Saturday, March 30, 2013

Strawberry pickin'

This past week the girls and I went strawberry picking with my grandmother. Last year, Meredith was too small, but this year she had a lot of fun!  It was cold and windy, so it was a much different experience than last year.  Because of the wind, we didn't really linger while picking the berries, but thankfully strawberry picking goes fast and we filled up our bucket very quickly.





Walking back to pay for our strawberries, Mackenzie's suburbanite nature came through when she got pretty excited about the rocks on the gravel road! ;)

Afterwards we went to lunch and then back to Granny and Papa's to make homemade ice cream with fresh strawberries.
Meredith was very interested in what was going on.

For those concerned (mainly Brandon), Papa was holding on to Meredith as she stood there on the bar stool. 

Mackenzie thought the ice cream maker was too loud!  Silly girl!
Of course the girls had to taste the strawberries before we put them in the ice cream.

And our delicious, but very sweet, homemade ice cream!

I've since made delicious strawberry bread and we've been eating a few every day.  Next year will be our last year to go during the week.  After that, I guess we'll have to deal with the crowds on a Saturday.  Of course, that would be the case with everything once Mackenzie starts school. :/

Anyways, next year we'll have another kiddo to take on our annual trip, so that will be fun!

Friday, March 29, 2013

19 months already!


It's the end of March which means Meredith is another month older!  Her vocabulary seems to be expanding everyday and I'm looking forward to the day when we can have full conversations with her and I can hear the girls communicate to each other.  She has finally become a bit of a cuddlebug.  Mackenzie loves to snuggle, but Meredith hasn't been a snuggler since she could crawl.  I'm so glad that she has come back to hugging and kissing and snuggling with us.

At 19 months, Meredith...
- LOVES her babies and any sort of baby doll
- takes one nap a day.  Sometimes she will forgo lunch to take a nap (typically after swim lessons).
- new words: wuvey (lovey), ninis (fingers), ip (ipad), hip (chip), bubbles, nack (snack), doggie, bup (up), hewo (hello), pay (play)
- has 12 teeth (6 top, 6 bottom).
- does not like to share and quickly holds tight to her toy if she sees another kid eyeing it.
- wears 24 month to 2T clothing and size 6 shoe.
- LOVES the "ip".  We might have created a media junkie with as much as Meredith likes to play on the ipad and ipod touch. ;)
- absolutely loves bath time now that we have started swim lessons.  She loves to lay on her belly and splash around.
- has started singing on her own.  Loves to sing most of our songs, but is not afraid to tell me no when she doesn't want to sing a particular song.
- has started hugging Mackenzie before bed.  It's the sweetest thing EVER! ;)
- loves shoes and dressing up just like her sister!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

What's next?

As usual I have several things to blog about, but don't really feel like uploading and editing my pictures in order to post them.  I thought for today, I'd list the future post topics and let you decide what the next blog post is about!

  • strawberry picking
  • handmade night stands (Brandon made these a LONG time ago!)
  • preschool unit (I'm actually 3 posts behind)
  • Meredith is 19 months old
  • new camera lens
  • decor ideas for the girls' room
  • bright colors and playing outside
  • Sunday dress up
  • new ultrasound photo

So that's my basic list.  Maybe I'll actually post about all of them in the next couple of weeks. That's probably wishful thinking, but you never know! ;)

In other news, today we had a great day at swim lessons!  Mackenzie went into the swim area WITHOUT crying (yay) and Meredith didn't cry until the very end because I made her get out of the pool! Ha!  It's a huge difference from two weeks ago.  Meredith went under the water several times today and was even pushed to the bottom of the pool to get a ring!  When the teacher asked her if she was ready to go in the water on one of the "swimming" passes I heard her say, "yesh".  She doesn't just say yes to say yes, so she was really ready!  If this is what it's like after 3 lessons, I can't wait to see what she'll be like in a couple of months or the end of the summer!  Mackenzie is also improving and I saw her get to a floating position on her back today all by herself.  Yay Mackenzie!  I noticed on the swim schedule it lists the completed skills next to each child, I'm assuming so that you know when they can be promoted to the next level.  Mackenzie has mastered skills 1, 2, 3 & 9 out of 10 skills (I think).  Now to find out what each of the numbers means and see what the missing numbers are! Since I was wet from swimming with Meredith, I didn't go into the office to find out.  I'll check next week and see what we can work on or what I can encourage her to do. ;)

