Monday, April 28, 2008

It's been awhile...

Since I shared some pics. So here are some pictures that we've taken recently of the girls. Well, the first isn't of the girls, but the sunset from our front yard a few nights ago.

Alayna had her spring concert at school last week. I took these 2 pictures of Mikayla and Lilly while we waited for it to start. I tried 2 different ways to make them b&w and don't know which style I like better. Regardless, I like how they both look with the background blackened out and only the girls in focus.

And Miss Alayna on stage. The first graders were standing on the floor with the K class behind them on risers. Alayna is the tallest kid in her grade, so she was in the back row. I teased her that her sweater was pulling up the front of her dress and if she'd been closer to the front, I probably could have seen her panties. LOL

*I posted earlier about our weekend

MN Horse Expo

Every year on the last Saturday of April, we make the trek into the Twin Cities and hit the MN Horse Expo. It's a day filled with everything horses-tack, veterinary supplies, clothing, grooming equipment, feed, waterers, barn building reps, fancing materials, HORSES...anything related to the horse industry is available to look at.

This year we decided to take all 3 girls, which is a feat in itself because it's incredibly busy there. So we all wake up on this past Saturday, April 26 (!!) and what do we see? About 2" of snow on the ground. Grrrr. But we bucked up, layered on clothing, and went anyway. It was cold and windy, but most of the day is spent indoors looking at the horses or the booths. We met up with our friend Kate and her kids, as well as my MIL, SIL and her boyfriend. We saw horses of all shapes, sizes, breeds and colors. Mikayla had a lot of fun in the backpack, as she was then the right height to pet a lot of the horses. She had such wonder in her eyes as she'd pet a horse's nose or face. We had a lot of fun, but due to keeping track of all 3 kids, I only took one picture. But it was a picture well worth it...

This horse (who was a gelding, such a shame!) was beautiful and ginormous. He is a Shire, one of the draft breeds, and he's white (obviously) which is somewhat rare for a Shire. For those of you who aren't familiar with horses, the "average" horse is 14-16 hands high, or 56-64", at the front shoulder. This beast was 18.5 hands (74" or 6'2") tall. That's the height of Andy and that's only at his shoulder, not with his head held high. Needless to say, he's a giant and a beautiful one at that. And this pic doesn't do him justice. You need to see him in person to see how huge he is, from his head, down to the sheer size of his hooves. Wow.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008


Last night was the first real thunderstorm of the season. The storms had been forecasted for a few days but they were a little slow traveling and didn't come until bedtime. That was fine by me. The temps were warm, too, in the 60s, so I got to do one of my favorite things of all time...sleep with the window open while it rained and rumbled outside.

It was so great. The rain smelled fabulous, the low rumble (and occasional good crack) of the thunder was calming and the random bolts of lightning stayed within the clouds and did only some mood lighting. I was seriously asleep in a matter of minutes. I was still tired from the weekend and that, combined with the rain sounds, lulled me into an immediate sleep. A HUGE crack of thunder right over the house woke us all up (except Lilly and Mikayla) at 11:45 and I could have sworn it was 4 am. I was sleeping so soundly and heavily.

Now, I can't wait until the clouds clear away this afternoon and the sun comes out. Because after some good rain and lightning, just a little sun will go a long way to make my brown lawn green! I can't wait!

Backyardigans LIVE!

This past weekend Andy and I took Alayna and Lilly to see Backyardigans LIVE! The Backyardigans is Lilly's favorite cartoon. It's on Noggin and Nick JR and follows 5 friends who are neighbors and go on magical, imaginary adventures. The live show had people in costume and they danced, sang and went on an adventure to protect a dragon egg for the king. The girls had a lot of fun and Andy and I had fun just watching them and the other children. Alayna was a little more low-key than Lilly (she's is a little older, after all, and can control herself better, LOL) but she still had a great time. Of course, since the show was a copyrighted event, we couldn't have our cameras in the auditorium. But, I did get a few pictures from my camera phone. Sorry about the quality...

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Happy Birthday, Nanner!

Today is my sister Amanda's birthday. Some of you know her as Amanda, some may know her as Devil, Nanner, Nan, Auntie Manda...she's got lots of names. She also has lots of roles: daughter, sister, sister-in-law, aunt, friend, niece, granddaughter. She does each role quite well, really. We're sisters, so I won't say we don't have our differences or arguments, but I will say that she's my best friend besides my sister. We love you Nanner!

