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Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Wintery Fun

The other day we actually got some snow.
Not saying it was anything substantial but it was
enough to get our girl all excited...
She put on her snow bibs and squeezed herself
into last years snow boots and begged to go outside.

I was having none of it myself, it was too darn cold!

She kept saying "I need skis!! Call Grandma!"

I tried to explain to her we would need a bit more
snow then a light dusting to actually be able to ski.
I don't think she was buying it.

She did get cold pretty quickly and decided she was
ready to be warm again.

There is nothing more warming then jammies
and a tutu, don't you know...
Her shirt says "My heart belongs to Daddy"

Pretty cute

Ava is getting really excited about snow and winter
and all things Christmas.

Everywhere we turn she sees lights and trees
and Christmas type things.

And when you get this girl going on Christmas,
she starts getting really excited about her birthday too!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Thanksgiving at the Beach

Ava has been chomping at the bit, waiting oh so
impatiently for Thanksgiving to be here.

She knew we were heading to the beach to be with
our family. She loves spending time with our family.
We all do, they are pretty amazing.
It's funny how Ava's loyalty shifts, first it seems like the adults
are her favorite, then Abby arrives and all of her attention goes to Abby.
Then an even shorter person arrives, like Colton and it all switches to him.
Ava LOVES playing with Colton. I'm not saying they get along
famously every minute, but she forgives their issues, putting the
bigger picture first. One minute she will come tattling on Colton
saying "He is being really mean!" We offer for her to play with us
instead and she says "No, he is a little bit nice too,
I'm going to play with him"

Two turtles:
There was a lot of Hide & Seek happening
Tiffani & John peeling potatoes
Relaxing
Ava takes over the photography for a few pictures,
here is Chris & D'Auna
Jessica, Me & a WHOLE LOT OF NORAH
Cute!
Ava loves her Auntie D'Auna & Uncle Chris
Don't they look like they would make great parents?
I'm not here to give up other peoples news,
that may or may not be a tiny baby sock in their hands.
Ok, I give,
I AM SO EXCITED!!! THEY ARE HAVING A BABY!!
This means that next year at this time we will have three new
babies in the mix! (Our good friend Rhi is pregnant too)
I can't wait to see if they are having a girl or a boy, it would
be so cool to see my little niece wearing Ava & Norah's clothes,
that would just warm my heart. But if they have a boy that will
be super fun too, just can't wait to find out!!

Either way I am just so excited to have a little playmate for
baby Norah. Chris & D'Auna will make the most wonderful
parents. I am thrilled they get to experience the overwhelming
joy of that first little baby! There is nothing like it in the world.

One big difference from last years Thanksgiving is
the shift in gaming. Last year it was all about Ticket to Ride.
We usually had 2 or 3 games going at all times.
Not saying we didn't play MANY rounds of that game but this
year if you looked around the room, everyone had out their
phones and they were playing Angry Birds.

The kids enjoyed watching.
Ava informed me that when she is older she will have a fancy
phone too and she will play Angry Birds whenever she wants.
The phones passed around the room as everyone got sucked in to
the game. It is the perfect mix of fun & frustration.
There was usually at least one table set up like this:
And another playing Pinochle
John loves his new phone so much I caught him
falling asleep with it, snuggling a few times.
Here is a picture of Ava sleeping, in traditional fashion of
tossing out her jammies as well as the deck of cards she
insisted on playing with to lure her into sleep.
We had a great holiday, packed with wonderful family,
excellent food & lots of games.

We are so thankful for all the blessings in our life &
this girl tops the list:
Happy Thanksgiving!!
Hope yours was equally wonderful!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Our Girl...

Last night my Mom & Linda, the self proclaimed "Party Sluts" came over late in the night to play games & drink wine. I love my family, as you can see, this is where I get it...anyhow the subject of Ava came up, who much to her own genes following this late night trend, was long ago fast asleep, forced bedtimes, what can you do?

After many funny antidotes about things Ava does and says Linda was encouraging me to take videos of all the crazy things that Ava comes up with. I'm not sure that is at all possible considering the fact that there are far too many moments to capture, but I suppose I could do a better job of writing them down here.

So Ava who are you at the young age of two, quickly approaching three???
Your personality is exuberant! You charm the pants off of anyone you come across. When people come over you have wonderful hostess qualities, you thank them for coming, tell them you really missed them & that you love them so much. When they are leaving you thank them for coming over and say things like "But I will miss you!" You also tell people to drive careful and come back real soon, okay? When your Dad or I leave to go to work you have always taken the time to stop whatever you are doing and walk us out. If we start to sneak off for some reason or another you will say "WAIT!! I NEED TO WALK YOU OUT!" you then inventory what we are bring with us, does Daddy have his water? Does Mommy have her phone? You are just so thoughtful. Last night you actually woke up screaming in the middle of the night from a nightmare. I went in to calm you down and you just kept screaming "But I wanted to walk you out!!" Pretty funny if you ask me.

