Monday, June 29, 2009

El and the Trike

I don't know how she does it, but with a small tilt of her head and a little smirk, Ellena looks SOOOO mischievous!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Babies, Babies Everywhere!

What a busy time it has been for our friends and relatives - babies, babies everywhere!

My cousin had baby Austin on May 13 and we can't wait to meet him next month on our trip!

Then, Pops's sister had baby Kade on May 19 and it sounds like he is growing FAST! We hope to meet him soon!

My childhood friend had baby Chase on June 22 (a few weeks early!) and he is adorable! Another baby we get to meet on our trip! Yay!

And, we will soon have two little girls join our Mommy group! What an exciting and blessed time!

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Birthday Extravaganza - Part Deux

Today we went to Seattle and walked around the market and had lunch at my favorite place, Wild Ginger. It was nice that my brother could join us in our little adventure.

The market was a mess - tons of people. I never bought from the roasted nut vendor before (across from the newstand), but we got some tasty caramel cashews and lemon pepitas. Yum. I've also never bought anything from the candy shop - Rocky Mountain, but have always admired their tasty displays from outside. Today we went in and from all the appealing dipped marshmallows (which are one of Evan's favorite treats) and apples, he chose dark chocolate covered cherries. Go figure.

Lunch was amazing, as usual. Kids ate up and they had the leftovers for dinner - I am still stuffed from lunch and am skipping dinner tonight. :) Got home, El took a nice, long afternoon nap and I got to do some sewing. What a terrific day!

Birthday Extravaganza - Part One

Yesterday Poppa took the day off and we had a really laid back day - so nice! After Evan went to school in the morning, we had a picnic lunch at the lake and a little bit of water play - kinda cold.

For dinner we went to Fins Bistro on Front St. which was a special treat. Pops wanted to go there for Father's Day but we didn't call in early enough. He had the crab fettucine (yum) and I was pleasantly surprised that their miso black cod and yakisoba were sooo good. The kids ate really well and we topped it off with some tasty treats - raspberry sorbet and super rich chocolate cake.

Couple of clowns

Notice that El does not take her eyes off the cake and ice cream to take a picture.

And with these two little monkeys, of couse we had to have an OMG moment. The water boy came around and Evan said, "Thank you, Jose!" Yes, he was Hispanic, but still... We can't even say it's cause he looked very much like Jose from our favorite Mexican restaurant. So we told Evan next time, don't call him Jose, cause we don't know what his name is. Just say, "thank you" and that's all. When he came back, he was laughing and chatted with Evan - "How did you know my name was Jose? Just cause I'm Mexican?! Well, you're right!" Ha ha! Phew, glad that went over well.

Friday, June 26, 2009

11 months!

Today Ellena is 11 months old - and it also happens to be my big 3-oh. Special day, I know. Ellena is now cruising along tables, couches, bathtubs, anything she can pull up on. She is getting faster with her low army crawl. And she can eat everyone under the table. Dang, this girl can EAT. We also started her on whole milk last week and she's getting pretty good about drinking from a cup. She has not really gotten the hang of sippy cups, and seems to prefer regular cups. Like a true baby/toddler, she is excellent about taking things out of boxes, but not so great about putting things back in. :) And the things that she can comprehend sometimes blow me away. She somehow understands phrases that mean someone is leaving the room, so she knows to wave bye bye. She also knows that when I grab my bag and keys, that we are leaving and she waves bye bye. Ellena also gets into her snuggly moods and she will cuddle up to Evan - very cute.

Yesterday Ellena fought her afternoon nap. She would squirm and then be quiet, squirm and then be quiet. Usually when she fights a nap, she will howl non-stop. So I wasn't sure what she was doing (a video baby monitor would be so handy right now!) We were heading out to go bowling, so I figure, if she's not going to sleep, we might as well go. When I went in, I found her passed out (finally!), with two books in her crib. This was done by reaching through the slats and dragging them into her crib. Needless to say, she was quite cranky when I woke her up.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Play Date

Today we had our buddy, Isaac, over for a play date. The boys had such a wild and crazy time. They made peanut butter crackers and here they are eating it up. They really enjoyed putting sprinkles on.

The kids also went outside for a bit and then helped me pump up the exercise balls. Then they ran wild with the balls. Holy cow. I had them sit on the couch and cool down for a bit while I put the balls away... And I came back to find them wrestling. BOYS!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

So... Ethnic

Today is ethnic day for Evan... or something. In my previous post, I mentioned how he was talking about being Chinese. After lunch, he said he was Japanese. (All true.) Then, I got a call from the nurse who will be coming to the house tomorrow to do the life insurance stuff. Evan digested that info and then asked me if the nurse was German. Huh? Where does he come up with this stuff?


