Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Swimming in my new pool!

Today we went swimming for the second time in Sophia's new pool! I found it at Walmart at the end of the season last year for ..... get this .... $1!!! ONE DOLLAR!! (Ok, well, guess it would be $1.07, but close enough!) We have already spent at least 3 hours and I am confident many more hours will be spent in it in the upcoming months!! :) The best part is that it has a little canopy on the top to shade her from the sun!!

SMILE!

Maeve: "Here mom, here is a ball ..."

Maeve: "Not so sure I know what to think of this mom. Get me out of here!"

Can't wait to get myself a little tan this summer while I am swimming in 3 inches of water!! :) Ha!!

Allyson

PS> Keep on reading down the blog, I added about 4 more posts, backdated below!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Zzzzzzzz's


Only a mother finds joy out of silly pictures like these .... I know she is "just sleeping," but all of the positions are just adorable!!

Seriously, how can it be comfortable to sleep with your butt that high in the air??

She is my little frog ... amazing hip flexion!!

Don't you wish we adults could take 2 naps a day PLUS get 12 hours of sleep at night???

Allyson

Sunday, May 23, 2010

The price to be beautiful ...


.... an elephant sized tear, red eyes, and a bunch of snot!!


But doesn't she look adorable in her first set of pigtails??? I might be partial, but I sure think so!! Maybe she will decide to smile in the next picture?

Allyson

Friday, May 21, 2010

Happy 36th Birthday Daddy!!


Sophia's first coloring picture! Isn't it amazing, she can write and spell so well at 17 months! Ha!

Going in for a birthday smooch with daddy!! :)

To celebrate Nate's birthday this year, we dropped Sophia off at the Long's house (Nate's parents) and headed to Broadripple. We parked at 52nd street and started our morning run up the Monon Trail! We ended up running a little over 6 miles that morning! Believe me, I was exhausted and STARVING by the end!!! After a quick spit bath (shhhh... don't tell), we changed clothes in the car and headed for a breakfast at Cafe Patachou in Broadripple! If you have never been there before, it is a MUST!!!! Yummmmmyyy!!! Check out their website and menu, heck you might find yourself driving there without even realizing it ... follow your stomach!

We had such a nice time together celebrating his 36 years of life!! Sophia also had a great time at Grandma and Grandpa Long's house. She got to swing and watch Grandpa get his haircut!!!

Birthday Cheers to my HUBBY!
I LOVE YOU NATE LONG!

Allyson


Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Happy 1st Birthday Nathan!


Sunday we had the privilege to attend Nathan's first birthday party!! He is the last kiddo in our play group of 4 to turn one!!! He made such a CUTE birthday boy too!! Here is an adorable picture of his mama Denise and dadda Chuck .... I met Denise in my breastfeeding group at Clarian West and we have been friends ever since this little guy was born!!! She is a sweetheart and her hubby is such a great guy!! Sophia and I LOVE getting together to walk with Denise and Nathan! Sophia is already flirting with him!


Time for cake!!! Denise made the cake and it was SO GOOD!!

Posing for a picture .... both kids: "My mom made me, but I ain't gonna smile!"

Then Sophia makes her first move ... a back sided hug, tickled Nathan's neck ...

Next move in the play book ... arm around the shoulder! (Now, wait, isn't it supposed to be the other way around???)

How can you not smile when your kids acts so lovingly to another child??? However, Nate has some serious teaching to do if this continues ... she will have 5 boyfriends before she hits kindergarten! HA!

Allyson

Sunday, May 16, 2010

SURPRISE!


WOW!!!! Words can't describe my thoughts after my surprise 30th birthday party last night!! I literally had NO CLUE in the world all the planning that was taking place behind my back! (Insert: hahaha I secretly LOVE it!)

Saturday was supposed to be a normal day, I was working at Meijer for a few hours (ok, well, 6 hours), then I was to meet Nate and Sophia at my parents to celebrate Nate and my birthday! I chatted a bit after work, stopped for gas, and pulled up at my parents house wondering which neighbor was having a party! When I started to get out of the car I realized the garage was FULL of people and they were all my friends!!! I was absolutely clueless until I saw Sophia's little friend Maeve running on the side walk and Libby chasing after her! Sophia started running towards me and my heart was full of such warmth! All of my dear friends came out to celebrate my 30th birthday with me!! I was so humbled!! I know people probably got sick of me saying, "I am just so shocked, I had no clue!"

It was so much fun talking and catching up with all my friends!! The best present of all was spending time with them on a Saturday afternoon!! It was also such a joy to see all the kids running around and playing with each other! I think the kids were all exhausted after a few hours!!!

Here are a few pictures:

I finally realized what was happening ... :)
(Sophia saying, "Mommy, surprise, I am coming for you!")

I am still in INTENSE shock and start sweating at this moment! (Thank heavens for jackets!)

