Monday, February 17, 2014

Valentines Week

We went to a store we don't usually go to, and they had these race car carts that Anika was quite excited about. I get excited when she gets excited about stuff like this.  I walked around this store with both girls for a very long time because there were so many things my normal store doesn't have. Both girls were so patient while I wandered around, which I appreciated.
The girls and I went grocery shopping with my friend this weekend and well...haha, It wasn't quite the same experience. The problem child was NOT the baby.  It was pretty ridiculous. 
Before the grocery store, we had gone to a few other stores too.  Anika has been doing chores at home and earned something she had asked for a while ago. She wanted some snow white gloves to go with her snow white dress for Disney world (We go in a few weeks).   I don't buy her everything she wants (obviously)  and when I said no, she asked how she could change my mind. I told her she could earn the Snow white gloves.
SO, she has been doing her chores and we have been keeping track and she earned her gloves. She went to the store and there was ONE pair left and then she paid for them.   I could have just bought them on amazon, but I thought it was good for her to do the whole thing of buying them.   While we were at the store, she saw something else she wants, so I told her she can start earning that now.
If you are wondering what she does, they are things she had done previously for a long time, but not consistently. She grew bored of her chores quite some time ago, so now she is doing them again.
She feeds the dog, clears the dinner table, picks up all her toys, puts her shoes and jacket away, puts her books away, puts dirty clothes in the hamper,  and follows directions :)
I am going to add in,  washing hair without going crazy. Right now, she goes CRAZY on days we have to wash her hair, which is not often. She just really hates it.

When I transfer her from the car to her bed, its a success!

I saw these little baskets at Home goods and I am always looking for something cuter to carry my wood in. I spray painted a plastic drink bucket a few weeks ago outside in 10 degrees, so ...the paint chipped off the bucket and it was all a big huge fail.
I like this canvas tote, but Andrew isn't feeling it. Not durable enough for him, but it stays for now.  I just need to carry wood in and have some there. We used to have a HUGE wood box, but it was too big for our small space.   I would rather go outside more often to get more.  Wood stoves save so much money on heat, but boy are they dirty and ugly. The paint chipped off the top of our stove and we bought wood stove paint, but as you can see it just chipped off as well! Nothing seems to fix it :(


She isn't a big fan of laying on the floor, so I moved her floor time play thing so she could sit up and see it.

TWO books we read last week had the word hate in it. A Llama Llama book AND this sesame street book.  It is just not a nice word for two year olds.  I think I already mentioned this, but Anika told me she hated me when she was mad at me.   She also told me the only people who like me are mean people.  She tries to hurt my feelings when she gets mad at me...she even told me those are her intentions! 
Why does she get mad at me? Oh you know, when I don't give her what she wants or I tell her no. 

We always read stories before bed and when Andrew is at work, we do it like this :)  Me and my girls.

I made this photo when we got out of the house on time for the first time. haha.
Leni is much like how Anika was as a baby, and is happy when she can be involved in everything.  She likes to listen to me talk to her as I make my coffee and make breakfast, pack up lunches, etc. The bumbo seat makes that very easy and convenient for me to get ready for work and out the door.  She also sits in it at dinner and always "eats" with us, aka: watches us eat and laughs at us.
BUT, since its recalled (that wasn't really an issue for me since I never leave her unattended in it) AND Leni was already arching out of it, we retired it and moved onto the booster seat...

She isn't really eating food yet! ha I just put that there.

Of course, Anika wanted her old booster seat when Leni was in it.

She got to help Anika and I make Valentine cupcakes.

Anika even cracks eggs without getting shells in it! She has a very interesting way of doing it, but I let her go with it.  I love days when we are not rushed so I can let her just do stuff. I cant say that always happens, but I know she feels more confident and happy when she gets to really help.

We used water from boiling beets to color the frosting.  Anika (as well as other kids) tend to react negatively to food dyes.  You can NOT taste the beets.
I made the frosting from memory- confectionary sugar, butter, vanilla extract and a little NH maple syrup.
Anika, Leni and I took Piri to the vet on Tuesday. (I have Tuesdays off right now)  ANika saw all the dog food and treats and told me she was hungry...and she wanted a treat or a snack. I was like, ohh, these are all for pets! haha. She was very disappointed.

We made the same Valentines as last year with the lollipops.
Above is this year.
Below is last year. haha.