Our friend, Aunty Amy, got the kids some outfits - kung fu outfit for Evan

and China doll for Ellena.

I had the kids put on the outfits for a "photo shoot" and Evan kept bouncing around the house saying, "We're CHINESE! Ellena, we're Chinese!"

Monday, June 22, 2009

Late Night Shenanigans

Last week we had some late night shenanigans with Evan. Pictures would have topped this post off perfectly, but I didn't want Evan to feel like I would photograph him in embarassing situations, especially in sleep. That, and we didn't have a camera handy...

The first shenanigan: We put Evan down and maybe half an hour later he came out complaining about being hot and sweaty. We try not to go back into his room as much as possible so that he doesn't keep inventing new excuses to get our attention. So we told him to put on shorts. He insisted he was too tired to do that. But we countered that he wasn't too tired to come out of his room and complain. So he went back to bed. When I went to check on him before my bedtime, I was almost in tears from laughing so hard. Evan put on shorts alright - OVER his pajama pants! Ha ha! I guess he really was too tired to think straight.

The second shenanigan: Evan has a turtle puppet that can tuck its head and arms into its shell. He was playing with this before we tucked him in. After a bit, he came out very upset, complaining that his turtle's head is upside down. We told him to either fix it himself or don't worry about it. When I went to give him a kiss before I went to bed, I saw what he meant. He had pulled the turtle's head all the way through the body and out the backside... and indeed, the head was upside down. I fixed the poor, mangled turtle and left him with Evan.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day

Happy Father's Day to all the wonderful dads out there! Here's Pops having a quiet moment with the kids and an iPhone game. Having a low key day (cause Pops is a low key dude) - went to Fry's this morning (Evan says that store sells "man toys") and gonna try to take him out to dinner at the brewery.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Annual BBQ

Today was our bbq with our Mommy Group families. The kids are getting so big!

When it was time to say goodbye, Evan did not want to smile for a picture with Emily.

But it was all smiles for Maddison.

Then, Isabel didn't want to take a picture with Evan. Kids are so funny.

Friday, June 19, 2009


Here's Evan posing with one of the strawberries that he grew, which he then gobbled up.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Who Needs a Play Gym?

I have yet to sign Ellena up for any classes of her own. I just haven't found anything that fits with our schedule... yet. Hopefully when Evan's school is back in session in the fall, we'll find something.

In the mean time, who needs a play gym? Ellena created her own play gym in our kitchen and likes it just fine.

Here she is jamming on the kitty keyboard. She plays some music and dances along. When the song is over, she crawls to the Tigger airplane toy (seen in the background of the picture). She plays music on this and dances. Then goes back to the keyboard when the song is over. Back and forth, back and forth. She made this game up all by herself. Too cute.

She has made some great strides in pulling up and cruising. She's definitely getting stronger every day. And where is Evan in all of this, you might wonder. Well, Evan has made palsies with Grandma Madeline - now that Grandma's school year is over. The last three days he has been going over to Grandma's house. I asked if he wanted me to pick him up this afternoon after I feed Ellena lunch. He said, "No, I'll come back at dinnertime." Alrighty, works for me!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Couple of Monkeys


We had seen a show on Food Network about meatloaf and they had some interesting pointers that I never thought about before:

1 - Saute your vegetables before mixing into the raw meat. That way the flavor of the veggies really comes through.

2 - Rather than cooking the loaf in a meatloaf pan (where it will be cooking in all the fat that runs out of the meat), form the loaf and cook on a cookie sheet.

I'll be trying that out today and we'll see how it goes. Because we're meeting up with the Mommies this afternoon, I'm cooking it now and will warm it just before dinner. Gotta love the loaf.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Space Needle

It only took 12 years, but we finally made it to the Space Needle. :) A very fun Seattle adventure yesterday - the most overpriced elevator ride, but the kids liked it. Great views, a lovely walk to lunch (our attempts to eat at a couple sushi places fell through when we found out they were closed, so we ended up at 'Ohana and were stuffed with a tasty meal!) Then we headed back to Seattle Center to celebrate our friend's birthday at the Children's Museum. What a busy, fun-filled day!

Friday, June 12, 2009


Today was Evan's last day of school and they celebrated with a carnival. Evan was so excited! When we parked the car, he could see the playground area where they had set up 2 bouncy castles. They also had face painting and fishing for a prize. He also got to eat Otter Pops for the first time - he loved them and ate about 4 of them. Ellena was a good sport through it all, being carried in the frontpack. I don't know how I'm going to manage it next year with her running around.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Help! Help!

