Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Out Of The Mouth Of Our Babe

Everywhere we go people always comment on how extensive Victoria's vocabulary is and what a "good talker" she is for only being two, and how well she interacts. To us she is more than just good at talking, she is incredibly smart and so eager to learn. She soaks up everything like a sponge, uses words and sentences in the right context-and has been for some time now. I read library books to her once and she can repeat exact sentences from the story and retell the story to me after hearing it for the first time. She has quite the imagination.
She amazes us all the time as parents. We have had several jaw dropping moments with her. Some of the things that come out of her little mouth are just too funny not to share and I don't want to keep forgetting them. So from now on I am going to record them here. 

We were talking about 'The Little Mermaid' movie at dinner one night, specifically the scene when prince Eric falls off the ship into the water and Victoria says "uh huh, he got baptized."

On a Sunday afternoon Shawn and I were asking Victoria about nursery (her class at church) and her response was a deep sigh followed by "I'm just sick of it".

While listening to her 'Beauty and the Beast' audio book, when it got to the part about the beast giving Belle a library, Victoria says, "I wish I had a library!"

One evening Shawn was cleaning out all the cat hair from the vacuum and Victoria runs over and says, "Eww. What the hell?" Shawn and I were in tears laughing so hard...but trying not to laugh, ya know, trying to be good parents.

We were all playing one day and Shawn did something Victoria wasn't too happy about so she said "You're in timeout daddy, go to a TIMEOUT"! So Shawn goes up and lays in her bed. A couple minutes later she walks upstairs and:
Victoria: "Daddy? Dad?"
Shawn: "I'm in here, in a timeout. Can I be done?"
Victoria: "Will you listen?"
Shawn: "Yes."
Victoria: "Okay. Thank you."
And then she just walked back down stairs.

Kids say the darndest things! 

She is just hilarious and has so much personality. We love her and everything that comes out of that little mouth of hers...
well, almost everything :)

Monday, January 24, 2011

A Little Bit of Chocolate

Today started out a little rough and continued with non stop tantrums, screaming, crying, frustration, a few spanks (they were little ones with the diaper on...which don't even hurt anyway, and believe me it takes a lot of fed-up anger for me to spank and then of course I feel guilty the second after the spank is given. Plus we all know a spank to the bum solves absolutely nothing...only more screaming. So you end up coming a full circle.) I thought after nap time it would be better. Nope. I was in for round 2...or was it round 3, 4 and 5?
Turns out we both just needed some chocolate.
I should have fed her some for breakfast.

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Monday, January 17, 2011

Four And A Half Months Later...

Alright, it is time...this post has been in the works for a long time now, hiding as a draft. I keep having to change the title of it. It's hard to know what to start with when it's been so long and so many things have happened. I guess I'll just start with where I left off...


I am still in shock at how fast it all happened and was over and done with! No epidural. Just a bit of the narcotic to "take the edge off"...love that stuff. The epidural is just not my thing...long needle in my back? No thanks.
Anyway we dropped Victoria off at our friend's Eric and Hilary early that morning and told her we would be back for her after lunch...so I had a promise to keep. My eyes were on the clock during most of the labor ha ha. Shawn and I were checking in at the hospital and, "what? My name is not on the list to be induced today?" and not to mention the place was full of expectant mamas. I was on the verge of tears and ready to rip someone's head off at the same time (hormones+being a week overdue=not my best self.)but I kept my cool, they made some phone calls, and we were ready to go. No big deal. 
My RN, Brandy...I will never forget her! I wish I could have her for all my baby's births! She was hilarious, she felt like a best friend. Even though I had such an awesome nurse, she wouldn't have been able to replace Shawn. My one and only. I think I might have hurt his hand a few times, because he had to pass the hand squeezing off to the bed rail! He took good care of me though, as he always does.

