Friday, February 27, 2009

Show-and-Tell, Round 15: Rameses

As we gear up for March Madness, this video says it all. Go Tar Heels!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Macie's Opinion...

Macie is obviously too young to give us her personal opinion on whether or not she wants a younger sibling, right? Maybe not...

Since she was about 3 months old, Mac has slept nearly 12 hours each night. Ivie was (and still is) the same way. I know, I know. We are well aware how lucky we are to have two wonderful sleepers! However, in the past week, Macie has decided that she needs a late-night snack. The last 3 nights, it's been 2:30a, 4:30a, and 3:15a, respectively.

The first two nights, I gave her 5 minutes or so to try to get back to sleep on her own. She didn't, and her talking got progressively louder, so I gave in and nursed her back to sleep. This morning, though, I tried to be "Tough Mommy" and literally laid in bed and listened to her for 30 minutes. After about 2o of these minutes had passed, Dale rolled over and said, "You do hear her, don't you?".

But I held my ground and didn't get up until 3:45a. This wait was intentional, of course. I know the dangers of "giving in" when it comes to this issue, particularly when all literature indicates that a 5-month old doesn't NEED to eat during the night. So the thought of spoiling her into this becoming a regular occurrence was enough to help me stay firm and not get up. (Not to mention the fact that my bed is a whole lot warmer than the glider in her room.)

Sadly, though, her talking turned into whining, and then an all-out cry. At this point, Ivie's sleep was at jeopardy, so I threw back the covers and headed to her crib.

Now, there are all sorts of reasons that this change in her sleeping pattern might mean nothing at all:

1) She could be going through a growth spurt and really IS hungry after sleeping for around 8 hours...

2) Her teeth could be bothering her. This morning, I discovered that her second (bottom left) front tooth is cutting through (for the baby book that I haven't yet started, this occurred on 2/26/09, at 5 months and 16 days old).

3) She could still be recovering from the nasty cold she had over the weekend that decreased both her appetite and her quality of sleep.

4) She could be ready for more "solid" food to help pack on the calories.

But, while all these are legitimate possibilities, it ALSO could be that Macie is trying to tell me that she doesn't want a younger sibling. Because if she did, surely she would know to continue being the healthy, good-sleeping, extremely-and-unbelievably-low-maintenance baby that she's been the first 5 months of her life. Because it's THAT sort of baby that makes me think I want to have three children. Too many more of these late nights might send my number into a downward spiral...!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

How Many Kids? Ivie Weighs In...

In my "25 Random Things" post, I mentioned (#3) the good-natured debate that Dale and I are having about how many kids will make our family whole. Today, on the way home from school, Ivie randomly weighed in...

Ivie: Mommy, Macie is my SISTER.

Mommy: Yes, Ivie, she IS your sister!

Ivie: Samuel [Ivie's classmate] has two brothers. At home.

Mommy: Yes, he has two baby brothers, just like Macie.

Ivie: Mommy, I want a brother.

Mommy: You do?!?

Ivie: No, Mommy, I want TWO brothers. Like Samuel!

So Dale wants to stop with two kids, and Ivie wants two brothers. Maybe we can meet in the middle somewhere. Like, say, with one brother for Ivie and three total kids?!?

So the debate continues, but at least we know where Ivie stands!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Show-and-Tell, Round 14: Nursery Rhyme Books

Ivie's been on a book kick lately. And she also loves to find multiple things that relate to each other so that we will let her take more than one item to Show-and-Tell!

Both of these interests worked out for her this week in her choice of her "Let's Play" and "Let's Move" board books. Both are chock-full of various nursery rhymes related to their active titles. A couple of her favorites are "This Little Piggy" (for the wee-wee-wee-wee-wee part, of course...), "Ring Around the Rosie" (because she likes to go in circles and fall down!), and "The Itsy Bitsy Spider" (for the hand motions and occasional tickling sessions).

Saturday, February 21, 2009

The Very Best Place for a Nap

Macie is an amazing sleeper during the night. She goes to bed around 7:30p, and doesn't generally wake up until at least 6:30a. And it's not at all odd for us to have to wake her up to get her ready for school at 7:00a. From what I gather through conversation and online articles, 11 hours is pretty good for a 5-month old. I'll certainly take it.

