Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Mama's Magic

Both girls are miserable,
both have bad colds.
When all they want is th
eir Mama to hold.

So what can Mama do
to turn frowns
upside down?

Well, a picnic of course!

Complete with the picnic basket we received as a wedding present that we have never used!

Our menu:

Analese: peabutter on rice cake
whole apple, peeled
flourless peanut-butter cookie

Mara: chicken
apple slices
snickerdoodle cookie

Mama: chicken salad on a bed of lettuce
flourless peanut-butter cookie

It was successful! Frowns turned upside down,
if only for a moment.
We clicked our plastic glasses and had lots of cheers.
Lots of giggles, and lots of spills

A very dreary day turned out great (for a little while)

Monday, January 28, 2008

The Long Weekend

Thanks for all the well-wishes and hopes for a virus :)

We are still not sure what is up with our child. She spent Friday laying on the couch, feeling pretty miserable. On Saturday she woke up feeling a bit better, still tired and irritable, but up off the couch and moving around. We still wanted her to rest and drink up, as she was probably still a bit dehydrated, so Greg took her to the movie store to pick out some videos to watch.

Anyway, she seemed on the mend Saturday, even asking for and eating up a tuna fish sandwich for lunch, but then not wanting to eat more then her salad for dinner. We didn't push it too much.

Then came Saturday night. It started off a good night, as the girls were both in bed by 8 o'clock-a rare occurrence these days, and I was able to study AND then watch a movie with Greg. Throughout the movie, Analese woke up a few times crying but we were able to get her back to sleep right away. After we went to bed, she continued to keep waking up. She was pretty disoriented every time I went in there, thrashing around and crying. Once I was able to calm her down, she went right back to sleep. This pattern continued throughout the night, and I had counted 8 times of me having to get up. I woke Greg up to go in there once, but he is such a hard sleeper...much faster for me to just go!

Around 4 am the fun began, as Analese began to once again vomit all over her bed. Mara was in our bed by this time, so Greg stayed and helped her back to sleep. I got Analese cleaned up, the bed cleaned up with new sheets and blankets. Analese was really tired and just wanted the light off so that she could go back to sleep. I got her back into bed, and went downstairs to rinse the sheets and get them in the wash. As soon as I got back upstairs and just two feet away from my bed, I heard her throwing up again! Once again, we got everything cleaned up and I took her out to the couch with me. I set the sofa up with towels everywhere, put a bowl next to Analese and we watched some television until 6 am when she was tired enough to go back to sleep. She was really thirsty, but I waited until 7:30 to give her a sip of water. She seemed to do OK with it, so I continued to give her a sip every 15 minutes. But an hour later she threw it all up again.

Anyway, she spent yesterday on the couch once again, very lethargic. She did not vomit anymore, and we continued to get fluids in her. We do wonder whether it really is a virus or her head, as she was pretty disoriented and confused, and very sensitive to light...becoming really upset when the blind was pushed open a bit. I know having a "headache" is a hard concept for a child to understand, so we have been asking her if her eyes hurt, if it hurts to move her head, etc. but couldn't really get a real answer.

So we'll see how today goes! She is still pretty tired, but did eat some of her muffin this morning. I think the only way we'll really know if this is a virus is if one of us also gets it. Not really sure if I want that to happen.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Quick Update

Sorry its taken me so long to update you all. My computer has been acting up today-of course!

Greg was at the hospital with Analese until 4 this morning, and she continued to vomit until about 7. We got to sleep from 5-7 and then Ms. Mara was up for the day. The hospital said she either has a concussion or a stomach virus...we're all hoping for the virus. There seems to be a nasty one going around, so hopefully that is it (but one the rest of us do not get!)

Analese is pretty lethargic, not eating and I have been getting her to take sips of water every 15 minutes. Hopefully she'll start to feel better soon, and hopefully we'll get some sleep tonight!

Got to go, but wanted to give a quick update!

Oh what a night....

I am sitting here waiting to here from Greg. He took Analese to the hospital to have her checked out. She began vomiting a little while ago and has thrown up 7 times in an hour. Because of her head injury earlier today, we are a bit concerned!

