Tuesday, November 27, 2012

20 Months Old

Ava will be 20 months old this week.  Jason and I can't believe what a big girl she is becoming.  We are both so in love with this age.  She is so expressive and excited about things.  If she sees you for the first time in a little while she will get so excited and say, "HIIIIIII!!!"

She now says several different phrases:

"Boo...I see you"
"I sorry"
"Whatcha doing?"
"It's ok," or "I ok"
"I don't know, Where she at?" (hands up in an 'I don't know' gesture - Jason had asked her where mommy is)
"I love you" - said that for the first time yesterday!  I was so happy!!
"I see it?" - for "let me see it," because mommy always says to her, "can mommy see that?"
"Thank you"
-and she is coming out with new ones all the time

She now answers appropriately when asked a yes or no question (who would of thought this would be a difficult skill :)).

The number of different words she says is just enormous!  She has new words all the time!!

She jumps with both feet off the floor now.  She loves to do ring around the rosy (even tried to make me play in the middle of the dinning room at UTM)!  :)

She goes pee on the big girl potty a couple of times a day (at least once).  And, she puts her baby doll on the  potty and says that she is "shooy." :)  Maybe we aren't as far from potty training as I thought.

We are enjoying all the excitedness and joy she gets from everything.  It really is a great age!!

Just wanted to get that stuff down so I know when she started doing it all.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

New words and new paint!

It has been a long time since I last wrote anything, but things have just kinda been status quo around here.  In just the last week or two though, Ava has started talking like crazy.  I swear Jason or I say, "I didn't know you knew that word," like 5 times a day.  It is crazy!!

She has started saying "please" and "thank you" WITHOUT BEING PROMPTED!!!  Her "thank you" is so cute because she gets so excited everytime she says it!!  We are loving it!!!

She knows several of her letter sounds, although not consistently, and recognizes letters wherever she sees them even if she doesn't know WHICH letter it is.   When we sing the alphabet song she has often said "Apple" instead of LMNOP in the middle of the song.  She really only says "A" and "YZ" clearly, but she tries so hard the rest of the song.  She will watch my lips and trying to say what I am saying, it really is soooo cute.

She is super into coloring and stickers, which is why I have pen on my wall and stickers all over the floor ;)  She is showing a definite preference for her left hand when coloring, J and I don't know what to do with that.  She still uses her right enough that we aren't sure yet if she is going to be a lefty, but she might!

She points to my belly often and says, "baby!"  She will also try to say Alana if you ask her although she is not very good at it.  When she is settling down for the night she will often lay her hand on my belly and Alana will kick her, I love it.  I really don't think Ava understands, but it is sweet none the less.

I am 27 weeks pregnant with Alana and starting to get antsy about what isn't done.  I know I have plenty of time and everything will be fine, but I am apprehensive none the less.  Alana's room is painted, but so far that is it.

It is a pretty blue color and hopefully the hot pink curtains will be up soon.  The crib is going to be in our room for the first couple months while I am nursing still at night so it will remain a guest room for now.  She has started moving so much you can watch my belly move sometimes, mostly at night.  She definitely has her routine awake and asleep times.  I am excited to meet this new little one and she what she looks like and if she shares her sisters's strong, stubborn, inquisitive, and adventurous spirit. 

Well I guess that is all for now.  Hopefully I will have more to write about soon.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

18 Month Snapshot

I meant to do this a couple days ago and just never got around to it:

Favorite Food: Mini corn dogs
Favorite Fruit: Bananas and Apples (not sure which she likes better)
Favorite Drink: Fake Lemonade
Favorite Vegetable: Peas
Favorite Toy: Car

She hates wearing shoes, well to be fair she dislikes wearing clothes in general.  She would be nudie all the time if I let her.
She would rather be outside playing with other kids than anywhere else.
She hates sleeping, but is getting better at doing it anyway.
She loves bath time.
She can say a TON of words and even makes 2 or 3 word sentences
She is obsessed with babies (dolls and real ones :))
and shoes (she just wants to have me put them on so she can take them off over and over).

That is my peanut in a nut shell ;)

Friday, September 28, 2012

18 Months and new little girl on the way...

It has been a long time since the last time I blogged.  I am really bad at keeping up with this, but as it is something for me to look back at down the road and remember what my children were doing, so I guess how often isn't really that important.

Ava will be 18 Months old this week and that just blows me away.  Has it been 18 Months already since I held her for the first time, 18 Months since I went into labor?  What a crazy 18 Months it has been, full of things I didn't expect (still not sleeping through the night at 18 months ;)), nursing her past age 1, no idea what I am doing and scared to death to be responsible for making Ava into a productive member of society and teaching her about Christ.  The day to day stuff I can handle, but making sure she learns her ABC's, 123's and knowing who God is...  I have NO IDEA what I am doing.  I really thought I would know what I was doing, that it would just come to me or something...I feel like everyday I am like ok, what can I do today to help her learn.  I have no plan :)  I am sure it will be fine and she will figure everything out in time, it just blows my mind the weight of this responsibility.  I had no idea I would feel it so keenly.

It is funny, every time she learns something new I am shocked...like "how did she pick that up?"  She amazes me everyday.  She now repeats words, and after only repeating it one or two time she can come up with it at a later date with no prompting.  That is just amazing to me.  Thanks to this leap frog movie "letter factory" she now recognizes letters.  She will point at letters on the outside of a store and say "A" or "E."  She doesn't always get the right letters, but I am just amazed that she gets that they even are letters.

