Monday, July 26, 2010

Take One

The cute little matching subjects were there. The props were there. The setting was there. The concept, the camera, the mommy behind the camera, the willing assistant (thanks again Erin!!)... but NOT the attention spans!
So... take two will happen soon, but here's a few pics until then. Because let's just face it... I don't have a very good track record in the whole "taking my kids pictures when they're the actual age that I say they are in the pictures" thing.

Throw and Repeat

Alia and Avery, my parent's lab, are pretty much best buds. Alia leads Avery around the yard...bosses her around, then gives her hugs... plays "fetch" with her... gives her doggie treats... and best of all (in Avery's mind, at least) throws Avery's ball into the pond. That last one may sound simple but it's really quite the process!

Step 1 - Make the trek out to the pond

Step 2 - Say "Stay Awey. Stay. Stay Awey."

Step 3 - Throw the ball as hard as humanly possible

Step 4 - Be careful not to fall off the dock in pure excitement over seeing Avery jump into the water

Step 5 - Avoid getting drenched as Avery makes her way out of the pond, and straight to the throwers (or photographers!!!) side, to shake all the water off!

Step 6 - Repeat. Again and again and again!

Who Needs a Tent...

... when ya have a clothes hamper?!
Alia just made herself comfy and camped out for awhile.

Pillow? Check. Book? Check. Water bottle? Check. Bonfire? Marshmallows? Dark starry night sky? Maybe next time!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Larren and Beer Update

Whelp... just got back from the Dr. and the treatments that we did last week for Larren's milk, egg, and rice allergies worked great! She didn't react to any of those things at the appointment today, but we did a few more tests for sugar, pollen, mold, etc. and she does have a mild allergy to pet hair! Just one more reason not to have a pet in the house, I guess!!

The Dr. did confirm that she's teething... which would explain why we've had a cranky baby the last couple of nights! All in all, I'm pleased with how she's doing (now that I know she's teething and not reacting to the foods I'm eating!!) and am SO glad we found these things out before they got worse!

As for beer... well, not so grand! I had an outbreak of hives (which I've NEVER had anything remotely close to in my life!) so we checked today at the Dr. and sure enough, I'm allergic to beer! It's a good thing I've never been too fond of the stuff! I'm going to continue taking herbs and would like to nurse Larren as long as possible... within reason!

Hopefully the drama is done and we can carry on as "normal" from here on out!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

By The Way...

... we made it. I don't think I ever mentioned that WE'RE IN OHIO! We had a wonderful, wonderful trip. It went WAY better than I ever thought it would go! The girls were fabulous travelers, and I even managed to drive a bit while Jon caught some shut eye! It took us a little longer to get home than usual... 22 hours... but we drove straight through, we can only drive so and so fast! :)

And, as you can imagine... the girls are getting spoiled!

Larren is getting held by everyone who sees her... and getting tons of hugs and kisses on a minute by minute basis!

Alia plays and plays from sun up to sun down. There's never a dull moment... there's just SO MUCH stuff for her to do! Just in case she would happen to have a moment to twiddle her thumbs... my parents got her a few "treats" to keep her occupied...

She couldn't wait to try out the new pool... she went right in in cut offs!

Then we opted for a bathing suit

The pool even came with 6 cute little blow up fish!

Here is her surprise of all surprises... the "jumping bean", as she likes to call it!

At first she was in a bit of shock...

But she recovered quickly!

Gramma joined in on the fun too!

I'll keep ya updated, of course, but as ole' Dorothy would say... there's no place like home!!!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Beer? Are You Sure?

I haven't had enough milk for Larren and have tried a number of things to resolve that problem. I've been taking an herb that has definitely helped, but has started making my hips, knees, wrists, and ankles hurt... a side effect experienced by some people! Upon mentioning this to our Dr., she suggested beer... with a laugh! We were in the same youth group for crying out loud!
And you should probably know that I HATE beer. Absolutely hate it. It tastes terrible, is a waste of money, and is good for nothing, in my mind.

BUT... this is about the 8th time beer has been suggested... and I really, really, really want to nurse Larren. So... I'm giving it a shot. One beer a day for one week. This had better work, I tell ya!!


HOORAY!! We just got back from the Dr. and we have EXCELLENT news.