So, that's all I have for now!  Let me know what topic you want to hear about next - I need a little more motivation!

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Tot School: RED, glass gems & shape sorter

So this recap of tot school is what we've done in the last 2 months!  Let's just say that with the first trimester pregnancy symptoms, I haven't exactly been doing much tot school with Meredith.  I'm now officially 13 weeks along and haven't had any nausea in the last couple of days, so here's hoping there will be more tot school posts to come!

Tot School

In January I had been pretty good about changing out a box full of items for our color of the week.  At the end of January I started our RED box and it's still the same 2 months later! ;)
We've looked at all of the items many times.  Some of the things we have in the box are: cups, potato head shoes, play food tomatoes and strawberries, jingle bells, balls, blocks and of course we had to add llama llama with his red pajamas!  I think she's finally getting it.  She doesn't say red, but if I ask her to get something from her red box, she knows where to go, so that's something!

Meredith was trying to get Elmo to smell the flower...
Yep, she figured out how to blow a whistle!
She looks so cute in headbands.  Too bad she won't keep them on her head for more than 30 seconds!
This is where Meredith says, "are you really going to take a picture of everything I look at?"  My response, "why, yes, yes I am - that's what I do." ;)
Something she really likes to play with is the shape sorter thing she got for Christmas.  She can get the circles, no problem, but obviously it take a little more effort to do the other shapes with more than one pegs.  She's getting better.
One of the few days I did school with Mackenzie, Meredith joined us in the end and immediately started taking the glass gems away from Mackenzie's activity.
Rather than fighting her over them, we decided we would play with them.  We counted, put them in and out of the container and tried making lines.
 

And last, but not least, one of my favorite pictures.  Mackenzie and I were painting, so I let Meredith paint with RED paint.  She was doing pretty well, but then I looked over at her and noticed this...
Who needs paper (or paper plate), when you can paint yourself?! ;)

So here's to more tot school and maybe this week we'll do a new color! ;)

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

little things

The little things going on lately...

1.  On Saturday, Meredith smashed her fingers in the door going to the garage.  I think 3 fingers were smashed in the process (last 3 on the right hand), but the ring finger took the biggest "hit" and she lost the fingernail for that finger.  Thank goodness, Brandon handled the blood better than I did.  I may or may not have had to lay down on the kitchen floor to keep from passing out.  I'd like to say it's because I was queasy from the first trimester symptoms, but I very well could have done the same thing if I hadn't been pregnant.  We put a band aid on her finger and headed to the emergency room.  Half way there she calmed down (thanks to a bag of cheetos) and we decided she didn't need to go to the emergency room since the only problem was the fingernail loss.  We stopped at a drug store instead and bought some first aid oinment and butterfly bandages.  Once we got to the church building (the reason we were leaving the house), Brandon fixed Meredith's fingers while she was strapped in her carseat, which is probably the best place to doctor a toddler's cut/scrape/owie.  The first day, she didn't use her right hand hardly at all, but by Sunday she was using her right hand and bending her fingers just fine to grip things.  Last night we took the bandage off so that the wound could dry up and heal and she hasn't complained about it at all.  I called the doctors office this morning to see if we could see the doctor just for a check up, but we won't get in until tomorrow.  We think it's just fine, but we just want to have a professional look at it.
As I've been thinking about Meredith's fingers, I started trying to remember if Mackenzie has had anything big happen to her.  She had her fingers smashed in a door at school, but they were only bruised and it didn't require any bandages.  I thought that was all that had happened to her other than the occasional scrape, but then I remembered what happened to her at 18 months...the bite from a kid at school.  That bite ended up bleeding and scabbing over and looked so much worse than I thought a bite could ever look like.  If this is going to be a tradition, I guess I should expect some bloody event when baby number 3 turns 18 months!  Maybe this one will break the tradition! ;)

