Friday, January 22, 2010

Chuck E Cheese Says Happy Birthday!

To finish off my fun birthday weekend, we went with my family to Chuck E Cheese to celebrate my birthday, my grandma's birthday, and Landon's birthday. And really what 30 year old shouldn't celebrate her birthday at Chuck E Cheese (not to mention my 86 year old Grandma!)

It was a busy night full of lots of birthday parties, but we were able to eat lots of pizza and cake, play some games and dance with Mr. Cheese!

The guests of honor, Grandma, Landon and me (with Katie and Jillian too!)

Papa took Jillian up for a close-up view of Chuck E Cheese!
Jillian probably wasn't a fan of turning her back to her new friend.
Meredith was a big winner at one of the games and was very excited to show off her tickets!
Landon and Krunkle dancing to birthday songs.

Monday, January 18, 2010

My Totally Radical 30th

To celebrate my 30th birthday, Neal planned an 80s themed party! We were so excited that almost everyone was able to pull together an 80s outfit and I had a blast! The night started off a little rocky with a trip to Cook's for Jillian. Although Neal and I got to our own party a little late, the important thing was, Jillian was checked out, and they assured us she was going to be just fine!

I am so blessed to have so many great friends that were all there to celebrate with me!
This is the picture Jackie dubbed "Student Council 1985"
Neal made a great Don Johnson.
Julie had on some amazing jeans.

Jillian is 9 months old

I am a few days behind because we have been having lots of fun this week! Jillian was officially 9 months old last Thursday! I say this every month, but I just can't figure out how this time goes so quickly! Jillian is just turning into this little girl before our eyes!

Since last month, she started crawling on all fours and is now a totaly pro! She also loves to pull up and climb on EVERYTHING and is also cruising around anything that will help keep her up on her feet. She loves to watch and laugh at anything her sister is doing as always, and now her new mobility helps her miss even less. We often look up and watch her as she crawls away down the hall after climbing up our step from the living room. She has figured out the hallway is the key to fun - the playroom with all the greatest toys, her room, and the bathroom, where she tries to reach in and help herself to toys. This little girl has a degree of confidence and guts that her big sister took much longer to master.

Jillian loves to climb into and on everything. Playing in the dishwasher is lots of fun, especially pulling the drawers in and out. But she also loves to scale her sister's bedside step stool and will even push anyone out of the way to get to it! (And look at that hair! Serious bedhead!)

She loves to laugh and at just about anything. Of course, like I said before, her favorite laughter inducing subject, is Meredith, but she also loves to watch Daddy be silly or make funny noises.

She is also in love with all animals, often following behind Coki, Kendal, or my parent's cats, shouting "eee!" She even will "eee" at cats or dogs she sees in pictures.

She has been pretty sick this month but hopefully is reaching the end of it (after heading to the ER when we couldn't get into the doctor last weekend).

This month has been so much fun and as we are already into month 10, I know we are just getting started!
We also hit the doctor for her 9 month check up on Thursday, here are her stats:
Height: 29 inches (93%)
Weight: 19 lbs 15 oz (75%)
Head: 49 cm (again no percentile to save me some grief!)

Oh, how I had forgotten...

Dear Tupperware cabinet,
I am sorry that I have taken you for granted. I know I just shove whatever plastic pieces come out of the dishwasher into you, not worrying if there is a lid that matches a bowl or if the plastic is stained. I know that I have neglected to update your contents since the days of wedding showers (with the exception of a few pieces I have inadvertently not returned to their rightful owners). I have now remembered how much joy you can bring a little girl and how much peace you can bring to a cooking mom.
Jillian on the hunt
The joy of success.

How did I ever forget how much fun this was? Here are some shots of Meredith at about 10 months old playing at our old house, with many of the same pieces of tupperware!
Meredith got in on the action for old times sake and for a little sisterly bonding!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

One Small Step

We have a very 70s fashionable sunken-living room, which means we have one small step to get from the living room to the rest of the house. Jillian has been dreaming of the day when she can climb that little step to follow her sister as she runs down the hall. Tonight, Neal and Jillian were in the living room, I was in the dining room and I hear Neal say "Look at you!" and there she was all the way up into the hallway and rapidly crawling toward the playroom. There, she found her coveted new car that Aunt Katie and Uncle Neil got her for Christmas.

