Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Ho Ho Ho! Today was Luke's 1st Christmas and Blake's 3rd (wow - time flies). Both boys were up around 7:30-8:00 (and unfortunately a few times too many during the night) and had fun opening their new toys and books. Actually Luke didn't have a clue as to what was going on and I'm not sure Blake really did either. Though I did hear him say "I like Santa" once today which was a nice change from the "Santa scary" he had been saying. We had to play down the idea of Santa coming into our home after everyone is asleep...that might have put him over the edge.

The boys got quite a few new toys and books from Santa this year. Blake got a scooter, a sled (a step up from the baby sled I insisted he get last year that he quickly outgrew), a firetruck, a digger, a Dr. kit, a Play-doh set, a recorder, and lots of movies and books. Luke got a few new baby toys and some new shoes. Oh and they both got a new ornament. I'm going to buy them each an ornament every year. And even little Molly got in on the action...a fresh new bag of Dingos!

We had such a fun Christmas this year. Hard to believe it was this time last year we were telling our family and friends that we were expecting again. It's amazing how much your life can change in the course of a year. Things are a lot busier these days...and louder, and disorganized, and crowded. But I wouldn't change a thing. I'll miss the hustle and bustle of just getting out the door in the morning some day. I'll miss the echo of a laugh, a song, a squeal, a scream or a tantrum some day. I'll miss the ever present pile of books, stuffed animals, cars, and other toys that always seems to find their way back out seconds after I have put them away. And I will certainly miss the fact that there is no where to escape in this house someday and will probably be begging these boys to just spend some time with their Mama. One thing is for sure, our house is overcrowded with love and that is something that will never change.

From our blog to yours...Merry Christmas Everyone! We wish you all a year filled with lots of love, laughter and good health!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Early Christmas Present...for me!

This one comes without a picture because it would be difficult to snap one of me sleeping for 7 HOURS STRAIGHT!!!! Hallelujah! I woke up this morning around 4:30 (yes, I go to bed at 9:30 on a late night) and felt like I just awoke from a coma. Then I did the sound check - that's where you listen really hard to make sure you hear some sign of life coming from your childrens' rooms - and then fell back asleep until 7:00. It's been amazing...I'm sort of giddy still thinking about it.

This was the best gift that my boys could ever give me and even sweeter because they coordinated and "crafted" it all by themselves. That is usually the problem. You see, they are both individually very capable of sleeping through the night without making a peep. However, they both like to switch it up so that on any given night one of them sees my lovely face a few times to replace a pacifier, replace a cover, etc. And this was 100 times better then those mornings when my really sweet husband says I can sleep in, yet I lay there in bed listening to everything that is going on in the house because it is impossible to turn off "mommy ears."

Ahhhh, Merry Christmas to me! Now, it's pretty much guaranteed that the very fact I'm documenting this will mean it won't happen again until next Christmas. Oh well, I still have the rest of the day to enjoy my full tank! :)

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Twinkle Bus

As much as I'd like to believe the happiest day of Blake's life was when his adorable baby brother was wasn't. Last night was most definitely the best day of his little 900 day life. Our very good friends, the Lamothe's, invited us and another family to ride the "Twinkle Bus" in the Minneapolis Holidazzle Parade last night.
For those of you who don't know, the Holidazzle is a nighttime parade that runs from Thanksgiving to Christmas in downtown Minneapolis. The floats are all made of lights and play music. Believe it or not the parade only cancels when the air temp (with wind chill) is 20 below. And believe it or not, people pack the streets to watch this parade every year. We've done it a few times ourselves too.

So, last night we braved the snowy roads and headed downtown for Blake's big event. He already has a slight infatuation with buses so you can imagine the look on his face when we walked into the city bus garage to board the Twinkle Bus! He was in awe the whole time! Once the parade started he did such a good job waving at the people on the streets. He would say hi and Merry Christmas to them too.

The kids had so much fun and we are so grateful to our friends to have invited us to ride along. We are already hoping we can do it again next year!!