I hated to stay home, but we couldn't see waking up Mara so that we could all go. So my job is to continue washing all of her bed sheets, blankets and pillow in order to have to ready for her return. I feel for Greg, as I had explained in my post earlier, Analese does not handle doctors very well. Hopefully they can get in and out quickly so that we can all get some sleep tonight.

I'll keep you all posted with any updates. For now, I will be concentrating on trying to get the smell of vomit out of every room, and out of my hands. I have washed them over and over again, and I can still smell it.

My poor baby. Hopefully I'll hear something soon.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Check-ups and Boo Boos

We have had a busy week and it looks like we will not be slowing down anytime soon.

Yesterday Mara had her two year checkup yesterday. I was actually looking forward to seeing how much she weighed, as I could feel that she was getting heavier every time I held her. I was disappointed to find out that, now that she is two, they weigh her fully clothed. I asked her if we could weigh her naked in order to have a more accurate weight, but backed down once I saw 2 other families waiting to get weighed...of course I am kicking myself now and plan to call today to see if we just run in and get her reweighed. So anyway, she is now 22 pounds fully clothed, so she probably weighs about 21 pounds or so. She still isn't back on the chart, but doing well on her own chart. I was hoping she would have moved up to zero, but not just yet! She is 33 1/2 inches long, which puts her at the 25% for height.

She needed to get a shot, as we are still playing catch-up since I delayed them all. I had warned Analese beforehand and we had come up with a plan on how she could help Mara feel better by making faces. Well, our plan flew right out the window, as Analese started screaming this high pitched scream as soon as the nurse came in! It was rather comical, for Mara just sat and looked at her. She did cry when she got her shot, which caused Analese to go an octave higher-something I didn't even think was possible at the time! Mara calmed down within minutes....minutes before her big sister did. Fun, fun times :) Do you think that may have been the reason for my headache last night?

Today we had art class, and as we were getting ready to go, Analese came running down the hall and fell into the corner. It was horrible. Her face has a line down it, with bruises and scrapes on her forehead and then her cheek is bruised and swollen. Luckily, she only scraped it as I was expecting to see some big gash on her eyebrow. She still wanted to go to art class, so she iced it the whole way there. Her teacher gave me some natural remedy to put on it, which is hopefully going to help heal it up.
The girls absolutely love their class, and just work quietly the whole time. Today they used paper and glue, with all sorts of materials to use! Both girls really enjoyed using the scissors, which reminded me that we needed some at home! I have been bringing my camera to class, but never have time to pull it the class gets pretty messy.
The girls did not want to leave, and played quietly while I helped their teacher clean up. When it was time to leave, Analese hid under the table because she did not want to leave!

The art teacher is also in the midsts of planning a preschool class, which I am very interested in. She hopes to have a parent meeting next month about it-I am so excited! We keep going back and forth about what to do with Analese next year....this may be an option.

School started yesterday for me, so I have to get back into a schedule with that. I am taking my last Algebra class, and a class on Web Design. The web design class looks interesting, I cannot wait to learn new stuff.

I have my next OB appt tomorrow, so hopefully it will go well! I am attempting to bring both girls by myself, since it should be a quick appointment. Analese has such a fear of doctors, I am hoping we can get through this one with minimal tears. Wish me luck!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Birthday Weekend

Mara had quite the birthday weekend! She woke up Friday in such a mood, its almost like someone had filled her in as to what the "stereotypical two year old" should act like! Everything was "Oh, Oh, Oh!" (translation: "No!No!No!")
We still managed to have a fun day anyways :) I still had to make her cake, which had enough drama in itself. The only kind of cake/muffins that Mara has ever shown any kind of emotion towards is banana, so I found a banana pineapple cake recipe in one of my gluten-free cookbooks. It called for two flours that we did not have-potato flour and teff flour. Greg had gone to 3 different natural food stores that week and still wasn't able to get it. So I had to improvise, which I really did not want to do. Using different flours can be tricky, and the wrong choice can leave quite the aftertaste (this I know from experience). But, I chose my flours-rice, potato starch flour, tapioca, and millet and we began our cooking.