We started a new sleep plan about 3 weeks ago and it has been coming along.  This is not a quick fix by any means, but we aren't going anywhere until after the baby is born so time is something we currently have.  We do bath and then we read her bible and then turn out the lights.  We say prayers and then sing "Jesus Loves Me."  Then I just stay with her in the bed until she falls asleep.  The first night it took an hour and 20min.  She  tried to crawl away over and over and would throw a fit when I would lay her back down.  Last night it took only 23 min and she only tried to crawl away twice, and never fussed when I would tell her to lay down.  I never had to lay her back down.  We are definitely making progress.  I am not expecting tonight to go as well, I am looking at this as two steps forward and one step back, but we are moving forward :)  The ultimate goal is to be able to read her book, pray, sing and then kiss her and leave the room.  Then she can put herself to sleep.  This could take awhile :)

On another note altogether, we are having another little girl :)  She is due to be born around Feb 12th and we are very excited.  I think Ava is going to be a great big sister, she loves babies and loves playing with her baby dolls.  I am excited for her as well, to be a big sister.  We cannot decide on this little ones name yet, but we have some time.  We have several we are throwing around: Alana, Abigail, Rinoa, Brienne, Rebekah, Madeline, Olivia and even some others although those are currently at the top of the list.

Here are the ultrasound pictures from my 20 week ultrasound, for whatever reason I cannot load them on fb:

Front view of the babies face - kind of like an alien

Leg bones

Little crossed legs - trying to be a lady :)


Arms crossed in front of her face 

Profile view of the face, with two little hands up there

Heart rate - and a view of the 4 chambers of the heart, albet not a good one

Little girly parts - sorry little one, had to save this one too even if it is embarrassing :)

Well that ended up being much more long winded than I had meant it to, but that is alright.  It was a good one.  Can't believe me little girl is 18 Months old.  18 Months and so much fun!!
Loves to eat apples whole :)

Obsessed with shoes 

Loves her toy car, every time she wants to go outside she says, "car?"

Loves playing with her baby doll, pushes it in the stroller and gives it rides in her car

Big girl on the caboose at the train park

Don't I look pretty with my bow?

My beautiful little girl!  I love her so much!!

Monday, August 27, 2012

New words and Epiphanies!

Ava is getting bigger everyday!  She is learning new words all the time.  She says, "up," "down," "roar," "meow," "done," "shoes," "sigh (for outside)," "kide (for slide)," "Mah-ee (for her friend Molly)," "cup," "wawa (water)," "tickle-tickle-tickle," and these are just a few of the new things she is saying all the time.  She definitely is like her daddy.  She will try to figure something out for awhile before getting frustrated.  She finds lots of different ways to try and complete her objective (i.e. bring my cell phone up the ladder for the slide with her or buckle her own seat belt).    She also figured out how to turn on the washer and dryer.  It is AMAZING to me how much she learns just by watching!  I love my little girl!!

I also realized in the last couple days that I expect more from my daughter than I do from myself.  As you all know, sleep has been the bane of our existence throughout Ava's entire life.  It has been much better in the last several weeks.  She typically wakes once a night sometime between 2 and 4 am.  Last night she woke 3 times and I found myself very frustrated, but I realized something.  I sometimes wake several times in one night, whether with indigestion, having the use the restroom, weird dreams, or just a mind that doesn't want to shut down.  I don't always fall back to sleep immediately either.  Why then do I expect my daughter, who is just learning to sleep through the night, to do better than I do?  It is easy to get frustrated with her and annoyed that she is not doing exactly what I would like, but I need to remember that she is also probably annoyed that she is tired and not sleeping.  Now if I can just keep this in mind at 3 in the morning :)

That is all for now.  We are finally home after being gone visiting family for 3 weeks.  Thankfully it was pretty pain free to get back into our routine.  Lots of fun things coming up with the Soybean festival :)

Monday, August 6, 2012

Been a long time...

I haven't posted in awhile, because not too much is going on right now.  We are in North Carolina visiting my parents.  My cousin Erin's wedding was this past Saturday.  Beautiful wedding, beautiful bride.  For the daddy daughter dance they did "Little Miss Honkeytonk" which is their song.  My Uncle Brad comes out dressed in full country attire.  Blue jeans, ball cap, and cut off jean shirt.  IT WAS AWESOME!!!

Ava even did well at the wedding.  Thanks so much to my parents and my sister Tina for watching her all afternoon and through the wedding so I could get ready with the bride and take pictures, etc.  It worked out really well.  I swear my daughter must not like weddings, between her fever and new molars at my brothers wedding, and her fever, trip to the ER, double ear infections, and UTI at my cousin's wedding, it was stressful.  Why she can't just be her wonderful self, I don't know.  She has to keep me guessing I guess.  She looked cute at the wedding though.

My parents have a cat named Boots who meows very loudly and very often.  So Ava has taken to meowing back at him very loudly.  It is absolutely the cutest thing.  I am hoping I can get it on video to share with everyone else.  It makes me laugh every time she does it.  We are enjoying our time with my family, but we miss Jason big much.  Ava will often walk around the house saying "daddy" or walk up to the door and say "daddy?"  Poor thing.  She will be super excited when she sees him on Friday.  Well that is about all for now.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Our little helper

Been a long time since I blogged...I have been lazy.

Ava is currently in the wanting to help phase.  She wants to help mommy and daddy do everything.  She wants to help me with the laundry.  She will pull something out of the dryer and then hand it to me to be hung up.  She puts things in the trash if you ask, and she wants to put her dirty diapers in the pail after we change her.  She also likes that she then gets to put hand sanitizer on her hands, she likes doing that too.  She is such a big helper.  You can also get her to clean up, sort of, she pulls everything back out like two seconds later.

