Monday, March 28, 2011

Leo's 3rd Birthday!!!

Family photo in front of our home

The best cake ever!!!
Aunt Tiffy, Somerset and Daddy
The Uncles

My Mom

I can't believe my little boy is three! Leo was once again blessed with a wonderful birthday filled with family fun, sweet treats and too many gifts. We decided to keep things simple and have a family only birthday. We all went to Chuck E. Cheese (as Tiff says, a casino for kids) and Leo was a bit overwhelmed at first, but got into the groove of things after a while. He loved the games, especially the one where he flipped balls into a frogs mouth and a basketball dunking one.

After Chuck E. Cheese, we had cake and Leo opened gifts. Joe and I bought Leo NBA themed gifts, but he was also given many clothes ( a gift for me really), an annual zoo pass, a batting trainer, art supplies etc. As usual, Leo cleaned up well and had so much fun opening his gifts.

We also had a special visitor fresh off of spring break...Uncle Aaron. Leo spent most of the day rough housing with his uncle, which Leo loves. He really adores his uncle. Later that night, Joe and Leo took Uncle Aaron back to college at OSU.

Joe took off Friday and Monday to make it a 4 day weekend!!! I love when Joe is home from work. I never get enough time with him and the kids love when he's home. We were also able to paint the laundry room! I know this seems trivial, but we had painted it a few months back and made a disaster out of the room. Previously, we had painted the room and dark reddish brown and because the color was so dark, every imperfection showed. It looked like a crime scene. It always bothered me and Joe, so we decided to rectify our mistake and re-primer and repaint the room (ugggg!), this time opting for a creamy, tasteful tan. It sounds boring, but it looks clean and fresh.

Today we had photos professionally taken of the kids. They turned out so cute! I am so excited to frame them and place them above our empty mantel. I have been waiting for just the right thing to put above the fireplace and I think these photos will be perfect.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

The Countdown

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Leo is reluctant to have his photo taken, but I did manage to quickly snap this one of him. I know I am his mommy, but he is soooo handsome. Look at those eyes (thanks Joe)! Since he was a baby, we have always sung him the John Lennon song Beautiful Boy.

Leo is getting so excited for his birthday and we are thrilled to spoil him. He wants to know what day of the week it is every day so that he can know how many days are left until his birthday ( a great way to teach him the days of the week too)!

As much as I would like to ignore household duties and tickle my baby's feet all day long, I have to multi-task. I must seem like a crazy lady at times. Today, when I took Summy grocery shopping, she was strapped to me in her Baby Bjorn and I was talking to her about every purchase. I also include her in on the discussions about laundry, cooking and cleaning (how bored must I be)? I did this with Leo as well, and he has excellent verbal skills, so I know it won't hurt. Well, it turns out that Somerset really enjoys being thrown in with a pile of (clean) laundry. Leo and Somerset, thanks for helping Mommy's mundane chores seem fun.

I am back to work 2-3 shifts a week and it has been fun to get out, socialize and talk to customers and co-workers. I was finally able to impress Leo by saying, "Isn't it cool that Mommy works somewhere that sells candy?" He is obsessed with the WS jelly beans. I think I will have to buy him some to maintain my cool status.

Monday, March 21, 2011

6 Months Old!!!

Somerset was the same size as this owl when she was born!
Somerset seems to have inherited my crazy hair!!! Sorry Summy Bear!
New Jordans!!!

I can't believe that my baby girl turned 6 months old! Every minute of her life has been amazing. She has really added so much joy and happiness to our family and I feel extremely grateful to be her mommy.

Today is one of those days when I feel so lucky to have such a happy, healthy, and sweet little girl. This morning, I checked on her after she had been napping for a while. She looked as though she was just waking up and greeted me with the biggest smile. I held her in my arms as she melted into me and then I changed her diaper. She had a huge mess in her pants and hadn't even complained. That's my Somerset! She is so sweet and gentle and I LOVE every minute with her.

Leo has been a great boy this week. His behavior seems to be improving, so the approach I have been taking with him seems to be working. I have been much more gentle with him and have not elevated my voice for a week now. No matter how challenging he has been, I stay calm and that seems to be working. It takes a ton of patience, but if this works, we will always be a yell-free household.

Leo got an early birthday present, a pair of retro Jordans that match daddy's. He loves them and had to take a walk (run) around the neighborhood as soon as he got them to show them off and see how fast they were. He LOVES them and they are adorable.

Last week we checked out Space Jam from the library and Leo has fallen in love with this movie. In fact, he is watching it now!

