In the meantime….

Category : Blogger Posts : 2007-2010

While I whip up a new post, here are some pictures for you to enjoy of the girly girls this fall. Check out the side bar for new videos!

This fall!

Love to you all!

Gary, Christie, Anna and Izzy

She’s 2: Two under 3 begins!

Category : Blogger Posts : 2007-2010

Get all the latest photos here!

Fall is in full swing here in West Michigan. Where did the summer go or even fall for that matter? It’s gotten down into the 20’s some nights with a fresh layer of frost greeting us the next morning. Needless to say, the orange impatiens I left out front have gone to mush and my tomato plant couldn’t take the cold anymore.

We visited the local farm a couple weekends ago to gather the harvest of fresh hot spiced donuts, cold apple cider and our hoard of pumpkins. Earlier in the day, it was beautiful and sunny, somewhat “warm”. I dressed Anna in a long sleeved shirt and hooded sweatshirt and soon found out that wasn’t the best idea. Soon followed the runny nose and red cheeks, oh yeah, blue lips. I felt like I won the “worst mom of the year” award at that moment. But the trooper that she is, kept plugging away at the coloring pages, hay piles, barrel rides and the “spitty rain” wagon ride to the pumpkin patch. I guess to compensate for my failure in Anna’s attire, Izzy sat snuggly in her car seat, warm clothes, sweater and her blankie piled high. We did have an enjoyable time when we were there, just wished we waited a week. :)

This past weekend we celebrated Anna’s 2nd birthday! We had a fun little party with family and close friends. Anna was greeted from her nap with 25 people looking at her, so she was a bit shy at first. But soon she saw her loot and was quite happy in helping daddy pick out which one to open next. She made out with a ton of new winter clothes (thank you family!), lots of art supplies/crafty projects and lots of Cars stuff (favorite movie these days). I, as usual, wanted to try something new and a little time consuming for the birthday treat. Enter cake pops!

They took a while to get the hang of but boy were they good and big hit! We had a lot of fun seeing family and friends again and glad they could be a part of Anna’s big day.

Miss Isabella is certainly holding her own and making sure she’s a part of everything Anna does. She crawls with great speed, pulls herself up on anything (picture getting ready for work and the wee little one holding on to your leg to stand) and certainly loves being in the daddy/Anna wrestling action.

Here’s a story of the week. Place: Main floor of our house. Time: After dinner, daddy’s gone. Izzy: In the kitchen with me, unloading the dishwasher. Anna: Living room wanting to sit by the table and color. Me: Hears Anna’s cries for help (yes, everything to her is dramatic) to sit in her rocking chair by the table with her paper and box of crayons. I go to help her get situated and leave Izzy in the kitchen. This is what I see when I return to the kitchen:

So that’s a good visual of Izzy’s personality thus far. What a stinker!

For the last few weeks, I’ve been going to a Kickfit (think Tae Bo but with a bunch of skinny college girls) on Wednesday nights and it’s been awesome! I’ve been so inspired that I’ve been trying to do one work out at home with Gary! It was fun the one time we did it and hope to make more of a habit doing it. Hehe. :) I was on Weight Watchers for a year and a half before I got pregnant for Anna and lost about 45 pounds. I’ve been able to maintain that and a little more through both girls and now that we have the pregnancy thing under control, I’m trying to get back to working out more. It’s hard doing it on your own so I’m glad I have Gary on board somewhat and my friend and I are doing the class together – one step closer! :)

Our jobs have been crazy busy in the last few weeks – job security! Close to wrapping up some side work – yes, this is really going to happen this time! Yay! Doors and trim, here we come. But over all, we’re doing well. No one has been too sick as of yet, we get to wear sweaters (!) and we’re moving in to the holiday season (I still would like to know what happened to summer). We can’t complain a whole lot – no one would listen anyway. :)

Here’s to a wonderful but rainy and cold weekend!
Love to you all,

Gary, Christie, Little One and Wee Little One

Where have we been?!

Category : Blogger Posts : 2007-2010

I can’t believe it’s been almost a month since I touched this blog. So sorry followers! We are still alive and kicking, I promise! Here’s pictures of late summer fun!

