Saturday, November 28, 2009

Oh, the yellow rose of Texas!

We are having a fabulous time in Texas with Brandon's family. We had the trip from Hell driving down (and it had nothing to do with Eli). It involved 7 traffic jams the worst being 45 min completely stopped and 1 1/2 hours going less than 10 mph. I almost went insane, but Eli was an angel. What a relief! Just picture pregnant me about to pee my pants and throw up from motion sickness from the starting and stopping of the traffic jams. It was not a pretty picture. Luckily, the suffering was well worth it! Eli is loving being with all the family. Every morning when he's woken up he's wanted to see "Mimi" (Brandon's grandma) and "Emma" (the dog). So cute! It has been such a blessing watching him and my nephew Gavin (4 years old) play together. They have had a BLAST playing together for the past few days. They are sharing really well and taking turns well. What little characters. We got family pictures done yesterday and a special fancy portrait taken of Eli today (Brandon's mom had one of Gavin done that is beautiful). Eli did really well considering he hates sitting still. We got some great family pictures and a really precious picture of Eli. We'll see the proofs of the portrait Tuesday morning before we head home. I can't wait! I was really wanting to get one last family picture before we are a family of four! Very bittersweet. We've done a lot of fun things with the boys. We took them to the park (of course the weather is incredible here), the mall play place, and today to Wiggletown indoor play area (with blow up slides etc.). They've had so much fun it makes me sad we don't live closer because it's obvious they could be best buds. It does make me even more excited for child #2 because I can see how much fun they'll have when this baby is a little older. Gavin keeps copying every sound and word Eli says. Eli thinks it's hilarious. He also is bossing Eli around and trying to get him to play all these different games. So adorable. Gavin has said so many funny things to Eli it's just been cracking me up. Tonight Gavin said, "Eli's pooping! Come on Eli....1...2..3..,PUSH!" That's just the tip of the iceberg. I took so many photos and videos my camera is full already. A highlight so far was Brandon's brother Paul bringing over his giant pot bellied pig Dudley. I just can't get enough of that pig. He's just hilarious. Looking forward to posting hundreds of pictures when we get back of all the fun we've had!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Let the little sunshine in!

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This is a song we've HATED our whole lives because my mom would sing it EVERY morning when she woke us up in that cheery voice over hers. I think my sister has actually thrown things in a groggy state at the sound of this tune. Eli of course loves it. He likes to sing the annoying part at the end. What did I start?

I wanted to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving! Finally it is about time to head to Texas. Banana bread is made, bags are packed, and my attempt to keep Eli entertained for 6 hours toy/snack bag is ready :-). Eli can't really make it 2 hours in the car without stopping and running around, which actually works out nicely for me since I'm pregnant. I'm supposed to stretch my legs no longer than ever 2 hours, so hopefully we'll make it happen! It could be rough people. I'm afraid traffic might also be terrible, but we'll make the best of it. No use in worrying about nothing! I'm looking forward to Texas weather! It looks like we are going to have some nice days to play outside while we are there (yes, the chalk is packed). It also appears we may come home to snow! Ug! Actually, double UG UG!

I put up some of the Christmas decorations so when we come home in December it will be partially done and not as overwhelming. Eli LOVES the little Christmas tree I put in the basement as decoration. Brandon taught him to turn the tree lights on and then turn the lights off in the room so it's dark and beautiful. Then, we've been singing Christmas carols by the little tree. So cute! He's going to be SO excited when we buy our real tree. I can't wait! I'm looking forward to making some Christmas crafts, decorations, ornaments etc. So many art opportunities for this holiday! We've been talking a lot about Jesus, and he loves to read his books about Christmas.

Eli loves to play upstairs in the guest bedroom and his "big boy room" as we call it. I have all the baby stuff organized up in his future room, so he likes looking at everything. He now will point to the car seat, bath tub, and swing and say "BREE!". He also has been practicing gently rocking the car seat so he can be my big helper (his life goal). He helps me out all the time anything from carrying toilet paper to put under the sinks, putting things in the trash, attempting to sweep and mop, cleaning up spills, and his favorite helping me stir things I'm cooking or making. He especially likes to help me do the hand mixer. He helped me pour and mix all the ingredients today for the banana bread. So precious. He always gets a lot of praise for helping and a "fist pound" or "knuckles" as we refer to it. What a joy! I have so much to be thankful for. I look around and everything I've ever wanted has come true. It's incredible. Sometimes I feel I'm just waiting for something bad to happen because it's all so good!

