Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Apple Pie

One of my favorite things to do in the fall is make apple pie. We usually head up to Apple Hill and get apples from there, but when Cindy was here on Thursday she brought some down. The girls and I were on our own on Saturday since Ryan had a cross country meet out of town so we attempted to make a pie. The girls were interested at first, but soon decided other things were more interesting. They would check in now and again and they were both very helpful. My first pie of the season isn't my favorite and the same held true. The apples didn't taste quite right and my crust was less than tasty, so there will be another attempt soon. Hopefully we'll be able to make the trek up the hill this time, too.

First we had to cut up all of the apples. Kate had had enough already.

She came back in time to check out the final product

What a mess!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Last evenings of summer

After our field trip, the girls were exhausted. Allison is still adjusting to not napping on school days and Kate got a really short nap due to the field trip. Ryan had to stay at school late because he was running the snack bar during the Powder Puff Football Game in honor of homecoming week. After a long day I knew I had to get creative to get through the night with my sanity. We decided to take a run through the sprinklers and have dinner outside. I went a step further and cut their burgers into star shapes in hopes to get them to eat them. They aren't big burger fans unless it's In-N-Out so when we have them at home, it is usually only marginally sucessful. We made it through the night and even enjoyed popsicles to end the night. Now bring on the fall weather...PLEASE :-)

As you can tell, Kate's eye is doing a nice progression into the rainbow colors

Field trip to the fire station

Allison's preschool class took a trip to our local firestation this week. We started off the visit with a talk about fire safety to which I realized that Ryan and I have completely failed in the fire disaster preparedness area. We haven't even approached the subject with Alli so that is our homework for the weekend. The kids got a tour of the station and then they got to shoot the fire hose and finally they got to sit in the driver's seat of the fire truck. It was a long day, but the kids had a great visit and I was thankful for the trip to get us on the ball with regard to preparing for an emergency.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Are you ready for some football?

We are well into football season. Ryan, Alli and I are participating in our annual football pool with friends from Laguan Creek HS. We choose a winner for each game and at the end of the week, the person with the most correct picks takes home some money. For the past two years we have done pretty well and I think we have yet to pay our yearly entry fee because we are able to win it back soon into the season.

Last year, Alli picked the teams just based on the name. I would read the opponents and she would choose the name she liked best and it was usually the last name. So Colts versus Chiefs, she would say, "Chiefs." It was easy to manipulate her answers that way. This year however, she had caught on a bit and her response is, "Who is supposed to win." So we have started the discussion on odds, but then weeks like this one happen where we followed the odds but didn't fare very well. It's not easy to explain it to a four year old. We'll see if she trusts the odds makers next week.

Kate's first black eye

Our weekend started early with a Friday evening birthday party at Adventureland. Both girls had a blast celebrating Charlie and Henry Vance's birthdays. Kate did her best to keep up with the older kids. All night Ryan and I were sure she was going to get hurt and by the end of the night we were right. She was playing in the arcade and fell off one of the race car video games right on to her head. She had a bump on her head and her eyebrow started to swell. Little did we know that overnight it would develop into a full black eye. She woke up looking like a boxer and acting like one too. You would never know she was hurt except for the bruise. I know it will turn some pretty colors before it goes away, but she had a great time and I know we will be back to adventureland sometime soon.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Doctors and Dancing

It was time for Allison's 4 year check up Wednesday morning. She loves going to see Dr. Lloren and she is very brave when it comes to shots. This morning's appointment started off with a hearing and vision test. Her hearing is perfect and her vision is 20/30. I was surprised at the vision results because she often spots things on the road far before I do, but I guess that might say more about my vision than hers. Next up was the visit with Dr. Lloren and the discussion of shots. She was due for another MMR, but we opted not to have it since the first one resulted in Allison's first febrile seizure. She hasn't had one in almost 2 years, but I didn't feel the need to test my luck so instead of the 5 she was scheduled for, she received two shots and was very brave through them both. No tears at all. Then it was off to Target for some shopping and then Jamba Juice for our post doctor treat tradition. We then had to go straight to school where she was able to show off her war bandages and get much needed sympathy from her teachers.

