Wednesday, August 31, 2011


Here's how the conversation at dinner tonight went:

Thomas: Mom, is that a red onion in your salad that you are eating?
Me: Yes it is.
Thomas:  Is that the same kind of onion that you put in my salad last week that I didn't like?
Me: Yes it is.
Thomas: I don't like those.  They're too spicy.  They hurt my mouth & my feelings.

I knew Thomas was a sensitive kid, but I had no idea that he was this sensitive.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

(Belated) 2 year and 2 month check ups

Today, the girls each had their routine milestone check-ups.  Although belated due to our move and our arrival here in Alaska, it was finally good to get some offical digits on their weight & height on the growth chart.

Abbigail's 2 year check up stats:
Height - 32.5 in (15th %tile)
Weight - 24 lbs (16th %tile)
Abby is in motion almost non-stop.  She climbs up and down stairs with almost no help, jumps up using both feet, runs with ease, has been sitting at the table (with no booster) using her fork & spoon like a pro, likes to pick all her clothes and wants to do things by herself.  She is a huge helper & loves to copy household activities that I do around the house.  The next step with Abby will be potty training.  I figured there will be a lot of little naked butt days with our potty near by.  Oh lordy...

 Marilyn's (really belated) 2 month check up stats -
Height - 23.75 in (50th %tile)
Weight - 12 lbs 14 oz (52nd %tile)
 Our baby girl is smiling  and cooing quite a bit at us.  She turns her head toward our different voices... and as you can imagine with the kids playing & screaming, she is very busy looking around to see who it is.  Speaking of looking around, Mar (sounds like Bear... this is one of her knicknames) follows a toy with her eyes.  She raises her head when she is doing tummy time, has really good head control when we are holding her.  Finally, Marilyn is starting to grasp toys that are put near her.  She is a rockstar sleeper at night pulling 9-10 hour stretches before waking (which Mommy loves given that she is breastfed).

Monday, August 29, 2011

First Day of Pre-K

 He seemed calm, cool and collected this morning.  He might as well have told me, "Nothing do'in Mom!"  Thomas really just wanted to get there and meet his teachers and meet some new friends (that's my social butterfly).  He was all ready to go with his new Thomas the Train backpack.
 I wish I knew what Abbigail really thought of us bringing Thomas to school  and then the girls leaving him there.  However, us girls had a good morning running errands and then playing , but it was nice to go and pick him up at lunchtime and head home together.
I didn't get much out of him today about school except that he had a great time on the playground and they had milk and animal cookies for snack.  He did tell me that he likes the fact that one of his teachers has the same name as me (Ms. Michelle). 

Although a bit fidgety going down for a nap today, Thomas finally fell victim to sleep and dozed off.  However, I have found recently that I need to wake him them up by a certain time or it messes their bedtime routine.  Soooooooooooooo, Marilyn and I came downstairs flipped on all the lights.  This is what we found in each of the kids' beds:

... and then proceeded to sing loudly our wake-up song.  "It's time to wake up, wake up, wake up; It's time to wake up, wake up NOW!"
Needless to say, Thomas was mad but eventually got over it once we started to play and had our snack.  Abbigail, on the other hand, sat up and looked at me like I was crazy.  Once she saw Marilyn and I dancing around, she quickly joined the dance and was glad she was up and moving.

Preschool News

Tomorrow (Monday) is the first day of preschool for Thomas.  He will be at a new school, with new teachers, and new friends.  I'm honestly not sure how he is feeling, but I'm a little nervous and apprehensive.  I'm just hoping this is "new school" nerves.  I have a million thoughts and other feelings whirling around in my head so I'm sure you will hear more in this years "Preschool News."

Sunday, August 28, 2011

(Almost) In our backyard

We ventured out after dinner in the middle of the week for a drive and found this. 
It may not be exactly in our backyard, but this beautiful view is only a few short miles from our house and it IS ON base.  Can you believe this?  Peaceful.  All natural.  Almost untouched.  Alaska.
Then we came around the bend and found 6-mile lake.
At closer glance... 
 ... there are float planes lined up near shore.  Way cool.  This will definately be on my Alaska Bucket List!
 You can see the snow, right?  As a reminder, it's August.
 And because I know there are some people family grandparents out there that really only want to see pictures of the kids...
Bundled up for a ride to the playground one morning
 Enjoying yet another playground
 This was taken from the day that Thomas & Abbigail decided NOT to take a nap... a few minutes after getting into the car.

