Monday, December 29, 2008

Christmas updates :-)

I fell asleep for a little bit on the couch earlier tonight due to being TOTALLY exhausted, and wouldn't you know that once I got back to bed, I was wide awake staring at the ceiling. So here I am, blogging away :-) Figured I might as well update since it's been awhile.

I'll start off with my last post... as I said in that, our friends' daughter J had to go back to the hospital last week. We ended up visiting her on Monday night, and she was ZONKED from Morphine...poor thing. We took her a little dog with a santa hat on that sings "Santa Baby," a coloring book, and a huge helium balloon shaped like a reindeer. She was in and out of sleep the whole time we were there. The next night she was spiking fevers and they found out she had an infection in her spinal fluid, so she had a PICC line inserted (an IV they put in if you're going to need one for more than just a few days), so she's been on antibiotics for that. The GREAT news was that she got to come home Christmas night. She just has to continue IV antibiotics at home for awhile, but she's slowly getting back to her old self.

I was so impressed with Children's Hospital though... they were awesome to little J. They brought paints and all sorts of activities for her into her hospital room, which she LOVED... and on Christmas night, while J and her mom and dad were all sleeping, "Santa" snuck in and left a little Christmas tree and a huge bag of toys for J. It brought our friends to tears the next morning when they saw everything, especially since they hadn't gotten alot of Christmas shopping done due to everything going on. She got barbie dolls, My Little Pony, coloring books, a magna doodle and all kinds of great toys. It really cheered J up because she was worried Santa wouldn't visit her!

J came home in the early afternoon Christmas Day. Santa and Mrs. Claus made a special visit to little J at her house on the 26th, once she was feeling a little better, so they celebrated Christmas that day. The good thing is that their other two kids are 2 and 1, so they really had no idea that they were celebrating Christmas a day late.

My sister-in-law, Alyson and I went over to see J and her family lastnight... she is doing great! All smiles and running around as if nothing ever happened. What a blessing! We ate dinner with them and played with the kids and their new toys for awhile.

So that's the story with J.

Now, backtracking a bit to Christmas Eve. We had a big get-together at my Grandma's like we do every year on Christmas Eve. We had a lot of laughs, a lot of food, and a lot of my uncle's homemade wine. (Which, of course, I had to sample every kind he brought.) Good times!! Russ didn't stay very long though... his brother and his wife flew in from Alaska, and he went and picked them up at the airport while I stayed with my family. So I didn't get to see my in-laws until Christmas Day.

Ahh, Christmas Day. Now THAT was interesting. It was pretty much go-go-go from the start. We went to mass at 9am, then came home for a few hours...I made us all breakfast then we put Alyson down for her nap. While she was upstairs, we opened up our presents to eachother. Russ got me a necklace that has a mother and child intertwined (kinda in a heart shape), with Alyson's birthstone in the middle. He also got me a dell PINK! My other laptop just died one day, so I had been using his... he's happy to have it back now! As for my presents to Russ, I got him clothes, some Dallas Cowboys stuff, a wallet, and a grab bag full of odds-and-ends things... nothing all that exciting. He's so hard to buy for, because he always seems to go out right before Christmas and buy whatever he needs...silly boy.

So after we opened presents, we THOUGHT it'd be awhile before Aly got up, but she didn't sleep long at all. We headed over Russ's mom's house to be with everyone. Russ's OTHER brother (the one who lives close to us) was there with his wife and kids, and we weren't sure how that was going to go. It went pretty well though. His brother was just his usual a-holish self, for lack of better words. As Russ says when it comes to him, "If you have low expectations where he's concerned, you won't be disappointed." Which he wasn't expecting much more from his brother. His brother got him a Santa Claus that stands on this little pedestal... you press a button and Santa goes, "Ho ho ho... I've heard you've been extra good this year, so Santa had an extra special present for you" then he turns around on the pedestal and pulls his pants down. Yeah... that was Russ's present from his brother. I call it the "screw you" present. Russ's mother was TICKED about that. Oh, and then, Russ's mom's husband's family has a tradition where you say a prayer for whoever got you the gift you're about to open... and when Russ's brother opened our gift, he just said a really crappy prayer, like, "Thank you for the love that is Russell, the generosity that is Russell" and was just totally smartassed about it. I SO wanted to say something but I kept my mouth shut. If they had been getting along it wouldn't have been so bad, but since they're NOT really close, it was totally a slap in the face to Russ. Guess it's just one of those "you had to be there" situations.

Anyway, the rest of the day went well though... we ate dinner , talked with everyone for awhile, then came back to our house to meet up with MY parents. They TOTALLY spoiled us with presents. Even the dogs got two huge bags of presents. They were loving it. Alyson opened up all her presents (from us AND my parents) while my parents were here. She was more into the Christmas thing than I thought she'd be, which surprised me. She tried opening her presents once we coaxed her a little, but mostly it was me who was the present-opener. Aly got a babydoll, a baby stroller, a grocery cart, Dora bath toys, clothes, the Fisher Price Learn About Town, Fisher Price musical friends table, blocks, leapfrog fridge dj,pots and pans set, etc etc etc... she has enough toys to open up a store now.

The day after Christmas, I hung out with my sister-in-law K (the one from Alaska) while Russ and BOTH (yes, BOTH) his brothers went out to lunch together. From what Russ tells me, the lunch went pretty well. Later, Russ and I went to Cabela's with both brothers and their wives... a lovely family (Russ's brothers are both big into hunting, and Russ got this grand idea that he wanted to buy a gun. He ended up getting some huge gun (AK 17, I think???) like they use in the military. What for, I dunno. So he dropped some mad amount of money on this gun, and was all excited.

After all that excitement (yeah right), we all ate at Olive Garden. It wasn't as tension-filled as I thought it would be... it was good for all of us to get out together for a change. That was a first, actually. Russ and his in-town brother probably talked more over the past 3 days than they have in the past 3 years.

Anyway, onto yesterday... the 3 brothers had more male bonding time, and went out to their hunting land to practice shooting. They were all pumped to play with Russ's new "toy." So they did that for awhile while my sister-in-law K and I hung out, then we all met up for dinner. Pretty noneventful. (I'm trying to be short and sweet where the updates are

So all in all, it's been great that all 3 brothers have gotten to spend time together. Hopefully everyone can act civil and (gasp!) even become closer. We'll see. As Russ says, "If you go into it with low expectations, you won't be disappointed." I'm not holding my breath for some miracle to happen, but all this is a start.

So there are my holiday updates. Russ's brother in in town until Thursday morning, and I think they will be staying with us for a few days (they've been staying with his mom so far), so I'll try to update when I can. It's just been busy busy busy since Christmas Eve. If for some reason I don't get to update before New Year's Eve, I hope everyone has a WONDERFUL New Year! Be safe, whatever you end up doing for New Year's Eve!!

Next post will have pictures, I promise :-) Just have to get them into a slideshow since there are so many.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

More sad news :-(

Another prayer request... :-( I found all this out about 7:30pm tonight.

Our friends' daughter J had to go back to the hospital tonight... she's started to have severe headaches and so her parents took her to Childrens Hospital in Pittsburgh. The doctor did some tests on her and discovered she has a spinal fluid leak which is causing the headaches. I guess this happens in about 10% of post-op patients who had the same surgery she did.

Little J had to go back into surgery tonight to drain the fluid... that was around 9pm. Russ and our friend Brandon went up there to be with our friends... I'd have loved to go up and see her, but Aly was due to go to bed at 8pm :-( So Russ is still there now... he just called about an hour ago and said that the surgery went well... she just has tubes and drains galore coming out of her. And what ELSE is sad is that she'll more than likely be in the hospital for a week, the doctor said. Which means she'll be celebrating Christmas in a hospital bed :-(

What I don't understand is that she was doing SO WELL yesterday. J's little brother turned 1 on the 16th, and our friends had a little birthday party at their house yesterday for him. I gave J a hug and asked her how she was feeling and she smiled and said "good." I asked if she was having any pain and she shook her head no. She was loving playing with all the kids, and was playing dress-up in all her princess dresses with the other girls. It's crazy how things can do a total 180 in such a short period of time.

If you could please say a prayer for her speedy recovery I'd really appreciate it! Also for my dad too... he's been having sciatic nerve and back problems, so the doctor sent him for an X-ray and found out that he has a lot of degeneration (break-down of bone)/arthritis in his joints and back. He's been walking around with a little limp due to all the pain. He goes tomorrow for an MRI, and I'm just hoping he won't be needing back surgery. His side of the family all seems to have these problems... his brothers and sisters and my grandparents. He's stubborn though and said he's not having surgery unless he ABSOLUTELY has to. So we'll see. For now, I'll be hoping and praying for GOOD THINGS and lots of healing....

We'll probably be going to Pittsburgh tomorrow to see Little J, so I'll update when I can. Have a good night :-)

Thursday, December 18, 2008

The past few days... (Ok, so I couldn't think of a better title)

Just a quick update on the past few days...nothing very exciting to talk about, but that's just my life!

Yesterday Russ and I went over our friends' house (the ones whose little daughter J had surgery) and took them dinner. We were SUPPOSED to get alot of snow the night before, and so I wasn't sure I'd make it to the grocery store to buy food to cook, so I ended up ordering food to-go from a local Italian restaurant. And of course, we got NO snow. Oh well... I didn't have to cook, so that was nice :-)

J is doing better, thank God! I took a gift over for her... I got her a cute little puppy that sings "Jesus Loves Me" when you squeeze its paw, and a set of pj's with minnie mouse on them. (She loves Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.) She was laying around alot, but did come out in the dining room to have dinner with us. She's still in a decent amount of pain, but is taking alternating doses of Tylenol and Ibuprofen. Evidentally the narcotics she'd been prescribed were doing more harm than good, so she didn't want to take them anymore. Her incision is healing pretty well too.. the doc ended up having to shave a 1" strip down the middle of her head to her neck to make the incision, but when her hair is down you can hardly tell. She's a trooper I tell ya. It won't be long til she's back to her energetic little self.

