Friday, August 31, 2012

Fun ones

 On a lighter note, here are a couple fun shots of the girls! Ellie with "lots of ponytails" as we headed into school today, and Katie sitting up like a big girl in the kitchen sink/tub yesterday :)


Sorry, again, that I'm so blog-delinquent these days. Not enough hours in the day, etc...

The highlight (or low) this week was the trip to the doctor because of Katie's lingering cough. She's had this dang thing for over a month, but with no other symptoms (no fever, runny nose, etc). And the cough would intermittently improve and then backslide... so that's why we weren't in the doctor's office sooner. But this week it was really interrupting her sleep and so we headed in. The doctor said her chest sounded bad, and diagnosed some sort of bronchial spasm she was having. This could be caused just by the excessive coughing, or it could be an early sign of asthma. Obviously we're hoping for the first one, but we'll be monitoring her progress. She hasn't seemed to have a ton of trouble breathing, but the coughing is bad at times when she's been lying flat for a long period of time.
Anyhow, now she's on antibiotics to treat the likely underlying sinus infection (even though nothing is going out of her nose), and we have to give her an inhaler every four hours. If you haven't done it before, giving a baby an inhaler is not easy or fun. It takes both of us to hold the mask on her face and then pin her arms and hold her head to keep the medicine going in. But I do think it's helping! So hopefully our girl will be as good as new in just a few days!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Katie emails

Got an email from Katie while I was stuck working late tonight.

It reads:

Dad is super fun.


Saturday, August 18, 2012

Sweet potato

Hmm, sweet potato? Ok, I'll try it.
Nom, nom, nom

What was that? 

Despite her uncertain expression in this last shot, Katie did great on her first veggie this past week. We'll move on to something new this next week. Peas, perhaps.. or maybe squash. Expect more funny pics :)

Friday, August 17, 2012

Friday fun

Here are some random, fun shots of our smiley girls! Happy Friday!

Oops, didn't quite get that dress lined up with the head...

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Paavo weekend

While mom and dad split a marathon this past weekend... Ellie got her workout dancing at the finish line with her shadow :) Also, can't believe the weather merited a sweatshirt and pants combo. What a gorgeous morning we had this past Saturday for the Paavo Nurmi marathon, which Brian and I ran as a two-person relay. Ben and Candice ran the whole thing, and won it (!) for the 7th year and 2nd year, respectively.

After running the first half of the race, I was happy to hang out with my girls at the finish.

And Ben apparently still had enough energy for giving his niece a ride after running his 26.2 in 2:34:50.... still shaking my head in amazement.

The runners! (...and Ellie)

Back at Overlook, Katie enjoyed some play time with Grandma Lewis... or as Ellie called her, "one of the other grandmas." She was a bit confused by having my mom, Aunt Pat (my mom's sister) and grandma Lewis all around at the same time. Too many grandmas? never!

Not enough aunts and uncles (since most of my siblings couldn't make the trip), but we sure enjoyed the visit with Ben and Candice! Had a great time celebrating their wins in the race!

And grandma got some great time in with Ellie and the rest of us.

Oh, and we rounded out the trip with a stop at Paul Bunyan's cook shanty in Minoqua, where they serve plenty of greasy breakfast fare and fresh donuts. It was amazing. Great trip!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Birthday fun

Here are some tardy photos from Ellie's birthday... as celebrations have unfolded in recent weeks. These pajama ones are from her actual birthday, when we had Olivia over and attended the bedtime stories at the Zoo, where chickens were in the stoplight. Both girls were very excited to pet the chicken, and Ellie is still talking about how the chicken at one point starting flapping its wings and made "a big wind."
Of course, the other highlight was the cookies and milk snack after the storytime :)
We did candles on the cake the she and Brian baked Friday! And here's a file shot of her opening games from grandma and pa-pa the weekend before her birthday. Lucky girl!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Big and little

Ellie went in for her 3-year checkup today, along with Katie who was due for her 6-month visit. A very sad momma had to miss the whole thing because of work... boo! (Although I didn't mind missing Katie having to get a trio of shots.) Dad came to the rescue and took the girls to the doctor. What an enlightening visit it was. Turns out big sister is the little one right now. Here are some highlights:

  • Katie is a chunky-monkey. She weighed in at 17 lbs, 9 oz and is 26 inches long. This puts her in around the 85th percentile for weight... a far cry from the 15-25th percentile she landed in shortly after birth.
  • She's got the green light to move forward with veggies and fruits, so we'll start expanding out from the rice cereal she's getting.
  • Ellie is STILL at 30lbs, the weight she's been at for about 6 months now. She's also an impressive 38 inches tall. Her long, lean body explains why it's impossible to get pants that fit her right now. The 3T shorts she had on last week ended up around her knees after just a couple steps... but 2T pants look like capris... so the cooler weather season (assuming it ever gets here) should be interesting. The doc isn't worried about Ellie's weight plateau. She said as long as Ellie is eating fairly consistently and getting a variety of foods, she's fine. And we even got the green light to switch her from 2% to skim milk, so we're looking forward to buying just one kind of milk in the house... at least for the next 6 months or so until Katie arrives at the whole milk phase.
  • Ellie was also instructed by the very wise doctor to give up her thumb-sucking ways. We're hopeful that the advice will stick coming from someone other than mom and dad... but we'll see. If you see her sucking that thumb, remind her that (as the doctor told her) it might make her get germs.
  • Since we've been passing a head cold around the house for a week or two now, it was reassuring to have the doc rule out ear infections or other more serious conditions. So we all just have heads for of snot -- no worse, no better.
Serious kudos to Brian for fetching the girls and then powering through the double doctor's visit. I was grateful we could schedule the whole thing at once. And Ellie was a good big sister, telling Katie "it's OK" when she cried at shot time. So sweet.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

And, half a year...

No, we didn't overlook Katie's big 6-month mark on Friday. We even took the time to document her growth as compared to the huge tomatoes coming out of the veggie garden. (There's an almost identical picture of Ellie being measured next to Brian's tomatoes when she was a baby...)
It's unbelievable that half a year has gone by already. Slow down, Katie! xoxo, mom and dad
P.S. Better late than never... here is Katie's top 10 at the 6-month mark...

1. She's a big talker. No surprise in this family, really, but she is constantly jabbering and gets pretty loud when she's mad that you've left the room or some other slight.
2. Rolling-ish. She can certainly do it, but Katie isn't in any hurry to roll around yet. She'll get there.
3. Grabbing everything in reach. Watch out if you have her in your lap at the table, because plates, cups, utensils, glasses, napkins and everything else is fair game to this one right now.
4. Playing with her toes. Speaking of grabbing things, her toes top her list of favorites. Oh, and mom's hair. That's fun to tug.
5. Eating cereal. Katie is a champ at it. Can't wait to branch out on her menu.
6. Getting close to sitting up on her own. She still needs to work on her core muscles (ha!) but she can hold herself up in sitting for a very brief period and does pretty well being propped against stuff.
7. Smiling at her sister. Katie is a happy, smiley baby in general... but anything Ellie does is gold in her book. I love watching Katie's face light up when Ellie plays with and talks to her.
8. Pretty much done with nursing. We had a good run, but nowadays I can't even really get her nursing in the mornings. Her head cold in recent weeks hasn't helped. But she's still a healthy, growing girl... so we're not beating ourselves up 'round here. It's just the way it is.
9. Jumping. Katie is rarely happier than when she's in her jump-a-roo. She also must be enjoying the bouncy exersaucer at school, because I catch her trying to jump in the one we have here (despite the firmly planted sides). This girl can get some air, too. Video to come...
10. Absolutely amazing her mom and dad with her sweet, chill, radiant personality. What a precious second daughter we have!

Friday, August 3, 2012


I don't even know where to start. In my head I've been trying to think how to summarize Ellie turning 3 in a top 10 or some other way, but there's no way. She's grown to become a million things -- good, bad and ugly. Mostly good, though. Sure, we see that glint of mischeif in her eye pretty often these days... and I can already tell she and Katie will be a devilish duo at some point :)
 But this baby girl of ours has grown into a real. big. person.
 Of course, some things don't change. I don't think she'll ever tire of getting soaked at the zoo fountains. I'm pretty sure I have this exact same shot from last year, though maybe not the year before (since she wasn't walking that summer... but I'm sure she was just biding her time).
 This goof knows how to crack us up, even when she's not supposed to be playing with her food or throwing toys down the stairs or lifting/swinging Katie in her jump-a-roo, or... the list goes on. We still have a hard time disciplining her sometimes because she's so darn cute.

 And a ham! Ellie has a soundtrack for life. On an evening walk with her this week I had to smile as I watched her bound ahead of me, galloping and singing about the princess dance she was doing. This girl might be stage-bound.
 But then again, she could probably do anything she wants to set her mind to. Ellie is fearless, in most cases, and smart and creative and energetic. While I imagine many more rises and falls in the upcoming year, and beyond, I honestly couldn't be prouder -- already! -- of this giant of a girl we brought into this world three years ago today. Lots of love and happy birthday wishes to our Ellie-belly.