Thursday, December 31, 2009


One day last week, after work, I had the crazy idea that Riley, Annie and I should make some Christmas cut out cookies. I put them both at the kitchen table and we mixed the dough and rolled out the cookies. Riley did great....Annie did not. All she wanted to do was eat the dough (understandable, I guess, for a 17 month old)...but then she got mad when I took it away, she started throwing it everywhere, and then had a fit when I had to remove her from the table.

When the cookies were finished baking, I again attempted to have them both decorate them. Annie did a bit better- I let her eat and play with the icing, so she was happy. I was so busy helping them and trying to prevent Annie from eating everything, I totally burned the burgers for dinner, and had to make new ones.....we still made a huge mess, but the girls had fun and we made some memories....maybe next year it will go a bit more smoothly.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Christmas with the Laube Family

The weekend before Christmas we packed up the kids and headed to Mimi and Papa;s house to celebrate Christmas with the Laube's. Anna and David are in Sweden, and Lynne and her kids were supposed to come by got struck with Pink Eye (yuck), so it was just us, Mom and Brian, Auntie Joannie and Uncle Steve and Chrissy, Scott and Kaitlyn. It was nice, though. The girls all had fun playing and we exchanged small gifts and ate some yummy food that Mimi and Papa's place catered for us (best macaroni and cheese I have EVER had) are a few pics from the fun:

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Santa visit

A few weeks ago we went to Riley's school for Breakfast with Santa. It was a fundraiser for the school and we thought both girls would enjoy it. We ate a teeny tiny breakfast of pancakes and bacon, and then we stood in line for the girls to visit with Santa. I was hoping that Annie would sit on his lap, she loves to look at pictures of Santa and say "that" at him....but it was a no go. As soon as we got close, she stuck her head in my shoulder and didn't even want to look. I knew she would have a fit, and really did not want to do that in the middle of the school cafeteria!

But, Riley, of course, had no such issues and up she went to tell him what she wanted for Christmas (an Easy Bake Oven, Barbies and coloring books!), and they snapped this picture, which we received a few days later in her folder from school- for FREE!!!

Thursday, December 17, 2009


Annie has been sick. Really sick.

It started last Friday- she was fine when I dropped her off at school, but when I picked her up, they said she had been coughing again and was running a slight (99 degree) temp. I figured she was just getting another cold, and she seemed ok that night. In fact, she ate a ton of pizza at dinner, so I was hopeful that maybe it was just a quick thing.

Unfortunately, at about 10:30 that night, she woke up screaming and coughing. When I went in to get her she started choking, and vomited all over herself and the floor. I took her into the bathroom, and she started wheezing badly, and then gasping for air. She vomited again, and was then really, really gasping and she sounded horrible. I ran the shower for steam, and we quickly gave her a breathing treatment...nothing worked. I started freaking out- we talked about taking her to the ER, but I didn't want to get in the car with her like that- by myself, since Todd had to stay with Riley, who was sleeping through all of this. I called my mom quickly to see what to do, and at that point, Todd said- call 911- so I got off the phone- they were coming over to keep Riley- and I called.....

EMS came and they took us to the hospital- my first ride ever in an ambulance- and gave her O2 and another treatment on the way. They took her temp- it was 103.5- and she was pretty out of soon as they got us in the room, they did another treatment, and then another...Todd showed up....they took a chest xray. The respiratory nurse thought she might have croup and talked to us about steroids.....

Finally, the doc said that they thought it was pneumonia and that they would give her antibiotics and to continue the breathing treatments, and they sent us home- without another word about croup (this will become important!).....

So, Todd and I spent the rest of the night holding her upright in the chair to sleep....and the next day, more of the same, and the next night, and the next day....she sounded like a train- her breathing was still so heavy and labored and she wasn't sleeping at all- we were tempted to take her back, but decided to just wait it out.

