Just Keep Swimming

To sum up how we have been since my last post in two words: extremely busy.

Between finishing my Master’s degree, working, juggling everyone’s schedules and the holiday season it feels like I am finally just starting to be able to come up for air. Here’s hoping that our 2014 will be a little more stress free and full of amazing adventures.

Things that we have been able to squeeze in during our free time:

  • Attend three super cute kids birthday parties
  • Took the cutest trash can and ladybug you’ve ever seen trick-or-treating
  • Ran another 5k that benefited the Woodland Park Zoo
  • Had a nice visit from my Mom and step-dad Gary for a long weekend
  • Took Jimi and Cecilia to their first movie in the theater
  • Celebrated James turning 30 years old with a jam session and an old fashioned house party
  • Take Jimi and Cecilia for a trip on the Santa Train on the Snoqualmie Railroad
  • Had a nice surprise visit and dinner with James Aunt Ali and her boyfriend Dan
  • Celebrated and early Thanksgiving with my family
  • Had a date night via Jimi’s preschool’s parent’s night out
  • Stated taking Jimi to speech therapy once a week (hopefully I’ll get to another post on that soon)
  • Had a fun and delicious Thanksgiving with James’ Dad, step-mom Karen,  his Jennifer, and Grandma Dorothy
  • Traumatized Cecilia and made Jimi’s dreams come true simultaneously when they both met Santa
  • Enjoyed a lovely Christmas Eve with James’ Mom, step-dad Jamie, and Jennifer
  • Spent Christmas with my Dad, his girlfriend Ann and my sister’s family

know there is more but my brain is fried. If I forgot anything super awesome that we did with you, please forgive me.

And just because I love looking at pictures of my cute family over and over here is a little slide show of the last few months. Enjoy!

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Easter Craft with Jimi

Jimi is finally at the age where he can handle doing some small crafts (with some guidance). For Valentine’s Day, I had him do the easy craft of coloring on coffee filters and flicking water on it to make cool color blends. We turned those into cards to mail to family. I saw this cute  Easter craft on pinterest using shaving cream and paint and thought it would be a good one for Jimi to try (original post can be found here).

I found a set of glittery acrylic paints on clearance at Target, bought some cheap shaving cream, did a google search of egg templates until I found one I liked, traced it onto some card stock I already had and cut them out.

What you need:

  1. Shaving cream
  2. Paper plates
  3. Acrylic paint
  4. toothpicks
  5. card stock or construction paper
  6. wax paper or parchment paper
  7. Scraping device (like a rubber spatula)

What to do:

  1. Spray some shaving on the paper plates. Spread it around with the rubber spatula
  2. Squirt different colors of acrylic paint onto the shaving cream
  3. Use a tooth pick to blend the paint colors (you only need to mix them a small amount. If you over mix the there won’t be a swirly/tie-dye effect)
  4. Take the card stock (cut into whatever shape you want) and press into the shaving cream
  5. Place the card stock on wax paper to let the shaving cream mix set on the paper
  6. After a couple of minutes, use the rubber spatula to scrape the shaving cream off of the paper

After the shaving cream is scraped off the paper you will be left with a super cool “painted” egg

Here’s how our project went:

016Our supplies

015A grumpy boy because I made him wear one of my shirts over his clothes.

018Ready to add the paint.

021022 024Pressing the egg shapes into the shaving cream/paint mixture.

025Letting the shaving cream/paint mixture set on the card stock.

032I used a rubber spatula to scrap off the shaving cream.

004Our His final project. Glued on to card stock to make them into Easter cards.

Virginia Trip 2012

This year we decided to go to Virginia for Christmas to visit with both mine and James’ families that live out there. We spent one week with my family in Portsmouth, VA and one week with James’ family in Northern VA about an hour outside of DC. Our trip didn’t go exactly as we had planned but we still had a lot of fun.

