a must with all of that bright shiny snowy sunshine out there!  What a perfect Sunday.

I really enjoyed standing back and watching Hadley take on the new snow hill with out a fear today.  Last winter we had to literally bribe her with toasted marshmallows to go down with us, and now she was begging to try it by herself.  She even convinced Kyle to try the moguls on the next hill over with her.  She came racing over to me afterwards with a grin from ear to ear and told me, "It hurt my butt a lot, Mom, but it was really, really fun!"  I caught the next time on video...


We spent the last part of the week anxiously getting ready for our dear friend, Emilee's shower.  The girls were thrilled to be showering Emilee with gifts for the new baby at our house.  Shower day finally arrived, and so did a bunch of uninvited guests?  About an hour before the shower, our backyard was suddenly hopping with wild turkeys; 20 to be exact!

The shower was great, and I think Em managed to leave with quite the set-up for the new babe.  Hadley & Piper were very 'helpful' with all of the gifts opened, and consequently Emilee was very patient and appreciative of all the extra help.  After her fair share and then some of the shower treats, Hadley also tried out a silly shower game with the ladies (you were supposed to draw a baby on a plate, while it was on your head - she is in the foreground).

Emilee & her two helpers

And now, I would be remiss not to mention the fabulous Packer Superbowl win last weekend!  We attended a lovely party with the same group of friends that helped me to throw Emilee's shower, and had a blast cheering the Pack on.  No, I did not wear a Packer shirt, but I did don a little green just to make my husband happy. Not to worry, I still bleed purple.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Familiar Scent

I was sick earlier this week, and awoke this morning feeling much more like myself (aka - coffee finally tasted good!).  The girls (and Kyle) have been gems over the past couple days, and I really wanted to do something extra special to let them know just how much I had appreciated their help and sweetness while I was under the weather. So, despite the lurching in my stomach and the near gag in my throat, I brought out the fingerpaints (my strong dislike for fingerpaint goes way back).  It took a below zero day in February for me to finally pull out those brightly colored paints, the giant sized paper, and Kyle's (equally giant) paintshirts.

But the look on their faces when I first started squirting that (SMELLY) paint onto paper plates was well worth it.  And to top it off, the look of awe as they haphazardly (Hadley) & tenatively (Piper) dipped that first finger into the ooey gooey wetness made it even better.  Our kitchen counters are now completely covered in drying masterpieces, the paintshirts are washing away in a load of laundry, and the scent (familiar but still pretty awful) of fingerpaint lingers in the air.  Just don't ask me to actually fingerpaint myself, or do paper-mache for that matter, ever. 

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Change of Plans

The girls have been looking forward to this weekend for months now, as my brother Mike & his family were supposed to come for a sleepover.  Unfortunately, they had too many sick ones to make the trip from MN.  Bummer!!!  Thankfully, we were able to put it back on the calendar a couple weeks from now, and will be prayerful that everyone will be happy and healthy by then.  In an effort to help the girls get over their disappointment of missing their cousins, we packed up and headed for a surprise winter visit to Como Zoo.  We've always gone on a hot sticky summer day, but were very pleasantly surprised at how much fun it was to go on a warm (only people from the Midwest would call 28 degrees warm!) February day.  The crowds were little to none, and the girls were able to get really close to the animals indoors. 

Hadley fell in love with this little orangutan, who was determined to make her laugh with his silly antics. 

Whereas Piper preferred to cuddle the pretend seal sculpture rather than be scared by the crazy orangutan (she cried when he reached out his arms to her through the glass!).

Watching the Tiger pace a trail in the snow down below.

Time to warm up in the uber-humid but beautiful conservatory.  By this time the girls were just itching to be out of their coats and stroller...

And consequently got a little bit silly!
While we truly missed Mikey & family, it turned out to be a really special 'family day' for us.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

On Being Two and a Half

The honeymoon is over.  The sweet little snuggle bug that was once known as Pipey, has been replaced (pratically overnight!) by a very independent and stubborn, but still very cute, two and half year old (2.5 next week)!  Here are a few snippets from life as we now know it...

Over lunch, speaking to Hadley while eating in her highchair:
Piper: "These apples are really yummy, Hadley.  What kind are they, Mama?"
Me: "Gala, Piper."
Piper: Instant whine in her voice, "Oh, I don't like Gala! I don't want these apples." Fake crying ensues.
Me:  Opening the fridge for her benefit, "Ooops, guess I was wrong, they are Fuji apples, Pipe." White lies are not below this mother. 
Piper:  "Oh, yummmmm, I like Fuji apples, Mama."  Happily crunching away.

Getting ready for bed:
Me: Trying to think one step ahead of this 2.5 year old I gave her a choice, "Do you want to wear the pink shirt or the monkey shirt under your jammies tonight?"
Piper:  Slowly digging through the drawer now, "No I want the one with the cupcake on it."
Me:  "Great choice."  Grrr, gritting my teeth. 

While trying to help Hadley complete her Valentines for school:
Me: Looking over at Piper, noticing that she is randomly putting the glitter glue cap dangerously close to her nose, "Piper, do you think that cap should go in your nose?" Asking a question always helps children think through it themselves, right?
Piper: "No." With reservation in her voice.
Me: Looking down for less than 30 seconds.
Piper:  "Its stuck, Mama!!!"  Tears are streaming down her face, and she has never looked so pathetically sad.
Me:  "Hmmm, guess that wasn't such a good idea, huh.  Its okay, we'll get it out." Assuming that it will just blow out without too much trouble...Ah, no. 
Piper:  Apparently blowing wedged it in even worse, as she is now crying SO hard she cannot breathe, and my inside laughter is quickly being replaced by panic.
Me:  "Its okay, Pippa, we'll get it out with my tweezers."  Now carrying the sobbing, snotty, plugged up independent two year old like a baby into my bathroom.  We did finally get it out, but not without a lot more tears.

After lunch, right before naptime:
Me:  Watching as Piper was testing the limits of her new stretchy dinosaur with gusto.  "Pipe, if you stretch your dinosaur too much, he might just break right apart."
Piper:  Less than 30 seconds later, "His tail breaked!"  Sobbing ensues.  First real tears, and then fake ones.  ALL the way up the stairs and into her bedroom for naps.  Then suddenly quiet... "Maybe he will grow a new tip, Mama. Let's put him in the sunshine and see if he will grow a new tip!"