I was started on the pitocin, the contractions hit and when they felt almost unbearable I asked for the narcotic. And just like last time I was at a ten before we knew it. I was feeling the urge to push so I started pushing. It felt better to push. The nurse saw that I was "baring down" on the monitor, came into the room and didn't quite believe me when I told her I was ready. She checked me, was a little shocked, told me not to push...she had to call my doctor...I told her to HURRY. It felt impossible not to push! I was afraid the Doc wasn't going to make it. I pushed for 10-15 minutes, out our baby came and onto my belly. For a second I had forgotten that I didn't know what I was holding in my arms...a boy or another girl. Then the doctor said something like "So what do we know about the sex?" I was about tell him it has been awhile, but then I realized what he meant and said "We don't know!", he told me to look and almost in unison everyone in the room said, it's a girl! Shawn saw it on the way out so he knew before I did.I was kind of shocked to hear "girl" I was pretty much expecting a boy. But nonetheless there we sat marveling at our second, beautiful, healthy baby girl, Nora, feeling overwhelmingly blessed and at the same time trying to process that we were parents now to TWO little girls.
Nora was born at 11:48am...I was able to keep my promise to Victoria...that we would be back for her after lunch.
Another blessing: Besides my "jelly belly" I didn't even feel like I had just given birth...really. I didn't tear,I was up and walking around right after, and I was barely sore. Don't ask me how that happened, because I wouldn't know what to tell you.
We were discharged from the hospital the next evening. I was so happy to be home.
The next couple of weeks that followed were emotional for everyone in the house. Probably more for Victoria and myself. It's an adjustment going from one to two, not just for Shawn and I obviously, but for Victoria too. She threw fits like I've never seen before, she cried and screamed louder than ever(never thought that was possible) and she wouldn't allow Shawn to hold Nora. There were many times that all three of us girls were in tears at the same time. The hardest thing was feeling like I was taking time away from Victoria, that it wasn't just me and her at home anymore. Victoria would always tell Shawn and I to put Nora down. She was still getting attention, plenty of it, but not all of it like she was used to.
That mess didn't last too long though. Nora fit right into our family and once Victoria realized her baby sister was here to stay she got used to the idea and even began to like it. Now she adores Nora and Nora adores her. It's sweeter than a cupcake with butter cream frosting watching my two baby girls together.
 Nora brought with her so much love and happiness! Her fresh little spirit reminds me of a great purpose. She seems to keep me grounded. I love her very much.
I can't believe how fast time goes. No matter how tight I try to hold onto it, it still seems to slip away all too quickly. In the past four months Nora has gone from this...

to this...

and here's the in-between...

Nora is just 3 days old here. I caught Victoria during her one of her calm, sweet moments when she actually was okay with her baby sister. And believe me there were not too many of those moments the first 2 weeks!

Sweet baby. They don't stay tiny for long.

Nora at one week...

Look at that face. I LOVE those newborn faces!

And I LOVE the many faces of Victoria.
The countdown to her birthday begins...1 week.
Victoria had to try out her new boots (from my sis Rose) as soon as she got them in the mail. The rain outside didn't stop her and her skeleton PJ's made it that much better.

Nora at 2.5 weeks.

Our first photo as a family of four. Nora was a week and a half.

 Sisters. Nora at 3 weeks.
Victoria turned 2 years old! She asked for Chocolate Chip Pancakes for her birthday breakfast, and that is what she got! 
Our Birthday Girl.
Two years? Really?! It's only been two short years but Shawn and I can't remember what life was like before our little babycakes was born. Sometimes I wonder if that's a good thing or a bad thing ha ha!

These are Victoria's birthday gifts she got just from us and the grandparents!Some of her gifts: play food for her kitchen (they are usually everywhere down stairs, all the time, all 120 pieces),Owl Babies-one of Victoria's favorites, Noah's Ark little people set, shopping cart, Barbie laptop, and much more. 
Sugar and spice and everything nice, that's what little girls are made of.
We celebrated Victoria's birthday with some friends and a Sugar and Spice party!
Here is Victoria getting ready for the party. I asked her to look at the camera and this is her classic face she gives, with a sigh and shake of her head. It makes us laugh every time.

The party animals: Victoria, Sierra, Eliana, Seth, Abrams, and the newborns; Nora, Jake, and the twins Maci and Dane.

Lollipop piƱata!

Victoria wasn't herself at her party, turned out she was really sick. Poor girl.