Naps, however, are not Macie's cup of tea. But they are very predictable. She falls asleep easily, but wakes up irritated 30 or 40 minutes later. At most. The only exception to this is at school, where Miss Linda, Miss Joan, and Miss Marie can sometimes get her to nap in the crib for upwards of an hour and a half. I think it's because they're more willing to practice tough love and let her cry herself back to sleep!

Dale and I have found only one place that we KNOW will lead to a long nap - the swing. So any time Macie needs a long nap, particularly on the weekends, we know exactly where to put her. This works great when we're at home. But not so great when we're visiting Grandma (as we are this weekend), because it's not feasible to put the swing in the car and take it along (though I must say I've given it some thought).

So Macie's naps at Grandma's take place in her Pack-N-Play. And they usually only last 30 minutes. Thirty minute naps and a sick baby are not a good combination, as Dale, Grandma, Ivie, and Grandma's friends (Jewal and Ann Haynes) witnessed first-hand this afternoon.

When I left the house on a Shell's lunch run (a local BBQ joint that we frequent often in Hickory), Macie was happily sitting on Ann's lap. But when I returned 20 minutes later, Dale exclaimed that they were so glad to see me, as Macie had started screaming soon after I left and hadn't stopped. Grandma had her in the living room trying to calm her, but, from the sound emanating through the closed door, nothing seemed to be working.

Her two previous naps had only been 30 minutes each, and her eyes still showed that she wasn't feeling up-to-par. By the time I got back, she had reached the point in her screaming that she couldn't get herself to stop. The bottle didn't work. Bouncing around the house on my shoulder didn't work. Going outside didn't work.

Finally, I sat down on the couch and hoped that watching Ivie play would calm her down. It did (she sure loves her big sister!). After she had stopped wailing for several minutes, her eyes started to gloss over. Minutes later, she was asleep, sitting straight up on my lap, head resting in my palm.

The rest of the clan headed off to the recycling center at 1:30p, leaving the two of us alone on the couch in a quiet house. I rearranged myself to settle in for Macie's nap, which I hoped would last longer than 30 minutes. The recyclers returned at 2:30p, Ivie headed to her room for a nap, and Macie slept on, not at all fazed by the return of activity...

It wasn't until 5:15p (no joke) that Macie awoke from her winter slumber. During her nap, I had snoozed for about 15 minutes myself, finished off the latest Grisham book that I've been trying to read since Macie was born, and watched nearly all of the Tar Heels basketball game versus Maryland. There were several times during the marathon nap (appropriately described, since I, in my running heyday, could have almost RUN a marathon during it!) that I considered waking Macie up, worried that she wouldn't be ready to go to bed again for the night at 7:30p. Not to mention that I desperately needed to go to the bathroom, pump, and move my left arm.

So why didn't I just wake her up and save myself from the "misery" of not moving for 3 hours and 45 minutes straight? I claimed out loud that it was because she needed the sleep to fight off her cold. Which is certainly an accurate statement.

But you parents out there know the real reason... The truth is that there's not much better than staring at the sleeping face of an infant. And the very best place for a nap is on Mommy's chest. For both baby AND Mommy.

I loved every minute of it. All 225 of them, actually.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Macie's First Tooth

It's official! Macie is cutting her first tooth (mark it down: 2/19/09, at 5 months and 9 days old). Yesterday when I got to school, I got the unfortunate news that Miss Marie had just checked Mac's temperature, and it was 101.4 degrees. And, of course, there is a tummy bug making its way through their room at school (5 kids were out the day before). I hoped going into the day yesterday that breast milk might get her through it unscathed (since that is supposed to be a benefit of nursing). Not sure why I still think it might be true, since Ivie was sick A LOT during her first year... Oh well.

