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Happy Easter!

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Happy Easter!

It’s only been a few weeks since I last blogged but I have a ton of great pictures to post already! Ellie has decided to start posing for the camera again and Ethan is always adorable – which equals great photos!

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We had a lovely Easter at home this year. We went to Easter service at church on Saturday afternoon – our church has 3 services on Saturday and 3 services on Sunday. It was awesome to wake up this morning, take our time getting ready, open Easter baskets, make breakfast, play, make lunch and then hang out – all without having to rush to get ready for church!

The kids enjoyed their Easter baskets and I made some fun Easter pancakes. Ellie thought they were so neat!

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We hunted Easter Eggs in the backyard and just had fun playing together!

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The weather was beautiful! We love spring in Colorado!!

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Last weekend we celebrated Zach’s birthday – the kids both helped him open gifts!

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Ellie started swimming lessons this past week – she LOVES swimming! I tried to get Ethan into a Parent-Tot swim class that ended up being a total flop! He LOVES the numbers on the side of the pool and did NOT want to actually participate in the class. I spent about 10 minutes man-handling him and then decided it just wasn’t worth it! He’ll be ready for lessons next summer when he’s 3.5 and can understand the point of swim lessons!

Check out some more great pictures from this month in the March-April 2015 photo album.

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Just Springing Along….

Although this weekend is the first weekend of Spring, it sure has felt like Spring for the last month. We had one crazy week of snow in there, but otherwise, it was beautiful and we got to play outside lots! The kids and I both got sick in early March, complete with croup for Ellie as usual, but we’re all healthy now!

Ellie is really enjoying preschool and is getting so much better at writing her name! At home, she really enjoys standing in the learning tower at the island and asking how to spell certain words so she can write them. We’ll help her sound out the words and sometimes help her with certain letters by drawing dots for her to trace the letter. Every day she gets better! At open gym, Ellie runs to jump on the vault and she hits the spring-board like a champ! She even runs like a gymnast! It’ll be interesting to see how she does next fall when we attempt to do gymnastics classes. Ellie says funny things these days when she’s copying something we usually say but gets it slightly wrong – it’s pretty cute. One day we were headed to the grocery store and she asked if she could get a cake pop, we told her “no” and her response was “then what’s the good news?” which was funny because we hadn’t told her there was good and bad news! Talking to her lately is so fun because she has such a good vocabulary and it’s almost like talking to an adult at times. Other adults really get a kick out of having a conversation with her also!

Both kids lately have been both wonderfully sweet and terrible-twos/terrible-fours like! It’s crazy how one thing can just set them off and something else can calm them down. Ellie isn’t as easily calmed down as Ethan is. He is still easily distracted to forget about the reason he threw a fit to begin with. We are constantly trying to figure out the “right” way to deal with each kid. It’s definitely an adventure! 🙂

Ethan’s vocabulary has exploded lately. He can articulate just about anything he wants to these days, which is pretty nice! He definitely says the darnedest things that just crack us up! Here are just a few fun things about Ethan lately:

  • He likes to say “No, I don’t want <fill in the blank> anymore” about anything when he’s tired of it. One day, the kids were watching “The Jesus Movie” and Ethan said “I don’t want Jesus anymore!!” oops!!
  • Ethan will say a word, then focus on the first sound, repeat the sound, then say the word and the letter it starts with. For example, “Music, mmm, mmm, mmm, music starts with M!” He does it with all words and letters. Then we talk about other words that start with those letters!
  • Ethan is still a champ at writing letters and numbers – he prefers blank paper where he can just write whatever is on his mind. He also likes switching colors quite often – he’ll write one or two things with one color, then switch to a new color. If you say ANY color, he’ll say “<that color>, that’s my favorite!”
  • When Ethan had a runny nose a few weeks ago, he was playing with his numbers and he got snot on one of them – he freaked out and started yelling “oh no! my eight!!” and brought it to me so I could clean it off!
  • When Ethan loses some of his number puzzle pieces and we’re searching for them, he gets SO excited when I find them. The other day I found his three and I get a “yay mama!! Three! Woo hoo!!”
  • There’s a Dora The Explorer show Ethan likes where there’s a dog-catch in the show. He watches it a lot because they count 100 keys in the show. Well, today at the park Ethan saw a man walking two dogs and he said “Hi Dog Catcher!”
  • Although I started having Ethan just have a “quiet day” instead of a nap at the beginning of the year, he has favored naps lately. One day I took him into his room to have a quiet day and he instructed me to close the windows, turn on the white noise and lay down beside him (which would normally be done for a nap) but I’d done the opposite things for his quiet day. It’s pretty great that he can tell us when he wants a nap. I only let him nap for 30-45 minutes most days because if he naps longer he will stay up crazy late… just like Ellie used to do until we figured out she shouldn’t have naps anymore!
  • Friday night we took the kids to the mall to do some quick shopping. We rode an elevator and Ethan just got a kick out of it. When we were in a few stores, Ethan kept telling people “go to the elevator!” He was so excited to go back to the elevator when we left. Well, since that trip, I have asked him about the elevator at least five different times just to help him forget about a tantrum! It’s hilarious! Today, when I dropped him off at the nursery at church, he was reaching back for me and crying for me. I told him I had to go to church and he should tell the nice lady about the elevator. He instantly stopped crying and started talking about the numbers we pressed in the elevator. Another lady that was there just stared at me in amazement that he changed his demeanor that quickly! ha!
  • Lately Ethan is REALLY good at following directions – even to go upstairs and take a bath (which used to be really difficult) and he always says “ok, mama” in the sweetest voice. I know this won’t last forever, but for now, I’m relishing in those moments!

Here’s a fun video of Ethan – playing with some sticks (they have numbers on them of course) and then singing his ABCs and counting…

Check out some pictures from this month in the March-April 2015 photo album.

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A Sunny Winter!

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Here is it the middle of February and I’ve not blogged since Christmas – yikes! We haven’t been terribly busy, but we sure have enjoyed the last few months. We’ve done open gym gymnastics at the rec center a few times and had a few play dates. Since the weather has been in the 50’s and 60’s quite a bit the last two months, we’ve been able to go for bikes rides around the block (Ellie rides her bike with training wheels still and Ethan rides a tricycle that I can push), visited parks and played in the backyard! It’s been really nice to get outside for a few hours a day when there’s no snow outside.

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Ellie is enjoying preschool and learning lots! She still doesn’t really tell us about her day or about the kids in her class, but I’m told she’s very outgoing and sweet to everyone. Ellie loves being helpful around the house and will generally help pick things up and be really proud of her work. She’s still a very picky eater but we’ve gotten her to try a few news things lately. She loves being outside and has gotten really good at riding her bike – she’s strong enough now to ride up the driveway without help! She’s pretty proud of herself when she does that. She’s still nervous around some people, but then other people energize her and she becomes wired! She loves snuggling with us and is really good at reading our facial expressions. She’s still a stinker to her brother but is really sweet to him at other times! She likes to start counting, only after Ethan has started, and can usually count from 1 to 100 by 1’s, 5’s and 10’s – with just a little bit of help.

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Ethan LOVES to write letters and numbers these days. He used to yell letters and numbers until we wrote them for him, now it’s awesome to see him doing it for himself and he’s really good at it! He seems to be left-handed, just like Ellie! I’m not even sure how that happens – we’ll see if they both stick with left as they get a little older. Ethan loves being outside, playing on the playground. He’s really strong and doesn’t make me nervous on the playground at this age like Ellie did at this age! Second-child syndrome probably 🙂 Two of Ethan’s two-year molars have popped out of the gums and we’re just waiting for the last two! Hallelujah! I’ll be glad when teething is done – it’s been pretty hard on Ethan – runny nose and diaper rash all from teething, yuck! Ethan knows phonics really well and he’ll make the “m” sound “mmm, mmmm, mmmm, mama!” or “t, t, t, tree!” all on his own. He loves singing songs and dancing too! He can count by 5’s to 100 and by 10’s to 100. He can count from 1 to 100, with a little bit of help. We’ve started doing a “quiet day” in his room for nap time lately. He was fighting naps and when he did nap he would fight bedtime. So now, he has a “quite day” in his room for about an hour playing with some foam numbers and reading books. On occasion, he’ll lay down and take a 30-minute nap, but either way, it makes bedtime so much easier! Some days he might need a longer nap, but it’s been pretty easy to adjust as needed and still be consistent with him happy to have a “quite day”.

