Saturday, November 28, 2009

Thanksgiving Blessings

We've had a fun week!  After Mommy had her night out to see New Moon on Monday, and a happy hour with co-workers on Tuesday, it was all family, all the time!  My parents drove up from KC to share in the Thanksgiving dinner with Scott's family (mom's side.)  As an added bonus, we were also able to spend part of Thanksgiving evening with the Goers' family (Scott's dad's side), too.  Needless to say, we were all full and wiped out by bedtime.  It's such a blessing to be able to spend both Thanksgiving and Christmas with my parents this year...that hasn't happened in a really long time - 15 years maybe??

We also managed to take our family picture for the Christmas card - of course it was FREEZING when we took it, so we weren't able to spend too long to get that "perfect" shot...but we're happy with the final results.

Here are a few pictures from the past few days:











Scott and I just finished putting up the tree...the lights, cranberry garland and tree skirt are in place, so tomorrow is all about the ornaments.  Although this may be a year where we put out only the soft ornaments, or maybe just the top of the tree will be decorated...Ava does love to play with things that she shouldn't!

We have just a few more gifts to pick up, and then the wrapping fun can begin.  This truly is the best time of the year...!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Headbands = Hours of Fun!

I've been taking a lot of pictures this week, but not many of Ava...mostly they've been pictures of the dogs. I'm trying to capture an image of the three of them to use in our Christmas cards. Talk about difficult! I think I finally got one after three days of trying!

One of Ava's favorite things to do is run into our bathroom, open one of the vanity drawers, and pull out my headbands. She managed to break my favorite black one, so I decided it was time for her to get her own collection. I found a set of five fabric covered bands that are perfect! Within the first five minutes of playing with them, the pink one was broken (of course it's the one that would match most of her clothes...sigh.)

When we pick up the house at night, we've managed to find the headbands getting taken for a walk in the dolly stroller, hitching a ride in the pony's basket, and sometimes taking a drink from the dog's water bowl. That was the best $3 I've spent on her yet!

Even Daddy's gotten into the spirit, and will help put them on her head so she can be a "pretty girl."





In fact, Ava's even tried to put the headbands on Darla and Lucky! Here she is trying to convince Dar what a great accessory it will be...Dar didn't go for it.



And when we're done playing with the headbands, Ava likes to run into our bedroom and lay down in Spanky's bed. The covers and blanket have been freshly washed, but I'm still not crazy about her cuddling up in a dog bed. And frankly, I can't imagine Spanky's too pleased with it either!



The other night Scott checked on her before we went to bed. He called me upstairs to take a picture of her..she was sleeping so soundly, holding onto her puppy. When I see how big she looks in the crib, it makes me realize that she's growing up and she's not our little baby anymore.



Last weekend I switched our our lightweight quilt for our down comforter, so I needed to get all of the blankets out of their Space Saver bags. Before I knew what was happening, Ava hopped onto one and started riding. I love how the most simple things can make a child so happy! If only we could all be so lucky! :)


Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Little Kids Big City pictures

I finally have overcome my tech issues, and have downloaded my photos from Saturday afternoon's playdate with Dylan and Lisa (and a few new friends...)  Enjoy!

The other little girl (Leah) that was there was immediately taken with Ava.  She did a great job keeping Ava entertained! 

As soon as we got inside, Ava picked up a bear from lost & found and carried it around with her for a while.



Dylan, Leah, Ava, the bear, and Leah's brother (I didn't catch his name) on the fire truck.



Here's Ava's future prom date, Dylan, at the cash register in the grocery store - all the kids loved playing with the fake money!  Notice Ava carrying around the fabric softener bottle...is it too early to teach her how to do laundry??









This school bus was so cool - lots of neat gadgets to keep the kids busy.





We almost had an interactive moment here between Dylan and Ava.  Almost.



So close, yet...not quite playing together...



Chalk + toddlers = messy, messy, messy!



Back to the bus!


Sunday, November 15, 2009

Technology hates me

So, craptacular week #1 continued into week #2.  There was a power outage on Monday that blew the power supply to my PC, making it completely unusable.  No power = no PC.  Scott's been letting me use his PC, but I miss having my stuff readily available.  I'm learning to be flexible...deep breath in, deep breath out.  The irony is that I'm getting a new laptop in a few weeks, but I still need to be able to power up the PC to get all of my pics, Quicken, etc. to move to the new laptop.  But, it's fine - I have the power supply part, and now just need to corral Scott when he gets home from hunting so he can install it for me.

But, onto happy Ava news...she's biting again.  This time it was ME.  She bit my wrist and top of my hand yesterday when I picked her up to get her ready to leave.  It didn't draw blood, but I was really hoping she was moving past that stage...but I guess she's not!  Maybe she's part vampire.  There has been a lot of Twilight/True Blood/Vampire Diaries in our house.

Unfortunately, with my technology issues this week, I wasn't able to download any pics to post.  But, I did get a new camera yesterday (my Canon stopped working recently...seriously, does the tech world hate me?) so I'm excited to get the software installed and get new pics loaded.

Other than my tech issues, we really did have a good week.  With Scott on his 4th weekend of hunting, Ava and I have had a lot of quality time together.  Enough that last week, she kept calling both me and Scott "Mommy!"  She's such a daddy's girl, so it was nice to be first on her mind for once.