After getting Macie home, I fed her a bottle (8 ounces, which she downed quickly) and also gave her a container of carrots. But she still seemed hungry, so she had another 2 ounces of milk. Hungry girl - the fever had apparently not affected her appetite! It was after this second round of milk that I felt in her mouth for the hint of a tooth (which I've been doing daily for a couple of weeks, as Ivie got her first tooth between 4 and 5 months, so I figured it was coming soon). And there it was! Bottom right front tooth popping right through!

So congrats, Macie! And I'm sorry you're too sick to celebrate. Let the teething begin. Maybe we'll sport the "Take my word for it. Teething BITES." onesie today...

Wednesday, February 18, 2009


Story time before bed is usually Daddy's time with Ivie, while I nurse Macie. But since Dale was out of town the last five nights, I've gotten the pleasure of snuggling with Ivie in her rocking chair for "two books" each night. Like most toddlers, I guess, she gets into ruts with her book selection, choosing the same ones over and over for nights on end, before finally deciding to mix it up.

Well, the book-of-choice these days is "365 Stories for Little Girls". Ivie calls it "Mommy's book", because it happens to be one of the ones that got taken out of her room after the book episode I described in my "Respecting Books" post in November. So when she found it in my hiding spot in our guest room a few weeks ago, she brought it to her room and added it back to her bookshelf. I think she's learned her lesson about taking care of books, so we're using it as a test case before bringing any of the others back into the rotation.

As the title describes, this is a really thick "big-girl" book (read: paper pages, not board) with a lot of stories (365 to be exact, though some of them are short poems). Not a good bedtime book, because there's obviously no way that you can read it all before bed, even though Ivie really tries to get you to flip through one page at a time, as you can with her other toddler board books. I have to draw the line at reading 8 pages of a Table of Contents!

Anyway, the past five days were my first experience with trying to read this book before bed in a manner that was both appropriate in terms of time spent, as well as sufficient to meet Ivie's specific demands as to how books should be read before bed. I must admit that it's a bit overwhelming. How in the WORLD do you read to a toddler a book that is written for school-aged children who can actually sit still and listen while you read hundreds of words on each page?!?

My solution will not surprise you. You DON'T. Instead, you pick a sentence or two on each page, preferably ones that include some action. Or you describe what is in the various pictures (thank goodness there are at least pictures in this book - try reading the New Testament to your child from one of those mini-bibles when she chooses it off of her bookshelf at bedtime!).

But even taking this route is still overwhelming sometimes. There were more than a few times in the past several days when Ivie would turn the page and wait on me to start reading. If I wasn't quick enough in deciphering how I could make the page make sense in 3 sentences or less, and, thus, remained quiet for longer than she deemed suitable, she would exclaim, in an exasperated voice, "Mommy, TAAALK!". And, to make it even better, the word "talk" came out of her with a little southern accent (not sure where it comes from) and she looked at me expectantly with her eyebrows raised. And if she was really annoyed, I was even lucky enough to get a slight roll of the eyes.

Something about that just makes me laugh.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Show-and-Tell, Round 13: Purrcy

On the Friday before Valentine's Day, it's appropriate to take a Valentine's-themed stuffed animal to Show-and-Tell, right? Thankfully, Dale is well-known in our household for being a sucker for the Hallmark stuffed-item-of-the-holiday... You know, the type that sing, talk, laugh, etc. A couple of these have been Show-and-Tell items before (see Halloween Spooky Tree and Grinch).

Speaking of Hallmark, my husband might be the only man on this earth that has his own Gold Crown card, and had it before he got married. I think it's about 20 years old - definitely the first style of card that came out. And he gets more reward coupons with it than I do. He's a "card man" (one of the many things that I love about him). He also insists on sending me flowers every Valentine's Day, even though every year we have a discussion about how I would prefer to save the money and spend it on something that lasts more than a week. But I digress...

So this Friday's Show-and-Tell item was Hallmark's very own Purrcy, a pink lion with a red heart mane. It laughs when you squeeze its paw, and whines when you pull its tail. Very clever.

Two pictures of Purrcy this week as a Valentine's Day treat. One with Ivie, and one with said flowers. Thanks, Sweetie! They're beautiful. And still alive... For now...

Happy Valentine's Day!

