Sunday, December 28, 2014

Story Time


Harper Happenings

This little girl is the sweetest. She's the kind of baby that makes you smile whenever you look at her, because she is so content and peaceful and happy.  We love her to pieces.  

She still sucks on her toes (even if they're covered).  In all fairness, I love to munch on those tiny little toes myself.  


She is so darling when she sucks her thumb.  


Speaking of the sucking of fingers...Harper has a special cuddle object when she's winding down and that she likes to hold when she's sucking her thumb:  The back-up "ya-ya".  When I'm putting Harper down for a nap, all I need to do is snuggle that yaya up to her face.  She grabs it, pulls it next to her cheek, and then rolls over to fall asleep.  A total dream, this baby!


She is fully capable of sitting up.  But catching her at a time where she wants to sit up is kind of hard.  When I try to get her to practice, I can feel her pushing back.  She'll be like Claire - she'll be physically capable of something, but won't do it on anyone's schedule but her own.


At her 6 month appointment, she was only in the 33rd percentile for her weight, which is small for my children.  That was, however, before I started feeding her baby food.  She is sure starting to fill out!  At 7 1/2 months, she has easily gained a couple of pounds since her 6 month weigh-in.


This baby continues to delight our whole family.  We are so glad to have Harper with us!

Friday, December 19, 2014

It's Good to be Six!

SIX!!  I can't believe it!  It's true that the days are slow, but the years are fast.

We began the day with gifts from Mom and Dad, and grandparents.  She got a suitcase, some Polly Pockets, nail art, money, and a Frozen-themed Christmas tree.  


She was sweet and let her brother help her decorate it.



Above all else, Claire wanted a birthday party.  She's wanted one for quite a while, and I told her once she was in school she could have one.  So this was the year!  Unfortunately, our school doesn't allow kids to bring party invites to school unless the whole class is invited, and since I didn't have any of Claire's classmates' contact info, no school friends came.  But we had just the right amount of friends and had a great time.

I am not a fancy party planner.  But I do know a few things:  1.  I don't like goody bags.  They usually involve cheap toys that just end up getting thrown away.  2.  I know what my daughter likes.  She likes to do art projects, she loves glitter and all things sparkly, and she loves sprinkles.  So in lieu of a goody bag, we did an art project.  The kids all drew a picture, and then bedazzled to their hearts' content.  There was glitter in every hue imaginable, glitter glue, small gems, confetti, and google-eyes.  They also bedazzled clothespins with a magnet on the back so they could hang their creations on the fridge.  I anticipated an explosion of glitter everywhere when the project was done, but surprisingly, they did a good job of keeping most of the glitter on the table.  And the little guys mostly used glitter glue (which was the intention on my end), so that worked out pretty good for me!

Here are Denali, Lauren, Savannah (who stepped in and was an amazing helper, even though I didn't ask her to), Carter, and Henry.


And Becca, Natalie, and Claire getting their sparkle on!


Glitter hands!


Claire also asked for a pinata.  Adam obliged, and was a good sport to hold it while the kids whacked at it in their various levels of aggression.  In the end, Adam needed to hit it to finally bust it open.


The gifts were perfect.  She got this beautiful dress-up dress from her bestie, Natalie.


Pinkie Pie!


And a Pinkie Pie purse from Becca!


And more ponies!


And her sweet friend Denali made Claire a card and gave her a book.  This was the sleeper favorite.  It's a book she can read by herself, and my budding reader did awesome, understanding the emotion and emphasis to put on the text based on the font size.  We read it together last night, and we were laughing so hard.  She named it as her favorite book (see questionnaire below).  Plus, it's Mo Willems...what's not to like?


She was a happy girl!



Everyone having fun...and then there's Henry, covering his ears.  


We did cupcakes so that everyone could decorate their own cupcake.  We had a LOT of sprinkles.  


Claire liked her glittery star candles.



And this girl...she did awesome, considering she was mostly neglected for two hours while we attended to the 7 other children running around our house.  Man, did we luck out with a sweet baby!


And here's this year's questionnaire.  While many things have changed, there were still quite a few that stayed the same:

What makes you happy?  Playing with my sister
What is your favorite animal?  Horses
What is your favorite thing to eat?  Salmon, rice and broccoli
What is your least favorite thing to eat?  Quiche (I think one of the main reasons for this is the bacon I put in it...see last year's questionnaire)
What is your favorite thing to do?  Play the iPad
What is your favorite TV show?  Sofia the First 
What are you really good at?   Playing Candy Land (it's true...she wins EVERY. TIME.)
What is your favorite movie?   Barbie & Her Sisters in a Pony Tale
What is your favorite color?  Purple and pink
What is your favorite thing to wear?  Dresses
What is your favorite song?  The Gift of a Friend (from one of the Tinker Bell movies)
Who is your best friend?  Natalie
What is your favorite thing to do with Mom?  Play together 
What is your favorite thing to do with Dad?  Play with Lego Friends
What is your favorite sport?  Red Sox
Where is your favorite place to go?  Children's Museum and the aquarium
What is your favorite book?  My Friend is Sad, by Mo Willems (one of her birthday presents)
What do you want to be when you grow up?  A teacher AND a vet

Thursday, December 18, 2014

O Christmas Tree

Before marrying me/moving to Oregon, Adam had never been to a tree lot to get a Christmas tree.  His family would snowmobile into the woods, find a tree, and haul it back out every year, and Adam always talks with such fondness about those times with his family.  I, on the other hand, never did anything but go to a tree lot for a Christmas tree.  And for whatever reason, we've simply gone to the Fred Meyer to get a tree ever since we've been in Oregon.  This year, however, we made a change.  We decided to cut down our own tree at one of the many U-cut tree farms in our area.  Not quite snowmobiling into the woods, but definitely a step up from the Fred Meyer.  We drove around in the area where we thought we might find some trees, and just picked a farm.  