The month of September has come and gone. The Lord gave us a little summer after school was back in session and now we’re seeing the leave start changing beautiful shades of yellow, orange and red. The air has a little bit of humidity and little bit of a nip to it. The honeycrisp apples are eaten like candy and the canning of peaches already took place. The making of plans for a trip to the orchard and preparing for Anna’s 2nd birthday party are underway. This year has flown by and probably won’t stop there.

Nothing terribly exciting going on in the Tidd house. Izzy started full fledged crawling and is everywhere now. We started giving her some table food along with her baby food and is handling it really well (no gagging episodes as we experienced with Anna way too many times). She says “mamamama”, “babababa” and “dadadada”, but not really putting them with what they are yet. She’s taking a lot of mental notes while watching big sister run around the house and gearing up to take over eventually. She continues to be our little cuddle bug as this week she got the flu and stayed home with mom and/or dad for a few days. She enjoyed napping on us and maybe got too used to it as naptime in her own room was a struggle from time to time. She loves being kissed on her cheeks and just melts right into you. Her hair is getting longer and she looks like such a little person now. 8 months old already! Crazy how big she is now – about 16.5 pounds (with wet diaper). Still a peanut by many other baby standards but smart as a whip. :)

Miss Anna still tries to rule the roost with her pleas of “ouchy” even when the said “ouchy” is a week old or barely there or her need to watch “Cars” everyday. It’s gotten to the point where Gary and I analyze the movie, like what’s the names of the sports cars or was the way McQueen headed back to find Mac actually the right way? Oh my. Well we had such a positive first week of potty training and it ended another week later with Gary and I barely thinking or talking about anything else other than what we were doing wrong that she stopped telling us and just going in her pants or when she was going to pee next. It was the most frustrating things we’ve gone through as parents (I’d take a screaming infant over PT anyday)! So we asked her if she wanted to go back into diapers and she let a clear “yes”. We felt defeated and like failures for awhile. At first she wasn’t sure about the diaper again but she soon was fine with it once again. Then she started saying potty again and she’d go! Then we went to not telling us or saying dry when we knew she was pushing. And now we’re slowly getting back to her staying potty to us and she’s associating going potty with a cookie now, so at least she’s starting to get it and doing it! She’s also starting to talk is almost sentences, associating what is hers and other people things, being more specific like we have a van and a car, instead of just car or mommy’s or daddy’s. She sings her ABC’s almost fully and such a joy to hear her little voice sing it (note to self, video that!). She likes mommy to sing all the Bible songs in her little lullaby book along with the never ending song of “The Wheels on the Bus”. She’s starting to say names very clearly, her “s” are very clear and she just started putting the “n” on the end of things that were once a little airy.

The two of them together is only something sisters know. They both get excited when they see each other in the morning. Anna shares her blanket with Izzy from time to time. She wants to help feed and burp her on occasion, too. Izzy follows Anna’s every move from stair climbing to hoisting herself up on near her chair. I can only imagine the bond they will create with eachother as the years go on.

We are doing well in our own right. Certainly we are busy with dinner plans, running errands, housework and of course, keeping up with the girly girls, but we are happy, healthy, fed, clothed and warm. What more could you ask for? These girls teach us to slow down sometimes and just cuddle, to involve them in bigger things, to take in their soft baby skin and their little hands and feet, to be better parents, to be a better couple and to love more than you know you can love. It’s certainly amazing what happens each day in our family when you look at it, we just have to slow down or stop and take it in because before we know it, they’ll be flitting off to college.

I’ll post more of what’s going on with us soon, but since it’s been a month I figured an Anna and Izzy update was the most important. :)

7 Years

Category : Blogger Posts : 2007-2010

Crazy how long 7 years goes by and yet the thoughts and memories seem like just last week. Crazy how much one can grow, physically, mentally, spiritually in just 7 years. Where once we were young adults or just a teenager trying to make sense of it all to being home owners, parents, college grads and newlyweds.