2.   Mackenzie had another swim lesson today.  She has 2 lessons a week and after 4 lessons, she still cried this morning before we left.  She cried walking into the swim area too, but at least they didn't have to carry her in.  I had to take care of some paperwork in the office this morning, so I missed the first 15 minutes, but in the last 15 minutes she did really well.  There was only one other boy in her class this morning, so she had a little more time with the instructor, which was great.  Today was the first time she went down the slide to the pool and I saw her go to the bottom of the pool to get the ring!  Her instructor had to help help her get down there, but she went down and wasn't crying when she got back up! ;)  She also moved down the pool towards the slide by holding onto the brick (side of the pool), so I was completely impressed with how far she's come in 2 1/2 weeks.  There's hope that our vacation to Great Wolf Lodge will be fun for her and our summer will be great!  Meredith is also doing great in the water as long as I don't give her to the instructor.  Then she throws a fit, but still goes under water and kind of sort of floats on her back.  Oh well, she'll get over her separation anxiety soon, right? ;)



3.  Mackenzie has always like "beef".  I put beef in quotes because for the longest time, we called hamburgers, steaks, ground beef and any other type of beef, just plain "beef".  Mackenzie will eat chicken, but if a hamburger is an option, she'll choose it over chicken.  She once ate a small steak at my parents' house and eats my meatloaf  with out any issues.  The roast beef sandwich is her favorite at Arby's.  I'm telling you all this because I've been trying to get her to try other types of meat too.  The other night I cooked a pork tenderloin and Mackenzie was convinced she didn't want any.  While standing in a counter watching me prepare dinner, she decide she would try a slice of the pork.  While she was eating the first bite, she informed me that she LOVED it.  And she really did, since she ate SIX slices that night!  I was surprised at how much she liked it, but thankful that it's one more meal I can make that we can all eat together rather than making a separate meal for the girls.

4.  In 5 more weeks, we'll have an ultrasound that will tell us if baby #3 is a boy or girl.  I told Brandon that in 6 weeks I will finally feel more prepared and productive because I'll finally know what I can do with the current clothing we have.  As I said before, we don't have any baby clothing below 12 months, however Meredith is wearing 24 months and 2T clothing, so I have a ton of clothing that either will need to be saved again or sorted for ebay and the resale shop.  Knowing the sex of the baby will also be helpful in registering/buying the bottles, car seats, burp cloths, blankets and all the other baby stuff that can be pink or blue (I'm not a big fan of yellow).  So exciting!

So that's the little things that have been going on with us.  Have a great Tuesday!

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Family Pictures

For Christmas, Brandon's brother and sister in law had a photographer friend come and take pictures of the Meyers family.  I know Christmas was 3 months ago, but I'm slowly catching up on things that have happened lately.  Not to mention, we received the images about the time my nausea set in, so I never blogged about the photos.

Once I found out we were having family pictures taken, I intended to have a large canvas print made of the 4 of us to hang over the fireplace, but with the new baby, I think I need to wait for a more complete family photo.  I'm still planning to order larger prints for the house, just not the large one over the fire place.  The last piece of framed art I hung over the fire place last 6 1/2 years and one move, so I'd hate for this new little baby to be 5 and still be looking at a large picture of the family with out him or her. :/  Anyways, that's been my rational as to why I haven't ordered any prints as of yet and why my fireplace wall is blank.

