Sunday, December 25, 2016

Merry Christmas, Everyone!

Cards of Christmas' Past:  20072008200920102011201220132014, 2015

Monday, November 28, 2016

Ten! Is The Magic Number.

I changed my mind, again.  I think ten-months is my favorite age.  Pippa's personality is really shinning through and I LOVE it!  Of course we're already two-thirds through her eleventh-month of life and I can't remember anything!  Just the recent stuff that she does.  Which technically should be written about next month.  I really need to make some notes that I can reference.  I've written some things in my personal journal but am too lazy to read them for the details.  So, I'll just narrate through the pictures of the month.

Wyatt has been "commuting" to Oregon weekly since the middle of August.  He's been working down there but the family hasn't moved since we've had some better prospects up here in Seattle we're chasing.  Lucky for us, Wyatt can stay rent-free in his parent's basement.  Ha!  There has been a running joke in our marriage that we will never live in our parent's basement.  And here Wyatt is... it's actually more sad than funny.  Not because of Wyatt's parent's, just the state our lives are currently in.  Sorry Wyatt.  

So we went down to Oregon for a week to hang out with our favorite husband and dad.  It was a fun trip.  Good times with Grandy and Goombaw and other family.   Of course we river'd it up while we were there.  A must anytime we visit.  Ro was feeling sensitive to some noise (I don't remember what) and asked Goombaw for some ear muffs.  And of course she had to (according to Ro) wear ear muffs too.  They were quite the pair.

Grandy was in the midst of remodeling their kitchen during our visit.  Most of the "new" kitchen was intact (the "old" kitchen still needed to be gutted to make the "new" dining room).  Pippa was the lucky grandbaby that got to take the first bath in their new kitchen sink!  Never mind that she was no longer an problem!  That sink is roomy!  Enough so that even Ro took a bath in it a few nights.  It sure was handy for me.  Perfect height so I don't have to kneel and reach.  And Pippa (and Ro) loved taking a bath in it!  

The next four pictures are a series of the "traveling ice cream cone."  Ro enjoying it on the front porch...while riding on the motorcycle down to the river...and on the beach of the river.  I am loving the ear muffs!  Funny boy. 

Mom's are fun too!  Dad isn't the only one that provides rides on the mini motorcycle.  The training wheels actually made it harder to ride.  Specifically turning.  

Ro giving his best at building a fire truck.  Wyatt accompanied him to Home Depot and said that Ro was pretty shy the whole time.  No surprise there.  Often when we go to a park and he sees kids on the playground he will say, "I don't want to play because there are kids."  He is his father's son.  

Wyatt's job is close to the trendy part of North Portland (he is in the non-trendy part).  So we had to hop on over to Pip's Original Donuts.  In honor of our very own Pip.  As a donut connoisseur (self-labeled but still very worthy of the title), I would say they were only okay.  They are the cute little donuts made from the commercial grade automatic donut maker (retail price of roughly $1500 - I know, because I researched on how I could start my own little donut business several years ago).  However, the peeps in Seattle at Pikes Place Market, Daily Dozen Donuts, do it much better!  Daily Dozen keeps it simple, and as such, keeps them tasty.  Pip's is too gourmet.  And you pay for it too.  Really, the whole experience turned me off.  In true North Portland fashion, they took something that needs no change and turned it into an overpriced, overdone, pretentious treat.  I'm making it sound worse than it was.  (Though the smuggery hit you like a brick wall when you entered the shop.)  But seriously, donuts really have come into vogue the past couple years (exit the cupcake) and it really grinds on me when they deviate from the traditional donut.  Especially in Portland.  Thanks to Voodoo (the Disneyland of donuts - novel but not good), everyone wants their try at a unique donut.  Here's looking at you Blue Star (overpriced unique mediocrity).  Oh, Pip's Original... established in 2015, you need more experience.  

Wow...that was an unexpected rant.  Anyway, back to Pippa:

In spite of new sleeping arrangements, Pippa was a trooper.  She often woke in the middle of the night, as to be expected in an unfamiliar bed.  I was relieved when we returned home that she fell right back into her sleep-through-the-night routine.  Happy mama!  

We decided to visit the End of the Trail museum while in town.  I'd never been and we were looking to get out.  It was worth the free admission, courtesy of the local library.  

Here Ro is "making" a candle.  He is very clearly enthralled by the experience.  We saved the candle he Goombaw made to use for Pippa's first birthday.  

More utilizing the new kitchen.  The perfect arena for marble ramps!  It was very, very, very loud.  I'm so glad we don't have a giant jar of marbles at our house.  Which, looking at the picture, where are Ro's ear muffs?!!!  It was soooooo loud!

When we arrived home we found this little surprise in our window!  Usually the stray growths disgust me (I know, I'm weird).  But I found this little flower to be so delightful.  It'd close at night and open in the morning with the sun.  And the yellow/orange center had such a unique color that it almost looked like it had a flashlight glowing from inside while it was closed for the night.  

Ro and Pippa shenanigans (90-percent Ro/10-percent Pippa).  My dream, before Pippa was born, was that my kids would be best buds.  Ha!  Ha ha ha ha HA!  Pippa might be willing but Ro is not.  I have no idea what "normal" is in this department but there is a lot of grabbing, yelling, hitting, and pushing.  Lots and lots of resistance to sharing.  Unless baby sister has something he wants...and then he is all for it.  This is the case most of the day.  And then, something magical happens at dinner time, Ro is nice to Pippa!  Mostly.  He likes to play with her and make her laugh.  And sometimes he shares.  And it makes the rest of the day all right.  

Okay, Ro is not as big of a monster as I made him out to be above.  He really is a good boy and a good big brother.  But I still wouldn't say that Pippa is his best friend.  Wyatt still wins that spot.  