At night Ryan and I are often priveledged to see "performances." Allison and Kate go off to Allison's room for about 10 seconds to practice a dance. Less than a song later, they come out and want to perform for us. Allison will be a director someday because she is very good at telling Kate just what to do. Sometimes Kate listens and sometimes she doesn't but it's fun to hear them interact and also fun to see them "perform" for us.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Time Flies

Can we really be half way through September already? We had a busy weekend and it all went by in a blurr. Ryan held a car wash to raise money for the Disneyland trip for the cross country team. Just his luck, schedule a car wash and IT RAINED. All was not lost though, he was able to raise over $500 even with the weather so it was well worth the time. The girls and I stopped by to say hello and get the truck washed in support of the cause. The afternoon was spent on a solo trip to Folsom to run errands. Kate gave me a run for my money at nap time so I needed some mommy alone time. She wasn't happy to find me gone when she awoke, but it needed to happen.

Sunday morning the neighbor boys came over for playdate. I think the boys like to come over and play with the toys, but I'm not sure they enjoy the friends that go with it. Allison really knows how to press Dakota's buttons and Kate and Dawson are at the "mine" stage. Sometimes were good and sometimes there was a lot of screaming. I finished the hectic weekend with a co-ed softball double header. Not a way to ease into the season for me or for Kate. We ended up 0-2 for the day...but everyone makes the playoffs so the joke was that there was no reason to win early.

Mondays consist of a trip to Tricks Gymnastics where Kate loves to jump and run and Alli loves to swing on the bars and just be a goof. Allison loves her teacher Megan and loves time away from Kate. Nana came over to watch Kate after Tricks so that I could spend the afternoon with Alli at school. It was a good day, but we are 3 tired girls. Sorry for the lack of pictures, but life is happening so fast these days I feel like I don't even have time to grab the camera. Until next time...

Friday, September 11, 2009

Kate's 1st Dance Class

Since Allison's first dance class in February, Kate has been dying for her own class. She's always wearing Alli's ballet and tap shoes and she often practices more than Allison does. We finally convinced the local dance teacher, Miss Lissa, to start a dance class for the little ones. Now many would say Alli's age is little, but after today's class no one would argue that these little girls are ready to dance. If I knew how to spell the ballet terms, I would tell you that the girls practiced them all. But the funniest for me was on the way home from dropping Allison off at preschool I look back and Kate is saying, "Miss Lissa (which is not decipherable by anyone else but me) Open, Close, Open, Close." And that's exactly what she was doing. During the first week: Allison's minutes practice 0. Kate's minutes practiced 2.5.

The girls getting their princess beads

Getting ready to dance with Miss Lissa

Mid twirl

Posing with Cate and Kennedy after class

Thursday, September 10, 2009

1st day of Pre-K

Allison started her second year at The Ranch and had a great time. She's going in the afternoon this year and it's already taking some getting used to. She loves the idea that she's going to school instead of taking a nap. She made little notes for all of her teachers and we spent the morining making chocolate chip cookies, so we shared those with her teachers as well. It was nice to see some familiar faces, but there are a couple of new additions to her class as well. We're all looking forward to a great year.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Thanks Grandpa and GG

We had special visitors for Allison's birthday this year. Grandpa and GG spent the weekend in Napa, but they stopped by to take Alli to lunch for her birthday. We stayed local and went to Stonehouse Bistro and had a very nice lunch. Allison loves her new dress and although I tried to talk her into saving it for the first day of school...I couldn't convince her of it. So here she is looking pretty cute as always, just a little more dressed up than usual. Thanks Grandpa and GG: for the visit, lunch, and the outfit :-)

Bubble Baths

One of Allison's favorite things used to be bubble baths. Once Kate joined her in the tub, bubble baths had to be put on hold for a bit. Tonight we broke out the bubbles once again. At first Kate wasn't too sure, but once I plopped her in the tub she had a great time. The girls loved covering themselves and specifically their hair in bubbles. They also enjoyed blowing them at each other.

