Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Snow pals

Here are some fun photos from last night, when Asher FINALLY got to go outside to play in the snow. It's been hard to get him outside when it's just us during the day, because it's really too cold for Rhylah -- and by the time Nate gets home, it's usually dark. So Gabe was kind enough to take his little brother out into the snowy day and show him the ropes of snowplay ... including snow angles, snowballs, and sleds.

Friday, December 14, 2007

The first of many laughs

"When the first baby laughed for the first time, the laugh broke into a thousand pieces, and they all went skipping about. And that was the beginning of faries."
James Barrie (author of Peter Pan)

Can you imagine being able to pinpoint the exact moment in time when laughter first entered your life?
For Rhylah, the moment occurred last night, as Nathan and I were cooing at her and she was copying the sounds ... each copycat sound accompanied by something closer and closer to a chuckle until the sound sort of gurgled up out of her in a short chortle ... followed by a shocked look on her face as her daddy and I cheered rather loudly. I think maybe we scared her, so I hope she's not afraid to laugh again sometime!

In other news, little miss Rhy has graduated to 3-6 month clothes (sniff!) and is growing before our very eyes! She's also sleeping for 8 hour stretches about every other night. Which is WONDERFUL! It's getting to the point now that a midnight feeding is a rare thing indeed. We feed her a bottle of formula at about 10 p.m. and she's been sleeping until about 6 a.m., at which point she snoozes between me and Nathan on her "princess" pillow, to keep her elevated and out of harm's way (not that I'm really sleeping anymore, at that point!) I've come to adore these morning snuggles, even though she doesn't always fall back asleep, and spends most of the time cooing at me or batting me in the face with her small fists.
My new nickname for the little lady is "princepecia," (prince-ah-pay-cha) which she seems to like. I think I heard it a long time ago when watching "Life is Beautiful," strangely enough. Anyway, it's Italian for "princess," and she certainly is the princess of our household!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Photo Shoot

We had our Xmas card photo shoot last night ... (yes, we are indeed behind schedule, but don't remind me, or I will panic!!) and these are some photos we took of Rhylah and me ... and one that I took of Rhylah and her daddy, in Nathan's improvised studio in our living room, with lights and the whole sheebang! I especially love the shot of her and Nathan, and the expression on her face. She seems to KNOW she has daddy wrapped around her little finger.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

First Shopping expedition

Rhylah and I had our first shopping trip together today ... grandma came too! :) Rhylah got spoiled rotten by grandma! I was also so excited to find her Xmas dress, which has been out of stock online, at the giant Children's Place outlet mall here in St. Charles! Here she is doing a fashion show after the shopping trip! The whole outfit, (velvet jumper, onesie AND hairbow) cost only $19!! Now that's a great deal! The other photo is of Rhylah missing her daddy.... he's back home shoveling snow in Wisconsin. We love you daddy!! And Gabriel!!!

Monday, November 26, 2007


This photo was a great moment in the game when a KU player had some lovely golden Mizzou tiger grass, from the endzone, stuck in his helmet. Eat that!!!!

It's a memorable moment in history ... Missouri is ranked No. 1 in the nation in the newest BCS football standings. For those of you who are out of the loop, my alma mater was finally on prime time television this past weekend -- tearing it up against KU! They beat 'em, of course, and are going on to play Oklahoma in the Big 12 championship this coming weekend. In the meantime...as we Mizzou natives like to say .... Rock chalk chicken hawk, &^%$# KU!" Wahoo!!

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Tree Time

We realized on Friday that almost all our weekends in December are crazy busy, so we took some rare free time this weekend to go get our Christmas tree! We looked around for awhile, but in the end, came back to the very first tree we saw -- and loved. Grandview Tree farm is a tradition with us now. They have acres of trees to explore and a free ornament and hot cider when you're done!

Here is Gabe with the tree saw. He was sooooo excited!

My boys with our tree!

Mr. Asher

A photo opp.... wreaths set up so you can stick your head through... Gabe was a little short!

Ash guzzles cider in the giftshop after a chilly tree hunt!

Rhylah poses in her super cute new hat, knit by my good friend Jamie!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

First Snow...