Now, to get on with the photos.  I'm so happy with Shannon's photos and her patience with Meredith.  She had to act quickly if she wanted a planned portrait of Meredith with anyone else.  What can I say...she's a toddler and she was in a place she had never seen before.

Mackenzie had to do some ballet, of course...
One of the few times Meredith sat still!
Getting all 3 grandchildren too look at the camera and stay still was the hardest thing.  This is the closest we could get!  I say we, because I was trying so hard to wrangle Meredith and get all of them to smile while Shannon took the photos!  I guess with baby #3 on the way, I'll be an expert at this soon! ;)
They aren't looking at the camera, but they are all so cute!
This is the family photo I was going to enlarge and put over the fire place.  Meredith refused to be held, so we let her do her own thing!
What, a photo of just me and Brandon?!  This hasn't happened in FOREVER!  What you don't see is our nervousness as Meredith is playing on the stairs just beside us.  Shannon would take a picture and then we'd both look over and catch Meredith before she fell down the stairs.  And, repeat.
Close up of the girls...
So, enough about us, now for the rest of the family! 

Casey, Virginie and Indiana...
Dustin and Aubrey...
3 sister-in-laws...
And finally all the siblings, spouses and children!

I'm looking forward to future photos as our families continue to grow!  Thanks Aubrey and Dustin for the photos!


Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Better

I know it's only Tuesday, but we are doing so much better this week.  Yesterday we didn't watch any kid tv shows and did school for a couple of hours.  Today we did the same thing, so yay!  Not to mention swim lessons for Mackenzie went much better this morning.  She still cries at the very beginning and when she has to go under water, but she's doing a little better floating on her back.  She especially does well holding on to barbells and kicking to the opposite end of the pool.

The lack of kid TV shows is a punishment thing, but I was going to limit it this week anyway, so it worked out great that Brandon chose that punishment for Mackenzie.  I've been concentrating the last two days on one on one time with Mackenzie and actually focusing on what she says and having real conversations with her, not just saying, "uh-huh".  I don't know about you other moms, but I always seem to be busy doing household chores or doing nothing and don't always take the time to focus and actually play with my girls.  Add nausea and lack of energy and I've really been distant with my girls, it seems like.  These last two days have been much better.  We've actually played a different board game each day, not to mention the other playing, painting, and misc. activities.  Yay for me! ;)

This morning at 3 am, Mackenzie woke up from a bad dream, I left her room a few minutes later and figured if she didn't call me again within the next 20 minutes we were good until about 7am.  I was wrong.  About 3:50 or 20 minutes after I finally fell back asleep, she was calling for me again.  This time I brought her in to bed with me and Brandon.  By 4:30, Brandon had the ipad out and I was still determined we would all go back to sleep.  I was a little frustrated at 5:00 when the three of us were wide awake talking to each other, but I couldn't stay mad long once Mackenzie started telling a "story about a purple man".  I don't think I could try to repeat the story, but when a 4 year old is making up a story in the pre-dawn hours and her dad is being silly and making fun of her story while she tells you, all you can do is laugh!  We did finally all go back to sleep at 5:30 and thankfully because of the time change, Meredith didn't wake up until 7:40!

Surprisingly, I haven't been tired today or wanted a nap, so that's been good.  Other than the nausea that hit me about 4 this afternoon, it was a pretty good day.  I have a check up tomorrow afternoon, so that's exciting.  Looking forward to hearing the baby's heart beat again!  

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Can you keep a secret?

I don't have a secret anymore, but I feel like I'm confessing to you about what I've been doing (or not doing) these past couple of weeks.

