Friday, April 11, 2014

Filling in the Gaps

Yes I am WAY overdue for a nice big blog dump update.  But the time has come!  Mainly I realized it's almost time for me to start writing about them turning 2 (!) and I couldn't do that without filling in a little bit.  So, here come the bullets...


  • Zoo!  We've been taking advantage of our zoo membership and the lovely weather lately.  The kids are more and more interested in the animals each time.  And I was brave and let them in the petting zoo.  The dirt and climbing areas were more fun than the goats and I was a little stressed keeping track of them, but it was worth it.  Latest trip they were loving the monkeys and, of course, the ducks.  There's even a lake right outside the zoo with tons of ducks we like to picnic at!  
  • Moody Gardens Aquarium!  Totally worth the hour drive.  The kids LOVED it and had a blast running around looking at everything- especially the penguins and seals.  There were even divers feeding the fish while we were there and they waved to the kids- so cute!
  • Duck feedings- this is now a daily occurrence.  There are lots of ducks around our neighborhood and we start off each walk by checking out the closest fake lake for ducks.  

Sweet Sisters in the car

All these outings are exhausting!

The Kiddos

  • Andrew: completely into trucks, construction, tools, and airplanes.  Loves playing outside and looking for planes.  Points out everything.  Our puzzle whiz.  Still the bully toy stealer.  Quite the dramatic cryer if he doesn't get his way.  
  • Benjamin: super stacker!  Stacks anything and everything and sometimes it works in my favor when cleaning up.  Loves his food- play and real.  Still savoring every. last. bite.  Mr. Stubborn especially when I'm trying to make him talk.  
  • Caroline: no longer failure to thrive!  She's held steady at the 50th percentile for several months now.  She loves to shake her booty and copy dance moves and read.  She's my little caretaker often seen wiping off Leah when she's crying or "dusting" the toys.  She can have some mega mood swings.  Definitely a mama's girl.
  • Leah: Can flip from back to tummy, stand supported for up to 19 sec, hold onto toys for minutes, reach for toys, and push up on her arms when on all 4s!  Has eaten and kept down  minuscule amounts of graham cracker, goldfish, and animal crackers.  Loves Larry the Cucumber and VeggieTales.  Doing awesome with her vision apps on the iPad.  Always surprising us. 
  • Allison: The tattle tale.  Ms. "uh oh" uses the phrase as a warning or to point out what her siblings have done.  Owns her little cuteness with her shoulder shrugs to avoid tasks and giggles.  Loves to dance and copy dance moves.  Enjoys puzzles and coloring and being the center of attention.
  • Levi: completely obsessed with guitars and cleaning tools (mops, swiffers, vacuums...).  We hide them from him most of the time.  He does give us a little musical performance each morning.  Loves hugs and kisses.  Not afraid to hold his own against his bigger siblings. Loves to imitate- especially silly faces. 

  • Overall: We've been working on increasing words and reducing the straw cup fun of dripping milk everywhere.  My "straw cup boot camp" has improved the behavior, but we still need to get extra tough to eliminate it.  Words are slowly, but surely increasing.  They have been signing more, legitimately answering yes/no questions, and learning many animal sounds.
  • With the awesome weather lately we have been outside every afternoon with a picnic snack and just plain playing in the backyard.  One of my favorite activities is to have races across the yard- especially when I take turns running like a different kid.  They each have their own unique run- cute and funny at the same time.  It has been wonderful for all of us!  And it totally wears the kids out :)
backyard picnic

The Rest of Us

  • Maggie was attacked by another dog a month or so ago.  She's fine but we had to call animal control when the dog followed her home and would not leave.  Keep dogs on a leash!
  • Dave had a birthday quite awhile ago now.  He enjoyed sleeping in, eating favorite foods, and a surprise guys night out I coordinated :)  And now he's older than me for a couple of months.
  • Dave went to Thailand for work at the end of March.  The trip was 2 weeks long and thankfully my parents stayed with me to help out.  He really enjoyed it there.  His workshops went well and he loved the food and the scenery and all the touristy things he was able to fit in.
  • Dave also went to Disney World for his brother's wedding.  I stayed home with the kiddos.  Of course he had a great time at Disney!  The wedding was beautiful and the time spent with family and old friends at Magic Kingdom was really great for him.  
  • I was proud of myself/exhausted for handling the house (+ some usual helpers) during the Disney trip.
  • In between the NYC trip and the Thailand we went to Austin for 2 days to visit old friends and family.  Although it was stressful to unpack and repack in such a short time, the break away was much needed!  Everyone had a great time and the kiddos were perfect in the car.  Just what I needed after a rough flight home.
And I leave you with these two cute guys...

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