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Showing posts from August, 2014

Baby Sibling

Until the last week or so Elinore has wanted a little sister, or so she says.  I'm not sure she knows what she's asking for yet, or if she just knows sister because she is a sister.  But this last week or so she's started talking about wanting a baby boy. 

The boys are still somewhat dividing with one wanting a brother and the other a sister.  Depending on the day which wants which changes though!


Early in week 26 of this pregnancy, I started to be able to see some movement from baby inside!  It's an exciting development!

Clothes on!

Keith normally doesn't sleep in much more than his boxers.  I've never thought it was that unusual and no one is the house is bothered by it, until Elinore that is. 

When Elinore gets up in the mornings Keith or I go and get her.  If it's me, she usually asks "Daddy here?"  and after a quick diaper change we'll go find him sleeping in bed.  Sometimes she'll tickle him or play or snuggle with him and sometimes she just wants breakfast.  Either way, as soon as he's getting our of bed she insists "clothes on!" 

If Keith goes to get her, sometimes he'll humor her and put shirt on first, but then she wants to know where his pants are!  More often he goes without a shirt and she insists on "clothes on!"

Kitten Play

The boys, Caleb especially, have been really into spy toys lately.  They've been saving money and buying them over the last 6 months or so.  One of the spy toys has a little laser light on it that points out. 

They have found a new favorite way to play with this toy.  They point the laser light on the floor and move it all around while Elinore chases it. 

Apparently they like to play with their little sister like she's a cat.

Frozen Sing-a-long

Caden is continuing his fascination with the music from Frozen.  We rarely go on a car ride where we doesn't request it.  (Caleb on the other hand is over it and doesn't want to listen, which don't worry, we get it bud!)  Caden has really continued to learn the words too.  As we're driving along he's singing along word for word to nearly every track.  And he's not shy about it in the car with us!


Now that I'm finished with my graduate school work, I have this great sense of relief in the evenings at home.  I didn't realize how much it added until it was gone.  My evenings feel less rushed and less stressed because I'm home earlier, I'm not leaving for classes, and I don't have homework looming over my head.  It's an awesome feeling! 

I still question wether pursuing my degree was the right thing for my time over the last 3 years, but I'm glad to say it's done.

Caleb's Loose Teeth

Caleb lost half a tooth probably close to 3 months ago now.  The other half of that tooth and at least one more are also loose.  However, he protects his loose teeth like gold.  Should anything bump his tooth and cause any speck of blood, he runs to grab a tissue or a paper towel to hold the tooth still and stop the bleeding.  I'm convinced he's just putting that tooth back in place to it stays longer.  He almost never wiggles them.  He even has a grown up tooth growing in behind one of his loose teeth, and he doesn't care, he doesn't want to have them fall out.  It might hurt he says.

First Day of School - 2014

Caden and Caleb are off to second grade! Elinore is not ready for school, but had her share of "me too!" comments for photos.  She likes telling them goodbye and watching them get on the bus!

Back of the Bus

Since the boys started school on the 20th, they have come home talking about how they were going to sit in the back of the bus with the neighbor girl.  They had plans to get there and wanted to get on the bus to get to the back! 

I remember being a kid, there was always something cool about the back of the bus.  I have no idea why now, but it was usually reserved for older kids.  You were further away from the driver I suppose and had more "privacy." 

When they got on the bus the second morning for school at least there were already two boys in the very back of the bus, but there were several empty seats in front of them, so you can believe that's where my boys went!

I Big Girl

Just this week for the first time I've heard Elinore start to say "I big girl!"  The first time I noticed she was climbing into one of her brother's chairs at the dinning room table. 

This morning she also shared that she was a big girl when she tried to crawl into the car and sit in her brother's seat too.

Incline Fascinations

The boys really enjoyed the incline railroad in Pittsburgh.  So much so they have both made replicas since we've been home.  Caleb made a Lego incline car.  Caden made a incline train track and train with his Thomas set and a plastic tub lid in his bedroom. 

Riding the incline wasn't as bad as I thought it would be.  It certainly wasn't my favorite, but I'm glad we took them on it.  It is one of the few things they are still talking about and replicating.


I was a little nervous heading into this year's vacation for the kids and I to Pittsburgh.  I thought it was going to be exhausting and tiring and hard work.  I didn't come back from Boston refreshed.  I mean we had a great time and I'm so glad we were able to experience that city, but it was tiring.  In part because Elinore wasn't sleeping well at all while we were there. 

I was so anxious about it Keith and I talked that if it was hard and tiring and wasn't going well, that I could drive home early and go back and pick him up the end of the week since it was just Pittsburgh and so close to home.

