Thursday, July 29, 2010

my cozy girl

just a few pictures taken last week in the backyard. ever since riley was born, she has always been a snugly, i want to be laying right on top of your face, kind of gal. when she stays with my mom they snuggle in bed and sing, "cozy girls, cozy girls, cozy girls" and riley just giggles with delight.

lately she has been obsessed with taking all her dolls and stuffed animals and placing them all over the house and putting each one of them to sleep. she wraps them in blankets, gives them pillows to lay on and informs me that they are all sleeping. and if you've ever been to my house you know how small it is, which doesn't leave much room to move around when they are strewn across the house. and they tend to sleep all day long and can NOT be moved. it is just the sweetest though. she sings to them, pats their back, snuggles them...what a good big sister and eventually mama she's going to make.

all that to say, riley brought her pillow and blanket to the backyard and insisted on being cozy with her dog. actually, the dog she is snuggling with used to be my dog when i was a girl. my nana & papa gave me this dog for my birthday and i named him fluffy. i loved this dog and even took him to college. riley loves to remind me that i used to have that dog when i was a little girl.

my sweet, cozy girl...

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Swim Lessons

Riley took 2 weeks of swim lessons with her friends Bjorn, Saben & Annika the first part of July. We lucked out and happened to sign up for the 2 warmest weeks so far. It was so nice to lounge in the hot sun while Riley got to play in the water.

Lessons were a huge success this year. Riley has always loved the water and did great in her lessons last summer, but she has been extremely sensitive to water in her ears & on her face. It got to the point where we would only bath her 1x/week and wash her hair maybe 2x/month because she would scream and cry absolute bloody murder. It was never worth the battle for me. For about the first week of lessons every time the instructor would ask her to get her ear wet or blow bubbles she would refuse. They never pushed it and I didn't really care. It wasn't until her friend Annika attacked her from behind in the baby pool (where they played after the lesson) and got her head wet that she finally accepted the whole water on your face thing. We all watched as her eyes grew wide and her face had that look of "I'm about to completely freak out right now" so all of us on the sidelines cheered and clapped and exclaimed how awesome it was and that was that. From that moment on she happily put her face in the water and the next day at her lesson she was beaming with pride when she got her face wet for her instructor. She also is thrilled to have her hair washed now and is still so proud of herself that she can do it. Phew, that was a huge hurdle that we just crossed! So I guess I should be saying a huge thank you to Annika!!! We owe you.

This is a game Riley & Annika would play in the baby pool: climb out of the pool, watch the water drip from your bottom, shriek with laughter then jump back in the pool. Repeat 100 times.

Another game that was fun: tell your mom you are done swimming, have her take off your top, then before your mom can catch you jump back into the pool and run circles all the while squealing with delight.

Bjorn & Annika jumping, Riley smiling

Riley, Saben & Annika

Riley jumped off the diving board twice by herself!

We are signed up for one more week of swim lessons in mid-August. Should provide plenty of entertainment!

Monday, July 26, 2010

hiking disaster

last thursday martha, henry & maggie the moose (martha's dog) came to bellingham for a visit. we took the kids and dogs on a hike after lunch that quickly proved to be a comedy of errors.

our little human and dog creatures were running through the woods, happy as can be for about the first 10 minutes of the hike. riley then decided to hide behind a tree, (which she loves to do on hikes), and wanted me to come find her. as i was walking over to where she was hiding i heard her whimpering and when i got to her she told me she just had an accident. this is pretty rare for her anymore so i didn't have a single thing with me on the hike (including my camera which is why all these photos were taken with my phone!). she is ultra sensitive to any kind of wetness so she could not be convinced to hike in her wet pants. we stripped her down to her shirt and shoes and decided to turn around. the wet clothes went into the dog poop bag!

the nakedness did not stop the fun, however. we made our way back to the car where martha had some extra clothes of henry's. after dressing her in swim trunks, socks and nikes, we made our way to the lake where the dogs are allowed to swim. martha and i sat down and before we knew it riley and henry were splashing their feet in the water. we warned them this would make their shoes/feet wet (no we were not smart enough to take off their shoes) but they continued on their merry way. the feet splashing quickly turned into full-on jumping in the water. they were shrieking and squealing with delight, so we were obviously not going to stop them.

the jumping quickly led to kneeling then sitting in the water. it was awesome.

in the meantime doc was chasing the ducks and maggie was close behind. he almost got one.

after the water episode they begged to play on the playground, so of course we obliged then carried their wet bodies back to the car and stripped them naked for the car ride home.

after a bath at home they ran all around the house with towels on their heads shouting "super cape". they were being silly and having so much fun then went to play in riley's room. i was putting my feet up on the couch while martha started a load of laundry. i heard them playing in riley's room and both martha and i remember having a vague thought of "i wonder if henry needs a diaper on?". next thing i know i hear riley say, "henry, is that your poop?" she then says, "you better go tell your mom". at this point i start shouting for martha while i race to riley's room. we both get there right as maggie is about to eat henry's big poop on the floor. martha takes maggie and i take henry into the bathroom and proceed to clean him up.

somehow the combination of martha & i and our two children together always leads to lots of chaos and disaster. but not bad disaster, just funny craziness. we always wonder what other moms think of us when they see us with our crazy and dis-shelved children. oh well, at least we have lots of laughs!

this last picture is un-related, but just about sums up my daughter. we were hanging out in the backyard friday afternoon after lunch and i was sitting on the patio and riley was playing. she loves to lay on this little ball crawl thing we have. i asked her to come over to me, and her reply was, "no mommy, i can't, i'm resting".