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Here are some other funny things about the kids from the last few months that I wrote down:

Ellie:

– She said “this is blowing my mind” when we drove around looking at Christmas lights – it was hilarious (yea, it’s been too long since I’ve blogged!)

– We watched the wheels turning in her head one morning to torment Ethan and we told her, “Ellie, be nice…” and she said “just wait, this is gonna be good!” We couldn’t help but laugh!

– Zach was out of town for a few nights. Before bed, I told Ellie we should call daddy. We talked to him for about 30 seconds and then Ellie started bawling, so we got off the phone. I asked what was wrong and she said “mommy, I wouldn’t be upset if we hadn’t called daddy!” So, I guess next time I won’t offer to call daddy!

– When something is inside-out, Ellie calls it “inside-outside”.

– Ellie LOVED Katy Perry in the Super Bowl half-time show. She thinks Katy Perry is our friend, it’s hilarious! She also enjoyed the National Anthem – when we told her that was Elsa singing, she said, “where are her powers?”

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Ethan:

– He was saying all the letter’s on Zach’s Mountain Dew shirt one morning and when he was done, he said “that spells shirt!”

– Ethan learned about the “I spy” game from Barney. He likes to say “I spy something 15” – so he doesn’t quite get it yet!

– Ethan picked up Zach’s credit card while we were paying at a restaurant. He yelled “mumbers” because of the numbers on the card, but it totally sounded like “money!” and we just died laughing!

– Ethan picked up a plastic baseball bat and held it up to his eye and said “pirate ship” – like he was looking for a pirate ship!

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– He’s learned how to count from “The Count” on Sesame Street and he’ll sometimes count like “One, ahh. ahh. ahh. Two, ahh. ahh. ahh” It’s really funny

– Ethan is pretty good at sigh words. He recognizes quite a few words. He has a “Do Not Enter” sign he knows from his train set. At open gym last week there was a “Do Not Use” sign and he pointed to it “do”, “not”, “enter!” He at least got the first two words right!

– Ethan came downstairs from his quiet day last week and said, “Ellie! Surprise! I’m coming down. Had quiet day!” It was so cute! He is always so excited to go see Ellie after his quiet day!

– There’s an Elmo video on Sesame Street where Ricky Gervais sings a silly song to Elmo – he starts screaming really loud and Ethan just gets a kick out of it – we had to take a video of his reactions!

 

See more pictures from the last few months in the January-February 2015 photo album.

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Christmas 2014

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Merry Christmas! The holiday season this year was fun and busy! I attended Ellie’s preschool Christmas party right before Ellie’s two-week break from school… Grammy tagged along and had a great time. She decorated cookies, made a snow-globe and made playdough ornaments.

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Ethan enjoyed opening Christmas cards this year and said “oh”, as in “oh, so sweet” every time he saw a kid in a picture…

Our friends, Brent and Catherine, who moved to Finland a year and a half ago for work, came back in December for a long visit home. We had the honor of having them stay with us for three nights! Their daughter, Alice, is just a few months older than Ellie and their Son, Russell, is just a few months younger than Ethan. It was so much fun to see the kids play together – and for us to get to visit with a family that we just love. We can’t wait for them to move back to Colorado!!

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We did our typical “pseudo-Christmas-Eve” with each set of Grandparents at their houses. The kids had fun opening gifts and playing. We went to a live nativity scene where the kids got to pet a camel, pony, donky, sheep and alpaca. It was fun! We went twice to look at Christmas lights around town. We saw four different houses that had lights set to music and both kids LOVED it! We heard a new dub-step Christmas song and both kids about lost their minds when the song “dropped” and we can’t get enough of that song! Here’s a you tube video of them dancing to the song….

We decorated sugar cookies and a gingerbread house! Christmas morning, we woke up with the kids to open gifts and then the grandparents came over to visit and have lunch. It was a great family day! We played out in the snow – for about five minutes, one day! 😉 It snowed just after Christmas – for almost a whole day straight – it was awesome!

We hope your Christmas was as wonderful as ours and we hope the start to your 2015 is fantastic!

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See more Christmas pictures in the November – December 2014 photo album.