7 years ago this morning, I got that awaited phone call from dad telling me the Lord took her home that morning. It was about 3 weeks that I knew that phone call would come, but knowing didn’t ease the heartache that would follow that day. That now her body would be lowered and her spirit would soar. Not for us to see anymore, but only relive in our memory, in pictures, in stories, in beautiful quilts.

Those feelings I felt that day only sneak in when I least expect it now. Only a handful of times. God has never left our side, from the day we found out it was leukemia to this very day, he has sustained us through the hard times and has given us hope, strength and love despite it all. Hope knowing that we’ll all be where she has been celebrating for 7 years and knowing love can be found through brokenness. Strength when thoughts of childbirth and pregnancy are scary because you feel alone or when you wonder how he feels in those moments he feels a need to talk to her. Love in knowing you were loved by her, with all her being, knowing we are still loved, love that’s shared and passed down.

Thank you for giving all of us that, mom. Someday, we’ll tell you all about it. But for now, know that we’re doing awesome.

Love and miss you.

Potty Training Success!

Category : Blogger Posts : 2007-2010

So I am making and breaking records this year with my blog posting. I typically only post when major events happen in my / our lives. This being my 3rd post of the year means that we have now had 3 major events in our lives to date.

1. Isabella born 1-13-09
2. Frank Hall passes 4-19-09
3. Anna becomes free from the bonds of the diaper! 8-23-09

Yup that’s right Anna is no longer bound by diaper, she is officially a big girl who uses the potty! Christie and I spent the last 3 days in an intensive effort to potty train 22 month old Anna.

A few months back Christie came across a link to an online book titles 3 Day Potty Training. We began to do research at that point to see if the product was what it said it was. We found that the system while similar to some popular methods advertized for free, it had some aspects to it that made Christie and I believe it was worth the money.

After spending 3 days using the method I can assure you that it is worth every cent. My sister who has her bachelor’s in early childhood development read the book (we were allowed to send her a copy of the PDF because she closely assisted us with training Anna today). Her take on the method was that it made a lot of sense and it did not surprise her that the system worked as advertised.

The basic gist of the method is to switch to big girl panties / big boy underwear and never turn back. The system teaches you how to turn accidents into positive learning experiences. By the end of the book the author has taught you how to potty train your toddler by being patient, consistent, loving and wholly devoted to just that task for 3 days.

Saturday morning we got up and changed Anna’s diaper (giving her the last clean diaper she would ever have.). We then got ready for the day, took showers – ate breakfast and began the day late but totally relaxed and ready for the task.

At around 10:00 A.M. or so we got down on Anna’s level, looked her in the ye and told her, “you are going to wear big girl panties now and go potty on the toilet! Anna, you are such a big girl now!”. From there we took off her diaper, put her in panties and never looked back.

We began pumping her with liquids (ok – not pumping, but we had a sippy cup ready and waiting at all times – the more liquid going in – the more opportunities to sit on the potty!). We also began asking her to remember to tell us if she needed to go to the potty, we did so a million times over, to the point where she began to ignore us, but that was the point. We wanted this to be so ingrained in her head that telling us became habit. We also kept asking her if she was dry, each time she answered us we would praise her for being a big girl.

It was not perfect form the start but we had no illusion that it would be. We expected and wanted there to be accidents. The accidents were not a bad thing but a chance to teach Anna how to respond to what her little body was telling her. By 11:30 A.M. we had gone through about 8 pairs of panties, one of daddy’s shirts and mommy’s ankle (Christie rolled her ankle sweeping Anna off to the potty one time – she is fine but it hurt for a while).

Slowly but surely we began to have some success, times where we caught Anna in the act of starting to pee, swept her off to the potty, got down on her level and lovingly teased her about how she made yuck in her panties and how we wanted to do that in the toilet. The more we did this the more Anna began to connect the dots and realize that she needed to let us know when she had to go. Of course there was a reward of 2 M7M’s for going Number 1 in the toilet and 4 M&M’s for going Number 2 in the toilet.

By the end of day 1 we had gone down for a nap and woke up dry, made it into the potty quite a few times and made it in the potty just before bed. This was quite a successful day if you ask me.

