Monday, February 27, 2012

Video: Zak Smiling

I love babies, don't get me wrong... but they are really boring until they reach this stage.
I LOVE it when my babies can finally make eye contact and smile at me.
Makes me feel so loved.
Enjoy this lil' clip of the Zakster's cute little smiles.
There are some really good ones starting at 1:14.

Just ignore the annoying mommy commentary.
Why do I always sound so ridiculous in our video clips? *sigh*

Potty Progress

Just wanted to post a quick update on the potty training progress. 

Abby is doing great!

I was nervous about taking her to church yesterday.
We took her in panties with a pull up overtop.
Maybe it was because we were over prepared with lots of undies and outfits... but she stayed dry the whole time. She went potty for me when I asked her to, and then later she told me two different times that she had to go potty (only one time she actually did).
We figured she wouldn't tell the nursery workers she had to go, so I just took her to primary with me (which was a little distracting during singing time, but oh well).

We got home and she had one accident.
Right after she went #2 on the potty (I think that is why she wet herself before, getting ready for #2, and it felt different), that was the best, because cleaning up poopy undies is no fun!

She used the potty on her own and with promptings a couple of times after that. Then we headed to a friends house for a little party (partially to celebrate Ry's birthday). She had been doing so great we decided to brave going in panties (with no pull-up on top).
She stayed dry the WHOLE time. 
I thought for sure we'd have problems being distracted with friends, but she was amazing.
Way to go ABBY!!

This morning we had one accident at breakfast and then she has been great all day. 
She runs to her potty chair on her own and stayed dry while picking up Sarah from preschool.

There really has only been one frustrating day (the first day) and the rest has been great. Which is surprising to me, because I'm slightly sleep deprived and was worried I'd be lower on patience, but I've handled the frustrating moments great, so yay me!

I wouldn't say we are completely trained yet, Sarah's potty training experience is making my hopes hesitate, but we are well on our way. I'm so excited how great it has been going.

Oh, and I thought this was funny.
I drew Abby a little potty chart (copied Tina, thanks!).
It had three rows and at the end of each row was a reward.
First rows reward for going potty 4 times by herself was a sucker. Sarah was so excited for Abby to work for that sucker. Sarah even wanted to put the stickers on for Abby (she's kind of having a hard time with all of the attention Abby is getting). So Sarah made a potty chart for Zak. You know, for us to work on next week, after Abby was done. 

 Here are the two charts.

I love Zak's Chart.
She made it all on her own.
Looks like she wrote Zak and Potty on her own and then she must have looked at Abby's to see how to write chart. She even put the little presents on the end of each row. 
So cute.
I hasn't been so cute how Sarah keeps reminding me and Abby about suckers. Abby really doesn't care about the potty chart, or rewards. So if she doesn't care about getting a sucker and will go potty with out one, I don't want to remind her. Sarah can't seem to forget. *sigh* Silly big sister.

Anyway, it is fun to celebrate Abby's progress.
Love these mommy moments!

Oh... and I love these moments too...

The Zakster is learning to smile.
He is getting really good too. 

Unfortunately I can't get him to smile fully from behind my camera.

But here are my attempts.

I did get a little video of him smiling the other night (with really embarrassing commentary from me).
I'll try and get it posted today. 
Ya know... for the grandmas. 

Cross your fingers that Abby keeps up the great work!

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Sarah's 5th

Sarah has been so excited for her 5th birthday. 
She can't wait to go to kindergarten next year, and some how she was convinced that once she turned 5 she'd be taller, smarter and just... different.

I felt kind of bad the week before her birthday. I hadn't planned anything for her birthday.
So...we threw together a little party.
Luckily she IS only five... and thought it was an amazing party (even though... not so much)

Sooo... with a couple of "late" nights.
This is what we pulled together for her.

I've seen this idea in various ways. I would have loved to have balloons hanging from the ceiling... helium filled and just EVERYWHERE... but the lack of prep time...
we got 70 blown up balloons shoved in her room.

She still thought it was pretty cool.

We took Sarah to get donuts and chocolate milk at Giant Eagle (our local grocery chain store) 
and then dropped her off at preschool. 

Then my sweet friend Joan (Emery's mom) took Sarah home after preschool and kept her until the party so I could have the whole afternoon to get it ready (which I really needed... I was so unprepared).

Anywho... around 5pm, these cute girls were here and ready to go.

We did a camping themed birthday party.
I'll confess... the idea was sparked by a pinterest post I saw.
I'm so glad I stumbled upon it.
It was so much fun. 

I found a pattern for these camping satchels and the girls LOVED them!
(main culprit for an all nighter)

After the girls got their empty satchels they, of course, had to fill them up. 
So they went on a scavenger to find their camping supplies.

These clues were stapled to brown bags and hidden around the house.
I would have taken a picture of them... but I barely finished making them five minutes before the party and had to run around and hid them.

Don't laugh too hard (I do) but here are my little clues with pictures...
Sarah liked them, so I'm posting them for her to see later.
Ignore my lack of art skills and my sloppy handwriting. 
I was down to the wire! 