She also has started thinking it is hilarious to put her forehead to yours.  She even does it to the cat :)

She now often at least tries to repeat something if you say it to her.  For instance, if you say "say pink" she may repeat everything but the 'k'.  She is coming out with new words all the time, and using the words she already knows even more appropriately.  It is amazing how fast she is growing and changing right now.  She also is obsessed with babies.  If she sees a baby on tv she will point and start jabbering, and loves to see other peoples babies (she can be a little rough though so we are trying to learn to be gentle).

She still would prefer to be outside, but it has been so hot lately that those times outside have been few and far between.  Hopefully next week will be a little cooler and we can get out more.

Hopefully this gives you a little Ava fix.

Monday, July 2, 2012

15 Months - words I am saying!

Since Ava just turned 15 months old and seems to be saying more words everyday, I thought it would be a good idea to make a list of what words she is saying now, and then again maybe in 3 months.

Words she says:
Cat/Kitty (although usually cat)
Yes (although usually it is No)
Dog (although usually even the dogs are cats)
She tells us she is hungry by saying "mmmm" it is really cute!

She has even said "mama down" once.  And, I think she may have called my friends son Ben a couple times and his name is Benjamin, so that is pretty good.

Can't think of anything else at the moment so maybe I will add more later if I think of them.  Problem with Ava is she doesn't perform, she says something when it is appropriate, but if you say "Ava can you say..." she won't do it.  She has started mimicking actions and that is super cute.  She will pretend to brush her teeth with her toothbrush, or her hair with my hairbrush, or she will take my contact case and pretend to open it and put her contact in her eye.

She knows where her belly button is, where her eyes are, ears are, head is, and toes are.

I guess that is it for now.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

15 Months and Loving Every Minute of It

I am really enjoying this stage of Ava's life.  She is just so much fun now.  New words are coming out all the time.  She loves giving high fives, kisses, and hugs.  She is so curious about the world around her.  She will stand outside and turn around pointing at everything and talking.  She is so much fun to play with.  She is still pretty whiny so I have started working on that.

She loves putting on and taking off my shoes.  She likes to put them on me, she will bring them to me while I am in the living room and put them on and off and on and off.  Now she like to have them on herself.  Jason was watching her yesterday and she brought him my shoes and had him put them on her feet and she would take one step and they would stay on, so she would just take off and run right out of the shoes.  She would then look back see the shoes on the ground, get frustrated, and bring them back to daddy to start all over again.

She loves her daddy.  She does a little "daddy dance" when he comes home.  She squeals and stops her feet really fast.  She is also his little drummer girl.  She likes to drum on anything that is the correct height.  She will even drum on her own tummy.

She has started putting her arms out behind her sticking her neck out jabbering and then taking off.  It is the funniest thing to watch.  Not sure if she thinks her arms behind her will help her run or fly.  :)

She now consistently will find her belly button if you ask her where her belly button is.  She says and will find "eyes."  Hopefully you don't mind her poking you in the eye :)  She also has said and pointed to her nose, head, and toes.

She also listens if you ask her to go pick something up and then put it in a box or, put it away.  I guess this means we can start cleaning although she will just pull it all back out again :)

She now is in a toddler bed and had no trouble going from the crib to the bed, she likes that she can climb off her bed and meet me at the door after her naps.  She is sleeping much better over all.  She only wakes once a night if she wakes at all.  We are still having a fight about the going to sleep part.  She doesn't ever want to go to sleep, but is better once she is asleep.

I think she may be afraid of the dark.  We turned off the wipe warmer which was acting as the night light in the room, and she refused to walk in the room to go to bed one night.  I thought maybe she just didn't want to go to bed, but then the next night she woke an hour after going to bed and refused to go back to sleep in her room.  So last night I turned on another night light and she slept in her room just fine.

She has now cut two of her molars, and of course had to cut one at Josh's wedding, making for a VERY fussy baby.  Sorry Josh and Anna :)  She looked super cute though :)  It was a wonderful wedding and I am so happy for both of them.  I can't wait to see pictures from their honeymoon in Jamaica!

Unrelated, we are going to have a new addition to our family in February.  We have seen the heartbeat on the ultrasound so that makes it official.  I am wondering if this one is a boy.  My pregnancy has already been SO different than it was with Ava.  With Ava once I started having morning sickness I had it every single day.  With this one I have only had it a few times a week and then the other days I feel fine.  For instance Tuesday morning was the first morning I actually got sick, but then I felt fine until today and then I am nauseous this morning.  I have had more food aversions this time around.  I really didn't have any with Ava.  I will not want food I normally love, or I will look at something and think it looks good, but once I start eating it I don't want it anymore.  Like, I cannot take another bite.  It is really weird.  I guess we will just have to wait and see.

Sorry this post ended up being super long, I had lots to get down about where Ava is now since it has been so long since I last posted.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

New words, car washes, and petting zoos :)

Well everyday is surely an adventure.  Ava is changing everyday. 