Day 2 began with a wet bed in the morning; we did not make it through the night. This was to be expected and we treated this the same as we did with wet panties and it went over just as well. Anna has some resistance to the potty first thing in the morning. We knew not to push her but she began to pee on the potty while sitting on it and crying, when she got the loads of praise everything changed. It was like she remembered form yesterday that going on the potty was a good thing to be rewarded for and from that point we never looked back.

For all of day 2 we went through a total of 5 or 6 pairs of panties, compared to the 15 or so on day 1. She never really verbally let us know she had to go to the potty until the end of day 2, but the body signals were there. I think this success was a combination of Anna connecting the dots and Christie and I being calm and consistent with our methodology. Basically Anna started to learn what to expect and what was expected of her and we began to learn how to read Anna better.

SUCCESS!!! Day 2 ended with Anna verbally telling us she needed to go to the potty and going both Number 1 and Number 2!!! This was a huge milestone for Anna and for us too! We were so proud of her that we made speaker phone calls to all grandparents to be sure they knew how big of a girl Anna was!

Day 3 (Today) was just more of the same success. She began the day with a clean bed in the morning (she got up once in the middle of the night and told us she needed to go to the potty and we got her to the potty first thing in the morning when we got up – she went both times!). Anna came into her own, letting us know when she needed to go to the potty. He continued to go Number 1 a lot and she had another Number 2 – continued Number 2 success if a very encouraging thing for mommy and daddy! We went through 2 pairs of panties today, but neither of them were Anna’s fault, she let us know, we just did not get her there in time.

Day 3 ended with a trip to the restaurant for a dinner out; after 3 days cooped up in the house focusing on potty training we all needed to get out! This was a success once again; she went to the potty 3 different times while we were there! His was just another sign to us that she gets it now and the method worked as it had said it would.

That brings us to now, Anna sleeping soundly in her bed, in big girl panties, another milestone reached! Tomorrow Christie and I head back to work and Aunt Sheila begins her normal schedule with Anna. I am sure some minor setbacks are in order, but again we expect it and are prepared to deal with them.

To anyone who has a toddler to potty train, I cannot say enough how awesome of a method this is! You can get the book at http://www.3daypottytraining.com

Another more standard update form Christie will come again soon!

Love Gary, Christie Anna & Izzy

7th Month: Two under 2

Category : Blogger Posts : 2007-2010

Well I’ve tried to type a post out a few times already but I was having a writers block, not that I’m truely a writer but nothing was flowing the way I wanted it to. So here I am for another try. :)

Izzy: This little girl has gotten to be so big in the last month! Just over two weeks ago she started to climb; on us, up onto furniture, onto toys that weren’t so stable. That was quite a feet for her and she was so proud of herself! So two weeks ago today (6th) I came home and thought, ya know she’s been pulling herself up on things, she’s been army crawling for quite some time, lets see if she can sit up on her own. Sure enough, I sat her down and she wobbled a smidge, but she stayed up for a while on her own! I was so excited (and Gary wasn’t home!) that she could do this, I told Anna to sit next to her while I got the camera. There Izzy sat all very proud, Anna sitting so very nicely and seemly proud of her sister and I got their first picture not sitting on the couch, not on anyone’s lap, but next to each other as sisters. Say it with me, aww…..!

Since then, she’s been climbing up onto chairs, our legs, doors, the door of the fridge, her sister and everything she does. So Anna’s pay back is shortly coming. She’s starting to actually crawl – Gary noticed last night that she was doing it more consistantly. I’ll let you know when we’re full fledged crawling! Shes almost 16 pounds as of her 6 month appointment, 26″ or so long and her head in the 90% percentile (the rest under 40%). So really, we produce giant headed kids. :) She was amazing with her shots, more of a trooper than Anna was and that’s saying something! She’s onto the 2nd foods and we’ve been giving her soft thing to try. She loved stuffing, not so much the puffs. Hopefully she’s not too picky! She’s really evened her temperment out since her first few months of life. She’s very happy, has a smile for everyone, sleeps through the night (except when the pipe goes missing) and just loves being around everyone (she doesn’t get as mad if you leave her in another room b/c she can come find you now). She’s definitely our cuddle baby and we don’t mind one bit. :) Her first words would be “mama” and now we have added “baba” and “gaga” to the vocabulary. She seems to be our go to bed early, get up early girl. Hopefully she’ll rub off on the rest of us! She’s just an absolute joy to have in our family.