I was so relieved that this wasn't the case at all! 

Elinore slept well.  We didn't stay up late because we were sleeping in the same room as the kids, so when they went to sleep, we did too.  Because it was only 2 hours from home I didn't feel the pressure to cram everything in during the week, we could always come back.  Although I don't think we will, w…

Friends, Shopping, Home, Vacation Day 8

Our last day of the trip we got an early start.  I sat an alarm and got up and got ready to go before the rest of the family was awake.  Then I started waking them up to get ready to go too.  We hit the road only about 20 minutes later than I had wanted.  By 8:20 we were on the road to the Ligonier, PA Farmers Market to meet up with my friend Claire.  Her family has a stand at the market and she was going to be there for the morning.  We met up with her for 'breakfast,' or we were supposed to but the kids I couldn't make it that long without eating so we stopped at Dunkin' Donuts. 

It was awesome to spend a couple hours with Claire and her boyfriend catching up.  I hadn't seen her in about 4 years, so that was a great time!

Then we hit the road again to head to Grove City, PA to their outlet mall to get some school shopping for the kids done.  You know, us an about 2349827423 other parents and kids.  We skipped trying clothes on at The Children's Place it was s…

Zoo, Vacation Day 7

We spent out last day in the city at the Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium.  When we were talking with folks about our upcoming trip, many people recommended the zoo.  I then assumed that it was going to be awesome.  I would say it wasn't that awesome.  Keith and I both agreed we were just as happy with Cleveland.  There were only two things we liked better.  There were 4 cheetahs out and there were many gorillas, including a baby gorilla.  That was really neat.   Otherwise it was unimpressive.  We finished there much earlier than I had expected.

Which left us some time to go to IKEA!  I'd never been, but wanted to try it out.  Keith went along with us and we checked it out.  While the only thing we purchased was an umbrella, we're glad we went.  We have some great ideas for our bathroom remodel and saw some things we really liked!  We've talked ourselves into the remodeling it on our own to save money and we found some super small sink and vanity sets there that we re…

Brief Walking Tour, Vacation Day 6

Thursday morning started even slower than normal.  Keith had a late class to start, so he slept in (until 8!), which meant the kids slept later than usual too since he wasn't waking us up getting ready.  Happy faces all around here!  The kids and I headed out in the late morning.  This day we were walking mostly, no car for us!

We started by walking down underneath the convention center Keith's been in all week.  As we drove by it we could see a walkway and a fountain the kids have been interested in, so we walked out our hotel and down.  The fountain was really cool.  It was a peaceful waterfall with a winding walkway down to the river.  We followed the walkway on the river all the way down to Point State Park Fountain.  The boys have been itching to see it up close since we've seen it from many different angles across the river.  They've even argued with me MANY times over which side of the river it was on.  The day before, they spent telling me it was on the other s…


Keith and I have both noticed lately how much more Elinore's language was developed.  I especially noticed on vacation that when she says words, she goes to the trouble to make sure she gets it right.  Sometimes she's talking slower to get it out more clearly.  It's awesomely adorable.

Friends & Duck Tour, Vacation Day 5

Today was a much less planned day.  I didn't have a plan for the day other than to meet up with some friends and family in the area.  We spent the morning swimming in the hotel pool.  One of Keith's co-worker's family is here too, and we ran into his wife and kids at the pool for a little bit too.  The kids got a little wild at other kids they knew being around. 

Then we cleaned up and headed to meet Kristin for lunch.  We went to a pizza buffet for lunch before taking them down the street to an elementary school playground for some kids play time.  The boys weren't too interested in it though and Elinore was tired.  We were there until it started sprinkling and then we headed back to the car. 

Then I had to figure out something else for us to do before we headed to meet cousin Jared for dinner.  The kids have been wanting to take the Just Ducky Tour here, so I thought maybe this would be a good chance to go get tickets for it.  Driving there though was a little rough…

Pittsburgh Children's Museum, Vacation Day 4

Tuesday morning we decided we'd continue our slow morning routine of cereal in the room, Google planning our day and getting ready.  We spent this day at the Children's Museum because it was supposed to be about 90 degrees outside, and I didn't want to be outside in that all day!

We got to the museum about 15 minutes after it opened, and the drive there was pretty easy.  We spent the day there until it was almost closing time.  The drive back to the hotel afterwards was a little bit more interesting.  There's a Pirates game in town tonight, so the way we came was closed off and there was more traffic for the game.  But I think I did okay and it didn't take too much longer to get back, so I consider that a win!

