Saturday, February 28, 2009

Good-bye, February

I'm not sad to see you go. You must be my least favorite month. This February was marked by almost three weeks of the sniffles, ear-infection, coughy-cough for Zane, followed by sniffy-sniffles for Kevin, Nora and I. Yuck! Fortunately I think everyone is all better now.

Nora decided she didn't like sleeping through the night and prefers to get up once or twice. If there's anything consistent about Nora, it's that she's unpredictable. I'm so glad we're out of the 0-3 month stage. It is a hard stage for me. When she is happy it is the sweetest thing, but when she isn't happy, well, there's just nothing anyone can do. She's also decided she hates her car seat and she will no longer take a bottle. I guess we won't be going on any dates without Nora or any long drives with her any time soon. However, she's decided she does like the bouncy seat (even more than before). She does like the mobile. She does like her play-mat, and as long as she's not tired she likes her Bumbo. Still, with all of that she is a lot of fun. She's becoming more alert, talkative and active. She is beginning to grab things and everything she grabs gets stuck in her mouth. Everyone has to pinch her cheeks or rub her hair.

Zane continues to love books, balls and cars. He is learning so many new words but he has most recently learned that the word "no!" can be a powerful word. It almost makes me shudder sometimes when he says it the way he says it. I don't have to ask where he learned that. He also really likes to say "uh-oh" over and over. His favorite books this month are all the "David" books "Go, Dog. Go!" (or "Go, Go" as Zane says) "Are You My Mother," and "The Tooth Book." He loves to watch himself on video and constantly says "a-key, pease" (again, please) each time a video clip finishes. He still enjoys going to the Children's Museum.

Zane, Nora and I enjoyed a trip to the new pool at the community center during "preschool" swim time. It was perfect. There were just a handful of pre-school age kids and their parents. The pool was fantastic. It has a large shallow area for the little ones with a little slide, a lazy river, a big tube-slide and of course a deep end. Zane was resistant at first. He's never quite sure of new things. So after I dragged him onto the pool deck, I just left him there and went and sat in the water with Nora. She LOVED it and eventually Zane decided that it looked like we were having fun. He especially wanted to try the little slide they had, so once he got in he had a blast and didn't want to leave.

I have become quite the book reciter. Who knew that becoming a mommy meant memorizing books without even trying. Just ask me, I can tell you "The Bike Lesson," "The Tooth Book," "Are You My Mother?" or any "David" book. That's about my greatest accomplishment of late. I have started training for my half-marathon and I am OUT OF SHAPE. I'm so glad I recruited Joey and Adrienne Peacock and Ariana Evensen to do it with me. Otherwise, I'm sure I would quit. Adrienne really pushes me and I'm so glad. Yesterday we ran four and a half miles.

Kevin found out he didn't have to take the class he was taking so he dumped it and got his tuition refunded and we've had him home a little more, yea!!!! He's started helping an undergrad with a project instead, and of course that's fun and easy for Kevin. He went on a camp-out with the scouts to the coast and they had a good time. He's always trying to think of another project to improve the house. He found another spot to add shelf storage in our garage so we can add 44 more #10 cans for food-storage. He enjoyed working on that and having Kevin help him.

So, with that I say goodbye to February. Good-bye long, dark, cold nights. Good-bye colds and illnesses. Good-bye 0-3 month old baby. Hello daylight savings time! Hello 3-6 month old baby! Hello pink blossoms on my trees and tulips budding out of the ground! Hello March, hello Spring!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Four dollar find

I did a little shopping at Deseret Industries (check out this thrift store on 82nd avenue, Portlanders). Zane found a lawn mower he couldn't do without. We've taken this baby on many a long walk around the neighborhood this week. Hopefully he still love to push a mower in about ten years. I'm glad a $4.00 toy could find a new life and make my boy so happy.

Rose Garden Playground--February 16

Kevin had Monday off so we decided to take advantage of the free admission to the Japanese Garden. When we got there it was PACKED and there was nowhere to park so we drove a little farther down to the Rose Garden Playground. We had a little picnic and then let Zane play for a bit. This is an awesome playground. We will definitely go back again.

Fun with G&G PIckup and J&J--February 15

Sometimes we forget to take pictures of Grandpa and Grandma Pickup with the kids, just because they live so close. Last week, Grandpa and Grandma Pickup and Jennifer & Jessica came over for a brief visit. Zane had a lot of fun chasing with Grandma and reading stories. Nora conked out right after they arrived. You would think we would see them more often since we live so close, but I guess we all just get busy. Jennifer and Jessica are going to BYU in the fall and we are sure going to miss them. We all love spending time with these people!


