Thursday, June 5, 2014


Well, it was an exciting first day of summer! The girls spent the day together at the sitters house. When we got home, we headed on a walk to the park. Midway through, I was unwinding Leo's rope that got caught in the stroller when I remembered that I hadn't checked Ella's loose tooth (a daily routine). I wiggled it just a bit and it was barely hanging on! So there we were in the middle of the road pulling it out! She was a trooper, and fortunately that one was painless. I was screaming with excitement but she wasn't quite sure if she was excited or nervous or sad. She had a lot of logistical questions regarding the Tooth Fairy's arrival... how she gets the she gets in the house...and whether or not she'll pick up Ella's head in the middle of the night. I hope she is excited for her treasure in the morning!!!

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Last Days

Ella is having a blast in her last week at preschool! She has had a pajama/movie day, and a swimsuit/water activity day. Tomorrow is the last day and will spend it outside where they do more activities! She will be with Erin this summer, and I'm excited for the girls to spend a little more time together. :)

Learning New Wordies

Erin is getting to be very fluent with her words! Most times, we know what she is trying to say. Sometimes, she adds her own Erin-isms:

"Shoesies" = Shoes
"Huggies" = hugs
"Kissies" = kiss
"Uppy" = up
 "Socky" = sock
"Outie" = timeout
"Wipey" = baby wipe

Another favorite right now is her pretend cry. She'll wimper with her lip out and try to make you laugh. So cute!!!

Wednesday, May 28, 2014


Erin is our little public safety officer right now. Anytime we get in the car, we hear:

"Mom! Buckle! Dad! Buckle! Ella! Buckle!"

Stop and Smell the Flowers

Public Service Announcement:

It's summer: time to get outside. Get some sun. Stop and smell the flowers. :)

Terrible Two's

With Ella, she was 18 months when the tantrums started. She was not much older than that when the timeouts started! I remember her evening out at about 2 1/2.

With Erin, I was pretty happy with her behavior from 18 months-2 years. But I SWEAR, the day after her 2nd birthday party, it started. She has definitely developed her own opinions, her own ideas, and her own little 'tude! I wouldn't say any major meltdowns have happened yet, but there are definitely times when I know I wont change her mind. Stubborn little donkey. :)

Memorial Day Weekend

It must be summer, because we never seem to be home!!! We had a fantastic, busy 4-day weekend filled with:

 Preschool Graduation - Thursday
TBall - Friday night and Saturday
Graduation party in Marshalltown - Saturday
Campfire/grillout with friends - Saturday
Graduation party in Elkader - Sunday
Visit with Gma and Gpa Gus, and a trip to my nephew Jordon's home - Sunday-Tuesday!

We hope you had a great weekend as well!

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

The Song that Never Ends

Several opportunities have presented us with a chance to sing Erin "Happy Birthday" over the last several days. Tonight, 3 days after her birthday, we were eating leftover cupcakes on the deck when I noticed Erin pause before eating her cupcake. I asked her if she wanted us to sing, and she answered "Yeth." So we all broke out in Happy Birthday while she grinned ear-to-ear.

It was so adorable! I don't mind singing it all year long. :)

Dentist Visit

If you've spent any time with us over the last two years, you'll know the struggles we've had with getting Ella to the dentist. There have been tears, screaming, kicking, pouting, and total meltdowns. Today, it was Derek's turn to try. He has a very clever way of getting in Ella's head. Turns out, she did great today! They not only counted her teeth, but they also brushed and flossed them! She has one wiggly tooth, which was news to us. :) Today was a HUGE victory, so she was rewarded with ice cream and a happy meal.

Erin's Birthday

Erin's birthday was a blast this past weekend! She shared her Bumble Bee party with several of our closest family and friends. Missy made outstanding bumble bee cupcakes, and we indulged in breakfast burritos, fruit, and hashbrowns. The kids also enjoyed a "cake walk" game!

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Erin - 2 years

Erin @ 2 years:

Favorite book: Picture books with animals
Favorite character: Elmo
Favorite movie: Elmo
Favorite game: building blocks or hide-and-seek with Ella
Favorite toy: her dolly and her penguin (Squish)

She can:
  • jump with both feet off the ground
  • sing several songs (ABCs, Twinkle Twinkle, Rain rain go away, etc)
  • ask you if she's being funny
  • spell her name
  • pull Leo across the kitchen floor with his collar
  • count to ten
  • sit on the potty (hopefully we are only days away from our first success!)
  • hold Leo's eye open for 20 seconds
  • lift Holly, a full gallon of milk, a small wooden chair, and the laptop
  • melt your heart with her sweet words
  • give a fish faced kiss
  • recognize ANYTHING that is different from Ella (she does not let you treat her like a baby anymore!)

Mother's Day Weekend

Mother's Day Weekend was very busy! We celebrated with both sides of our family Saturday and Sunday. On Saturday, we went to the Mennonite nurseries.......while it rained. On Sunday, we went on a picnic to Hickory Hills........while it rained. On Sunday night, we went on an unsuccessful mushroom hunt..........while it rained.By bedtime, we all had dampened moods.

I was not impressed with the weather, but I felt very loved by my family! I have several hand-picked flowers blooming on my deck. :)

Friday, May 9, 2014


Our family is very excited for Ella's first real sport........t-ball. It started this week, and Derek is "head coach" which was a surprise to us! After a little organizing, communication, and equipment pickup, the team was ready for their first practice. There are 11 players on his team, and there are 4 t-ball teams in town.

The first practice went great, and they all seem really excited about the season.  Go coach!

Life Goals

Ella's topic at preschool this week has been learning about the community. They visited the bank, post office, and library to learn what each place does! They've also been talking about what they want to be when they grow up. Ella drew a picture of a cooker, which she has had her heart set on for a while! Among the others were: "kop," fire guy, pokemon trainer, cowboy, rockstar, and astronaut.

Supper's Ready

The other night, I was cooking supper in a nice peaceful kitchen while everyone was playing outside. They started wandering in as it got closer to 6:00.

Erin said approximately 50 times: "I want supper ready?"

Derek responded: "10 more minutes, then it will be ready."

Erin (wandering back outside): "One..........two.....three......four......five........thix..........