Friday, January 7, 2011


Have you ever seen the Corpse Bride? Yeah, me either. But, during a White Elephant Gift Exchange this past December Petey received this:

Keep them in mind - specifically the man - they'll come into play later on in this post.

Anyway, as we all know Christmas has come and gone and it's time for the Christmas tree to come down. Apparently Elliot was a little too eager to get this accomplished. We had planned on taking it down this weekend but last night while we were finishing supper Elliot was apparently messing around and what he actually did we're not sure but we heard a big crash with a bit of jingling. This was accompanied by "Daddy! Daddy! I stuck! I stuck! I stuck!" We found Elliot stuck underneath a tipped over Christmas tree. To be honest it was one of the most hilarious things I've ever seen & I still chuckle when I think about it. Petey picked it up off of him before we thought to take a picture though :(

A few minutes later after picking up ornaments that went flying Petey returned to the kitchen with the Corpse Bride groom (I've learned his name is Victor) and his head declaring he was now officially a true corpse. That completely did me in. I was laughing so hard I could hardly stand up straight! Perhaps it was one of those 'had to be there moments' but it was truly very funny.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

The Talking Toddler

Some of my mommy friends and myself were discussing how many words our little people are saying these days. The little person I'm specifically talking about is Hadley. While it took Elliot awhile to really starting talking a lot there's nothing stopping him now! I would be counting a LONG time before I got to the end of his vocabulary & by that time he no doubt would have added several more words. I love hearing him talk and communicate a lot more now. It's especially nice that I can now understand a great deal of what he's saying to me - definitely cuts down on the frustrated tantrums.

So, I thought it would be fun to compile a list of words Hadley knows. I'll try to get all of them although I make no guarantees!
  1. DaDa - Daddy
  2. Mom - she usually only uses this when upset
  3. Papa - one of her clearest words. She takes great joy in this one.
  4. Mum-Mum - this is a fairly new one but she's mighty proud of it.
  5. Uh-Oh - We hear this a lot.
  6. Vroom - Cars & trucks are her favorite :)
  7. Meow - she can also point out kitties in books
  8. Ma - this means 'more'. She also does the sign for this
  9. Done - she also does the sign for all done
  10. Dan - she LOVES her Uncle Dan & can't keep a straight face while saying his name. It's beyond adorable.
  11. Nana - Bananas are her current favorite fruit.
  12. Please - she only knows the sign for this - can't say it yet.
  13. Thank you - again she only does the sign for this but she does know what she's saying so I count it!
  14. Bu - Book. Another favorite of Hadley's
  15. Ba - Bus. Elliot has an obsession with school buses so Hadley & I hear about the 'cool bus' ALL day long.
  16. Boom - pretty self explanatory
I'm sure there are some I'm missing but I'll have to come back and update later if I think of them. Her comprehension of what we say is what amazes me most. She's almost got the sign for drink down. When asked what a dog says Hadley pants - like her brother. It's pretty funny. She'll also blow kisses when asked to say 'I love you!' She loves to wave 'hi' and 'bye'. Watching her dance is also a fun past time.

Thank you for allowing me to brag on my baby girl :) She is such a happy little thing & never ceases to bring a smile to my face!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

2011 - Really?!?!

I'm having a hard time wrapping my mind around the fact that it's already 2011. To be honest I'm having a hard time wrapping my mind around a lot of things lately. Petey and I were talking about this earlier and all the changes this year will bring to our family and our lives. By the end of this year we'll have 4 kids and will have been married 4 years. We'll be 26. We'll have been homeowners for a year. He'll have worked full time for over a year. There were several other things we discussed but those were the highlights.

I also keep telling myself that one of these years we'll have a 'quiet' one. Since we've been married there's always been something BIG - usually several somethings - going on during any given year. While this past year we didn't have anymore children there were several BIG things that occurred and changed our lives.

Now that 2010 has come to a close I thought it would be fun/neat to do a top ten of 2010. Yes, a wee bit cheesy but it's also a quick way to highlight the biggest happenings for our little family in 2010.