She says new things (or things she has said before, but more consistently).  Her friend Molly has a dog and it was outside barking and she pointed and said "Dog!" several times over and over.  This is a big deal as usually she calls their dog a "cat."  Just today she pointed at Jason's eyes and her eyes and said "eyes."  Woo hoo, the "head, shoulders, knees, and toes" song is starting to work :)  She already will often (but not always by any means) touch her head and her toes in the song.  Now she will actually say "toes."  She said, "up" for me a couple times when she wants to be picked up.  The only issue with Ava is, if she doesn't want to do something she won't.  So even if you know she knows how to say something, if she doesn't want to do it she won't do it :(  She is very stubborn :) 

She has so much personality it just blows me away.  She is so expressive when she jabbers at you I really wish I could understand what she is saying.  She loves to help with whatever we are doing.  She will pull the clothes out of the dryer one by one and hand them to me so I can hang them up (and gets frustrated if something she is trying to get out is stuck under something else).  She helped daddy wash the car by dunking the sponge in the bucket and scrubbing the car with it.  It really doesn't take her very long to pick up on how to do something.  She loves to use hand sanitizer.  You pump some into her hands and she scrubs her hands around.  So super cute.  In fact, we went to a little petting zoo at UTM and she kept going over to get the hand sanitizer, it was her favorite part.  She loves to play and make you laugh and make herself laugh.  She really is such a joy.

She has been sleeping better (MUCH) lately.  It is like she just decided one day that she wanted to sleep.  She has slept completely through the night once without waking.  Then most other nights she only wakes one or two times (and goes back to sleep really fast).  A couple times I have even been able to go in her room, help her find her paci and lay her down without ever picking her up.  This I can handle :)

She is cutting her molars so if she stops playing she gets pretty fussy.  I feel bad for her, they are very swollen and one has already cut through the gum.  She tries to chew on everything, but sometimes this just causes her to hurt herself.  I always feel bad then, poor thing.

We went to a petting zoo on UTM's campus this week and Ava had a lot of fun, so did I for that matter.  The only thing she was afraid of was the camel.  He was awfully big and liked to lick you, which is incredibly weird.  She tried to free the kangaroo by tugging on the door of his cage.  They had lots of other things Ava enjoyed.  Goats, bunnies, piglets, a donkey, a llama, some sheep, chickens that looked like cotton balls with legs, baby ducks, a hare, a turtle, and of course the camel. 

She plays more by herself more often now (mommy doesn't always have to play with her which allows me to accomplish somethings).  The only problem is that she doesn't stay in one place very long, so I will turn my back for a second and she is gone and I have to go find her.  More often then not she is in our closet or bedroom for whatever reason.

Well, that is about all for now.  Life with our squirrel is never dull.

Sunday, June 3, 2012


So, last night Ava slept from the time I put her down until the time I went in her room this morning.  WOOT!!  Ava went to bed late for her at 9pm (she took a late nap after the birthday party, so went down late).  At 6:30AM I went into her room because I was like, "what in the world!"  She was laying in bed awake and started talking to me as soon as I came in.  She was happy!  I brought her into our bed for her morning nursing and then we started our day.  I was sooooo happy.  Now if only she would do this more than once....

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

New Teeth, homade popsicles, and new words

I have been meaning to blog for a week or so now and it just never happened.  We haven't been doing anything super interesting just day in and day out.

Ava now has 7 teeth!  She cut another bottom tooth last Thurs and is trying to cut at least one more.  This one wasn't nearly the production her teeth usually are.  I was talking with a friend about how I thought she might be cutting a tooth and stuck my finger in her mouth and there was the tooth!  This next one hasn't been quite as painless.  She has had some crying in her sleep last night and tonight.  Tonight she has been so restless, cries and thrashes in her sleep even when I pick her up.  Wish she was out of the crib so I could lay next to her until she calmed herself back to sleep.  I feel so bad for her.

Ava has enjoyed following daddy around the disc golf course in this nice weather.  One of her little friends was also there the other day and they had a blast.  Throwing discs and just running around in the grass.  They were so much fun!

Ava has also had a lot of fun playing with daddy at home.  She is going to be so sad when daddy goes back to teach next week.  She likes to play on his drums and bounce on his lap.  She is really becoming a daddy's girl.

She has started to say a few new things.  Has said "tay tu" (thank you) a couple of times now although will of course never do it on demand.  She will also answer "oooo" for "what does a cow say?"  She still hasn't learned to say "yes."  Everything is no, even when she means yes.

On a completely unrelated note, there has been a yellow cat wandering around our neighborhood for several weeks now.  He is super nice and super friendly.

We decided we were going to take him to the vet and if he was healthy bring him home.  Then today he hasn't been anywhere to be found.  So sad :(  I am ready for another cat, but Jason isn't quite there yet.  I swear people are trying to torture me with cats.  2 different people are giving away super cute kittens on swap shop for free today.  A well I guess I will have to enjoy the ones I have :)

Almost forgot to mention the homemade popsicles.  I made a few popsicles with frozen strawberries, blueberries, and white grape juice.  They were a big hit with Ava and I even thought they tasted good.  I will definitely be keeping a running supply of these this summer.

We are enjoying our time together before Jason has to go back to work next week.  Thankfully his summer schedule isn't super time consuming.  We will still get to see him everyday from lunch on.  Ava is such a ham.  Her laughter is just the best sound in the world.  She has even been sleeping a little better the last couple days (although tonight is looking to be not a good one).  Well, that is all for now!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Visiting with family

We are here in NC visiting my parents and having a great time.  We celebrated my dad's birthday Saturday, Mother's Day Sunday, and my Mom's birthday today.  Ava has taken to everyone great, even my sister whom she hasn't seen since Christmas.  Only hiccup is that she isn't sleeping well here (big surprise!).  She doesn't like the pack-n-play at all.  It is too far for me to lean over and lay her down, so I have to drop her the last 2 inches or so.  It is very narrow and she moves around in her sleep alot so she wakes herself up running into the mesh walls.  So after fighting with it for a couple naps we just laid a blanket on the floor and laid her on top.  She liked this much better. 