Finally, Monday morning I called her regular pediatrician and took her in....and in a matter of minutes told me that it sounded like classic croup, not pneumonia, prescribed her steroids and said she should feel better soon.

And sure enough, by that afternoon and the next day, she was much better, and now (Thursday) she is breathing great and sleeping through the night again....

Such a scary, scary weekend for us....I am so grateful that it wasn't worse and that she is feeling better now....

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Children's Museum

A few weeks ago, right after Thanksgiving, Riley, Annie, Laney and Karen and I made a trip to the new Children's Museum in Greenville and we all had a wonderful time. I knew that Riley and Laney would enjoy themselves, and they did, but Annie had a great time, too. I am so glad that she is walking- she had a ball pushing the shopping carts and in the little farm display especially for toddlers. I can't wait for Sophie to visit in February because we are so going back with her!!

Unfortunately, I did not bring my camera, but I knew Karen would have hers! So, if you are so inclined (and I know several of you will do anything to see pics of Riley and Annie!), you can visit her blog to see the photos, and even a TON of videos, too!! Karen is a much better blogger than I am!

Monday, December 7, 2009

On reading

Books. I love to read. Really, although I don't have as much time as I once did, I very much enjoy reading. A few years ago, I wrote a post about wanting, hoping, for Riley to enjoy reading as much as I do. I took her to the library, bought her lots and lots of books and read to her constantly. worked! Riley starting reading herself at an early age and now she is a voracious reader. She loves to read. Yesterday I left her in her room for quiet time while Annie and I napped- and she read for 2 hours! Straight!

Anyway...that brings me to Annie. As a second child, she does not get the constant attention that Riley did, unfortunately. With Riley, I read to her as an infant....Annie- well, not so much :( Early on, with Riley, I made books a part of the bedtime routine. We would sit and rock and read some books, and then she would go to sleep. Well, Annie's sleep sagas have been well documented here....mainly, she did not like to sleep so much (this is MUCH better now, but that is another post). So, reading books came later with Annie. But, we do read, and Riley reads to her, and I had hope that it would be enough.

I am pleased to say, Annie has followed her sister's footsteps in this way, even without all of the extra attention to books that Riley had. Basically- Annie is now OBSESSED with books!!! It is constant- all she wants to do is have us read to her. And we read the same few books over and over and over and over and over (you get the point!) is hilarious. Sometimes she will let Riley read to her, which is great because it gives me a nice break to get something done around the house, like laundry!

And we have now incorporated books into her bedtime routine, I am proud to say! So, I have high hopes for little Miss Annie, who, even though we started off slow, should be reading, just like her big sister, in no time!!!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Song for a Fifth Child

Thanks to Karen for making me aware of this...I love it, and not just because it gives me an excuse to why my house is a HUGE mess :)

Mother, oh Mother, come shake out your cloth
empty the dustpan, poison the moth,
hang out the washing and butter the bread,
sew on a button and make up a bed.
Where is the mother whose house is so shocking?
She's up in the nursery, blissfully rocking.

Oh, I've grown shiftless as Little Boy Blue
Dishes are waiting and bills are past due
The shopping's not done and there's nothing for stew
and out in the yard there's a hullabaloo
but I'm playing Kanga and this is my Roo.
Look! Aren't her eyes the most wonderful hue?

The cleaning and scrubbing will wait till tomorrow,
for children grow up, as I've learned to my sorrow.
So quiet down, cobwebs. Dust go to sleep.
I'm rocking my baby and babies don't keep.

by Ruth Hulburt Hamilton
It's been a while, and I apologize. I seem to have a few new readers so I am excited about that- welcome!! Things are moving along...December is typically a busy month here, as I think it is for everyone, so I made Todd buy me a white board calendar and I put all of our activities and appointments up there and I love it! But it really makes me realize how much we do!

Anyway, here are a few pics my mom sent of the girls from a few weeks ago. We went to visit Mimi and Papa and I had these cute matching outfits, so I dressed them up and off we went!