Sunday, July 18, 2010

this last week...

~ here is my 31 week picture taken last tuesday. i will be 32 weeks this tuesday - hooray! the baby is head down now and i feel like the countdown has begun. although i would like the next 8 weeks to go by rather quickly, i do think how nice i have it right now and get rather sad thinking about riley and i's era coming to an end. change is coming and i'm not sure i'm quite ready for it. riley is excited though and has been talking more and more about her baby sister and asks over and over again if she'll be able to hold her and if she'll be heavy or not. she also told us today that she was going to teach her things that were hot, like the oven. glad she's got that one covered.

~ last tuesday we went to seattle to see my youngest sister sarah swim. she is an incredible swimmer and that night she placed 1st in all 4 of her events. she is long & lean and so fun to watch swim. awesome job sarah!

~ my friend stephanie invited a few of us over for a happy hour/pool party last wednesday. it was another hot day so it was perfect. we soaked up the sun and watched all our kids play in the yard. between 5 of us gals we realized we had every single age covered, all the way from in utero to age 8.

~ last week proved to be a very challenging week with riley's behavior. i think between being too busy and not enough sleep, as well as possibly just a lovely toddler phase, riley was completely out of sorts. as most of you know, she is extremely intense, emotional & knows exactly what she wants in every situation. i keep telling myself these traits will pay off in the long run, but as a toddler they create some challenging situations for me. she would meltdown over anything and everything, threw countless tantrums and screaming fits and was nasty to her friends (mainly annika, sorry...). one of her screaming sessions lasted 45 minutes and she was choking she was screaming and crying so hard. i wondered if i should shut my windows for fear of what the neighbors were thinking. i managed to stay calm through all of it and rewarded myself with naps and baking. for me baking is very relaxing and at the end of an exhausting day, it is just what both of us needed. and of course at that point i wasn't going to argue about whether she could lick the spoon or not, even though it was 5:30. some things just aren't worth it

~ we also just wrapped up 2 weeks of swim lessons, but i will post those pictures in a separate post. here's to a good, sunny week!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

backyard fun

on tuesday my long-time friend kristen drove up from seattle with her 2 boys evan & miles. we have 2 mutual friends here in bellingham - kari & kelley - so all of us ladies and our children got together for an afternoon of lunch, sun & lots of water play for the kids.

ayda, annika & riley in the sprinkler

annika & riley trying to lick the water

miles & riley

annika & riley would run through the sprinkler then jump in the baby pool

miles loved the hose and at one point we all looked over and he had it to his mouth and was drinking from it

thanks for the really great afternoon...

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

the 4th

we had a nice long 3-day holiday weekend. it was full of bbq's, house projects, yard work, a massage for me, bike ride, friends and lots of lounging.

we spent the evening of the 4th at kyle and kari's house, along with a few other friends. all of the food was amazing and i think all of us completely stuffed ourselves. we just kept eating and eating and eating. well, especially me since drinking was not an option :)

we did lots of our own fireworks then watched the downtown fireworks on the front lawn. riley managed to stay up until 9:30 or so then practically begged to go bed- something that never happens. i think the intensity of all the fireworks did her in. i was very proud of her though- she is very sensitive to loud noises and was so brave and pretty fascinated by all the fireworks. i did spend several days leading up to the 4th prepping her for the loud noises and talking about fireworks. it seemed to really pay off.

i found riley & annika in kari's raspberry bush

riley, annika & bjorn with the sparklers

i taught riley to cover her ears around loud noises - she takes this job very seriously

kyle with our 2 huge boxes of fireworks

watching the fireworks in the street

riley is very serious about holding her sparkler

and this about sums up our night: complete & total indulgence

thanks for the fun party kyle & kari!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

family photos

about a month ago our little family met with a photographer on a sunny afternoon and had a photo session. i bought the session last fall at an auction but wanted to wait until i was pregnant to use it. i always feel a bit cheesy when doing pictures, but it's usually worth the effort and the sometimes awkward moments. (like when she asked tyler and i to stand and look into e/o eyes while she took pictures...who gazes into their spouses eyes in front of an audience?!)

we were definitely pleased with how the pictures turned out, and of course i love the ones of riley the best. it's fun to do pregnancy shots, but also not so fun...pregnancy is not my best look so embrace my puffiness :)

and speaking of pregnancy, i am t-h-i-r-t-y weeks today. 10 to go and i really think it will be an all out battle to get to the end. i am positive i will be completely gigantic come september. i am not feeling all the whimsical feelings i had when pregnant with riley. it is hard being pregnant while parenting a toddler. however, i am grateful i feel so good, it's just becoming more and more awkward to do everything i want to and my poor little puffy feet are so tired by dinnertime. i love feeling my little girl move though and am getting more and more excited to meet her.

these are my favorite photos...