It was nice to spend time with our friends, just hanging out and relaxing. We even split a bottle of wine too, with dinner... the first time I'd drank any alcohol in awhile! I had a few glasses, but it just tasted so GOOD! It was an amish wine called "Roadhouse Red" from Breitenbach Winery in Ohio. Click *here* to check out their website. The wines are FANTASTIC... especially their Frost Fire and First Crush....and strawberry...and peach....and.... LOL. Ok, it's ALL good. I highly recommend it. I always visit there when my cousin and I go out to Sugarcreek to do some shopping. We love going out there to visit all the little country craft stores since we're all into that.

But anyway... I got off track there.

Now to today... I went to a Christmas program at the school a few of my nieces go to. It was so cute. I think the kids all ranged in age from 3-5, and it was ADORABLE. Some kids would forget their lines and look at the teacher in front and say, "What NOW?" and one little girl paused in between lines, so the audience started clapping, thinking she was finished. She goes, "I'm not done," then finished what she was saying. LOL It was too cute. One of my nieces has some lungs on her... you could hear her and one other girl plain as day.

Alyson LOVED the program. I was hoping she wouldn't be fussy, so I came prepared with her sippy cup and lots of crackers, which of course she finished it all. My mother-in-law and her husband took turns holding Alyson, and Aly would stand up on their laps. We were cracking up because whenever the audience clapped, Aly would get a huge grin on her face and start clapping her hands too. I can't wait until she's in school programs... she'll probably be hilarious. She'll be the little girl up on stage looking at the audience and saying, "I'm not DONE." LOL

So after the program we drove around for a little bit looking at Christmas lights. One neighborhood had houses COVERED in lights... it was like each house was competing with the next. One had music playing and everything. It made me think... what happens if you live in a neighborhood like that and you want to decorate but not THAT MUCH? I'd feel obligated to have to make my house look like the Griswold Family Christmas as well, wouldn't you?! That would suck if you only want to put a few things up... you'd be all out of place. But anyway... I wonder about stupid things like that. Oh... and another thing we saw was a house where the people decorated their car in the driveway!!! That's a first for me. Now I have truly seen it all. The guy (I'm assuming it's a guy that thought of this) had those string lights (the ones in the plastic tube, like you can wrap around tree trunks and stuff) strung on the bottom of his car and around all 4 tires. It was uh, cooooool. Yeah. The most annoying things I saw though (and this is, and always HAS been,my pet peeve every holiday season) are the people who string a bunch of lights together, and one random string blinks while the others stay on. Please don't do this. Like if you decorate your bushes and one string in the middle of the bush is blinking and the rest aren't. The people RIGHT next to us have that problem ALL OVER THEIR YARD, and I get to see it EVERYDAY. And they do it EVERY YEAR. lol

So there's the past few oh-so-exciting days in a nutshell. Tomorrow I need to go to Walmart...I need both groceries AND a few more toys. I don't feel like running to fifty different places. It's bad enough it's supposed to be raining all day tomorrow and I'll have to drag Alyson out in it.

More (hopefully exciting) updates soon. Possibly dealing with that HOUSE!! (But I'm not getting my hopes up just yet.)

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

But I want it, I want it, I want it!!!! haha

Some of you who have been reading my blog for awhile might remember me talking about a house we wanted to buy during the summer time... the house is AWESOME, it's 4 bedroom 2.5 bath and is 2800 square feet, on over an acre of land, and is in a great neighborhood. Not to mention it's only 2 years old. If we got it, we would be living about 2 minutes away from the land Russ bought a few months ago. (He bought 10 acres of land for his business... he plans on putting a big building up in the spring and moving his office, equipment and everything out there.)

So we've talked with our realtor on and off about this house. We DID put an offer on it back in June, but the owner didn't take it. His way of thinking was basically, "I want this amount for the house and I'm not taking a penny less." So that was a big let-down. Russ just told me to be patient, because it's not like we HAVE to move, and we're not in any hurry.

So a few months ago, the guy dropped the price by $20,000, but is still not budging on the amount he wants for the house. The amount he lowered it to is the EXACT amount he wants, and no less. So we're back to THAT situation...the waiting game.

Fast forward to last night. Russ came home from a meeting with his banker, and had a big grin on his face. He said, "I think I'm gonna call J (our realtor) about that house... interest rates are down and my banker said I'll have no problem being financed for any amount." So I got ALL EXCITED again. Russ was planning on putting a higher offer than our previous one, but was only willing to go about $15,000 higher at the MOST. So he talked to our realtor, and J said that the owner had just been given an offer for only $9,000 LESS than his asking price, and he rejected THAT!! So evidentally this guy is in no hurry to sell his house. Either that, or his asking price is making him take a big loss already. So who knows. So I got all excited for nothing.... again. Russ and I just both REALLY want this house, but the guy is asking way too much for it, and it truly isn't considered "finished." The people were only in the house for a year and the guy got transferred for his job, so they had to hurry up and pack everything up to move. So there's NO deck on the back, and the LONG driveay is still gravel, which isn't allowed in the city limits. I just don't understand how they couldn't put a deck on the back of the house!! The french doors in the kitchen just have a piece of wood over them so they can't open, because it's a 2-story drop down to the grass. (And these people had little kids too!!)

Russ said that the driveway will be about $15,000 to do, and the deck (the one WE want) will be about $10,000. So with all those upgrades which the house needs, the owners asking price just isn't reasonable. So all we can do is wait some more. Our realtor said, "Well, the next people you'll probably be dealing with is the bank." (Meaning the owner will probably let the house get repo'd before he takes a loss on it... so evidentally J knows a little more than he's telling us.)

I just keep praying that we eventually get our dream house :-) At least we're not FORCED to move and we're content where we're at right now. I just know that once we have another baby, this house is gonna get real small real quick!

Well, I'm off to give Aly her bath and put her down for a nap. Have a great day :-)

Friday, December 12, 2008

Update and Walmarting

Just a little update on my previous post about our friends' daughter J. The surgery went well, though her first night post-op was rough. She was in a ton of pain and had to lay flat for 24 hours. (Which I'm sure is hard for a 3 year-old!) Yesterday was alot better for her, and today she sat up a few times and was looking out the window at the snow... and she's also off IV pain meds and onto pills only. So things are getting better day by day. Thanks so much for your prayers!!

Today my mom and I took Alyson out to run some errands. I picked up Aly's pictures from Sears (which have been in for a week but I never seemed to be able to make it to the mall...), then we went to Walmart for the last of my Christmas shopping. (My first visit to walmart during this christmas season... I try to avoid the madness of Walmart at all costs during the holidays!!) I just basically needed bags and bows and wrapping paper, but of course I ended up buying lots of things not on my list...because really, it's WALMART. I've found that I can not stick to a list when I go to walmart. I always end up buying fifty million other things.

But anyway... after walmart I brought my mom back to my house and she helped me clean up my spare bedroom. We took a lot of things from the spare bedroom, along with Aly's outgrown clothes and toys, and put them in the crawl space in Alyson's bedroom. I've been wanting to do this FOREVER, but her "big girl bed" is blocking the door to the crawl space, and I can't move it by myself to get back in there. So we did that tonight, and now Aly's room is nice and neat now without her jumperoo (which she hasn't used in 8 or 9 months)and other outgrown stuff sitting out. She's all ready to pack her new Christmas toys in her room! Oh, and when I was in the crawl space, I discovered all kinds of wedding gifts I had completely forgotten about. I found a whole pots and pans set, vases, photo albums, a waffle iron, a coffee grinder, a bar glass set, a casserole dish set, candle holders, and all kinds of other fun stuff. It was like Christmas came early, only with already-received wedding gifts. Or something like that. lol

So that's about it for now. Just wanted to update real quick, mostly about little J. She's supposed to be home either late Monday or Tuesday, so I told our friends that we'd come visit her as soon as she's up for visitors. I'm going to take dinner over there, and I bought J a few little goodies today... a comfy pair of pj's she can relax and recover in, along with a cute little stuffed bear that sings "Jesus Loves Me"... it's too cute. I can't wait to see her and give her a big hug. I'm just so glad everything went well for her and that she seems to be recovering well.

Nighty night!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Prayers needed!

To anyone who is reading this, I have a favor to ask... a prayer request.

Good friends of ours have a 3 year-old daughter, J, who was just recently diagnosed with infantile scoliosis. (Abnormal curvature of the spine.) Her spine had a 40 degree curvature to it, so she's had to wear a brace 23 hours out of the day for the past few months. As a result, the curvature luckily has decreased to 30 degrees.

J had an MRI to see what exactly was causing the scoliosis, and the results weren't great. She has a malformed cerebellum (that's the lower part of the brain) which is protruding through the hole in her skull that leads into the spinal canal. She also has a large pocket of fluid in her spinal canal around her spinal cord. As she is growing, that space is getting smaller and smaller causing the scoliosis.

Needless to say, our friends then had to make an appointment with a pediatric neurosurgeon to discuss their options. They were told little J needs to have brain surgery.

The surgery is taking place tomorrow morning (Wednesday) at 11am. I know you don't know who this little girl is, but please say a prayer for her for a successful surgery and a speedy recovery. Her family and friends (including us!!) have all been on pins and needles wondering how she will do with the surgery. Supposedly most kids who have this type of surgery done are able to go back to school within 1 week, so hopefully she is back to her sweet energetic self soon!

Thanks in advance for the prayers.

Monday, December 8, 2008

"Oh Christmas Tree, Oh Christmas look much better upright!"