Mother's day we had a TON of people in my parent's house, it was great!  It was us, my parents,  my brother and his fiancee Anna, my sister, my Nana and Papa, my Aunt Lynn and Uncle Brad, my cousin Erin and her fiancee Joel, and her cousin Luke.  I love having a house full of family.  After dinner we all went to see my brother and Anna's new house.  It is beautiful.  Lots of character.  Even has a "Harry Potter Closet" as my brother calls it.  It goes from the entrance hallway back into the spare bedroom on the bottom floor.  Their kids will think that is super cool.  Narnia anyone?  They have a large red lab named, Red.  Ava thinks he is super cool.  She likes to try to grab his face and let him lick her hands, she thinks he is funny.  She has to be held by someone whenever he is around though, he is about 100+ lbs of puppy and will knock her over in 1 sec.

Today was my mothers birthday so my sister and I braved the crazy thunderstorm and torrential rain to get a cake.  At one of the grocery stores I pulled my pants up past my knees and ran into the store.  The store was freezing when we got in, so I went to pull the hood of my hoodie over my head and it had water in it, got a shower in the front of Harris Teeter.  Nice. 

I felt today and Ava FINALLY has 6 teeth.  The last of the four top front teeth has taken FOREVER to come in.  I have been able to feel it past the gum line now for about 2 weeks.  I was actually beginning to worry there was something wrong, but today it had cut through the last little bit of gum covering the tooth.  WOO HOO!

Got a little bit of nice weather after the storm to try out my parent's neighborhood pool.  Ava LOVED it.  The "kiddie" part is 1.5 ft deep which is too deep for Ava, but she enjoyed going down the little baby slide with mommy.  They also have a 1ft deep area that doesn't have any fun water toys in it, but she had a blast just walking around and climbing up and down the one step.  Hope we have some more water fun before we leave. 

Also, last night I had a REALLY hard time getting Ava to go down and got really frustrated.  Don't know if you know or not, but my daughter just might be the worst sleeper of all time.  She hates going to sleep and still at 1 yr old + wakes 3+ times a night.  If she has a really good night she only wakes 2 times.  So anyway, Jason and I talked and decided that he was going to start trying to put her to bed at night (we had tried before and she just screamed) and I was going to night wean her (which I had almost done before but had gotten lazy).  So tonight was the first time for Jason to try to put her to bed.  SHE FELL ASLEEP IN 10 MIN!  I couldn't believe it.  I think I might throw Jason a party.  So happy.  I now feel like I can breathe and really share some big responsibility with Jason, and maybe go out at night every once and awhile.

Last bit of news: got a new computer.  So excited.  Got a Dell again.  Had a Dell in college and it lasted 8 years.  Since then we have had an HP (lasted 1.5 years) an Asus (lasted 3 years), and Jason has an HP for work (which has already had the hard drive crash on it).  So we decided to go back to Dell and hopefully have some better luck.

Hope you all had a WONDERFUL mothers day.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Beautiful day and lots of Swimming!

We had a GORGEOUS day today, blue skies and HOT HOT HOT!!  I decided it would be a great day to blow up her pool.  I invited friends over and filled the pool while she was down for her nap so the water would be nice and warm for the kiddos.  Ava LOVED it. 

She walked around and splashed around the pool.  I was pleasantly surprised.  Sullivan wasn't as sure of it at first, but very quickly warmed up to the pool experience.  Rachel and I were wishing the pool was bigger so we could get in as it was 90 degrees.  After the kids were done we went inside for a little while for some much needed AC and refreshments.

Afterward we went outside to see some friends from the neighborhood and sat in the shade to let the little ones play and visit.  Ava was dressed in a cute bubble but decided she wasn't done with the pool and walked across the yard and jumped in.  I had NO IDEA a diaper could get so full of water!!  I ended up stripping her naked and letting her play in the pool some more.  Molly got in as well and filled her diaper with water. Braydon was already dressed for his picnic later, but managed to splash himself enough mommy had to take him home to change before the picnic.  I think it is safe to say the pool was a hit!  We will have to continue to bring out the pool and let the kiddos splash to their hearts content.  We have a date with Molly's pool tomorrow so lots of fun ahead.

At Awana tonight Ava was really fussy toward the end and ready to head home to bed so I packed up our stuff and got ready to go.  All of a sudden (it was music time) the song that says "do you feel the beat, wanna make you wanna jump, jump, jump..." came on and Ava started kicking her legs in my arms and smiled real big.  I put her down and she clapped and giggled and danced in circles it was so much fun to watch I danced right along with her.  I know I looked ridiculous (I saw you laughing at me, Rachel) but her joy is infectious and she won't let me dance with her forever.

Well, goodnight everyone.  Enjoy the weather :)

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Life with a toddler

It is crazy to think that I officially have a toddler.  I mean she has been walking for awhile, but it takes a long time for my mind to switch over from baby to toddler. Don't get me wrong she is still a baby, but there is definitely a distinction and change with "toddler."  She never crawls anymore and had her first skined-knee this week :( She didn't like the band-aid though.  She lifted up her leg and yelled so I just took it off, it wasn't bleeding very much anyway.

I am nursing a toddler.  Never thought I would say that.  My goal was 12 months, but then we reached her birthday and the day after her birthday was the same as the day before her birthday and I couldn't tell her, nope no more nursing because you are 365 days old :)  Also, the WHO recommends nursing through age 2 so I am not pushing it.  There are also some serious upsides to still nursing: she has a great source of liquids when she has diarrhea which she had a week ago, it is a great way to soothe boo-boos and teething pain.  Really, she doesn't nurse much anymore.  4-6 times a day and for 2-5min total.  I think she will wean long before we reach age 2.  I am sure I will miss it in some ways and be glad for it in others (the acrobatic nursing can be really annoying).