This morning, Macie woke up at 6:15a. On a workday, this would have been just fine, since I would be ready to get up anyway. But someone should have told Macie it was SATURDAY. I let her talk to herself in her crib until 6:40a, when I had finally convinced myself that she was not going back to sleep.

After nursing her, Macie and I headed back to my bed for a bit of lounging before Ivie woke up. We engaged in some fascinating ring play (fancy name for putting a bunch of links together and letting her chew on them) for about 30 minutes. At this point, it was 7:30a, and Ivie had still not woken up. Then Mac started rubbing her eyes and, 5 minutes later (7:35a), she fell fast asleep holding my hand. Very sweet. Not to mention that I thought that I, too, might be able to steal a quick early morning nap. Double sweet.

A mere 5 minutes later, I heard Ivie talking in her room. It sounded like she was reading her "Best Friends" book, as I heard her saying "Lady and Tramp, Lady and Tramp" over and over. Knowing that she was just seconds from calling my name, I ruled out all thoughts of a nap. Macie, on the other hand, was still sleeping soundly.

Turns out that Ivie continued to read her book to herself without calling my name for 35 minutes! Amazing. And for all 35 of them, Macie was sprawled out sleeping next to me and holding my hand. I was lying there contemplating what a great start to Valentine's Day this was. Really! It was a bit surreal, kind of how I would have scripted it had I known that it was REQUIRED to start with Macie waking up at 6:15a.

At 8:15a, after a 40-minute nap (typical), Macie rolled over, opened her eyes, and gave me a huge smile. Ahhhhhhh, her face said, what a great nap! So the two of us got up and went into Ivie's room. And were greeted with a hearty, "Good MORNING!" from Ivie. I told her Happy Valentine's Day, and she said, "Happy Tanentine Day, Mommy!".

And so our day was off to wonderful start.

Now for the part that makes this sound more like a Herman family story and less like a fairy-tale...

Since Ivie's totally in big-girl underwear during the day now, we haven't purchased diapers for her in a while and are using our left-over, much-more-expensive, Pull-Ups at nighttime. However, we have not yet required that Ivie give up her habit of drinking a crazy amount of water during the night (I got called into her room on a refill run at 1:15a this morning). Drinking 2 sippy cups of water, not waking up for 12 hours, and wearing less-absorbent-than-diapers Pull-Ups are not a good combination...

As Ivie crawled out of bed after her exclamation of holiday wishes, I, out of the corner of my eye, noticed that her sheets were slightly discolored. The second, and more careful, glance proved my suspicion to be true. She'd wet through the Pull-Up, through her pj's, and onto the sheet. Thank goodness for the plastic mattress cover.

So my fairy-tale Valentine's Day morning turned into a morning of changing Ivie's bed while the girls played together in Macie's crib. Guess it was time to switch out her sheets, anyway.

Happy Valentine's Day, everyone! Here are a couple of Valentine's Day pics for you. Daddy, after your meetings, be sure to check out the pictures on the blog. The last one is especially for you. We love you!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

25 Random Things: Mommy

I signed up for Facebook over a year ago. My intention, at the time, was to use it ONLY for work purposes (for the occasional time when I needed to check on some of our student-athletes). Anytime anyone would attempt to "friend" me, I would warn them that I NEVER checked it or spent any time on it, so it was probably a waste of their effort.

Then, at the request of one of his customers, my husband got a Facebook page. And started adding friends. Who then saw that I had a Facebook page, too. And it was all over. I couldn't fight it. I now have 156 friends (which is a pretty small number compared to a lot of folks). And I admit that I actually enjoy keeping my "status" updated and checking out what those 156 people are up to.

One of the latest Facebook crazes is writing what they call a "note" with 25 Random Things about yourself. Then you send it to several friends so that they can read/learn about you. I've been "tagged" on several of these notes, and the peer pressure finally got to me. So today I wrote my own list of 25 Random Things.

After sharing them on Facebook, I thought that it might be a good blog post. And then I got an even better idea! Why not have our extended family members each do their own lists of 25 Random Things so that I can post them to my blog as "Guest Blog Entries"? Wouldn't it be great fun for Ivie and Macie to someday be able to read random things about their extended family?