Well, I hope everyone had a great weekend :-) Mine was pretty busy! Friday I went up my Grandma's house for a birthday party. My cousin and his kids were in from MD and were staying at my grandma's... most of the family hasn't seen them in years, so my uncle had a birthday party for both the kids (his grandkids) while they were in town. It was nice to see everyone! Alyson played strange with everyone for awhile, but started warming up to everyone a little later in the evening! She still would only come to either me or my mom. She DID go to my aunt though... she probably thought my aunt was my mom, since they're twins!

Saturday, I took Alyson up to my mother-in-laws to see all my neices and my nephew! All Russ's brother's kids had spent the night over there Friday night, and were staying most of the day Saturday too. Russ originally told me he didn't think it was safe for me to drive up there due to the snow coming (they live in an area where the county won't really treat the roads with salt very much.) I felt bad, because I had gotten all ready to go, and so I told Russ, "Well YOU call your mom and give her the bad news, because I'm sure she and the kids are looking forward to us coming." So he called her and when I got on the phone with her, I could hear the kids say, "Aunt Betsy's not coming????" So I felt bad and told Russ I'd go, but that I'd just keep an eye out on the weather. I ended up staying over there for a few hours, and by the time I got ready to leave, EVERYTHING was covered with snow. It took me twice as long to get home, but I made it. It was worth it though, to see the kids. They all loved seeing Alyson, and were playing with her all afternoon. They all wanted to take turns holding her... it was too cute! They had made cookies right before we showed up, and lemme tell ya, Alyson LOVED those cookies. :-)

Now onto Sunday... Russ, the lucky boy that he is, got to go to the Steelers/Cowboys game at Heinz Field. While I was envious, I wasn't jealous of the fact that he'd be freezing his boys off while I was sitting on my couch in our warm house!!! He bundled himself up with a gazillion layers of clothing and said he was sweating by the time he got ready to leave the house... but by the time he got home he was happy he'd put that many layers on...he said his feet were freezing!

Unfortunately for him, but FORTUNATELY for me, the Cowboys lost. (Yes, I married a Cowboys fan, despite the fact that my WHOLE family, myself included, is a bunch of Steelers fans!!) The guy he went with is a Cowboys fan too, so they were both bummed about the game. I enjoyed it though!!

So while her daddy was gone yesterday, Alyson decided to get into EVERYTHING. She was climbing on chairs, climbing on tables...and.... knocking down the Christmas tree. Yes, knocking down the Christmas tree. I was in the kitchen and heard the ornaments clinking around, but figured she was just trying to squeeze between the couch and tree in order to reach the end table (she likes to grab whatever she can off the top of it.) So I peeked in the living room to see what was going on, and it was like slow motion... the tree came toppling down and she just barely got out of the way. It scared the crap out of her, and I just stood there with my mouth open. You always think, "Noo.... that won't happen to ME!" and low and behold, the tree comes down. I didn't want to yell at Alyson, because I mean, would she really know what was going on?! She was screaming and crying I just picked her up and put her in her highchair to get her away from everything. I tried tipping the tree back upright (wishing Russ was home to help me!!) but while I was underneath it, I didn't realize one of the legs on the tree stand had folded back underneath the stand, so the tree fell right back over again, this time on top of ME! Well, Alyson saw it falling and screamed even more, poor girl. Finally I realized what the problem was and unfolded the legs of the stand so the tree would actually STAY UP. Fortunately, not many ornaments broke...just two, and most of them actually stayed on the tree.

So that was yesterday's action. Aside from that, I just finished up my outside decorating (in less than 20 degree weather with minimal feeling to my fingers!!), and then *tried* to relax. I just kept an eye on Alyson....AND the tree :-)

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Feeling better now :-)

Thank goodness I'm feeling better today!! I couldn't keep ANYTHING down yesterday. Russ decided he was hungry for breakfast food at 6pm, so he went out to eat since I was in no mood to cook. I told him to bring me back pancakes because I *thought* I'd be able to tolerate them. No such luck. I got through the day yesterday on one little bowl of applesauce and about 3 cans of diet mountain dew. Fun stuff.

Today was good though. I'm still not 100% but I feel MUCH better. I could actually think about decorating for Christmas again. I turned the Christmas music channel on tv, put my window decorations up, and then decided to tackle decorating the christmas tree. I have the tree pretty much all done, but can't seem to find my tree skirt. I have SO MUCH STUFF sitting out in my spare bedroom, it's hard to tell where it is until I start putting things away again. It looks like I'm celebrating every holiday up in my spare bedroom... all my different decorations are sitting out because I want to put everything back in the bedroom's crawl space in a SOMEWHAT organized My everyday decorations are in one corner of the room, my fall stuff is on the bed, and all my christmas gifts and christmas decorations I haven't yet put up are somewhere in the middle. My husband doesn't dare look in there or he'd throw a He's such an anti-clutter person!! Not that I'm a messy person, I'm just not as neat-freakish as he is. I tell him, "Hey, at least the room's not like this ALL YEAR! Give me a break during the holidays!" I told my mom I'm going to hold her hostage one day next week so she can come help me organize my spare bedroom.

But back to the tree... I knew it was going to be slightly more interesting this year with a toddler running around, but jeeeeeeeeeeeeez! It was exhausting! As soon as I brought out my two big storage containers of tree decorations, she was ALL OVER THEM. She pulled out my beads, which instantly got completely tangled...needless to say, they're not on the tree now. And you know how the round glass ornaments have the little detachable part that fits inside the top of them that holds the ornament hook???? Yeah... she got into one bag of ornaments and pulled ALL THOSE OFF. They were all sitting on the floor beside her. So I didn't put AS MANY ornaments down low on the tree... the ones I put down there are ALL non-breakable, and since we have an artificial tree, I bent the end of the branch down over the ornament hooks so she can't pull them off. She tried for awhile, but eventually gave up. (ONE POINT FOR MOMMY! WOO HOO!)

Oh, and while I was decorating the tree, she decided to start a new trick... my little monkey has graduated from crawling up on the dining room chairs to crawling FROM THE CHAIR ONTO THE TABLE. I had to pull her off of there like fifty gazillion times, then finally she spent the rest of my tree decorating time in her highchair having goldfish crackers and milk. I now have to keep all chairs completely pulled away from the table so she can't get up there. I'm sure it won't be long until she realizes, "Hmm... all I have to do is push this chair over there....." She's a quick learner, I tell ya.

Well, I'm gonna finish watching the Rockafeller Christmas special! (I'm SO into the Christmas spirit, I can't help it... I absolutely LOVE this time of year!)

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

What a day...

Well, it's a good thing I got all my fall decorations taken down yesterday and got the inside of my house decorated for Christmas (minus the tree)....because today I am a MESS!

My husband went to bed lastnight around 9pm or so because he knew he'd have to go out working in the middle of the night since it was snowing. Close to midnight he came down the hallway looking like death, carrying a blanket and pillow and laid down on the couch. He was moaning and groaning about how his stomach was "a wreck." He said, "Yeah honey, dinner tasted great, but it just wasn't the same coming up the second time around."

At this point, I felt fine... I was tired, but other than that everything was great. Then it was like BOOM, it hit... my stomach felt funny and I ran in the bathroom to greet my dinner for the second time around. Not fun.

So we were back and forth at this for awhile, then we laid down for awhile. Around 2am, Russ woke up to go to work and said he felt "a little better" but that he had thrown up again. I said, "Yeah I'm getting that feeling too..." and he said "Oh, believe me, the second your feet hit the floor you'll be running to the bathroom again." Which, unfortunately, was exactly what happened.

So we decided that the only thing that could have made us sick was the dinner I made, since it was the only thing we both ate that was the same yesterday. That was about 5:30pm or so, and we started getting sick around midnight. Dinner tasted great though, which is what I don't get. I made stirfry, and am always VERY careful to cook it thoroughly. I mean, the day I bought the meat for it, it went straight into the freezer, so it's not like I let it sit out long. The veggies I used were a bag of frozen ones, so no problem there... so I dunno.

So today I woke up headachy with an upset stomach but that was it. It felt more like a bad hangover than anything. (Not that I've, uh, been hungover at I just feel worn out, and so does Russ. But what has me wondering is that I all the sudden started feeling chilled and checked my temp... 99.3. Not an especially high fever that I normally get with the flu, but not my normal 97.6 either. And THEN I started getting achy all down my neck into my lower back.

Needless to say, I have NO IDEA whether this IS food poisoning, or a mild case of the flu. Grr. I've been online looking up the difference between food poisoning and the flu, and what I've read says that food poisoning gives you bad stomach cramps, etc... which I haven't had.

Sorry for the most interesting post, but I'm just kinda confused and bummed here. My relatives are coming in at the end of the week, so I'd hate to be sick and miss out on seeing them..and most of all if this IS the flu, I definitely don't want Aly to get sick.

If anyone has any experience with food poisoning, let me know if you think this is what I have. Being a nurse, you'd think I'd know, but they're just so similar which has me completely baffled.

Alright, off to TRY and lay down a bit.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Goats, shopping and cheesecake...what could be a more perfect weekend?!

Hello :-) I hope everyone had a nice, relaxing long holiday weekend! Did anyone go out and do lots of shopping on "Black Friday?" I told myself I WAS NOT going to go shopping that day because I didn't want to have to get stuck in the crazy hectic crowds, but my husband decided he wanted to go out and have a "family day." I wasn't husband rarely suggests we go out shopping!

We decided against the mall though. I figured that would be TRULY nuts. We went out to dinner at the Pittsburgh Chop House, then just decided to go to Sams Club. The crowd there wasn't any different than usual, in my opinion. Aly started getting a little tired and fussy at Sam's, so we just called it a day and headed home (after I made Russ sit in the drive-thru line at Starbucks for 15 minutes because I was totally craving a caramel mocha!!)

