Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Library with Friends

This morning Ms. Jules with Shaky Bugs was playing at the library!!!  We are getting close to school starting so I am trying to do as many of  Owen's favorite things with his as possible!  He as been going to Shaky Bugs since he was about 20 months old!!  To join in on the fun, we brought our friend Alia along!  Her mommy just had a baby a couple of weeks ago and needed a bit of help!  We were happy to bring her along and Addyson took Alia under her wing of care!!!
We all sat down to listen to Ms. Jules and Ethan was SO excited about the music that he stood up and bounced most of the time!!!!  He loves music so this was a perfect morning for him!
The girls were also excited!!!  See how they are standing while everyone else is sitting?!?!  They were so cute!!!  Really there was lots of excitement in the air since this is the first time my kids have seen their friends in a month!!!!  Addyson told me that "her's my best friend" when talking about Isabella!!!!  SO sweet!
Trying to keep my eyes on the 4 kids was a bit harder this trip..... Ethan is very mobile and very adventurous!!!!  He went to get a close-up view of Ms. Jules and her guitar and didn't look back to me once!!!!  He was too busy dancing!
Alia went over and got in on the fun with the big girls!!!  So much bouncing and dancing!!!!  One thing about Shaky Bugs is Ms. Jules has been singing the same song for years so the kids LOVE that they know what is coming next and know the words to the songs!!!  It is great fun!
Let's hold hands and dance, Addyson!  Oh, and the cute girly giggles that accompany the fun are SO cute!!!!
Where was Ethan?!?!  Still up front and center.... now chewing on his shaker!!!!
Isn't this picture so sweet???  Isabella is showing Ethan her maraca while big brother Owen looks on!
After all of the shaking and dancing we were hungry so we headed back to our house for lunch!!! Awww..... it is great to be back with our friends and doing the things we love!!!!  What a great morning at the library with our friends!

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Giuliana Rose

  Meet the newest addition to our family.........
Welcome baby girl, Giuliana Rose Zantow: born at 12:03 pm JULY 26, 2012 weighing 7 lbs 1/2 oz and 17 3/4 inches long.  She now makes my brother's family a cute family of 4!!!!
When my kids hear that their baby cousin was born and they were going to get to meet her they were beyond excited!!!  The got out of the car with gifts in hand and took off running to the hospital!!!
As soon as we got in the room I pick up this tiny new addition and was in love! Tiny, cute, and looking like big brother Troy and drawing us all in.  The kids wanted to see and couldn't get enough.  They were so impressed!
 Proud Aunt!  It is funny how a newborn baby feels after carrying around a 9 month old baby!  I remember when we brought Addyson home.... Owen felt like a giant!  And I had to be extra careful when I picked up Addyson making sure not to use the same amount  of "force" I did when picking up her big brother!  It was kind of like that today when I held this couple of hours old baby girl!  So sweet!
 What's even sweeter.... watching my brother hold his baby girl and seeing the pride in his eyes!!!  Melts my heart!  And what I didn't notice but see now is Gina in the background looking on when such love in her eyes!
Amazing how a baby can have that affect on people!  They just draw you in!
A couple of days later we went out to Giuliana's house to visit and they kids had a great time playing with Troy!  They got out his new birthday gift from Nammie and went to town bbqing and eating!  It was so cute to watch them all play together and Ethan wanted to get in on the fun!
 Ethan also spotted the cat and wanted in on that fun too!!!  Not scared of anything!  Not even when the cat hisses at him!  Nope, he is determined!  And when we pried his hands from her fur he screamed at us... Not happy to not be allowed to play with that cat!
 The cat ran off to seek shelter and Ethan was right behind her!!!!  Not going to give up!
Welcome to the family Giuliana Rose!!  
Addyson is excited to have a girl cousin to play with!  Get togethers are going to be so much fun with so many little ones running around!!!!

Friday, July 27, 2012

iPhone Pics of the Week

Home Sweet Home... and dinner thanks to Nammie!
He dressed himself!!!!  Loving his style!!!
We love Gusano's half price night... especially when our fridge is bare!!!
Taking our cars through the car wash!
See what I got Owen.....
Mail from Australia...... from Grandma and Grandpa
Eating our CSA..... straight from the bag!!!!
We've upgraded.... no more 4 piece nuggets.... we eat the whole sandwich... or half of it!!!
I can climb trees!!!
Walking..... gotta keep up with the big kids!!!
Whew!!!!  I'm exhausted!
Learning to tie shoes.... on his new school shoes!!!
(on a side note- I learned today why I cannot home school.... teaching is HARD work!!!)

