Monday, June 28, 2010

Fairystone State Park

For as long as I can remember, my family has been gathering at Fairystone State Park to celebrate Father's Day.  This is my grandfather.  We call him Popeye.  This is my mom's father.  I am so grateful to him for the Godly heritage he has passed down to my family.  

We always had a great time at Fairystone as kids, hanging out with our cousins and playing in the water.  It is really fun to bring Madeline and Oliver now.  And they LOVED the water.  Oliver had no fear and would just crawl on in until his face was under the water.

And Madeline got a new float/ring that she took out in the water.  It helped her to be so brave.  She had a great time.  

We enjoyed lounging around for the day, 

and enjoying company with our family.  Oliver liked all the attention from the ladies (even if they were his cousins.)

We enjoyed a little science when my cousin found a funny caterpillar on her towel.  

The things that look like eyes aren't really his eyes.  His head is the little "light gray" part sticking out on the bottom.  Apparently he is a Tiger Swallowtail Caterpillar almost ready to pupate (I don't think I like that word).  At least, that is what Google told me.  
Here is where I throw in a plug for my cousin, Christopher.  He's the really awesome drummer for a band called, Runaway City.   

You should go check out their new album, Armored Hearts.  It's really good.  And if you like it too, then you should purchase it so that he doesn't have to comb the beaches with a metal detector...

to get 59 cents to support his new wife.  This is the end of my plug for my cool drummer cousin.  

We had a great time at Fairystone this year. 

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Father's Day Projects

When I told Madeline that we were going to go to Michael's to find something to make for daddy for Father's Day, her only two requests were hearts and glitter.  So, we searched for the perfect Father's Day project involving hearts and glitter.  

Once we found it, we came home to make it.  I told Madeline that we could do it as soon as Oliver went down for his nap.  I've never seen her more excited to do something.   She kept asking and asking if it was time for his nap.  She said, "I will be so happy when he goes to sleep."  I asked, "Are you not happy now."  She matter-of-factly said, "no."  

He finally fell asleep and she could hardly wait to break into the paints.  She chose the colors yellow, green and blue and worked very carefully to paint the colors on thoroughly.  I thought it would be a pretty splotchy paint job.  But, I believe I am seeing a bit of a perfectionist shine through.  Is this a first child thing?  Because, as the baby, I am definitely not a perfectionist.  

She was a little concerned about the paint on her fingers.  But, we worked through it.  

Then she added the beloved glitter, sometimes called "farkles" around here (not sure why she can't say her "sp"s).  She poured it on and I showed her how to dump it back off.  We had green farkles and yellow farkles and blue farkles.  Actually, we still have farkles, mostly the blue for some reason, stuck all over the kitchen table.  It's pretty.  

After a little drying time, I got out my trusty glue gun, added a glob of glue on the back of the hearts and she placed them where she wanted them on the picture frame.  And TA-DA! we have a Father's Day present with hearts and glitter.  She really did it all herself (except for the glue gun and a little bit of extra blue paint to help the glitter stick since it was already drying.)  It may have been a little better if I had found an actual picture to put in it.  Oh well, it is ready to go to work and be admired by all the other jealous daddies.

And we didn't forget about Oliver.  He said he wanted to do something with hearts too.  But, definitely no glitter.  That was too girly.

So, he got to do what any boy would want to do.  Walk in a mold of wet cement.  (Actually girls like to do it too.  I seem to remember getting in trouble for walking through the freshly laid cement foundation of the house next to me when I was little.  It is so irresistible.)   

So, these are our Father's Day projects for 2010.  

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Don't Judge Me

Last Friday, I was trying to finish packing to go out of town for the weekend and Oliver was into everything.  He had pulled his night light out of the socket, opened the TV cabinet, opened the fireplace doors and pulled a lamp over on the floor.  I just needed a few minutes to finish packing without Oliver's life being in jeopardy.  So, I turned on a sign language video for him.  And he sat like this for the entire 30 minute video.  Seriously.  He didn't move.  Well, except for the time he fell over backwards (which would usually cause a little whimper) and just continued laying there.  I got all the packing finished and he probably has a few less bruises on his forehead for the time being.  It was a win - win situation.  So, like I said, don't judge me.  

Monday, June 21, 2010

Happy Father's Day

Happy Father's Day to the love of my life.  Andrew is the best father in the world.  He loves these two with a selfless love.  He would do anything for them.  Even give up his Saturday mornings to play with them so I can sleep in.  (Ok, maybe that's for me.  But, that's why I love him.)

He is so fun, energetic and ready for any adventure with them.  They are going to have the best childhoods because of him. Thank you, Andrew, for being so wonderful!  

Happy Father's Day to my dad and Andrew's dad as well.  We love our father's so much for their Godly heritage, support, wisdom and for being such wonderful grandfathers.  

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Jesus Loves Me

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Oliver and the Stairs

Oliver had a great time on the stairs the other night.  I was trying to teach him how to come down the steps.    It made him giggle so much.

And just to explain Madeline's funny laugh (it isn't her real laugh, thank goodness), we told her that we have videos of her laughing on the steps when she was little.  She used to throw balls down the steps and it made her crack up.  So, she went and found some balls to throw down the steps and laugh.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Leave It To Beaver

We went on a little walk today around the lake.  Madeline has not been scarred from her practice baptism yesterday and was happy to get outside.  I thought I was happy about getting outside before I got outside.  The heat is one thing.  But, those pesky little bugs are the most annoying thing ever.  Maybe even more than being asked "why?" 43,938,392 times a day.  I am regretting my decision to not buy the Off Fan with 3 refills this weekend at Sam's Club.  