Saturday when I woke up, fully intending to take down all my fall decorations and start decorating for Christmas, Russ says to me, "Let's spend time together today. I got all my paperwork done, and it's not snowing... I'm not busy which is RARE, so let's go somewhere!" I had lots of house cleaning and laundry to do, but I gave in and figured that the cleaning and laundry will ALWAYS be there, so what's another day putting it off!

We decided to head to Wheeling and went to the Good Zoo at Oglebay with Alyson :-) I was just upset because we didn't make a final decision on where to go until we had left the house, so I didn't have my camera with me :-( Oh well, I'm sure there will be a next time soon. Alyson was a LITTLE interested in things... they have a huge model train exhibit downstairs and she really liked watching all the trains go around, and the little planes flying around above the train tracks! She also liked looking at all the fish and birds....she'd just stare at them with her mouth open! Next we went outside and strolled her around to see the animals. We went down to the barn and saw a donkey, pig and barn owls, then went over to see the goats and llama! The goats were the funniest things. You can actually walk inside the gate to interact with and feed them, and it was hilarious! They didn't want anything to do with us while we were inside with them, but once we got outside the fence and bought some food for them, they were ALL OVER US. They practically tried crawling over the fence when they knew we had food. That's what scared Aly... she was in her stroller staring at all of them, then they started jumping up and sticking their tongues out to get the food Russ had. We were both cracking up, but Aly didn't see the humor in it.

After the zoo, we went to the Olive Garden to eat... which I have been craving FOR-EV-ER! Olive Garden is like a treat for me.. we don't eat there very much. Afterwards I decided to splurge and bought a piece of raspberry cheesecake, which Alyson had no problem helping me with. She picked up a spoon and started sticking it in the cheesecake so she could feed herself. The poor girl wanted NOTHING to do with her chicken fingers and fries, but she was all over that cheesecake. mother like daughter.

So it really was a great family weekend... until we got home yesterday. We quickly found out why Alyson was fussy during dinner and on the way home... she wasn't feeling well, and let us know that by puking on the living room carpet. Not once, but twice. I had JUST changed her into her pj's and had her all ready for bed, then she got sick all over herself, AND all over Russ. I felt so bad for her, she didn't know what to do. Needless to say, she went STRAIGHT INTO THE BATHTUB. Poor thing. Luckily she was fine this morning... no fussiness or anything during church, and she ate a decent amount for breakfast. I was REALLY hoping she wasn't coming down with the flu. That'd be the first time she's been sick... she had a slight sinus cold when she was 5 or 6 months old, but nothing since. So I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

Well, I'm off to bed. It's already way later than I planned to stay up. I just got all into this Britney Spears documentary on MTV. It's pretty interesting, I have to say! Portrays her in a totally different light than the tabloids do.

But anyway... nighty night.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Thanksgiving updates

Well, I hope everyone had a fantastic Thanksgiving and filled your bellies with turkey and all kinds of yummy things!! :-) Me, I'm STILL full from about 5pm. I enjoyed lots of turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, pumpkin pie, etc etc... I think I ate enough food to last me through the weekend.

Anyway, Thanksgiving Day for me was, well, interesting. It's been go-go-go from the minute I woke up this morning... baking and getting things ready to take with us, then leaving for Russ's mom's house around 12:45pm. We had his mom's to go to at 1, then my parents at 4.

As I said in my previous post, this was the first holiday in a LONG while that we've spent with Russ's brother and their family. I didn't go there with high expectations that everyone would be holding hands and singing songs while swaying back and forth, but I WAS hoping that it would be a bit of a 'new beginning' to get the family back on track.

It was, to say the least, civil. Russ and his brother didn't talk much, but when they DID talk, it was civil. A bit forced, but pleasant. Basically "hi how are you, how have you been" small talk. (It's a start, I figure.) But I felt somewhat that you could have cut the tension in the air with a knife at times. It's just that no one really knew what to say to eachother. I mean, no one's gonna come out and say, "So.... uh...where have you been the past 3 years?" Ugh. I felt like I was sitting there twiddling my thumbs trying to think of things to say. I mean, what do you say to people you really haven't seen in 3 years because your husband and his brother are both too stubborn to give a little and put some effort into mending their relationship?!?!?

And the kids... oh. It just BROKE MY HEART to see them so grown up and to know that all this mess caused me to miss out in the past 3 years of their lives. I mean, the youngest was just a baby when Russ and I got married, so she doesn't know me from a hill of beans. When we walked in Russ's mom's house, she was sitting on the floor playing, and just looked up at us and stared as if she was thinking, "Who are YOU?!" It's just so sad. The girl is 3 years old, I'm her aunt, and she has NO IDEA who I am. The next youngest MIGHT remember me, but I doubt it. She was in our wedding, but was only 2 1/2 or so at the time. The two oldest girl and the only boy are the ones I got to know the most, and so they were talking to me alot, about what they've been up to and everything. It was so great to talk with them and hear about them being in dancing, basketball, singing lessons, etc. They are all growing up so fast and I really don't want to miss out on any more years of their lives!!

Tonight as I got into bed (obviously not able to sleep, being that I'm up writing this now), I talked with Russ about everything. I said, "SO...what do you think about today?" and he goes, "I dunno. It went ok, I guess... it was nice." So then I started talking about the girls and how one of the older ones told me before we left, "I just asked my mom how come we don't see you, Uncle Russell, Alyson and Nana very often." It BROKE MY HEART. I wanted to cry. I told her, "Well, we'll be coming over with your uncle Jon and Aunt Krissy at Christmas!" ANd she smiled and said, "Ok... but you need to come over before then. Come over before Monday, ok?" Then she just smiled and I gave her a big hug, trying to fight back tears as I walked out the door. So tonight when I talked with Russ about what she said, I started crying again and had to get out of bed for some "alone time" just to think. So here I am, blogging away.

This just sucks because I NEVER grew up around any disagreement in my family. I've never had to deal with not talking or associating with family members until I married into Russ's family, so I don't know HOW to deal with it. I just know I miss those kids like crazy and I just hope Russ and his mom and brother can resolve their differences and we can go back to spending more time together again. I know it's never gonna be a perfect relationship, but I'm hoping today was a small step in the right direction for everybody.

Here is a pic we had taken at the end of the day... My mother-in-law's husband's children are on the left hand side in the back. They are all sooo nice! In the front are all Russ's brother's kids :-)

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Hopefully there's ALOT to be thankful for...

Snow, snow and more snow... that was the forcast for today. And it'll be more of the same tomorrow. So needless to say, today I just stayed in my warm house with my little princess and my furbabies while my husband was out working. I baked some pumpkin bars to take to my mother-in-law's house and to my parents' house on Thanksgiving. Figured I'd at least get that out of the way.

Speaking of Thanksgiving... this year ought to be interesting for us. It is the first holiday we're spending with Russ's brother, who we really haven't spoken to in a few years for different reasons I won't really get into. Basically it's just a lot of disagreeing where Russ, his brother and his mother are concerned. I'm basically stuck in the middle, wanting to spend time with my in-laws but wanting to do right by my husband too, ya know?

Anyway, we're going to Russ's mom and her husband's house at 1pm, then to my parents' house at 4. Russ's mom informed us a few weeks ago that she asked Russ's brother to come, and he said he would. She thought Russ would be upset about it, but he's totally fine with it, which is great. He's been wanting them all to just put everything behind them and be a family again, but that just hasn't happened yet. It's starting to between his brother and mother, but it's not quite there yet.

I'm looking forward to seeing their family though... I think it'll be good for everyone to be together for the holidays. I mean, Alyson is 17 months old and she's never met her cousins at all. That just kills me. I really want her to be close with them...they're all such sweet kids. I've thought MANY times about taking Alyson over to see them (regardless of what Russ had to say about it) but when everyone stopped talking, Russ and I hadn't been married long and so I hadn't been around them much...I didn't feel like I was at the point where I could call and just stop by whenever. I dunno.

So maybe being together for Thanksgiving will help things along.I reeeeeeeeally hope so. I'd just hate for them to act weird towards ME... like I said, I just feel caught in the middle of this mess. I don't know why Russ chose not to speak with his brother in the first place. He says it was because his mom would call and talk about what mean things his brother said to her, and Russ was just tired of the whole situation and wanted no part of it. I just wish he, and everyone else, could put the past in the past WHERE IT BELONGS and get along again.

That's my wish for the holidays. It would be SUCH a blessing if it happened.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Aly's Christmas Pictures

Well, picture day at Sears went pretty well, although Alyson decided she DID NOT want to stand on that backdrop WHATSOEVER! She kept running out of the room into the waiting room to see this little baby that was out there! We finally realized that she did best when she was sitting, so most of the pictures we got are of her sitting in this little white wicker chair or on a wooden sled! She'd sit there JUST LONG ENOUGH for them to get a picture, then she'd be off running again. Take chasing after Alyson the whole time, combined with the hot bright lights in the room, and mommy was sweating bullets by the time we were done taking pictures!! It was interesting to say the least. Made me think back to last year, when we plopped her down into this fluffy cream-colored pillow for pictures and she just STAYED THERE. hehe...

So here are the pictures they took... smiling AND crying ones! She cried a few times, but was all smiles again about 2 seconds later.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Gettin' that Christmas feeling!

Well, we got our first official snow lastnight. Snowflakes came down on and off during the day yesterday, but it really built up lastnight! There's a decent coating of snow on the ground now! My husband is really happy because that's his livelihood during the winter--- snow plowing and salting parking lots! He was all excited to go out and work lastnight. He's always like that the first time it snows... he gets all excited to go out, but once he's awake for more than 24 hours he's not so happy He slept for a few hours lastnight and was planning to wake up around 2am and get everyone started on their jobs, but his pager kept going off and his phone kept ringing (how it always is this time of year!) so he's been awake since about 12:30am. Knowing him, he'll just stay up all day and go to bed at, like, 8pm or so.