1.  We started swim lessons this week.  Mackenzie cried for almost the entire 30 minutes on Tuesday, but she still did everything the teacher had her do, so that's good...I think.  Today, she cried when going into he swim area and I noticed that they had to carry her to her teacher because she was crying so much.  But after that, she did much better and I didn't hear her cry in the pool another time.  Instead, I heard Meredith scream and cry in my ear as we were taking a "mommy and me" class.  She actually did really well for the first 15 minutes and didn't fuss too much.  That was before the teacher took her to work on her floating across the pool.  Then, the crying began for a few minutes until we found some toys.  But then, she had to do a second pass across the pool with the teacher and that really set her off!  She didn't stop crying until after I had changed her clothes after the lesson.  The funny thing about all of this is that she didn't even have to go under water today!  How is she going to act next week when I'm sure they will start putting her under! ;)

2.  It's the 7th day of March and I haven't taken a single picture on my nice camera.  I feel so lazy and lax in my picture taking, that I actually feel guilty.  I feel like I could be missing great pictures and memories of the girls with every day I don't pick up my camera.  But the truth is, I just haven't felt like picking up the camera.  Today I got my new lens I bought with my birthday money.  It's a multi-zoom lens 18mm-135mm, since my basic lens (18-55mm) stopped working on the automatic focus setting.  I unpacked the lens, put it on my camera, took 4 pictures of the living room and put the camera back on the counter.  Can we say lazy?!

3.  We haven't done school in about 2 weeks!  I want to do school with Mackenzie, but I just don't have the energy.  I think we did one 20 minute session one day last week, but then I didn't do anything after that because Meredith woke up from her nap and I was too tired.  The problem is, the longer we don't do school, the harder it is for me to get motivated.  I'm hoping to plan some lessons this weekend so that we can hit the ground running next weekend and move right along like we've never skipped any of our lessons.  This is just proof that I could never homeschool the girls past preschool, when it really matters.  We'd wind up skipping 3 weeks and cramming everything in one week every month and no one learns well like that!

4.  I still have pictures on my computer that I intended to blog about weeks ago!  I think I may have some of them edited and yet, I haven't blogged about it.  This week has been the first week I've even felt like sitting at the computer long enough to blog.  I still have that DIY project I mentioned a couple of weeks ago.  All of my supplies are in the house and yet I have absolutely no desire/motivation to make anything.  What do I really want to do?  See number 5 below!

5.  I've started taking little naps on the couch when Meredith naps.  That would probably be the reason for numbers 2, 3 and 4.  Actually the pregnancy is the reason for the naps and lack of motivation.  I'm so ready to get into the second trimester where I will have energy and no nauseousness!  Only about 2 weeks to go!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

A pleasant surprise

Brandon and I are big planners.  BIG.  I have spread sheets and list galore of our future whether it's one week, one month or one year away.  With that said, a lot of changes come with a "pleasant surprise" baby #3.  Well, at least a lot of changes for us!

1.) First of all, we thought we were finished, so we don't have any baby items other than a crib and high chair - both of which we still use!  I've sold most items on ebay or at the resale shop.  No bath tub, bottles, pacifiers, swaddling blankets, carseat, you name it, we probably sold it!  Other than a few keepsake clothes for each girl, we also don't have any clothes under 12 months.  We did manage to keep the exersaucer and walker but that's only because my recent trip to the consignment shop was a week after we found out I was pregnant.  I decided to keep those items and only took a few clothing items that Meredith didn't even wear this time around and I knew I wouldn't use on the next child. 

2.) Within 24 hours of accepting a helper position at our church preschool, I found out I was pregnant and realized that with a September due date, teaching would have to be put on hold.  So, only Mackenzie will be going to preschool this next fall, not Meredith.  Mackenzie's dance and extra activities will also be put on hold from September to at least January because I will not be taking the little baby out in public for a couple of months during flu season.  Since both girls were born at this same time of year, I know this is what I will do even though this is my third child.  Some timelines don't change despite the number of children.