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Headed Home

Our 3 weeks in Canada came to an end yesterday morning.... such mixed emotions involved with our departure!  This visit was our best visit ever with my family which made it extra hard to say "Good Bye"
Two nights ago Owen asked, "Why can't we just live in Canada?"  Not only did I enjoy my time with my family and friends, my kids loved every second of it too!!!  When we loaded up in the camper at 8:30 am and I saw the kids waving frantically out the window it was a cute and sad moment all in one!
And like many of the tradition things we did this trip (we have our list of "gotta be's" we do in Canada and Owen knows them all), having Opa and Nina come down to the main road to do one final wave was not left out of our gotta be's that we did!!!  We left and I had a heaviness in my heart.... I HATE living so far away from this part of my family! Turns out I didn't have to be sad for long..... we forgot all of our freshly filled sippy cups behind so we had to (well I wanted to) turn around and go get them!!!  We pulled in front of my parent's house and Opa told Nina, "They are back" and she didn't believe him... but why would she?!?! : )    Okay, another hug, kiss and short good bye and we were back on the road!
And just as I had expected, the kids were asleep within 45 minutes to an hour of being on the road!!  We were ALL exhausted!  Actually, the kids didn't do much day one of the trip.  I think Owen laid on the couch and watched shows most of the 13 hours which isn't normal..... remember, the trip up he didn't watch tv at all!  Brad kept asking if the kids were okay.... we worry a little since Owen gets carsick so easily.... I had to reassure him that they were just wiped out after our super busy week!  But, that's how I wanted it... sleepy kids for a LONG journey home!
Yes, Brad was with us!  He left work Friday and flew up to Canada... he was suppose to arrive at 11pm but after several delays he didn't get in until almost 2 am.... not ideal for a LONG drive home.  He was such a trooper though.  He slept in which I got the kids and camper ready and then we were off... spending his whole weekend driving!
The kids woke up as we crossed the boarder, we had to wait in line about an hour so the stillness woke them up... I thought they would nap again but they didn't.  It was okay though, like I said, they were pretty relaxed the whole trip.  It was going SO good that I actually tried to talk Brad into driving the whole way home..... all 19 hours of it.  Brad was afraid that if we missed out on the campground we had a reservation at, we would get an hour down the road and be in meltdown city with no where to pull over.... so, we stopped at 9pm and got the kids ready for bed... a bit crazy with tired ones but we survived and tried to rest up for day 2.
Brad had found a great campground with fishing, playground, and pool and we took full advantage of it all before getting back on the road.  First stop, fishing of course!!!
As the kids fished, Ethan and I reflected on our adventures.  After a busy month I'm ready to get home and get back into our routine, have our space, our beds, and the kids toys.  I know they will enjoy being back with their things.  That is what I am looking forward to... our normal!
Well really, it will be a new normal!  The kids have grown up so much this past month!  It is amazing to look at them now and try to remember them a month ago a little less grown up... Ethan is walking now!!!!  Addyson is a HUGE helper!  And Owen is saying such big things!  They have all changed!
Look, Ethan is swinging in a big boy swing for the first time with his sister pushing him!  I'm so funny... I think of Ethan much smaller and fragile than he really is!!!  I've avoided the swing for fear of his neck not being strong enough.... who am I kidding?!?!
Addyson also became quite the photographer this trip!!!  Maybe I'll finally start showing up in blog pictures more often!!! : )
Besides wanting to do everything herself and help with everything, she also told me that "I know everyphing!"  Yep, she thinks she knows it all at the tender age of 3!!!  So I quizzed her, "Do you know ______?"  No, okay, so you don't know everything but you are learning it all and open to learning, aren't you?!?! : )
You know who else is ready to start learning?!?!  This big guy!!!!  Yep, he'll start kindergarten in less than a month!  That very thought gives me anxiety!  My parents live right by the big Catholic church and elementary school in town and out front there is a big sign mentioning Kindergarten registration... every time I drove by it I got a lump in my throat!  Not ready for my baby to start school.... the other downside of heading home... starting school is THAT much closer!

I mentioned that he grew up a lot on this trip... it was fun to hear him try out new phrases and fun facts!
-I left the kids in the car to run in to ask Nina a question and when I came back he said in an exhausted tone  "That took you for ages!!!"
- Walking back from the park that is a 5 minute walk (if that) from my parents house, we were headed up the hill to their neighborhood and in front of a lady Owen asks "Mom, many more hours are you going to make us walk?"  That lady gave me a dirty look and I had to reassure Owen that we had only been walking 5 minutes and we had just 2 more minutes to go!

I wish we only had 2 more minutes to go to get home once we loaded up this morning.... we had 6 hours and that was the longest 6 hours ever!!!!!  SO much harder than the 13 yesterday.  I was SO thankful we drove the majority of our trip yesterday before we were super exhausted and anxious to get home!  We ended up stopping SO much, one of which was an hour trip to Trader Joe's in St. Louis accompanied with a visit in the parking lot with Uncle Aric and Aunt Emily.  We should have been home about 4 and ended up not getting home until 6.  What a long day!
First thing the kids did when they got home, got their toys and headed out in the backyard to run around!!!  They ran and ran and ran!!!  I think having  a yard to play in is the main thing they missed at Opa and Nina's house!!!  We were greeted by Nammie in Fayetteville who had made dinner for us and had gone shopping so we had groceries at the house for breakfast!!!  Oh, it is SO good to be home!  Now, if I can just get unpacked, settled in, and get ready for our school year to start!  For now, I'm just going to enjoy being "Home Sweet Home'!!!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Opa's Other Birthday

 I woke up this morning... Owen was already upstairs with Opa.  This is what he does every morning since he is up first.  It is nice, he quietly goes upstairs and let's the other two and I sleep and Opa turns on the tv for Owen before he leaves for work.  They also have their bonding time then.... so when I came upstairs this morning Owen proclaimed that today is "Opa's other birthday".  Yep, my dad likes to celebrate his birthday as long as possible.....

Now you see where I get it from!!!: )  To celebrate this morning Opa went and got 40... yep, 40 timbits (and we proudly ate them all) and coffees for the adults!!!!  Waking up to a treat like this is kind of nice... I don't mind Opa celebrating a "other birthday"!!!!!  No wonder Owen asked me if we could move to Canada!!! : )
And neither do the kids!!!!  Opa, glad we could be here to help you celebrate your "other birthday" too!!!!