Thursday, May 28, 2009

Marley Update

Remember this?
That pic was taken the first day or two we had little Miss Marley. She was just a peanut and everyone asked if we were sure she was a Great Dane. "How can she be so little?" "She looks like a black lab pup, are you sure?" Yeah, we're sure.

Marley is now a horse, bordering on moose, and we love her to death. Her head is almost to my hips (I'm 5'6") and she can reach the table top without even lifting her head. She's incredibly gentle with the girls, she loves snuggle time with me and trips to the farm with Andy. She is super protective of us, but also still a little timid of strangers. But don't tell them that, as her size and bark are probably enough to scare bad guys away before they realize she'll bark from a distance only. Her potty training is complete, she whines at the door when she wants out and if you ignore that, she gets in your face. And if you're sitting down on a chair or couch, she can reach your face no problem. She's intelligent and funny and a goofball. We love Marley and Sunny like they are our own children. In some ways they are.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

And so it begins

The summer camping season! We always go camping on Memorial Weekend and it's a great way to start out the summer. We love where we go, what we do and mostly, the people we go with. We all get along so well and have such a blast together. What more could one ask for?

This year, we had some fun and some not-so-fun times. We played games, ate good food, loved some ROCKIN' hair-dos, laughed really hard, rode some lawn-mowers, and enjoyed great company. We also dealt with a swollen shut eye, some tantrums from being over-tired and a little girl who was so busy playing that she forgot about potty a few times. But all in all, nothing serious!

Gladiator Mikayla

Brady (I didn't get individual pics of Kurt & Bob)
Nice hair, guys. Us women are sooo lucky...
Profile shots, check out that hair!
Lilly when she woke up Saturday morning. No idea, but assuming a bite of some sort
Lilly's eye Sunday morning, fully swollen shut
4 of the 6 dogs that were there. They all got along quite well!
Riding the Gator
Kaitlin, Lilly & Mikayla in the trailer
Alayna riding "Silver-member"
Alayna and Andy
It was super dry, so we wore safety glasses to help with the dust.
It was pretty cold once the sun started down, so sweatshirts were a must!
Everyone headed back to the campsite on our mowers

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

She's Listening

Like most parents, we are continually teaching and reminding our children of what is polite, appropriate or nice. We talk about things like please/thank you/you're welcome, bodily functions in public, hitting, proper words to use, etc. We are always being complimented on how polite and well-behaved our girls are, so it must be working to some degree.

A few days ago, we were visiting with some good friends of ours. One of the adults said "shut up" and we immediately heard...

"It's not nice to say shut up! That's naughty and can hurt people's feelings!" Yep, Lilly chimed in and proved that she's been listening to us. When the friend agreed and apologized, Lilly said, "It's okay, but it's not nice to say that." (and to clarify, it was not said to Lilly)

Andy and I didn't know whether we should be mortified that she basically told off an adult or proud that she has been listening to us and stood up for what was right

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Childhood Memories

This weekend, we got together with my dad's side of the family. Dad's one brother and his family were in town, so the whole family went to dinner and back to my Grampa's house to play games and catch up. Being at my Grampa's house always brings back so many memories. My Gramma used to watch us while our parents worked, so we spent many days hanging at their house. And on the days that my dad's parents didn't have us, my mom's parents did. Then, when we were older and in school, once a week my mom's parents would pick us up from school. We'd go to the bakery and get a glass of milk and a donut (chocolate covered for me) then head to their house, where our parents and mom's various siblings would meet us for dinner. Then we'd head to a neighboring school district and swim in their pool. These are some of the most special memories for me as a child. But there are so many things that remind me of my grandparents and catch me when I least expect it. So here are some of the memories and triggers of my childhood...

*Peonies-My Gramma L (Dad's mom) loved peonies and had the most beautiful bushes. I have planted peonies in my own yard, mostly in memory of my Gramma. I always think of her when I smell them or see them in bloom.

*Freshly cut wood and sawdust-My Grampa L worked at a sawmill for years. Every day when he came home from work, we'd sit with him while he had a snack, still covered lightly in sawdust. To this day, I smell sawdust or freshly cut wood and I go back to Gramma's simple, tidy kitchen and a snack with Grampa.