So I've got my Mom and Dad working on their lists. And I'm officially using this blog entry to notify my siblings of their duty to start theirs, as well. (Also a good way to find out if they actually READ my blog.)

So, without further ado, here is my list of 25 Random Things. And stay tuned for future posts spotlighting our family. This should be fun...

1. I eat like a 3-year-old. One of my favorite meals is fish sticks and macaroni. And I have a really bad sweet tooth.

2. I hate spending money, but love to get new things.

3. My husband and I are currently in an on-going, good-natured, and pleasant debate about how many children we want to have. I say 3, he says 2...

4. I'm very anal and organized when it comes to work - it helps me to be more productive and efficient. I USED to be anal about my household. But having a toddler and a baby has effectively squashed that. For example, you can find a handful of used/torn/no-more-stick stickers (Disney characters, primarily) in pretty much every room of our house. On the ground. And I step right over them like they don't exist.

5. I love that I'm still friends with all of my ex-boyfriends. Didn't have many, so that makes it easier.

6. My biggest fear is of something happening to my kids or my husband.

7. I used to belong to a gym and lift weights religiously. The last day I went to said gym was the day before my wedding. Haven't been back since. Pretty sure the "morning crew" (those of us who worked out at 5:30 am when the gym opened) wonders to this day if my husband kidnapped me after our wedding...

8. I don't remember anything before the 6th grade. And the first 6th grade memory I have is of being called a boy by a substitute teacher (my hair was really short). At that fateful moment, I started letting it grow out. It's been long (long enough for a ponytail, at least) ever since.

9. Because of my experience in #8, I really don't want my daughters to have bangs. At least not until they're old enough to understand how annoying it is to let them grow out.

10. My job is about as close as I could get to being a lawyer without actually being one (though my Dad still says that he'd pay for me to go to law school). And I get to hang out around college athletics. Best of both worlds. Too bad I don't make the money a lawyer does...

11. I never thought I'd be "that mom" that pierced her daughter's ears before she was old enough to make the decision on her own. In June, I had Ivie's ears pierced at age 2, and I plan to do it again with Macie at the same age!

12. I'm an extreme introvert. But those who know me only from work probably wouldn't believe it (I'm pretty outgoing there!).

13. I love to read, although I don't have much time for it these days. In fact, my parents say that when I was in elementary school, the worried about me because the teachers said I would take a book out to recess and sit in a corner by myself and read.

14. I used to bite my nails. I finally overcame that, but now I'm obsessed with my cuticles. Nervous habit that I hope I don't pass on to my daughters, as it is the biggest thing about my appearance that I would like to change.

15. I collect Pez Dispensers. At last count, I had around 200. Someday I'll have a room in which I can put them on a shelf to display. Right now they're in a plastic bag.

16. I also collect shot glasses. But I've never tasted beer. In fact, I didn't have alcohol until my 21st birthday, when my sister took me out in Owensville and I had an Amaretto Sour. Drank less than half of it, because I was scared of getting drunk. My favorite drink now is a Strawberry Daiquiri, though it's been awhile since I've had one.

17. I can probably count on 2 hands (maybe 3) the number of times I've worn make-up.

18. The first race I ever ran was a marathon. I've since done 2 halves, and hope to be able to do them again someday (when I can figure out how to make time for daily runs).

19. I love basketball, and used to be a decent shooter. But I can't remember the last time I took a shot on a regulation goal (Dale's parents' driveway doesn't count). Now I get my basketball fill watching UNC's men's team (usually on television, since game times that work around naps and bedtimes are hard to come by).

20. I'm very proud that I was able to give Ivie exclusively breastmilk (no formula!) for the entire first year of her life. My goal is to be able to do the same with Macie.

21. I think it's really cool that my daughter, Ivie, is named after my husband's grandmother.

22. To learn how to spell our last name growing up, our parents taught us a song to the tune of Jingle Bells:

t-t-e-r is my name
Schaeperkoetter is my name!

I still sing this song in my head sometimes.