Will be reporting back with hopefully wonderful tales of a great Thanksgiving with family!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Maroon 5




Last night Brandon and I went on our much anticipated date to the Maroon 5 concert! We needed a night out that didn't involve US performing. My brother babysat (he's always a life saver). I always ask Eli the next morning what they did and he always says "Ball ball!" He loves to play basketball with Will. We had a wonderful time at the concert. The openers Fitz and the Tantrums were very good and we had amazing seats. Maroon 5 blew our minds! They are one of Brandon and I's favorite bands, so it was a dream to see them live. Everything about the concert was fabulous. We danced and sang along all night! You can't sit still to the grooves of Adam Levine! The concert was our Christmas present to each other, so Merry Christmas! I am pretty much packed and ready to head to Plano, TX on Wednesday. I'm really disappointed we won't be able to leave until lunch time, but hoping that Eli will take his nap in the car. If he doesn't it may be the trip from Hell! :-) Praying for safe travels and a blast with family! We haven't been to Texas in a long time!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Wild baby!

Lately I've been feeling the baby move/kick a lot! It's a wonderful feeling to experience again! With Eli I didn't recognize the feeling until after my mid way sonogram. With this baby I was feeling flutters right into my second trimester. It's pretty awesome! I was just trying to lay down for a rest during Eli's nap and couldn't fall asleep because the little babe was moving like crazy! Wild one! I actually had an interesting morning because I threw up. I have no idea why (probably a food thing?). I feel fine but am taking it easy. Eli was super easy this morning playing like crazy on his own, so I was able to lay on the couch and play instead of chasing, which was great. He's still on a language kick this week. He was saying some letters yesterday, "B", "Z", "G", and "D". This is so much fun!!!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Mother's Day surprise!

We had a whirlwind weekend with my sister and mom here. We took advantage of the time we had and had a girl's lunch at the Tea Room (our favorite girly place). We love their sandwiches, tea, and the best bread pudding around! We also snuck out and did some shopping during Eli's nap. Eli adored having them here. He demanded their attention every second! I'm sure they slept for days after they left :-) ha ha. My mom babysat Saturday night while we all went to see a movie. We saw 2012, which was entertaining and suspenseful. It did feel good to get out! Sunday night we went to our big Thanksgiving dinner feast at our church. Eli's favorite part was the praise and worship. I purposely sat in the front row so he could enjoy all the instruments. He had a BLAST! It was such a blessing to watch him dancing, clapping, yelling "MORE!" and "GUITAR!", running, and jumping to the music. He was so excited to praise Jesus! We tried keeping him in church with us for worship this past Sunday and he loved it. I think we might start trying that and taking him to the nursery after worship or if he gets restless during worship. Eli is really trying to talk more and more. He is doing much better at trying words with some prompting. This weekend he said "Belt", "Net", "Will", "Pop", etc. Really such a language burst recently! Brandon took him to the mall yesterday for an outing and let Eli pick me out a 2010 calendar. Guess what he got me....wolves. He was SO proud of it and SO excited to show me what he had gotten me. What I always wanted...ha ha :-) It was so precious. Looking ahead at the calendar I realized that my due date (May 9th) is Mother's Day. How did this slip past me until now??? Of course, I will be having a c-section at least a week before that so it won't end up being the baby's birthday, but it's still neat!

We are having a really cold, rainy, snowy week so far! I've been thinking of all sorts of creative ideas to keep Eli entertained today. We even ventured out to the grocery store so I could get supplies for meals this week before it gets too nasty. I've got chili and corn bread cooking for tonight! Perfect meal on this grungy day! This is the first week in a long time we have NOTHING, I mean NOTHING on the calendar. It will give me plenty of time to work on some projects here and there and pack for our Texas Thanksgiving trip!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

talking talking talking!

Eli is in a language development spurt. Brandon and I were just mentioning that he's only added a few new words to his vocab in the past couple months and were hoping he'd have some growth in that area soon. Well we got our answer! This week he has broken out a lot of new words and is trying to say things he's never said before. This week alone he's started saying "I LOVE ya", "Dave", "Boo boo", "Cheetah", "Cheese", and more that I can't remember at the moment. He's also babbling sentences in his own made up words, especially when he's playing on his own. It's really fun to listen to him talking to himself while he jumps in leaves or scribbles in chalk on the sidewalk. One word he's been saying in his sentences is "abrilla" in a sort of Italian/Spanish way. Who knows what it means to him, but it's so cute.

Eli had his first official huge toddler melt down yesterday. It was so amazing I called Brandon so he could hear it in the background. It was all over the fact he wanted to go do chalk while I was making lunch, but I told him he had to wait until after we ate. Oh, was he mad. He was screaming chalk over and over again and cried and cried. I think I might have gotten a quick glimpse of the terrible twos. When switching activities Eli has been doing really well on not getting mad (like leaving the park, coming inside, etc.) as long as we give him a 5, 3, and 1 minute warning. Then, I praise him like crazy for listening and not getting upset. He's definitely doing better than I would expect (still has his moments though).

