Wednesday, February 28, 2007

a mover and a shaker

I know this picture is a few weeks old, but I had to share another cupid picture.
Ruby is a crawler now! She can move around well, and everyday she gets faster.
She is finding all kinds of treats on the floor. Yesterday I removed the following things from her mouth: lint, a feather, a plastic toy part, play dough, paper, paper and paper (there is an unusually high amount of paper scraps around our house).
Ruby can also pull herself up on furniture. She is wasting no time becoming extremely mobile.

The Entertainer

As a mom, I have lots of jobs to do. On Sunday Alli tried to add to my list when she asked, "Mom, will you entertain me?" If you can ask that question, you can probably entertain yourself.

Snow fun!

We have had lots of snow recently, so to celebrate winter, we went sledding at the park across the street. We bundled everyone up and dusted off the sleds. Andy and I each pulled a sled with a girl.
The sledding hill isn't that big, but it is one of about three sledding spots in Chicago, so we are lucky that it is so close. The hill has a nice soft slope on one side and a steeper slope on another side.
When we got to the hill, I wanted Alli to try the gently sloping side. Andy was excited to get her going as fast as possible down the steep side. We have different approaches when it comes to playing... mom is the life guard, and dad is the stunt coordinator.
Alli liked my slow side until Andy hurled her down the fast side. That was much more fun. Alli didn't mind crashing either. She had a great time. Andy had fun too.
Ruby was content to sit in her little sled pod and watch all the action. Andy did take her down the hill once, but she didn't seem to notice.

The Sunday Marathon

After church every Sunday, Alli and her friend Clara run laps around the church. This tradition started almost a year ago when Andy was called to be in the bishopric. He was busy after church with meetings and I was pregnant and couldn't catch Alli. Clara's family stays after church too; her dad is the Bishop. So Alli and Clara started running around the church every Sunday after church.
Sometimes they get into trouble. They have set off alarms by opening emergency exits. They have hid with snacks behind the piano in the Relief Society room. Last Sunday they went into the chapel to speak into the microphone. Alli knows how to work the sound system, so their message was broadcast throughout the building. Clara and Alli took turns talking and singing into the microphone.
This is a picture of Alli and Clara running at Annaliese's party.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Help! I can't put my arms down!

Alli was delighted with the foot of snow that fell a few days ago. She wanted to go play in the snow, so we bundled up and went out on our patio. She may have been slightly over-bundled because she sat down in the snow and could not get back up. She did stay warm.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Little Cupid

Happy Valentines' Day! Nothing says "I love you" like a roly-poly cupid.

Monday, February 12, 2007

sick and tired

Alli got sick early Sunday morning. She had a fever and chills and she couldn't keep anything in her tummy for long. She got the shivers and said, "Mom, I am so cold my teeth are shaking." She slept most of Sunday. She is feeling a little better today, and she is eating and drinking more. Hopefully she will be her bright cheery self again soon.

First Kiss... almost

Ruby and Sam were born one week apart. They are fascinated by each other. On Saturday, Ruby almost got her first kiss. Sam went for her cheek, he was open-mouthed and drooling. Ruby turned and gently pushed him away. He smiled anyhow.

party time

Alli's friend Annaliese had a birthday party Saturday afternoon. The kids made birthday hats, played Elefun, sang fun songs, and decorated heart-shaped cupcakes. Alli especially loved singing and decorating cupcakes with lots of candy. Alli loves birthday parties, she can't wait for all of her friends to get older so she can go to more birthday parties.

Aunt Jen

Jen came to visit us... I mean Jen came to see Alli and Ruby while she was in Chicago for meetings. The girls were delighted to get so much love and attention from their New York aunt. Jen played My Little Ponies, read lots of books, made art projects and bracelets, and dressed up with Alli. Ruby just enjoyed tickles and cuddles with Jen. Alli was so sad when Jen left. We hope Jen has more meetings in Chicago soon.

Li'l Sailor Girl

Grandma Ohio sent this outfit for Ruby. She looked adorable in it. Alli said that she looked like a "Costco sample lady" with the hat (that is a great compliment, Alli loves Costco sample people).

Flour Power!