This snowfall is the first time Alyson's really seen snow! Of course she saw alot last year but she wasn't old enough to remember it or really know what was going on! She was all excited looking out the window yesterday at the snowflakes falling down. She kept pointing and looking at me saying, "Da?" Then of course she's say, "Hi dada"


So today is the day I take Alyson to get her Christmas pictures taken at Sears! I'm excited... I hope she cooperates and isn't fussy! She's always a little reluctant at first, but the girls who work there are awesome and so she warms up fairly quickly!

I bought two different Christmas dresses for her this year... one to wear on Christmas Eve and one for visiting on Christmas Day. I bought them about a month and a half ago, and had never tried them on her. They're both 18 mo. so I didn't think there would be a problem with them fitting, but I decided I'd better try them on her lastnight JUST INCASE. So right before she was going to bed, I tried both dresses on her to see which one I wanted her to wear. Luckily I had a backup, because the one dress I got her is still a little too big. I might have to try to put my sewing abilities to good use and take it in a little. It's too cute to take back, and it seems like it'd be an easy fix.

The dress I wanted her to wear for pictures fits pretty well though. It falls a little below her knees, which it's supposed to... and it looks adorable on her. It's all one piece with a little red attached jacket with candy canes on it, and the skirt part has green and red polkadots. The underside is poofy tulle lined in a candy cane print ribbon. I love it! I've been into making hairbows for her, so I made a cute little red and green bow for her to wear. I just hope she keeps it in... she's in that "I don't want anything in my hair and I'll pull it out 2 seconds after you put it on me" stage!! I have to slyly slip it in her hair and then try to distract her so she won't feel around on her head to see if there's something 'foreign' there. LOL.

I'm not sure if I'll get a picture CD of her proofs or not, but I should get a link to sear's site so I can share her pics with all of you. I'll update as soon as I can and let you know how things go :-)

Have a great Tuesday!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

8 things

I got this from Maria's blog and figured I'd do it too...



1. Law and Order: SVU
2. The Biggest Loser
3. What Not to Wear
4. Desperate Housewives
5. The Young and the Restless
6. Extreme Makeover: Home Edition
7. Take Home Chef
8. House Hunters


1. Olive Garden
2. Red Lobster
3. Applebees
4. Smokey Bones
5. Gaslite (local)
6. Da Peppino's (local)
7. Naple's Spaghetti House (local)
8. Outback Steakhouse

1. did laundry
2. talked to my mom on the phone
3. went out to dinner with Russ and Alyson
4. took a nap for a change (Aly woke up at the buttcrack of dawn)
5. did some christmas shopping (starting early, or TRYING to anyway)
6. updated my blog for a change!
7. played with Alyson
8. watched a movie

1. Vacation in the Outer Banks
2. Losing weight
3. breakfast with our friends and their kids every Sunday after church
4. Sleeping
5. Holidays
6. spending time with friends and family
7. having more kids!
8. eventually buying/building our dream home!

1. Pay off bills
2. Vacation
3. 1 or 2 more children
4. a bigger house
5. Mother's ring
6. I'd like to have a plot in my yard cleared to start my garden (me too, Maria!)
7. a date night with my husband
8. For Aly to start saying "mama" again!

1. The Mummy
2. Armageddon
3. Billy Madison
4. Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (older version)
5. Labyrinth (LOVED it when I was little too!)
6. Wizard of Oz
7. 40 year-old Virgin
8. When Dreams May Come

Friday, November 14, 2008

The slacker's back

Wow, I guess I am WAY overdue for a post.

I'm gonna try to update the best I can.

For starters, I'll begin with the little princess in my life, Alyson. She's getting soooooooo big, it's so hard to believe. She's turning into such a little lady. Seems like it's something new everyday with her. She's just so curious and inquisitive (which can be good AND bad!) Because of her curiousity, she gets into EVERYTHING. I mean EVERYTHING. To the point where I now have to keep doors closed to rooms I don't want her in, and I feel like I need to padlock all my kitchen cupboards!! See, I'm kinda screwed where the child locks are concerned. The handles to our cupboards are so far apart that I can't find a lock that will fit through them, so that's out... so then I got the plastic ones you actually have to screw into the cupboards, but those wouldn't work either. I was so mad... I put them on my cabinets where I keep my cleaning products and everything, and was all proud of myself for doing so. I then tried to close the cupboard and.... IT WOULDN'T CLOSE!!! So I'm officially SOL where the child locks are concerned.... therefore I now have to resort to tying the handles with ribbons so Aly doesn't ingest Windex or something.

So once that cabinet was locked, she went for the spice cabinet. I came into the kitchen one morning because I heard her banging things around, and she had cornstarch all over the floor.... and all my spices and everything were scattered all over the kitchen. Thank God she didn't bust my bottle of balsamic vinegar I had down there, or then we'd have had problems!!

So the ribbon went on that cupboard too... and I thought I was safe. HA! Yeah right. She now gets in the cupboard with my pots and pans and gets them all out... but her favorite thing now is to get in all my cans/boxes of food. She grabbed the syrup one day, flipped the lid up and started writing on the floor with it. And her OTHER new thing is to push out the dog's water and food bowl holder away from the wall, sit behind it, and put little pieces of dog food into the water and stir it around like she's making soup or something. Unfortunately, she LOVES the dogs' water bowl... she likes to put anything she finds into it. The other day I found my dish towel in there, along with a pen and my sunglasses. (Not to mention I found my cell phone in there awhile back...ARGH.) Yeah. Fun times in the Hunt House. LOL

So most of my days are spent cleaning up the "Aly Bomb" that goes off 24-7. Russ just doesn't understand how I can let her get into everything. He says, "Just tell her no!" (Ha-- if it were THAT easy, parenting would be a piece of cake!) I say, "Honey... you aren't here all day every day with her. If I cleaned up right after her EVERY TIME she got into something, I'd be cleaning ALL.....DAY.....LONG." So as long as she's not getting into anything too crazy, I'd just rather clean it up once instead of 10 times. When I DO tell her no, she smiles, points her finger at me and goes, "No! No no noooooooooooo!" then runs down the hall.

She's saying more things these days, though she understands more than what she says. When I tell her she's getting a bath, she runs down the hall into the bathroom, peeks into the bathtub and starts turning the water on. When I tell her it's time to eat, she'll run up to her highchair... and she knows 'yogurt!' I give her one of those Dora Yoplait yogurts at night, and when I say "Let's get yogurt" she'll run up to the fridge and try to open it. When I open the fridge up, she knows exactly where her yogurt is and will pick one up.

She's babbling alot more.. her little toddler language I guess you'd say. She points to alot of things to show us what she wants, and will babble while pointing to it. She says "No" alot, "yeah", "Hi", "uh oh", "oh no" , "Doh-dee"(which I don't know if it's 'doggy' or 'Cody...Lucy's name comes out more like "Zu Zu") and her big thing she says ALL. THE. TIME. is "Hi Dada!" She was saying mama alot last month, then she just stopped and now EVERYTHING is "Hi Dada!" We'll be in Walmart and some strange guy will walk past and she'll go, "Hi Dada!" and wave at him. LOL. She waves at ME all the time and says "hi dada".... Must just be the phase she's going through now! I tell her, "Ok, you've mastered 'hi dada'... let's move on to 'hi MAMA!'

So that's a not-so-short update on Alyson. For Halloween I took her to my parents' house to help give candy out. She was dressed as a butterfly! We didn't go trick-or-treating, but she absolutely LOVED being dressed up and seeing all the other kids in their costumes! Usually I'd make a slideshow of the pics, but I decided to make a family website, so all the pics I take are posted on there. I had alot of friends/family members asking me to email them pics, so I figured it was just easier to make a website and give people the link and let them know if/when it's updated.

So here it is:

There are pics of our trip to the Outer Banks on there, plus pics of Alyson from summer til now. A little bit of everything. I'll be updating it again soon... I've been slacking on the picture-taking so I don't have much to post on there as of right now.

Well, I'm getting tired and I should have been to bed a few hours ago. I am SO not a night owl anymore!

More updates soon.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008


It's been awhile...yet again. The Hunt family's been pretty busy lately! I'll try to update the best I can.

Well, we took our vacation to the Outer Banks the week of September 6-13. We rented a beach house with a few friends of ours and their little boy. And it figures that right before we go, "Hurricane Hanna" (which luckily ended up being a tropical storm by the time it hit) was headed toward the Carolinas. We left home the night of the 5th so we wouldn't be driving the WHOLE TIME in the rain. Plus, we didn't know how Alyson was going to take her first long road trip. We figured it would be easier to do half the trip one day and the rest the next morning. WRONG. We ended up getting a late start the night of the 5th, so we only got about 4 1/2 hours away to Frederick, MD before it got too late and we decided we'd better get a hotel room. The hotel gave us a portacrib to use, which unfortunately Alyson wanted NOTHING to do with. We decided to try and let her sleep in bed with us. Another bad idea. We've never had her in bed with us and it's not something we wanted to start... so she had no idea that she was supposed to fall asleep, and she just thought the bed was a big trampoline for the next hour. It was 2:30am and we were all SO TIRED. I put her back in her portacrib and THANK GOD she fell asleep. For a whole THREE hours, waking back up bright and early at 5:30am. We wanted to get an early start Saturday morning, but not THAT early!!

Anyway, we got ready, ate breakfast and started driving again. Basically the whole six hours was spent in pouring rain as a result of the outer bands of Hanna. It was a mess... I think we saw about 10 wrecks on the way to NC.

