Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Baby Ellie

I thought this was going to be a Wordless Wednesday, but Baby Ellie deserves some words.  When Jon and Jess stayed with us last spring, they brought along their real, live Baby Ellie (who, at 10 months was bigger than Josh at 18, by the way).  Well, Ellie's baby doll got left behind, Josh took a liking to her, and named her...Ellie!

Side note: At least we know where Josh's baby name came from. 
Owen also has a baby doll, that he inexplicably (and without a doubt) has named "Kay-lay." 
Scott and I have debated the spelling... Kaylay? Kahlay? Caelay?, 
but we are both clueless as to where he came up with that name.  
Any ideas on that one are welcome.

Josh and Ellie were best buddies for a period.  Now, she doesn't get a lot of attention on a day to day basis, but she has become an essential traveling companion. Ellie and the bandana that serves as her swaddling blanket. A bandana that I have swaddled and re-swaddled more times than I ever swaddled either of my real babies!  Josh and Ellie share some tender moments, well, as tender as a 2-year-old can be. Many nights before Josh heads up for bed, he grabs Ellie, hold her close, whispers "nigh, nigh, E-ee," and then flings open the game cabinet, tosses her inside, slams the door shut, and sprints out of the room.

A boy and his girl.

Saturday, January 07, 2012

One More Mustache

We had a few temporary tattoos left over from Christmas, so the next morning, while I was in the shower, Scott found person who had missed out on the fun the night before.  He thought I would be mad, but how can you do anything but laugh at this site:

Yes, he spent the whole day that way, including trips to the outlet mall and grocery store.  Thankfully, Josh had no idea why everyone was grinning from ear to ear and whispering as we walked past.  So hard to get upset at a toddler with a tatoo!

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

Wordless-ish Wednesday: Visiting the Man in Red

 Our turn...
 Wait, someone is missing here...
 Family Photo!

Tuesday, January 03, 2012


During one of my recent (many) passes through Seatac Airport, I found a pack of mustache tatoos at Fireworks and tossed them in the Christmas bag.  You never know when you need a handy disguise...

Sunday, January 01, 2012

Christmas 2

Christmas is one of those days that lasts forever... in the best way!  After filling our "sleigh" with freshly opened gifts, we joined what seemed to be an unusually large number of holiday travelers heading north out of Seattle. We arrived at the lake to happy, smiling faces... happy to see us, and happy that the power had clicked on minutes earlier, making Christmas Dinner a much more likely occurrence!

Before we could unload the car, Owen was lost to Grandma's play room. We experienced a "Christmas Miracle!" with him and Calla playing nicely together without adult supervision.

 Presents for the kids before dinner... more Pirates!
Calla opened an assortment of imaginative play items - cleaning supplies, tool box, and this shopping cart that probably made 100 laps around the house. She was in great spirits and it was fun to spend some auntie time playing our own version of Uno Moo.
Josh came down with a nasty Christmas Cough and spent the day mostly in my lap with mouth clamped shut.

We convinced Conrad that those that give gifts with small parts are responsible for helping put them together. =) Thankfully, he was happy to help. These two spent at least an hour diligently working. Probably my favorite Christmas moment to observe the generations working together...
...and see that they were still all smiles at the end!

After getting the (exhausted!) kids down for the night, we shared our adult gift exchange. Everyone seemed thrilled with their gifts, with good laughs, and stories all around.

The kids snuck in some gingerbread house decorating before Ryan & Sara headed home and we got to relax at the lake for a day of decompression.  The kids got some quality Aunt Kate time before she heads back to Alaska and Scott and I were introduced us to Settlers of Catan, which may prove fatal to any chance of remaining evening productivity...

We capped off our Christmas travels with at 12 hour trip home.  This time, not due to weather, but our many stops - rest areas, Portland houses, kids new child care, outlet malls, "um, I guess I do need to pee" stops on the side of the road, slow pizza dinner, and then driving rain over the pass. Four weary travelers happy to be home in our own beds and marveling that it may have been the last time we make that long drive for the holidays.  A 4 hour jaunt up from Portland next year is sounding pretty easy!

Christmas 1

Thanks to the mild "winter" we've been having in the northwest, our Christmas trip to Seattle was without many of the usual stresses and adventures. Plus, our kids seem to have matured into easy travelers, and this trip was the first in 4 1/2 years that did not require any baby gear or special sippy cups.  Our boys are content in sleeping bags on the floor and Josh even watched 15-20 minutes of movies during our long drives.

My parents treated us to an evening of the Christmas sights in Bellevue - Lights at the Botanical Garden, dinner downtown, and then fighting the crowds to see the Snowflake Lane. Josh was enamored with the drummers and it was a great way to enjoy the big city Christmas spirit that we can't get in Bend.

Christmas Eve started with our Montessori Party - FOUR young kids in the mix this year really shifted he focus from our generation to the next.  It was great fun to meet Tyler and Kristen's son, William and Kristen and I were able to share the antics of busy, busy toddler boys. Colin and Erin also arrived with Claire after this picture - first time meeting her as well, as she was just days old at Christmas last year.  We missed Ryan and Ashley who were both in Cali with their in-laws, but Deanna brought Oma instead and she entertained us with stories that are only earned by being in amazing health and mind at 86!

 For our Elves' Party, the Elves left us a new game - Zingo! Nana and Papa also broke out new light sabers...

Leaving treats for Santa...

 After tucking the kids in, we embarked on some classic games - Taboo, Pictionary, and Anomia, with Todd being the clear winner in all three.

The next morning: Checking to see if he came...

Santa left Owen these Hot Wheels tracks and Josh a Mr. Potato Head family, though the play patterns over the last week indicate that the Hot Wheels track would have been more than enough gift for both of them to share.

We also began what Owen eventually dubbed, "A very Pirate-y Christmas!"  Swords for both boys, a massive playmobile ship and a pirate book for Owen, smaller ships, more swords, and a sticker book later in the day at the Lake.
Since we packed all our gifts up to Seattle this year, we were all overly showered with gifts. Scott opened a new rain jacket, bike accessories galore, clothing and UW swag. I was lucky with two boxes of tall brown boots, clothing, new crock pot, cook books, and my favorite chocolate. The boys found stockings full of art supplies, remote control robots, and other great toys. Love those PJ hugs on Christmas Morning!