Saturday, December 6, 2014

18 Months Old!

Clara turned 18 months old three days ago!

She is really learning how to play with Grace, and Grace loves having a playmate!  Grace likes to tell her what to do and she happily obliges, toddling after her from one room to another.  I often hear them chattering about this or that in the mornings before we get up, and Grace often wants to wake her up from her naps so she can have her playmate back.

I also haven't posted about Thanksgiving.  We had a lovely weekend with no work and lots of trips to the park.  We made tons of food and it was a bit hectic.  The girls liked helping some, but craved our attention after too long.  We got it done eventually!

I usually take a group picture right before we eat, but it was too crazy to manage that.  We had our neighbors over, which was fun, and the girls were all hungry!!

We put up the tree and the Christmas decorations and the girls love that.  I dressed them up and tried to get them to pose for a holiday picture.  Snort* that did NOT work.  I have a bunch of pictures of them running around with glee instead.

Grace totally gets it when it comes to the holidays this year.  Clara loves reading the Christmas books and demands Frosty the snowman a million times a day by saying "Thump a thump thump!"  She also loves to yell out "nose!" and point to every picture of Santa Claus.  

I've been really sick this week, so I'm hoping I'll be actually able to get up and do some fun things with them soon!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Grammy and Grandudes and Mahler 2

Grammy and Grandudes came to visit!

They timed their trip so they could be here while Jason and I played Mahler 2.  Not only did they enjoy hearing the piece, but they helped babysit during all the rehearsals!  

This is unfortunately the only picture with Grammy in it.  Both of them were stricken with a nasty illness shortly after they arrived.  They were troopers and worked through it, but we tried to keep things as low key as possible.

The weather was amazing.  Grandudes is wearing a t-shirt outside!  (and a fantastic t-shirt too, I might add).  They both took the girls on daily walks and trips to the park, which they adored.

The girls loved the constant attention.  I loved getting a shower before noon and coming home to a clean kitchen!  They really helped us out a ton.

  They were here for nine days, but the time flew by so fast!

Monday, November 10, 2014

First Haircut!

Grace received her first haircut today!

This is her before picture in the lobby of the hair salon.  You see, she needed a hair cut because she has an uncontrollable habit of twirling her hair.  She twirls all day long, and especially in bed.  She will get up in the morning with a huge rat's nest of knots that we have to carefully rip out, one by one.  It is safe to say that no one enjoys that process!  She was also starting to get some patchy bald spots on the sides of her head.  Something had to be done!

It made me sad to cut off her beautiful girlish length, but I think it will make her happier and more comfortable.

See?!  Happier already.

We hope that when it grows out again, she will be rid of her twirling habit.  At least it still has some curls... (sniff)

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Halloween Family Style

Happy Halloween!  We really geeked it up this year and did family themed costumes.

Just in case you need help here:  Jason is a jellyfish, Grace is an octopus, Clara is a lobster, and I am a squid.

I made them hold hands.

Showing off the legs.

An adorable lobster.

Grace and Avery at school.

Jason's costume glowed with a string of Christmas lights and glow stick necklaces.  Neighbor Ada held his hand most of the time.  He was pretty much the coolest with the toddler crowd.

And then this happened!  Avery convinced her parents to be a super hero family!  It was a great Halloween!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Grace Jumps a Thousand Times

We are enjoying this bit of nice fall weather we are having!

Both girls love to be outside.  Today Grace had a ball hanging out in the front yard while Jason sealed the front porch.

The chairs sitting in the lawn became fun places from which to jump!

One, two...

Three!  (or most likely, threefourfivesixsevenEIGHT!)

I couldn't love this girl more if I tried!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Clara Helps

Clara loves that she can walk!

She loves to help.  She likes to take dishes out of the dishwasher and put the silverware away.  She often brings me things and says "thank you!"  

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Pumpkins and Garage Doors

It has been a while, so sorry folks!

I tried to do a fall photo shoot and it only turned out so so.  Clara wouldn't look at the camera, and Grace wouldn't stop twirling her hair.  But they sure look cute in the outfits handmade by my talented friend Kathleen!

