Friday, January 14, 2011

January happenings

Aunt Katie has promised to send me the rest of the pictures from our trip, but she's busy wedding planning so it might be this weekend. That's okay Aunt Katie. We still love you! Now go sample cupcakes!

January is when I can really start getting depressed. Snow. Cold. Gray skies. Even Sammy doesn't want to go outside much. So we have been trying to stay busy with indoor activities. I don't know if I mentioned previously that I bought a few tools with Sammy in December...

Just your usual 5-year-old boy tools like a jigsaw and a power sander. No big deal. :) Well, I cut out the shapes and then he uses the sander, and the hammer and nails, and we make stuff. Last Sunday we made this little castle tower. It's very rough. The nails all went in crooked. But it passed an afternoon.

Wella's favorite past time is in the kitchen sink. She loves water!

We've (well, "they've") been working on this map of the world puzzle given to us by Grandpa Norton for Christmas. I helped a little bit with Canada, but now their is only blue ocean left and that's boring, so I kinda quit.

Rolls and rolls of chub.

We get her naked way too often to look at all of the chubs.

I took a leap and switched the master bedroom with Sammy's bedroom. Matt and I just never go into our room until we're going to bed, so there was really no reason for us to have such a giant bedroom. So now we live in this little tiny room that only fits our bed, but I think it's cozy.

I did it with Sammy and Claire one day while Matt was at work. He wasn't so sure about the switch when he originally saw it, but I think he's warming up to it.

Look at Sam's room now! It's awesome! I DID keep the big closet that is between this room and Sammy's room for Matt and myself, and my dresser is still in here, but Sammy is the first one awake in the morning so it's no big deal to get in here when we need to.

And now he has room for his costumes and weapons and games and there is a Leggo table (the little red stools are by the green dresser awaiting fuzzy stickers on their legs so they don't scratch the floor).

It's Sam's room, but I call it the play room because now the kids have some place to play since Luella sleeps in Claire's room now and is often taking up the room for her naps. Claire's doll house is in the corner I'm standing in right now, so she has that to do.

Here is Wella sampling the cars from a game called Rush Hour. It's a bunch of little plastic cars. Choking hazard? Maybe.

But she mainly likes the school bus which is too big to swallow so she's okay.

Claire's working on making her lifesize person with all the internal organs on it for science.

We got this idea from my sister who did it with her girls last year. Claire loves it!

 And I spent a day remembering how hard it is to be a mom with no one to take care of you when I slammed my finger between the sections of our garage door on Wednesday. It was worse than it looks on this picture. I promise. I'm saying that because it's true but also because I need a little pity since children aren't very good at nurturing you when you are hurt. Like, when you are trying to not throw up from the pain and they say things like "Are you okay mom? I don't want ham sandwich for lunch...I want peanut butter and jelly. okay mom? OKAY?" I have some serious character to develop in these children.

Anyway, we're just trying to make it through the Chicago winter. And looking forward to Katie's warm summer wedding!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Wichita trip: part 1

On December 29th we got to go visit my family in Wichita. It also happened to be Matt's and my 9th wedding anniversary that day, so Claire and I dug out my wedding dress and let her try it on while standing on a box. It was weird to see her in it. Of course it was too big, but I actually thought it would look bigger. She's getting too big!

Claire and Sam love playing with my old toys when we're there. The first night, they found all the old costumes they could find and did a show for the grown ups. Claire was a spastic clown.

Sammy was the guy that signed in the people who came to see the show. And apparently the sound guy as well.

Grammy (my mom) put on the dog as usual. The first night she made her fajitas, which is our family favorite. Matt's especially!

The next day my dad gave Sammy the job of helping him cut down a dead tiny tree in our yard. 

He also needed to haul these big branches out of the yard that he had gotten trimmed so the boys spent a day trimming up the branches into firewood size.


Sam was in heaven, of course.


And we used a few of the biggest branches to make this sweet teepee! I actually had the idea for the project and got it started, but then my dad decided that although the idea was a good one, we needed to start it all over and do it a slightly different way. :) Nothing like going home to make you feel like an 8 year old again! Haha.

Of course, his idea WAS better than mine and he even finished it off with buffalo skins/bed sheets to make it into the real thing.

We spent a GOOD chunk of our trip at a frozen yogurt store called Orange Leaf that my baby sister, Katie, manages. It's the coolest ice cream concept ever...and a cool looking store.

You pick your own yogurt and serve it yourself and then you go to the toppings bar! The best part.

Here is Katie modeling the chocolate for us.

And here she is ringing us up. You'll notice that in both of the above pictures she is showing her ring finger a lot. :)


That's because she just got this from her boyfriend Chance!!! Sparkly huh?

And Chance might have had flowers delivered to her WHILE we happened to be there buying yogurt. Wow...he's good.

Wella just made Grammy and Grandad love her even more with her cuteness.

Grammy held her most of the time. I kept telling my mom that she could let Luella sit on the floor, but Grammy mainly wanted to hold her (which of course Luella loved). After this, my camera died and we forgot to bring the charger, so the rest of the pictures were taken by Aunt Katie. When she sends them, I'll post part 2 of the trip. It was very fun! Wedding planning and scavenger hunts for the kids and other cool stuff. Stay tuned.