They were coloring together and Annie was rolling around on the floor and stepping all over the sheet, which did not make Riley happy...but they look cute :)

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving

I have so much to be thankful is hard to put it into words....I have everything I would ever ask for or need....

especially these two perfect little human beings

I am incredibly blessed to be their mother.....

Monday, November 23, 2009


Had kind of a crazy weekend. On Saturday, we went for our annual Christmas pictures-the girls looked so cute dressed in the same dresses from Grams, although Annie was not crazy about having her picture taken so we got some ok photos, but nothing great. Except for Riley- her individual shot is beautiful. We saw three other families there that we know, which was just so weird. Riley's teacher, Mrs. Graham was there with her family!

After lunch in the mall- pizza, YUM- we headed to see Santa. I had a feeling that Annie would not be too crazy about the big guy this year, and sure enough, she wouldn't go near him. We all ended up taking the pic with him, but we did not buy it. I am hoping that she will warm up to him and we can get a better shot of the girls later on.

Saturday afternoon was sunny, so we played outside, but then on Sunday it was cold and rainy and Annie has another cough, so we did some Thanksgiving food shopping and then spent the rest of the day in the house...and I think we are all about to go crazy by the end of the day....I hate those days with nothing to do!

And then Annie was up a lot last night coughing, although she seems better today so hopefully whatever she has is already on it's way out...although I am starting to think maybe it is an allergy??? Who knows....

Monday, November 16, 2009

Nivens Apple Farm

A week or so before Halloween, we took out annual trip to Niven's Apple Farm to see the animals and take some pictures and buy some apples to make yummy things with! Last year when we went, Annie was just a little baby...this year, it was fun to watch her see the animals- she loved the donkey- and let her play a little bit. I tried to find the pictures from last year, and it looks like I didn't even blog about it- maybe I have them somewhere on the other computer- I will take a look. I did find my blog from 2007, if you want to take a look!

We bought some apples and made homemade applesauce and an apple crisp, and Todd bought an apple fritter there this year...and O.M.G- it was YUMMY!!!

Enjoy the pics!


Annie playing in the leaves at school:

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Halloween, Part Deux

So, Halloween day was rainy and cold and dreary and I was afraid that Trick-or-Treating would get rained out :( Fortunately, the mall here in town does a T-or-T, so we decided to go so at least Riley and Annie would get a little bit of candy, and then maybe we would get lucky and the rain would stop.

So, we got the girls all dressed up and we headed there about 4 pm. Thank goodness we got there early (it started at 4), because there were a TON of people and kids there, and as we walked around, stores were already running out of candy. Apparently, the entire city had the same thought I did! We saw Laney there, but she wasn't feeling well, and we were going to get something to eat, so we didn't chat for long.

We decided to get something to eat while we were there, which turned out to be a mistake on my part...not sure if Annie was tired or just cranky or just being a toddler, but she DID NOT want to sit in the highchair, she did not want to eat- at all- and she was just all together a mess. The only time she was happy was when I left the restaurant with her and we walked around the mall- then she was all smiles!

Anyway, when we got home, Annie went right to bed! The weather looked ok, so Todd and Riley decided to brave it, and headed out in the neighborhood and did their T-or-T thing.....until it started POURING down rain on them...and back they came, soaked, but Riley did not care one bit....she had a bag full of candy and she was happy as could be!!

So, that was our Halloween....not perfect, of course, but the girls had fun and that is all that matters....