You must do everything yourself. There is nothing that will bring on tears quicker then trying to help you do something that you have in your head you are perfectly capable of doing. This might mean everything takes MUCH longer but I have learned that I just must be really patient and everyone is happier in the end.

You can feed the dog all by yourself now, not to say Lily doesn't occasionally run you over during these efforts but you still enjoy doing it for some reason or another. You like to load and unload the dishwasher and get as involved as I let you. You think switching the laundry is fun and always want to help. While I was folding clothes the other day I had a big stack I had just finished up and you came over looking quite mischievous and pushed the whole thing over, all while laughing! This didn't go over well with me, I yelled at you and you stomped off returning to tell me how much I hurt your feelings. I promised not to hurt your feelings if you promise not to push my laundry piles over anymore, it's a deal okay? You like to dress yourself, but you still let me pick out your clothes. I will be so sad when that phase ends. You make disastrous messes all over the house and try to clean them up, this could use a little work but you are cute the way you try to help. You are still using the highchair, which is good because you are still the messiest eater I know.

You love to play play-dough and draw pictures. Cutting up paper is one of you new fun things to do. Stacking Legos is another favorite. You really want to go do something at every moment, see friends, run errands, what ever I can come up with to get you out of the house. You have turned into the little expert swimmer diving for toys in deep water and gaining confidence more and more each week.

The other night John and I went to check on you, as we always do while you sleep. We stood over you admiring you for your sweet little self. You had taken off your jammies (again!) despite how cold it was and you were falling off the bed, we moved you and tucked you back in. You opened your eyes briefly and gave us the most happy, content smile I have ever seen.

Sweet little Ava please know that you bring your father and I such joy,
we love you!!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Ava's First Time Bowling

We were going to go on a nice walk,
but even us Oregonians don't always feel like walking in the rain.
So instead?
We traded in the rain boots for these:
The smallest bowling shoes I have ever seen.

Ava was thrilled!! She had never been bowling
before but she knew right away it was something
she wanted to do...
Mom & Linda were excited too.
Ava's first try and she didn't even hit the bumpers!
Had she had any gusto in it I think she would
of gotten a strike!
Happiness!
Here we are rooting her on:
She was so proud.
She wanted to do it all herself, we had to convince her
to let us help. That ball wouldn't feel so good dropping on
her toes...
She cheered if you did well and would say
"You were robbed!!" if it didn't go your way.
Grandma & Aunt Linda, two of her favorites : )
Is it my turn yet??
She eventually got bored of bowling and moved
on to dancing all over the place.
This baby ain't no joke people.
What a wonderful way to break up the afternoon,
and with smiles like this, who can resist??

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Lowering My Expectations

My expectations for Ava are huge! I want her to do what I say when I say it, I want the response I am looking for. I want her to understand and remember what I have told her and apply it to the next situation. Is that too much to ask??

Sadly, I think the answer is yes. : )

Yesterday I had a conversation with Katharina regarding the stages Ava is going through right now. She gave me some good advice. She reminded me something that I often forget...Ava is only two years old. Is she? Are you sure? I swear she acts much older then that. But really, it is important that I remember that and give the girl a little slack. Ava is amazing, hilarious, caring, loving, helpful, fun, a true miracle and blessing in our lives.

She is also frustrating beyond belief, crazy, illogical, sensitive to a fault and deliberately annoying. But she is only two! I need to forgive her for not being perfect, not saying I should expect perfection any other year but I need to take a step back and not get so frustrated or annoyed so easily.

There are many things I can do to help us have good days rather then bad days. We will get through the rest of this potty training stuff too, it just is going to take a bit more time then I originally thought.

The cutest thing Ava says all the time? "I love my family!"

I can't really ask for much more then that.
For two, she is doing great! : )

And really? She has exceeded any expectations I ever had, she is the best!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Getting out of the house = much better!

Just as I suspected, keeping Ava a bit busier was the
key to her happiness, and consequently, my own.
Friday we got up early and headed out to meet up with
Mom, Linda and a little girl that Linda watches on Fridays.

Ava was a joy to be around the entire day.
We went out to breakfast, then took the kids swimming.
Ava blew the 5 year old away with her swimming skills.
All day I just couldn't get over this outfit,
dying over the cuteness!
Ava met a friend, Evan.
Turned instant play-date.
We still haven't figured out the other issues
but as far as constant fits, getting Ava out of the house
seems to be the answer.