Funny story from last night. I was showering and Ellena was entertaining herself in the bathroom. All the doors were closed so that she couldn't wander off and get into mischief. Evan came in to join us but decided to leave with his Legos. As he was leaving, Ellena started following him out. I told him he had to close the door behind him, so that Ellena wouldn't get out. Somehow, she ended up crawling into his lap in the doorway and then grabbed for his Legos. Evan started crying out for help in Spanish (from Diego), "Ayudame! Ayudame!" Sorry if I'm totally butchering the spelling of that. Since I was stuck in the shower, I told him Poppa would have to help him. So he yelled out, "Ayudame! Ayudame! Poppa! There's a robbery!" Ha ha, he's so drama.

Sign Language

Ellena has picked up a few signs, which has been helpful - especially at meal time. She knows, "more", "all done" and "milk".

Every night after bath time, Poppa takes Ellena to her room and gives her a bedtime bottle. He always asks her what she's going to get. She opens and closes her hand to show the sign for milk. And then she waves bye bye to us as she leaves. However, Pops has drilled the "milk" sign into her so that ANY question he asks her, she responds with the milk sign.

Today she was in a giggly mood so I brought out the camera to capture some smiles. I kept asking her, "Where are your smiles, Ellena?" And she replied with the milk sign. Too funny. So the above pic is of Ellena making her milk sign in response to my questions for a smile.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Exercise/Diet, etc.

Oh P90x - you were fun while you lasted... After 4 or 5 weeks of Tony Horton, I've had to give up the dream... Cause there's just not enough hours in the day. I started skipping workouts in favor of sewing - I HAVE TO finish Ellena's birthday party clothes before our upcoming trip. Two shirts down, two dresses to go... And I tried waking up at 5 AM to do a workout before the kids' days start, but it did not work for anyone - I was one big grumparoo that day.

So here's my happy compromise (with myself) - jump on the elliptical for half an hour as soon as I put El down for her morning nap. I get some cardio AND get to read a book. Sweet.

Watch my snacking during the day, which can get out of control if I'm just bouncing around the web and stuffing my face.

Sew during El's afternoon nap and Ev's tv time.

Portion control dinner - no second helpings - I'm not pregnant anymore. And watch the desserts.

Pops thought I was looking slimmer tonight, but I think he was just being nice. We'll see how this new plan works out.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Scoot Scoot

Today Evan got a scooter from a garage sale. He LOVES it! And he loves putting on his helmet and knee pads. He'll just cruise around the house in his gear. And he takes us around the neighborhood, taking little breaks along the way cause he gets tired.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Evan's Family

This morning Evan stuck his stuffed animal Bear in his shorts and carried him around. I asked if that was his baby and he said no. I asked if that was his joey and he was a kangaroo. He thought that was funny and started jumping around.

He was disappointed that I wouldn't let him take Bear to school in his shorts, but got over it. He put Bear back in this afternoon. And then I washed Puppy (Poki took Puppy away and I had to wash off the Poki germs) and he stuck Puppy in his shorts along with Bear. I asked if Puppy was a girl or boy. Girl. I asked if Bear was a boy or girl and he said, "Bear is a boy. He's Puppy's big brother."

To not confuse the gender issue, I asked if Evan was the Poppa. He said, "Yes, and you're the Momma! And... Poppa is the kitten." Ouch, Pops rates as the family pet.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Carnation Farmers Market

We had a wonderful time at the Carnation Farmers Market this afternoon. A very fun adventure for the Mommy group! Here's Evan spinning around with the big kids at the park next door. That was probably his highlight of the day.

Here's Ellena, not amused, as usual. It was too hot for her.

My highlight - the slice of homemade strawberry rhubarb pie from Sno-Valley Senior Center Grill. Oh my, that was tasty! The apple pie from the bakery was not so good, but Evan thoroughly enjoyed their cookie and we'll be having their apple cinnamon bread for breakfast tomorrow.

One of these Wednesdays we may try out the Sammamish market. This one was cool cause the Carnation market had a lot of their own vendors (not seen at Issy).

The Finger

No, not that finger...

Ellena loves to point. She learned this from me - when she would do something silly/naughty/rascal, I would point my finger at her and say, "You.... Yooouuuuuu.... Yoooouuuu!" Now when I do it, she points right back and gives me a rascal smile.

So she loves to point - at people, at the cats, at food, at toys. Anything and everything that she is interested in at the time.

Here she is cracking up cause she was lifting her dress up when I was trying to take a picture. I admonished her for flashing her stuff, and she thought it was soooo funny.