*Lilacs-Gramma C (Mom's mom) has a HUGE lilac bush in her yard and we would always pick them. Then, we'd bring them in and leave them all over the house. This is one of my favorite smells and makes me think of Gramma C.

*Talk radio-My Grampa C used to listen to talk radio constantly. Actually, I don't know that he listened to it so much as had it on for background noise. I was little and didn't pay attention. But whenever I hear talk radio--one local station in particular--I envision Grampa sitting at the head of the kitchen table, reading the paper and sipping coffee.

*Kool Aid-Gramma L used to give this to us as a treat, but we always knew to take a small sip first. She had a habit of forgetting the sugar, as this was before the days of pre-sweetened Kool Aid.

*Donuts-Like I said above, I will forever think of Gramma and Grampa C whenever I eat a donut. I don't have them often, but I owe my love of them to the Grandparents.

*Woodchucks-Whenever I see or hear of a woodchuck (a large, ground-dwelling rodent) I think of my Gramma L. She was a tiny little thing not even 5' tall and the most gentle person you could imagine. She was also a sharpshooter (no kidding!) and on more than one occasion we were startled by a large BOOM! as she would whip up the bathroom window and shoot a woodchuck out in her garden. She'd then carefully unload the shotgun, set it safely out of reach and continue with her day, nonchalantly mentioning to Grampa when he got home that there was a critter near the garden he needed to take care of.

*Sledding-My Gramma and Grampa C have a hill across the driveway from their house. When I was little, the hill was HUGE. I think it's shrunk since then, as it's not as big now as it was when I was little. Must have eroded...yeah, that's it. Anyway, when I was little we loved to go sledding down the hill. We'd pile as many of us as possible on the old toboggan, or ride the fast saucers, and down we'd go over and over and over.

*Songs-Both of my Gramma's loved to rock us and sing us silly songs. Gramma L sang songs about trains, and Gramma C sang songs about bees and peanuts. I sing the same songs to my girls.

*Love-I have the most wonderful grandparents that anyone could ask for. I only have one Gramma and one Grampa left here on earth, but that's neither here nor there. I think of them all often and I am so blessed to have had them in my life, helping mold me into the person I am today. I never doubted for one minute the love that they all had for me. I hope they all know how much I love them, too. And it almost brings tears to my eyes every time I see my girls run to hug and kiss my grandparents. I love that they have a special relationship with them, just like I did.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Say "ahhhhhh"

Mikayla had her first dental check-up last week and she did great! She was super excited and actually let the hygienist clean and count her teeth. She also let the dentist check her teeth, as well. We were all a little shocked, frankly, that she was so willing to let them mess with her. They were expecting just to get her familiar with the office, and I thought she'd at least let them count her teeth, but she surprised us all. I was so proud of her!

Friday, May 8, 2009


Poor baby girl is having a rough morning today, and it all started last night, apparently. We went out to Andy's cousin's land where we go camping, and the girls were playing while us adults worked on different projects. When we finished, we ate dinner, came home and went to bed. Sounds like a nice night, huh? It was. But then Mikayla had a rough night of being up and down, finally settling for the night around midnight. This morning she came downstairs and said, "My hand ouchie."

Yeah, you think? Thankfully Bob and Andy were coming for breakfast before loading some more wood for their land projects. We rubbed Orajel on her palm, Andy and Bob held her, and I performed minor surgery to get the 12 slivers out. We only managed to get out 7, but thankfully they were the bigger 7. The rest are too small and will have to just work their way out. So we're slathering anti-bacterial cream on her palm and trying to get her to keep a band-aid on, but it's not going too well. Poor baby is resting now, with her band-aid and sucker, watching Shrek.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

It's starting...

Softball season starts tonight! Andy plays in a weekly league with severals friends, plus they play tournaments on random weekends here and there. It's a big part of our summer, but it wouldn't feel like summer without it. We spend lots of time warming the bleachers while cheering on Daddy, snacking on popcorn and catching up with the families of the other team members. It's all a good time...well, mostly.

Park Place

The weather has been really nice lately--actually spring-like, no less! We took an afternoon the other day to enjoy the outdoors and headed into the park in town. The girls LOVE going to the park!