Saturday, September 30, 2006

She's woken me up in many ways...

...but this one is the strangest.

Calling to me from her room at 7:45 this morning, over and over again:

"Mom, I wanna show you handstand."


Friday, September 29, 2006

Another Fun Story

This morning I walked in on Padyn spraying the sliding glass door in the family room with her water bottle. Apparently she was showing off her spraying skills to Katelyn who was lying next to the window. I had just walked out of the room for 30 seconds to get Padyn some socks and when I returned the entire window was wet. I wasn't too annoyed. It was just water on glass. But I still mildly scolded her (because it could have been my piano!) and gave her a paper towel to wipe it up. She made a few swipes, then bent down and wiped Kate's head. I was about to walk away when-wait a minute. Kate's head? I walked over and asked "Did you spray Kate also?"

No hesitation, "Yes Mommy."

I picked up little Katie-whose head was soaking wet and who was looking very confused as she blinked up at me-and scolded Padyn for spraying her sister. She was appropriately contrite as she told me that she would have to ask Kate before she could spray her.

Then I turned around so that Padyn couldn't see me trying desperately not to bust up laughing. Because sometimes, when they do things they shouldn't, it's too damn funny.

As this was occurring, I was reminded of this post The Girls' Moma posted also concerning water and her two girls.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

The Drama Queen

I realized I haven't written much about Miss Padyn lately. That could be because she is not changing as rapidly as Katelyn. It could be because lately I find myself impatient with her and her crying/tantrum/whiney drama most of the time (my shortcoming, not hers). But whatever the reason, it's time to remedy that. I don't really have a single funny story, but I can share some things she's been doing lately that make me smile.
  • She's into lip-syncing. She calls it "sing lip." She tells me to "sing lip" to Bob and Larry while we are in the car.
  • She's starting to understand landmarks. When we are on our way home from my dad's house, she'll ask me what is going to come next. What she is really waiting for are the firetrucks (we live near a fire station). The other night driving home she asked me what was next. I told her the big road called El Camino. She replied, "Then it will be the firetrucks." And she was right.
  • She understands praise and she's patient with younger children. Her little friend Baby Gan was over yesterday. He's only 15 months. He was playing with her by continually closing the toy chest she was opening for him. Instead of getting angry, she repeatedly opened it for him. Every time she opened it she would say,"See, Baby Gan. You do this. Good job Baby Gan!" She also likes to tell me good job, too.
  • She wants to cook. She always pulls her chair over to the counter so she can "help" me cook. I let her pour the ingredients into the bowl, but she isn't so hot stirring yet.
  • She knows she's growing. She knows food helps you grow. She always says that seeds make her grow bigger and bigger. She says she can feel herself growing bigger and bigger.
  • She knows the words to a number of songs now and will sing them randomly. Today she was singing some song she must have learned at school. Something about Roll Over Rover. I'm not sure what it is, but it's fun to hear her sing uninhibited.
  • She still loves reading. A few days ago she wanted to take a nap a little earlier than usual. After we read the story, she wanted me to leave the light on so she could keep reading. Normally I would have said no, but because it was so earlier, I told her she could and that I would come back in 10 minutes to turn out the light. Of course I forgot. Forty five minutes later when I finally went back in, she was asleep with the book still propped up on her stomach.
  • She constantly assures me that "I feel better, Mommy." Good thing, since I never knew she felt badly.
  • She loves preschool. She can't really tell me all she does there, but she is always thrilled to be going.
  • She's processing Christianity. She asks daily questions about where Jesus is, who is the Son of God, who's God...heavy stuff. I couldn't be happier with any other questions.

It's nice to remind myself that she's a pretty cool kid.

Sleep Training 101

I'm happy to report that Katelyn will now fall asleep on her own with minimal crying. All it took was a week of very structured sleep training. First we started with the music. A girlfriend of mine suggested playing the same soothing instrumental music everytime she goes down to sleep. So, out came the Tender Lullabies CD. The transformation was shocking. I still rocked her for a few minutes, then put her down awake. I never heard a peep from her. Was this the same child that had screamed for an hour last week? I couldn't believe how immediately this worked. I just left the CD on for the entire hour it played. I'm not yet ready to mess with going back into her room to turn it off.