So, in no particular order here are the first 10 things I can think of from our past year:

  1. New Year's Day 2010 - Seventeen of us boarded a plane in San Francisco and headed back to the Midwest after a fun filled week in the San Francisco Bay Area. We proved it really is possible to spend at least a week together with 22 other family members in one house. There were a few tense moments but fortunately we're all able to chuckle about those now.
  2. In March Petey and I headed to Dubuque to look for a home. He had accepted a full time position with LabStrong not long before this. It wasn't the way most people plan to spend Spring Break but it was a good time. My parents watched the little people for us - it was the first time I'd left Hadley overnight and while it was super hard we enjoyed our alone time and it was much easier to house shop without dragging the kids with us. We had a fantastic realtor who really got what we wanted out of a house & was very helpful. She found us a house that hadn't even been listed yet & 10 minutes after our first viewing we had a verbal agreement with the owners. It was a win-win for both of us! Now, we love our house very much and it's hard for us to imagine anywhere better for our little (but expanding) family to be!
  3. May brought graduation time. We both had cousins graduate from high school. We weren't able to make it to Dana's party but since we were in Ames at the time we were able to stop at Nicole's party. Petey and my cousin Jess both graduated Summa Cum Laude from Iowa State. Watching my husband walk across that stage and shake the President Geoffrey's hand was a very proud moment indeed! We celebrated with a family party afterward at a local hotel. The younger kids went swimming and the rest of us commandeered a sitting/eating area where we ate and chatted for quite awhile.
  4. In June our baby boy turned TWO! We celebrated with a Cars themed birthday party at our house. It was a really nice day so we were able to spend time outside. It was also the first chance a lot of people had to check out our new house.
  5. At the end of June/beginning of July we were able to spend even more time with family. Petey's brother Dan stayed with us for a few days while he was visiting from California. He put his carpentry skills to good use and helped Petey get the kids new playset built. He finished it up on the second day & it's been a huge hit! My aunt and uncle, Carl & Priya, and their kids were also here from California around the same time. We were able to spend a few days at my grandparent's with them. My grandparents also celebrated their 75th birthdays and 55th wedding anniversary! We had everyone at our house for a day so we headed off to Dubuque to check out the National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium.
  6. At the end of July we had a birthday party for Elliot and 5 of his little friends. It was a crazy awesome day and fortunately the weather cooperated with us and the kids were able to play outside for quite awhile. Their moms are all ladies I met when pregnant with Elliot. We frequented a message board and at the time I thought it was just a nice resource to hear from other moms. It's turned into so much more than that though and I count several of these women as my closest friends now. The daddies took over during naptime so we had some mommy time to actually sit and talk. That, my friends, was the best treat of the whole day I think!
  7. Just a couple days after our birthday bash my dad, the kids and I loaded up the van and headed to Ohio. My dad was along for moral support and to help me out with the kids since it was a roughly 10 hour drive. I was able to spend 3 days with even more of my mommy friends from the same message board mentioned above. Prior to this I hadn't met any of them in person but I can honestly say it was not the least bit awkward. There were a total of 15 of us mommies there throughout the stay but only 13 were there on any given night. It was a madhouse with all those toddlers and several older siblings but I'm so glad I made the trek and I'm very, very sad I'll miss out on these meetings this year.
  8. In September we checked out the Spencer Fair. It's been a long time since either of us had been there and it was a first for our kids. Mum-Mum & Papa decided to join us as well. We met my friend Amy & her little girl Lauren (Elliot's girlfriend - no joke) and had a blast! We had some awesome fair food, let the kids climb and play on tractors and they got to see and pet animals. The highlight of the day for Elliot was the midway. He went on rides for the first time and had a BLAST! I was a little leery at first since I wasn't sure he would go on his own and I was even less certain he'd sit during the rides but he LOVED it and we ended up buying more tickets for him. It was so much fun to watch him enjoying those rides.
  9. In October Hadley turned ONE! My baby girl, my precious is no longer a baby. That has been hard for me to accept. She is such a joy to have around though and I know that sounds a bit cliche but it's so true. She's got a smile that seriously brightens any day and any room. She has a huge personality and always wants HER way. She's a big mommy's girl but loves her Daddy and especially loves her Papa. She adores her Uncle Dan and just in the last week or so has started to really say his name. She can't help but break out in a huge smile every time she says it. While we didn't plan on getting pregnant with her when we did I'm so glad God blessed us with her. He really does know what he's doing and I can't imagine not having her around and I love the age difference between her and Elliot.
  10. As most of you know we're expecting again. While it wasn't a huge shock to learn that in itself it was a lot more shocking to learn on December 3 that we were expecting TWINS. We've since learned they're identical twins & while I have a good hunch of the sex of the babies we don't know for certain what they are. I'm hopeful we'll find out for sure later this month. It still hasn't completely sunk in for me yet that we really are going to be having two more babies. I'm not sure when it will sink in but hopefully before it's actually time to bring them home!
So, the top ten things of 2010. I ran out of room to mention all the time we were able to spend with family over the holidays & while we missed several people we did enjoy the time we had. I'm sure I've missed other happenings from this year but this is a decent re-cap I think.

We're looking forward to what 2011 has in store for us and while it won't be a 'quiet' year by any means it will be an exciting one and one that we feel very blessed to experience!