The girls had a blast! Analese spent most of the time mixing up the flours for me, as Mara just played with the leftovers from my dump bowl.

The cake looked delicious, so delicious that one of the cats ate a chunk out of it while I was putting/fighting with Mara to take a nap! I just cried, darn hormones, but soon realized that I was flipping the cake over to get it out of the pan so it didn't even matter.

Mara wanted a puppy dog cake, so that is what she got! The frosting took another search to find, but I found one that only used sugar, an egg, cream of tartar and boiling water. I added some vanilla to it for flavor, and it was pretty good!

Here is the finished cake! I used one of Mara's cookies for a nose her fruit snack for a tongue, all natural sprinkles and safe choc. chips. It's not the greatest dog cake ever, but it brought a smile to Mara's face :)

The cake was delicious too! I am so happy...getting better at this food thing!

Here are some photos of the birthday girl blowing out her candles!

Then it was present time! Mara had received a special gift from Aunt Lorrie in the mail. She LOVES the "horsies" and has slept with it every night since! Thanks again Lorrie!

The box it came in was lots of fun too!

We had gotten Mara a dollhouse for her birthday, and I was so excited to give it to her. She loves it even more then I thought she would and has played with it nonstop. The best part about is that the house comes in two pieces, so they can constantly rearrange it and can even play two separate houses. Great for two little girls!

On Sunday we had Greg's parents over for dinner and more cake. The girls had fun showing them all their toys and games. Next weekend Mara will have a birthday party with all of her cousins who also share a winter birthday. I kind of dread the thought of her getting more stuff, but I guess thats what happens when your birthday is right after Christmas :)

Friday, January 18, 2008

Happy Birthday Mara!

My baby is TWO years old today! It certainly has been one of those days, as I still have to frost Mara's cake (that the cat ate a chunk out of earlier) and fighting quite the headache after our birthday girl decided to fight hard not to take a nap (she lost).

I'll be back when I can, but here are some pics of the birthday girl! I am sure I will have birthday photos later!

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Autism Awareness

If you have a minute, please check out this video. It was done by a band called "Five for Fighting", which is donating $.49 cents to Autism Speaks each time the video is viewed. The funding goes toward research studies to help find a cure.

Be warned: I found myself crying through the whole thing! It is very powerful.

It's a very personal issue for me, as Greg's uncle, and a nephew has been diagnosed with autism. Another nephew is on the spectrum. It's very scary to me, something I think about often while pregnant.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

How to teach Respect

So I am finally getting around to posting my views on the question "Do you spare the rod when it comes to discipline?" My sister Danielle has tagged me with this question a while ago, and well, here it is-finally!

I will admit that I have begun to write this post many times. I have written it many times in my head, but I have been having problems articulating exactly how I feel on this issue. I didn't want to offend anyone, or sound too harsh. But tonight, I finally just said "to hell with it!" and will no longer worry about how it sounds......I am just going to write from my heart.

One of the most important values I wish to instill into my children is respect. Respect for us not only as their parents, but as people as well. I want them to respect each other, themselves, and to ultimately have respect for all things around them.

How do I intend to teach my children how to respect? By modeling it. We respect each other, and we give respect to them. It is really that simple. We use please and thank you just as we would like them to. We do not scream our demands, and we expect the same in return. A common phrase used often in our household is "Can you please rephrase that?" We then either help her to find better words to use, or listen to her come up with her own. This simple phrase works in our yelling, no punishments involved. Demands and disrespectful talk is ignored. We are teaching our girls that treating someone with respect will get you respect in return. Yes, we have our conflicts. We get mad, but dealing with this conflicts effectively helps show our children how to communicate their own wants. And the times we do not deal with our conflicts in a constructive manner? We apologize. To each other, in front of our girls. We are not perfect, and do not pretend to be in front of the girls.