I was going to post a picture of her, but I don't have any on the computer! Hmmmm, we'll have to fix that tonight at dinner and get a pic of her and the girls.

*I've posted a few times this morning, so check below.

Belly laughs

Mikayla has been such a funny little girl lately. Her favorite thing to do --or have done to her-- is to get tons of kisses right along her jaw-line and chubby cheeks. She will laugh and laugh, then sign her version of "more" when I'm done. And if I still pretend to ignore her, she'll shake her head like I do when kissing her. I have been meaning to catch it on video for awhile and finally yesterday set it up to take the video myself. Please excuse my make-up, hair partially combed, the double-chin from looking down. I seldom like pictures of myself and when I see me in videos, it's that much worse. You all know how that goes, right? Anyway, Mikayla is the point of the video. So just marginally see me and what I'm doing, focus on Mikayla. Okay?

Oh, and I updated my post from yesterday, too.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Dare I say it?

I think I can finally say that spring is here. I really hope I'm not being too optimistic, this is Wisconsin after all. BUT, the 6" of` snow we got last weekend is gone and the sun has been shining for 3 days now! The temps have been above 50 for 2 days in a row, the rest of the week supposedly will be above 50, too, and last night it didn't get below freezing! I am so excited that this may be it. The real thing. Spring.

I just don't know if I can put away the winter things yet. Part of me says that if I do, it'll jinx things. This time of year I yearn to break out the sandals (those of you who know me know I HATE wearing socks and shoes) the light coats, the mud boots. My closet looks so much better when it's not cluttered with hats, mittens, scarves, snow pants, big jackets, and bulky winter boots. The entryway in general looks better because we don't have those random things lying around, either, just waiting to be put in it's home.

We did do one thing that signifies spring, though. We put some of the yard toys out. Obviously the play set and climbers stay in place all winter, but the small slides, ride-on toys and small climber all get put into storage over winter under the porch. The girls were so excited last night to play on the swings, go down the slides, serve up imaginary ice cream (it was the BEST raspberry & chocolate ice cream I've ever had) in their playhouse. They also played some basketball and rode their bikes an endless number of times up and down the driveway.

So hopefully I'm not going to jinx us, but I'll say it anyway. Finally. Happy Spring!

**It's really here! I went for my walk on Tuesday night and it was silent besides the howling wind. I took my walk last night at the same time and on the same route and what did I hear? Frogs! The swamps were just buzzing with that noise that I love so much. And if the frogs are out, that means the ground is no longer frozen and that means it really is Spring!

Monday, April 14, 2008

We're back from the doc

And the stats don't make sense. Mikayla's weight sounds right, she's finally over 20lbs! She weighs in at a hefty 22 lbs, which is about 35th %ile. She's always been a peanut on the weight-side, so that sounded good. But the height, nuh-uh, not right. For one thing, they measured her standing up for the first time. You all know that to get an accurate height you need to stand straight, feet together and heels against the wall, right? Now you all remember we're talking about 15-month-old Mikayla. She didn't stand still, let alone tall, straight, feet together and heels against the wall. 29" was the measurement. 10th %ile. I don't think so. I will measure her myself when she wakes up from her nap, if only to satisfy my own curiosity.

Now, to give the doc's office a chance, the nurse today was one I've never seen before, so she's either new to the practice or new to the practice and fresh out of school. I don't know, but I'll put the measurements down to inexperience and just double-check at her next appt.

UPDATE: I measured Mikayla laying down and double checked 3 times. Each time I came up with 31.5", which is much more believable to me.

**I posted a few times earlier this morning, so check below

Please say a prayer

for our friend, Marty. Marty went to school with my sister-in-law, but Andy and I have known him for years. The guys have played ball together, he's been like an honorary uncle to Alayna in particular, he's been a very close friend to my sister-in-law Alicia for years and we've known the family for longer than I can think of. Marty is only 22 and over the weekend had an unknown tumor in his brain burst. He was taken to the hospital and then airlifted to a city hospital, where he underwent surgery yesterday morning. He is doing okay but they don't know his prognosis at this time. He could be just fine with time and therapy, but he could be paralyzed. They just don't know yet. So please, if you get a chance, say a little prayer for Marty and his family. They could really use it. Thanks!