The kids were both really excited.


They  paused just long enough for me to take a picture of them, and then this is pretty much what I saw of them for the remainder of our time there:


They ran and hid and ran some more.  

Here's Harper, giving me the stink-eye.  I think she was a little chilly.


The grouchy face didn't last long.


The kids liked this little Charlie Brown-esque tree.


Adam and I picked this one instead.  


The kids were very interested in the whole process.


This was a LOT more fun (and half the price) than picking out a pre-cut tree.  Hopefully we can find this place again next year!

Nest


Saturday, December 6, 2014

Monday, December 1, 2014

Facebook-isms

I was looking back at some Facebook posts and laughing at some of the cute things my children have said and done.  Well, they definitely deserve to be placed in the family yearbook!

March 6: Turns out Henry finds getting a haircut infinitely more traumatic than getting immunizations.


March 25: Henry has a little Lightning McQueen and Mater that he carries around constantly. A couple of weeks ago he "lost" them, and though I scoured the house for them, they didn't turn up. So after waiting for a week, I bought him new ones. Well, I got home from work tonight to find that the Mater turned up (so he now has two). He had them in bed with him, and was so excited to have two Maters. Henry can "help" say prayers at night by filling in the last word of a sentence. Claire was helping him. She started "We are thankful for our many...", intending for Henry to say "blessings" Instead he said "Mater." He is thankful for his many Maters.

March 26: Thank you, Frozen, for inspiring my children to ask to eat carrots for a snack. I couldn't have done it without you! (And believe me, I've tried!)

April 19: I think I need to take Claire on mommy-daughter dates more often. It's nice to hear that I'm her best friend and that she loves spending time with me.

April 25: "My dad is the best killer." Said by Claire as she explained her picture to me of a flexing Adam, who had just killed a wolf that was apparently attacking our family.

April 26: Took the kids to see the LEGO movie tonight at the cheap seats, and about 30 minutes into the show, Claire turns to Adam and asks, "Dad, do you think they know they are made of LEGO's?"

April 29: I was feeling nostalgic for the Ireland trip we took last year, so I pulled out the photo book. As Claire looked at pictures of castles with me, she asked if princesses lived there. I told her that they did a long time ago, but not any more. She paused for a minute and then said "they must all live at Disneyland now."

June 28: "You're the looker, and I'm the finder."
"Maybe you should play like I do." 
"Loser!"
"Do you just want to watch me win?"
"You don't remember where it is? That's okay. I do."
All things said to me by Claire as she kicked my trash in a game of Memory.

June 29: We were watching a tv show where a character got stuck on an elevator with a pregnant lady. The character is on the emergency phone and says "Houston, we have a problem!" as the lady (of course), goes into labor. The scene changes to a different character and Claire asks "Is that Houston?"

July 14: Henry: Is boo-te-ful
Me: What is beautiful?
Henry: You is (as he plays with my hair)
I love me my Henry!

August 8: While at Target today, Claire finds this ridiculous dress-up Elsa dress that lights up as it simultaneously plays "Let It Go". Irony ensued as Henry spotted it, wanted to hold it himself, and begins attempting to pull it out of Claire's hands as she angry screams "let it go!" Can't make this stuff up.

September 17: I love the mornings when Adam doesn't have to rush out the door to work so I can walk Claire to school, just the two of us. She always manages to tell me things about her day that she doesn't mention when I ask her when she gets home. She picks me flowers along the way and holds my hand.

November 7: Henry: I be Spider Man and you be Spider Mom. (Then web shooting from the wrists commences)

November 16: Me: Henry, you're so cute.
Henry: I not cute. Baby Harper cute.
M: If you're not cute, then what are you?
H: I Spiderman!

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Enthusiastic Eater

Well, Harper has finally gotten to the point where milk from Mom is no longer enough.  While I started cereal with both Claire and Henry at about 5 months, I waited until Harper hit the 6 month mark to start her on solids.  I think she was ready.  




Though she gave me the same sour faces that Claire and Henry did when they tried cereal for the first time, Harper was definitely more physiologically mature and kept most of it in her mouth.  She was interested in the food, and even enthusiastic about trying again!



Thursday, November 20, 2014

An Incredible Evening

The Incredibles has been a favorite family movie in our home for quite some time.  Every time we would turn it on, Henry and Claire would run around the family room, mimicking the characters on the show.  Henry thought Dash was the coolest character around, and would exclaim "I Dash!" every time he felt the need to run fast.  After Harper was born, Adam and I quickly decided we needed to be the Incredibles for Halloween!  It was really fun putting the costumes together.  We ordered the red clothing online, used an old t-shirt of Adam's for the belt, cut off old leggings for the kids' black bottoms, and Adam created the iron-on Incredibles logo.  I made the eye masks from craft foam and stretchy string used for jewelry making.  I would say we looked pretty good!


It was fun to be in Cedar and go trick-or-treating with cousins!  


We went to Grandma and Grandpa Clark's house for a Halloween party that involved lots of games and treats.  The kids had a great time.





Henry tried and tried to catch that little ball...


and eventually he figured out how to do it...his own way.


Cute cousins!




After the games, we headed out to do some trick-or-treating.   It was so fun - people would holler at us from cars, telling us how they loved our costumes!  




Harper was quite the hit!


Well, she was pretty incredible!  I was amazed...she kept that mask on the whole time without scratching or pulling at it.  


One house gave out hot chocolate!


After collecting all the loot, we headed back for a couple more games.


I think Harper enjoyed her first Halloween!



Harper Turns 3!

We sure love this little girl, and we were excited to wish her a happy birthday.  But, of course, this little sassafrass decided to have so...