Right after fixing the going-to-sleep-on-her-own problem, I decided to tackle the waking-up-every-few-hours problem. I don't think I would have been as eager to correct this behavior if it hadn't occurred two nights in a row where I had gone to bed after midnight. But when you only get 5 hours sleep, you're ready to let your kid handle those nighttime wakings on her own. So I turned the monitor off. Now before you freak out, know that I can hear Kate cry through the walls. I knew I would hear her when she was really truly hungry and ready to eat. But I just couldn't lie there listening to her babble knowing that if I just went in and gave her back the pacifier she would be quiet. I've slept better ever since. And you know what? She is going longer in the night without eating. Maybe she sleeps in later because she is staying awake longer in the middle of the night, but she immediately changed from eating at 5am to wanting to eat between 6 and 7am. And she isn't crying if she's waking up in the night because I would definitely hear her. So it appears we've fixed this problem, too.

All done? Not quite. We still have the swaddling issue. If she's going to put herself back to sleep in the night, she needs to be able to do it with her arms flailing about. So, the day after the monitor went off, the arm came out of the swaddle. Now, she does cry when I put her down awake (still with the music), but her crying has dramatically lessened from 45 minutes to about 3 minutes in 3 days. Last night and this morning when I put her down, she didn't cry at all. And this morning she had both arms out of the swaddle.

Just call me The Sleep Master.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006


Last night? Katelyn got on her knees. ON HER KNEES, PEOPLE! Just pulled 'em right up under her. Like she was ready to take off down the hallway.

I think it's time to put the safety gates back up on the stairs.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Best Video Ever

I had never heard of OK Go before Joel showed me this video. The choreography is superb, especially for a bunch of white dudes. You can't watch it just once. Enjoy.

White & Nerdy

I have had a soft spot for Weird Al ever since he did "Eat It" when I was in 5th or 6th grade. Joel, who highly appreciates Weird Al, showed me this video the other night. I don't even know the song he is doing a parody of, but I love this song and video. Therefore, I had to share the genius of it with you all.

On the Move

Katelyn can now push herself backwards. My hair has started to fall out in anticipation of her crawling soon.

Here she is, happy on her blankie, playing with her toys. Mommy turns her back for 30 seconds...

...and now she's over here.

I HEART Pillows and Other Random Photos

There has been an absence of pictures on our blog lately, so I'm making up for it today...

Padyn decided Katelyn needed to be surrounded by pillows. Then she decided she needed to crawl circles around her.

Kate warming up her vocal cords-too bad you can't hear her through the picture.
Padyn playing Peek-A-Boo with me in the closet.
Katelyn supporting herself on the table.
Auntie Christie teaching Katelyn to stand up only holding one hand.
Rolling the ball with her friend Kaylee (in Tahoe).
Bedtime story-every picture Katelyn is looking at me.
New hairstyle for Padyn-it's called two on top and one on the bottom.

Friday, September 22, 2006


I never actually thought I might inspire someone to start their own blog. It's not like I'm The Blogger Queen or anything. friend Rochelle, mommy to Padyn's friend Brandon and Kate's friend Caitlyn, decided to start her own after she saw mine. It really is that easy, folks! Anyway, check out their adventures here.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

The Counter

Did you notice I added a counter to my blog? Over there on the bottom of the sidebar? (I mean, besides you, Suz.)

I may have to get rid of it. I'm becoming obsessed with it.

I never cared before who was reading my blog or how many hits I got a day. I'm writing this stuff for myself and my kids, right? Memories and all that?

Now? That the counter is in my life? I have to check it everyday to see how many people have viewed my blog. I'm disappointed when I get less than 30 hits in a day. I wonder why Sunday was busy but Monday wasn't. Did people think I wrote something lame and don't want to come back?