Anna: Not only is Izzy getting bigger, but this little one is gaining a vocabulary at great speeds! She definitely tries most words (when she’s in the mood) that we ask her to say or as a greeting (like “see you in the morning” is “morning” or “have a good day” is “day” said in the cutest sing songy way). She sings the alphabet song, well some of it, but she knows the tune. She still just as passionate of reading books and doing puzzles as she’s been so much so I get new books and puzzles from the library to switch it up along with Aunt Sheila making her a bunch of match games. She loves being outside and likes to take peoples fingers, pull them to her door and says “shoes on” or “Anna’s shoes” and “side” to take her out. She’s still an avid rock collector as we find stashes in buckets to strollers. She’s cut all but one eye tooth and her 2 year molars. I think the 2 year molars are right around the corner b/c we’ve had some cranky days and lots of biting on fingers and other things.

The biggest news for Anna (and she doesn’t so much know it yet) is that we’re potty training her this weekend. We found a 3 day potty training system online that has proven successful for many parents, even with kids that have autism have been taught using her system. Now some people may not agree with it or don’t think it’s necessary to buy this PDF booklet, that’s completely fine. To each their own, we’ve just found things we’ve read and tried to be very successful with both our girls and Anna is hitting all the cues of being ready. So we’re taking Saturday, Sunday and Monday as days to focus on her. The process is all very positive it just involves seeing those cues and staying attentive. So we’ll report back and hopefully next week she’ll be in these itty bitty Elmo panties and diaper free!

For about 3 weeks now and for another 2, Aunt Sheeya has been watching the girls and have been having an awesome time! Full of art projects, playing outside, learning and just having a great time! We wish she could always watch the girls, but they’ll be heading back to their daycare after school starts up again. Thank you Aunt Sheeya!

Gary and Christie: We’ve done a lot lately, some physically, some financially, some mentally. We’ve really cleaned out our garage with all the basement stuff (throwing out, 2nd handing them, and putting it back downstairs), painted our “new” 2 drawer filing cabinet a beautiful shade of green apple to match the color scheme (first pattern of navy blue, two shades of turquoise and green) we decided on. We’re hoping within the next week to reclaim the garage back and then start tackling the basement!

We’ve also started doing Dave Ramsey’s zero based budget where all of our income is accounted for. We’ve been doing Dave’s “envelope” system for a long time on our bank’s website by taking a quarter of the amount for each constant bill and putting in their own account so when the bill comes we don’t have to scramble. There are exceptions like gas and electric, but the over/under amount we have in each of those seems to level it out throughout the year. This has helped us tremendously. But we found we made a lot more that we could be saving and didn’t really know where it was going. So we started to account for everything like our 3+ month emergency fund, clothes, expected gifts, household items (lightbulbs, a new pillow), etc. If we don’t enough in the clothes fund, we wait to buy those items till we have enough. If we don’t have enough in groceries, we cut back on buying that pack of steaks till next week. Things like that. So we’re saving a little right now, but we’re not having to dip into our money market to buy things. Along with all that, we’re snowballing all our bills like school loans, car payment and then our mortgage. I’m already over a year ahead in payments on Gary’s small school loan, so when that get’s paid off, that payment (which already had my small loans weekly amount added in) will go towards the next biggest loan. So we’re hoping by the time the girls are in middle school, we’ll have everything along with the house paid off (with our current income that is)! We’re quite excited. It’s these types of things Gary and I will be writing about on our joint blog.

Mentally we’re trying to figure out how to simplify our life in terms of living, things in our house, our goals, where we want our side work to get, etc. It’s not always very clear cut but each day we talk about these things and see where we can head together, as a couple and as a family. It’s so exciting and know God has given us the tools to get to where we’re at and will continue to do so.

Pretty heavy stuff, but we’re up for the challenge! More pictures and videos to come this weekend (I hope)! :) Here are the picture links from the last post: The Girls and Beaver Island.