She is seriously a dare devil.  She can't just walk around, no, she has to climb on anything available and test every limit mommy puts in place.  She was playing a beach chair and tried to climb on the arm and promptly fell over the arm before I could reach her.  She doesn't cry very much when she does hurt herself, at least not for very long.  She gets over it, gets up and keeps moving.  She is scared of NOTHING.  Well, except her friends toy elephant go figure!

She tries to talk so much now.  Mostly she talks nonsense, but she chatters on constantly.  She tries to mimic words often, "bees" for frisbee, "nanas" for nurse, "stop it," and many others.  I love to listen to her talk.  She really thinks you can understand her.  I just smile and nod.  

She now knows two body parts, her head and her toes.  We sing "head, shoulders, knees, and toes" every day in the bath and she now will point to her her head and toes, but that is as far as we have gotten.  She also rubs her thumbs and forefingers together for "itsy, bitsy spider" which is so adorable.

I can't believe how much she changes all the time, it is overall very gradual but when I look at how little she was just a couple months ago it floors me!

Well, that is all of the updating for now.  Hope you are all enjoying the warm weather!  I know we are.  I think I will get her pool out tomorrow.  Good night!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Sleep and Other Things

So I can officially say it.  Ava slept through the night!!!  She slept from 945 until 6am without waking up once!!  Then last night she slept from 11 until 445, and the only reason she woke was because we had a huge clap of thunder that woke me as well.  Woo hoo!  Now only problem, she wakes an hour after she goes down and takes really long to get back to sleep.  Before I could get her to go to sleep easily, but she woke up often during the night.  Now, she took an hour and 45 min the first night and 2 hours the second night.  Why can't I have both.  Goes to sleep quickly and stays asleep all night.  Well, beggers can't be choosers and I would rather have her sleep when I want to sleep :)

She now waves and says "Hi" which is really cute.  "Cat" is officially "gat."  I swear sometimes I look at her and think she acts so much older than her age, then a minute later she is all baby.  She is so much fun most of the time.  She is SO independent and stubborn.  She wants what she wants (usually not what she is supposed to have) when she wants it.  If you tell her to wait she yells at you (we are working on that - not acceptable behavior).  She is very clingy, but at the same time is willing (and will ask) to be held by women she sees often (friends).

She is walking EVERYWHERE, and only wants to walk.  She of course doesn't want to walk in the direction you want her to walk in.  Usually she is trying to walk in the opposite direction.  She is so cute toddling around.

Having a child is so awesome and having a walking child is so energy consuming!!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Cake and Chickens

Didn't write a blog after Ava's party on Saturday, so it is about time.  Everything went really well.  I made Ava's cake.  A care bear cake no less :)  Nod to my childhood, plus they are cute :)

Only problem, apparently Ava doesn't care so much for cake.  Just another way she is her father's daughter.  Although she does like cream puffs.  The next day we went to a buffet with cream puffs and I decided to give her one and see how she like it.  She loved it! Giggled and squished it in her fingers and all over her head.  It was super funny.  Really wish I had gotten it on tape.  Will definitely have to try that again.  At least she has figured out the opening present thing since Christmas.  She pulled the tissue paper out to get to gifts and ripped the paper.  I was very proud of her!

On a completely different note I took her to Rural King today and they had a ton of baby chicks for her to look at.  I let her pet a couple and she tried to grab one out of my hand and squish it.  Oops, mommy needed to hold on tighter and help her pet the chick.  They really were so cute.  What was the greatest though is as soon as Ava saw them she said, "Duck!"  I was so happy!  She saw something that looked like the baby ducks in her book and called it a Duck! Granted they were actually chickens, but details, details :)

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Progressing by leaps and bounds

Over the last week our little squirrel has progressed by leaps and bounds.  She is now walking all over the place.  She almost never crawls anymore just walks.  She thinks she is faster than she is, so every once and awhile she trips on her feet and goes down, but she gets right back up again.  She doesn't like to be held anymore and wants to walk everywhere, which is a little bit of a problem because she is still SO SLOW!  :)

She now consistently says "Dog" and will say "Woof, woof, woof."  Which sounds more like "Woove, Woove, Woove." :)  We were visiting friends and they have a dog, and she told me Ava chased the dog around saying, "woof, woof, woof."  She also is more often saying "cat" and "geow," which I am guessing is meow.  I even got "Cow," and "Moo" once although she hasn't repeated that yet.

This week she also started saying, "Dada" when she sees Jason, or to get his attention.  She has been saying Dada for a while now, but this was the first time she said it when he came home.  Usually she just squeals and gets very excited.  She is a daddy's girl now.

As of this past weekend Ava now has 5 teeth!  She is definately getting at least one more and I cannot wait until this set of teeth is done.  She is more than a little fussy :)

Can't believe how much she is growing and changing now.  She is lots of fun and we love (almost ;)) every minute with her!!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

What Progress!

It is amazing to me how much progress she is making right now and how much she is learning.  I haven't had a chance to sit down and write a blog post in awhile so I sent myself a couple quick blurbs so I would know when things happened.

If you read either or both of those you know Ava started taking 4-5 steps between Jason and I a little over a week ago.  She is already walking all over the place.  She always starts by walking.  She pushes off an object and walks for as long as she can then sits and crawls the rest of the way.  The most we have seen is 27 steps and we got that on tape :)  She is steadier every day and we love it!