I compare it with my friends who have counters on their blogs. I wonder why they are more popular than me. Are their kids cuter? Are they marketing their blog better? What do they have that I don't?

I am driving myself CRAZY.

Really, who the heck cares?

I'm just not going to look anymore.

Until tomorrow.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Happy Anniversary Riendians! Happy Birthday Suz!

Lookie what I found. While this picture was taken a bit more recently than 14 years ago (what was this, Hana's 21st at Chevys?) we didn't look that much different 14 years ago today when we all wandered into Rienda Hall at UC Davis. Susan, remember how we thought Jackie was older and couldn't possibly be our new roommate? Jack, remember how lame Susan was that she didn't tell us it was her birthday until 10pm that night? Did anyone remember to bring their tennis racket and screwdriver?

Juls, Sach and Hana-while you didn't sleep in our room that year, I still feel like you lived there. Or maybe that's all the other years of co-habitating getting jumbled up in my brain.

The only person missing from the picture is Jodie, our honorary Riendian. I believe Jodie was also at this birthday dinner. Too bad we didn't force her into the picture.

It's been a great 14 years my lovelies. Look at how grown up we are. And all the kids we have. And all our adult like jobs and responsibilities. And how EDUCATED we all are.

Miss you all. Looking forward to celebrating in Hawaii...

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Why Must She Cry?

I decided that this is the week Katelyn is going to learn to fall asleep on her own. She isn't so good at it unless she is in the car or is being nursed before bed. Usually I rock her until she goes to sleep. The few times I've tried to leave her on her own, she has just cried and cried and cried. The other day, for her third nap, she cried for an hour before I gave up and nursed her. Mind you, I don't let her scream for an hour alone. I go in every 5-10 minutes and give her back her pacifier. She instantly calms down until she sees that I am leaving her there and walking out the door. Then the crying begins again. When I let her go longer, say 20 minutes, it's the same. I keep thinking she'll wear herself out. It just doesn't seem to be happening.

So this afternoon I tried again, as it is my goal for the week. Didn't happen. After 30 minutes I gave up and rocked her. She eventually fell asleep and I put her down. Then she woke up AGAIN 10 minutes later. I tried her swaddled, not swaddled, on her stomach, rubbed her head, and her back...nothing. After an hour I gave up and nursed her since it had been 2 1/2 hours since she had eaten and I didn't want her to only sleep for 30 minutes and then wake up hungry. She, of course, finally fell asleep on the boob and has yet to wake up. It's been an hour.

Correction, she just woke up. Not long enough of a nap, little missy. Not after your 25 minutes this morning.

If you see me at the end of the week and I have no hair left, it's because I have pulled it all out in frustration.

Peace and Quiet

It's been quiet around this blog for a week because we've been out of town. We headed up to the mountains to sit around and appreciate Lake Tahoe for an extended weekend. We were looking forward to the crisp fall days, the relaxation, cute pictures being taken of the girls for the blog, the grandparents being there to watch the kids when we wanted to go out or take a nap. Best laid plans and all that...

Yes, the sitting around happened. And the naps. Why? Because both girls decided they just didn't want to sleep well at night. Especially Katelyn. Especially Katelyn. She must have been awake almost every hour. The last night was better. She didn't wake up after midnight until 6am. But between 7pm and midnight? Every hour. The other nights? Pretty much every hour. I think her longest stretch was 3 hours. And that was in bed with me. I don't know about you, but I just don't sleep that good with a baby sleeping right up against me. (Whenever I tried to scoot away to get some space, she would follow me so she could be right up against me. Eventually I was on the edge of the bed with no where else to go.)

All in all, it was a very pleasant weekend. After it stopped SNOWING on Friday, the weather eventually warmed up to a balmy 60 degrees. Joel, Grandpa and Padyn hit the Reno Air Races on Saturday and enjoyed the "zooming" of the airplanes (Padyn's description, not mine). Padyn got to throw lots of rocks in the lake and I showed her how to build a sand castle. We took naps everyday while the girls slept (although, again, sometimes Kate's naps were right next to me.) We enjoyed hanging out with Grandpa and Mimi and celebrating Grandpa's birthday. (Padyn was upset that there was no party or cake.)