We got to NC about 2pm, and thankfully the weather had cleared up by that point. THe rest of the day was just overcast, and the following 3 days were BEAUTIFUL-- blue skies and sunny. Wednesday was our only rainy day, so we all took the kids to the NC aquarium over on Roanoke Island. Thursday and Friday were beautiful, so all in all it was a great week.

Alyson absolutely LOVED her first beach experience. At first she was really hesitant to step on the sand since it was a different feeling to her, but once we took her down by the water and let the waves crash over her feet, she was IN LOVE. She would no sooner get back to the beach blanket and then she'd take off again, wanting to go explore. I took lots of pics, and will put them up on here in a slide show.

Before we left, we stopped in at the place we rented the house from, and booked it for the same week next year. Yeah, it's hurricane season, but it was such a great week to be down there... it was so peaceful and relaxing, and not so hectic like during the summer months. If we had the option, I'd LOVE to move down there :-)

I'll post pics as soon as I put them in a slide show.

As for updates with Alyson, she's doing great. SHe's a little over 15 months old now, and had her 15 mo. checkup last week. She's 26 pounds 8 oz. (92nd percentile) and is 32 inches tall, or 90%. Her head is still off the charts (big noggin like her daddy but doc said all is normal!) She's talking alot more now...still mostly babbling but some new words too. She says mama, dadda, dody (which is either 'doggy' or 'cody', i haven't figured which...), yeah, hi, uh-oh, dop (for 'stop')and she points her finger and shakes her head while saying "no no no no no." LOL. She's repeating alot of words now (well, trying to) so I told her daddy he'd better watch his mouth a little more these days!!!

Well, I'd better go...Alyson is getting annoyed that her mommy is spending time on the computer and not with her.

Alright, better go play with Alyson before her naptime. Later on we're gonna have girly time and go shopping... Aly needs some more cold-weather clothes. And so does mommy :-)

Monday, August 4, 2008

Weekend update

Well, I hope everyone had a great weekend :-) Mine ended up improving, thank goodness. Alyson is doing alot better now, which I'm SO happy about. It was so hard seeing her hurting like that! Her teeth are still bugging her, I can I've just been keeping up with the Ibuprofen.

We ended up going to our friends' son's 2nd birthday party on Saturday... it was a good time. Alyson plays SO well with other kids! The only thing, she thought she could eat what everyone else was eating... she was trying to pick up a whole hotdog and huge pieces of fruit and stick them in her All the kids at the party had ice cream cones, and there were baby cones for the little ones. The tiniest little baby cone I've ever seen. Alyson THOROUGHLY enjoyed her first taste of ice cream...even crunching the cone. It was too cute.

One thing I've realized now... there is NO relaxing at events we go to anymore. Whether it's a birthday party or a family gathering, I am CONSTANTLY chasing after Alyson. Russ just 'happens' to head outside with the guys so that he doesn't have to be the one to look after Alyson. So HE gets to relax and kick back while I'm watching to make sure Alyson isn't falling down stairs or shoving something she shouldn't into her mouth. Then Russ doesn't understand why I come out to him and say, "Can you puhleeeeeeeeeease help me watch her?!" LOL. Ugh.

As for yesterday, we went to church, then out to breakfast... then my parents came over later with dinner. My dad made AWESOME beer can chicken and baked potatoes on his grill, so they brought that over for us. All I had left to do was make a veggie and that was it. Oh, and we had some banana cream pie too :-) Nice easy dinner for me! But OH MY... if you have not had beer can chicken, you're missing out. It was even better than the rotisserie chicken they sell in stores. YUM.

So that was the weekend. Glad things ended up working out.

Well, Alyson is getting fussy so I'm gonna end this here. Have a great Monday!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Baby butts and babbles

Post about baby problems and poop ahead... just a warning for all those without kids.

Yesterday with Alyson was a repeat of the day before. I've finally figured out what ALL the problems are due to.... TEETHING. Ugh. I remember hearing about all the side effects of teething, and for some reason I didn't put two and two together the other day and realize, "So THAT'S what the problem is."

Not to be TMI, but Aly's been, uh, "going #2" ALOT lately, and it's causing MAJOR problems. Her stomach was rumbling and making all kinds of crazy noises yesterday, and she was NOT a happy camper. She was crying and screaming and kicking her feet. Ibuprofen and Mylicon didn't seem to help. And everytime she would dirty her diaper and I'd go to change her, she'd just scream and cry big 'ol crocodile tears. Her poor butt is so red. She's never had any kind of diaper rash up until now, so I've never had to deal with her being in pain like this. It sucks, because my little girl is in pain and I feel helpless that I can't do more for her. Yesterday she didn't even want to sit down on her butt. She just stood by the couch and leaned against it, then layed her little head on the cushion. I wanted to cry! Things finally settled down last evening... the stomach pains went away and she was *almost* her usually peppy self. She went to bed close to 9pm and slept through the night, so that was a relief. I thought we were going to be up half the night.

Today she's doing a little better... she had a little episode this morning when her diaper was dirty... her little butt is still hurting her. She cried for awhile but then settled down and was totally fine, and has been since. So I'm HOPING AND PRAYING that the rest of the day goes smoothly. We have a birthday party to go to tomorrow and other plans this weekend, and I just hope we can make it to them... I'd hate to take Alyson if she's still having 'poop problems.' I don't think people at the party would want her running around with her bare butt hanging out... lol.

But enough talk about my daughter's butt. I just had to get that off my chest... this is the first time I've had to deal with this, and it's just frustrating. As a mom, you want to think you can just wave a magic wand and everything will be all better with your child, and it sucks when you have that helpless feeling, ya know? *sigh*

Anyway... I have a funny story to share about Alyson. Last night I had her in her highchair, trying to get her to eat something before bed. While I was getting her food ready, she sat there playing with her pink Barbie cell phone. I just about lost it when I walked back in the dining room and saw her... she was holding the cell phone up to her ear and babbling into it. At first I thought it was just a fluke and that she just happened to put it there... then she put the phone down. When she picked it up again, she did the same thing. She put the phone right to her ear and goes, "Yeh? Neh. Na Na. Ya." LOL. I was cracking up. I put the phone up to my ear and said, "Barbie? Oh.. you want to talk to Alyson? Ok... here she is." Alyson watched me do that and was smiling, then took the phone and started babbling again.

Here are some pictures... she has the phone backwards, but she has the idea!




Guess she watches her mommy and daddy's actions a little more than I thought!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Glad I don't have many days like this...

Ok... I just looked in the mirror and yes, I still DO have hair. I've felt like pulling it out all day long!!!

UGH! It's been a crazy day with Alyson today. One of those days when I have NO idea what is going on with her. Usually it's one of 3 things... either she needs a diaper change, she's hungry, or her teeth are hurting her and she needs Ibuprofen. Today she's just been fussy ALL DAY LONG.

Like right now... she's been walking around whining for the past few hours despite my attempts to meet her every need!!! Her diaper's changed, she just ate, I gave her ibuprofen, and I've tried to put her down for a nap with no luck. She just stood up in her crib and cried until I brought her back downstairs.

So we walked around... we played and played and played some more.... and she's still fussing. I just feel helpless because I have NO IDEA what she wants and it makes me want to cry.


Update: Ok, so about 5 minutes after I posted this, I was holding Alyson on my lap and she majorly spit up all down my leg. Now she seems quite content with things and is running around with a pillow, laughing her head off. Guess her stomach wasn't feeling so well.

Now I'm off to do damage control in the kitchen... I hear her trying to stick SOMETHING out the doggy door. *sigh* I just LOVE days like this...

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

One month... I'm getting WORSE!

I've successfully gone one whole month and only posted ONE time. Not that I meant to!!! Blogging's just been on the back burner for me lately... things have been really busy! And to think, I thought that being a stay-at-home mommy would give me lots of free time... HA! Yeah right.

Anyway, there aren't a whole lot of things for me to update about, surprisingly. At least not many I can think of right now. Oh... the house thing. We're still considering that house I talked about last post... we did end up putting an offer on it, but the couple had just lowered the price by about $25,000 and it turns out that what they lowered it down to is basically exactly what they owe on their mortgage, so they aren't willing to budge AT ALL. Our offer was the highest one they received so far, but they didn't take it. Not even a counteroffer. The guy just told our realtor, "Nope... this is what I owe, this is what I want for the house." So whatever. If it was meant to be, it would have worked out. I mean, it STILL can work out, who knows. It's just a waiting game now. It's not like we HAVE to move, so we're just taking our time. Russ keeps telling me, "Just be patient." I tell him patience is not one of my strong points!!

So once the house thing didn't work out, we looked into building one. We spoke with a couple builders, got some price quotes... but decent home lots are so hard to come by around here right now. Plus Russ goes, "I don't know if I have the time to deal with all that right now!" He's so busy these days, and I highly doubt he would want to meet with the builder to discuss things like lighting and bathroom fixtures. But that might be good... he'd just tell me, "Do what you want." LOL.

Before I end my boring post, I just want to say CONGRATULATIONS to all your blogging ladies out there expecting again!! I have been so bad at keeping updated with blogs, so I was very surprised when I checked in on blogs and found out all the great news! WOW!! Around Alyson's 1st birthday, I mentioned to Russ that I'd like to start trying for another baby around her 2nd birthday, June or so. I said, "It might not happen right away, but if I DID get pregnant quickly, she'd almost be 3 by the time the baby was born... that'd be a great age!" Russ just kind of gave me that "deer in the headlights" look because the conversation took him by surprise, and his response was... "Um, can you bring this up again NEXT year then?" Men. He told me the other day that Alyson is getting so much more fun the older she gets. He goes, "I didn't know what to do with her when she was so little. Boy, if you could pop babies out at a year old, I'd say let's have 5 of them!"