We're getting our first snow as I type this.
It's a wet snow, and not a lot of it, so it probably won't last the night... still...the grass is nearly covered and I think that it counts! In honor of this Turkey Day Eve snowfall, I'd like to pay one last homage to fall, my favorite season, which doesn't last nearly long enough here in Wisconsin.

This was the view down Bell Avenue last week. It's my favorite fall street. I suppose when you live in a place long enough to identify your favorite seasonal streets in various parts of the neighborhood, that must make you an official native. I LOVE the trees on this street ... maples I think??? They always turn a bright yellow... all at the same time, creating a canopy -- a virtual yellow tunnel, which you MUST drive through, even if it's not the direction you should be driving at all. It's magnificent. Last week Monday, I was on my way to the doctor's office, when I passed by and had to take a picture. The leaves were falling like yellow snow -- heaping up on car windshields and in haphazard drifts on the ground. It was a glorious late-fall moment.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

World's first pirate baptism

We had our pirate themed birthday/baptism event today! And all in all, things went pretty well! Things that did not go well include a short, but memorable list: A) Roxy pretty much tried to EAT through our basement door while we were at church, creating a monumental mess that we discovered as guests were arriving at our house after church ... B) Asher decided to take a swim in the baptismal font at our church before the baptism (which we did after church, with just family and friends present, thank goodness!!), going completely in and getting soaked in the process ... hmmmm.... perhaps he's part Baptist instead of Lutheran??? and C) Nathan's ultimate masterpiece, the pirate cake, collapsed while we were at church ... luckily, we had snapped photos of it before we left for chuch so I can show you what it looked like. We were pretty bummed out about it because it looked SOOOOOOO awesome! But we made do, by putting a stategically placed shark nearby and telling everyone that the ship had suffered a shark attack. Rhylah did great all day, sleeping the day away in various pairs of eager arms while mommy was able to partake of the wonderful feast that Nathan and our relatives had prepared .... delicious potstickers, club sandwiches, chicken and beef satay with homemade peanut sauce and cucumber salad, various yummy fruit salads, Rueben dip with crackers .... cheesey potatoes ... I can't even begin to tell you how much I stuffed myself! All worth it!!!

Here are the photos, which tell the story better! :)

Here's our family at the baptism. Note Asher's outfit ... luckily, one of the guests had bought him clothes for his birthday present and was able to save the day by giving him something to wear after he fell into the baptismal font! Otherwise, the little man would have attended his sister's baptism in a diaper and nothing else!

Here is the wonderful cake in its glory hours....my favorite part is the cannonballs made of whoppers and the cannons on the side of the ship made of rollos.

Here is the ship after the "shark attack" and the unfortunate collapse...

Asher takes a sword to the pirate pinata.

The pinata, after the bashing...

Abbie, Gabriel and Seth ... fellow cousins and scalawags ... show their pirate spirit by dressing in pirate gear at the end of the evening.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Peas in a pod

I love this photo of Nathan and Rhylah... too cute! Rhy and her daddy are the best of friends. I think that if she was able to ask for a pony, we'd be in real trouble! Daddy wouldn't be able to say no!

Here she is! Can you tell that she's putting on a little more baby fat? We give her formula just before bed now and she's been sleeping for 6 hours straight! Yay!!!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Last harvest

The easiest way to get at the sprouts is to tip the plant over and rip the leaves off.

Here you can see the sprouts up close -- they are very tricky to snap off the plant at times!

Here is Roxy, grinning at the me from where the tomato plants used to be -- she's excited about all the leftovers. YUCK!

Not everything is dead in my garden! I still have French Taragon, Parsley, Thyme, Rosemary .... and check out the size of my Mint! Considering the current cost of fresh mint in the supermarket, I figure this bush is worth a couple hundred dollars! Now I just need to get off my butt and cut, dry and crush it!

