Monday, October 27, 2008

Rethinking Christmas | a community of advent conspirers

Was introduced to a great project that you can check out above. I would encourage you to watch the's right on! I think it's a great perspective for all of us.

Rethinking Christmas | a community of advent conspirers

Friday, October 24, 2008

Busy Season

It's been a busy but fun season for us right now. Riley's in San Francisco this week but he'll be home in about a week. Don't know what he's doing but we've been able to talk almost daily. He did call to say he was gonna pick up "I heart SF" t-shirts for the girls...he thought that would be funny given his job.

Riley's been gone a lot since Saedi was born, and I think he and I share the common fear that Saedi won't connect with him as her Daddy. God has amazed us, though, and it's never been an issue. She has this Daddy Doll (a stuffed pillow-doll with Riley's picture on it...check out that she adores. Everytime Ellie and I give it to her Saedi laughs, kicks her feet and says, "A-Da, A-Da" (Da-da backwards). Modern technology is on our side as well. Just last night Saedi was going crazy talking with Riley on the web cam, and I included a picture of her chatting and waving hi.

The girls and I have been staying busy with various fall parties with friends, the battalion, Mom's Club, and church. Just today we went to a retirement home with the girls dressed in their costumes. Saedi had a blast with the people, but Ellie was way more interested in who had candy to give to her. lol

I guess the latest news is again about Saedi. She's officially had her first tantrum. Wouldn't you know it was over oatmeal and butternut squash! She refused to eat (which she never does), shoved her face to the side and WAILED. "When she's good she's good, but when she's bad she's very very bad." Someone asked me if I won. No. I gave in and sent her to bed. I guess the babe was just tired. :)

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

The Deck is Finished

So, Riley finished the deck over a week ago, but I keep forgetting to announce it. The deck is finished! and it looks amazing. I've becoming increasingly impressed with Riley's carpentry skills and my mind is constantly spinning now with thoughts of new projects: wooden blocks, closet shelves, bookcases...what has he gotten himself into. As you can see, Ellie and the handsome Toth boys, Caleb & Joshua, were having a nice time on the new addition.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Ellie and Emmy

Ellie has been spending a lot of time with her friend Emery (Emmy) and here are some nice photos of them together: first at the pumpkin patch on Wednesday and then today eating snacks...thanks for watching Ellie this morning, Jen!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Lake Barkley

We spent Columbus Day hanging out at Lake Barkley. We mainly spent the day treking around the lake exploring with they eyes of a two-year old. Ellie pointed out that Daddy forgot to bring a fishing pole, so the two of them rigged something up with a stick, line, and bobbers they found. The bait was were the fish. Ellie had a blast, though. She even realized the pole didn't have a reel, so she invented one with more sticks. It's been awesome watching her creative side develop more each day. The beach area was closed for the season, but Riley still took the girls swimming off shore anyway. We ended the day with a nice picnic lunch & then ice cream at the Dairy Dip. It was wonderful spending a holiday with Riley home.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Apartment Therapy ohdeedoh | How To: Amuse Toddlers

Check out this practical article I read this morning! This one is worthy of being passed along to all of you who interact with toddlers...what great ideas...some old and some new. (Be sure to click on the link "How to Amuse Toddlers Instructable" within the article below)

Apartment Therapy ohdeedoh | How To: Amuse Toddlers

I have three fun childhood play memories that I'll share.
1. Traveling the World: filling up a small bag with food (whatever I could pack myself- graham crackers are the only food I remember) for my journey & then traveling around the perimeter of my yard (I grew up on 5 it took awhile to travel the world)observing and playing as I traveled.
2. Stair Airplane: lining up all my stuffed animals and baby dolls on either side of the stairs as airplane passengers. Since I was the pilot (of course) I would sit at the bottom of the stairs steering the legs of a flipped over chair. Mid-way through the flight I became the flight attendant and would serve snacks to the passengers. Towards the end of the journey I would shake baby powder in the air as smoke or as an air freshener...why did I do that? Who knows...the idea is to be creative.
3. Couch Driving: sitting on the back of the couch with my feet dangling over the back, driving an imaginary whatever (car, fire engine, school bus, etc). Sound crazy, but it pacified me!

Please share your ideas too...What are your favorite play memories as a child or what are some creative ways to play that you've discovered?

Friday, October 10, 2008

Deck & Dancing

Riley started building a new deck for us a few days ago & he's been working on it late every night. Our friend Jesse came over at 9 this morning to help Ry with more of the foundation. Those guys worked non-stop all day with only a short break for lunch & a quick trip to Lowe's in the afternoon. It's pretty amazing to see how much those guys accomplished in such a short amount of time...and without experience. They do look pretty good sporting their new tool belts, though. wink wink

While the guys were busy working tonight, Nat & Jen came over (with Brooke, Meadow & Emmy, of course) & we had lots of laughs eating tasty Mexican take-out & dancing with our girls (The next time I'm having a horrible day, someone please remind me of how adorable Emmy-gorilla-sumo-chic is when the tunes kick on). Ellie managed to fall in the toilet (yes, sticking her foot on a turd), but we (actually Nat)got her cleaned up & all the girlies had a blast in the bathtub together. Add a little wine to the mix, Jen's delicious frosted brownies, & a good kithen cleaning (compliments of Nat) and a good time was had by all.

Jesse, Nat, Brooke & Meadow take off for Canada in the morning, and even though they'll be gone just a few weeks they will be sorely missed by all of us pathetic friends who rely on them way too much!!! Thanks for a fun night you guys!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Bare Bickets

Riley got home from TX late Friday night & it has been wonderful having him home. Ellie is once again her Daddy's shadow following him everywhere. Saedi now claps when Riley comes in the room & she's almost as comfortable around him as she is me (which says a lot since she's a momma's girl). While Riley went back to a regular work schedule immediately, we've been able to meet him for lunch almost everyday, and having the nice weather to enjoy together over lunch has been a bonus. We're trying to simply be together as much as possible these 10 days that we have together, so we've cancelled a lot of our regular evening activities and said no to some new propositions...and I'm proud of us for making time for each other (it's not easy to do). Our exception was last night whe I went to a much-needed girls' night out military coffee and had a blast while Riley took the girls on a date to Chuck E Cheese & Cold Stone Creamery. Other than that litle bit of excitment, I've been power washing the house & Riley is adding onto our deck...both large projects that are helping keep our attention at home this week. I haven't taken many pictures or been very good about updating the blog since Ry got in...but here's a picture of Saedi's bare bickets that I just couldn't resist tonight.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Christian Way Farm

Yesterday we went to Christian Way Farm with our friends, Natalie, Brooke & Meadow. It was the nicest pumpkin patch/farm that I've visited. Ellie's favorite part was preparing the corn for animal feed & then feeding the mule & calves. We lugged the girls through the corn maze, but it was worth it when they were able to pick a pumpkin from the patch. We also enjoyed storytime, laughing at the pigs & goats (lots of babies), swinging, hayride, tricycles, tractors, picnic lunch, and getting lost on the way home...that's right. Brave Nat ended up knocking on someone's door to ask for directions(I followed her incase she got kidnapped)& we got directed back home again. It was a full 5 hours outside & worth the $6!