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December Cuties

IMG_7301December has been pretty busy so far. I’ve been working extra hours to reach a milestone at work, which has seemed to make everything at home crazy! I’m really thankful for the ability to USUALLY only work two days a week – because when I work more, it’s just insane! We are definitely looking forward to Christmas break – we all will be home for two weeks and it will be wonderful family time together!

Here are some funny things about the kiddos lately…

Ethan:

  • Lately, if Ethan gets frustrated – he’ll clench his fists and make a face while shaking his whole body. Ellie did the same exact thing at this age!
  • One night at dinner, Ellie was throwing a fit and crying. All of the sudden, Ethan said “5, 4, 3, 2, 1. Stop crying. Ellie” It was SO funny! He’s done it a few times since then.
  • He’ll say “All Aboard! Choo! Choo!” when playing with his train set.
  • He was eating his cake and Grammy asked him if his cake was good. He answered, “Yes! My cake is good!” It’s amazing the things he’s saying these days!
  • Ethan wants me to sing “Jesus Loves Me” over and over to him at bedtime – when I sing the “they are weak, but He is strong” part, he pushes his fists over his head and yells “STRONG!” in a really deep voice!
  • Ethan likes to ask “what are you doing?!” to everyone!
  • We played outside quite a bit last week because the weather was so nice. In our backyard one day, Ethan started picking up big rocks that are just outside the playground area – and he was throwing them into the playground area. Every time he through one in, he counted it – he got up to 26 when they were all inside the playground. Then he yelled “Yay! I did 26 Rocks! Hurray! 26 rocks!!”
  • Ethan and I dropped Ellie off at school on Thursday – usually Zach or I drop her off alone, on our way to work. I had the day off, and this was probably the first time Ethan has gone to drop her off with us. He ran into the classroom and saw a number rug on the floor and yelled “yay! Numbers!” and then started saying all the numbers – the numbers went to 30 and he was so excited about it!
  • He just put a blanket over his head and started saying “ah, ah, ah” like the Count on Sesame Street! And then he just kept giggling about it!

Ellie:

  • Ellie was being really good and loving and sweet one night. We told her how wonderful she was being and she said “my heart told me to be good today!” I hugged her and with tears in my eyes I told her to always listen to her heart and be good. Her response, “sometimes my heart tells me to be bad though!” ha!
  • Ellie asked in a really whinny voice one day “Mommy, can I have some candy?” I told her I didn’t like the whinny voice and to ask the right way. Her response, “I thought you were going to say no”. She seemed to think that whinny about it would change my mind! ha!
  • Ellie is a different kid these days! She asked for marinara sauce for her bread one night. I told her I didn’t think we had any but I would check in the fridge. After looking for it and we didn’t have any, I told her I was sorry but we didn’t have any. Her response, “That’s ok!” and then she went about eating her bread, plain. A month ago she would have thrown a complete fit!

These kids are so much fun these days! Of course, things aren’t perfect and they still have their moments – but man they make my heart happy!!

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See more pictures for the last few weeks in the November – December 2014 photo album.

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Ethan is TWO!

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It’s hard to believe that our baby is two-years-old! Since his birthday was the day after Thanksgiving this year, we just had a Thanksgiving/Ethan’s Birthday celebration on Thanksgiving day – while we can still get away with doing those holidays together! 🙂

He was still afraid of the candles on his cupcake (just like last year)…

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but once Ellie blew them out for him, he was happy….

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He got some stacking blocks, a clock and a train set (along with the bounce house that was also Ellie’s present a month ago — they still play on it at least once a day! yay!) The kids played with the train set for quite a while and this is one of my favorite pictures….

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Seriously, how cute is that?

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He wasn’t really in to opening gifts yet – so Christmas will be interesting this year! ha!

We took him in for his two-year check-up last week and he weighed in at 31.5 pounds (82nd percentile) and 35.25 inches tall (60th percentile). He’s catching up to his sister!!

What a sweet, smart, funny, laid back, adorable little boy…. we love you Ethan Taylor Scholz!

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See more pictures from his birthday in the November – December 2014 photo album.

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November, so far…

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November is half way over and I don’t even know where it went!! Zach has been traveling quite a bit already in November, so I think that’s made things go by quickly – I’ve also been working extra hours to meet some deadlines in December, so keeping track of everything going on has been hard!