Jimi was so excited to fly on a plane that he did not sleep much the night before and stayed awake from 2:50am (when we left for the airport) until about 9:30am and only slept for 30 minutes. Even though he stayed awake most of the day he did a pretty amazing job traveling. Unfortunately at some point during our travels Jimi picked up a stomach bug and started vomiting everything he consumed for 3 days. A day later I caught the bug, only worse. I could hardly move for a day. Next my nieces caught it and then James and my nephew…. It quickly made its way through the family. James felt well enough to travel the day after Christmas so we made our way North to stay with his family. That proved to be a mistake because we then spread the horrible bug to nearly all of his family up there, including everyone who had traveled from Georgia to see us. We’re so sorry everyone but we are really glad we got to see you!

In between horrible bouts of sickness we did manage to go to the Portsmouth Children’s Museum, the Norfolk Zoo, have a lovely Christmas with family, play board games, introduce Cecilia to many family members, spend a lot of time in with family we rarely get to see, watch Jimi play, play and play some more with many cousins, attempt to go snow tubing, have lunch with our friends Dana and Lauren who live in Virginia and go wine tasting.

Thank you very much to all of our family who traveled to see us! And a HUGE thank you to my mom and step-dad and the Virginia Orr family for letting us invade your homes and stay with you!!

Here are some pictures from our trip:

Dear Cecilia: 4 Months Old

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Dear Cecilia,

You are a very busy 4 month old. You started rolling over from back to tummy at 15 weeks and haven’t stopped moving. It doesn’t take you long to flip over from your back and then scoot around in circles in search of toys. You’re starting to move forward so I have little doubt that you’ll be crawling soon.  I can already tell we’re going to have our hands full once you figure it out. When your hands aren’t in your mouth, your feet are.

You continue to have a growing relationship with your brother. I think you must have a secret language with him because he runs up to you to whisper that he loves you too as though you said it first. You like to grab any and everything to try to eat and explore including food out of Mommy and Daddy’s hands and your brother’s face.

You give the best smiles and are such a happy baby. You always wake up with a smile on your face. I’m going to talk to your doctor about starting you on “solid” foods soon because you seem so interested in them. In a few weeks we are going to see our East coast family for the holidays and I can’t wait to show you off to all of them.

Love, Mommy

Happy Easter!

We had a great Easter weekend. The weather was beautiful all weekend and we were busy with family the whole time.

On Saturday we went to the Woodland Park Zoo with my Dad so Jimi could do an Easter Egg hunt and check out the animals. We got stuck in traffic and it took 30 minutes to find parking and then when we got to the gates to buy tickets the line was back out to the parking lot. The line for memberships was much smaller so I told James we decided to get a membership since it is likely that we will be going back to the zoo a few more times in the next year. We got in to the zoo just before the egg hunt ended but it’s not like they actually hid the eggs for the toddlers so Jimi had more than enough time.

I’m not sure that we even told Jimi what to do once we got in the egg hunt area. He just started gathering up eggs and putting them in the bag we brought for them. Most of the eggs were in large clusters together but our little man actually made a hunt out of it. He went around picking up the random stray eggs before hitting the piles like the rest of the kiddos. After the egg hunt we made out way through most of the zoo. Jimi did great! He didn’t throw any fits and was really into the animals, even more so than a month ago when we went to the zoo. After the zoo we got dinner with my Dad at The Rock. Jimi decided he liked sausage and ate almost every last piece off the entire pizza. I took a ton of pictures during the day but here are a few of my favorites.

Haha. Jimi was sad it was time to leave.

Today (Easter), Jimi tore into the Easter basket right away. Figured out that the little gold bunnies were chocolate. We let him have one… I didn’t hide any eggs around the house, mostly because I didn’t have time to dye them ahead of time and partly because I wasn’t sure Jimi was ready for a real Easter egg hunt. Instead Jimi and I dyed eggs using this salad spinner like kit I got from Target. I got this kit because I didn’t want Jimi making a huge mess all over the counters and he already loves salad spinner so I figured he would get the hang of it. The kit worked really well in the mess free department but it did not come with enough dye for a lot of eggs. I only did 7 eggs and we used all of the dye. Also, it is pretty hard to cover all of the eggs in the dye. Most of the eggs didn’t turn out that great but I think Jimi still had fun. In the afternoon we went to James’ grandparents’ house for a nice brunch. Jimi was able to get outside and explore a little because it was such a nice day. We got home we let Jimi try out his new bubbles kit and did a little bbq’ing. All in all it was a lovely weekend.

