Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Summer day with mom

Now that I'm working four days a week, I really treasure my weekday off with the kids. Sometimes we end up grocery shopping and getting other errands done, but usually we have some fun! Yesterday was a good example: 9:30 am - Walk to the farmer's market in our neighborhood. Purchase sweet corn, blueberries, sausage, and a blueberry muffin. 10:00 - Stop in "the square" to eat the muffin and run around. 10:30- arrive home. Pack our lunches, load the stroller into the car, and head out for the zoo! Noon - 2:00 - Fun at the zoo. We visited the Farm at the Zoo first: cows, ponies, piglets, chickens, newly-hatched chicks. Paige got to pet the goats. We ate our picnic lunch here. Next stop: the carousel. Paige rode a giraffe all by herself, and Adam and I waved to her each time she came around. We spent some time visiting the monkeys and gorillas before calling it a day. Both kids fell sound asleep in the car on the ride home. Paige slept till almost 5:00! I took Adam with me to Target (still had to fit in one errand), while Paige slept at home (Steve was working from home, so she wasn't left alone). 5:15 pm - All 4 of us went to the park to watch Steve's softball team play in their semi-final game. Our friends were there with kids the same age as Paige and Adam. Paige and her pal dug around in the dirt and managed to get handfuls of it into her hair. Adam and Sabrina tried crawling off the blanket and eating leaves. 7:30 pm - Kids and I arrived home and started the bath and bedtime routine. It was a full, fun day -- the kind you'd like to have a whole summer full of, if only work and mundane tasks didn't get in the way!

Earlier this month, we visited our Ohio relatives:

Blake, Cole, Payton, Adam, and Paige

Adam and Paige with Pop-pop and Grandma Karen

Paige and Adam in the golf cart with Grandma Sara and Grandpa D

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

BBQs, brithdays, and more

July has been a busy, fun month for us! We hosted my college friends for a BBQ on July 4th. Between the four of us, we now have six kids ages 4 mos to 4 yrs, with another on the way in August (not mine!!).

Adam had his 9-month check up. He's 29.5 inches long and weighs 18 lbs 10 oz. He talks a lot, rolls, sits, scoots, and puts everything in his mouth. He's eating a wide variety of baby and table food, and he loves feeding himself. We know when he's done because he starts throwing anything left on his tray! He likes pulling himself up to stand, but he's neither crawling nor walking yet, much to his own frustration! Soon, my son, soon... He has also started clapping and waving, and he thinks this is so funny when he is watching himself in the mirror!

I spent four days in NYC for work earlier this month. Between Steve and our great nanny, the kids were well-cared for. I missed them terribly, although sleeping alone in a hotel room does have its advantages. Namely, the sleeping part! Before I left, we took a family trip to the zoo. Paige still loves the carousel. She got to feed the cows while we were there as well.

For my birthday last weekend, Steve took me to the Cubs game in the afternoon. That evening, we hosted a BBQ here with tons of friends and their kids. The best surprise (which I still can't believe Steve pulled off) was getting my mom to drive up for the party! I was shocked when she walked in! I gave her a big hug & immediately started crying! What a special birthday gift! The BBQ went smoothly until some rain sprinkles began to fall, of course just as the food was coming off the grill. The rain lasted only a few minutes, then the sun came back out. We were treated to a rainbow! So many blessings on this birthday & so much to be thankful for!

A blog post wouldn't be complete without a funny anecdote, so here goes. Last weekend, Paige and I were playing in her kitchen. She pulled out a placemat that has a map of the US on one side and a map of the world on the other. She handed it to me, and we had this conversation:
me: Thanks for the map. Want to see where your grandparents live?
Paige: sure
me: Grandma Sara, Grandpa D, and Grandma Karen and Pop-pop live in Ohio. [I point]
Paige: I want to go to B-ohio! [She always puts a "b" in front of Ohio]
me: well we are going in a couple of weeks, and we will see Grandma Sara's new condo. It's a long drive from here. Do you remember where we live?
Paige: Chicago!
me: Yes! [I point] Do you remember where Grandma Joy and Jaja live?
Paige: Grandma Joy lives on the other side of the map [turns the map over] with Chow Chow [their cat].

