Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween!

We lucked out this year...the temperature was in the 50's perfect for all the little trick-or-treaters. We put Ayla and Kody in their costumes early in the evening (uh-huh, I'm one of those pet owners who dresses up her dog...just wait 'til you see the pictures). We went outside and let them roam around the front yard while we talked to some neighbors and waited for Yeh-Yeh and Nai-Nai to come over.

We figured Ayla might like to hand out candy and see all the different costumes, but apparently that wasn't exciting enough for her. She really wanted to go outside after seeing so many kids coming and going so we decided to just take her to a few houses. I'm glad we topped off an already great afternoon and evening. Happy Halloween!
Our little China doll...
Best buds...holding hands. :)
Super Kody...he's such a good sport.
Ready to go trick-or-treating with her tiny pumpkin pail.

Sunday, October 25, 2009


Ayla has been going through some changes in her sleep habits this past week. Since she was just a few months old, we've been plopping her (lovingly, of course) into her crib at bedtime and she babbles her way into dreamland. No problems, whatsoever. All of a sudden, she refuses to do this. She screams and cries in protest...I'm not opposed to letting her cry it out, however, I'm not okay with letting her get so worked up that she throws up. Unfortunately, this happened a couple of nights ago. I felt so terribly bad for her. I hate it when she gets sick. In addition to not wanting to go to bed on her own, she has pushed her bedtime later. For a couple weeks there, she was asleep as early as 6:45 pm! She must have been going through a growth spurt or something. This later bedtime will actually work in our favor once Daylight Savings is over...although that's another week or two away and she may change things up yet again. I'm wondering if this new bedtime battle has anything to do with separation anxiety...I read that around this age, it can get pretty bad and can actually happen at bedtime. Ooh and I almost forgot--she napped for TWO WHOLE HOURS today. I started to worry that something was wrong. She hasn't slept that long for a nap since she was just a couple months old...the sleeping conditions must have been just right today. :)
We've had another nice weekend...Ayla stayed with Grandma and Grandpa on Friday night so we could go on a date! :) We went out to Johnny's Steakhouse at Village Pointe and enjoyed a nice, relaxing dinner. It was so great to be able to really take our time and just sit and talk. I think we need to do it more often.
On Saturday morning, I slept in til 9:00! It was awwwwesome. I was a total bum for a couple of hours and then I headed out to get Miss Ayla at Grandma and Grandpa's. We watched the [horribly disappointing] Husker game. Seriously. It was probably the worst game I've ever watched. Enough said.
And today, we went to Paige and Paxton's first birthday party! They were both digging their cupcakes...frosting everywhere. :) Afterwards, we went down to Aunt Marla's place to say hi and hang out for a bit before having to head home for the night.
Another weekend gone...can you believe October is almost over?

Monday, October 19, 2009

Nebraska City

We've been talking about going to Nebraska City since Ayla was born last year...not that it's some spectacular place, but just somewhere to go, something to do---apple orchards, Arbor Lodge, the Tree Farm, etc. We decided to go yesterday as it was a beautiful October day. We headed out after Ayla's nap and spent a really fun afternoon there as a family. We went to Arbor Day Farm and walked through a short trail through the trees as leaves fell all around us. They had a great "discovery" area for kids...Ayla is still a bit young for most of it, but I think she liked looking around and taking it all in. I'm sure next year she'll be running all over the place.

Starting the day with some Daddy-Ayla time watching Elmo on the laptop...

Pushing buttons and listening to different birds on a learning chart along the trail.

Dean testing out the nature sounds funnel display...goofball.

Looking down from atop the 50 foot high tree house.

A souvenir that she later took a bite out of so we opted not to bring it home.

Leaving a note on the chalkboards...

We taste-tested several different types of apples and were able to choose one of our favorites to take with us...we also were given a free Northern Spruce tree to plant at home. After we wandered through most of the farm, we headed over to Arbor Lodge. We didn't go into the mansion, we just roamed around the grounds surrounding it so Ayla could get out of her stroller for a while and be free. At first, she was a bit apprehensive and wanted to take our hands but eventually, she loved it and walked around with a smile on her little face. It was so fun to see her happy and having a good time. That, in itself, made our trip a successful one.

She insisted on carrying around this apple we took from the farm...she could hardly get her hands around it and kept dropping it on the ground.
That stubborn bruise on her cheek still hasn't gone has faded but now it looks like I didn't wipe her face off well enough.
I love this one...
Taking a break to have a couple bites of blueberry cobbler.
Off she goes...
Before heading home, we grabbed a bag of apples and a jug of apple cider...yum! And one more stop for Daddy and Ayla--picking an apple from a tree.

It was a perfect afternoon...I'm so glad we were able to make it out there. This will be a trip we look forward to each year and hopefully it's something Ayla learns to love as she gets older.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Dear Aunt Marla,

I think your worst fear has come true. Yes, I have inherited Mommy's and Daddy's clumsiness. I'll take those coordination lessons whenever you have the time.