Even from a couple of days old (she's 2 days old in this picture!) Larren has been a considerably more difficult baby than Alia was. Gassier, fussier, etc. etc. People just said "Oh, all babies are different." and left it at that. Even our Dr. in Canada said that Larren was too young to run any tests, so if there was a problem we'd just have to wait until she was at least a year old to find it. He obviously didn't know how much my girl was crying and we looked for other routes. We made an appt. with my parents Chiropractor/Holistic approach Dr. for as SOON as we got home! And.... we were right.

Larren isn't just a "fussy baby"... she is allergic to milk, rice, and eggs. I had figured out the milk part, but had been drinking rice milk in place of cows milk... which only made things worse. Jon had suspicions of the rice allergy due to her being extra fussy after starting her on rice cereal a few days ago.

She had a treatment for these allergies and last night was the FIRST night that she went to sleep without a whole bunch of fussing before hand. She was practically asking to go to bed on schedule... and slept like a rock... AMAZING!! With the treatment I am able to eat rice, milk, eggs, etc. etc. without her reacting to it. And she shouldn't have problems with these foods in the future.

We're going back to Dr. Needler in a week, so we'll see how Larren does in the meantime! I can't even tell you how much hope this gives me! I'm praising God for a Dr. that is willing to dig a little deeper and asking that He will restore the months that were "lost" due to so much frustration, weariness, and hopelessness. I'm so excited to have our daughter "back"... we only saw glimpses of what she was like before, and even over the last day we're seeing HER, not a cranky babe. I love it!!

Monday, July 5, 2010

I ♥ SK

This past weekend (Thursday to Sunday) we made a trip to Saskatchewan for a visit with Jon's family. For 3 years now we've made it a tradition to "meet in the middle" for a weekend full of fun, reconnecting, and great food!

Ya know... Saskatchewan gets a bad rap quite often... but I really, really like it. The rolling hills, the wide open horizon, the hardworking mentality, the abandoned farm houses (that seem to tell a story all on their own)... I'm not sure why, but I find myself rooting for "the under dog!" We sold our farm in SK last year - and don't get me wrong, I'm VERY glad we did - but the more we visit, and the more I learn... the more I admire the people of Saskatchewan and all that the Province has to offer!

(Finding time to take pictures was a bit challenging with two kids... but here's a few to give you a glimpse of what our weekend was like!)

This year our tradition brought us to Trails End Guest Ranch, just an hour north of Regina. It was a quaint little ranch with cattle, horses, acres upon acres of land to ride on, great hospitality, and enough rooms to house our group of 15!

The "Remuda Room" was where we cooked our meals, ate, and hung out together... it worked out quite nicely!

My little diva, helping Gramma carry corn husks to the horses

And of course, they came in no time!

Alia would have stayed there all evening, had we let her!

The wonder of a child, eh?!?!

We had GREAT sunsets while we were there... but it just so happens their "bone yard" was west of the ranch, too! (Notice the open hood glowing in the distance?!)

It never ceases to amaze me... even though we're "camping", what a wonderful menu Mom plans! From roll kuchen (for my American friends, that is fried dough eaten with watermelon) to BBQ salmon with lemon sauce (with BBQ chicken on the side for those of us who aren't seafood lovers!) ... we eat GOOD!

My little sugar sugar...

My sister in law, Jen, had a brilliant idea of bringing an inflatable pool for the kiddos, and of course, Alia was pleased as punch!

Anderson watching on with excitement as Alia splashes around before dinner. Sadly enough, I wasn't able to get pictures of them splashing in the pool together (it's that having two kids and being a bit busy thing!)... but they did, and had a great time!

Just the girls went on a trail ride and even though I was feeling it the next day, it was SO nice to get out and spend some time together! After we got back Auntie Jer took Alia for a spin on "Liberty"

Then Alia got to try out the saddle for herself!!

Larren got to take a spin in Anderson's stroller, instead of a horse!

Being a little fishy in the "wa-wa"...

One more "put-Larren-to-sleep-walk" before it's time to leave!

Kids sure do add a different element to our family tradition! But, we have to look past the thrown off schedules, shortened nights, and seemingly extra long time it takes to do EVERYTHING, and just remember... it will only get better as the years go by!