Sunday, May 3, 2009

May update

Paige has gotten very creative with her imaginative play. Today, we came home from the park and I pulled out my keys to open the garage & stow the stroller. She took the keys (on a long lanyard-type thing to go around my neck) and put them on her neck. Then she asked "What's your name?" - which meant she wanted me to ask her this question. So I asked, "What's your name?" and she replied "Paige the police officer! And I have a whistle!" Then she put one of the keys in her mouth and pretended to blow on it! She helped me open the garage, then she had to go in the house and tell daddy that she was a police officer. This persona lasted about 30 minutes!

This time last week, we were cleaning up after Adam's baptismal party. He was dunked at Holy Trinity last Sunday morning and feted here with a lunch and about 30 guests. He's six months old already, laughing, smiling, flirting, "talking," and expressing his displeasure when Paige takes away the toy he was playing with. He's still only rolling in one direction, but his core is getting stronger & he can sit up for several seconds before toppling sideways.

Both kids had check-ups last week, and they are both growing steadily. Paige is about 36.5 inches tall and weighs 28 pounds. Adam is 28.5 inches long and weighs 17 lbs 4 oz. This means he's only 1/2 inch away from outgrowing the length limit on his carseat, so guess what we shopped for yesterday?! Actually, we decided to get a bigger seat for Paige, then switch Adam into Paige's old seat.

Steve and I marked four years of married life last Thursday. It's gone by so quickly, and we can hardly believe how different our lives are now versus four years ago! We went out to dinner on Friday night and really enjoyed our child-free evening together. It brought back lots of memories from our dating life and early married days. Someday, we'll travel again... but for now, trips to the park, the zoo, and grandma's house(s) fill our time.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

When I grow up, I want to be...

Paige had her first "when I grow up, I want to be..." moment yesterday! I'm sure she'll have many more career changes, but her first declared profession is: dentist!

We went to visit our friend Susanna and her new baby, Brock, yesterday. On the way home, we had this conversation:
Me: Next time, we'll visit when Val [dad] and Chaz [3 y.o. big brother] are there, so we can see the whole family.
Paige: And Chaz will be there and Val will be there.
Me: Right, today Chaz is at school and Val is at work.
Paige: And Val is working.
Me: Right, today he is working. Val is a dentist. He fixes people's teeth.
Paige: Paige wants to fix the people's teeth! When I will grow up, then I will fix the people's teeth!
Me: Do you want to be a dentist like Val?
Paige: Paige will be a dentist! Then Paige will grow up and Paige and Val will be dentistes!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Explaining the Resurrection to a Two Year Old

Paige: Remember we went to Hannah's special program at church?
Me: Yes. Do you remember it too? We had a good time. [We went to see Paige's babysitter Hannah dance in a program at the Loyola U chapel, just Paige & mom. Special mother-daughter bonding.]
Paige: Yes. The girls were dancing in the church. And pictures in the church.
Me: Yes, there were paintings of Jesus in the church. [Stations of the cross paintings around the top of the chapel, which we discussed in depth while we were there.]
Paige: Want mama to tell you about Jesus.
Me: Jesus was a man who helped people. He healed them and gave them food when they were hungry. In the pictures, Jesus had to go see the King. The King thought Jesus was bad, so he told Jesus that he had to die. Some soldiers nailed Jesus to a cross with nails in his hands and feet.
Paige: That hurt Jesus
Me: Yes, that hurt Jesus. But he was not afraid to die. After he died, then he came back to see his friends as a spirit. A spirit is like a ghost. [We have read stories w/ ghosts]
Paige: Then Jesus was a scary ghost.
Me: Well, he wasn't a scary ghost. His friends were glad to see him when he came back after he died. His friends were not scared.
Paige: Then that was the end of Jesus.
Me: Not really. Jesus still visits his friends to help them and remind them to help other people.
Paige [with emphasis]: But that was the end of Jesus, mama!

New Barrettes

A few days ago, Paige picked out some new barrettes with little shapes/animals on them. So far, she really likes the ones with birds, rabbits, and poodle dogs. When we brought them home the first day, she wanted two on each side of her head. I put them in, then set her up on the changing table to look at herself in the mirror hanging there. She smiled at herself, then had this conversation with herself, while trying to touch her own head in the mirror:

"Hi me! You have pretty hair me! Mommy, see Paige's new barrettes! It's hard to touch me hair. Me hair is in the mirror. Hi me!"

It was definitely one of those moments when you want to double over laughing, but she was so serious!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Hint of Spring

Yesterday the temp broke above 40* and we took full advantage! We hit the library first, where more books about Curious George and Thomas the Tank Engine found their way home with us. Paige handed the checker my library card, and the lady handed it back with a sticker that said "I used my library card today!" Paige proudly wore the sticker till about half-way through music class, when she transferred it to my shirt instead.