23. I count stairs pretty much every time I walk up (or down) them.

24. I won't drown, but I'm not a very good swimmer. I don't like to put my head under water - I blame it on wearing contacts.

25. For being a former college athlete, I'm not very competitive. I don't really like games (playing them, at least).

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Rolling Over (Back to Belly)

I've become a much tougher mom when it comes to officially documenting milestones. With Ivie, at the first possible sign of a new skill, the date went straight in the baby book. I was so eager for her to do new things and to "progress" along some time line that I had read in a book or online article somewhere...

Not sure if it's because I've calmed down a bit or because I've seen first-hand how fast kids grow, but I'm not so crazed about Macie meeting milestones. I know it's going to happen, and I know time is going to fly by. So she can take her sweet time, in my opinion. I'm loving everything about her in the baby stage!

I'm amazed that I'm saying this now. Particularly after thinking back to a conversation I had with my sister about her third child, Olivia, (who is 5 months older than Ivie) when it was about "time" for Olivia to start crawling. I had called Sarah (they live in Dallas) and, during the course of our conversation, I asked her if Olivia was crawling yet. Her answer shocked me. "NOOO, thank goodness! I'm not ready for her to crawl yet. Right now, I don't have to worry about her going anywhere! I hope she waits for another couple of months."

WHAAAT?!? Are you kidding me, Sarah? Ivie was only about 3 months old at this point, and I was soooo excited for her to start rolling over, and sitting up, and crawling, and walking, and climbing, and talking, and everything else you look forward to with your first child.

Fast forward to my second child. Macie is 5 months old today. And we all know that the next skill on her checklist is rolling over. Never mind that her big sister didn't roll over until she was 8 months old (talk about stressing out a new mom!). Macie has been showing signs over the past month of trying to roll from her back to her belly. But it was almost as if she was thinking to herself, just as Ivie did at that age, "Why in the WORLD would I want to roll over? I hate tummy time! Why would I CHOOSE to put myself in that predicament? That's for the birds. I'll stay right here on my back, thank you..."

Because "calm mom" has taken over, I've decided that before it goes in the book, Macie's going to have to PROVE that she's mastered the task. No accidental, one-time successes are going to make the cut this time around! I'm going to slow down time as much as I possibly can.

That's why, on Saturday morning, when I went upstairs to get Macie out of her crib after her morning nap and found her on her belly, it wasn't good enough. Nope, I told myself, the crib wedge could have assisted her in the rolling process. Not going in the book.

And Sunday afternoon, when I was playing with her on her mouse mat and she ended up on her tummy, it was quite possible that I had unknowingly assisted her. Nope, not going in the blog just yet.

By last night, Macie apparently was growing weary of having to prove that she had this rolling thing down. So in our kitchen, again on her mouse mat, she decided to end the debate once and for all. While Dale, Ivie, and I were at the table eating our Jimmy John's sandwiches (Plan B, after our original plan to make my famed chicken taco salad - without lettuce, of course - had, let's just say, "gone bad"), Macie was lying on her back doing lots of "talking". My back was to her, but I suddenly realized that she had gotten quiet. So I turned around to check on her, and, guess what? She was on her belly, looking up at me, smiling. As if to say, "SEE MOM! I can do it all by myself, on a flat ground, with no assistance from you or a crib wedge!" She then proceeded to roll over 5 or 6 more times.

Alright, Mac. It can go in the baby book and on the blog now. You're successfully rolling over before 5 months of age. Check that one off the list. If I can even find the "list", that is. I think I chucked it after Ivie waited 8 months to roll over and still turned out to be a growing, healthy little girl... Who needs checklists, anyway?

And my sister's "shocking" reaction to the question about Olivia crawling? I have a feeling I'll be saying the same thing in a few months. Pretty sure this isn't the only lesson I'll learn from my sister (aka, Super Mom) when it comes to parenting...

Monday, February 9, 2009

Rice Cereal (and the Accompanying Drama)

I'm way behind with posting this one. This video was shot nearly a month ago on January 10th - Macie's first attempt at "eating" (read: spitting out) rice cereal. She actually did better with her first time than I remember Ivie doing. But that doesn't mean we were without drama in the 4 minutes it took to shoot the video...