Winter Days...

This will probably the first of many posts entitled "winter days" seeing how winter lasts about 9 months in Minnesota. We got a lot of snow this weekend so Blake got to play outside again. And Luke got to play in the snow for the first timet too. Well not really, but we were outside for about 5 minutes.

Blake can finally ride his trike too. I think the thicker sole on his snowboots finally gave him the extra heighth to reach the pedals. He was very excited about it as you can see.

This was a pretty good snow so we might try and make a snowman today...what am I saying, Daddy and Blake might try to make a snowman. Mommy and Luke enjoy the climate controlled indoor activities like the jumperoo!

Brotherly Love...

Blake was being so sweet to his brother one night and I had to snap some pictures. Blake truly loves this little guy and Luke just lights up whenever Blake is around.

Fa La La La La...

Blake, Abby, Chloe, Jonny

Blake has his first Christmas concert last weekend. Again, like the spring concert, he refused to sing or dance. This time instead of crying the entire time, he sat staring away from the crowd looking extremely ticked off. It was kind of funny. Sure enough as soon as we got home he started singing the songs and dancing. There were a lot of people there so I'm sure it was a bit intimidating to a 2 1/2 year old. He did perk up oafter the concert when he got a cupcake. Oh and to top it all off, his least favorite person in the world was there...Santa Claus.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Happy 5 Month Birthday Luke!

Another month has passed, wow! Your Daddy and I can hardly keep up with how fast you are changing. I was having a mommy moment last night and had to watch some of videos of when you were first born to remind myself how little you were and how amazing it is to see you grow (even though I would stop time if I could and enjoy some of this a little longer). I'm starting to do a better job of reminding myself that I will miss this time some day so I should enjoy every second - and yes, even those seconds that are spent wandering into your room at 3 am to swaddle you tighter and stick a pacifier into your mouth (only for you to spit it right back out)!

You have had a great week...your ear infection has cleared up and you don't seem to have a cold at the moment. (Guaranteed you will pick something new up tomorrow.) You weigh 17lbs, 7 oz now and are starting to get some rolls on your thighs. I'm sure it's partly because you are feeling better this week, but you have been such a happy little guy. Laughing and smiling a ton. And you have hardly cried in your car seat to/from school - THANK YOU! You've finally gotten strong enough to grab your feet and you LOVE to do it. It's just a matter of time before those toesies are in your mouth! You are starting to make some new sounds too. And of course, your brother still adores you. He is always so sweet to you and I can't wait until you are old enough to play together.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

It's Official...

Blake called Chloe his "girlfriend" this weekend. Since receiving their Christmas card in the mail he has carried it around the house, slept with it in his hands (all night long), and hung it on the refrigerator. One night I was laying in his bed getting ready to read to him and he ran out of the room to get something he forgot...the card. As he was climbing back into bed he said "girlfriend, Chloe." Then he sat there and stared at the card, grinning from ear to ear for a few minutes. It was adorable. We're off to a good start...I couldn't approve more of his first girlfriend!

"Most Babies"

Here is Luke trying out one of Blake's absolutely favorite contraptions. Seriously, Blake could play in this thing for an hour when he was a baby. He actually got quite jealous when we broke it out for Luke today so he figured out how to climb in on his own and jump.

Well you would think from the picture that Luke enjoyed the jump-a-roo...he did for about 5 minutes...just like every other baby contraption we own. This little guy is so tough to figure out! He is just so atypical from everything we know about babies! He just wants to constantly be carried around the house. I'm sure most people are thinking, what is the harm in that? Simply being held is not good enough, he prefers you to be walking and continually giving him a change of scenery. It certainly equates to a fair amount of exercise by the end of the weekend. Thank goodness he's so darn cute!