On our own

The girls and I were man-less this weekend. Daddy went fishing with some friends in Northern Minnesota, hoping to catch the fish that start moving when the ice goes out on the rivers. He had marginal luck and caught a good number of fish, but nothing too big or fantastic. But he had a lot of fun, and for that we're all glad.

So what did us girls do? We hunkered down. You see, it snowed about 6" between Friday and Saturday. Seriously. I'm done. Enough already. But we didn't let that stop us too much. Alayna didn't have school on Friday because of the weather and I didn't have any daycare kiddos, so we lounged around during the day and watched it snow. We played games, watched a movie, did some housework, danced to kids' music. It was fun. Then Auntie Amanda came over and we played a rousing game of Life! Then we had a pizza picnic and some cheesecake before putting the girls to bed. Then 2 other friends came over and we had a mini girls' night. We watched Dirty Dancing and The Notebook, ate yummy snacks, talked a lot and stayed up way too late. It was fun, even if it was tiring.

Saturday we did much of the same as Friday: movies, games, playing, housework. The snow continued to fall and I consulted my calendar several times to make sure it really was April. That afternoon my sister came over again and we watched Last of the Mohicans, then headed to our parents' house for dinner and planning of my cousin's baby shower. By this time the snow had at least stopped falling, though the wind was howling and blowing it all over. When we got home and I put the girls to bed, I couldn't fall asleep (this is a common ailment when Andy's gone) so I turned on the tv and remembered that it was a free Starz weekend! So I watched 2 movies I'd been wanting to see, Step Up and Stomp the Yard. Both are dance movies and though I was tired, they made me want to get up and dance. Or at the very least learn how to dance like that at some point. It most likely won't happen, as I have no coordination. But I can still have a bit of the dream, right?

Sunday morning was a little hectic, getting everyone up, dressed, fed and out the door in time for church by myself, but I DID IT! Woohoo, score one for Mommy. It was my day to teach Sunday school, too, so we did our lessons and then headed into town for lunch. Lilly was spending the day with her best friend, and Alayna, Mikayla and I were headed with the 4H to a traveling Smithsonian exhibit about fences and land use. It was interesting, though I thought there would be more involved in the whole exhibit. When we got home there was a surprise waiting for us...DADDY! The girls were so excited and could barely stand me pulling completely into the garage and getting unbuckled from their seats so they could give him hugs and kisses.

While the older girls could understand that Daddy would be back in a day or two, Mikayla didn't and couldn't comprehend that. She was missing her daddy pretty bad, especially Sunday morning when she heard a man's voice on the tv. She swore it was Daddy and went around the house, yelling "Dada! Dadd-eeeeeee!!" Then she broke down sobbing and didn't fully recover until she woke up from her nap hours later. Needless to say, she was probably the most excited of the girls to see their Daddy when we got home.

Now today, things are back to the normal bump and grind. Daddy's at work, Alayna's at school, daycare kids are here, and the snow should be melting (they're saying 55 today, but we'll see) Mikayla also has her 15 month check-up later this morning, so I'll be back to post when we get home.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Wedding Planning 101

If anyone is looking for a good laugh, unbelievable "tact" and great wedding planning advice, I recommend CMT's new show, "My Big Redneck Wedding." Seriously, it has everything you could ever dream of to help a bride-to-be plan her future wedding. Wild pig hunting for the bachelor party, then serving up said wild pigs at the reception? Check. Camo tuxes and wedding dresses? Check. Taxidermy proudly displayed near the altar? Check. Mud-bogging or a demo derby in your wedding attire? Check. Bride missing her teeth on the wedding day and being offered her mom's? Double check. It's great! Now, I have no issues with most of the above things. I am a little redneck myself and like to mud-bog or take in a demo derby here and there. I have a husband who hunts and has deer antlers in our home. But when you combine it all together and throw in a wedding? Who could ask for more?! What was I thinking way back when we got hitched and all we had was a simple ceremony in a church and reception at the local community center? Where was this show then?

**As a related aside, last night I told Alayna that she almost looked a little redneck with her teeth missing and that huge gaping hole right in front. Lilly looked at me funny, looked at Alayna and proclaimed, "You don't have a red neck, Nayna!"

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Happy Birthday, Gramma!

Today is my Gramma's 71st birthday! She is a very special lady who is always there for an ear to listen, but you also have to be willing to listen to her advice, too, whether you want it or not! She's full of life and zest and attitude, and that's just how we love her. She's a fantastic mother to her kids, grandmother to us grandkids and great-grandmother to my kids!