First of all, ignore me at the start when I clearly say (there's no denying it) that it was shot on FEBRUARY 10th (which is tomorrow!). Must have still been asleep that Saturday morning. So much for formally introducing the video. Cross "movie producing" off the list of things I want to try when I grow up. But, I digress...

You'll see in the video that it starts and stops after the first minute or so. That's because Ivie went around behind Macie's high chair, grabbed the camera, and took off with it. After catching her, I had to crop THAT part out! Apparently Ivie didn't feel as though she was getting enough attention, and the camera wasn't focused on her, which was clearly unacceptable in her mind.

When the filming picks back up again, you hear Ivie in the background saying, "Mommy, you're MAD." As well as my explaining to her why I actually WAS a bit mad, and her responding that she was, as a result, "very sad".

You then hear Ivie raise quite a ruckus in the background, as she continues to fight for attention and cries that something (I don't even remember what) wasn't "working" for her. As you'll see, in response to her crying out, I did what most mothers of two would do when trying to feed and film the baby... I i-g-n-o-r-e-d her. To which she responds, in a slow (for effect) and threatening voice, "I NOT GOING TO SCHOOL." (Note to Ivie - it was Saturday. School wasn't even an option.)

So, in summary, leave it to my almost-3-year-old-first-born to take a 4-minute video that is supposed to be entirely unrelated to her, and in which she physically appears for only a few seconds, and turn it into a blog post that is predominately centered on her! Only my Ivie...

In an attempt to garner a bit of attention for Macie, though, the cutest parts of the video are the adorable smiles that she throws my way every once in a while (she really likes rice cereal), as well as the close-ups of her face when it's squirting down her chin. This one will be fun to watch again someday... Maybe without the sound!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Show-and-Tell, Round 12: Backpack

In a quest to find a relatively small (due to the need for it to fit in our suitcase for air travel) present for Ivie to open in Missouri at Christmas time, Nina happened upon a Dora-fanatic favorite - Backpack! Ivie has a hard time saying this - she pronounces it "Pack-Ack". Close enough.

Backpack came chock-full of goodies to help Dora through her adventures: a video camera, a telescope, a compass, and, of course, Map. When you press Backpack's mouth, you hear one of several different phrases:

1. Hola, Amigo! I'm Backpack!
2. Let's go exploring!
3. Let's look through the video camera!
4. Let's look through the telescope!
5. Let's look at the compass!
6. Let's look at Map!
7. And the standard Backpack song that we all know and love...

Backpack, Backpack
Backpack, Backpack.
I'm the Backpack loaded up, with things and knickknacks, too.
Anything that you might need,
I've got inside for you.
Backpack, Backpack
Backpack, Backpack.

And because Dora is bilingual, several of the English statements are repeated in Spanish. It's a good thing they're stated first in English, since, beyond "Hola, Amigo", Dale and I don't understand even a word of the Spanish (I took German in high school/college and Dale studied French). A lot of good those two languages are doing us these days! Oh well...

Anyway, aside from the occasional difficulty with getting the video camera out of Backpack (it sure is a tight fit!), Ivie LOVES her "Pack-Ack". She likes looking at Map and planning the route to the waterfall: through the forest, around the mountain...

And maybe someday she'll understand (and teach her Mommy and Daddy) the Spanish...

Saturday, February 7, 2009


Ivie's been on antibiotics the last 10 days for an ear infection. She's gotten very good at taking her medicine twice a day. She loves that she's able to do it entirely herself, thanks to the easy-to-push dispensers from Target's Pharmacy. In fact, she enjoys it so much that there were a couple of times during this 10-day cycle that she reminded ME that she needed to take it!

Thursday was the last day of the cycle, so she didn't get any medicine all day on Friday. We didn't say anything to Ivie, assuming that she would just forget about it and move on.

Late last night (Friday), at 12:30a, Ivie cried out for her Daddy. It was a typical middle-of-the-night run for him, as Ivie often finishes her water and requests to have her bottle refilled. After filling it and returning it to her, he held her hand for a minute and then headed for the door.

