Saturday, May 30, 2009

Fountainstic Day

We've been BUSY this weekend! Zoo trip Friday, housework and a trip to the park with Nora this morning for Brian, I did errands, homework, and then we all got back together this afternoon and headed to the fountain for a couple of hours, just to cool off.

It hit 90 degrees or so today! NUTS!

It didn't take Nora long to figure out the water is FUN!

She did wonder at first, but all the other kids there screaming and having a good time finally convinced her she was enjoying it! Daddy took his first turn at it, then...
It was my turn! We got SOAKED to the bone. So glad I brought a ton of towels, just in case. Turns out we needed them because...

Nora would come back, cuddle in a towel with Daddy, then go back for more!

I love watching her try to interact with older kids. She can't say anything, and the kids aren't always sure what to do with her, but these kids shared their balloon with her briefly, and they all stood around her for some time. It was very cute!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Cute Picture of The Day

Nora and I go to Riverfront Park on a pretty infrequent basis, but recently she's gone a few times, and has recently broken into a run when she sees the playground.

It amazes me how quickly she's learned to climb stairs, ramps, and how to throw herself down slides so willingly and gleefully.

She even learned that she can't climb UP the slide (she has to go around) AND that if she lifts her feet up, she goes down FASTER.

And to her, FASTER is BETTER.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Cute Picture of The Day

Nora had her Uncle John, Aunt Jill, and cousins John and Erik here for a nice long holiday weekend, and she couldn't have been spoiled more rotten by all the wonderful attention!

Saturday we had a day at the park with the kids, and Sunday afternoon Jeff, Judy, Mom and the girls all came over for a barbecue and to hang out in the fabulous weather. Some friends of John & Jill's also came over, since they live in town, and they brought a little girl who was beyond adorable! (I promise to blog some bbq pictures too later!)

This morning before JJJ&E left for home, we all went to breakfast at "Word of Mouth" bistro & cafe in central Salem, and it was WONDERFUL!

Nora thoroughly enjoyed sitting with John and Jill most of the time...after she wanted down we all took turns following her around too!

I just love this picture of all three of them. Like Pastor Mark and others have said "Wow, it's hard to see all the LOVE for that kid, huh?!"


Learning All About "Poppy" (aka Potty)

Nora's learning to talk, and along with that comes some sign language (showing me by grabbing her diaper in front that she's gone potty) and also outright telling me she's gone "poppy".
After reading in my Parenting For Dummies book (I love that book for straightforward questions like "when is my kid ready to start potty training?") it said to get one and start showing the kid around it, and talking about going potty, and what we do.

This week, we got a new potty in the house, and Nora mostly uses it as a step stool to get up onto our bed, but I did finally show her, with no diapers on, how to sit on the thing with the lid up, which she did, and was so very proud of herself when I cheered her on.

We're a long ways from peeing in there as far as I know, but it's begun!

Friday, May 22, 2009

Zoo Doo

We went to the zoo this morning! Brian left for the whole week in Bandon, out on the coast, and in the morning we got up, loaded up the girl and off we went.

Being that it is a holiday weekend, and being that it's the first day to crack nearly 70 degrees on a weekend, it was CARAZY at the zoo today!

We had to wait in line for tickets, and even to have our tickets checked! There is an advantage to going in February when it's 40 degrees!

We walked down through Northwest Trek -- it's a long slow decline through a NW forest, which has bears, bald eagles, cougars, and salmon...Nora had a ball walking and crawling through this hollowed-out log play feature thingamajob. She liked it SO much she kept running back up to it and going through it long after we thought we were past it!

When we finally got to the bottom where the petting zoo was, we took her in, and Nora went up to each goat and said "HI!" When Brian asked her what goats say, she changed her tune. She went up to the next goat and said "Baaaaaaaaaaaa!"

After that it was time to check out the monkeys and the Amazon area, which had lots of big fish, some orangatans, and of course...ROCKS?

Nora, aka "Magellan" as I call her, spent most of her time today not necessarily looking or talking to the animals, but checking out the texture of nearly every inanimate object as well.

We had lunch down in our Africafe, and then Nora ran wild and free all over the Great Lawn/Ampitheater they have near the elephants. It's amazing how within just a week or two, she's more agile, faster, and more able to run and stop to go down the concrete stairs without falling.

Here's a picture with Daddy after we tried our very first "Elephant Ear" at the zoo. Dough, sugar, cinnamon...usually she doesn't have much of a sweet tooth, but that was delicious!

And here's one with Mommy! Miss Nora is such a's hard to get everyone looking at the camera, but even when she doesn't she's cute!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Sprinkler Discovery

It was a gorgeous 80 degree day here in Oregon today...and after Nora's nap, we took a sprinkler out in the back yard and hooked it up, and had a little fun! Nora had fun walking back and forth...

Sometimes she'd come over to me and point at the water like she was saying "Hey! Look Mommy!" as if she'd just discovered it AND it was brand new to me too!

After we went through three pairs of shorts in one morning/afternoon, I realized we didn't have nearly enough, so we went to the fabric store and found a few wild colors and a simple pattern...