So to answer the question, yes, we spare the rod. I have never been able to come up with a reason nor have I ever read anything that could justify inflicting pain onto your child. Some could argue that your child respects you because you spank them. I would disagree. Spanking does not teach your child respect, it teaches your child fear. Fear of you. I don't care if it's in a "controlled environment" or whether or not you clearly explain to your child your reasons for hitting them. It is bringing a certain level of fear into your household, and clearly affects the trust your child has in you. It can also break down the levels of communication within a household. I have experienced this first-hand. My parents spanked us growing up-not often, but they did. I can remember being very young and keeping things from them, even going as far as to lying if I had to....just so that no one would get in trouble. This is not the kind of relationship I wish to have with my girls.

And exactly what are you teaching your child when you spank them? Are you going to spank them for hitting? It seems kind of hypocritical to me. I will never forget an incident I had witnessed in a Target store years ago. Way before I had children. It involved a mother with her three young children. Her little girl, probably 4-5 years old, was sitting in the front of the cart, and her son, probably about 3 years old, was sitting in the back. An older child was walking with her mother. The little girl kept turning around and making faces at her brother, and the little boy kept whining to her to stop (the whining is what first drew my attention to them in the first place). The little boy then got fed up, got up on his knees and smacked the little girl in the back of the head. As the little girl began to cry, the mother grabs this little boy up and smacks his bottom a few times, saying "WHY ARE YOU HITTING YOUR SISTER?" and plops him back down into the cart. This incident has stayed with me all these years, and I found myself thinking about this over and over again as I was thinking about this post. Hmmm, I wonder why this little boy would use hitting to express his anger at his sister? Isn't that exactly what his mother is teaching him?

Personally, I feel that spanking is not an effective teaching tool. Young children are full of emotion, emotion that can be quite explosive at times. I have a child who screams, hits, cries, kicks, and throws things when she is upset and even the simplest of things (in my eyes) can set her off. Yeah, spanking her a few times could possibly reduce these outbursts, maybe even stop them all together. But again, what am I teaching her? I certainly am not teaching her how to gain control over her emotions, or how to effectively find alternative ways to communicate them. Instead, I am teaching her to suppress them, to bottle them up inside (something us Americans are really good at!) I am teaching her that all of her feelings do not matter to me, only the happy ones.

Parenting is tough, and yes, kids can really learn how to push your buttons. Children are forever testing, pushing the limits to see how far they can go. I find that this usually happens on days when I am feeling overly tired and overly stressed! I do not feel that by not spanking my children, I am spoiling them and giving them no boundaries. There are boundaries in our household. We have rules. I do believe in consequences. When I tell my children no, I do not give in. I can offer them comfort, alternative things, but I do not give in. I feel that is important at this age, even if I start to question it myself! As my girls get older, we will continue to find effective ways to keep communication open with mutual respect for each other. This will not always be easy, but I trust that we will find our way.

The Sports Mama found it depended on the individual child and the situation.

LunaNik feels that sparing the rod is bogus and spanking (within reason) is a necessary step in raising respectful children.

Peace is Every Step feels that spanking does not teach children how to be mindful of their actions and practice self control, and is disrespectful to the child.

The Daily Rhythm feels that spanking does nothing but create fear and mistrust between parent and child, and does not teach the child how to effectively deal with their emotions but only how to bottle them up inside.

This is one of those issues where there isn't really a gray usually do or you don't! It wasn't my intention to offend anyone, but that is often hard to do on such emotional subjects like this.
Now...I get to tag some people for such an interesting topic! I choose Lisa, Jen and Chris to take on this subject....I look forward to hearing what you have to say on it!

Here are the rules:

The rules:

1. Post about the topic.

2. Give me the linky love

3. Copy the last paragraph above and add your name and discipline style.

4. Post that paragraph onto your blog, including links.

5. Go to the people you have tagged and leave them a comment to know they are now, it.

6. Sit back and let the comments roll in.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Art Class

I don't know if I had mentioned this before, but Analese has been really resistant towards going to dance class. It started around the beginning of December, with lots of tears and crying about how she doesn't want to go, fighting me to get dressed, making the whole morning a nightmare. Once she got there, she was OK. No more tears, would participate for awhile and then towards the end kind of tune out because she was tired. After the morning we had, I was tired too!

