Saturday, August 28, 2010

18 months and counting!

Yesterday was Hope's 1 1/2 birthday. She has brought so much love and joy to our home! We are blessed to have her as our firstborn. She has officially passed the 18 pound mark now, so only a little more to go before we can turn her car seat around in the car!Grandma Lorrie and Auntie Amy sent a special package for her in the mail, and we let her open it in the morning so she could enjoy the contents all day long!
Daddy reads her card to her while she explores the box. It was a Winnie-the-Pooh postcard, and as soon as Hope saw it in the box she excitedly pointed at Tigger and exclaimed "T, T, T!" She hasn't got the full word down yet, but she says the "t" sound very well!
A new puzzle! Hurray.
She handed it to Josh right away so he could open it for her. There were also some cute outfits in the box, which she toted around the house most of the day.
Later, she was playing with one of her dollies. "Baby" and "hat" are two words she says very well, and was repeating both of them constantly as she was playing in the hallway.
I guess she saw that the doll's hat was off it's head, so she was going to put her purple dress-up hat on the doll instead. Needless to say, it covered most of the doll, not just the head!
We had half an hour to spare before lunch, so Hope and I decided to make some blueberry-strawberry muffins for Josh.
It gave me a chance to try her out in the homemade apron that had also come in her birthday box! I got a matching one too, so we both wore our new aprons while we baked. I showed Hope how to put the cinnamon sugar on top and she put it on all the muffins for me, only doubling up once!
Decided she'd try her left hand at it too!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Auntie Chloe comes to see us!

Late Wednesday night, or rather, early Thursday morning, Chloe rolled in from Lethbridge! She needed to be in Edmonton on the weekend for a Doula Conference, so she came a day early to join the fun going on at our house. Lydia and I had the painting done by then, but not the stenciling. We were saving that for the artistic, tall, stylish, beautiful... you get the idea - for Chloe.
Being the true quilter and farmer's daughter that she is, she wrote out everything first and measured it to be sure it would fit before she began. I really wanted Zeph 3:17 to go on the nursery walls, but Chloe wasn't sure it would fit, so she investigated! Ha ha - not only did it fit, but Ps 91:11 and Ps 23:1 also fit!! It is so refreshing and encouraging to have the Word on the walls of our baby's room! Helps me focus on the truth during tired moments as well as happy moments!
Josh found time to check out our bathroom light switch situation to see if he could change the wiring so the outlet would have power without the light having to be turned on.
Well, unless he was a dry-waller he didn't think he could do it. Hence, we decided it wasn't worth it, and so that's that. Back into the wall went the switches, and we're still happy.
The artist at work.
Along with helping me paint and playing with Hope, Lydia made time to keep up on email and scheduling for her new piano students.
Hope was supposed to be helping set the table for lunch, and I guess in a way she did -
She just decided to occupy herself and stay out from underfoot by playing with the spoons instead of putting them on the table.
The girls had Hope playing with them in the nursery while Chloe stenciled. There was a lot of chatter and a lot of laughter coming from that room! :o)
Next day, more of the same. Hope seemed to think it was "the funnest thing" to play with the toys in the crib for a few minutes and then gleefully throw them down onto the floor!
Ah yes - making it look real classy, and using the level to make sure we get it on straight!
Working together - such fun! ...Thinking again...
It's coming along!
The girls babysat Hope for us that afternoon while we attended the funeral of a family friend. Later, Auntie Lyddie whisked Hope off to the kitchen to bake cookies.
Hope loves to help, as you can see in the clip below.

Needless to say, that was well-seasoned chicken!
Saturday night bath! Look at that fun bubble hat Auntie Lydia made!
It was such a nice break for me to have Lydia bathe Hope while Lydia was here, as my growing tummy is increasingly making Hope's bath time more of a challenge for me. Thankfully, Hope was totally fine with Lydia taking Momma's spot at the tub side which is significant, because Hope is very particular about who she lets into her bath experience!
Look at the mess we made! 5 canners of peaches in 5 hrs sure makes a mess of one's stove top! While Lydia bathed the toddler, I took to scrubbing this mess in an effort to restore the stove top it to it's original colour. I ran out of energy before it was finished though, so Lydia graciously finished it for me while I looked at books with Hope before bedtime. The fruit of our labour! These are Josh's favourite, so I was glad to be able to do a bunch this year. Thanks to Lorrie for passing on some of her old jars from the acreage!

The next evening the girls returned home to the adventures that await them there. We were sad to see them leave, but very blessed by their visit with us.