We got home last night and both girls went right to bed at 7:30. Didn't hear a peep from Kate until 4am and Padyn until 7:15 when the music went on. Sometimes, it's really nice to be home.

post script-Don't hold out for pictures. I took a fat total of 5 over the five days. I was just too tired.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Family Photo

This is the first true family photo we've taken since Kate was born. That's a bit sad seeing as how she is five months old. Who knows...if we don't get our act together, you may be seeing this one again around Christmas time.

Pirate Baby

Is it strange that Kate reminds me of a pirate in this picture? Just look at her face. If that's not an "Arrr, Matey" expression, I don't know what is.

So Happy Together

Guess what I figured out? Kate loves hanging out with Padyn when she's in her saucer and Padyn likes having the company while playing in her room. Makes for a nice break for Mommy.


Seriously, get me out of this thing. I should be out there, with Big Sister...running, laughing, blowing bubbles. Must. Get. Out.

I want to be doing this....

Monday, September 11, 2006

Lest We Forget

I've been thinking all day about about September 11th and how much I want to write something about it. Something to let people know that even though it's been 5 years, it's still fresh in my memory. Something to let those who experienced the devastation and horror first hand know that for many of us, it's just as fresh and vivid and real as it was 5 years ago. Something for those still suffering and grieving their loses. Something that reflects how it directly changed our course in life. Something to show how raw it all still is. Something... so you know that I still can't think about it without getting emotional and choked up.

But I couldn't think of anything.

The World According to Padyn

I love how toddlers live in their own little world. It even has its own little language that we uncreative adults don't always understand. Here's a few insights into Padyn's current vocabulary...

that's why=because
"That's why Mommy I don't want to."

that's in Spanish=anything that sounds like babble or is a made-up word
"Padyn, what do you mean when you say flova?"
"That's in Spanish, Mommy."

I and me!=me
"That's for I and me!"

45=the time that everything of importance happens
“Mommy, it’s almost 45. Then it will be time for dinner.”
“Mommy, it’s 45. Elmo’s on.”

I be careful!=I'm climbing up on something I should not be on or I'm doing something that may cause harm to my body.
Usually this is stated when she is alone in her room. When I enter, I find that she has climbed up on her desk where she knows she is not supposed to be.

why (asked 17 times in response to the same answer)=I didn't like the answer you gave and would like a different one, please.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Making Our Way to #1

Remember the other day I wrote about how when you search "Padyn" on Google, this blog is number 4 in the search?

Now it's number 2.

Go, baby, go.

The SECOND First Day of Preschool

Today was really Padyn's first day of preschool. As in, we got there at 8:30 am, I dropped her off, I left, and I came back at 11:30 am to pick her up. When we got there, she ran right into her classroom without a backwards glance and went right to the craft table. I said good-bye to her, but I'm not sure she heard me. Or cared.

When I came back to pick her up, she was very excited to see me and came running over as soon as her teacher excused her. She did give me a big hug, so I took that to mean she missed me, too, even though she was super happy about getting to be left at school. (She informed me in the car on the way to school that she wanted to stay all day.)

Walking out to the car I tried to get her to tell me what she did today. It was much like pulling teeth. We didn't get much beyond toys and the bike on the playground. But when I asked her if they read any books, her face lit up and she shouted,"We read TWO books!"

"Really? What were they about?"

"One about school."

"That sounds good. What was the other one about."
(This here is my favorite part....)

"It was a BIBLE STORY! About JESUS! About how JESUS LOVES ME!!!!!"

That big fat check I write every month for tuition? Totally worth it.

My How They Grow

Here are some shots of Katelyn as she attempts to grow before my very eyes. She is now very excited about grabbing things and putting them in her mouth. And she so desperately wants to be able to sit up on her own. She can pull herself up to sitting in her bouncy seat now (no photos of this yet) but sitting on the ground is still a challenge. You can see in the bottom pictures how frustrated she is that she just can't pull her body back up. She's trying everything she can think of to right herself.

