Saturday, July 30, 2011

Fun with Friends

Last week, my good friend Lauri came into town from Houston with her two kiddos, Connor and Kaitlynn. We had a great visit and the kiddos had a great time all together. Our friend Dana and her two boys, Jackson and Ryan also joined in on the fun. In total, the kids out numbered the adults...7 to 3. Whew!

During their visit, we went swimming in our community pool, we visited two malls, we went to Pump It Up, ate lots of good food and desserts of course! It seemed like every time we turned around, it was time to eat again.

Sarah, Kaitlynn and Luke raiding the pantry.

My three angels!

Love my girls--just missing Amanda!

Gotta love the double strollers.

And of course, gotta have a comparison picture. Love these stroller shots! This is December '08. Jackson, Connor, Jacob and Luke. Look how little they were!

Getting some loves from Aunt Dana.

One of our nights went a little late at Dana's house, so the kids borrowed pj's from Jackson. It was too funny. Connor and Jacob were wearing size 3T pj's when they normally wear 5/6T. What a sight it was!

One last group shot!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Bathtime Babes and more

I especially love it when the kids have been bathed, are clean, soft and smell delicious. I love their sweet faces in their hooded towels.

I tried to get a picture of all three together...

but Sarah had her own plan in mind.

There is no denying it, Miss Sarah-bear is walking all over. She is all over the place. Still falling several times along the way, she just gets up and keeps on going. Crawling is a thing of the past.

She loves walking to the pantry and getting what she can reach. This time it was a package of peanut butter crackers that she made a royal mess with! But she loved every minute of it!

Strike a pose.

Can you tell her older brothers love playing with her?

On another note, my mom turned the big 6-0 last week. We had a great weekend of celebrating complete with a girl's day on Saturday. Which included Kristina, Mom, and myself getting a mani/pedi, lunch (and dessert) at Celebrity Cafe, and lots of shopping.

For dinner Saturday night, we ventured out to a Japanese Hibachi grill. We had never taken the kids to a place like this so it was fun to see them experience it all. And of course the food was excellent! Happy Birthday Mom! We love you!

Friday, July 22, 2011

A big move

My sister, Kyla and her husband Michael and baby Joseph will be making the big move back to Texas in August. Michael accepted a job in the Houston area that he will start August 22. We are thrilled they will be moving back to their roots and excited we will be able to see them more often. And we are so excited to be able to get little Joseph together with all the cousins here.

They came down to Houston a few weeks ago and stopped off at our house for a night before they flew back to Minneapolis. While they were here, we had a small gathering so we could all see them. By some miracle we were able to snap this complete!

And again this one. All 7 cousins together!

Papa with 7 of his 13 great-grandchildren.

Grandma and Grandpa with the youngest two.

Congratulations Kyla and Michael on your relocation back home! We are so excited for you guys to be back!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Summer swims

Jacob recently had a week of private swimming lessons. There is a 15 year old that lives in our neighborhood that teaches at our community pool. She has a really full schedule of lessons but we were able to take a child's spot that didn't show up. She was great and he learned a lot.

The first day started with Julianne telling Jacob to swim to her. After he declared he didn't know how to swim, he tried to swim to her by doggie paddling and barely holding his head above water. After a few instructions from her, he learned how to do the American Crawl the first day. I think mostly it was him just trying to stay afloat and surviving the water that got him going.

Going back the second day, he was scared. I think he knew what was ahead and was very nervous about having to swim again. After a few tears, he got in and did it. Julianne really pushed him which helped him but I think also scared him. He also practiced floating on his back, diving for rings and jumping in off the side. He did great all week but was VERY glad when Friday rolled around and it was his last day. :-)

While Jacob did his lessons, Luke, Sarah and I swam on the other side of the pool.

But first things first. Baby girl needed a snack!

In order for me to manage all the kids in the water, Luke has to wear his life jacket. And thankfully, he wears it without a fight. And Sarah usually floats in her baby float for awhile which helps. And now that Jacob is on his way to swimming independently, it should make taking them swimming a lot easier.

Daddy was even able to join us for the water fun one day!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Potty time with Luke

I am happy, thrilled, proud, and so very excited to say that Luke is now potty trained. Wahoo! After many failed attempts, this time we were successful. When he turned three back in January, we tried then. However, he had no interest in using the potty or wearing big boy underwear. So I let some time pass and decided once we got back from our trip to Disneyworld, we would try again. Once again, he wanted NO part of using the potty. He would either hold it or go in his undies and not tell me. Such a mess! I think I tried a few times in between those two but quickly realized it wasn't the right time.

I would often talk to Luke about it. Telling him that he was three now and that means he's a big boy and big boys use the potty and on and on. His response to me was "but I'm ONLY three. I'm little." And he would put his thumb and index finger together to show me how little he was.

However, I was starting to feel a little anxious about it all. I knew he could do it physically, but he was just playing games because he didn't want to do it. I really wanted him to be trained before he starts preschool in September. I decided once we got back into town after the July 4th weekend, we would do it then. And I wasn't going to give up! So last Tuesday we started. He immediately started with his usual antics. Wouldn't sit on the potty, wouldn't wear his undies etc. Not a happy camper. But after about 30 minutes, he got it all out of his system I guess. Because he has done awesome since then. I guess it finally clicked! He had several accidents in the beginning. Several of which were a huge mess! But now, he goes on his own and it feels like he has always been trained. So, so happy to not be buying two sizes of diapers anymore.

He loved being able to put a sticker on his Elmo potty chart after he successfully used the potty.

So proud of our sweet Lukie!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Only at Grandma and Grandpa's house

There are just some things that the kids can get away with only at Grandma and Grandpa's house. For example, only at Grandma and Grandpa's does baby girl get an Oreo cookie.

Only at Grandma and Grandpa's house do the kids get to ride all over in the motorized cars. Sarah got her first ride and she loved it. She was all smiles and of course all she wanted to do was stand up!

And off they go. Luke was being the protective brother by putting his arm around Sarah. Mainly because I told him to hold on to her, but still it's cute! :)

Only at Grandma and Grandpa's do we play outside when it is 100+ degrees!

But thankfully, they have the very popular water slide that keeps all the kiddos cool! Only at Grandma and Grandpa's! Sarah had her eyes fixed on where she really wanted to be! :)

Only at Grandma and Grandpa's do they get to feed the donkeys.

Only at Grandma and Grandpa's do we all get fresh fruit and veggies from the garden. The cantaloupe and tomatoes were my favorite! Oh and only at Grandma and Grandpa's do the kids get to play with a dog...Abby, who belongs to the neighbor spends a lot of time at my parent's house when we are all there and outside.

Only and ONLY at Grandma and Grandpa's do the kids get to retrieve the frisbees that were accidentally thrown onto the roof of Grandpa's shop. Grandpa's idea of course! :)

Only at Grandma and Grandpa's do we get to do fireworks in celebration of July 4th!

Hmmm, I guess there is a reason Grandma bought the grandkids this shirt. :)

As usual, a good time was had by all! We all leave there exhausted, well fed and ready to go back! Thanks Mom and Dad for a fun 4th of July weekend! (I know this post is a little late...better late than never, right?) :-)