Little Miss N. is three months old!!! It has gone by so fast. She is such a little sweetie. She loves to sit up and to watch her big brother. She is cooing a lot and smiling and squealing. Every once in a while I'll coax a giggle out of her. She has been waking up a bit more at night, but she's had a cold, so maybe it will improve again. We love having her in our home. It's fun to watch her grow.

A couple of random pictures

Zane working hard at The Children's Museum
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Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Roll over, roll over. . .

Nora rolled over from her belly to her back twice yesterday. Of course, once I got the camera to take video footage, she decided she was done with that. Zane was so proud of her he decided to give her a kiss. Zane likes to share his toys which means that he places a block or a car right under her face. You can guess what happens when her neck gets tired from holding her head up.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Weather, illness and other tidbits

We've had strange weather here lately. Saturday it was so warm we opened all the windows for most of the day. I love those days, after months of indoor air, when you can just air everything out. Yesterday it snowed. Early last week we had a nice enough day that we could go outside and play at the park. Yea! Nora slept most of the time, but Zane had a great time finally getting some fresh air.

Unfortunately, this is how we spent most of the next day:Poor Zane had had a little cold for a week. On Wednesday he was burning up, so after calling my mom I took him to the doc and found out he had an ear infection in each ear. He spent the whole day either in my arms or on the couch or in his bed. He was so sad. He just layed on the couch and whimpered with big tears rolling down his cheeks. Break my heart! Nora seemed to know he needed extra attention because she slept most of the day. What a nice sister.

Thank goodness for antibiotics. After just one dose and a good nights rest, Zane was much more happy and energetic. He loves playing with Nora, and she loves having a big brother.

Little Nora just gets better every day. She's still sleeping very well. She seems to be growing well. She smiles so easily and is beginning to giggle, just a little.

Friday, February 6, 2009

It's Always Fun When Grandpa Comes, Hooray!

We were so happy to have a visit from my mom and dad last week. I wish we lived closer to them, or they lived closer to us. Ahhh, some day. . . . We had a great visit with eating, playing and shopping so Grandma, the bargain shopper, could spoil everyone. She got Nora this cutie dress for something like $7.00. Too bad Grandma's trying to hide behind Nora. Everyone says Nora looks like my mom.
Of course, Grandpa and Grandma always bring lots of laugh and fun. Zane especially enjoyed this Play-Doh war with Grandpa, while Grandma kept the ammunition coming.

We love you and miss you already! Come back soon!

Fun at the Children's Museum

Grandpa and Grandma Pickup gave Zane a membership to the Children's Museum for Christmas. This is a sanity saver for Mom and just a good old time for Zane. I've been trying to go every week and Zane loves it. Right now they have a "Bob the Builder" exhibit. Zane likes to play in all of Bob's equipment. He also likes to play in the Dig Pit and the hospital. What a fantastic gift for both me and Zane!

January News

In order to make compiling our annual history a little easier, I thought I would steal a trick from Kristi and start writing monthly updates to include other news that wasn't in our blog.

January has seen a few changes in our house. Starting with the littlest one, I think we've seen the most change. Nora has gone from being a baby who screams and cries from about 9 pm until 2 am to being a baby that goes to bed between 8 pm and 9 pm and then I don't hear from her until about 5 or 6 am (knock on wood). She also is finally taking good naps during the day as well. This is really a treat for me, as I really don't function very well without my sleep. I'm not sure what the trick was--it could be that her stomach is not bothering her since we put her on some medication for reflux, it could be that she's using a pacifier some, it could be that she has just matured. However, I think it's because Kevin got tired of having a cranky wife and prayed earnestly and the Lord answered his prayers. She is growing very well. She was 12 pounds at her two month appointment. She is little Miss Smiley. It doesn't take much to get a big grin out of her. She loves her bath and could stay there all night. She doesn't like getting out of the bath, though. It's always a challenge to see how far we can get into her jammies before she starts screaming. Right now we are able to get her diaper on and sometimes the lotion. Her favorite place to hang out is on the bathroom counter. That's great for me because I can just lay her there while I'm getting ready for the day. However, she is getting far too close to rolling over and I've had a couple of close calls, so I guess I'll have to be done with that trick. She loves to watch Zane and he loves to give her hugs and kisses.