The first week of November, we took Ellie to the Two Way Crossing concert at the Oriental Theater, here in Denver. She had so much fun singing to the songs and dancing and clapping. Blake and Jenny had Ellie and their niece (who is 5) come up on stage with them to sing “Deep End”. They told us in advance that they wanted to bring them up. Ellie was excited but nervous, so we had no idea if she would really go up on stage or freak out. She did GREAT! She sang and was so cute!! She wore ear plugs the whole time – they really made her happy, which was a good thing!

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Here’s a video of her singing…

I had a Wildtree freezer workshop at my house last weekend and Zach, along with some of the other guys, hung out in the basement with the kiddos – they jumped on the bounce house and had pizza. I’m not sure who had more fun! The kids play on the bounce house at least once a day! Especially since getting this past week’s worth of snow, it’s been SO NICE having that activity in the basement!

I had quite the drama happen last Tuesday night. Zach was out of town and I went to my parents’ house to pick up both kids (Zach’s mom had dropped Ellie off at my parents’ house so I didn’t have to go to two houses to pick up kids, in the snow). As I drove home with the two kids, I hit a gash in the side of the road. I see that gash all the time and always drive past it. For some reason, that night, I hit the gash on the passenger side tires. It immediately made my van ride right and I knew I’d popped my front tire! I called Zach right away to see if I could still drive on it, he said I had to stop. So I stopped on the side of the road – pulled over as far as I could. I gave the kids the tablet and some lolly pops and got out to change the tire. We JUST bought new tires for the van and purchased a spare tire to sit in the trunk because my van does NOT come with a spare tire. I could NOT get the lug nuts loose, so I called my parents to come help. My dad helped change the tire while my mom kept the kids happy. THEN we realized my back tire was flat too!! So my parents went back to their house to get their van spare tire – hoping it would fit. In the end, the tire fit and I got in the van to head home – my parents decided they should follow me home. I drove a few inches and there was a grinding on the back tire (where we put my dad’s spare tire). It was NOT good. SO – I called road side assistance and my parents took the kids to get dinner and then home, while I waited in the car. I only had to wait about an hour for the tow truck to show up. He took me and the van to a tire shop just down the street – I left the van there (with my two busted tires in the back-end) and my mom picked me up. The next day, I was planning on working – so when Zach’s mom got here, I took her car to the tire place to be the first in line to have them inspect my tires. An hour later they told me BOTH tires were completely busted! I called the dealership and luckily Zach got a road hazard warranty – I just needed to get the tires to the dealership – which is on the other side of town! It was still snowing… so my parents came and got me in their Explorer and we all drove to the dealership. A few hours later I had new tires. We went back to the tire shop and dad helped me change the tires. I drove around the parking lot and everything seemed ok, so I finally headed to work! What a mess!! A few days later, Zach took my van back to the dealership to check the alignment – which needed fixing. Now, my van is back in working order AND just yesterday Zach bought me a better jack and a breaker bar to keep in my trunk – so that next time, as long as it’s only one tire, I can change it myself! I was so thankful this week for family in town that’s willing to help. My mom HATES driving in the snow, with dad’s eyesight so bad these days, she has to drive and I know it took a lot for her to drive in the snow Tuesday and Wednesday to help me out! My dad changed tires in the snowy cold on both days and I was so thankful for the help! I’m glad that’s over and so thankful it wasn’t worse!

Here are some fun things about the kids…

Ethan

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Ethan loves singing these days. He can sing “Jesus Loves Me”, “Where is Thumbkin” (he learned this from Ellie, who learned it at school), “twinkle, twinkle little star” – and some other songs from videos he watches: “the number 1 is fun – fun, fun, fun” and Barney’s “I love you, you love me”. Here’s a video of him singing those last two songs:

It’s amazing the words and sentences Ethan says these days! If he’s playing by himself, he’ll have this kind of conversation with himself: “1, 2, 3, 4. Four circles. Good job! Awesome!” Or if he’s playing with alphabet letters, here’s something I hear: “R, R? Where are you R?”. He randomly says “hi mister” and I have no idea where that came from! When walking into SAMs the other day, he said “Hi Friends” – to no one in particular! Ellie was singing “Love is an open door” the other night and Ethan said “sandwiches” at the perfect time during that song! When he wakes up in the mornings, he yells: “Mama, mama, where are you??”