And for her birthday present? Cataract surgery. Fun, huh? But I just heard from my mom that everything went well and she's home and taking a bit of a nap. If I know Gramma, she'll be back out dancing and whooping it up in no time.

Movie Game

I'm borrowing this from my friend LeeAnne's blog. It's a fun game where I provide quotes from my favorite movies and you all try to guess what movie it's from! Here are the rules:
  1. Pick 10 of your favorite movies.
  2. Go to IMDb and find a quote from each movie.
  3. Post them on your blog for everyone to guess.
  4. Strike it out when someone guesses correctly, and put who guessed it and the movie. (I can't find a strike-through command, so I'm just going to colorize the ones that have been guessed.)

And one rule for those of you filling it out:

5. Looking them up is cheating, please don’t.

Without further ado, then, here are quotes from 10 of my favorite movies … Your job is to name the movie each quote comes from. You can make a guess by leaving a comment, or email me directly.

  1. "The man's crazy. Loco. Always hanging out around those kinky strip bars. You know, the ones where the men take their clothes off. That's of course if he's taken his medication. " Grumpy Old Men, Amanda
  2. "Your car is uglier than I am. Oops, that didn't come out right. " American Grafitti, Amanda
  3. "No, you submit, do you hear? You be strong, you survive... You stay alive, no matter what occurs! I will find you. No matter how long it takes, no matter how far, I will find you." Last of the Mohicans, LeeAnne
  4. "Ty Cobb wanted to play, but none of us could stand the son-of-a-bitch when we were alive, so we told him to stick it! " Field of Dreams, Amanda
  5. "What better job in all the world than build a bridge? Bring land over water. Bring worlds together. " The Ghost and the Darkness (excellent true story about the lions of Tsavo attacking a bridge building camp in Africa)
  6. "It wouldn't be inaccurate to assume that I couldn't exactly not say that it is or isn't almost partially incorrect." Shrek 3 (Pinochio trying not to lie about Shrek's journey)
  7. "Me? I'm scared of everything. I'm scared of what I saw, I'm scared of what I did, of who I am, and most of all I'm scared of walking out of this room and never feeling the rest of my whole life the way I feel when I'm with you. " Dirty Dancing, Heather
  8. "I have nipples, Greg, could you milk me? " Meet the Parents, Momto3Monkeys (you were close enough, LOL)
  9. "That was totally wicked!" The Incredibles, Kandace
  10. "I have an even better idea. I'm going to place him in an easily escapable situation involving an overly elaborate and exotic death." Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (the first one) Momto3Monkeys

Toothless Wonder

Alayna lost her third tooth yesterday, the first one she's lost on the top. This tooth was hanging on for dear life and REALLY didn't want to leave the safe haven of her mouth. I'm not kidding. It was loose for a good 3 months or more before Alayna finally pulled it out yesterday morning while at school. I was surprised when she came home and bursted through the door, exclaiming "I pulled out my tooth!" See, just yesterday morning I had looked at it and said, "You know, it would take just the tiniest twist for that tooth to come out." And Alayna promptly snapped her mouth shut and said "Don't touch it!"

Monday, April 7, 2008

Movie Time

I'm back and the silence is broken...I have daycare kids here, my girls are awake and the music is on.

Yesterday was a rainy (yes-rainy, not snowy!!!!) Sunday so after church we rented some movies and lounged around as a family. We watched Alvin and the Chipmunks and UnderDog. Both were pretty cute movies and the girls loved them. One thing we didn't realize was that Jason Lee stars in both movies! He's Dave in Chipmunks and the voice of UnderDog/Shoe Shine. Anyway, as any rainy/movie day needs, we snuggled on the couches under blankets, ate popcorn and drank lemonade. Mikayla can't have popcorn, but she was happy as can be sitting in the little papason chair, eating her Cheerios and having a sippy of water. It was too cute to see her so proud of herself for being like the big girls.

One thing I really wish I would have gotten video of was the girls dancing. In Alvin and the Chipmunks, there is a lot of music, obviously. Each time a song would come on all 3 girls would jump up to dance. It was so cute to see them all boogying down to the music. Usually, Alayna would do something, Lilly would copy, and Mikayla would try to copy. LOL They all love to dance and may be the next Go-Gos or something. We'll see. But I promise that one of these days I'll get the dance routine on video so you all can see it. Talent scouts can e-mail me later!

