Tuesday, April 29



No, not computer hacking, hacking up a lung. We got back from Durham on Sunday evening and ever since I have been coughing like crazy! My chest is all congested and it is SO gross. So, ugh, I am sick again. I am thinking about going to the doctor tomorrow to see if I should be concerned about the lung issues. I must have run my body down last week in FL. We did A LOT.

Also I am back at Weight Watchers. I went yesterday and I had gained 3 lbs since I was last there 6 weeks ago. I really want to have a decent swimsuit body this summer and I could not find a suit to camouflage the breastline to mid-thigh area. So I am working on being ready for the pool when it opens on Memorial Day weekend.

Otherwise not much else going on here. Same old life. Will let you know if something interesting happens. I will leave you with a Leahism:

We are driving to my mom's for the first time this week.
Leah: Grammy, do you have chalk in your garage?
Mom: No, sweetie, I don't have a garage.
Leah: Where do you park your car?
Mom: I have a covered area where I can park. (My mom has a condo)
Leah thinks about this a few minutes.
Leah: Do you have a bathroom or do I have to go in the woods?

I guess if you don't have a garage, the chances are slim that there is a bathroom.

Thursday, April 24

There's no place like home


I really mean it! We had an awesome trip and saw so many people, but I could not have been happier to arrive at my home this evening. My house was neat thanks to my wonderful husband who bathed the kids and put them to bed. I am so exhausted!

Let's see...

Monday the girls and I went to tea with my mom and sisters. The place was so cute and the kids were really good. Here is a picture of us in the hats:

Then we went to Dunedin Causeway to watch the sunset.

Tuesday Audra and Isobel came up and we went to the playground.

After that we went out in my step-dad's boat with him, my mom, and my sisters. That was SO much fun. The water was a bit chilly but it got better as you get used to it. I was worried that Leah would not go near the water because of her fears of water in her face. Not only did she go in, she played and poured and dug and had a fabulous time. Both girls loved the boat and the wind. They slept hard that night. :)

My "cool" girl

Leah really liked the island

Mom and Carly, who is moving to Barcelona in a MONTH!

Lauren & Leah

Pops & Erin

Mike asked me yesterday when I got home if I would change anything about the trip now that it was over. He meant like would I make it shorter, only go to one city, etc. Honestly, as exhausting as it was, I wouldn't change a thing. We saw so many people, the girls got some real quality time with many family members and friends too, i got to see people I haven't seen in 2+ years. For what it was, the girls slept well and did not have any major meltdowns. So all in all a wonderful trip. I am not ready to do it again anytime soon, but is was great! :)

Sunday, April 20

Coast to Coast


The girls and I arrived safe and sound in Clearwater this afternoon. I won't recap the weekend again for you. If you are interested in what went down, check out Nikki's and Erica's entries.

Today we went to John Chestnut Park with Rhiannon and Ty. He is so ALL boy. He runs and jumps and climbs now. It is so weird because he looks EXACTLY the same, just more active. :) He followed Leah around a bit which was cute. Rhi and I got to visit (I forgot how much I enjoyed our talks when we would switch kids). It was a fun afternoon. Then we (my mom and I) took the girls to Chuck E Cheese. Leah had a blast. Erin only ate diced carrots and apples, goldfish, and bits of pizza instead of her baby food. I am thinking she is about done with it. Pops showed up for the last few minutes and followed us over to Grammy's house to hang out some more. He is SO good with kids Leah's age. Thanks, Pops, for entertaining my big girl so well.

As with Erica, all is quiet here. We have another few busy days ahead of us, so I better go get some rest while I can.

Friday, April 18

Sunny Florida!


We are here! On the flight here, Mike rode with the girls and I sat alone. Can you believe it? I convinced Mike that I would be riding by myself with the girls on the way home so he should get the experience on the way there. He did great with them, even getting Ern to nap a bit. Then, thanks to Keri, our ride to Melbourne was pleasant. Once we got to the Konicki house, the girls had a blast. Halle and Annabelle and Leah played and played. They climbed outside in the backyard, played in the ball pit, had a tea party, counted bears, drove Halle's mini-Mustang around the cul-de-sac, used sidewalk chalk, watched Alvin and the Chipmunks, etc.

After the kids were fairly settled, Nikki, Keri, and I went shopping. I only bought the necessities for our trip, but it was fun just hanging out with the girls. We got to stroll aroud Target with out Starbucks and catch up. I love those times...