Love, Ayla

I know she's a toddler just getting the hang of walking and she's going to have the typical bumps and bruises, but this poor baby trips over air. And she somehow always lands on her face. The bump in the middle of her forehead just went away...just in time for not just one, but two new battle wounds. She now has a scrape on her nose and a bruise on her cheek. Who gets bruises on their cheeks? Both of these falls brought on the "Silent Cry." You know, the kind where all facial expressions point towards pain...bright red face, mouth wide open, and tears welling up in her big brown eyes...but no sound comes out. That's when you know it's bad. She writhes around in my arms like this for about ten seconds and THEN comes the actual cry. Poor thing has an amazing set of lungs.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Nothin' much to say...

Here I am sitting on the couch and it's Sunday night...again. It has seemed like a really long weekend, but at the same time, it always goes so fast. Does that make any sort of sense? I just wrote paragraphs of random ramblings but decided it was really too boring for anyone to read. I dozed off when I read back through it. So I deleted it. I don't have anything terribly interesting to talk about right's been a good few days, minus the moments where I cry because I can't get Ayla to eat anything. I had a breakdown today after I tried to give her poor mom and Dean had to put up with me. Sometimes I wish I could be a toddler and throw myself on the ground, arch my back, and cry out of frustration. It's too bad I'm nearing 30 and that wouldn't be socially acceptable. I'm trying not to get so frustrated...but I can't help it. Really, I can't. I want my baby to eat. Sigh.

Ayla's loving all of her new toys...they keep her pretty busy, which allows me to get a few things done. Bonus!

Yes, she is wearing Elmo slippers with her cute dress.
Dancing at her musical activity table from Uncle Ping and Surina...I'd recommend this toy...she loves it.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Just because...

I've gone blog-happy the past couple of days...I just had to post these two pictures though. She looks like a hot pink E.T. :)

12-month check-up...

Ayla had her 12-month appointment today. On the way to the doctor's office, I started to feel so bad for her. I kept glancing at her in the rearview mirror while she was happily munching away on her Cheerios. Poor thing didn't know what she had coming. We were early so I brought her into Fatbrain Toys to kill some time. We walked out empty-handed, but it's a neat store...we'll have to stop back in when we have more time to look around.

She measured in at 20 lbs 9 oz (40th percentile) and is 29 1/4 inches (53rd percentile). Her head, as you all know, is huge. She's at the 98th percentile in that department.

We waited for quite a while in the room...luckily, there was a bin full of toys for her to play with. When Dr.Davey came in, she actually smiled at him. Last time, she was kind of afraid. He is so great with her! She did fine until he had to press on her first, she started to laugh and then she changed her mind and got upset. He said that she looks great all around though.

Then the dreaded part...shots. The nurse came back in and thankfully, Dean was with us this time, so he helped hold her down. I just held her hands and talked to her, but it was horrible. She was already crying when we put her on the exam table and each time she was poked, her eyes about popped out of her head. Poor little thing. I can't help but get tears in my eyes when she's crying like that. It took forever for her to calm back down afterwards. She was on the verge of one of her screaming-til-she-barfs episodes. This was probably the worst appointment so far. She cried when she got shots at her other appointments, but she was fine after just a minute. Definitely not the case this time. Halfway home, it was as if she was thinking about what had happened and she started crying again.

We survived though...and we have a healthy baby, so all is well. :)

Monday, October 5, 2009

Ayla's hat...

I've gotten several compliments on Ayla's new hat that she wore to the pumpkin was a birthday gift from Aunt Jamie...a friend of hers made it. It came with three different flowers that can be clipped on the hat interchangeably. So cute. I may have to get another one.

If you're interested, check out her blog:
She's just getting started, so stay tuned for more info and pictures.

Pooley's Pumpkin Patch

Yesterday, we went to Pooley's Pumpkin Patch...Nai-Nai and Aunt Marla joined us as well. We went there for the first time last year and really liked it. Ayla was just a couple weeks old then and was asleep in the Baby Bjorn the whole time. It's a small family-owned place out in Bennington without the crazy crowds, lines, and prices of the bigger pumpkin patches in town. We're going to make it a tradition to go every year.

Ayla saw all kinds of things...chickens, pigs, goats, horses, cows...and of course, tons of pumpkins (or in her words--balls). While we were out in the pumpkin patch, she refused to be held...she wanted to check it all out for herself. She was NOT a happy girl once we got back on the hayrack. We even took a ride on the biggest tire swing I've ever seen. Fun stuff!
Chickens and roosters
Feeding them with Daddy
Looking at the baby chicky
Swinging with Mommy
Pumpkin Ayla
Taking a walk with Nai Nai and Mommy
Checking out the piggies
Petting a goat
On the hayrack with Aunt Marla
"I want these!"
Just about the entire time we were there, she had a hold of the little pumpkin she picked out