Saturday, December 31, 2011

We Loved You, Baltimore

It's the last day of the year, and our last day in Baltimore. I can't really bid this city a proper farewell. It's the place I've called home for my entire adult life, it's the people I've met who've become my family; Baltimore is a part of who I am. So I can't say goodbye because I'm taking a little bit of it with me, hon.


Today is the last "last" in a long line of "one last time". Tomorrow brings with it a new year, a new home, and more firsts than I know what to do with.

We loved you, Baltimore!
Every day was like an open door!
Every night a (loud) fantasy
Every sound was like a symphony...

We loved you, Baltimore!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

More Christmas Cuteness

We finally made it to see the Miracle on 34th St tonight - the lights were a lot of fun. Maddie was especially fond of the house with trains set up inside and out.

This night shot is a little rough, but it's so rare to get a picture of all four of us that I had to share it.

We came home and enjoyed some cookies and milk, then left some out for Santa. Maddie dictated the note to Santa and I wrote it down.


Then we got the kiddos dressed in their matching Christmas pjs. Could they be any cuter?


DSC_0254And now they're tucked in to bed, with dreams of sugar plums (or Dora) dancing in their heads...ready for the excitement of tomorrow!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Merry Christmas!

Did you get our Christmas card? No? Oh, right. I didn't send any. This is the picture that was going to be on them. Pretend it's a card.


This season has obviously been a chaotic one. I mean, Christmas is always crazy, but add selling your house and moving across the country with a one and two-year-old in tow, and you get a whole lot of chaos. And boxes. Lots of boxes.

We've been visited this year by the Elf on the Shelf. Maddie named him Christmas, and every day (even on days when he's tricky and eats her yogurt covered raisins), she tells him what she wants for Christmas. It's the same things every day - a necklace like Dora has. I hope Santa gets the message.

We didn't have a lot of Christmas wrapping paper, and so we made our own. If anyone gets a package wrapped in a two-year-old, I'd like her back, please.

The kids both spent some quality time reading their Christmas books while I frantically packed. Gavin was very into the snowman book and Maddie loved the Fancy Nancy Christmas story.

We didn't do much decorating (imagine that), but we did set up the kids' nativity set. It looks like a nativity massacre in this picture, but Maddie was just putting them all to night night.

And to kick off the holiday weekend, Dakota made us all yummy hot chocolate with marshmallows.

The kids loved it...

DSC_0068 evidenced by Gavin's marshmallow goatee...

...Maddie's smile...

..and that. Yeah.

So even though there's no tree, there's still some magic in the air and a lot to be in awe of.

Merry Christmas, everyone.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Get a Melissa & Doug 25% Off Coupon When You Take the North "Poll"

Melissa & Doug want you to tell them which of their educational toys you think is the best! Just click on the image below to place your vote in the North "Poll!" You'll Get a Melissa & Doug 25% Off Coupon** to use at just for voting!

South Mountain Creamery

All of these showings have us heading out of the house a lot, and the kids do better if we have a destination in mind. Dakota found out that a visit to South Mountain Creamery includes a chance to bottle-feed a off to the creamery we went!

DSC_0032In fairly typical Maddie fashion, she first picked out her favorite baby cow.

DSC_0062But then, she was too afraid to feed any of the cows, so Gavin stepped up to the plate bottle.

DSC_0064After watching for a while to be sure it was safe...

DSC_0086Maddie joined in the fun (only to get bonked on the head by a calf that jostled her milk bottle a little too aggressively).

DSC_0102.2Fortunately, this creamery also has amazing blue ice cream with sprinkles (the actual flavor is completely irrelevant to a 2-year-old) and it comes in an adorable kid-sized cone. It really doesn't get much cuter than this.

DSC_0112Though this is pretty darn cute, too. Gavin got his first taste of ice cream, and it was definitely love at first taste. Forget the apples. Bring on the ice cream.

Saturday, November 5, 2011


Our big trip to the Midwest was definitely a success. The kids had so much fun seeing their grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins. It was such a success that we really want to make it happen more often, and all of the pieces fell together when we realized Boulder, CO would be a great option for our family. See why we want to be closer?

Baking with Grandma Jean.

Snuggling with Grandma Jerri.

Reading with Grandpa Rob.

Checking out the fire engine at the Omaha Children's Museum with Grandpa Larry.

Visiting Great Grandma Reiny.

Keeping warm with Aunt Katrina.

Making ice cream with Uncle Ken and Daddy.

Cuddling with our friend Kop.

So, we're heading West, where we hope to all have more time to stop and smell the flowers.

Friday, November 4, 2011

You've Got to See This!

So I'm a bad blogger. A very bad blogger. A non-blogger...but in the time since I last posted, we've decided to move to Colorado, prepped our house for sale (I say that as though it was no big deal - ha!), and we've put the house on the market. Oh, and I have two kids two and under, one who is potty training during all of this madness and the other who, well...see for yourself!

Think you can forgive me for not blogging?

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

We're Baaaaack!

The car ride went about as well as we could have expected. It was not without tears and drama, but everyone was doing better after we stopped at this children's museum in Terra Haute, Indiana. It is THE BEST Children's Museum!

When we came in, they told us there was a seat at the water table for babies. We did not understand that the seat was IN the table and the water table would then be surrounding the baby! Gavin stayed in there until he was absolutely freezing, but he had a blast.

Dakota went off to find a bathroom and next thing I know, he's over playing in the bubbles. Literally. In the bubbles.

Maddie climbed up to the top of the beehive climbing structure (we were so impressed! That is definitely outside her comfort zone!).

And I know sometimes nursing wears me out, but seriously, this is impressive. And I was thrilled that the museum would have such a cool exhibit, especially since people sure seem to get uptight about breastfeeding. Apparently it's cool for piglets, but less cool for human babies, given the stares I get sometimes. But I digress.

While I don't have pictures, Dakota might consider me remiss in my blogging duties if I don't tell you that the museum had air guns, a paper airplane launcher, and enough K'nex to build a gazillion cars to race on the soap box derby-like racetrack, which he and Maddie did for a loooooong time.

After two days of driving (and a not-too-successful night at a hotel where Maddie very clearly explained that, "I don't want to stay at hotel. I want to go home.") we reached Wentzville, MO, and more importantly, the cousins! Maddie and Gavin had so much fun playing with Brady and Reagan, Ella and Eli!

Brady taught Maddie how to tummy swing.

Maddie and Reagan enjoyed some yummy frozen custard (Maddie ordered pink).

Baby Eli slept. Isn't he adorable?

Ella stuck pretty close to her mom for a while, though I love this smile she flashed me!

Dakota and Brady had some quality man time playing Mario Kart (I played, too. It was really hard...kudos to all of you who come in better than last place).

Gavin got in some playtime with Maddie and Reagan. He just wanted to be included!

And the girls got a little crazy together.

My favorite part of the kids playing together had to be when they were all playing in the leaves. The absolute joy on their faces was beautiful. Have I mentioned I want a yard?



And that was just the first three days of the trip! We took over 1100 photos on this journey (and we schlepped through 10 states!) so I'll do another highlight post with our visits with the Grandparents soon. I'd say tomorrow, but soon is probably more accurate.