Love to you all,
Gary, Christie, George and Bob

Mid-Summer Fun!

Category : Blogger Posts : 2007-2010

I haven’t had a chance to write a blog (been busy and the internet keeps going down on us at home). But here are some pictures for you to enjoy!

Mid summer fun – A:21/I:6

Beaver Island 2009


Changes are a-comin’! Month 6: Two under 2

Category : Blogger Posts : 2007-2010

Well I had most of a post typed out last week and somehow it didn’t save any of it. Bummer. So here we start again. Changes, I say. Are we pregnant again for the 3rd summer in a row?! Heck no. Hehe. Are we moving? Nope and I really don’t want to for a long time. Did either of us lose our jobs? Nope, thankfully we’re holding our own. It’s not that dramatic I suppose, but in the nearer than farther future, we’re going to be switching blog locations to a place that may host images and videos a lot easier than this one. It’ll be an easy name change, so no worries to my followers. Gary and I are also going to start our own blog featuring things from finances to parenting to product reviews. Pretty much all things that encompass our daily lives. We have a lot of ideas and things that we truely believe in, so what better way than empty our brains than into a blog! I know, it’s another thing to add to our never ending lists of projects but we’re shifting gears and finalizing other projects in the near future, so stay tuned for that possibly starting up in the fall.

More summer pictures of the girls!

The girly girls are doing well. Miss Izzy is a droolin’ machine, saturating a couple bibs a day. She’s well on her way to her first tooth. I don’t see any yet, but they are workin’ their way up! She began her crawling just over 2 weeks ago and today, she’s army crawling like a mad fool and getting up on all 4’s with the cute little rock babies do – working her way over to wherever Anna is and wanting to eat whatever toy she’s playing with. I can imagine those 2 in 2 years whispering secrets and running up and down the stairs, giggling the whole way. Can’t wait! We began more solid food this weekend for the Izmeister – squash to start and on to peas! We got a screwed up face the first bite, but after that, loved it! After we get through all the veggies, we’ll start fruit. I’m sure she’ll love it just as much as Anna does. She’s been sleeping good at night but usually cat naps during the day, so that’s alright – she doesn’t like to miss anything! She’s still our little cuddlebug – her morning naps on Sunday are in the arms of mommy or someone else. Love it.

Ms. Anna has an ever expanding vocabulary which now entails parts of the alphabet (jklm), parts of 1-10, calling her clothes “cute”, knowing what belongs to her, mommy, daddy and Izzy by pointing at a vehicle (which the van is Anna’s), “glasses”, “anana” for banana, “flower” and the other day I heard her say one of her friends names Owen, she goes “Ooooowwwwwwehh”, so cute! Her poor little mouth is going through a growth spurt again of her 4 eye teeth. We had a few days of Tylenol and hearing “piiiiieee” (which is pipe) for comfort. But one has broken through so hopefully it’ll be a little easier on her. She still loves to read her books (especially on the potty and the potty book at that!), her new thing are these 2 little babies that you can put hats and clip on clothing along with feeding them a “ba-ul” (bottle) and putting them to bed. She has 2 and usually shares one with Izzy, so she can eat it of course. She’s a great, big sister and loves to make sure Izzy has the same thing she does, like a blankie or book or baby. She loves it when Izzy bats at her face or eats her nose. You can see the bond they are making already.

Mom and dad are doing well. We’ve hit the beach a couple times now (when summer decided to show up), had a picnic in the park, finishing up some freelance projects and in the midst (still) of putting our basement back together. We’re enjoying watching the girls play and grow each day, trying to remember all those little things they do now and will slowly fade away as time goes on, making our marriage even stronger, our financial situation that much better and encouraging each other to be better parents – can’t get much better than that! We’re headed up to Beaver Island in a couple weeks and we’re so excited for this mini-vacation. A long weekend of relaxing (or me finding little projects to work on), swimming and enjoying the beautiful views.

A few updates of the basement

Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

Gary, Christie, Anna and Izzy

Summer pics!