Zane has also made a lot of growth this month. He is getting use to sharing Mom's time and loves to love his baby sister. He is busy, busy, busy. He does a pretty good job at entertaining himself most of the time, but sometimes he still really wants his Mamma. He learns new words every day, it seems. I think he has about 50 words right now, but his favorite words are "car" "woof-woof" and "Dadda." Within the last month he has become really interested in singing songs that have actions. He loves to sing "Itsy-Bitsy Spider" "Monkeys Jumpin' on the Bed" "Popcorn Popping on the Apricot Tree" and "Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes." He loves cars and books. His favorite books are "The Bike Lesson," "One Fish, Two Fish," "I'm Trying to be Like Jesus" and "Go, Dog! Go!" and David books. We can read those books a dozen times in a day. Zane started nursery this month. Mom was in there with him the first couple of weeks subbing for the nursery leader. He did pretty well. He has a hard time putting the toys away when it's time, but I think it is getting better. The nursery leader said he did "great" last week. He seems to love it and doesn't blink an eye when we just drop him off. Hopefully, he will continue to love it. Zane also moved out of his bed into a toddler bed. It was such an easy transition. He was so excited about his new bed. He fell out a couple of times the first week, but now has now problem. For a few nights, after he got use to his bed, we had to teach him that he had to stay in bed and not get up and play, but even that seems to no longer be a problem (knock on wood again). Finally, Zane is really enjoying spending time at the Children's Museum. Grandpa and Grandma Pickup gave him an annual pass for Christmas. We try to go at least once a week. Zane loves to be there and run around to all the different activities. His favorite places are the Dig Pit, the Hospital (especially driving the ambulance), and the theater.

Kevin has had a busy month. He is still working on his graduate degree, taking just one class per term as he is working full time. He has had class on Monday and Wednesday morning, which means he works late on those days. He has Scouts on Tuesday evenings and then usually stays up very late doing homework. He enjoyed a trip to the Winter Lodge with the scouts. Everyone had a great time tubing down the hill and playing in the snow. Things seem to be going very well and work. He is working on a very important project and there seems to be a lot of interest in what he is doing. Most of Kevin's Saturdays have been spent serving others. One Saturday he took a friend from work to the dry-pack cannery and helped him get a lot of food storage. He helped two people move. Also, we had a huge wind storm that knocked a bunch of trees down. Kevin spent quite a bit of time cleaning up a fallen tree for a family who was recently baptized in our ward. He also spends a lot of time serving his own family. Instead of coming home and watching TV like I hear so many men do, he drops his things and plays with his kids. Then he cleans up dinner dishes and helps bathe his kids and put them to bed. What a stellar dad and husband!

Holly continues to adjust to being a mom of two. Sometimes it feels like I don't accomplish anything all day, and sometimes you feel like it's a miracle I accomplished all that I did. I've had a hard time adjusting to two babies, but I try to remember that the first couple of months are the hardest. It's always so rewarding to get big smiles from Nora and big hugs and kisses from Zane. I also really enjoy watching Zane have so much fun in life. My energy has been focused on helping Zane learn to be happy and helping Nora get into some sort of schedule. I've decided to start baking all of my own bread and it has turned out pretty good. I love to read to my kids. I've decided to run a half-marathon for the Fourth of July. It is the flattest marathon route in the country (I think that's what they say). I'd love to have anyone join me. I tell people I'm running this all the time, not to brag, but because then I will have to be accountable and not back out.

We all enjoyed having Joey and Adrienne Peacock stay with us while their parents were in Arizona. Zane LOVES Adrienne so much. She can always make him laugh super hard. We really enjoy both Joey and Adrienne. They are a lot of fun and are such good kids. We played Scene It and Joey whooped us! He knows everything. He is someone you would want to have on your "phone-a-friend" list for "Who Wants to be a Millionaire?".

We also enjoyed a visit and the very end of the month from Grandpa and Grandma Tolman. As soon as Grandma walked through the door Zane ran right up to her and gave her the biggest, longest hug. I think she even tried to put him down once and he wouldn't let go. We had a lot of fun shopping, eating and playing. Zane loved the Play-Doh war with Grandpa. We were sad to see them go.

Monday, February 2, 2009

I love you Kedra Simpson!!!

Kedra came to visit a couple of weeks ago. Of course most of our conversation revolved around babies. After discussing pacifier woes I decided to try the pacifier on Nora again. So, off we trotted to Target to buy a Mam pacifier, even though I know the truly perfect mothers only use Soothies. I gently persuaded little Nora (forced through trickery) her to take the Mam and lo and behold, she sleeps! She's taken several 2 - 3 hour naps with this little thing (even though I know the truly perfect mothers never use a pacifier as a sleep crutch).

Now, sometimes she still pushes out and sometimes she gets downright mad if you try to make her take it and she doesn't want it. But for the most part, it has been a good thing. I've even put her down awake sometimes and she's put herself to sleep. She will take it sometimes but she doesn't need it. Now I get to hold her just because I want to, not only because she needs it. Thanks for being someone to talk to, Kedra, a truly perfect mother!