So right before Christmas I let her stay home, and decided to see if the Christmas break was what she needed. Last week class was set to start again, and once again, she cried. I finally told her that this class was supposed to be fun for her, if she wasn't having fun, then we just wouldn't go anymore.

She smiled and said "Great! We are not going" and ran off to play.

I was torn as to what I should do. I felt like this was the right thing to do, I mean, why drag my child to her dance class every week? This was supposed to just be a fun class for her, since she loves to dance.

I called Greg and told him...he was surprised. At first he thought I should have forced her to go. "Then that means she won", he said.

I told him "Isn't she supposed to win? Isn't it HER dance class?" He could then see my point, and we decided to pull her out. If she wants to sign up next year, we'll try it again.

So with dance class being out, I wanted to find something that perhaps both girls could enjoy. I am happy to say I found it! It is an art class, designed for children 9 months to 4 years old. The instructor is trained in the Reggio Emilia Approach to learning, believing in an holistic way of teaching children.

We were sold. Greg called it "hippie classes" which I thought about today when she told us how each of our energy was now all flowing into one connected unit :)

We went to our first class this morning. The girls had a blast! It was painting, and they painted with potatoes and sponges and fingers. I didn't come as prepared as I should have, and Mara's cream leggings (what was I thinking, going to art class dressing her in cream?) displayed somewhat of a tye-dye look of greens and blues. She kept assuring me that it would come out, but I really did not care. The girls had so much fun, it would have been worth a few stained clothes.
I love the mix in ages. I was a bit concerned that Analese would be the oldest one there, but was pleasantly surprised that there were at least 4 other children her age. The girls loved seeing the babies all covered in paint, and the mom next to us had her 2 month old girl with her, so the girls were excited!
Next week we'll be more prepared in our attire...and hopefully I'll remember my camera!

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

My baby is growing up..

In ten days, my baby will be two years old! I still cannot believe it.

Though she is changing in so many ways. Her language has increased tremendously over the past month, now talking in 2-3 word sentences. She is so determined to get her message out, and will resort to body language and charade moves to help us figure it out. My favorite word she says "Sister", which is what she calls Analese.

She is so observant, just like her big sister. She loves games, and really looks forward to Daddy coming home at night so we can all play a game together.

She is also showing us her fiery spirit as well. I have seen some leg stomping and yelling coming out of my sweet baby! But she is still easily calmed down with some hugs...for now.

She is now using the potty. Not consistently, but she has gone a number of times and sat for about hundred more. She can feel when she goes, and becomes all panicky abut getting to the potty. Eventually she'll learn some pre-potty signs to help us get there beforehand!

Another big change, which is bittersweet for me....Mara is beginning to wean. In many ways, I am proud. Proud that we were able to nurse for two years when there was so much pressure to put her on formula with her allergies. I know that this pregnancy has pushed her towards self-weaning, which brings many different emotions. For one, it is a blessing to me in many ways, as it has been very painful for me the past month to have her nurse. There is also the fact that when she is finished nursing, no more food restrictions for me! I have been without dairy and soy for almost 2 years, without gluten for 10 months. I do not necessarily miss these things, what I miss is the opportunity to eat out...maybe Greg and I can on some dates before baby #3 comes? I would also like a break from food restrictions before the baby comes, because chances are high we'll be right back on them when he or she is born.

But I still cannot help but feel sad that this part of our relationship is ending....this afternoon I took her into my room and held her as she drank her hemp milk. She was fine with it, drinking up and then going to sleep. I will admit to crying once I left the room.

It's a good thing, I know. She is doing it on her own terms...I have not and will not refuse to nurse her. So we'll see. One step at a time.....