Climbing the step was worth it the second time around with her car as her prize again!
This workout had her ready for bed, thankfully!

Look how proud she looks
I think I am in trouble...

Friday, January 1, 2010

Ringing in 2010

We spent New Years Eve with some really fun friends with a progressive dinner. The dinner started with appetizers at our house and then there were stops for dinner, and finally desserts. We had a great time with a re-gift exchange and of course great food!
The kids stayed at the dessert house to keep everyone from having to get NYE babysitters. Jillian decided that instead of sleeping, she should join the party just in time for the countdown!


We gave Christmas cookie decorating one last hurrah this week with some good friends. The Walkers and the Steeles have sweet boys that are just a few weeks apart and are only a few months older than Jillian. It was a blast being pregnant with these girls and has been fun seeing the babies grow up over the past few months too.

Meredith had fun being the oldest and getting to get all covered in frosting decorting the cookies. Jillian had a taste or two of sugar cookie, but even after watching her friends really chow down on them, she still had a hard time being convinced that solids are all they are hyped to be.
A little evidence that she was sneaking bites on her lips...
Jillian wasn't too upset that she didn't get to help decorate as long as she got to play with Daddy
The two boys were not about to turn down cookies!
Look at this creative cookie snowman

Stay at Home Daddy Week 2

After such a fun week with Neal off after Thanksgiving, we were all thrilled to get another one this past week! We planned some fun as a family, a day for just the two of us, and Neal was just looking forward to making breakfast for Meredith (who loved that he did that for her instead of me while he was off before)

On his first day off, he and I had a full movie day! We saw Up in the Air, had lunch, then saw Avatar in 3D and then went out to dinner. It was such a nice, relaxing day - and we both loved getting to see 2 movies in one day - not to mention eating just as a couple two meals in a row! What a treat.

Later that week, we headed to the bowling alley - a new thing that Meredith had been asking us to do together. We had a great time - starting with Meredith's first turn - she (with Neal's help, of course) bowled her first ball. We waited, and waited and waited for it to get to the pins. Then, not only did it stop, it started rolling backwards. Luckily, the man who came to retrieve the ball also brought us a "slide" that she used to launch her ball for all the future frames. Everytime she would bowl, she would turn around and cheer "I won! I won!" She also liked to try to help me by staying right by my side and walk down with me or hold onto my pants. I would like to claim that my fear of whapping her in the head with a 12 lb ball contributed to my terrible performance, but I don't think that contributed that much!
Meredith using the "slide" to help the ball get down the lane a bit
My turn to "help" her bowl. Although, I was the one that needed the most help
The proof of how bad I am at bowling. And this was actually the "good" score card. I don't even want to go into how bad the other game was.
Jillian trying to sneak down to the lane for her turn.
Neal and his bowling girls.

Today we took just Meredith to see The Princess and the Frog. She has been very excited to see the movie with the green princess! She got a little "bored" in the middle, but in the end she said "I SO loved that!" Her favorite part was when the frogs turned back into the prince and the princess at the end, of course!

Ice Skating!

Finally, after dreaming of her chance to get out on ice skates, Meredith got her turn! Meredith has loved to watch the ice skaters at our mall for the longest time and has been asking to go forever! Neal has been looking forward to taking her skating too - I actually remember just a few days before we found out we were pregnant with Meredith, Neal and I were at an ice skating rink and saw some little kids. While resting my non-ice skater legs, we daydreamed about someday having a little one who he would teach to skate.

The rink was a little crowded, but Meredith got right out there! Neal pretty much dragged her around the rink for most of the time, but that made it that much more fun for her (and hard for him!) She pictured herself doing turns and sticking her leg up in the air, but seemed to have fun just going around holding on tight to Daddy.

Daddy helping Meredith put on her first pair of ice skates

Taking a much needed break by holding onto the side (instead of Daddy!)

Jillian entertaining herself since I wouldn't let her ice skate this time
She did have fun watching everyone go round and round - especially when she got to see her two favorite skaters.
And no trip to the mall would be complete for Meredith without a ride on the carousel! And what a treat to get to ride with Daddy this time.