I got a few of these cut out and sewn tonight (they're VERY simple) and now she's got a few pairs of capris and shorts to wear this summer. She LOVED the first ones I tried on her before she went to bed. Ladybugs and butterflies are a new favorite around here!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Life Among The Crazies

This picture, imperfect as it is, struck my funny bone yesterday.

I was looking through pictures to blog, and realizing that a GOOD picture of Nora looking at the camera is tough to get these days, since she's in CONSTANT motion... but getting both of us at the same time is, well, virtually impossible.

We're constantly doing something around here. My school, Brian's work, our house stuff, our trips to the zoo with Nora. Teaching her all the things that she wants to learn -- she's talking a little more each day -- it all just makes each day blaze by.

This past Friday we went to the zoo and spent some time down by the elephants, but Nora spent an incredible amount of time just running around, not looking at anything to speak of. But in the kids play area where a number of statues of smaller animals exist, a couple of Dads were standing in the middle, wrangling their four kids, when Nora walked up to the elephant and I said "Nora, give the elephant some LOVE", and Nora went up to the elephant, nuzzled it and said "Ohhh."

The Dads melted.

School's busy, but I'm getting all A's. Nora's growing, learning colors, shapes, letters and loving music, singing and dancing. She's 20 months old today, and definitely a strong-willed toddler careening towards her two's as fast as time will let her.

Here's a few things from this week:

From my friend Gerry's comment the other day that Nora should be on "What Not To Wear -- Toddler Edition", we find ourselves having to agree. This makes me remember days of Hannah's stripes/spots/plaid get-ups from her toddlerhood, and Miriam's various shades of pink/purple/red concoctions and we realize our daughter didn't fall far from the P/M family tree in the bad fashion decisions at an early age.

The good news is, Hannah and Miriam are now gorgeous teenagers with much better taste, so we maintain hope...

The difference in her clothing is that when Brian dresses her, she ends up in a dress with pants and a hat because "that's what she wanted to wear". When I dress her, I say "Nora, come here." HA. And the results are staggering. Here, we have her dressed in an outfit that makes parents at the zoo say "Oh, what a cute little girl," instead of "Someone should call this in..." Don'tcha think?

That's it from here!

Sunday, May 03, 2009

We're All Over The Place.

I love this picture of Brian and Nora...I have titled it "There's a haircut in somebody's future...but not yet!"

All right. Well, you know you're WAY behind on blogging when your mother-in-law e-mails to make sure you're alive and ok...

It's been over a week, maybe two now...I don't even know anymore!

Busy busy busy around here...

In less than a week I had two midterms, one in Psychology (got 49/50) and my Anatomy & Physiology class (90/100). And of course a couple of quizzes and lots of other stuff.

Then Nora, Brian and I ALL got the same horrific snotty cold from hell.

We're not over it, but we're over it enough to move on with life. As I've said a few times this week between DayQuil & NyQuil doses for myself: At least it's not Swine Flu.

Nora's a busy girl. We've been working on talking...her sounds get more varied every day, and the other day I would have sworn she said "ALL DONE!" at the end of a meal.

She laughs and has a great time over everything, and despite her nasty cold, still saw the zoo today with me, and has had a lot of fun learning to draw with crayons and markers and sidewalk chalk too. And she's learning to play new instruments with Daddy. This past week or two she's learned to actually blow into the recorder!

Friday night was The Pizza Night Thing (PNT) at Jeff & Judy's house, where Nora got a little extra time (and nice weather) to run around the yard and check out the horses too...and of course spend some time with her lovely cousins (Miriam's in this picture with her). She ADORES Hannah and Miriam and remembers them so well that when I tell her that's where we're going, she stops complaining about the ride in the car!

She also has learned the value of doling out hugs and kisses. When I say "Give Bestema some love..." Nora says "OH!" and goes cheek-to-cheek and hugs her Bestema.

This weekend we got a lot of "administrative" stuff done around here, like moving our iTunes library (and backing it up), which really shouldn't have taken forever...but it did.

Brian bolted the last of the furniture to the walls after yet another story of a toddler climbing a dresser and it nearly falling on top of him.

So while I took Nora to the zoo (I seriously said "Show the elephant some LOVE!" and she went "OHHHHHHHHH" to the elephant for this picture above), Brian not only handled the last of the topple-proofing, but he vented the bath vents properly out of the attic...they were both improperly attached upstairs.

We've had a little good weather too these past couple of weeks, where I've put up the tent for her to play in (and later bought something more expendable and permanent at Goodwill for a "Fort" for Nora).

And finally, Nora and I participated in the March of Dimes "March for Babies", which my friend Patti does every year as a tribute to her son Cannon.

Patti and I bonded quickly over the fact that she lost a son in similar circumstances as I lost Jacob.

She's a wonderful person with two sons who are both pre-approved for Nora to go out with later in life. We don't want to actually ARRANGE the marriage, because you know, that would be sorta counter to our otherwise staunch view of equality for women.

So there you have it...the past two weeks, despite runny noses and big boxes of lotion Kleenex, have been busy!


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