Whhaaaaaaaaaat???!! The boy cracks me up sometimes.

But yeah, I AM ready to have another baby... I'd like to have at least one more before I'm 30. If it's a boy, I think we're gonna be done, but if it's a girl, we'll probably try ONE more time and see if we have a boy. I just definitely want more than one child since I'm an only child. While being an only child has its perks, it sometimes got lonely and I always wished I had a brother or sister. I just don't want Alyson to feel that way. So while ULTIMATELY we're waiting a year to really start trying, if it happens it happens... that's the way I see it. I definitely wouldn't be upset if it happened sooner than later :-)

Friday, June 27, 2008

Alyson's 1st Year in Pictures

I recently made a photo montage of Alyson, from birth to her 1st birthday... here it is if you want to check it out! It's lengthy though, about a half hour long. I ended up putting it all on a DVD and got one for me, my mom and dad, and Russ's mom and husband. It'll be nice to have for years to come! Alyson will enjoy watching it in the future, I'm sure :-)

Let me know what you think!

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

1 year ALREADY?!

Well, my baby is officially 1 year old as of June 21st. Boy, how time flies!!

We had Alyson's birthday party at our house on Sunday the 22nd... everything went great. It was supposed to rain that day, but thankfully the rain held off. It just sprinkled a little bit later in the evening, but most of the guests had left. We had about 40 people there in all. The biggest hit of the party was the new swingset we got Alyson for her birthday (mostly for the baby swing--she'll have to grow into the rest of it!)... alot of people had kids there, so they all played on it while the parents had time to themselves!

Here are some pics from the party. Like I said last post, the theme of her birthday was the "1st cupcake" theme... cupcakes and party hats, with the colors red, purple, lime green and yellow. :-) I was surprised she didn't get messier while eating her cake... she just took her time and ate it like a little

My cousin Brenda bought Alyson a Dora the Explorer Pop-up tent (Aly LOVES Dora!), and I took some pictures of her with it the day after the party. Cody got a little curious and decided HE wanted to go in the tent... I think he likes it more than she does!




Alyson's 1 year doctor's appointment was yesterday... she weighs 24 pounds 6 ounces (92nd percentile) and is 31 3/4 inches tall, which is taller than 100% of kids her! Her head size is still off the charts, but is progressing normally... doc said everything looks fine. He goes, "She IS tall... she looks 2!" She still had the stranger anxiety and didn't want much to do with the doctor... she cried most of the time in the exam room. Once she settled down, it was time to get 3 shots...poor girl. She was fine afterwards though, thank goodness!

So those are the updates with Alyson. It's just so hard to believe she's 1 year old already... seems like just yesterday all of us blogging ladies were finding out we were pregnant and sharing all those miserable and not-so-miserable moments with eachother!! :-)

Anyway... the only other thing to talk about is the fact that Russ and I MAY be moving... we went to see a house close to where we live, and we actually BOTH LOVED IT. Usually, one of us loves a house and the other doesn't, but we actually agreed on this one. It's a 4 bedroom, 2 1/2 bath house with about 2800 square feet, on an acre lot in a GREAT kid-friendly neighborhood. We're thinking about putting an offer on it within the next few days...hopefully we get it! It's been on the market for about 9-10 months, and the people have already reduced the price twice since the housing market is so slow around here lately. So I'm keeping my fingers crossed things work out! If things are meant to be, they'll find a way of working themselves out!

Well, Alyson is awake, so I better go upstairs and get her! Have a great week :-)

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Updates and Birthday pics!

Hello :-) Just a few updates... I'm slacking with my blog as usual,I know.

I had Alyson's 1st birthday pictures taken at Sears last week.. just got them back today. Here is a slideshow of all the proofs! She fussed a little at first when she started getting her picture taken, but eventually that big toothy grin made an appearance :-)

I've been busy planning her first birthday party... I've decided to have it at our house, though Russ is trying to talk me into having it somewhere. I just want to have it at home so everyone can just hang out and we're not pressured to clean up and be out by a certain time, ya know?

Anyway, I'm doing the "1st cupcake" theme. It's cute... not girly, really, but I like it. I was going to do Strawberry Shortcake, but changed my mind at the last minute and decided to do a 1st birthday theme. Here's what the theme looks like...


I have streamers and a banner for the yard, along with lime green, purple, yellow and red balloons, and 1st birthday foil balloons.... also got a highchair decorating kit (bib, party hat, streamer for on highchair, and a mat for underneath the highchair). I bought pretty much every item offered in this I couldn't resist. I'm just so excited for the party! I'm sending all the invites out in the mail tomorrow... I was just waiting for her pics to come back so I could put them in the invites. Now I just have to figure out where I want to get the cake from, and get the food ordered. We're buying the big dinner stuff from a local restaurant Russ does business with (rigatoni, chicken, etc), I'm making a few things, and my mom and mother-in-law have offered to make some things too. So I have all the details down, just finalizing things :-)

When I'm not party planning (lol) I've just been TRYING to relax (is there such a thing with an almost-1-year-old?!). Russ and I were out on the boat most of Memorial Day was a good time. Sunday was BEAUTIFUL... we took Alyson on the boat with us... she didn't know what to do at first and just stayed on my lap, then got a little more adventurous later and started crawling around. Monday my parents offered to watch Alyson for a little bit, so we went out on the boat with a few friends, then to my parents' house for a cookout.

That's about it for the excitement lately... just been enjoying the warm weather. I got all my flowers planted and things cleaned up around the house and on the deck. Today was a beautiful day too... mid 70's and a cloudless blue sky. Tomorrow is supposed to be sunny and around 80! I bought Aly a baby pool when we were out today, so I'm going to see if she'll go in it tomorrow. With as much as she loves splashing around in the bathtub, she should LOVE a baby pool! I'll be sure and have my camera ready :-)

Well, I can hardly keep my eyes open, so I'm gonna end this here and head to bed. It's so hard to believe that I used to stay up so late every night. Now, I feel like the furthest thing from a night owl. I'm now a "go to bed by 11pm because my daughter wakes me up by 8am" mommy. But I wouldn't have it any other way. For some reason, waking up early doesn't bother me when I'm greeted by Alyson with a big huge smile on her face, stretching her arms out for me and saying "ma ma ma ma!" :-)

Nighty night!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Random 'I'm so bored' post.

Well, I hope all you mommies out there had a WONDERFUL Mother's Day! Russ and I went to my Grandma's house on Mother's Day for a little family get-together... it was a good time. He was supposed to take me shopping that day ( I have been telling him about this mother's ring I LOVE), but we didn't have enough time before we left for my Grandma's house. He took me to the mall on Monday... I looked in a few jewelry stores, but didn't find the ring I wanted. I ended up getting some new sandals and some summer clothes. :-)

As for my being sick, I'm feeling ALOT better now. Almost totally back to my normal peppy self. Almost... I'd say I'm about 90%. 3 more days of Penicillin and I'm done with that.

On another note... is anyone else out there a Pittsburgh Penguins fan? They are doing AWESOME! I got away from watching hockey for awhile, but got back into it recently. Only 1 more game to win and they are up for the Stanley Cup! WOO HOOOOOOOO! :-)

Ok...just had to get that out.

Not much else to talk about. I'm just wishing I was back on a beach somewhere. This weather here SUCKS lately. It just doesn't want to warm up!! If it IS warm, it's all cloudy and rainy. Blah. Give me a nice sunny day, please! Preferably about 75 degrees! But maybe we WILL be on a beach again soon... we were supposed to go see Russ's brother and his wife in Alaska later in the summer, but it turns out that they are going to be in Costa Rica in June sometime, so we might just meet up with them there. Not sure what all is in Costa Rica, but heck, we'll try it. I'm up for anything!

Well, my little girl is making a mess of the house (which I DID have all nice and cleaned up) so I'd better get her before it looks like a tornado went through here. I already have to go out later and get us a new phone, because she's dropped it so much it doesn't work that well now. Our friends have informed us that it probably won't be the FIRST time we have to get a new

Alright... better get Aly now. Thank goodness it's almost nap time for her!!

Have a great day.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Punta Cana trip and my sick self

Well, Russ and I are back from our trip to Punta Cana :-) While it was great to get away for awhile, I was never so happy to get home. The first reason being that we didn't take Alyson with us so I COULD NOT wait to see her... the second being that I was SICK AS A DOG the day we came home. My sinuses started acting up during the trip, but I figured it was just the humidity, temperature change, blah blah blah. I was fine for 3/4 of the trip, then Monday morning before coming home, I woke up and just felt weird. My throat was feeling funny, I didn't have an appetite, and my eyes felt like they hurt.

We left the resort at 10am (long ride to airport) and our flight was scheduled to leave Punta Cana at 1:30pm. WELL... by the time we were ready to board the plane, I was feeling MISERABLE. My head was thumping and I felt like I was burning up, yet I was freezing. I had to be running a fever but didn't have a way to check. So THEN we find out that our flight was being delayed because the stupid computers crashed and the people who hadn't checked in yet had to get all their boarding passes and luggage tags done manually. UGH. So we boarded the plane at 1:40, only to wait on the plane another hour before taking off, waiting for all the people who got stuck in line when the computers crashed. I was NOT a happy camper. So there I was, stuck for 4 hours between Russ and some lady I didn't know. I covered up with a blanket the whole time, and Russ thought I was nuts because he was hot as heck. Once we got to our connection at JFK in NY, I was sweating bullets and felt like my head was in a sauna and the rest of me was in an igloo. I ended up finding a store that sold sinus medicine, so I took some, and thankfully it started working before we boarded the plane to come back to Pittsburgh.