Just...Not...Strong...Enough...Yet. Soon enough. Soon enough.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

First Day of Preschool

Today was more like "Play in Your New Classroom Day" rather than "1st Day of Preschool," but still, Padyn had a pretty good time. She didn't talk to anyone, mind you, but she had a great time playing with all the toys in the classroom and out on the playground. As soon as we got there she ran off to check out all that her new classroom had to offer. She didn't really care if we were there or not. She had new toys to explore.

Mommy met a few new people. That was nice to feel like I made some new acquaintances. On the way home when I asked Padyn what her favorite part about school was she said, "My friends." Hmmm...she doesn't seem to understand that friends are people you TALK to. Maybe it's just a preschooler thing. She'll get the hang of it.

I didn't get a really good picture of her going to school (we had an issue with mud and the requirement of a new shirt) but here are some of her playing in the classroom and with her new teacher, Mrs. D. (Too funny...that's what my students used to call me!) Notice that she is refusing to look at the camera or smile in the photo with Mrs. D. You know at the end of the year she'll be clinging to Mrs. D not wanting to leave. I'm impressed she agreed to stand next to her!

This was one of her favorite toys-fishing for magnetic objects.

This little bike merry-go-round thing was cool. She actually went and climbed on it when other kids were already there playing on it. That's a big step!

She only looks like she's playing with someone else. She really just stole his Play-doh.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Tomorrow is the First Day of the Rest of our Life

Well, until she graduates from high school...

Tomorrow, Tuesday, September 5th...Padyn starts preschool. I haven't written about it yet because I don't know exactly how I feel about it. On one hand I'm thrilled. Six hours a week when I only have one child? How great will that be! I can do things again that used to be easier...go to Trader Joes, get my hair cut, visit the dentist. Ok, they aren't super fun things, but they are errands that need attending to. And with two children in tow, it is more complicated. I'm excited about life being a bit easier with only one kid to haul around. Sure, it's only a few hours a week, but it will make a difference.

On the other hand I'm a bit sad. This is my baby. She's old enough to go to school. And this is just the beginning. Soon she'll be in kindergarten, then elementary where she's gone all day, then junior high. Before we know it we'll be packing up her things to ship her off to college. I don't ever get this time back. My baby is becoming a little girl. Sometimes I miss that baby.

On the third hand (you didn't know I had three hands?) I'm nervous for her. She's a bit of an introvert and an observer. I don't think I can stand the thought of her hanging out on the edge of the playground just watching the other kids play. What if someone is mean to her? What if the other kids don't let her play with them? What if she never makes any friends? But then, those are my anxieties, aren't they? I have to be careful not to press them onto her.

Tomorrow is a short day. We only go for an hour and the parents stay with the kids. When I told Padyn this, do you know what her response was?

"No, you go home and leave me there."

Well, she's certainly ready, even if I'm not.

Comparison at Five Months

My two babies are starting to look a little more different now. At 5 months, Padyn had more hair than Katelyn, but she was smaller. Katelyn has a more pronounced chin. They have the exact same shaped head and the same color eyes. I love seeing Kate in clothes I used to love putting Padyn in. It makes the similarities more striking. Unfortunately, I didn't have one for this month were they are wearing the same clothes. Since Kate is bigger, she is wearing the clothes sooner than Padyn did. But then again, she's doing many things sooner than Padyn did.

Comparison at 4 Months

Comparison at 3 Months

Comparison at 1 Month

***I have no idea why I skipped 2 months. Not thinking, I guess.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

The Nikon D50: So easy, a 3 year old can use it

Or a 2 and three quarter year old...We don't look so hot, and I am HORRIFIED that I am posting a picture of myself on the internet where I look like this, but it's all for the sake of showing you how brilliant my child is.

What's that you say? It's crooked? Well, what about this one?

Mommy, Daddy...what big teeth you have.

***No help was given to said child in holding, positioning or operating the camera in anyway. She did it all on her own. Did I mention she's brilliant?

Friday, September 01, 2006