Ethan also does some crazy stuff with letters these days… here are two pics of him putting letters in order – differently, but amazing, I think!

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Ellie

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One morning while I was taking Ellie to school, Ellie said “I want to be a owl so I don’t have to go to school”. I told her that owls go to their own school. Then she listed like 5 other animals she could be – at which my answer was that all those animals went to school too. She was bummed. I was talking about my college roommates last weekend (they just attended our 10-year college reunion – I stayed home, hopefully I can go next time), and Ellie asked if they were mermaids. I don’t even know where that came from, but it was so funny!

After I got my tires fixed, I was taking Ellie to school (two days later) and she noticed the snow. Quickly, she said “mom, I hope you don’t pop your tire in the snow!” And I had to explain that it had nothing to do with the snow, but I’m pretty sure it’s going to worry her always when it snows that I’ll pop a tire! At SAMs on Friday, the fire alarm went off – and kept going off – we had to evacuate the store for a few minutes. Eventually we got to go back inside and when we were checking out, the guy told us it was a broken water pipe that caused the alarm. Ellie was confused why the fire alarm went off for that reason (so was I, really). I asked her if she’s ever had a “fire drill” at school and her response was “we haven’t had a broken water pipe”. Ha!

After her birthday, Ellie decided the balloons would look great on the can lights in the kitchen. I think she might be a lighting designer when she grows up…

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Check out some more pics from the past few weeks in our November – December 2014 Photo Album.

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Ellie’s 4-year Check-Up

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I took Ellie to the doctor for her 4-year check-up today. She actually did really well (until the end). She was very talkative with the nurse and doctor (finally she’s gotten used to them) and the doctor was impressed with her 4-year-old milestones. That made me happy. She was super cute getting her blood pressure checked and even when she had to get in the little paper gown.

She weighed in at 34.4 pounds (50th percentile) and 39″ tall (45th percentile). Luckily her shoes add an extra inch to her height, otherwise all the 40″ rides at Legoland last month would not have been an option! haha!

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I’d told her she didn’t need shots because her chart I looked at stated nothing for 4-year-olds. BUT – at the end of the appointment the doctor told us she needed two shots. Whelp, she lost it. Went crazy – basically hyperventilating! It was pretty horrible. They actually had to send in two nurses to help do the shot because they could tell I wasn’t going to be able to hold her down on her own. She cried after the shot for about 5 minutes and then I was finally able to calm her down enough to leave the office.

Needless to say, I’m glad that’s over. We’re so blessed to have healthy babies… for that I am thankful… but whew, I really hope next year’s check-up goes better — she will be getting at least one shot next year.

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Happy 4th Birthday Ellie!

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We had Ellie’s 4th Birthday Party Saturday night. Sharing her birthday with Halloween is weird – so Friday night we enjoyed trick-or-treating but then today she got to go with daddy to get her balloons and cookie cake – so it was pretty special for her. Her party was just a simple party with both sets of grandparents and it was wonderful. We had Garlic Knot pizza for dinner, a Frozen-decorated cookie cake and strawberry ice cream — all at Ellie’s request!! Oh, and she was dressed like Elsa (her halloween costume) all night long.

She opened presents – which included some color wonder books, princess Sofia doll, jewelry box, frozen lip gloss and a set of Elsa and Anna dolls! She was so happy!!

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Then she had to do a quick Two Way Crossing concert for the grandparents…. so funny!

After her concert (I had to convince her to change into comfy clothes), we brought the kids downstairs to see their dual-Birthday present from the grandparents…. a bounce house!!! It fits perfectly in the basement and it will definitely wear them out this winter when we can’t get outside to play. THEY LOVED IT!!

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Happy Birthday sweet girl – we can’t wait to see what this year brings!!!

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Check out more pictures in the November – December 2014 Photo Album.

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Happy Halloween 2014

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We took the kids trick-or-treating down our street tonight- for the first time. Ethan ran along yelling “let’s go!!” and Ellie had to tell everyone about everything each time someone opened their door. It was a blast! Our little Olaf and Elsa were the cutest ever!!! 🙂

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It was so fun hearing Ellie say “Happy Halloween” to everyone!! I never thought taking the kids trick-or-treating would be this fun. Can’t wait until next year!!

 

See the rest of the pictures in our Halloween 2014 Photo Album.