Victoria's birthday party table.

Nora at four weeks.

Nora's blessing day was simple and sweet. She looked so beautiful in her dress. We are so lucky to have her.
It meant a lot to have our good friends, Eric and Ryan Stephenson, Jon Blood and Bishop Brady stand in on the blessing.
Nora was five and a half weeks when we headed out to Utah for Casey and Tracie's wedding (Shawn's little brother).
The girls got to meet their new cousin, Savannah (Melissa (Shawn's little sister) and Justin's baby). Nora was a week late. Savannah was a week early. They were born a day apart. 
Most of my side of the family was able to come out to Utah to see us and meet Nora for the first time. Victoria had a blast with all of her cousins and LOVED her new pink Cowgirl boots that Grandma and Grandpa Waldron bought for all the Grandkids.
My parents with all the grandkids.
From left to right: Cody (4), Preston (1), Harlyn (21 months), Emma (almost 7), Victoria (2), Nora (6 weeks), and Madilyn (9).

There is nothing like the rush of running down a steep hill (Logan Temple's hill), not being able to keep up with your own two feet and feeling like the only way to stop yourself is to fall! So much fun.

Shawn and I left the girls with my family for a couple of hours while we were at the Temple. Apparently Nora missed us and wasn't up for any new faces...until my brother, Newt, held her. She would only stop crying for him. Maybe because she was trying to figure out what was going on with his hair!

It is impossible for Victoria to stay in one spot when we are in new places. There is just too much for her to explore. She was everywhere at Casey and Tracie's reception. I think she felt like a princess in a castle...
...then she hit the dance floor, or made up the dance floor, and tried to eat the cake before the bride and groom had their taste!
By the end of the night Munchkin #1 was exhausted and Munchkin #2 was wide awake.
The happy newlyweds.

Our little family. They make me so happy.

 Four generations.
The girls with Great Grandma Thomas, Grandpa Atkinson, and Daddy.

I love getting these pictures with grandparents and great grandparents. They are priceless.

Once we were back in Maryland we got ready for the fall with a trip to the pumpkin patch.
In search for that perfect pumpkin. One for Victoria and a tiny one for Nora.

Nora wasn't really into the whole pumpkin thing.

Victoria makes friends wherever she goes.

We had found our pumpkins, yummy acorn squash, fresh jam, and the best apple cider. As we were leaving Brad's Produce the tracker pulled up, so thinking it would be a quick hay ride, Shawn and Victoria hopped on. I stayed back with Nora. The hay ride ended up taking them to the "pick your own pumpkin" part of the farm and I sat waiting for 30 minutes.
check out the Ravens apparel in this picture. Thats how it is on game day or game weekend around here. Everyone wares purple or a Ravens jersey. Everyone. I felt like I should probably be a part of it all. I wanted to fit in around here a little better. So when I opened a bank account awhile ago I decided I better hop on the band wagon and went with the "Ravens fan" visa bank card.   

Bath time! Nora gets SO excited for baths. She squeals and shrieks, laughs and smiles.
Nora at 8 weeks.

 A Sunday afternoon nap.
Nora at (almost) two months.

Halloween 2010
This year's Halloween was so fun and I am sure they will keep getting better! Since Victoria LOVED Snow White...she just had to watch the movie everyday...my original plan was for the whole fam to dress up as characters from Snow White. Myself as the wicked queen, Shawn as the prince...he shot that down before I even finished asking him, so he was maybe going to be Grumpy, since he fit the character so well at the time (ooohh BURN)...(remember when it was so cool to say that?)Anyway, Shawn kind of wanted to be a ninja but there are no ninja's in Snow White. So Victoria was a beautiful Snow White and Nora was her poison apple. Shawn and I were just mom and dad. I made Nora's costume and had planned on making Victoria's but realized I was being a bit too ambitious with a new baby. 
Nora's poison apple costume won a prize at our Ward's Trunk-or-Treat for "The most edible". She got some glow sticks for the big win.

Nora at 9 weeks.

Loves her candy! Our ward's trunk-or-treat was HUGE this year and Victoria loved every minute of it.