Because Erin only napped 20 minutes all day, she had a rough night. Leah went to bed at 9ish, so she also had a rough night. It's almost annoying that my kids are so regulated, because when we do something out of the ordinary they have a hard time adjusting. Don't get me wrong, on a daily basis I LOVE it. I love knowing that I have at least 2 hours to myself each day after they go to bed. But they do NOT handle change well.

The plan for today is to go to Erica's house (she has a photo studio inside her house) to take pictures of the girls. I also know that we are having dinner over there too. Christina and her family and Liz & Ella are arriving today too. Leah will have so many kids to play wth, she won't know what to so with herself! And Erin can play NEXT to Corgan and Kaitlyn.

I am so happy to be here!

Tuesday, April 15

Erin Update


Keri posted about this and this and it made me realize that I have been meaning to post about these things too!

1) Erin is so much bigger than Leah was at this age. At 8 months, she is solidly in 6-12 month clothing (Old Navy) and 12 month shirts and pants (Target). Her footie PJs are 12 month too (Children's Place) but they are still a bit long. She can still fit in the 9 month Circo ones from Target, but I have lots of 12 month ones from Leah so she alternates. Anyway, Leah was wearing 12 month clothes when we moved here and all through that summer into the fall. I didn't buy her 18 month stuff until it got cool, close to her 18 month birthday. It is so odd to picture Leah walking around in the clothes that Erin is currently wearing to sit on her big ole tush. :)

2) I suspect that Erin has been signing "more" and "milk" to us, though not always in the correct context. She tends to sign "milk" when we are about to eat solids. I am trying to get her to sign "eat" then, but she is not getting that one yet. When she is eating her snacks (puffs, freeze dried fruits, baby goldfish, cheerios), she usually has one in each hand signing "more" by touching the snacks together. I think she is signing, so I cheer and encourage it.

3) Erin is a backwards crawler! She lays on her belly and pushes back with her hands. Her tush scrunches up in the air, then she readjusts her hands and pushes herself flat. She can go pretty far that way. She looks just like an inchworm going backwards.

Updated: 4) I forgot to mention that she turns the pages of her board books when we read together during our "go to sleep" routine. Erin gets two books before nap and two before bedtime. Some current favorites are: Just Like Daddy, Peek-A-Who, and the always classic Brown Bear. If I let go of the next page with my right hand so that it pops up, she will push it over to the other side. From my teaching days, I remember the first level of literacy is knowing how to hold a book and which way the pages go. My baby is on the path to literacy! :)

To all of our Florida friends and family, can't wait to see you all! Two more days!

Monday, April 14

Weekend flowers


This weekend we decided to finish up our landscaping around our trees. While we were at Lowe's, Leah and I saw some flowers we liked. So we planted them around each tree.

Periwinkles around the trees

Phlox in the garden under the dining room window

The phlox is from last year. I almost pulled it out last fall because it looked dead but I never got around to it. Look at it now! he long thin things in front are tulips and hyacinth. I got them from Wal-Mart in a pot. When they were done blooming, I pulled them out of the pot and put the bulbs in the ground. We will see if they make it.

The other thing we did this weekend was build a basketball goal. Yes, you heard that right. Here it is in action:
How's that for ghetto? :)

Thursday, April 10

Tea for Three


I took the girls to a place called SweeTea's Cakes for tea time today. Mike was going wakeboarding today so I wanted to do something just us girls. This place is new to downtown Monroe and it is SO cute. It is family-owned and the lady is really nice. She helped me set Erin up in her high chair and got Leah a cupcake and some juice. I got to have hibiscus mint tea and a cranberry scone with raspberry preserves and clotted cream. YUM! It was a fun little outing for us girls.

I am also planning Leah's birthday party. She has been wanting to have a tea party for her birthday. But I was not having much luck finding tea party things that I liked. So we went to Party City to check out the selection. We left with a new party theme: luau. They had an entire aisle devoted to luaus and with a little convincing that it could be just like the Legendary Luau Brothers, Leah was in.

Tuesday, April 8

Middle of the night lurkers


So last night at 3am. Mike woke up to find Leah at his side of the bed. Here are all the things she did prior to winding up at his bedside:

* woke up and got out of bed
* went into her bathroom, turned on the light, and put the potty seat on the potty
* went potty and wiped
* realized that her panties were a bit damp (I guess she only mostly made it)
* got a new pair of panties out of her drawer and put them on inside out
* tried to put her jammies back on

The only flaw in her plan was those darn jammies. She wore footie pajamas to bed last night, you know the kind that zip from one ankle to chin. Well, she put the zip footie on first, then couldn't get the other leg in (honestly, who could?). She went merrily back to bed after we helped her dress.