Peace and quiet

I just had to come here and yell: IT'S QUIET AND PEACEFUL IN MY HOUSE! Obviously I wasn't about to yell that here, for fears of waking up 2 sleeping little girls. That's right, it's 7:45am and Alayna's on the school bus, Mikayla & Lilly are still asleep, Andy's at work and my daycare kids are yet to arrive. Ahhhh, it's like a soothing medicine for the soul...I hope you all can get some of that medicine soon. But be careful, I've heard it can be habit forming.

Update on Tricia

I have been meaning to update about Tricia and her transplant surgery but have had a very busy weekend. In case you all are wondering and haven't peeked at their blog, she did indeed have the surgery and is doing very well! She's still in ICU, but they have had her up and walking and yesterday walked without any breathing support at all! That's amazing, as she hasn't been without breathing support since Oct. She still has a long road ahead of her, but she is doing great. Thank you for the prayers you sent up on her behalf. I can only imagine how much it means to them to literally have thousands and thousands of people praying for their family.

Little Gwyneth is doing well, too! She's eating from a bottle every other feeding and the nurses are amazed at her strength. She over 2 lbs 10 oz and really starting to fill out. Keep praying, as those prayers are being heard and answered!

Friday, April 4, 2008

An Equation all parents know...

Newly cleaned up toys
+ Mommy's quick trip to the bathroom
+ 15 month old that was quietly reading a book =

I was seriously in the bathroom about 45 seconds, just long enough to relieve myself and wash my hands. I should have known something was up when I didn't have her banging on the bathroom door and sticking her fingers under it for me to grab and tickle (our main floor bathroom is very small). All of those toys and books were neatly stacked and arranged in the cubby that she is sitting in. And I know it was Mikayla, because she was the only one not napping at the time.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

I can type

This was kind of fun. I remember doing tests in computer classes back in school, but didn't really know where I was at currently. If you'd like to test yourself, just click on the box or the link below!

81 words


Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Say a prayer if you get a chance...

Tricia has received a call that there is a possible match for her double-lung transplant. They don't know a lot of details, but it does sound promising. They should know more this afternoon and she could possibly be in surgery as soon as tonight if it all works out! AND it's Nathan's birthday, so what a gift that would be-a chance at a longer life with his beautiful wife!

UPDATE: It's a go! She should be in surgery any time now, if she's not already there. There is a small chance that even in the operating room, they could find it's not a match, but that doesn't sound like it's common at all. Please join so many of us in prayer for this family, that Tricia does well with the surgery and recovery; that her doctors, nurses and support staff are skilled and do their job well; and that the rest of Nathan and Tricia's family and friends have comfort and peace from our Father. I'll update again when I know more, but it will most likely be in the morning.

A new picture

Okay, a few people have asked for a picture of my nose ring so I thought I'd oblige. Please excuse the somewhat "duh" look on my face, as well as the open closet behind me. I was using the bathroom mirror to see the display on my camera, as it was the easiest place to make sure I could get a halfway decent picture. My mom thinks I should call my piercing Charlie, or maybe not...

Congrats Glenn & Theresa!

Andy's cousin Glenn and his girlfriend, Theresa, welcomed their new little girl yesterday afternoon. Kallie Marie was 7lbs 3 oz and 20" long, almost exactly what Lilly was when she was born! I am so glad to hear that a little girl has joined that side of the family, as Glenn has 2 brothers and one nephew, no female children (except daughters-in-law) or grand-children yet. Congrats again on Kallie's birth!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

The blahs

I have been feeling a little blah lately and I'm starting to wonder if I've finally caved. See, the kids have had the worst winter in their history this year, constantly battling colds and the ickies. I have been so thankful to not get those colds and the flu. I don't know how I haven't, but I figure that God knew I had to take care of them so He wouldn't allow me to get sick. Who knows.

Well, I have finally been showing those awful symptoms for the past week or so. I have been achey, my tummy hurts, I have headaches. Ugh, I hate being sick (who loves it, right?) and have no idea what I'm going to do.

Now I REALLY have no idea what I'm going to do:

*I posted more, so look below*

I (heart) Spaghetti...

April Fools!!!!

The post 2 above this one is a TOTAL April Fools joke! Wow, would I have a LOT of explaining to do (and then the docs would, too!) hehehe, you can all yell at me now...I couldn't think of anything that would be outrageous but yet believable, so I went with the pregnancy after vasectomy route. And that pic was one I borrowed from on-line.