Monday, June 17, 2013


Okay, last post and I think I'm all caught up for now...

Back at the beginning of my spring break (last week of March), we had my aunts and cousin up for a game weekend...when Saturday morning, I ended up taking Norah into the doctor for a high fever that wouldn't go away, a raspy cough, and ear pain.  The doctor who was on duty gave her several tests, and her RSV test came back positive (she also had a bad double ear infection).  We were given a nebulizer and instructions on how to use it, and some antibiotics for her ears.  Poor girl had to have 3 neb treatments a day for 5 days...needless to say, our spring "break" wasn't the most fun, but at least I was home already and had lots of time for snuggles and healing.  Hopefully we won't have to break out the nebulizer anytime again soon!


For my dad's birthday weekend, my parents, sister, and cousin decided to drive down to Austin, Texas to visit my brother.  Greg thought it would be fun to include me, too, so he flew me down to join them.  What a treat it was to fly by myself!  A lot more relaxing than our plane ride to Florida in January...  We packed a ton of stuff into our weekend--a fun movie/comedy experience, a comedy/variety show, water biking on the river, a duck tour, cupcake truck, and my most favorite--our segway tour of Austin.  So much fun!  I was sunburned and exhausted when I got back into Minnesota late that Sunday night, but it was worth it!  We were still in a never-ending winter funk, so it was so wonderful being in the sun and warmth for the weekend.  

I would do this again in a heartbeat--SO fun!
Greg has hands-free segway riding mastered
We got to ride right by the capitol
Water biking with Jenny and Erin

Finally--capris, green grass, and flip flops!
Home of the most delicious cupcakes!

Family craft weekend

Inspired by my trip to the "real" Craft Weekend in November, my aunts, cousin, and I thought it would be fun to have our own Craft Weekend.  At the end of April, we gathered at Miriam's for some crafts, games, freezer meal making, and even some thrifting.  Each of us picked out a craft, and we mainly worked on those on Saturday.  We made a photo board using an old picture frame, a necklace, a chalkboard painted pot for herbs or flowers, a travel toothbrush/toiletries caddy made out of a hand towel, and a table runner.  Throughout the weekend, we also put together freezer meals (each of us came up with a recipe to share)--chicken wild rice soup, steak fajitas, mini meatloaves, Italian chicken roll-ups, barbecue chicken, and 8-can soup.  It was especially nice to have these meals ready to go for the end of the school year.  On Saturday, we headed just a few miles to a cute little sale that was happening at a nearby barn--antiques/repurposed/handmade items and flowers/plants, etc.  I found a cute chalkboard/frame and some quilt bunting for Norah's room.  My dad and cousin Connor also joined in the fun, and were such a good help for watching/playing with Abby and Norah while we worked.  Abby enjoyed the little tent bed Miriam had set up for her in our room.  We will definitely have to have another craft weekend in the near future!

Finished product--my photo board
The girls and the projects
My necklace
Table runner
Travel caddy
Abby and Norah with my grandma--the girls are wearing dresses that Miriam and Mara wore when they were the girls' age
Norah crashed into the corner of a wall right before the end of our weekend...battle wounds!
Miriam/Abby, Grandma, Norah/Mara

A sweet honor

I haven't really shared this with too many people, but I was honored this year to be nominated from a parent of a former student in my class for Minnesota's Teacher of the Year.  It was such a thoughtful thing to do, and her recommendation letter was so sweet.  In no way did I think I would ever win, but I felt like I should complete the portfolio process because of the effort she put into her nomination.  It was fun to get free tickets to the Teacher of the Year banquet in Minneapolis--the Education Minnesota speaker was great, and it was fun to learn more about the top 10 finalists.  It was also an honor to be later recognized at our district employee banquet.  Shakopee had the most nominees from any other district in Minnesota this year, which was very exciting.  A coworker of mine was also nominated.  Definitely a surprise and an honor!

Mother's Day

Almost caught up...just a few quick posts that I want to write up, so that eventually, when I print the next part of our blog, all of the fun memories from this spring are here...  :)  Mother's Day weekend was pretty busy, due to the fact that we had our second garage sale (and it was another success despite the cold weather!).  My brother flew into Minnesota for the weekend, so we wanted to be sure and have a chance to spend some time with him.  He managed to get some great tickets for Sunday's Twins game, so we had Dave's parents watch Norah for us while Dave, Abby, and I took the light rail up to Target Field.  The sun was finally out, but our seats were shaded, so it was COLD!  Even so, we still had fun with my family.  The Twins didn't win, but it was fun to share the special day with Abby and my family.

I am one lucky mom!  Blessed to have my two sweet girlies in my life...

Sunday, June 16, 2013


Abby's year of preschool ended a few weeks ago, at the end of May.  Here is a picture of Abby with her favorite teacher, Miss Britt:

And with Lisa, her class's para:

We were fortunate to be able to carpool with our friends, the Guse's, this year.  The car rides with Abby and her buddy Alex were always entertaining.