Lydia's Visit, Pt 2

Monday was a nice day outside, so we ate lunch in the backyard to escape the paint fumes for a little bit! Hence the rozy cheeks in the following pictures. :o) Lydia checked her email after lunch and soon had Hope on her lap watching a video from Lizzy's blog. Hope was captivated by watching Kaitlyn laugh during her bathtime! Hope made Auntie Lydia play the video 6 or 7 times in a row. Lizzy - just so you know, Hope has now taken to saying/waving "Bye-Bye" the same way Kaitlyn does! So sweet our little ones can be friends even though we live so many provinces apart. :o)
Like I said - it had her complete attention!
FINALLY - a day warm enough to get out the swimming pool!
The fascination with dumping water continues.... that's usually what Hope does when she "washes dishes" - she dumps the water from one container into another. :o)
Hee hee hee. Yes, I painted her toenails!
Hope likes water as much as Lydia did when she was a kid!!!
Throwing her Pooh Corner friends into the water to watch them splash and make Auntie retrieve them. :o)
Or, over the edge. Whatever struck her fancy.
She eventually got brave enough to get up and go after her own toys in the pool.
Chasing down that ball so she can throw it out for Momma to fetch!
One of those classic late summer afternoons. :o)

And now, here's a little one for Grandma Lorrie. Hope's really starting to talk, and you'll get to hear a bit of her jabber in the video clip. You'll notice she still signs for "please." Wins me over almost every time, except when it's not good for her to have what she wants. :o) "Hi-a" is Hope's version of "Hello." :o)

Lydia's Visit, Pt 1

Monday, August 9th, we made the drive back to Edmonton with Auntie Lydia keeping Hope company in the backseat, or keeping Josh company up front, depending on Hope's needs. :o) Lydia's diploma exam was the following day, so we gladly brought her with us in much anticipation of the realization of this long-awaited milestone in her life. She stayed with us for a day short of two weeks, and blessed us incredibly by her presence here with us and all her help in the house and yard!Tuesday morning as she was preparing herself for the exam, these flowers arrived from her dear friend, Betsy Shultz. (from Oregon) After a brief run for Lydia and Taco Salad for lunch, Josh drove her to her exam while Hope and I took a nap and made cookies to have as a celebration when they got home! Josh also had the special idea to go out for supper together that night, which was so nice!
I found this doll stroller for Hope at the Super Store in Lethbridge, and she really figured out how to get it going once we got home.
It's not designed to be able to turn, and Hope figured that out, along with her own way of turning it - picking it up! :o) Eventually, we convinced her that it was okay for a stuffed animal or dolly to ride in it!
When Langemanns were here in June, Lorrie found a little Winnie-the-Pooh house and critters that their kids used to play with. Hope loves it! She can't open the house on her own, but when she wants to play with it she totes it up to one of us to open for her! The other day she was playing with it, and only Piglet and Pooh were accounted for - Tigger was missing. Lydia had seen him on the floor somewhere, so she told Hope where to look for Tigger, and Hope went exactly there and found him, returning to us with the missing critter in her hands!
My dear little girl enjoying the rocking chair and a book while my dear sister Lydia and I got the nursery prepped for painting.
One of her looks. :o)
One day, Lyddie sweetly took time to make a batch of her legendary cinnamon buns, which are Josh's favourite. I make the same recipe, but they never turn out quite the same as hers. I was trying to watch to see what she did differently! ;o) The cinnamon buns were a hit, as always, and there's a jolly amount of them in the freezer for continued use. :o) Thanks, sis!!
Since we would have had to disassemble the crib to get it out of the room, we decided to just park it in the middle and cover it with a sheet, as we had some sanding to do in the room. You can see the green tape around the room, marking the division line for where the blue paint would start. We did the top a sky blue colour and left the beige/brown on the bottom.... you'll see in the following pictures!
The primer. Ah yes, it all looks so simple at this stage! The hours and hours of work were worth it though! We painted the whole nursery, plus the main bathroom and the ensuite bathroom.
Playing with her Winnie-the-Pooh house again.
Fair little one. :o)
Figuring out that door....
Josh was home this day, so he lent a hand in taking care of Hope so Lydia and I could paint ourselves crazy. I guess they went downstairs to do email after lunch, and she fell asleep on his lap! Good little gal - she knows when it's naptime!
Progress. Yessss!
I think Lydia was making a salad for supper. Hope must have seen water and "bubbles" in the sink and decided that was where she wanted to be!
Sunday afternoon at the park. Lydia and I took a walk with the babe while Josh graciously went out to Home Depot to pick up a few more small roller brushes which Lyd and I needed to finish the painting.
Laughter all around. :o)
She's getting to be a pro!
Oh yeah - sweet guy that he is, Josh also picked up Booster Juice for us for supper. Hope loves it! Looks like the cup is half as big as she is.
A Sunday evening game of Rummikub. At least, that's what the adults were trying to play.
Hope was playing "Knock all the chips off Daddy's Board."
I think Josh still won. He beat me anyways. Can't remember Lyd's score!
Quite content with herself! You should try Scrabble with this gal! She makes winning very challenging, as you must remember what letters you have before she gets her hands on them! Maybe Hope can sit on Auntie Melody's lap next time I play her! That way, I might have half a chance of not being skunked! :o)