I took this of Leni because she is a TRUE Valentines day baby.  When it ALL began for Miss Leni :) wink wink.
The girls opening cards from Nona an Grampa on Vday.Video below of Anika all excited. I love how she says Ballentynes instead of Valentines. Ballentynes is a store in NZ.



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 The one above- not embedding- but I love how Leni is just hanging out smiling and then Anika elbows her and she doesn't even really flinch but she stops smiling.  Tough little Leni.

 2nd link is a video of Andrew giving Anika her gifts.  She had wanted the dress and asked him to buy her a princess dress off ebay. HA! Then in the video she says thanks for buying this on ebay for me daddy.
For the record, he had me order it on amazon.  HE also got Anika a sterling silver bracelet, and he got me a bracelet too.
I don't know,  these videos wont embed. so annoying.

I didn't get the girls anything (I got Anika a small chocolate heart), but I think its really sweet and special Andrew did. I Hope its a tradition he keeps and I think the girls will love it.   
And a few of my Leni bug

ha, out to coffee with nona at the café

Daddy and Anika painting (they had just started and ANika wanted to use white paint, haha). Leni in the swing watching and smiling at them.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Want to know a secret?

First I'll tell you something.
Then, I will do another mish mash of what we have been up to.  That seems to be my new trend.
The secret is...
Lennox is 12 weeks old today and she has never spent a night in a crib.
Or a bassinet.
She has spent every night of her life in our bed!!
The night (or early morning) Lennox was born, we were up for several hours after her birth doing all the exams,  being excited, etc.  Then around 5 AM my midwives got Lennox and I all snuggled in the bed- Both of us in my bed (Well, technically, it was the guest bed downstairs) and told us to get some rest. I was like really? I mean, I know Historically, babies stay with moms, but I was like so soon after birth? I also know a ton of parents who do it this way, but still, it wasn't really what I did before.  I had the bassinet set up down in the guest room right next to the bed. I told Andrew to go upstairs and get my snuggle nest. I didn't have one with Anika, but a friend gave me one when I was pregnant with Lennox. I was excited to use it.
This is a snuggle nest. I got the image from google images. And yes, that's exactly how Andrew and I look using it! lol.
I felt more comfortable using this, so the baby was protected.
 Now, Anika never ever left my side in the hospital, but she had that little bassinet thing that all hospitals have. Andrew was on a pull out bed and I was in the hospital bed, but after one feeding the first night I just wanted to be in Andrew's bed with him, so I took the baby over  there to feed her and I fell asleep-  all 3 of us slept in that pull out bed for a while, it just happened. The nurses came in every couple hours to check on stuff (maybe to make sure the baby woke to feed?)  and I remember one nurse saying something about how they really weren't supposed to let the baby sleep anywhere besides the bassinet thing...but she let us, or didn't really press the matter. It was also brought up how I hadn't had any drugs so that wasn't a risk.
Once we were home, Anika always slept in the bassinet beside my bed until she moved to her crib.  Maybe she stayed in my bed sometimes after a feed, but certainly not often.

On Lennox's 2nd night,  we moved upstairs at our house,  and we used the snuggle nest every night between Andrew and I. We even took it to Texas in our suitcase.
At some point, I just stopped using it...I cant remember when.
People often ask me how many times she feeds at night or how she sleeps.
Hmmm, I don't know!  She puts her sweet little hands on me when she wakes and I hear her make a little sucking sound with her mouth  and I roll over and feed her without even fully waking.  SHE has never cried at night. I feed her before she even reaches that point and to be woken up by her sweet hands touching me is much nicer than crying.  I pretty much sleep through the night- I mean, I am aware I fed her in the night, but I never even sit up in bed so I never really wake. She usually feeds twice and everyone goes right back to sleep with no fuss.
Its pretty damn easy. That's the truth!
 And, I've already had one baby. I know how fast it goes by. I know how quickly they grow. I don't want to miss out this time.  We both like her in bed. And, she sleeps all evening before Andrew and I go to bed, so we still get lots of alone time when he is home. She is also very still and a bump on a log. Ani was a squirmer from birth. Anika was rolling both ways by 1.5  months. Leni doesn't roll over yet, but she lifts her head very well. Anika didn't take a dummy (pacifier) and Lennox LOVES that damn thing.
Today, I was thinking, hmm, I should put her in the crib and see how long she sleeps in there at night.
(She sleeps anywhere during the day- car seat, swing, couch, crib, wherever, whenever).
But, then I thought, why? The only reason I am considering getting her into her own crib is because I feel like that's what I am SUPPOSED to do. That is what people Expect us to do. That's the norm these days. It wasn't always the norm, but that's the norm now. I finally thought, that's a silly reason to change what is going well.  So, for now, she stays.  And, when its no longer mutually beneficial and making everyone happy, we change it.