Her preschool wasn't a traditional one--it met one evening each week--but it was a nice option for us since we couldn't get Abby to a daytime preschool with work.  The first Tuesday of each month was a parent night, where one of us went along with Abby and spent the first 45 minutes with her, then the last part in a special parent time.  For the May parent night, they had a pizza picnic at a local park.  Abby and Norah had a lot of fun, especially at circle time.  Mary, the parent ed teacher and also Norah's ECFE teacher, commented that she had never seen Norah sit still for so long.  She was mesmerized by all of the big kids and the songs.

Abby was sad to say goodbye to Miss Britt, since she's been her teacher for 3 years now.  Luckily, she'll be Norah's teacher next year at ECFE and Abby will be ready for bigger and better things in kindergarten!


Norah has struggled with chronic ear infections since just after Christmas, when we took her to the doctor and found out she had a double ear infection.  Since then, she's had off and on terrible ear infections, several antibiotics, including a last resort antibiotic shot.  After an awful double ear infection that wouldn't go away at the end of March, we were able to get a referral to an ENT specialist.  I took Norah to him in April, and we definitely felt like ear tubes was a good choice for Norah.  We scheduled the appointment for mid-May, and though it made me nervous, we went ahead with it.  She couldn't eat the morning of her surgery, but luckily, it was scheduled for early in the morning.  We got all checked in, and she got to run around the outpatient surgery area in her cute little (big) hospital gown).  She was being her typical happy, social self until it was time to go back to surgery.  They let her take her blanket, robot, and pacifier, but I had to leave her at the door of the operation room.  That was definitely tough, but they brought her back to me crying just 15 minutes later--it didn't take long at all, and the anesthesia wore off quickly.  She was in pretty rough shape for about an hour, but after a short morning nap, she was ready to eat and was back to her normal self.  They said she probably wouldn't have much of an appetite, but not our hungry girl!  We're happy to report that she has been ear-infection-free since her surgery, and at her re-check with Dr. Rhodes last week, he said everything looks good.

American Girl

Abby had a big surprise a couple of weeks ago...Dave's sister, Tracy, who is teaching in South Korea for her second year, sent some money for Abby's birthday to buy an American Girl doll.  This has been a big wish for Abby for awhile now, and she had been saving up some of her own money to hopefully eventually have enough.  She had no idea where we were headed when Dave's mom came up and we got in the car...even when we pulled up to the Mall of America.

Once we got into the store, she still had no clue that she was going to be buying an American Girl doll--she just walked around, admiring all of the dolls and accessories with Dave's mom.  Imagine her surprise when Dave's mom sat her down and said that she could pick out her very own doll--she was SO excited!  She knew right away that she wanted Julie, a doll that her friend Avery also had.  We had a little talk about not just doing something because your friend has, but she swore that it was the one she really wanted.  As part of her birthday gift from Dave's mom and dad, she also got to pick out an outfit.  Abby loves her new doll, Julie!

15 months

Life with a 15-month-old has been pretty busy so far!  Norah is always on the go, chasing after Sadie (her best buddy) or trying to keep up with Abby.  She started walking just before 13 months, and hasn't let anything slow her down since!  She is extremely social and loves to entertain others.  Definitely an extrovert! She is also a big talker--it's hard to keep up with all of her new words and phrases.  Some favorites:  "more" (referring to food), "down", "Sadie good girl", "ball", "thank you", "no", "papa" (grandpa), "ssss" (when you ask her what a snake says), "woof woof woof" or "Sadie" (when referring to any dog she sees), "cheese" (when posing for a picture), and many others...she tries to repeat anything we say.  She's also good at following directions, like when we tell her it's time to brush her teeth or put on her shoes.  She likes routine and organization--loves to put things back exactly the way she thinks they should go.  She still LOVES to eat, but we have found a few things she's not so fond of, like rice.  She's adventurous when we're outside--heads for the biggest slide at the park, heads for the road or up the hill when we're at home.  As busy as she is, she is still a sweetheart, and we love the moments where she'll come plop down in our laps or lean her head on our shoulder when she's tired.  She loves her "bobot" (robot lovey), "bankie", and "nigh-night" (pacifier)--it's hard to pry her away from those when she's sad or tired.  After waiting forever for those first two teeth to come in, she's now added four more top teeth that have been painful for her.  At her 15- month check-up a couple of weeks ago, she weighed in at 18 pounds, 2 ounces (10th percentile) and was 29 1/2 inches long (15th percentile).  Here are some cute pics of our favorite 15-month-old:

Norah is having a hard time growing hair (like her daddy did at that age), but we managed to put in a bow for her "Crazy Hair Day" at daycare in May.
Norah loves her new water table that she got for her birthday!
Entertainment comes easy for a 15-month-old...putting rocks into an old dog dish

Brushing teeth is a favorite way to spend her time!