I had always said that I would stop using the baby monitor on her room (yes, we still use it) when she could get up in the night and go potty without help. I think this pretty much qualifies. I know that if she needs anything she will come and get us. So my firstborn is taking one more step towards big girldom, unsupervised sleep!

Getting to know Leah


1. What's your middle name? Cathleen

2. What food will you eat every time? Mac-n-cheese, cheeseburger from McD's

3. Describe a usual lunch for you? turkey sandwich, grapes

4. What's your favorite drink? 2% milk

5. What are your very favorite songs? Twinkle, Twinkle; You are my sunshine, the Name Game

6. Who are your favorite fictional characters? Dora, Cinderella, Ariel

7. What is your favorite TV show? still Dora, but you also love Signing Time

8. What is your favorite movie? Cinderella, hands down

9. What/who are your favorite stuffed animals? not really a stuffed animal fan, but LOVES her dolls: Baby Carol and Darby (from My Friends Tigger & Pooh)

10. What are your favorite electronic toys? our laptop, your "CD" player from Nana

11. What are your favorite non-electronic toys? baby doll stroller, dress-up clothes

12. What are your favorite books? Berenstain Bears books and books we take out from the library

13. When's your naptime? no more naps for me unless I had a rough night and am cranky

14. When's your bedtime? 7:30-8pm

15. What's your bedtime routine? Take medicine (Singulair), brush teeth either in your bathroom or Mommy's, go potty, get jammies on, read 2 stories in your reading chair, turn on music and off lamp, Mommy and/or Daddy stays for one song and we talk about the day and tomorrow, hug, kiss, sookie (Eskimo kiss)(sometimes we just blow kisses, hugs and sookies, sometimes we actually give them), night night!

16. Besides the obvious, what's in your bed at night? blankie, Baby Carol

17. When is your happiest time of the day? depends, but usually early afternoon

18. What can make you laugh 100% of the time? rough-housing with Daddy

19. What makes you mad 100% of the time? making you do something you don't want to do

20. What do you do to make others laugh? Talk gibberish

21. What do you do that drives your Mommy crazy? make me put on your shoes more than once because they are "bozzering" you

22. If you talk, what word(s) do you say incorrectly every time (but it's so cute that you can just go on saying it that way for a while)? not too much anymore, we just mastered the "th" where you were using "f" before (thirsty instead of firsty)

23. If you talk, what are your favorite words or phrases? I can do it!, I'm so, so starving.

24. What physical feat have you just accomplished? learning to pedal a bike or tricycle

25. Who are some friends you play with often? Ian, Kenna, Andy, Porter, Megan (neighborhood) Ava, Emma (school)

Getting to know Erin


1. What's your middle name? Audrey

2. What food will you eat every time? puffs, anything NOT baby food

3. Describe a usual lunch for you? a grain cereal and a veggie

4. What's your favorite drink? formula, but you love juice too

5. What are your very favorite songs? you love Leah to sing Twinkle, Twinkle to you

6. Who are your favorite fictional characters? none in particular yet

7. What is your favorite TV show? whatever sis is watching

8. What is your favorite movie? not in your attention span

9. What/who are your favorite stuffed animals? Pluto

10. What are your favorite electronic toys? a Baby Einstien push button thing

11. What are your favorite non-electronic toys? anything you can shake to make noise

12. What are your favorite books? Brown Bear, Just like Daddy, Pajama Time

13. When's your naptime? between 8-9am for about 2 hrs and again between 1-2 for (hopefully) 2 hrs, if one of my naps is missing or short, I may take a 3rd at 4:30

14. When's your bedtime? 7pm, no later or we hit a wall of crank

15. What's your bedtime routine? Take off clothes, put on clean diaper and diaper rash cream, smooch your little neck and armpits while you shriek with laughter, put on jammies, drink a bottle, read 2 stories, nuk (pacifier) goes in mouth, music on, lamp off, short snuggle, then in bed with your blankie next to your face, cover up and say good night!