Carving the pumpkin. 
Halloween night I took our little Snow White out trick or treating. She was so cute saying trick or treat! She saw a man dressed in a red checkered shirt and straw hat while we were out, "Look mommy, it's farmer Jed!" Farmer Jed is one of the fisher price Little People.

Nora helped pass out the pixie stix while we were out.

Our finished Snow White pumpkin.

Daddy and his girls.

Victoria loves making tents!

We attempted some family pictures.
Nora at 2.5 months.

Thanksgiving 2010
We spent Thanksgiving day with friends, Eric, Hilary, and Kye at the Stephenson's home.
Hilary's table looked so good. The day was filled with good company and good food.

Sierra and Victoria at the Kid's Table.
There's that look from Victoria again!

Nora loves Victoria and Victoria loves to have a little sister to play with. I found these two sweets playing like this...
Nora is 3 months here.

I love it.

Next came decking the halls.

Nora at 3 months.

Fred the elf came to our house for the first time this year. Victoria named him. He made sure Victoria and Nora were doing stuff to make the "nice list". He reported to the Big Guy every night and was back in the morning for the girls to find him in the new spot he would take. Victoria wasn't too sure what to think about Fred at first and she would never get too close!
After the house was holly and jolly we waited weeks for Santa. Almost every day Victoria would say, "I want today to be Christmas".

Victoria and Nora at 3.5 months.
Victoria's first ginger bread house!
You can tell that all Victoria could think about is how and when she was going to eat the candy stuck to the gingerbread house.

We attempted a visit to Santa but it ended with Nora pulling out a handful of his beard and Victoria screaming.

We just can't get enough of our beautiful girls. We love them so much.

I had come into the room from the kitchen and found then girls like this. Victoria had put some of her jewelry on Nora so that they both could play dress up! 
Nora was almost 4 months.

Christmas 2010
Our little Christmas Eve dinner.

Nora is almost always a happy baby.

Christmas Eve we opened our Christmas PJ's. My mom had them made...
Shawn loved his Christmas pajamas that I got him.
Introducing...The Sweat Suit.
When Shawn finished celebrating his sweats we acted out Luke 2 (the Christmas story) with Victoria's Little People nativity set and then Victoria set out cookies and milk for Santa and carrots for the reindeer. She was so excited to set out the plate for Santa, and it was so hard for her not to take a bite of the cookies.

Silent night. Finally, our babies had fallen asleep.

I had the hardest time sleeping Christmas Eve! I was just so excited for Christmas morning and to watch Victoria's face light up! And believe me, it did. We woke Victoria up and the first thing that came out of her mouth was her wanting to go see if Santa had eaten his cookies!
The girls had so many things to open. Victoria had to take a few breathers.
This is what she ended up with...

Our new laptops!

Nora's Christmas.

Shawn got the new ipod nano touch, but his favorite gift were his sweats.
Below is a picture of Shawn doing his C-steppin in his sweats. Hilarious to watch!

Playing with the new toys.

Yeee haaaw!

On Christmas day we went down to DC to have dinner and spend time with some of Shawn's cousins, the Palmers.
Although we missed our families, we had an awesome Christmas holiday!

Last weekend the girls got to meet their newest cousin, Avery Jane (Justin (Shawn's little brother) and Jessica's baby). Avery was born 2 months after Nora!

Nora was trying to show Avery how to do things, and Avery just tried to suck on Nora's hands! Very cute!

Victoria loved this dog Molly. At first she made Victoria a little nervous, but after Victoria fed her a few treats, and watched her do some tricks, she didn't want to leave Molly's side...until Molly got a little excited while chasing after a ball and knocked Victoria over! But still Molly was all Victoria could talk about when we were back home.

I think it was Justin, Avery's daddy, who made the comment about the picture below saying that Victoria wasn't too happy about babysitting!

At Nora's 4 month checkup she weighed in at 12lbs 12.5oz (a tiny bit below average) and for height she was a tiny bit above average.
She started rolling from tummy to back at 3.5 months. And tries to roll from back to tummy. She loves her cereal and we love all her smiles and laughing!

Phew! There, it's done. We are all caught up!