After spending a busy afternoon yesterday sorting out the kids' upstairs closets (Asher's closet, in Gabe's room, which used to be our backup storage closet, is now emptied and ready for the little man's clothes! Yahoo! This was a HERCULEAN task!) I decided to tackle the garden. The plants were all brown, withered versions of their former selves, which always makes me kind of sad -- so I tend to put this task off at the end of the season. But the Brussels sprouts needed a final harvest, so Gabriel and I went outside into the chilly afternoon -- a perfect, cloudy, cold fall day! Now Brussels sprouts might sound gross to some, but I LOOOOVE the ones that we grow! First of all, they are smaller (therefore, sweeter) ... mini versions of the large ones you buy in the store. Second, they are fresh. Third, they are marvelous when chopped all up and sauteed with some butter and salt. YUM! I spent over an hour bent over, pulling these little buggers off the plants yesterday -- it's pretty rough on your back and your fingers, but I had a huge bowl to show for my efforts when I was done. I still have four plants to go, but I'll get around to that sometime today! Afterwards, Gabe helped me rip out the dead tomatoe plants, eggplants, cabbage and sunflowers. And of course, Roxy had fun chewing on the dead veggies and brown plants. Ewwwww.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

All tied up

Yesterday, Rhylah gave me a funny look, with very wide eyes. I could almost hear her future teenaged voice saying "I can't believe mom just embarassed me in PUBLIC!!" The funny thing is, I have absolutely NO idea what was making her so amazed ... perhaps the funky chandelier in our diningroom... I snapped her picture before this priceless expression could disappear.

Gabriel, the shoe-tying champ!

Have shoes, will travel!!

While getting ready for our nephews birthday party this morning, I heard a shout from downstairs. "I did it! I tied my shoe!!" Yes, ladies and gentlemen, Mr. Gabriel tied his own shoe this afternoon. Granted, he did it in a somewhat backward way, basically tying a knot and then sticking the ends in and through to make the bunny ears, but it has the idential appearance to a regular tie, and I could not tell the difference until he explained how he did it. I suppose it's only a matter of time till he does it the good old fashioned way ... (remember the good old rhyme about bunny ears and going around the tree??). The other photo is just a funny one I took of Rhy yesterday. She was looking at me with the most wide-eyed, astonished expression. It made me laugh so hard, and then it made me grab my camera ... I couldn't resist. I'm sure this isn't the last astonished, freaked-out look I will get from my daughter!

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Heads up

Here is a photo of Rhylah lifting her head to look at Nathan. What a girl! She was really proud of herself, I could tell! :) The other photo is a picture of my new haircut. Nathan snapped it this morning when I got home from the salon after I enjoyed a few, relaxing kid free hours!

Monday, November 05, 2007

Miss Rhy turns 1 ... month

Here are some photos in honor of my sugar pie's one month birthday! Enjoy!

Gabriel and Rhy: Photo was taken after school this afternoon.

Rhylah is one month old! She's growing up so fast! :)

This is just a photo that I like of her sleeping.

Rhy gets some tummy time on the carpet while the house is quiet ... Ash is sleeping and Gabe is at school ... a rare moment of peace!!

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Meez Fun

My sister talked me into doing a Meez. (see the cartoon on the margin of this page) Check it out at www.meez.com. It's basically a website that allows you to create a cartoon version of yourself, doing fun stuff. Just for kicks, I made one of Nathan too, and put it below mine. I was bored today, so this was a fun thing to do! :)

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

My little Trick-or-treaters

Here are my little trick-or-treaters this year! Aren't they too cute?? Okay, I know, I'm biased ... but there's nothing like the sight of your youngest son waddling around the neighborhood in fake dreds ... the only thing cuter is when that same son later got a sucker stuck in the dreds, creating a moment of near panic the likes of which Jack Sparrow certainly never endured. And I'm super proud of Ninja Turtle Gabriel as well. He was sooooo excited about his costume and he did such a great job of staying in character, as you can tell from his pose for the camera. We only lasted about an hour at trick-or-treating, and then it was home for some warm soup, apple cider, and the grand "Candy dump" so that mom and dad could check to make sure everything was safe and the boys could survey their loot.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

The finished product

Here are this year's batch of pumpkins! Nate's is the spider, mine is the Halloween tree, Gabe's is the pirate ship and Asher's is the trick-or-treating monster. I carved the little one with Rhylah's name. We had a great time carving them up -- and even toasted the pumpkin seeds with a little salt and butter. YUM! What fun!