 Marilyn enjoying the playground too

Saturday, August 27, 2011

"Rio" Brazilian Dance

Video Clip - A recent favorite movie in our house is "Rio." As you can tell, Thomas loves to dance (and so does his little sidekick Abbigail)... Brazilian style. The video clip is a little long (4 minutes) but certainly a hoot. At one point, you see Thomas walking around the playroom (excuse the mess) trying to find something that can be his hat like the little yellow bird, Tito has. He also likes the fighting scene towards the end between the birds and the monkeys. He is quite the entertainer.

Friday Night Leftovers (It's Maddness People Edition)

Hey Friday.  I'll be honest, you look no different from all the other days.  I'm sorry to admit that but it must be because everyday is the same... unpack more boxes & try and get organized.  Hopefully I will appreciate you in the near future when all is "normal" again.  Until then, here are my FNL thoughts:
  • I'm sick of little colored numbered stickers on everything.  They are like scabs... I just have to pick them off.
  • Last night, Thomas & Abbigail showed total team effort - they snuck around downstairs together gathering toys from different locations and bringing them into Thomas' room to play well after it was bedtime.  This went on and on despite numerous warnings.  Both continued to disobey.  The night finally ended with toys taken out of both of their rooms and lots of tears.  I do have to give them an "A+" for team work though even though I was utterly frustrated at both of them.  Score one for the kids.
  • Tonight was an entirely different story.  Mommy & Daddy were smart and took the troops on an exploration walk tonight after dinner.  They came home exhausted.  They barely made it through their bath tubby.  They were fast asleep before their heads even hit the pillows.  Score one for the parents.
  • Thomas is eating like a truck driver lately - it must be another growth spurt.
  • One minute Abbigail is sweet, cuddly and lovey; the next minute she is defiant, vicious-looking and screaming towards someone.  I guess that is her Mr. Jeckle & Mr. Hide personality.
  • Hoping Monday ends up being a smooth 1st day at a new preschool for Thomas.  Not really sure how he feels about going back to school, but I know I'm pretty apprehensive and nervous.
  • We are hoping to hit the biggest think up here in these parts this time of year this weekend... the Alaska State Fair! 
  • I know it has already only been a week, but I want my house in order.  I hate 1/2 or even 3/4 done.  It drives me crazy that some things are still in a box (of course in the middle of the living room) because where its supposed to go is already occupied by other stuff waiting to go in its spot.  Make sense?  I just want ORDER people!!!!!!
  • Especially the play room/TV room/office space area downstairs.  It's just madness. And because there is no order, the kids think there is no "clean up" that has to be done.  Once again... madness.
  • Have I mentioned that we think it is just gorgeous here?  I can't imagine how beautiful it will look when there is white snow everywhere.

Friday, August 26, 2011


Thomas is a pretty emphathetic little boy.  He is a caring little boy.  He is a funny kid.  I think he is pretty honest too.  Sometimes too honest.

Thomas:  "Mommy, your birthday is the next one, right?"
Me: "Yep, sure is bud."
Thomas: "How old are you going to be?"
Me: "I will be turning 37 years old."
Thomas:  "Wow, Mommy that is soooooooo old."
Me: " It's not that old."
Thomas: "You're right... Pop is really old."