After music class, we came home for a nap and lunch, then off to the Lincoln Park Zoo! We were disappointed that the carousel was closed for the day, but the gorillas and chimpanzees provided lots of entertainment. We also really enjoyed watching the playful seals. From the underwater viewing area, Paige said "I wish I can hold this big seal!" She loved watching them swim right up to the glass, then whoosh away again. We hit the zoo at just the right time: it was not crowded at all, and we got a parking spot very close to the entrance, which made the trip much easier on mom. When we got home, dad (AKA gourmet Steve) had a delicious dinner of chicken parmesan and noodles waiting for us. YUM!

I noticed that I forgot to post Adam's stats after his last check-up. He weighed 15 lbs 3 oz and was 27 inches long. His weight is in the 50th percentile for his age, but his height is off the chart. He is the height of the average 7-month old boy! The Dr even measured twice because she thought the first measurement must be wrong. Overall, he is very healthy!

Adam still hasn't rolled over yet. Yesterday I really thought he would make it that last 25%, since he rolls from his back to his side, then tilts his upper body so his face is planted on the floor. He just needs to kick his legs over, and he'll be mastering this new skill. Any moment now! In the meantime, he has mastered the flirty smile, which he loves to flash when we're out shopping. He also "talks" a lot, most likely trying to keep up with Paige. He "eats" bananas or rice cereal about once/day, although not much of it stays down. He's still nursing on average seven times/day, and based on his growth rate, I'm sure he's getting enough!

The new nanny took both kids to the park this morning, with temps pushing 50* today. We are all so glad that spring is right around the corner!

Monday, February 16, 2009


Adam ate his first solid food today: bananas! He seemed to like them OK while eating them, but about 10 minutes later, most of it came back up. Oh well. We will try again tomorrow. Hard to believe he is four months old already. He has a check up on Wed. so I'll post his stats after our visit to the pediatrician.

As for Paige, well, she & the new nanny made all kinds of animals out of play-doh today. They made a whole family of turtles (daddy turtle, Paige turtle, and mommy turtle). Paige insisted that each turtle needed to have a belly button! Paige also wanted to "help" with the dishes tonight. Currently, this involves puring water from one cup into another and spilling most of it on the counter. I am hopeful that someday soon, it will mean actual HELP with the dishes, which never seem to stop piling up.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

New Year's Resolution

Write on the blog more often! Oops, well, let's call this a winter resolution...

Paige is two, going on 13. She is alternately testing her independence and clinging to me. She is also becoming quite a talkative girl! She recalls events (and meals!) from months ago. Today she told me how she ate corn on the cob with our neighbors & their little girl last Fall (we saw them out in the yard after not seeing them for over a month during the last cold spell). Last week, she recounted how she rode the green tractor at the zoo (this also happened last Fall, with grandma & Pop-pop). We visited the zoo again last weekend on an unseasonably warm day, and Paige directed us to all her favorite things: the monkeys, the lions, the carousel, the red barn, and the green tractor! She would be so happy to go to the zoo every day.

Paige is adjusting really well to our new nanny, Allie. Allie is very creative, always singing new songs and coming up with new craft ideas. Today they made a ladybug out of paper plates and a snowman out of pre-packaged sugar cookie dough. They baked the snowman for consumption at a later date. Overall, I think the kids are adjusting to me being back at work better than I am!

I'm taking both kids to a new music class called Music Together. This class focuses more on music education, teaching rhythms, pitch intervals, and exposing kids to a wider range of instruments & all types of music. Our class last fall was more entertainment-based (although also fun!). The highlight of the Music Together class for Paige is that her friend Theo is also in the class. She gets SO excited to go to music class with Theo!

Adam is smiling all the time. He has started to babble more, although he's no match for his chatterbox sister. He's getting stronger every day. He can roll to the side, but not quite all the way over yet... any day now... He had his first cold last week, so he hasn't been sleeping well (and neither have I). But he's on the mend, generally back to his usual easy-going self. He loves watching his sister and at times yearns to hop out of his bouncy seat and follow her! Soon enough, he will be mobile, and then we'll have a whole new set of challenges. But also new joys. Here are a few recent photos.

Paige and Adam, Feb 1, 2009

Family Photo, Dec 30, 2008