16. Besides the obvious, what's in your bed at night? just blankie and covers

17. When is your happiest time of the day? right when you wake up, as long as it was a decent sleep

18. What can make you laugh 100% of the time? smooches on your neck, Leah talking gibberish to you

19. What makes you mad 100% of the time? wiping your face, having a bottle in sight but not in your mouth

20. What do you do to make others laugh? pat, pat, pat someone's face

21. What do you do that drives your Mommy crazy? take off your socks at every opportunity (this just started recently)

22. If you talk, what word(s) do you say incorrectly every time (but it's so cute that you can just go on saying it that way for a while)? no talking

23. If you talk, what are your favorite words or phrases? da da da da

24. What physical feat have you just accomplished? pincer grasp to put bits of food into your mouth

25. Who are some friends you play with often? well, you sit next to Chase occasionally and steal his toys, does that count?

Monday, April 7



We went to a birthday party yesterday (Happy Birthday Grayson & Ella!) at Frank Liske Park in Concord. If you are ever up there and want to go to the park, this one was AWESOME! We had lots of fun. Anyway, I wanted to write about things I heard Leah say.

I asked her if she had to go to the bathroom. She said Why? Is there a bathroom 'round here?

When we left, I stopped for gas. I was complaining about the pump being slow. As we were pulling away, Leah says That was the slowest pump EVER!

Today out of the blue: Mommy Bommy, I really like this home I'm living in.

Saturday, April 5

Some pictures


from our courtship days.

Mandi & I getting ready for the Jacksonville Regional

Mike rocking out in the yellow house

From our spring break road trip, is it any wonder that I fell in love with THIS? :)

A toga party

My anniversary gift


My husband is seriously the most creative gift giver. Obviously he can't be THIS creative for every holiday we encounter or he would get burned out. :) But this anniversary gift was awesome.

You all know that we met because of color guard. Stacy and I were in the same guard, Paradigm and Mike came to watch our dress rehearsal (Jan. 9, 2000) before the competitive season began. He noticed me on the floor performing and posted on our guard's website how hot he thought I was. :) I kept trying to figure out who had posted about me because he didn't leave his real name. I finally discovered it was Stacy's brother, the one with the blue hair. I was totally surprised that someone would notice me out of everyone. We started emailing each other back and forth and that progressed to talking on the phone.

One day I asked him through email what he was doing the next night. I suggested we rent Muppets from Space because we had been talking about it and no one else wanted to see it but us. So we got together the next night (Feb. 2, 2000) and watched the movie. I did not want to go home. :) From that day on we spent all the time we could spare together.

A little over a year later, in May, Mike proposed and a year after that, on April 5, 2003, we got married. You know the rest.

So for my gift Mike got me a FLAG! Not only that he got me THIS flag.

You can't really see the embroidery, but on the left is the date we met, the top is the date of our first date, the right is our wedding date, the bottom is today's date. Down the vertical strip is our initials, MG & AT.

How great is that present?!?!?! I have been saying every once in a while that it would be fun to have a flag to spin. I was just speaking hypothetically, I never thought I would actually have one. Now, not only do I have one, but I have one that commemorates our relationship. What an awesome idea! Thanks, baby!

Love is...


I used to think that being in love
Meant passion, excitement, and romance.
Now I understand that real love is all those things,
But it's so much more...

Love is...
Watching television together,
Sharing Sunday-morning newspapers,
Talking through our problems,
Reading next to each other in bed,
Cuddling when the nights get cold,
And knowing we will always be together.

Being with you has shown me
All that love can be.

I'm so glad I get to share my life
And my love with you.
(from the card I gave to Mike this morning, I didn't write this)

April 5, 2003-April 5, 2008 (5 years)

Thursday, April 3

Mashed banana, mashed banana


(title is a Wiggle reference)

This morning Erin ate small bits of banana and buttered toast for breakfast. How's that for growing up? I think she is going to be one of those kids who rejects baby food as soon as she is capable of sustaining herself on table food. She ADORES everything I have given her so far. The second little tooth finally peeked through right next to the first one so we are getting there.

On another note, thanks to my wonderful husband for the anniversary flowers! Our 5th anniversary is on Saturday (we are spending it at a 2 yr old's birthday party), but the flowers arrived today. We had a minor issue with last year's flowers. See when they send the flowers, they are not yet blooming so that they will last longer. When they arrived, Mike was sorely disappointed because they did not look at all like the picture he saw online. So he called the company and complained (big shocker there, right?). They sent another bouquet. By the time that one arrived, the first one had bloomed nicely and I had two enormous bouquets on my kitchen island. Don't get me wrong, they were lovely. But Mike learned a thing or two about flowers. So he had this one delivered early on purpose in order for it to bloom by our anniversary. Does he think ahead or what? :)