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

A long random list of updates

It has been exactly 1.5 weeks since we started calling this house our home.  It doesn't quite look like our home yet, but it certainly is feeling like it.  Lots of thoughts having been spinning in my head so you will have to excuse the FNL format (bullets) due to lack of time tonight and also lack of sleep since Friday.  Here we go:
  • We have been downtown several times, sometimes walking around, other times driving around.  There is so much here yet it has this small town feel.  We are really excited to explore, do and see here in Anchorage.  Have I mentioned that from our house (on base) we can be downtown in 10 minutes?  Awesome.
  • I'm still working on compiling my 101 Things to Do in Alaska list (aka: our Alaska Bucket List).  This is forthcoming.  Stay tuned.
  • I've located the base library, however we have failed to get there yet.  My plan is to make it a weekly visit for us.  I will probably even have a set day we go on our "fieldtrip" there.  I really do hope to take advantage of the resources we have right here in spitting distance from us.  This was something I never did in Florida.  The kids already love books and reading... I'm hoping this really ends up being something fun and something they look forward to.
  • I'm getting very anxious about Thomas starting preschool here on base.  I've never really been a proponent of the military base daycare system.  "System" is probably the key word here; not very lovey, not very personal.  Instead, very systematic.  My first few interactions with the personnel who are running this "system" here for preschool has not been one of "A+" satisfaction.  I won't bore anyone out there with what I'm talking about.  I'm just hoping that the curriculum and teachers are not a reflection of what I have experienced.  I will give it a shot, but if it is not to my standards and I don't feel good about it, I will not hesitate to make a change.  Fingers crossed.  More to come on this subject I'm sure.
  • Have I mentioned that we are getting rid of a LOT of toys?  Tomorrow is the first of (hopefully) several boxes of donated toys.  And to be fair, there is also a big box of kitchen goods, etc that is making its way to the thrift store.
  • Not sure what Brian is more happy about - the arrival of his pots/pans/knives so that he can cook up some of his gourmet-tasting food OR his grill so he can feel like a man again grilling steaks?
  • Those tiny little colored numbered "moving" stickers that are on every box, every piece of furniture and every thing we own are now my pet peeve.  I can't stand seeing them.  I pull them off of anything.  They are driving me insane.
  • News Flash - Thomas is now sleeping in his bed without the safety rail!  Yeah for big boys!
  • Abbigail is so ready for potty training.  It pains me that she wants a new diaper after standing in front of me and peeing in her diaper.  She is insistent.  It is just a waste on diapers.  Now that the little potty is here, I foresee the potty training commencing in the next month.  It certainly does help that Nana just sent the cutest little girl panties and Abby went crazy.  She stripped her diaper off on the spot and wanted the underwear on that moment.  See... she is ready.
  • Marilyn is finally settled in her own bedroom.  In a real crib.  With her own dresser.  And own closet.  I felt like the poor girl was just a third class citizen for the last 3 months.  She had nothing to call her own but a pack-n-play.  Now she has a room and it is soon to be decorated too. 
  • Finally, I will close with this:  I have good kids.  Yes, there are time-outs, and tantrums, and kids screaming and pinching and all the things that go along with having young children close in age.  There are times when Brian and I don't necessarily think they are acting as good as they could when we go out and about.  However, from the time we left on our roadtrip in late July (16 days worth of travel) until just the other day - we have been paid so many compliments in restaurants, hotels and even the DMV how well behaved our children are.  At first, I dismissed the compliment after saying "thank you."  But each time that someone else (in a different location along the way) said such nice things to us & the kids about the kids... we realized that Thomas, Abbigail and (yes, even) Marilyn are really good kids.  It makes me warm & fuzzy inside and quite proud of each of our children.  It also makes me think that Brian and me must be doing something right.  Not bad for no instruction book.

Out from under all the boxes & paper

We are here... I promise.  It's just been a very busy last few days since the delivery truck brought all of our stuff.  We are slowly digging ourselves out from under all the boxes and paper.  Let me emphasize slowly.  Anyway, I will try my best to write some stories and thoughts about these last few days later tonight or maybe by tomorrow.  At best, I have a some pictures from D-day (aka: Delivery day).  It was chaotic, fun, absolutely exhausting and eye-opening. 

Marilyn had a front row seat most of the day (when she wasn't napping).
 The kids opening boxes and wrapped toys like they hadn't seen them in years (or any toys at all for that matter).
 More Maddness...
 Marilyn's room - she is actually sleeping in the closet at this moment in her Pack-n-Play.  She didn't even flinch when movers brought in her furniture.
 Thomas & Abby shoved in the corner of the laundry room eating lunch (only space available).

 The man in charge
 Typical looking room jammed pack with boxes and furniture
 I've discovered that my children have it all.
I have cancelled Christmas and there will be no toys!
Just kidding, but seriously we are in the process of "thining" out and donating a lot of toys.
 The supervisor

 More maddness

 The funny man
 New haircuts this weekend for the boys
Picking up some goods at Sams
(notice Marilyn tucked in the back of the cart).
 Just another beautiful late afternoon in Alaska with a rainbow.
Anyone want to come and visit?