Ok, so I can fully embrace "30" however, I did not embrace those BLACK candles!!


"The Party People"
Yay for such awesome FRIENDS!!!
(ps. click on this image to make it larger if you want to see everyone!)

A special thanks to my mom, dad, sister, and Nate for pulling this off! You guys put forth so much effort planning, inviting, cooking, cleaning, and pruning (haha!)! Words cannot express my immense gratitude!!! Another HUGE thanks to all my friends for keeping the secret for all these weeks! I know it must have been killing some of you! :) I just feel sooooo incredibly loved and cared for and am thankful for all of the MANY blessings in my life!!! Thank you all sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo much!!! LOVE YOU!!

Happily 30!!
Allyson


Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Click it or Ticket


It has been such a blast watching Sophia's brain grow and develop over these past few months! Her vocabulary continues to explode each week! We usually talk about the item, point to it, say the word, and have her try to repeat it! She is actually doing very well!! Highly advanced for her age, I might add ... or maybe I am just biased! HA!! I think she is saying at least 20 words or so now! :) Maybe even more!!

On the way home from Trader Joe's today, Sophia started playing with the buckle/strap from her shopping cart cover. Always in the past, she played with it for less than 2 minutes, then on to the next toy or book! However, today it kept her attention for the whole ride home (over 40 minutes)! After about 5 minutes of playing around with the buckle, she figured out how to "click it" or fasten it!! I heard the click, looked in the rear view mirror and was amazed!!! I don't think she really knew what she did until I started praising her! She had this HUGE grin on her face and started clapping for herself! She asked for help to und0 it so she could "click it" again! She must have clicked it at least 10 times on our way home!! Each "click" was followed by a HUGE smile, a giggle, and lots of clapping!! :)


"I can do it mama! See, this is the first step!"

"Easy as cake!"


"Let's try again!"

"Oh yeah, gotta love me some bed-head!"


After her nap, I was able to catch a quick video!!! This has got to be a problem solving milestone, it just has to!!! (Never mind the bed head .... she took a great, hard nap!)

video

Such small things bring such big joy to my heart! It seems that milestones are more for the parents than the children!!

Allyson

Friday, May 7, 2010

Friday Fun


This morning Sophia and I had the opportunity to watch Isaiah until his grandpa came to pick him up! The kids had such a good time playing together! Isaiah is about 2 1/2 months younger than Sophia! We met Isaiah parents, Jen and Adam, at church and are now in a Small Group with them! It has been great getting to know them better!!


Milk Buddies!

"Here Isaiah, let me play you a little tune!"


The tickle-me Baby Elmo was the favorite toy of the morning!


We took a wagon ride around the neighborhood! Both of them had a great time!


Sophia watching Isaiah eat his breakfast! Each time I would feed him a bite of cereal, Sophia would open her mouth wide as if she thought I would give her some too!!

Have a great Mother's Day weekend!!!

Allyson

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

First Trip to the Indianapolis Zoo!


The weather was absolutely PERFECT as was the company for our first trip!! We headed to the famous Indianapolis Zoo this morning with Kathy and Charlie! (You might recall previous pictures from play dates with the Mulders in this blog!) Driving into town with the sun shining bright, my little tummy jumped for joy -- pure excitement and anticipation of watching your child see all the "real" animals for the first time! I am glad that we waited to take her until now b/c she is so much more attentive to her surroundings, plus she knows lots of words and can communicate her excitement! Here are a few pictures from our trip today!!

I think the penguins might have been her favorite exhibit! Thanks to her great teacher, Aunt Sarah, she already knew how to "waddle-waddle" like a penguin! She got quite a kick out of watching them nose-dive into the water and swim up to the glass to wave hi to her!

Polar Bear, Polar Bear ...

Hum, not so sure about this parking business. Let's get a move on! More animals to see!!

You should have seen the parents and teachers trying to explain THIS to the school kids! It was hilarious!!!

Another one of Sophia's favorite exhibits! Probably b/c they were right next to the glass and moved around a lot!

My arm workout for the day!

One very sleepy Rhino

It was so neat to watch the elephants drink the water! Sophia thought it was pretty funny!

Looking at the camera (and smiling) is not on her priority list these days .... gawking at other people, now that is VERY important!

Here is a little video while we were eating lunch!

video

Thanks Kathy and Charlie for an awesome morning!!! We hope we can join you again sometime this summer!

Allyson

Monday, May 3, 2010

CELEBRATE!!!

I have the best husband EVER!! Have I mentioned that lately? A few months ago, we were talking about my upcoming 30th birthday and he asked if I wanted to do something special. Usually these days (post-Sophia) my answer is no, you don’t have to worry about it! This year is different, this year is super special b/c I am turning 3-0!! I wanted to do something that I would always remember! Heck, I am entering a new decade!! He asked if I wanted a party …. that would have been nice, but super stressful to plan …. He asked if I wanted to go away …. that again would have been hard to workout with Sophia! I told him the best present would be a weekend spent with just him, doing fun things he planned! Kind of like the days pre-Sophia! (Not that I remember what life was like before her, it just sounded fun and adventuresome!)