She has also made steps in the vocal category as well.  She now says "Uh-oh!," and drops things just so she can say it.   She also asks questions a lot by putting her hands up and and inflecting her voice.  Most of the time I have no idea what she is asking, but it is super cute.  I also don't know where she picked up the hand thing I don't do that I don't think.  It is amazing to me how many things I don't notice I do that she has started to mimic.

I try to keep her clean and so if she sticks her hand in my plate at dinner I will take her hand and lick off her fingers if I don't have wipes handy.  At dinner last night she tried to pull the bowl of salsa toward her to dip her chip in and got her fingers in in the process.  I didn't even notice until she stuck her fingers in my mouth to clean them off.  Guess I need to stop doing that or she is going to be sticking her fingers in my mouth all the time.

She has become a daddy's girl all of a sudden.  She reaches for him out of my arms, will walk around the house says "Da-da-daddy" and if we are awake when he leaves in the morning she will whimper when he leaves.  It is really cute and Jason loves it.

She also mimicks "open-shut them" but mostly does the "roll them" part and the "blow a great big kiss" at the end.  She will sometimes open and shut her hands and clap with the song, but usually as soon as I start singing it she starts rolling her arms.

We are LOVING every day with her.  She is so fun and so cute.  I love listening to her talk and laugh. It really is great and worth every frustrating moment.

Sunday, March 4, 2012


So it is official!  Ava took a few steps between Jason and I several times in a row.  Won't be long now and she will be running all over the house!!  Now if only those teeth would come through!!

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Just wanted to post this so I remember.  Ava did "Open, Shut Them" with me twice yesterday.  Need to video tape it ASAP.  It is the cutest thing!!  We tried to video tape it today, but she wouldn't perform.  Will try again tomorrow!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Ava learned a new game today: Keep Away.  Not really sure where she learned it, I think I may have played it with her ball a couple of times, but now she thinks it is just the funniest thing.  She will hold the ball out to you and then when you reach for it pull it back and crack up laughing.  We are loving it.

It is amazing how much she changes every day now!  She has learned just in the last week to hand us a package of something if she wants one: crackers, yogurt melts, etc.  She will even try to pick up my boppy and hand it to me if she wants to nurse.  It is just great to see her telling us what she wants, instead of us always having to guess.

The last thing I want to note today is that she really started taking one or two steps on her own consistently.  She would randomly take a step here or there, but this evening she started taking one or two steps in between us.  It is really fun to watch her gain confidence in herself.  Watching a baby grow and learn and change is one of the most amazing things!!!

Friday, February 17, 2012

My little swimmer

Two things to make note of today.  First, Ava has learned to throw her paci in order to get my attention :(  I put her in her crib for nap today because she was fighting being rocked and when I tried to walk away she started to cry.  I said I would be right back and made to walk out the door at which time she pulled her paci out and threw it on the floor.  Smart girl!  She knew I would come and give it back (either that or she was trying to throw it at my head for leaving).

Second, first day to the pool!  Ava LOVES to play in the bath and so I thought she would enjoy the pool.  The water was a little cold so it took her a few minutes to get used to it, but eventually she was laughing and kicking her legs and putting  her face in the water.  She is my little fish :)  Hopefully I will have her comfortable in the water by this summer so I can teach her to swim.  She didn't stay in too long (about 45+ min), because eventually she started to get cold again, and her little friend Sullivan was shivering.  All in all I would say it was a success.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012


Ava proved she recognizes certain objects, I am so proud!!  Balls are Ava's favorite toys.  She is pretty good at throwing the ball back and forth with anyone who will play with her.  Big balls, little balls, balls bigger than she is...she isn't picky.  Today in the bath she brought two balls with her since she was holding them when I picked her up to go into the bath.  I dropped them in the tub so she could play with them along with her dozen other bath toys.  I asked her to "find the ball, bring mommy the ball."  The blue ball was right in front of her so she picked it up and I praised her.  Yay, she knew what the ball is.  Just to make sure she didn't just pick up the first thing she saw, I later hid the blue ball in her cup and asked her again to find the ball for mommy.  She looked around at all her bath toys for a minute then she reached over and grabbed the yellow ball and handed it to me.  Not only does she know what a ball is, she recognizes a ball no matter what it looks like.  I was very proud of my little bath fishy tonight.

Jason later reminded me that she already recognized the word for kiss since if we ask her for a kiss she will kiss our cheek.  But, I was still happy that it was one more new thing she did.  She is also now blowing kisses, although she doesn't consistently do that on demand yet.

Just keeping you up-to-date with the Ava developments :)


Saturday, February 11, 2012

Walking?! Not quite...

So we are getting closer to walking!  Ava took two steps unaided last night.  She was holding a pretzel in each hand and wanted daddy's ps3 controller so she walked toward him.  Unfortunately we haven't been able to entice such a feat again.  It just blows my mind that she isn't running all over the place by now.  She can stand very well by herself and does so often, she bounces up on her toes and back to her flat feet, she will even crouch to pick something up and then stand again (although that she has only done a couple of times).  HOW IS SHE NOT WALKING??!!

I thought for sure she would have been walking in January.  I think to shock me she will wait until after her 1st birthday to really start walking.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Did my child just talk?

I don't know if you have ever seen the movie "A Few Good Men," but there is a scene in that movie where a father is pushing his child in a stroller and the father says to his friend, "she just said "Pa!"  The friend points out that the child was pointing at a mailbox, at which point the father says "as if to say "Pa, a mailbox!"  I have become this parent.  I say to Ava "say ball" and when she very purposely says, "Ba!" I tell her she did a great job saying "ball."  Also, when our cat walks by and I say, "say Cat" and she says "Ca" I tell her she did a great job saying "Cat."  We want so badly for our children to be accomplishing something new everyday. 