Which, Wyatt is slowly winning with Pippa too!  It doesn't matter how many times I whisper the awful things Dad does into her ear (he eats pork rinds!), she still wants to be with him!  Sometimes she grabs onto his shirt when I try to take her away from him.  What the heck?!  She was supposed to love me most!  I was supposed to be her favorite!  Wyatt is encroaching on my territory and I do not like it.  It will kill me if Wyatt gets both.  

Mom's are fun too!  Proof that I can be fun...taking the kids to Toddler Time at the aquarium. 

Sometimes a crying picture is just as cute as a smiling one.  Sorry Pippa.  No wonder you're starting to like Dad more than me.  

Proof they get along!  Again, this is post-dinner, that magical time when they are friends.  

Pippa is still an excellent eater.  I still LOVE it!  It never gets old sitting her down to eat and she actually eats.  Everything.  Rarely does she snub her nose at something she doesn't want to eat.  

This photo is fake, as in I'm the one that took the picture so I am fake sleeping.  But Ro is not.  I love that he likes to cuddle me.  He's pretty much done napping these days.  Which has been a traumatic experience for me.  I actually have to stay awake all day long!  But there are times when he needs a nap and I get to nap too.  I love these rare occurrences.  

I took this picture on my run one morning.  The sun was shining from behind me onto the dark clouds ahead.  Notice the rainbow?  The objects in the picture itself are nothing special.  I was just impressed with how vibrant the colors on everything were.  

Comparison of Ro and Pippa's hair.  Ro's hair is true blonde, though dark in the winter months.  We've been letting it grow long and I actually really like it.  Pippa's hair has a red tint to it.  Strawberry blonde if you will.  It's more obvious in some lights than others.  I tried to capture it below but I think it's still hard to see.  It sure is pretty in person!  

We chose the stormiest weekend to visit the pumpkin patch.  Though it didn't damper our spirits.  It just discouraged us from going to the actual patch to pick our pumpkin.  We were totally satisfied with the four we picked from the pumpkin pile.  They had fun little activities for the kids...Ro.  Which he loved!  Actually, Pippa equally loved the corn pit.  They were practically swimming in the corn kernels.  

Mom's are fun too!  We make forts while Wyatt is at work.  And this is where Pippa started waving goodbye.  Too bad I can't upload the darling video to prove her new trick.  

Ro keeping himself busy while I'm busy making dinner.  

Singing Happy Birthday to us because we like to sing Happy Birthday these days.  And we had a why not?

Ro trying out his new bike.  The bike I put together...because mom's are fun!  The bearings on his old bicycle quit.  Needless to say Ro loves his new bike. 

The neighbor's house caught on fire.  We don't know the details of it but we do know that no one was hurt.  It was our "front" neighbors.  They're backyard backs to our private driveway.  It was quite the event.  Not only was there a fire but someone disturbed the yellow jacket hive in our there was a lot of terrified screaming from kids.  Poor Ro had a bee crawl in his helmet while he was wearing it.  He says it stung him but I'm not sure if it did or not.  We'll say it did.

There's the firemen that waved goodbye as they drove away.  Ro was pretty excited about that!  

All was well at the end of the day.  Here the kids are laughing because I was telling them how "little fires" turn into "big fires."  And then I'd make an explosion sound and the kids would barrel laugh.  It was very, very cute!  Hopefully I got my point across and they know not to play with fire. 

Pippa pulls herself up!  She was so excited about her new trick that she didn't nap for a week.  Literally.  She just kept practicing and practicing.  And then it caught up to her and she started napping again.  And I was happy.  

Ma' G had a layover in Seattle so we decided to play tourists in our own city.  Pikes Place Market for little donuts.  Dick's Burgers.  And Kerry Park overlooking the city.  It was a fun little adventure.  

Ro showing Pippa how to play in the closet.  Too bad I can't post the corresponding video because it'd show the typical big brother Ro is.  Swatting Pippa's feet and hands away so they don't get run over by the door.  At least he didn't run her over.  

More Happy Birthday singing.  Look at the emotion in that face!  October is filled with birthdays in my family.  

Proof Wyatt exists!  And that he has fun too.  Here he is on the ferry returning from a morning of motorcycle riding on the peninsula.  Love that view!  

Ro and I decided to get a closer look at the planes and camped near the runways.  Here is our favorite plane taking off: Lufthansa, Boeing 747.  So cool!  

Ro picked his Halloween costume.  I searched costumes on Pinterest and he picked the one he liked the best.  Can you guess what he decided to be?  Stay tuned next month!  

Pippa taking in the view.  Mt. Rainier in the background. 

Our neighbor friend, Selam, also had an October birthday.  We were supposed to make her birthday cake together but had some miscommunication.  So we made the cake and Selam decorated it to look like a cat.  Reminds me of the time my mom let me decorate my clown cake.  I thought it looked so good...and then I look at pictures...  We went to McDonald's PlayPlace to celebrate, Ro's first experience.  And he LOVED it!  

Momma G has a second layover!  Two in one week!  This time we met her at her hotel so we could jump on the bed!  A tradition Ro and Pippa both love.  

Mom's are fun!  More forts!

Grape the Ape, by Roosevelt Wilson.  I found this picture on my camera roll and thought it was pretty good.  Good enough to keep.  Grape is Ro's favorite stuffed animal.  

Carving the little pumpkin with Dad.  A tradition I think Ro will want to continue.  

Sunday afternoon nap.  These treasures are far and few between.  I miss them so badly!!!  I guess when I do get to take a Sunday afternoon nap regularly again, I'll miss having my kids little.  The moral of the story: Enjoy the moment.  Because it is fleeting.  

And Pippa turns eleven-months tomorrow.  I think next month I'm just going to be brief.  We'll see...