Blake has a book about puppies that goes through all of these different puppy life scenarios, like "most puppies like dig" or "most puppies like to sniff" and then it's always followed by one puppy that says "but not this one." Then at the end of the book it says "but all puppies like to sleep!" So, Kurt and I have started this thing where when we talk about Luke or try something new with him, we say "most babies like to swing" or "most babies like to nap" and then we follow it with "but not this one." We thought all babies LOVED the jump-a-roo and that we'd finally found the last chapter his "book", but apparently not all babies like to jump.

First Real Snow

Blake enjoyed the first real snow of this winter today. He played outside with Daddy for a while and even tried to make a snowman. He got his little red car out and proceeded to drive down the driveway. When asked where he was going he said, "Chloe's house."

Mommy had intended to get Luke outside too, at least long enough for the photo op, but it never happened. I'm sure we'll have plenty of other snowy days here in the Northern Tundra!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

"The Wheels on the Bus"

Oh what a fun day we had today! The one morning the boys decide they might actually sleep past 7:00 was the one morning we had plans at 9:00 and had to wake them up to get ready! We went to the St. Paul Children's Museum where we met Chloe and her parents. We took Blake a year ago, but this was Chloe and Luke's first time there. We had such a good time we all bought annual pays for itself with just 3 visits. And note to other parents of small children...Sunday mornings at 9:00 (right when they open) is PERFECT!

There were so many fun moments to capture. They both loved driving and riding on the bus that was in the little village section. They also enjoyed delivering mail, being in a music video at the recording studio, shopping (and working) at the grocery store, and cooking at the restaurant. The water activities were a hit, as was "Ball-o-rama", the nature area and the pretend factory. There was so much to do and we can't wait to go back. I think one of the funniest moments at the museum was when we were in the water area and the intercom came on to announce that Story Time was about to begin...Blake ducked down and started looking around at the ceiling with this look of absolute amazement. He had no idea where the voice was coming from! It was hysterical!

After the museum we went to lunch at Cosetta's - an authentic Italian restaurant/grocery. A funny thing happened while we were waiting for food...Chloe has this little lion she carries with her and today she also brought a little stuffed bear that Blake was playing with. So she was taking "Lion" and making it kiss Blake on the cheek, but every time she did it he would take the Bear and growl at her. It was so cute and went on at least a dozen times. I guess gender roles form very early!

After we got home I asked Blake what the best part about the day was. I was sure he would say the bus, but his response was "Chloe." And if that wasn't a melt your heart moment, I asked him what his second favorite part of the day was, again assuming the bus was going to be his answer, and he responded "Daddy." I told you he was a Daddy's boy! That won him brownie points for a few days I'm sure!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Counting Our Blessings

We have so much to be thankful for this year...our cup definitely "runneth over" with chubby cheeks, smiles and laughter!

We are so blessed to have welcomed another beautiful, bouncing, baby boy into our lives. I did not add "healthy" to that description, because he is yet again under the weather with a double ear infection. But that's okay, because he is so perfect in every other way. His little belly laugh and huge grin can make you smile at all hours of the day! We call him the "cat napper" because he takes all of these really short naps during the day, but at night he will sleep like a champ (most of the time). We have discovered that he has 2 moods, really happy or REALLY MAD! As much as they look alike, he and Blake are definitely 2 different little boys. It will be so much fun to continue to watch him change and see his personality come through.

Blake has had a great year too. He is changing everyday and getting so smart. He knows everything we say now which is dangerous! He "read" his first book to me last night. Which basically means I have now read this book so many times that his little 2 1/2 year old brain has finally memorized it and he can now recite it to me using just the pictures. He loves to sing, dance, wear our shoes and read. He is doing great in school and enjoys getting to see his buddies every day. Oh and he is 100% a Daddy's boy!

We are definitely thankful to have each other too. I can't imagine this life without the support that each of us provide to each other. We have a whole new respect for parents with two or more children!

And not to be forgotten we are thankful for our precious little Molly. She is always there to keep our feet warm at night! It's about the only contact she can get these days poor thing!