As he opened the door to leave, Ivie stopped him and said, "Oh, Daddy. You forgot my medicine." And then rolled over and went back to sleep.

As Dale crawled back into bed, I asked him if everything was okay. He said yes and recounted the story for me. After we both laughed for several seconds, he simply said, "She IS her mother...".

Even in my groggy, middle-of-the-night fog, I knew that this was NOT a compliment. Apparently Dale considers me to be a bit of a nag?!?

But don't worry. It certainly didn't keep me from sleeping!


I am amazed every day by Ivie's memory and her connections of seemingly unrelated things. Those of you that watch both Franklin and Oswald on Noggin will get a kick out of this one.

First, a little background. There's an Oswald episode (we've seen it several times, so I'm sure you other parents have, too!) in which Oswald and his friends mistakenly believe that they hear a parade coming close by their homes. So they go in search of it, only to find that it's just "Tree" walking around with his radio. At first, they're very disappointed, as they had discussed on their walk their favorite parts of parades they've seen in the past and were looking forward to seeing that day. So when it turns out there is no parade, they start to scatter and head back home with their heads down. But then Oswald has an idea. Why don't they make their OWN parade?!? So they do...

So this morning, during the 8:30a showing of Franklin, Ivie had her back to the television, as she was sitting at the kitchen table playing with her "big book", which is a huge wipe-off board book with dry erase markers and magnets. She wasn't watching Franklin, but apparently she was following the story with her ears while drawing in her board book, because she, out of the blue, looked up at me and said, "Mommy, they're having a parade! Just like Oswald!". Then went back to drawing in her book.

And sure enough, I started paying attention to the show, and Franklin and his friends were, indeed, headed to a parade. Ivie's never seen this episode of Franklin before, but she sure knows about her television friends going to parades!

Friday, February 6, 2009


One year ago today, I was in the Football Center by 7:00a, as it was Football Signing Day, and the faxes had started rolling in... An hour or so later, my cell phone rang. As I pulled it from my pocket, I hoped like crazy that it was a work call, maybe someone with a random NLI question. But it wasn't. It was my mom. I knew even before answering what the news would be...

My grandma (Mom's mom), whom we affectionately called "Nana", had passed away in her sleep that morning after a short battle with Leukemia.

Nana never got to meet Macie, but Mom did get the chance to tell her that I was pregnant. I'm happy that she DID get to spend some time with Ivie, though, and I've got some pictures to show for it (a couple of which I'll share below).

I remember Nana as an amazing quilter. In fact, all of her grandkids have a quilt that she lovingly made for each of us. It was her favorite hobby, and I have many memories of walking into her house and checking out what quilt she was working on in her spare bedroom. One of my favorite quilts is the baby quilt that she specifically made for Ivie. Because I'm such a huge sports fan, Nana found some quilt blocks with a little kid playing all different sports. Perfect.

A tidbit about Nana that those of you who didn't know her probably won't believe... One thing that always made me laugh, and stupefied me at the same time, was her affinity for WWF Wrestling. Seriously. How many grandmas do YOU know that would spend her evenings watching professional wrestling?!? That was our Nana!

Just wanted to give Nana a "shout out" today. I know she's in Heaven watching over all of us.

We're all thinking about, missing, and loving you, Nana!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

"Sisters" Shirts Photo Shoot

When Macie was born, our neighbors, Brooke and Danny, gave us the most adorable personalized shirts for them. While they've worn them plenty, I had yet to get them outfitted together, at a time when I could concentrate on taking some pictures! Since time is running out on Macie being able to fit into hers (it's a 6-month onesie, and I've already moved her closet to the 6-9 month clothes!), I knew the clock was ticking... So this morning, I finally succeeded in getting them both dressed, situating them on the couch, and snapping a few pictures of them in their shirts before Macie spit up on hers (which she did, about 3 minutes after the photo shoot ended!).

So here are a couple shots. I'm a huge fan of black and white, but I'll include a couple of color ones, too, just so you can see how adorable the shirts are!