Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Easter 2011

Easter was really fun this year; Marin really got the concept of hunting for the eggs. Of course, after every one she found, she wanted to open right on the spot to reveal the candy inside. Once we convinced her to wait until she found all of the eggs, things moved a little more quickly.

After church, an egg hunt, opening the basket that the Easter Bunny left at our house, and brunch on the deck, we headed to my parents house for more festivities. Turns out the Easter Bunny visited Grandma and Grandpa's house too, so Marin enjoyed another egg hunt, leading to the monster load- an enormous Minnie Mouse Easter basket and presents.

We had a delicious dinner, enjoyed great conversation with family, and used our new sidewalk chalk and "buzzles" (Marin for bubbles). It was the perfect afternoon!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

April Sprinkles Bring May Babies...

I've said before that we have the greatest neighbor friends on earth. Want proof? This past Thursday they threw a surprise baby "sprinkle" for the baby and me. It was all so darling! My neighbor Georgine held it at her house, and literally no detail was missed. They made a special welcome baby sign that I put in the nursery, and a darling diaper cake. They had adorable decorations and flowers, and food that went on for days. And speaking of food, Georgine made this homemade 5 billion layer spice cake with fresh spices from our spice shop in town, that I am still dreaming about.

Even more of a surprise, my mom and Molly were there. Naturally when I saw them I publicly all out balled. Natch Molly took a train from Chicago after work with all her work stuff, and her famous guacamolly (that is one of my very favorite treats), AND a homemade gift of adorable hand knitted shoes for the baby (along with a bag full of other "essentials"). It doesn't get any better than her.

It was such a fun night with my neighbors celebrating the baby. It made me officially crazy excited to meet our little bundle. Even changing its teeny weeny little diapers doesn't seem daunting at this point. The sprinkle totally set me up. We have everything we could possibly need and more, and I don't even have to buy diapers or wipes or those last few swaddles that I had on my list. Thank you, thank you, thank you, ladies! You are the very sweetest and best!

I told Jason that I am in official mama bird mode now. My days are consumed with making sure that my nest has enough sticks to be strong when the eggs hatch, and that I have enough worms to feed my babies. I am nesting for reals, ya'll.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Jason's Wall of Fame

I don't especially know why, but Jason likes to refer to our newly completed fireplace and built-in bookshelf addition, as the Wall of Fame. There aren't any artifacts of anyone famous on the wall, but he's pretty proud of it, so I guess that's where the title comes from. And, I'm proud enough of him, to roll with this name, and not roll my eyes when he sits on the couch at the end of the day, lets out a sigh and says, "Ahh, the wall of fame."

When we moved in

Before starting this project


This project has totally transformed this room. I should mention that this part of the house is what we call the "new" part. It's about 35 years old, but compared to the rest of our homes 95, she's a spring chicken. When we moved in, this "new" part really didn't have the architectural details that the rest of the home did; I think this project has really changed that. My favorite part is that when we bought this house a year and a half ago, we looked at the wall, then a row of closets and an odd built in ironing board, and said, "If we knocked out all of these closets, pushed back all of the walls, turned this weird ugly full bathroom into a powder room, added a fireplace and built a wall of built in bookshelves; we could use this room as a family room." It has been fun to watch it transform, and it's great to see it come to life and be done. Of course we did all of the work ourselves, aside from the actual installation of the fireplace. For that, we paid the fireplace store- not because Jason couldn't have physically have done it, but because it took the fireplace store two guys and four hours and I know I won't have a gas leak or a house fire. Jason completely built the bookshelves and the mantle from scratch, piece by piece. There have been a lot of nights of just sitting on the couch staring and admiring. :)

Here are some pictures of the month or so of construction as we made progress:

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Big Sister Class!

Saturday Marin and I went to Big Sister (and Brother) class at the hospital where I'll deliver the baby. When we arrived, the nurse checking us in asked Marin, "What is your name?" And she replied, "I Big Sister! I go Big Sister class!" The nurse very sweetly responded, "That's right! What's your name, sweetie?"

We went through the rest of the class with the same enthusiasm. Marin learned all about babies and like the other children, shared a baby picture with the class. They read a book about a baby coming home, and watched a puppet show. They learned what babies eat, and what might be some safe toys for them to play with, and how they are special because they get to eat big sister and brother things and play with big children toys. When it came time to holding a pretend baby, Marin was first in line. When she learned that they were going to get to see a REAL baby, Marin bolted to the front of the line so fast, I literally had to run after her through the hospital. The real baby part was for sure the highlight for Marin. She was obsessed. She pointed out everything she recognized in their bassinets- pacis, the nose aspirator. We had to stay after a little bit and look at every single baby in the nursery while Marin said, "Look Mommy, a 'lil baby!" Marin also got to see the room where she will visit Mommy and Daddy after the baby arrives. When the nurse showed her where Daddy would sleep Marin told me, "Daddy like this!" I didn't want to burst her sweet optimism, but I can almost guarantee her, that her Daddy will not be as thrilled by the twin pull out sleeper/couch.

We got to take home a coloring book that talked all about how special it is to be a big sister and how exciting it will be to meet the new baby. I am really nervous about Marin feeling like we don't love her as much once the new baby comes, so I hope that the class was another way that helped her feel like becoming a big sister is special. It was a fun morning together, until I asked her to hold my hand on the way out (instead of running the halls of the hospital at top speed) and she threw herself on the ground and threw a complete fit. And then I pictured two of them...

Ribbit, Ribbit! Hop, Hop!

Last week Marin and I met a whole bunch of frogs from all over the world, and the Easter Bunny.
The frogs went over much better than the bunny.

Our library was hosting a special program on frogs, where they brought in a specialist who calls herself "The Frog Lady". Marin really likes the frog character in one of her daily "must read" books, so I signed us up. We got to hear and learn all about frogs and see lots of pictures of different colored frogs- Marin shouted, "Mommy, it's blue!" and then at the end we got to look at tons of real frogs up close. Marin was fascinated. She got right up close in a complete mob of big kids and it didn't bother her one bit. She watched the frogs jump and hop in their little boxes, with her nose just about touching the little cage.

The next day we went with Grandma to meet the Easter Bunny at a fundraiser for her school. We got all dressed up in our Easter dress, talked a big game about meeting the bunny, and then decided we preferred him from about 5 feet away. I wasn't shocked, because this is pretty much how we feel about Santa. Marin did end up having her picture taken with the bunny, but I had to stand with her, so I don't have any pictures of that. If we get one back from the photographer there that day, I'll post it then. Marin had a blast the rest of the time- playing with the other children, and reading books in one of their chairs. Maybe the bunny will be a hit next year?