Anika started coming into our bed a lot after we moved her from crib to toddler bed.  I would wake up to her crawling in my bed a lot. I was generally too lazy and half asleep to bother with it. If you didn't notice, I sleep very well! haha.   We let it go for a while, but when she was kicking Andrew a lot and keeping him awake, he said we should get her to stay in her bed, we did, although, he kept putting it off because he said he liked her there (He misses her being away so much for work), but he also wanted to sleep well. When he finally grew a pair,  It took TWO nights. Two nights to stay in her bed. Not an issue at all.  When I wanted to night wean Anika, I did that in a couple nights.  SO, while things work, they work. When they no longer work for all of us, we change it.
So, that's my secret.
Its one of those things I am surprised about, but its a pleasant surprise. 
Get this- These pajamas my 2 month old is filling out- I have a video of Anika CRAWLING in the same ones! Yup, that's how much bigger Leni is. She is tall and just big, not chubby. I wouldn't  rolly polly though :)
Anika just loves playing doll house.
The other day she wanted to play with Len and she said: This is the daddy. He makes a lot of babies.
I don't know. She definitely rambled on a second later about the daddy making the babies breakfast, so, it was probably that, but I was startled at first.
HA! I guess this shows that she likes the co sleeping family.
I had a ski race this past weekend. Andrew was working away. My mom had another race to work at. My dad was working.
Luckily, I have an awesome friend who came with us (The race was at a mountain over an hour north). She hung out with my kiddos while I previewed the course, took some runs, and did my race run.
I am lucky to have good friends.
I also won the race. Best female time :) 
move over Linsay vonn. HA. I was thinking later that day on the ride home, one minute I was in the ski lodge bathroom nursing my infant (only I have ever provided her with the nutrition that keeps her alive and thriving) and changing her cloth diaper... and just fifteen minutes later, I was racing down a mountain having a kick ass adrenaline rush.  Actually, hauling my kids to the mountain early in the morning on a cold day, carrying all our shit, caring for my babies in the lodge and then winning a race minutes later just adds to my rush from it all. I like it. It was a good happy day.
A friend sent me this shit.  Ha.
Look closely. I asked her what she was doing and she told me she stole Daddy's phone and her dolls were using it as a tv in the doll house man cave!
Andrew called that room the man cave when they were playing and he had told her he was going to cut out an Ad with a TV In it, and tape It in that room...but I guess she found something WAYY better.
HA. She is NOT allowed to touch my phone, but Andrew doesn't lock his I guess.  I loved how she tried to blame the dolls.
Little boy on left is Andrew. I see Anika there.
Also him...when he was my age now :) ha. That's where Anika's blue eyes come from. I mean, hers are way better, but he has the blue.

This pic cracks me up! Anika in the background at the wedding we went to in December. She is a real party dancer! Lifted in the air.

Anika hasn't worn footy pajamas in well over a year- not practical for going to the bathroom in the night, but now that Leni wears them, she asked to. I have this ONe pair that fits her.  Usually she will only wear nighties, but now she said sometimes she wants to be a baby and wear foot jamas.  You can see Lennox hanging out on the bed in the back. ha.
I went back to work last week.   My friends sent me flowers on my first day! Super sweet. It was sad to leave my loves.  My days are luckily flying by so far and I am not working Tuesdays right now. 
My time off went by much too fast.
A and her cousin at our local ski area. Yes, she SKIED in that dress. haha She just stuffed it into her snow pants. She just likes to be fancy she said.
I took the photos below this morning. I was taking pics of Leni, but Anika came over too.
I love L's look here.
Out of order...A skiing. She won that new helmet at a fun race a couple weeks ago.
L holding A's finger. SWEET.
I took her photo dressed in hearts because Friday (V-DAY) marks a special day....when she started to make her mark on our lives :) wink wink.
Well, that's enough for now.  I have more, but this is long enough.