Friday, September 4, 2009

A rough day

Last night I played BUNCO, and while I have lots of fun with the ladies, the night and the next day aren't always as much fun. Kate still has a really hard time when I leave and it makes for a hard night. It takes me a really long time to fall asleep on a normal night, but when I'm out and about it seems like I just can't wind down. Last night, the same was true. It was after midnight before I was even close to being able to sleep. I was tired, but not able to sleep. By then Kate was awake and crying. Even with our huge bed, I would rather she learned to sleep in her bed all night long. So my newest tactic is to go in and lay with her until she falls asleep. The night before it worked. She woke up once, I went in and layed with her for a few minutes and then back to bed I went and the next morning, about 7:30, I could hear the swish swish of the diaper walk and then "Hi Mommy!" from the side of the bed. Last night, however, each time I would sneak away...within a few minutes she was awake until finally I gave up and brought her to bed. She slept with her arms around my neck for the most of the night. With how hard it is for me to sleep normally, with Kate's arms around me and head pushing up against me, I didn't get much sleep last night.
Morning came and I was in no shape to deal but life goes on so we hit the lake. It's the one place that they will play by themselves for a period of time and I can just sit back and watch and that's what I did. Now, I'm crossing my fingers for a good night's sleep in any manner possible.

Airport Fun

One of the girls' favorite things to do is to go to the local airport in Murieta and watch the small planes take off and land. We didn't have anything to do Thursday morning so we headed to the coffee shop for treats and then parked ourselves at the airport. It was pretty quiet at first, but pretty soon we saw a small plane circling the landing strip. The girls were so excited to see the plane come into view and land. Simple things, but they enjoy those just the same and I love to see them get excited and discuss it later. It's funny to watch Kate retell the story because she gets very serious and says, "Airpane wand" (sounds like hand but a "w") and does the motion with her hand.

Here's our hero landing...

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Painting and Big Girl Beds

The girls have been begging me to let them paint since they got a new paint set for Alli's birthday. Usually the set up and clean up process lasts longer than the activity time. But, I needed a mellow day to get the house in order and to do the mounds of laundry that have accumulated since the birthday party festivities so I gave in and the girls spent the morning and the afternoon painting. Allison preferred pink while Kate preferred purple as usual. If only we had a museum to display their works of art.

I tried to capture the moment but as soon as I walked in the room she was awake.
I set up the toddler bed in Kate's room this morning and I thought we would make a slow introduction just like I did with Allison. With Alli, first we played on it and then we would read stories on it, but it wasn't until much later that she actually slept in it. Once again Kate was in a hurry. After our story and rocking time, I went to put her in her crib to which she responded, "Bed." I was surprised and a little reluctant. Kate likes to battle everything and I was not at all prepared to do this battle yet. Much to my surprise, after a little chatter and a lot of music (via the Fisher Price Aquarium) there was silence and sleep in her toddler bed. YEAH, KATE! I'm thankful for today, but I know I've just set myself up for more battles.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Happy 4th Birthday Sweet Girl!

I can't believe you are 4 years old today. It seems like it was just yesterday that you were born. So tiny and fragile. I remember those first 4 days in the NICU and it seemed like I would never get to take you home. I don't think I have ever cried so hard as I did when I walked out those hospital doors without my baby girl. I loved you tremendously from the very moment you entered this world and my love for you has only grown. I'm so proud of the little girl that you have become.
Your birthday was jam packed with fun. Shane, Logan, and Whitney came over for a morning playdate as I tried to arrange your room to accomodate your new bed. Grandpa and GG flew up and took us out to lunch and then we headed to Summerfest for our first of two nights of fun. We finished the night (much later than normal) by opening presents and singing Happy Birthday to You!

The Greatest Show on Earth

For Alli's birthday I wanted to take her to the circus. We got tickets for the first show and we started talking about what to expect. Is there really a way to explain the circus? After naps, we headed out and got to Arco Arena ridiculously early. To kill time we stopped at Starbucks and occupied our time with Hidden Pictures. Ryan arrived after a while and we went out to dinner which is not something that we often do. Off to the circus we went. Both girls were entertained the whole time. They loved the animals and the stunts. Allison's favorite was Mr. Gravity as Ryan has been discussing the topic of gravity since before she could say the word. Two hours later it was done and Kate looked up with this stunned look on her face. She signed and said "MORE." I guess that speaks for itself