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Funny things my kids say/do

  • So, Riley and I were chatting last night- she was watching Barbie as Princess and the Pauper- she is VERY much into all things Barbie still- and she was wearing her Princess crown and talking non-stop through the movie, as usual. And she comes out with this: she has decided that when she grows up, she would like to be one of two things- either a veterinarian, or a Princess. So, I told her that in order to be a Princess, she would of course need to marry a Prince since she was not born into a royal family. And she says.....Well, DUH, MOM!!!
    UH.......where on EARTH did she learn that....and how old is she, 16?????? :)
  • I dropped Riley and Annie off at school this morning (Todd usually does drop off now, but he was up late last night working on a computer, so I volunteered- what a nice wife!). I dropped off Riley first, and off she went, and then I drove to Annie's school. We were early, so I decided to hang out for a while and play with her. Her newest obsession lately is with BOOKS. OMG...she LOVES them!!! She wants to read the same book over and over and over and over, and then she moves onto another book and wants me to read that one over and over and over....well, you get the point! So, we sat down and read a few books and then she must have gotten bored because she went over to the baby dolls and started playing with them. So, I said something to her teacher about her playing with the dolls, because she doesn't do that at home, and they both said that she plays with them all of the time at school. She feeds the babies and burps them and rocks them (and she does- I observed this when I was there- SO CUTE), and even tries to change their diapers!! She seems a bit young for this, but it makes sense because there are a ton of babies in her class....
  • Annie has also started to notify us when she has made something in her diaper! I remember Riley doing this to, at about the same age (we even have it on video)...she walks up to us and pats her bottom....with a silly grin on her face! Whatever- it works for me, and I know that is means she is just one step closer to potty training....she will be getting a little potty from Santa this year, I believe!!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Trick or Treat, Take One

Annie and I did some early trick or treating around the campus where she goes to school on the Friday morning before Halloween. Her school does this every year- it is a really big deal for the students and teachers- and last year I went with Riley, and Annie was a little baby, so she was left at Miss Amy's house. So it was fun this year to go with Annie, even though she really had no clue what was going on!

She was pretty good- at least in the beginning. Towards the end, she was pretty restless and wanted OUT of her stroller, but I just kept feeding her M&M's and that made her happy!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Parent Teacher Conferences

Todd and I had Parent Teacher Conferences at Riley's school last week. It was supposed to be on Monday and Tuesday nights, but I was out of town so we arranged to meet her teacher, Mrs. Graham, at school on Thursday afternoon. Of course, no surprises- her teacher talked about what a great student Riley is, so smart, very articulate, interacts social well with all of the children....and on and on!! She got a "report card", which was really just a list of things that she should be able to do at this point, and scored well on everything, with the exception of knowing her zip code (which she really DOES know, and for some reason did not answer correctly that day).

We also asked about her reading level, because the books she is bringing home are still way to simple for her....she reads them in a matter of seconds. Mrs. Graham actually said that those books were the highest level they have for kindergarten, so she will need to get some new baskets from the 1st grade!! And I have no doubt that she will finish those level books, too....I believe she is probably reading at a 2nd to 3rd grade level, although she has some issues with comprehension the higher she goes....

So, basically, a glowing little genius!!!

Monday, November 2, 2009

More Annie pics

Here is another round of Annie pictures from school!

Sweeping the floor- wonder what it would take to get her to do this at home? :)

And here she is, helping to carve the pumpkin at school. This tells me a lot- why she was so interested in helping me carve our pumpkin at home- she stuck her hand in it, ate the inside (oh, ICK), and then proceeded to trip and fall in all of the pumpkin guts and make a huge mess of herself and our sidewalk....

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Icky Sicky

So, Annie has been sick.

She actually has been coughing off and on for several weeks- since before the beach. But it would be bad, and then get better, and then get bad again, though never really enough for us to worry. Until it did, and so we did (worry, that is!). Added to the fact that I was planning a trip overnight, away from the kids, with Todd in charge....well, we decided that she needed to be checked out.

So, I brought her in on Friday afternoon, and the pediatrician (not her usual) said she had a sinus infection, gave us an antibiotic, a steroid for her lungs and liquid Albuterol because she was wheezing. And off we went home.

That night she slept very little because she coughed so much.

She coughed off and on Saturday...when she woke from her nap, she was miserable and we missed a birthday party because she was coughing and just not happy.

And then she didn't sleep on Saturday night....really, not at all.