Anyway, back to our day at the museum.  The kids had a lot of free play and had a good time.  I wasn't as thrilled with the museum as I had hoped.  I was comparing it to our experience at the Boston Children's Museum last year, and I liked Boston bett…

Random Things from Vacation

As if trying to drive the streets of Pittsburgh wasn't a difficult enough task on its own, Elinore has decided she doesn't like sitting at red lights.  As we sit at red lights, she sits in the back seat and says "ready! ready! ready!"  Awesome.

The first two or three days we spent in Pittsburgh, the weather app I use on my phone registered two Pittsburgh locations and constantly showed me two snapshot weather reports of Pittsburgh.  They never matched either.  In fact, at one point there was a 5-6 degree difference.  There was also a difference in the rain and storm factor during Sunday's thunderstorm.  One said light showers (it was clearly a downpour) and the other said severe storm warning.

We relax in the mornings getting ready and eating cereal in the hotel room.  As we do that we turn on PBS cartoons.  While the kids enjoy them, Elinore doesn't understand why when Daniel Tiger comes on he goes away so quickly after the commercial.  She gets excited ever…

Carnegie Science Center, Vacation Day 3

On day 3 of vacation, Keith headed off to a day of learning at his conference.  So the kids and I did some Google research and decided to head to the Carnegie Science Center for the day.  Keith and I had been before 6 or so years ago, and I knew I wanted to take the kids this week, so why not now?

We got to the museum just a half hour it opened and stayed until closing.  The kids seem to really enjoy it!  The boys really enjoying building with the blue blocks in the building section.  They weren't terribly interested in the space stuff, but they liked the robots.  Elinore even impersonated the robot, which was terribly amusing!  We went to the planetarium and saw a Sesame Street show!  The boys thought it was neat, and Elinore sure likes Elmo, so that was neat!  There were a couple times she got anxious or scared in there though and started to cry, but a slightly tighter hold and some reassurance from mom fixed that.  The second time though, she was asking for Daddy!

We had a late…

Natural History Museum & Eats, Vacation Day 2

Sunday, day 2 of vacation, was another day with Keith!  We did have to check him into his conference during the afternoon, but we did get the whole day with him, which was nice.  We started with a lazy morning in our hotel while a nice thunderstorm raged outside!  We left in the storm, stopped at a CVS for some groceries for the week, and then drove around to park to eat at Pamela's.  We were fortunate enough to be able to meet a good friend of mine from college who happened to be in town the same time we were for a wedding!  It was awesome to catch up and meet her boyfriend and spend breakfast together.  I haven't seen her in about 5 and a half years, so it was great. 

Getting there and parked was an adventure for Keith and his driving.  The one way roads here and the parking is crazy to navigate for us.  We almost turned in a bus lane going the wrong way for cars, and Caleb, being so smart in the back seat goes "Dad, you're not a bus!"

Brunch was delicious tho…

Idlewild Park & Storybook Forest, Vacation Day 1

Back about 4 years ago, Keith and i took the kids on our first family vacation as a family of 4.  We had a great time and have talked about re-visiting some of our stops from back then.   This year we had the opportunity to revisit Idlewild Park.

Keith is attending a conference this year that is located in Pittsburgh for a week.  (The same one that gave us the opportunity to travel to Boston last year.) 

Saturday morning we headed out and drove to the park.  We spent the day there before heading back into Pittsburgh to check into our downtown hotel for the night.  We had a great day!

I bought out tickets in advance online, which they said to pull up on my phone to check it.  What I didn't know was that there is very limited cell phone reception in the park to me able to pull up the tickets!  So we spent our first bit visiting with guest services and stuff so they could pull up our information.  (The lack of service also made my cell phone battery die during our day in the park to…

Hold you!

The other night Elinore and I went to Target to grab the boys school supplies and a swimsuit for me for vacation.  She's not a big fan of riding in the carts anymore, but she's also not a reliable walker to stick with you.  I usually have her ride for awhile, and she does okay as long as you're moving, but once you start stopping, she's not a fan!  After awhile she'd had enough of it in the cart and wanted held, so she would ask me "hold you? Hold you?!" 

How adorable is that?  You hold me?  Hehe, funny.  But you're so sweet!  She's been asking more now too. 

After that, I let her walk around with me as we were finishing up.  By walk, I mean she runs, and I try to keep up.  Mostly she does a lot of running back and forth from one point to another without making a lot of forward progress!  However, if you move to the tile floor from the carpeted clothing section at Target, she's not a fan.  She wouldn't walk on the tile, but she would run…

Craft Day

Yesterday was craft day at day care for Elinore. She made this squirrel. I may be biased, but I think it's one of the cutest squirrels ever!