Grace hasn't mastered the art of smiling for a camera.  At least you know when her smile is genuine!

Grace loves this pumpkin that she received at preschool.  Here she is burying it so that it will "grow and we can turn it into a giant smoothie!"  You'll like that, Dad!

A couple weeks back, Jason decided he was going to paint the garage door.  A short time into scraping, he dislodged a huge rotten chunk and abandoned that idea.  Jason installed this new garage door in under a day.  He is so handy!  Grace loves the new garage door and loves to point it out to any visitors, neighbors passing by or mail people.

The old door has not found its final resting place yet.  Things have just been far too busy with the work season in full swing.  (I think that is part of a weight bench on top of the heap.)

Clara is walking up a storm now!  She loves to push things like this tea cart, but she is comfortable toddling around sans walker too.  Some of her new words include Pumpkin and Bandaid.


Monday, September 22, 2014

33 Years Old!

The love of my life turned 33 yesterday!

I gave him a new bicycle seat, and here he is back from his first ride on it!

Monday, September 15, 2014

Anne's Baby Shower

Gini and I threw a baby shower for our friend Anne!

She was there for our showers and now it is her turn!

We did a bicycle theme because Anne loves to bike!  But probably not right now in her current state, I'm guessing.

Jason graciously allowed me to steal his bicycle wheel to make this ribbon sculpture.

She received many lovely things including this "Team Llama" bib and onesie set.  Anne and David call themselves Team Llama (don't ask, I don't know why) so this is perfect for their new team member!  

Baby showers are a blast to plan.  I wish I had way more time to craft up a million decorations, but I think Gini and I managed to pull together something quite respectable.  We make a good team!

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Second Day of School!

Grace enjoyed her second day of school!

Avery was sick the first day, but she was ready to go in a big way today!  Grace is being a goofball as always.  The girl in the middle is our neighbor Ada!  We've had a few play dates and she is a sweet girl.

It is going to be a fun year!  I already have homework.  I'm bringing the snack next Tuesday!

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

First Day of School!

Grace started preschool today!

She seemed to really enjoy it!  

I don't know what I was worried about, but I was a bit of a wreck while she was gone and I wasn't expecting that.  I guess it is conditioning me for future milestones!

Friday, August 29, 2014

Clara Walks

Clara walks finally!  It is funny that both my girls took their time with this milestone.  They are cautious, we think!  It is sweet to see Grace cheering her on.  She loves to give people "presents"!

This was first thing in the morning, so please excuse the bedhead.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Bicycles, Doctors and Sisters

Grace received a balance bike for her birthday!

She enjoys riding around the house.  She is quite slow still but she has always been a cautious girl.

We take it outside sometimes and she rides up and down the driveway.

Jason and Avery stayed with us for a couple days while Jason was in between summer gigs.  He was feeling sick but I think the girls fixed him up nicely with Grace's doctor set.

Doctor Grace and Doctor Avery know just what to do!

Clara loves to see what big sister is doing!  Here, Grace is playing with water in the sink, something that can entertain her for quite some time.  Clara would love to get in there too!  Grace gets annoyed sometimes when Clara breaks up her race track or destroys her tower, but for the most part I think she seems pretty patient with her.  She often invites Clara to play and Clara always obliges!

Grace loves to play with Clara in her crib.  Sometimes they are in there giggling and laughing and mom and dad actually get a break for a moment!  It usually ends with Clara getting upset because Grace is playing too rough, but it is nice for a while.

Grace starts school next week!  Stay tuned for pictures from that!

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Balsam Lake - The Wildlife

There was a lot to see at Balsam Lake!

I'm pretty pleased with this picture of Eric!  I don't know if it ever made it as his profile picture on Facebook, but it should have.  He really enjoyed the fishing at the lake, and managed to catch several (can't remember the exact count) bass or something.

Another great fishing shot.  Jason also participated and had some good male bonding, I think.

We spied this Bald Eagle several times!

These pictures were made possible with my telephoto (thanks Dad!).

These loons went swimming by at sunset one night.

There was also a family of loons living right near the house!