Alli and her friend Elijah made homemade noodles last week for chicken noodle soup. They had a fabulous time cranking the sticky, floury dough through the pasta machine. Both kids were dusted in flour by the time we finished. All of the cooking helped them work up a hearty appetite. We all enjoyed the chicken noodle soup, especially the little chefs.

Sunday, February 4, 2007

What the HAWK!?

This is not a firsthand account, but I thought it was worth sharing:
Saturday afternoon I was out and Andy was home with the girls when he noticed some commotion on the patio.
We have a wonderful patio in the courtyard of our building. Two other neighbors have courtyard patios next to ours. One neighbor puts out bird food to attract all kinds of city critters, and often there are pigeons who stop by for a snack.
The pigeons stopped by for their snack Saturday, but so did a hawk. It swooped down, caught and killed a pigeon on our patio. Andy and Alli watched the carnage for a while. Andy took lots of pictures. Alli asked lots of questions.

The hawk ate his fill and left a feathery, bloody mess in our planter as he gracefully flew out of the courtyard.

Saturday night we learned that if Squab is on the menu, it means pigeon meat. Interesting.

Very Cold Here

We went for a two block walk yesterday. We went to an openhouse for a preschool that we are considering for Alli. The temperature here has been in the single digits. We bundled up the girls. Alli rode in the stroller "toddler perch" clutching her muff to keep her warm. Ruby rode in the back of the stroller with the plastic weather cover down. Andy and I braved the cold for two blocks and came home to some hot chocolate.

Saturday, February 3, 2007

Rat scare

We have had more than our fair share of scary rat experiences since we have lived in Chicago, and I get really freaked-out about rats. That said, we have been rat-free since July.

I came down to my kitchen this morning only to discover that our leftover cornbread had been nibbled on and the butter had been nibbled on and smeared all over the table.

I immediately felt sick to my stomach. I got out the sanitzer and started cleaning up. I threw away half a pan of cornbread and half a stick of butter. I was so mad.

It turns out that our rodent was Allison. She came downstairs and got a snack for herself while I was in the shower.

That's why the rat put butter on the cornbread, and took the plastic wrap off and rolled it into a ball. The rat was Alli. It all makes sense now.

I am very paranoid, and sad that I wasted all that yummy cornbread.

Friday, February 2, 2007

Sweet Ruby

Ruby is getting more and more mobile. She can scoot around in a circle on the floor. She is an expert roller. She babbles "da da" (Andy loves that). She can eat Cheerios and animal crackers now, and she LOVES them. She thinks she is such a big girl. She sits up by herself, and she can get down on her tummy. She is very ticklish pretty much everywhere. We all love to hear her laugh. I think she will be crawling proficiently by the end of February. Watch out.

Project: quiet

For the last few weeks I have been working on a project with my friend Alison. We made quiet books for our kids to keep them occupied during church on Sunday (if you are wondering why kids need entertaining during church, read some of my old posts). Each page has a little activity to keep kids busy.

We worked on this project at Alison's house. Her table was covered with felt, scraps, notions, sewing machines, bags, supplies, etc. for two weeks. She patiently gave up the use of her dining room table. What a trooper! We combined our efforts; when one of us made a page, we made a second one for the other. The learning curve is pretty steep for this project. Many seams had to be picked apart and redone. We learned so much about our sewing machines and sewing in general. We also gave ourselves the title "Felt Masters" after all the felt cutting and sewing.

Our girls (she has three girls and I have two) entertained each other while we did our best to work on the project. Our most productive time was while Ruby and her twins napped and Alli and Annaliese played together.

We had so much fun working on these books, but we were glad to finish it up this week so we can use the books now (and show them off a little). They are super-darling!
Here are a few of our pages:

My Valentines!

These girls make my heart melt!
I like dressing Alli and Ruby in matching or coordinating outfits. Alli loves to match her sister. Ruby doesn't object to it (yet). Here they are in matching Valentines apparel. Oh so cute! Thanks Grandma Utah.

Bee Good

Alli loves to dress up in costumes, unfortunately she is outgrowing some of her favorites. The other day Alli squeezed into a little bumble bee costume and buzzed around the house. This costume is size 18 months. Alli is 3 years old.