Anyways, these toes were cute enough to get my mind off of the bugs for a second.  

And Madeline didn't seemed bothered by them or by the choice of brown fall shoes with athletic socks that she made before she left.  I know you may be asking where her rain boots are.  They are still wet from yesterday's incident.  

The really cool thing about our walk today was that we found a beaver family.  Not the Leave It to Beavers, but an actual beaver, as in rodent, family.  See?  

I knew you probably couldn't see because I didn't have my zoom lens with me today.  So, I labeled the picture for you to help you out.  There was a mommy with 2 babies.  They could have been nursing.  But, I think they were sleeping (since Beaver's are nocturnal).  There was also a daddy beaver.  It was the cutest thing.  I know you can't really tell in the picture.  But, I'm telling you... it was cute.  

For those of you that don't know much about beavers, here are a few facts for you:
~Besides the Capybara, beavers are the largest rodents in the world.
~Their babies are called  "kits".
~They paddle with their hind feet and use their tail as a rudder.  
~A family usually consists of a mom, dad and their last 2 litters.  
~They form monogamous bonds 
~It takes them about 20 minutes to cut down a 6 inch Aspen tree.
~They have fur lined lips that  close to form a seal behind their teeth, allowing them to hold their breath while they cut, peel, or carry branches underwater. 

All facts were found here.

I know, beavers are fascinating!  Really, they are!

Not Me Monday...

I did not go on a walk with our family around the lake yesterday and take a break to play on some rocks by the water.  I did not pretend to fish with sticks and talk to ducks. I did not hold Madeline's hand so that she would not fall in the water as she walked from rock to rock.  I did not let go for a minute and watch as Madeline tumbled into the water.  I really didn't let that happen...

...Andrew did :)

Saturday, June 12, 2010

7 Months Old

Oliver is now closer to a year than birth.  A little sad, but actually very fun.  

He is a great crawler now.  He has even perfected the bear crawl when he gets onto a floor that he doesn't like, like the bathroom.  He hadn't noticed the stairs until tonight.  But, he can go up them with no problem.  So, now we need lots of practice on coming down.  

He is very curious or some may say, into everything.  He is starting to leave the fireplace alone and has moved onto the electrical sockets.  He especially loves the nightlight in his room.  He follows me around while I am vacuuming and is trying to get into cabinets.  He gets a ton of bruises on his head from crawling or falling into things.  

I don't know why I even bother to put a blanket down for him.  It's not like he's going to stay on it.  

He can pull up on anyone and anything.  He is starting to let go and stand up for short amounts of time.  He can cruise between objects if they are very close together.  It is more of an extreme reach.  But, he is getting better at it.  Today I saw him walk behind a walker toy as it kept rolling ahead of him.  We are guessing that he will start walking before Madeline did.  But, time will tell.     

He had his first haircut this month.  He had all these incredibly long stray hairs.  So, he sat so nicely for mommy while I cut them.  

NOT!  But, I got most of the really long ones before it became extremely dangerous for me to hold sharp objects next to his head.  

As I mentioned earlier, he is done nursing.  He is drinking his bottles really well.  He usually drinks a bottle right before his naps or bedtime.  He is eating solids for breakfast, dinner and sometimes lunch depending on where we are.  He isn't eating his solids as aggressively as he did when we first started.  But, he is showing a lot of interest in our food.  He loves cheerios right now.  He got one in his mouth tonight.  But, usually he misses and they all fall in his lap.  So, we give him a hand.  He's still working on the fine motor thing.    

He is definitely enjoying his big sister.  And she loves him.  

But, he is mobile enough to get into her things now.  Madeline is quick to grab up her things and move them out of reach.

 We are enjoying our happy, busy, smily, giggly, mobile, drooling little boy. (Seriously, he goes though a bib in about 10-15 minutes.)  We love you Oliver! 

Friday, June 11, 2010


Our MOPS group had an outing to the Butterfly Gardens on Wednesday.  I went a couple of years ago with some of the same ladies.  It is crazy how much things have changed since then.  We have each added another child to our families.   I guess that's basically one change. 

Before you enter the greenhouse, the workers show you some of the caterpillars and cocoons.  Can you find the caterpillar?

This is a good chunk of the kiddos with us on the butterfly bench.  

The garden was filled with beautiful flowers (as most gardens are).

The kids had a great time running around finding all kinds of butterflies.  

Here is the allusive Atlas Moth.  Really I don't know if he is allusive, but he is gigantic.  Think, the size of your whole hand.  He was even furry.   

The beloved Monarch.

Oliver was a pretty good little fellow for most of the time.  But, towards the end, he wasn't feeling the whole butterfly thing anymore.  One even landed on him and all he wanted to do was squish it.  That butterfly doesn't even know how close it came to certain death.

Of course, Madeline was there to comfort her little brother.  

Madeline's buddy, the Butterfly Murderer.  But, we still like her lots!

All the girls needed to rest their feet after a while.  We took their hints and headed to Cici's Pizza for a yummy lunch.  
Check out our MOPS blog for more pictures of the day.