And she coughed, and coughed, and coughed...enough that she vomited several times (and all over me) and finally I had enough.

So, I packed her up and we headed to the ER, just she and I. We waited for 2 1/2 hours in the waiting room. She was actually good- she played with me a bit, watched a little TV and then fell asleep in my arms.

When we were finally seen, the doc did an x-ray to rule out pneumonia and checked her oxygen levels (both were ok- although at one point the nurse almost didn't let us leave b/c her O2 level had decreased, but turned out it was just because Annie was hysterical from having the cuff on her foot)....

And they told me she had bronchitis, not a sinus infection. In fact, as it turns out, babies do not HAVE sinuses until they are older!! AND, he also told me not to give her the liquid Albuterol- it is only for ADULTS!!! SERIOUSLY!!!

So, she had a breathing treatment, and a prescription for the machine, which they dropped off the next day...and has been getting better since then.

It was a rough weekend....but she is feeling much like herself now and I am so glad. It is hard to have a sick baby.....really hard. But I am soooooo sooooo grateful that she is healthy- that both of my girls are. Just one night in the ER makes you realize how different it could be if they were not.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Riley rides the bus!

Riley had her first field trip last week on Friday. They went to an apple farm not too far from here, where they picked apples, went on a hayride, walked through a corn maze and a pumpkin patch. She had a great time- she came home with a bag of small apples and a little pumpkin, which she wants to paint.

But, the most exciting part for her- the BUS RIDE!! There are 8 kindergarten classes at her school, and 4 of the classes were supposed to go on Thursday, and then the other 4 on Friday. But, it rained on Thursday, so they decided that all 8 classes would go on Friday! Which meant that they had to cram onto the bus, but it didn't bother her...they sat three in a seat and off they went.

I wish I could have gone, but the timing was off and they only let 2 parents per class go...maybe next time!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Annie has some fun....

Annie had two days off of school last week for a teacher work-day and parent conferences, so Ms. Donna came to stay with her last week.

I think that they had a good time- Annie liked being home and taking it easy and playing with her own toys all day.

One day Donna brought her little doggie, which Annie enjoyed:

Then she had some fun- I think she kept Donna busy and I am pretty sure that Donna earned every penny we paid her :):

And even had a little rest (she wouldn't take her afternoon nap in her crib, but decided the floor would work just as well):

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Monday, October 12, 2009

Riley- what a difference 2 years make....

Ok, so check this out.....I knew I had the same pic somewhere...

This is Riley this year at the Jaws store (basically a store at the beach that sells all beach stuff- you have to walk through a shark to enter!):

And this is Riley 2 years ago at the store:

See how she only comes up to his the first pic, she is almost as tall as the bear! Wild! She is getting so big- her legs go on forever and ever....I look at her sometimes and wonder how she got so big so fast.....


Not sure why I do that to myself- I should have learned from when she was a baby- as soon as I started to think that we were making progress with the sleeping thing- she turned around and did the opposite....

So, yeah- we had a rough night with Annie last night. The girls and I spent the afternoon at Grams and Gramps' house since Todd was golfing all day. Annie fell asleep for about 5 minutes in the car on the way there, and I should have known that was a bad sign. She didn't want to sleep in their crib, and then I finally got her to sleep, she only napped about 45 minutes.

So, last night, I knew she was tired and tried to get her to bed early- but that was a no go. Then, just as she was falling asleep, Todd came home, and then she was done! He tried to get her down twice, and finally I just rocked her until she passed out, by this time about 8pm- Riley was already in bed!

Then, she woke up about 9pm, screaming. She was standing in her bed, screaming, but as soon as I picked her up, she was out again. Not sure what that was all about- she isn't sick- maybe teeth???? Who knows....she slept ok after that aside from some coughing (from her and Riley- seriously- they have been coughing in bed for WEEKS), I am tired and hoping it was just a fluke!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Saturday, October 10, 2009