We had a very fun play date with Lisa and Dylan yesterday at Little Kids Big City in Woodbury.  It's a large room with all sorts of kid equipment/items to play with.  There's a fire truck, a post office, a playhouse, a car/truck service center, and a grocery store.  Ava was happiest when she was carrying around detergent and bleach bottles.  See, she really is my child. :)  At a few points, she grabbed some wrenches and other tools, so Scott would be proud.  Ava and Dylan are still at the age where they don't fully interact with each other, but there were a couple of moments where they realized there was another kid there to play with.  We went to Applebee's afterwards, and Lisa and I had a chance to catch up without worrying about the kids falling off the fire truck, or eating chalk.  Once I get my pics available, I will post some to the blog.

Last night Ava headed off to Grandma Deb and Grandpa Whitey's house for a sleepover.  She loves going there, so we're happy that the dynamics are such that it all works out for us.  With my child- (and Scott) free night, I headed out to downtown St Paul for some girl time with Angie.  We saw the Titanic omnitheater movie at the Science Museum, and had the chance to chat about decor and life over drinks at Mancini's.  Coming home to a human-free house was odd...there were 3 furry little beagles to greet me, but it was weird to be the only two-footed mammal there. 

So, I'm taking this time to catch up on paperwork, be a little lazy, and look forward to later in the day when my baby and hubby come home.

Have a great day!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Scooter's Slippers

It's been a crappy week.  There was another round of layoffs at BI, and one of my favorite people to work with was let go.  So, now the office won't be nearly as fun - but I'm thankful to still have a job.

It's hunting opener up north, so Scott has been gone all weekend, but he did get a deer yesterday!  He got one a few weeks ago down south with his bow, as well.  I'm not really sure where we're going to put all of this venison! 

With our wood floors, Ava's been slipping and sliding around a lot in her socks, so I decided she need a pair of slippers.  The bottoms are pretty fluffy, so it's going to take some time to mold them to her feet.  In the meantime, Scooter the Cat loves wearing them!   



Ava was having fun piling up Scooter, Dollie, and Elmo into the rocking chair.  I wonder if she's too young to play with my Cabbage Patch Dolls??  I know Scott's hoping for a tomboy, but she might like playing with dolls, too.  YAY!





We had a nice walk outside last night since it was in the mid-60's.  We're hoping it's nice again today, too, so we can spend some more time outdoors!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Last year Ava was a cute lil' chick for Halloween, but she never really had the chance to show it off, since she was only 4 months old at the time.  This year; however, she was out and about, begging for candy like you wouldn't believe!  I picked up a super cute butterfly costume for her at Old Navy...plus it was a warm, fleecy costume, so she could actually spend some time outdoors in it.

Here's her cute daytime Halloween outfit, courtesy of cousin Izzy!



We first stopped at Grandma Deb and Grandpa Whitey's house last night for a quick visit.











And then we stopped over at Grandpa Bruce and Grandma Sandy's house...they had picked up a kissing Elmo for her.  She's been kissing us and the dogs a lot lately, so this is perfect for her!  Elmo makes exactly the same sound that Ava does to kiss...a big loud "MAH!"



Then we went onto cousin Greg and Dawn's house for some yummy potato soup...and a glimpse of the future when Ava is older.  Tayla and Ryley (Greg and Dawn's kids) were heading out with their friends to go Trick-or-Treating...I remember when they were Ava's age!

Finally, we ended the night at Great-Grandma Adeline's house to celebrate her birthday.  Scott and I took Ava out for a little bit up and down the street...she totally picked up on holding the bucket out for candy!  I couldn't believe how many "She's adorable!" comments she received.  

After about 20 minutes of that, we went back to the house.  Ava had so much fun playing with the toys and BIG laundry basket of candy that Adeline had.  Plus, Ava had the chance to play with her cousins, Calleigh (princess) and Jenna (pirate) for a bit, too.  Amazingly, there was very little fighting over the candy or toys!







The biggest lesson I learned this year is that it pays to buy the costume early...!  Oh, and that this year only, all of Ava's Trick-or-Treating means that Mommy gets to eat the candy. :)

I'm a Big Girl Now!

After seeing how Ava did in Isabel's booster seat last weekend, we made the decision to have her join us at the table for meals.  I had NO idea there were so many different kinds of booster seats out there...I did quite of bit of online research to see what our options were.  I was happy that we found one that matched our kitchen decor so well!

Ava made the transition with ease...she seems so happy to be sitting right at the table with us.  I also bought her a couple of cute Mickey and Minnie Mouse plates, which have separate areas, made just for dipping.  Ava is getting very good at dipping her food/spoon into ketchup/syrup/.  She finally understands that food goes on the end of the fork/spoon, and THEN you put it into the mouth.  It's been a really big mealtime week for us!

This also means that mealtimes have become a little messy...here she is dipping, and still in her highchair.





We've made the move to the booster seat!  I was so happy to put that highchair into storage...our kitchen feels so much bigger without it now.





Scott was helping me clean yesterday, which means that Ava was also helping me clean.  :)  She had so much fun with the duster!

Scott's getting ready to get her engaged in cleaning...notice the duster lurking in the background...





Look at how happy she is here - I'm so proud of my little girl! :)