I had no idea when we would be celebrating … all I knew was that I had to work 5/8 and 5/9, so it wouldn’t be that weekend!! This past Thursday night, my mom sent me an email asking when I was going to bring her grandbaby down on Friday! My first clue – it was this weekend!! He would only tell me that Sophia needed to go down to my parents house in b/w her naps. Friday I received an email from Nate that said, “Don’t eat too much today, save LOTS of room. Also, pick out a really nice outfit!” Ooh, la, la!!

When Nate got home Friday evening, we got dressed and headed downtown! He surprised me with dinner reservations at Fogo de Chao, an authentic Brazilian steakhouse! The whole experience was amazing!! Click on the link for details about a dining experience!! The salad bar was exquisite and the 15 kinds of meat were out of this world. I tried every kind, even had lamb!! The service was impecable which rounded out the dining experience. I highly recommend the restaurant to celebrate a birthday or anniversary! AMAZING!!




After dinner, the waiter asked if it was my birthday (Thank you Nate for including that in the reservation!), to which I happily said YES! He told me dessert was on the house! Although Nate and I were stuffed to the brim, I wasn’t about to pass up a free dessert from an elegant restaurant! Nate and I split the Crème Brule and didn’t have any problem polishing it off!! It was the best crème brule I have EVER tasted!!!



We left the restaurant and started walking around downtown. The weather was just perfect. Nate guided us to the Starbucks on the circle, the place where we first met face to face!! He gave me a super romantic card, along with a poem that signified our past (almost) 5 years together! We played a card game and then walked around the circle! He also gave me the 2nd season of the Office (b/c we are starting a new TV series after we finished watching every single friends episode (in ORDER)! He said, "I have one more gift for you ... it is actually from a lot of us ... at the Paper company." I had no clue!! Leave it to Nate to be witty!

We walked around and around downtown, until my little feet could take no more!

Saturday morning we slept in till 7:45am!! (YAY!!) He told me he had lots of options planned for today, but the weather was NOT cooperating! We ended up heading over to Eagle Creek for a long run (gotta burn off at least some of those calories from Fogo)! We ended up running about 2.5-3 miles, then stopped at the nature center. We did a 2 mile hike around the lake in the bird sanctuary! Saw tons of birds and even more nasty Canadian geese! After that, we finished the last 2.5 miles and let me tell you, we were both exhausted and starving!!

We each took a 2 hour nap, watched 3 episodes of The Office, then got ready to head to Broadripple!! We walked around Broadripple, my old stompin' grounds, for over an hour. We spent at least 45 min in Good Earth, the best health food store ever!! We even purchased our first Kombucha! Check out the pictures below!!




After all that walking Saturday evening, we stopped for a quick, lite bite at Qdoba ... 2 naked burritos ... order up! We ended the evening at the Starbucks reading for over 2 hours! I finally finished The Help! (450+ page book!) What an awesome, awesome book!!! You should totally check it out!!

The Help [Book]

Overall, I had such a fun, special weekend with my wonderful husband!! Although, I was REALLY happy to see my baby girl on Sunday afternoon!!! I think she was pretty happy to see her mommy and daddy too!! A big shout out to my parents for keeping her and loving on her all weekend long!! I know she had a great time!!

Still not 30 .... enjoying those last few days in my 20's!!

Allyson







Saturday, May 1, 2010

Visiting with Aunt Rhoda


A few weeks ago, Nate’s sister Rhoda was in town for a doctor’s appointment. We met her on the southside so Rhoda could have a chance to see Sophia. Rhoda lives in OH and hasn’t had the chance to see Sophia since Christmas. A lot has changed in Sophia’s life in the past 6 months, not to mention the fact she is walking EVERWHERE!

Here are a few pictures from our journey south!


I am not so sure about this hammock! Plus this isn’t a great shot of me, check out my big belly!! Daddy said my shirt should say, “I love great food” instead of “I give great hugs!” Silly daddy!!

Who’s there? Ha, Ha, silly Aunt Rhoda!

Ooooh, I love getting my back scratched! Aunt Rhoda is the best! Plus she has great nails, much longer than mommy’s!

Whoa, what an afternoon! Good thing I can kick back, relax, and sleep!! I am dreaming of white, sandy beaches!!

Also, last Tuesday, Nate’s parents came out and took Sophia to the park! She had a great time on their walk and LOVED getting the chance to swing! That girl is crazy when she gets in the swing … she would sit in the swing for an hour straight if you let her!! I just found out last night that she loves getting an “underdog.” She is giddy and cracks up with each one! Wears this mama out!! Thanks Grandma and Grandpa Long for coming to visit!

More adventures to come!!

Allyson