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Sunny and 70

I think my New Year's resolution should have been to not post often or keep up with other people's blogging.....I would have been successful! Sorry I haven't been around much, I haven't gotten much computer time lately. The girls have been coming into bed with me in the morning (OK, Mara is usually already there) and they watch a show while they drink their milk. Once the show is over, it's TV off and we get up for breakfast. It's been great on limiting their television watching even more-we are down to 30 minutes in the morning and sometimes another 30 minutes in the afternoon. Not too bad! Plus having another 30 minutes to lay in bed half-awake is great for me as well :)

But, my point in all this is that my morning computer time is no more. I could usually get on while they watch their show, but I instead have traded it for sleep. I try and get on throughout the day if the girls are involved in something without me, but its tough. I am sure this will all change in a few weeks once school starts up again. I am taking a web design class, which I am really excited about!

The weather here has been BEAUTIFUL! It has been close to 70 degrees outside, making my resolution to get outside very easy! Yesterday we met Greg's cousin and a friend of mine at the park, and we walked and then hung out at the playground. It was so nice to be outside, and the girls just love their cousin Ryan, who is 9 months old.

Today Analese had speech, but we packed a lunch and headed to a park afterwards. Another fun time! We stayed for a few hours until we had to pick up our food order.

Oh-cute story. After speech, I was helping Mara into her car seat when Analese suddenly just bursts out crying. Once I got her calmed down a bit to understand her, she cries "I FORGOT TO TELL MS. RENEE YOU HAVE A BABY IN YOUR TUMMY!" She was devastated, and was not comforted by the fact that the baby will still be in there next week.

It's been a great two days, but it has been exhausting for me. Once we get home, the girls go to sleep and I clean up from the morning. It's not giving me any down time and by 5 o'clock I am worn out! I will be heading to bed here shortly, once I know both girls are finally asleep.

My tummy is popping out and my belly button is even half popped out! It's funny that it is happening so soon, but I always hear that it happens sooner with each child. I am doing the safety pin trick on my jeans, and living in sweats when I am home. I told Greg that we'll have to get my maternity clothes down from the attic soon...just so I can be comfortable in a few more things!
I hope your all having a good week, and I'll be back on when I can! I am off to eat some rice cream and go to bed :)

Friday, January 4, 2008

A First Glance...

at our newest member of the family!

Isn't it great?

She put me a few days past 12 weeks, which I had myself at exactly 12 weeks today so pretty close! My due date will be mid-July.

The ultrasound went well. Preparing Analese for it was interesting, as she would go back and forth from being excited to scared. Mara just kept yelling "Baby!" and rubbing my tummy :) During the procedure, Analese just sat, amazed. Mara took one look and then said "go! go!". I don't think she liked how dark the room was.

The baby woke up towards the end and started moving all around, which the girls loved. Analese told me "she was dancing in there!"

The girls had no nap today and were in bed by 7 tonight! Greg is out doing the grocery shopping and meet-up to play I have the whole night to myself. Lots of posting, and hopefully I new layout if I can find one I like :)

My Resolutions

So I started a list a few days ago of the things that I would like to work on this year. Some involve things I would like to do as a parent, things I would like to do with my time, things needed to be done around the house.

So, as a parent:

  1. Get the girls-and myself outside. Every day. Rain or shine (as long as it is safe). The girls need it, I need it. We have been really good about getting out until a month or so ago and the tiredness set in. I can already see the affects-we went outside yesterday and it was sooo cold, but we played tag and hide-n-seek and had so much fun!
  2. Get the girls more involved in daily chores. They already help me with laundry, dusting, and general picking up. But I think they are getting old enough for more responsibility, like helping me clean the floors, etc. Things we can all do together, and just have fun with it.
  3. Get us motivated and going earlier in the morning. My girls move so slow-as do I, and we never really get to start anything until 11. I think we could accomplish so much more if we could start our day a bit earlier, like 9-10 o'clock.
For myself:
  1. Bake more. I stopped baking as much with the no gluten thing, because it's tricky finding the right combination of different flours to use. But I need to start again, and get the girls involved as well. We made banana cupcakes today and they were really good.
  2. Take time for myself. That doesn't include school work, house work, or bills. I feel like I have been neglecting myself in this area, as I am usually too tired at the end of the night to do anything. I would like to renew my hobbies-scrapbooking, sewing, even reading for pleasure! I am determined to take one day a week and devote it to my hobbies.
  3. Relax and Just let things be. I tend to be a worrier about things I have no control of.
  4. Take more breaks-and not feel guilty in doing so.
  5. Simplify my life. Get off of mailing lists, get off of email lists on things I don't even look at.
  6. Spend more quality time with Greg. I never want to lose that connection with him, and feel the need to rekindle it before another being enters into this world demanding my attention! It's hard not to feel so "touched out" some days, but I also need to show some understanding to my husband as well :)
  7. Exercise more. I know-everyone says that! I have been having a lot of back pain ever since I threw my back out, and am wondered it will get worse as the baby gets bigger. I am in the search of a prenatal yoga class to take again, and plan to get the girls out walking on our trail once again.
For our House:
  1. Declutter and Simplify. This is huge on our list this year, as we plan to Freecycle a bunch of things we no longer use and is just collecting dust.
  2. Finish our basement. I really have nothing to do with this, unless nag Greg about it. It has to be finished before the baby comes and we completely run out of space.

I am sure I have more floating around in my head, but this is a start!

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Happy New Year!

Yes, I am a bit behind in the New Year wishes, but then I also just ordered our holiday cards so that lets you know I am a bit behind in everything these days!

Thanks for all the congrats! It still hasn't really hit me yet that I am actually pregnant. I thought it would sink in when I heard the heartbeat-which it did for a minute, and now I am back in this sort of ignorant bliss :) I mentioned this to Greg last night, and he said "Your just too busy to really pay attention this time around". Which is true, but I also feel that this baby deserves much more then a mama forgetting that he or she is in there! We have an ultrasound scheduled tomorrow, so maybe THAT will be the "oh my gosh" moment I need-and want!

Analese has taken such an interest in my tummy, and wants to know all things related to baby. She still asks me many times a day if the baby is still in there, and reminds Greg of this many times as well. Last night Greg was in the bathroom and she brought out a book I had showed her-which showed how big the baby was now, and what it looks like each month as it gets bigger. It's a great book-showing real images and all. Analese went through each photo that her and I had looked at the day before, telling Greg everything I told her! She even quizzed him a bit, saying "see this round thing? Know what that is? That's the yolk sac, daddy, and that helps feed the baby until she gets older". Greg was pretty impressed! She seems to be thinking about it all the time, and just blurt out questions out of the blue, like "What does the umbilical cord do again Mommy?" I have a feeling she will be quite the expert by the time summer comes!

This morning she was sitting on my lap and asks me if she is hurting the baby when she sits on my lap. I told her no, and she said, "OK, but if I kick or punch your tummy, would that hurt the baby?" I told her it could, and that it would definitely hurt Mommy if she did!

We have had a busy week, and it seems we are still recovering from it. The weekend involved a family gathering with my side of the family-it was great to see the girls interact with second cousins and all of my aunts and uncles. They had so much fun! My aunt has horses-the girl's new found obsession, and got to feed them some carrots, which they still talk about!

Unfortunately, Mara ate something she shouldn't have, and we ended the night her her vomiting once again. Didn't I say I wasn't going to give her food if I hadn't made it? I am so mad at myself, feeling bad that my aunt had set aside chicken for us to eat. She said nothing was on it, but she might not have realized that oils count as fault, and I will not be letting it happen again!

Last Sunday we took the girls bowling. We met all of Greg's sisters and kids and had so much fun! I forgot here on the East Coast they play with little balls-perfect for the girls. Analese and her cousin Carlee had the best time! Mara was still pretty wiped out from the night before but managed to roll a few balls in.

Our New Year's Eve was spent at home on the couch, watching a movie. It was nice after such a hectic weekend. Greg was asleep by 10 and I was in bed at 11:30.....when did we get so old?

I have my resolutions made up but I'll save that for another post! I am loving all the new templates and need to find a new one as well!