We had a wonderful holiday season. Thanksgiving was a Wisconsin year, so we ate here. We did end up traveling to the Mall of America Black Friday. We stayed in a hotel Friday and Saturday, and then we headed home on Sunday. We had a great time. Caden LOVED the rides at the mall. Here are some highlights:
Dada and Caden on a ride
This was too funny. Caden crawled into the cabinet under the TV in the hotel room. He then pushed out the drawer to look at us. Goofball!
The funniest (and saddest at the same time) was when Caden and Andrew went on the Wonder Pets ride. Caden thought it was fun, but poor Andrew was not a fan. Here is a video from it.
Saturday was also great because we were able to meet up with Joel, Mindi, and the kids for dinner. They got to meet Lilli. Stupidly, I did not take any pictures :( The kids seemed to have a great time. It reminded us how much we miss them.
Dec. 21st Danny and Samantha got married. They signed the marriage license at our house. We were the witnesses. We then celebrated with some yummy pizza. Welcome to the family, Samantha!
Christmas was also wonderful. This was an Ohio year, so we headed to Ohio after we were done with work on the 22nd. The kids did pretty well in the car. They didn't really sleep very much at all. We got into Aunt Chris and Uncle Johnny's pretty late. Caden was holding on to Baby Mickey when we went in. Uncle Johnny said, "Is that Mickey with you?" Caden said, "Actually, it's Baby Mickey." LOVED IT! His new word he loved at that time was "actually." I am proud to say that he uses it correctly.
We had a great visit in Toledo. Here are some pictures, but Ryan has most of them. I will put more on later after I get them from his phone :)
Here is Lilli with Grammie. We were really happy because she went right to her. She remembered!
Here Lilli and I are waiting for Dada and Caden to get off of the train at Tamoshanter.
Caden playing with Buzz and Jessie with his cousin Christopher.
Lilli lets "Aunt" Jennifer hold her. I love this pic because of Lilli's eyes.
We continued our family tradition of reading The Night Before Christmas before heading to bed Christmas Eve.
Again, we have more pics. I will update with the pics. Thank you, Aunt Ann for the majority of these pics from Christmas. I love them! I have to get more of them off of Ryan's phone.
We left Toledo on the 26th. Although we hate the driving, we do love visiting with the family.
The next day was also an important day, because that is when Ryan and I drove to Illinois (Trivoli) to pick up our little Minka. We didn't think we were ready to get a new puppy after losing Sassy, but my mom and Bill decided that it was time :) The place where we got her was 4 1/2 hours from Oshkosh. So, yes, that meant another entire day in the car basically. We were happy to get her though. Here are some pics:
On the way home!
Sleeping on the floor of the passenger's side while driving home.
The dragon by the castle :)
Minka checking out Lilli.
Minka loves her brother.
She has been doing very well. She has had accidents, of course, but we expected that. She and Bentley get a long very well. They are constantly playing. I vacuum all of the time thanks to their playing. For example, on Saturday I vacuumed the living room six times. Yes...six times. Minka clomps onto Bentley's fur, so there are always little puffs of Bentley fur all over.
The kids like Minka, too. Caden isn't too fond of it when she gets into her little feisty moods and chases him trying to chew on him, but other than that he is good with her. He is even a big enough boy to let them outside for me sometimes. When their playing gets to be too much, we put them outside to run off some of that energy. You can often hear me saying in the house, "Okay you two, go outside and play."
Lilli likes Minka, too. They have something in common. They both love to pull off her socks. Minka will grab the tip of it, pull it off, and run for it. Lilli thinks it is pretty funny. The only way to avoid this it to keep shoes on Lilli. She prefers to be barefoot though given the choice. We are happy that Minka is now part of the family. She fits very well with us.
Shortly after that we celebrated the coming of 2012. We had dinner with the family at Grandma and Bumpah's house.
Side note: Sadly, Caden no longer uses the word Bumpah. He now says Grandpa :( I was sad when this change took place. Lilli does say Bumpah, so that makes me happy. It just shows me that he is getting older. I used to love it when he called Grandma "Ba." That was a sad day too when he started to say Grandma. He is talking SO much. He is starting to drop things. He used to always use the "b" sound. For example, he would call Leonna "Beonna." I'm not sure why he did that. He now says Leonna. He still has a few that remain. He likes to call a computer a "beputer." Ryan and I have been working with him, so now he says "com-be-puter." :) I've been trying to write down the cute or funny things that he says. Sometimes it is hard to keep track of all of them. The other day he told me when he grows up and gets big he is going to drive my car and be a teacher like I am. I asked him if he wanted to be a teacher, or if he wanted to be an eye doctor like daddy. He thought for a minute, and then he said, "I want to be all." He wants to be a teacher eye doctor. I also loved it last week when he told me that Lilli is going to talk when she gets older. I told him that was correct. He said that they will talk together. Then they will build a fort to sleep in. They will not go to sleep because they will stay up and talk together and they will laugh. A parent couldn't ask for anymore than that!
Lilli is also my little talker. Her favorite word right now is "Minka." I think she hears us saying it to so often, that now she says it all of the time. She kept saying the word "why" yesterday. Since that is one of Caden's favorite words, I am not surprised by that. She still has the sweetest little voice when she says the word "hi."
Other things going on with Lilli...She LOVES to run, especially when she has something she knows she shouldn't have. For instance, she is really into pulling out our outlet covers. She will grab it, look at me, and run away squealing. She knows she shouldn't do that. Stinker...
I also have proof that both kiddos are mine. They both LOVE LOVE LOVE frosting. That alone proves it.
Did you notice the workout area? I have been using that quite often lately. We now have a family membership to the Y, so I workout there as well. I got tired of feeling crappy about not losing all of my baby weight, and then I realized that I have no one to blame except myself. Yes, I am really busy, but so are a lot of other people. I realized that working out needs to be a priority for me. I want the kids to see me workout so that also becomes a part of their lives. So now it is a priority for me. Even if I am really tired, or I don't feel like working out, I get at least 15 minutes in. I have also been going to spinning class at the Y on Wednesdays after Lilli's swimming class. It is killer, but also a lot of fun.
I have also renewed my interest and adherence to Weight Watchers. I am tracking everything I eat, and realizing that those extra bites of the kids' mac and cheese can add up :)
Nicole Josephs and I signed up to run the Oshkosh Half-Marathon in April. That will be a huge push to get back into great shape. I know it is possible, but at this point that seems pretty difficult. I even did a trial run last night to get my time for a mile. It was 13:40...ouch! We will see where I end up. My goal is to just keep pushing myself to improve my time. Like I said, I just really want to demonstrate to Caden and Lilli a healthy lifestyle.
I think that is a pretty good update for now. Of course, there is more, but that will have to wait for another day!