I am getting into the Christmas spirit around here. No, I haven't broken out the decorations or music (although I want to), I do have Eli's Christmas shopping DONE! Done, I tell ya! We just got him a few things (since he's not going to care at this age anyway and will be smothered with presents from relatives). It's nice to have it done though. Especially since I'll have the baby to shop for after December 8 when we find out boy or girl. I really would like to have presents under the tree when we get one after coming home from Plano, so now I'm ready! By the way...I'm feeling little baby kicks! Here's a video of Eli doing "cart wheels". He tries so hard!
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Monday, November 9, 2009

I LOVE ya!

I'm stealing a quick second while Brandon takes Eli to the playground. I needed the break! We celebrated the end of Brandon's furlough with a trip to the zoo. We have a great zoo here in Wichita. I really enjoy having an excuse to go :-) Eli, like all children, loves animals so he was excited to see everything. We told him ahead of time that he would get to see some wolves (his favorite animal since our trip to Great Wolf Lodge). From the second we got there he kept howling. Finally, we're like sheesh let's just take him to the wolves already! He stood and watched those wolves forever. I think he would have stayed all day! It's the one section in the zoo I normally always skip. I don't feel the need to see the North American animals when I can see them out my back door, but I can see it's going to be the most frequented now. He also loved the otters. It was a nice outing after a fun morning at church (where Eli is adored in Sunday school and doing wonderfully).
This afternoon Brandon met Eli and I at my doctor's appointment. Eli was impressing all of the receptionists/nurses with his mad ball skills. Such a show off! Everything is going great with this baby so far. We got to hear the little heart beat, which was fun. Eli kept saying "Bree!" (which is his name for the baby). Less than a month and I get to have my big sonogram! Please baby don't have your legs crossed! We were so excited this past weekend when Eli started trying to say "I LOVE ya!" It's so precious. He said it on the phone to my parents and they were thrilled! No one would know what he's saying but us, but it's so cute!
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Friday, November 6, 2009

Furlough!

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We've been taking full advantage of Brandon's furlough! We've crammed as much fun and work into this week as possible. Yesterday, we got bagels at Panera, hit up a friend's garage sale and bought some puzzles and a car track, went to Target, got vaccinations, got a milk shake to celebrate the bravery, hit up the park etc. Today, we've spent a lot of time outside in the beauty and went swimming at Cessna. Eli had a blast, and I was able to get some exercise in the pool. We are working on "baby" projects whenever we have the chance. We rearranged our room today to make room for baby #2 to be in our room with us for awhile until we think Eli is ready to move upstairs. It looks great and we measured everything to double check that the crib, rocker, etc. will fit. So glad we have such a big house now! We need it! Brandon installed a heat pump upstairs. It's a window unit that has both a heater and an air conditioner. It should solve our problems with not getting enough air flow upstairs. You can just set a temperature you want it to stay at and it takes over! I'm praying it's our solution! I also took advantage of some alone time to sort through newborn toys and get to cleaning and storing. It feels good to cross things off our list. Eli's new word of the week is "cheetah". Brandon was just reading him a book and he said it. Now he thinks it's hilarious to say it when we ask him to. It's funny because it's never been an animal that he even cares about. What a kid! The two's are coming my friends. Eli definitely reacts more to things than before. We're lucky in that he obeys very well and will always do what we say, but might not be too happy about it.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Farm living!









Eli was overjoyed at being at the farm with his grandparents. He played non-stop with them and had fun! We took him to our park in Minneapolis to play both days. He had a great time on all the old and new equipment. It was fun to see my child playing on equipment that we spent hours playing on as kids. We took Eli to the State Lake for a bonfire. He spent hours throwing rocks in the lake. We roasted hot dogs and Eli saw his first water snake. It was a great evening. We enjoyed a beautiful sunset on the lake. My mom created all sorts of fun games, art projects, etc. for him while we were there. He enjoyed throwing rocks in my parent's pond, swinging on my dad's swing set he built for us as kids, holding a cat, and playing hide and seek with Nana and "Bum".

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Happy Halloween!










Eli had the day of his life yesterday! We made jack-o-lantern pancakes that I let him decorate with mini chocolate chips, went on a lunch date to Panera, painted pumpkins, jumped and dove into a leaf pile, shopped for our Operation Christmas Child shoe box toys, hit up our neighborhood church's Fall Fest, ate chili, Eli played some games and got candy, went trick or treating on our block, and handed out candy. What a day! Eli was so excited about everything we did. It really was a special day. Brandon dressed up as Wolverine (from X-men), and I dressed as Juno (pregnant teen from the movie Juno). It as a lot of fun! I had to add a picture of my mom and her teacher friends as Oompa Loompas! In all the excitement, I totally forgot about "Fall back" so I'm up at 5 :-( Hopefully we can get Eli adjusted. We're headed to the farm this morning as soon as we've had breakfast. I'm ready for a "get away".