Ava is SO CLOSE to walking.  We want her to walk so badly and so we try to encourage her by standing just out of her reach and saying, "come to mama."  I know she will walk when she is ready, and I also know that once she is running all over the place I will wish she would go back to slow crawling so I can keep up.  But, right now we really want her to walk, because we know that she will enjoy walking and it will open up her world to so many different things.  Just in the last few days she has started standing on her own without touching anything and she does it more and more often everyday, but so far we haven't gotten more than one step.

I have to say one of the best things about having a child is listening to their laughter.  I feel like recently Ava has more and more often done this belly laugh when she gets happy about something.  Whether we are rolling a ball back and forth on the floor, playing "peek-a-boo," or if I am pretending that she is chasing me with her push cart as she walks around.  I just LOVE to make her laugh.  She can make me smile until my cheeks hurt.  I know one day all too soon she won't laugh with such abandon as she does now, but for now I will just enjoy it.

I just wanted to write down a few of the things Ava is doing right now, and keep you all up to date.

Monday, January 30, 2012


I think I am officially dependent on medication for adequate sleep.

I should back up.  I have had trouble sleeping for as far back as I can remember; high school, college, and perhaps even before but I don't remember my sleep habits that far back.  It would take me at least an hour, typically longer, to fall asleep at night and I never slept through the night without waking at least once.

When I got pregnant with Ava the insomnia got significantly worse almost right away.  There were many nights I didn't fall asleep until 4am or later, and there were even some nights when I didn't sleep at all.  I would lie awake crying and mad at myself because I was SO tired, but I couldn't fall asleep.  After Ava was born initially the insomnia went away and I was ecstatic.  I was actually get more sleep with a newborn baby than I did while I was pregnant.  Unfortunately it was short lived.  Around the time Ava was 4 months old I started having difficulty sleeping again.  It got to the point that Jason asked that I see if I could get something prescribed.

As soon as I started taking Ambien I was hooked.  Not to the medication, but to sleep.  I get to sleep at night again, and I only have to take half of a pill.  I am not sure whether I should be concerned with taking the Ambien every night.  I have tried not taking it, but after lying awake for an hour or so I cave and take the pill and promptly fall asleep.  I hope that eventually I will be able to sleep alone again, but for now I guess this works.

I titled this post "insomniacs," because over the last week Ava has started to have trouble going back to sleep in the middle of the night.  She has always been a bad sleeper.  Horribly hard to put down at night and has never once slept through the night, and normally wakes up 3+ times a night.  She has always though gone promptly back to sleep after I nurse her.  Over the last week though Ava has had several times where she doesn't go back to sleep.  Last night was particularly bad and she didn't sleep will until 630am and only slept until 9.  I am hoping and praying Ava does not have my sleep problems.  I slept well as a baby so she is not following exactly in my footsteps.

Here is an insomniac hoping I did not pass on my insomnia to my daughter.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Cleaning the house

I am HORRIBLE at keeping the house clean.  I try and keep up with the necessaries: laundry and dishes, but everything else kind of falls to the side.  I can't remember when the last time was I dusted, and Ava and both cats are terrified of the vacuum cleaner, so that tells you something.  It doesn't help either that Jason couldn't care less about how clean the house is.  But today, I got alot done and therefore am feeling mightily proud of myself.

I have to make a rabbit trail here:  Ava is not the greatest of sleepers...ok she is a really bad sleeper.  But, before we left for Christmas vacation she was napping really well: one hour in the morning and two hours in the afternoon.  She napped HORRIBLY the whole time we were gone on vacation, and hasn't improved too much since we got back.  Until today!  Today she took a two hour nap in the afternoon, and I took advantage.

Ok, back to the main point.  I used the two hours she gave me to accomplish much!  I exercised for the first time since before we went on vacation.  I cleaned and vacuumed our bedroom.  I swept the entire house (we have hardwoods in every room except our bedroom), and I picked up all of Ava's toys.  I am feeling pretty good about myself.

Only problem with all the I accomplished...I forgot to make dinner.  Aw, well.  Can't win um all!! :)

Sunday, January 22, 2012

We are starting a blog!!

A friend of mine posted on facebook today that she had started a blog.  She wanted to catalog all of the crazy and wonderful things her children did so that they could all look back on them one day.  I thought this was such a great idea that Jason and I decided to follow in her footsteps (thank you Tori :))

We are starting this blog for two reasons.  The first is definitely to keep a log of our lives and the things Ava is doing (and the antics of our future children as well), the second is so that our family (who all live far away) can keep up with any of our day to day stuff.

For those of you reading this blog who do not already know us...  My name is Sara, and my husband's name is Jason.  He is a math professor at the University of Tennessee at Martin.  For fun he plays video games, reads, plays disc golf and does more math.  I am currently a stay-at-home mom, which in my book is the best job on the planet!!  Prior to the birth of our daughter I was a nurse caring for pregnant women, newly postpartum women and their new babies.  Second best job on the planet.  One day I would like to work as a lactation consultant out of my house, but it will take me awhile to get that off the ground, I think.  For fun I also play video games and read.

Now onto the best part, our daughter, Ava.  Ava is our soon to be 10 month old daughter who thinks she is our boss.  She is the joy of our lives and is absolutely so much fun!  She does this half-crawl with one foot on the ground and one knee on the ground which is super cute.  She is pulling up on everything and wants to walk so bad, but hasn't taken off yet, much to the relief of our two cats.  Most of this blog will be about her I am sure.

Hope you are looking forward to reading the super exciting details of our lives!  My husband says we are boring...we shall see!