We are all so excited about Leo's 3rd birthday on Sunday. I think this is the first birthday he'll remember, so we want to make it special. I am sure I will have many photos to post next week.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Time Flies

I can't believe Somerset is almost 6 mos. and Leo is nearly 3. People always say time flies, but with Somerset, it really has. It is so wonderful to watch her grow before my eyes, but a bit sad because she is most likely my last baby (but really, who knows). I am constantly trying to remind myself to cherish these days; the days of Leo being a little boy and Somerset being a baby. I only wish that sleep deprivation weren't such an issue. Perhaps this is nature's way of telling you not to have another baby right away. Anyhow, I love these two little people more than I could possibly have imagined. Without a doubt, I would put my life on the line for either of them without thinking twice.

In the last few weeks, we have had some issues with Leo's behavior. I have adopted a policy of never raising my voice around the kids. It is difficult at times, but how can I expect Leo not to yell if I yell. Joe is also doing the same. At times, I feel I need to see a parenting expert to learn how to discipline Leo properly, but all in all, Leo is an exceptional little boy who is just too darn smart for his own good. When Leo is angry, he doesn't know what to do with his feelings, so he lashes out, sometimes throwing, sometimes yelling and sometimes hitting things. It makes me so sad, and I realize that he is so young and is learning.

I have been back to work for a few weeks now (Williams Sonoma a few nights a week). Joe has done a great job of getting the kids off to bed and I enjoy the extra income and the adult interaction outside of the home. My WS money goes straight into savings, so it's fun to watch that grow!

Monday, March 7, 2011

My Birthday

Today is my birthday and although getting older is never fun, I am so blessed with my wonderful family, that I can't help but be happy. Joe surprised me with an overnight trip to Pacific City, OR, which is about 2 hours away. It is a very small coastal town, with not much to do, but we love it there! We were also so fortunate to have magnificent weather, which is a rarity for a coastal day in March. We experienced a beautiful sunset and when I woke up this morning, the sky was clear blue, which made our walk to the tide pools very enjoyable.

We decided to only take Somerset, which was much easier. Plus, Leo had a blast hanging with Grandma and Aunt Tiffy. He loves the beach, but probably would have been frustrated that it was too cold to play in the water or stay out for too long. Somerset had so much fun being the center of attention and it was fun to dote on her. We do love the Inn at Cape Kiwanda, so we will try to return with Leo during warmer weather.

As for gifts, I feel so lucky to have received so many wonderful things that make me feel pampered and special. I feel so loved! The best gifts were from Leo, who chose them himself...a candle (mint and basil. Joe said he smelled about 100 candles before he chose that one), a bottle of wine with a bicycle on the label and a gift card to Ulta. The best gift that I could hope for is my 2 beautiful children and my wonderful husband Joe. They make getting older a whole lot more fun!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Fire Station!

Today Leo's friend Forest celebrated his 3rd birthday by going to the local fire station for a tour. Leo had a great time and had fun exploring the fire house, meeting fire fighters and getting up close and personal with the beautiful trucks. When we first arrived, the fire fighters were called out on a quick run and Leo asked if they were going to rescue a kitty from a tree. Ahhhh, how sweet is that?

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Rock 'n Roll!

Leo won't pose like this with me!
This pretty much sums it up!
Somerset, pondering life

My baby had a lot of firsts this week. She had her forst bananas and the look on her face was priceless. "Mama, what is this horrible taste, no wait, maybe I like it. I really am unsure of what to do with this flavor." I wish I had caught it on camera.

I went back to work Tuesday night, which left Joe alone to tend to both kids (good job honey)! At bedtime, Somerset was so worked up in her crib that Joe found her turned on her stomach, which means that she rolled over for the first time. We have since caught her in her crib on her belly a few times, she is now officially a roller!!!

She is also giggling now too, but you really have to work for it. This girl is not as easily as amused as her brother, who would laugh at anything. She is just a much more calm spirit than he is.

Often, I will go into Summy's room in the morning or at nap time and find her awake, but just chillin'. Leo never would have done this. He would scream for me to come and get him as soon as he woke up, where as, Somerset will just amuse herself. It's amazing how different their temperaments are.

Leo is almost 3, so we have been trying to figure out what to do for his birthday. I think we will keep the celebration small and just for the family for one more year, but he really wants to go to Chuck E Cheese.

Leo is still being defiant and constantly challenging us with his behavior, but he has such a sweet spirit. He dotes on his sister and he promised me that he would always love her. We really are so blessed to have these two children in our life!