Flat Stanley...

came for a visit last week. My nephew Drew who lives in Indiana has been reading about Flat Stanley and thought it would be fun for Stanley to come to Minnesota for a visit. Here are some pics of Stanley during his stay.
PS - Drew, Stanley is on his way home and will be back in class next week!

What's better than turkey?

Oatmeal, if you are 4 months old! Luke had his first taste of some "real" food this week. On his first taste, he sort of liked it. Was a bit confused and didn't know what to do with his tongue. He only had a few spoonfuls before he was all done. It was funny to watch him practice using his tongue the rest of the day though.

Second taste, was a whole different story! I seemed to have forgotten that it's a good idea to introduce a new food to a baby when they are not STARVING! Boy, he was mad! So we got a few more spoonfuls in before we gave up for the day.

We'll keep trying though! It's hard to believe he has already ventured into the real food phase.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

"Miracle on Ridgedale Drive"

Well it wasn't quite the same as the movie, but there was definitely a twinkle in this Kris Kringle's eyes that makes you wonder...

This was the first time we have taken either boy to meet Santa and as you can see he and Luke bonded immediately. It was so cute. Blake on the other hand had an indescribable look of fear on his face and clung to Kurt like super glue. Maybe you have to start the Santa thing earlier than 2 1/2. He did however have fun riding all the cars at the mall.

And I have to note a funny conversation Kurt and I were having the other day about Santa, but if you have children that can read you might want to cover their eyes.

So, we were discussing whether or not you wrap the "Santa" presents and how many the boys should get. I said "no and only 1", he said "yes and why just 1?" I said you can't have more than one because how do you explain to your children how Santa and his elves can wrap, fit into the sleigh and deliver all of those gifts in one night? Kurt's response, "is it any easier to explain how he can wrap and deliver 1 billion presents in one night versus 2 or 3 billion?" Point taken. :)

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Luke's New Trick

Here it is! Don't blink...he's pretty fast!

Happy 4 Month Birthday Luke!

This was a big month for you in a lot of good and bad ways. You got your first report card and had your first parent/teacher conference at school (which you passed with flying colors)! You've had your first cold, double ear infection and stomach bug (and yes, thank you, Mommy has been as sick as a dog the last 3 days as a result). You are just a little jabber jaws and Mommy and Daddy get such a kick out of hearing you "talk." Your status as my champion sleeper has changed a bit as a result of your recent ailments, but I have no fear that someday you will reclaim the title.

And the biggest news rolled over for the first time on Sunday! Daddy got to see it first, which made me kind of sad, then I remembered that I saw Blake's first so now we're even. You look so cute when you do you know you've done something really impressive (which it is by the way). So you have now mastered the front to back roll and I think the back to front isn't far off since you are pretty strong. I'll post a video of it in the next blog.

You have your 4 month check-up tomorrow so I will have to add your most recent stats to this post once I get them. More shots tomorrow - sorry I know they hurt, but know that we are only trying to ensure you live a long and healthy life. The controversial "thing" now a days is about whether or not to vaccinate. The alternative is far too risky from a health perspective in our opinion. And besides, Mommy and Daddy had all of our shots growing up, and we turned out just fine (though you might not agree in 16 years or so)!
Here's a clip of you laughing and smiling...Happy Birthday little L!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

New Chair

Luke got a new chair today...the Bumbo! Just when you think you have everything you need for child rearing they introduce some new "gotta have it" item. They've been using one at school and they said Luke really likes it. So, call us suckered, but we shelled out the $50 for one at Target (we thought the one with the tray would come in handy once baby food starts). So here is little Luke in his new chair. Blake had to try it out which he accurately proclaimed "I'm too big!"

Goose Egg...

Here is a picture of Blake's first goose egg. It's a little hard to see, but he has a knot and a bruise right square between the eyes. Poor little guy. Sadly to him, the story book Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed is now a biography.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Fall Cleanup

Blake got in on the leaf clean-up action this afternoon. As you can see he was very helpful by sweeping the leaves out of the garage. He took it very seriously. And yes, those are my shoes...