So I figured I just had a sinus thing and it'd be better in the morning. WRONG. I woke up and could practically swallow, my nose was stuffed up, my eyes felt swelled shut, etc etc.... I looked in the mirror, opened my mouth...and.... strep throat. I was so TICKED. I haven't had this since I was a kid! Why now?! So I checked my temp and it was 102... and even though I felt crappy at the time, it was nothing like how I felt the day before, so God knows what my temperature was then.

I called the doc to get something called in, and left a message. THe nurse practitioner didn't call back until later in the afternoon, and she said there was nothing she could do until the next day (wednesday). So I suffered Tuesday, swallowing Ibuprofen and gargling salt water til I was about to yack. Wednesday morning I was MISERABLE, with a temp of 103.8...and thank GOD I got my prescription by early afternoon. I was about to suck it up and head to ER, though I was in no shape to sit there and wait all day.

So now I'm on Penicillin, and it seems to be working. My throat is still sore and I sound all nasally when I talk... I still ache.... my ears eyes hurt... my frickin TEETH feel like they hurt...and I still have white tonsils.... but at least I don't have a fever anymore. LOL. It gets a little better everyday. It just sucks because Tuesday morning is when we picked Alyson up from Russ's mom's house, and I couldn't wait to see her, but I felt so crappy because of being sick, and I hated to get HER sick. So Russ's mom came over Wednesday and a little bit of Thursday afternoon to help me out with Alyson... I tried not to get TOO close to her until the Penicillin kicked in. Supposedly things are no longer contagious, so I'm REALLY gonna feel bad if Alyson gets sick.

ANYWAY... that's the bad news of the trip. The trip itself was awesome.... the weather there was on and off rainy, but it was mostly cloudbursts. I guess people were right when they said it rains ALL THE TIME in Punta Cana... showers just come out of nowhere, and the sun will be out the whole time! Speaking of the sun... it is HOT down there. We were only on the beach not even 2 hours the first time, and Russ got burned pretty bad.... Mr. "I don't need sunblock because I'm already tan." LOL. He got fried the first day on the beach. Me, I put sunblock on, but every spot I missed ended up bright red, one being my

ANother thing... LOTS of boobies and speedos on the beach. JEESH! And wouldn't you know, the first set of tatas that we saw belonged to a dark leathery looking old lady. She didn't give a darn either. I told Russ, "Hey, if she wants them hanging out, more power to her." Russ especially liked when 2 girls who looked to be in their 20's laid out close to us and let it all hang out. He smiled and goes, "See? That's when these sunglasses come in handy." Men. :-P

Dealing with the resort, it was beautiful! We stayed at the Riu Palace Punta Cana,an all-inclusive resort. I'll put a slideshow of pics at the end of this post :-)

Being that I'm feeling pretty crappy, I'd better get some sleep now. Alyson's been waking up earlier now. OH--- by the way-- my baby's WALKING! She's still wobbly and falls down alot, but she's been taking off on her own and will walk all across the living room, down the hall, through the kitchen, wherever she wants. I couldn't believe it! She had been taking a few steps on her own prior to us leaving on the trip, but not until yesterday did she start walking longer distances. :-)

Alright...more soon. Take care!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

The big 2-8...

Finally... a few minutes to post. I've made Alyson busy by sitting her down in front of her Learning House with some cheerios. :-)

Well, as of Sunday the 13th at 10:51am, I'm officially 28. 2 years away from 30....hard to believe. The weekend was pretty nice... I didn't have to cook ONCE! Saturday we took the baby over to our friends Dean and Joelle's for their daughter Jillian's 3rd birthday party. Talk about little kid city! There were so many kids running around the house... I was thinking, "This is a glimpse into my future..." lol. (I'm already planning Alyson's 1st birthday party!)

Anyway, after the party, we rushed home and changed, took the baby to Russ's mom's house and picked our friends Joe and Denise up. Joe's bday is the 12th and mine was the 13th, so the four of us went out to dinner up on Mount Washington in Pittsburgh, to a restaurant called the Georgetowne Inn. It was ok... the view of the city was AWESOME, but I don't think that restaurant would be at the top of my 'places to go back to' list! Overall it was a good time though. The four of us went out lastyear, to the same area but to a restaurant down the street, Monterey Bay. AWESOME seafood. So we're thinking this will probably be a yearly tradition with us, going out to dinner for our birthdays :-)

Sunday was my ACTUAL bday... Me, Russ and Alyson met my mom and dad and Russ's mom and husband Steve at Red Lobster. Halfway through the meal, I asked my dad, "They don't know it's my birthday, do they?" and he said no, that he hadn't told anyone. Once the end of the meal came, the waitress asked if we wanted dessert. We were all stuffed and said no. A few minutes later, she comes back and puts this HUGE piece of chocolate cake with ice cream down in front of me, and here come the waitresses to sing me happy bithday. I looked at my dad and said, "You're a good liar!" and he laughed and goes, "I swear, I didn't say anything!" Turns out Russ's mom told our waitress while I was busy and didn't notice. Sneaky sneaky. So at the end of the meal, we all got to enjoy my "this is so good I could now die happy" chocolate cake...even Alyson got a little bit of ice cream.

After Red Lobster, we went to the mall and walked off some chocolate cake That night, my husband ACTUALLY OFFERED to give me a back rub. Oh, and I got a dozen roses too :-)

So that's about it for the weekend. Not much else has gone on since. Just cleaning house and spending time with my beautiful little girl :-)

Well, the cheerios are gone and she's pulling on the cord to my laptop trying to chew on it, so it's time to end this here. More another time.... :-)

Have a great night! (Mine will be spent on the couch watching the finale to Biggest Loser) :-)

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Attempt at some updates

I know it's been awhile, so I'm going to try my best to update...

Well,for starters.... Alyson had her 9-month visit to the pediatrician a few weeks ago... everything went well, and she's doing great! She now weighs 21 1/2 pounds (90th percentile) and is 29 1/4 inches tall (95th percentile.) The size of her noggin is still off the

She did great during the visit....until the doctor came in. I didn't know how bad her stranger anxiety was! I didn't think she had it that bad, but she wanted NOTHING to do with the doctor. She cried and reached up her arms for me to pick her up the whole time she was on the exam table. I had to hold her so he could listen to her heart and lungs and everything. On top of all this, she still needed two shots. (ugh)She ended up calming down toward the end, but even after the doctor and nurses left the room, she DID NOT want on that exam table anymore! I got her clothes and laid her back down on there so I could get her dressed, and she WAILED and wanted picked up again. Needless to say, it was an interesting visit.

Things with Aly have been good... seems like it's something new every week now! She's constantly getting into EVERYTHING, and has me running around chasing her around the house all day long. I'm trying to teach her to use a sippy cup, and so far it's going ok. She'll take a few sips, then she just waves the cup around, chews on the handle, and throws it on the floor. :-P She's enjoying her zwieback toast, biter biscuits, gerber puffs, and has a newfound love for Club Crackers. I've started doing more table food with her, and so far so good.

We've been enjoying the warm weather lately... she loves loves LOVES being outside. Prior to this nice weather, she hadn't been outside for a long period of time since October, when it was still somewhat warm out... and of course she was too young to know what the heck was going on. But now, she looks all around and just giggles at the dogs running in the yard, and just has a permagrin on her face... it's adorable! I had her outside yesterday while I cleaned things out on our deck...I took her Around-we-go walker (aka the "roundy round" as I call it) outside and she stayed in that and snacked on her Gerber puffs and cheerios and played with the dogs. I just can't wait to get her little baby pool out and let her splish splash around in it!! :-) This summer's gonna be so fun with her.

In other news, Russ and I looked at a few houses last week. I don't even know why we bother, because we always come home afterwards and decide we're not in the position to move, blah blah blah. But the real estate agent we deal with called one day and told us about a house he was listing that 'was perfect for us.' (He knows what we're looking for by now, after taking us to look at a gazillion houses.) So we went to see a few houses on Saturday... the first one, which I thought I would LOVE, was a total disappointment. Nothing like what it looked like in the pictures on The other one which the agent recommended, however, was awesome. It was on 1.5 acres and only 4 years old. The people who live there have to relocate for the wife's job, so that's why they are selling. The house is of those houses that actually IS in move-in condition. I wouldn't have to touch a thing dealing with paint or carpet or anything. It's actually the first house Russ and I BOTH loved. We seriously thought about making an offer, but the more we thought about it, the more we decided to hold off. It's at the top of our budget and we think that we could get more for our money if we wait awhile. Plus, the house just came on the market so we didn't know whether the people would hold off on accepting an offer and all that.

So, as usual, we have decided to stay put. Big surprise. I told Russ, "Do you realize that the past 3 springs, we have gone house-hunting? Is it just a spring thing, or what?!" lol.

Unfortunately, I don't have many more updates. I've just been busy redecorating the house. I got bit by the redecorating bug, and have been busy painting and switching things all around in the house. Russ just shakes his head and lets me do my thing. I tell him, "Just leave the decorating to me. I may ask you about a paint color now and then, but that's about it." If decorating were left up to him, every wall would be white with practically nothing on it. My latest project has been repainting the hallway...the color I originally bought for our bedroom, but decided not to use in there. So now I have to figure out a color for the bedroom so I can get THAT done. We need to call and get our bedroom furniture delivered, but I want the room painted first. It's just tough trying to get this stuff all done while Aly's here. She doesn't keep herself entertained for very long, and Gerber puffs and Zwieback toast only do so much! :-) She went to Russ's mom's today for awhile so I could get some painting done, so that was nice!

Well, I'm getting tired, so I'm gonna try to head to bed soon. Hopefully I can keep this updated more's hard to try and play catch-up where blogging is concerned. Oh, and almost forgot... I'm gonna put some Easter pics at the end of this. We went to church and then over my grandma's house for Easter, that's about it.

Nighty night :-)