Category : Blogger Posts : 2007-2010

Summer is finally here! Here are some pics to enjoy of the girly girls!

It was the summer of….. 2009!


Fifth Month : Two under 2

Category : Blogger Posts : 2007-2010

First off, I’ll post pictures soon, I promise! Maybe tonight. :)

We’re in the 5th month of two under 2. Crazy, that Izzy’s almost been here for half a year already! We couldn’t imagine our family without her anymore. She’s scooting, yes scooting, across the floor using her little feet to push her to where she wants to be and she’s ony 5 months old! She sometimes gets the hands to work with her feet, but they usually work independently right now. She smiles at you from across the room, dimples and all. She’s been on oatmeal for just over a month now and is slowly figuring out how to use her tongue to eat. In a few weeks we’ll start introducing veggies – we’ll see if she takes to them as well as Anna did. We also did the “cry it out method” about a month ago and it only took a few nights and she’s been sleeping through the night ever since! Lovely for mom and dad, for sure. She flails her limbs when she gets excited, loves Grandma Tiemens hair as she giggles from her toes, she rolls all over the place and loves to find all of Anna’s puzzle pieces to chew on. Teething for sure. She squeals when she gets to play with Anna (or rolls near her) and just follows her every move. I think Izzy is going to do things even earlier than what Anna did. She’s very passionate about her bottle as even when we carry her up the stairs with her bottle in our hand, she grabs it and pulls to to her mouth ready to eat. If she even sees a bottle, she stares at it as if where going to float over to her. So cute. She’s certainly a happy baby.

Anna is amazing us each day too. She studies every move we make, like how something opens, what button to push, how to use a napkin or how we say a word. It’s like every moment she has, she wants to learn. She say’s her ABC’s really well, is starting to put 2 words together and has lessoned her “no” and timeouts lately. I’m sure that’ll go in waves. She loves taking our finger and walk us over or pull us down or tells us to sit where she wants us. It’s so cool that she’s starting to really communicate with us and she’s remember things we did a few days back. Like last night, she pulled me over to the stairs and patted the step for me to sit down. She brought over a catepillar car. Then I remembered we did that the other night where I rolled it into the kitchen and she’d bring it back to me. Smart girl. Or she’s grab our finger only to walk a couple steps and then pull for us to sit down by a puzzle to do with her. Then last night was great! Gary brought out her beanbag chair and she flopped down in it. He picked her and the chair up to drop it back on the floor and she’d giggle. Then she’d said “again”! Hehe, that was awesome. She’s having the typical toddler issues with dinner by not always eating something she’s like a week ago, so we’ve been telling her that that’s the only food she’ll get tonight. She doesn’t seem to mind, but we give her a snack a little later and tell her she got on b/c she ate dinner good. So far dad’s a lot better at dealing with that than I am. :) I have guilty mom syndrome. She loves being outside, sometimes bringing us her shoes and saying “side” as she walks to the door.

We’re trying to enjoy outside when it’s not over 90! The sprinklers have been turned on a few times – Anna likes it half the time. Weird. We planted a small veggie/herb garden to see what happens. So far the tomato plant is huge but some of the others have had their leaves eaten. Most of my flowers are planted – still trying to find the time to spray paint my pots again to get the remainder on display. A few new bushes and perennials have been added this year. In the fall, some dividing and transplanting will be in order. We’re looking to get some rock for the sides of the house (since the house didn’t come with gutters!) yet this summer. We’re hoping to finishing painting the basement this weekend (guest room: fresh day, living room: starless night and pure white) so we can start moving stuff back down there… oh, and we can’t forget the 52″ tv that has to go on the wall. :) We’ll just have some little projects to finish up this summer, the rest can wait till fall/winter (can’t believe I just said that). In the meantime, we’re going to try to get the beach and the lake whenever we can. At the end of July, we’re heading up to Beaver Island for what seems may become a yearly event. Fine by me! It’s awesome up there.

We’re all healthy, cool and thankful for our jobs and life. It’s busy at times (well most of the time) but we wouldn’t want it any other way! Here’s to a wonderful summery weekend!


Gary, Christie, Anna and the Izmeister