3.) Another big change of plans is our Disney World trip.  I hadn't booked our trip yet, but I was in planning and pricing mode.  We'll post pone it one year since the new baby will only be 5 months old when we were planning to go.  A little disappointing, but we are still going - just in 2 years instead of one. ;)

4.) The biggest change is that the girls will be sharing a room.  When Meredith turned two, we had planned on her and Mackenzie switching rooms since Mackenzie's room has the twin bed with rails and a gate on the door.  The crib turns into a double bed, so everything was going to work out that the girls would just switch rooms and all would be great!  Everything is still going to be great, it's just going to be a little different.  Now we need to buy 2 twin beds and a dresser so that they can share Mackenzie's current room and we can leave the crib where it is.  As Mackenzie gets older and feels she wants her own room, then she can move to the guest room, but I want to keep the guest room a guest room as long as possible.  For now, the girls (mainly Mackenzie) are excited about sharing a room.

Anyways, there are other little changes like needing another stocking at Christmas (I finally bought 4 matching ones this year), needing a kitchen table that seats 5, and I'm sure a lot of other little things we'll think of as we go along this unexpected path.  None of the changes are bad or things we can't do or afford, it just wasn't what we "planned", but that's ok.  All is well and we will receive a great blessing in September!  I can't wait to see what else God has in store for us in the coming months and years!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Meredith singing

I forgot I uploaded these videos quite a while ago.  Meredith loves to sing and here are some examples from a month or two ago.

video

video

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Never thought...

Meredith wears a lot of hand-me-downs.  That's what happens you are the second child of the same sex.  However, there is one shirt that I NEVER thought I'd be passing onto her, but God had other plans for our family!
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Yes, you are reading that correctly - Mackenzie won't be the only big sister in our house!  Come this September, we will have TWO very proud BIG SISTERS!

Brandon and I were a little surprised when we found out, but oh so excited!  We can't wait to meet the new little baby in 7 short months! ;)  Mackenzie says it's a boy, but we'll have to wait and find out in a few months!

Friday, March 1, 2013

Meredith is 18 months!

Wow!  I've been a stay at home mom for 18 months!  It's hard to believe!  Since February only has 28 days this year, we are going to pretend that today is February 29th, so that it can be exactly 18 months since Meredith was born.

We will go to the doctor on Monday for her check up, but I know that currently she weighs 30 pounds and as far as I can tell, she is 33 inches tall!  That would keep her in the upper 90's percentile wise.  We'll see what the nurse measures next week.  As for her "milestones"...

At 18 months, Meredith...
- loves to play with her "babies" or any other doll.  She sometimes will tell us to be quiet when she's putting them to sleep.
- takes one long nap a day, right after lunch and will show her lack of sleep by about 1:00 with a tantrum!
- added eyes, nose, "geegee" (Kiki - nickname for Mackenzie), baby, mine and mow (for cat) to this months words.  Her other consistent words are momma, dadda, eee (eat); pees (please), eef (teeth), su (shoe), yes (es), night night (ni-ni), bye-bye, no, off, yay, all done (ahh nun). 
- has 12 teeth (6 top, 6 bottom), but with some of this recent crankiness, I'm hoping some eye teeth are going to pop in soon.
- can throw a pretty good tantrum when she doesn't get her way.  She immediately falls to the floor and cries while laying on her belly.
- wears 24 month to 2T clothing and size 6 shoe.
- loves looking at books and thought a menu at a restaurant the other night was a great book!
- still loves bath time, but DOES NOT like bubble baths.  That resulted in a screaming fit and a scramble to get out of the tub.  Since then she's a little weary about any kind of bubbles from rinsing soap or shampoo.
- loves to sing or hear music.  She sings along and does some of the song motions depending on the song.  She also dances quite a bit to any music that comes on the stereo or tv.
- will stop eating whatever she is eating if you have a bag of chips.  It doesn't matter the flavor (cool ranch, sour cream/onion or plain tortilla), she LOVES chips.
- is not very cuddly unless she is sleepy or not feeling well.  She does not like to hold Mackenzie's hand or lay her head on my shoulder unless she is already asleep.
- can be quite the ham when people come over to our house.
- copies almost everything Mackenzie does.
Dancing!
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