Wearing shorts for the first time this year!

Who says I'm to big for the bumbo?

We hope you had a great weekend too!

(A late) Weekend Recap

So far 2012 has been anything but spectacular for this family. Hopefully, that will be changing soon.

Friday: We spent the better part of the afternoon and early evening shopping (one of James’ favorite activities). Our mattress is quite old, uncomfortable and makes a loud noise whenever one of us moves in the bed, which is constantly waking me up. We had planned on getting a new mattress after the new year but I heard of a good sale at Macy’s that we didn’t want to miss, so we headed to the mall for a few hours to try out mattress. Unfortunately, they cannot deliver our new mattress until Jan. 13th, so I’m anxiously counting down the days until then.

After Macy’s we headed to Babies R’ Us to buy some much needed diapers for Jimi and took advantage of their clearance sales to stock up on the next size clothes. Later that night James had a gig with 20 Riverside. I decided to skip this gig and stayed home with Jimi.

Saturday: We spent the day lounging around the house until the early evening when we headed to my sister’s house to play games and celebrate the new year. Before we left, Jimi got his hands on a catalog and decided to make some confetti:

At least he tried to help clean up the mess...

We tried to stick Jimi and John in cheesy New Year hats so we could take cute pictures. This is how it turned out:

Our plan was to stay the night at Stephanie and Ian’s since Jimi would be asleep already and so we wouldn’t have to deal with the crazy drunks on the road. … Jimi never fell fully asleep and by the time we went to bed at 1am, he was waking up every 5 minutes screaming. If it wasn’t one thing waking him up, it was another… I finally got very frustrated around 2:30am and decided to just drive home so that Jimi could sleep in his own bed. He slept a little better once we got home, but not great. The first bad start to the new year.

Sunday/Monday: We spent the entire day doing nothing, watching football, and recovering from our rough night the night before. Around 5pm, I started to not feel so good. I skipped dinner and just laid on the couch. By 7pm, I was throwing up horribly. I left James to take care of Jimi and went to bed. I spent the rest of the entire night sick in the bathroom about every 30 minutes. Around 6am (Monday morning), the sickness (as I am now calling it) hit James. My mother-in-law had the day off work so she was kind enough to watch Jimi for us for a few hours so we could get some rest. Later on Monday the sickness got to Jimi. (Be prepared for TMI) We’re talking diarrhea dripping out his pants sick. After we hosed him off (well, gave him a bath) he seemed to be in pretty good spirits other than not wanting to eat. Stephanie and Ian were kind enough to drive up some Gatorade for James and milk and Pedialyte for Jimi. Apparently, Ian got the sickness too so now we’re on the hunt to figure who gave it to all of us.

Thankfully after going to bed early last night we’re all starting to feel much better, although the boys still seemed a little wiped out.

I hope everyone else’s new year started off much better than ours!

Christmas 2011

This year was Jimi’s second Christmas, although it felt like his first since all he did last year (at just shy of 3 months old) was sleep. Which gave us plenty of opportunities to do things like this to him:

This year Jimi wouldn’t stand still for such shenanigans.

We spent Christmas Eve travelling between three different houses. We went to James’ grandparents, my good friend Molly’s house, and finally dinner at my Dad’s house (who throughly spoiled Jimi and John, I don’t even know where to put all of the gifts).

On Christmas, Jimi had us up bright and early at 7am. Which was way to early since he went to bed two hours late and was up half of the night. After presents and my family’s traditional Christmas morning breakfast casserole, we hit the road… just as the wind caused a power outage at our house. We had brunch at James’ Step Aunt and Uncle’s house, open gifts at his Dad’s house, and spent the evening at James’ Mom’s house. Needless to say we were all pretty tuckered out by the end of Christmas.

Jimi was a champ though and needed little coaxing to open the presents, although I’m pretty sure he was more interested in the wrapping and bags they came in than the toys themselves. Thank you to all of our families and friends for generously spoiling our little monkey (and us)!

John helping Jimi open presents on Christmas Eve.

So sleepy after opening all of those presents at Grampy's house.

Opening his stocking.

Multi-tasking, opening presents, while chewing on his new cup.

He ran around with that cup all morning.

Helping Penny play with her Christmas toy.