So... after they ran around the house they had their camping supplies.
A flashlight, bottle of water, survival snacks, adventure journal and pen. 

The very last clue led them to this...

The camping tent.

This was special because it was where G'ma Newey would tell them an imagination story. 

So the girls all laid down and listened to G'ma Newey on speaker phone as she told a story about the girls on an adventure where they ventured in the forest and stumbled upon a magic door. Brave Emery tested the door out and let the rest know it was okay to go through. On the other side they saw giant boulders... and trolls who like to eat little girls. So the girls took off their socks and put them on the trolls tongues so the trolls couldn't eat the girls.
I'm not quite sure if this was exactly what the story was... but it is what the girls told me it was about while we were eating cake and ice cream.

Shining their flashlights.

After their imagination story it was time to get ready to roast hot dogs over the fire.
While daddy went out and built a real fire... the girls and I made a campfire for our cake.
(I had planned to decorate it myself... but ran out of time and made the girls do it instead, I think they thought it was fun)

Here are the girls smashing up graham crackers for the dirt.

Ew... our yucky dirt on the cake.

The girls then laid down some embers (reese's pieces) and fire logs (pirouettes).

Didn't they do such a cute job!

After we were finished so was the real campfire.
Thank you Ryan!

Only, after Ry's hard work to get the fire stoked... it started to rain. 
So it was more like a smoke pit.
There wasn't enough heat to cook our hot dogs. 

Luckily we have a gas stove... and moved the party back inside.

We had marshmallows too... but both Emery and Sarah just wanted to eat the mallow plain.
Eva was the only one who wanted to make a real s'more.

On to the presents!

Heavy, heavy hang over thy poor head...

What do you wish with a...

{"BONK"} bump on your head.
 (although during Abby's turn she just bonked Sarah's head through out the whole song)

She thought it was so fun!

I even made Ryan pose for a picture.

(and as a result he made me do the same)

I love watching Sarah open presents. 
She is still at that fun age where she gets totally excited about EVERYTHING!

We sang her a birthday song...
ate cake and ice cream and then the party was over.

What a simple, FUN night.

We followed it up with webcamming with each grandma.
Perfect end for a {somewhat} perfect birthday!

Happy 5th Birthday Sarah!
We. Love. YOU!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

PT Day #2

Okay... it is day number two of potty training.
(post on Sarah's birthday coming soon... just need to unwind about this first)

I know potty training takes time... but I just wanted to post how it has been going.

We woke up and I pushed up my sleeves ready to tackle potty training today.
*husky voice*
"Let's DO this!"

Here is Abby getting the run down on the day.
Potty Party!

I have a movie that Sarah loved for potty training. 
It is called "Potty Power" it is extremely annoying great.
It really isn't that bad. Just poor acting, and songs that get stuck in your head...all day. 
Like the "What do you like to do when your sitting on the potty?" song. 
That is Abby's favorite. She sings it. 
"Sittin'...on...the potty"

Drink up girlie... we got to have lots of opportunities to figure out what is going on.

Well, while I had Abby just sit on the potty and watch shows she went tinkle twice. 
We celebrated.

Had a little dance party to get really excited about it. 

So then I got brave and let her get up and play with pants up.
No success at all. 
A couple of times she had accidents she stripped down and got new pants on.
But there were a few times she just walked funny and kept the wet pants on. 

Last night after I was cleaning up a stinky mess with her. I asked her if she wanted to put on some clean princess panties. She told me she wanted horsey panties. We don't have any horsey panties. But she was convinced we did so I asked her to show me. Well... she ran over and grabbed her diaper that has a Zebra on the front. Oh, boy.

So this morning we went over panties verses diapers.
I got her princess dolly and we pretended to pull off her panties and sat her on the potty. And then she went "tinkle" (I had a little cup of water that I dumped in the potty to make the noise."
We cheered and celebrated and then the dolly got to put on a princess dress because she was a big girl now.
We now have Abby's favorite dress hanging up in the bathroom.
We'll see if that is incentive enough.

I'll be honest though.
I'm tired. There have been a lot of really late nights this past week. 
I need a nap. 

I'm going to keep trying. 
My goal is to make it a week... and if she still isn't getting it, wait longer. 
I really would love for this to catch on, I'm tired of cleaning up the messes that come from Abby taking off her own stinky diapers. 
So cross your fingers for me. 

Oh... and what is your advice. 
We have church tomorrow. I'd love to just take her in panties and bring changes of clothes... but that could be messy in the nursery. If she doesn't go by herself today, should I take her in a pull-up? Or will that ruin any possible progress we've made?

Friday, February 24, 2012

Monkey See...

We don't take sunshine for granted here in Pittsburgh.
If it is sunny (and hasn't recently rained a lot) we're at the park!

"Hi, mom!"

"Hi Momma!"

"Helllloooooo Mommy!"

It was still al little chilly, but the sun was out, had to soak in some of that Vitamin D!
Even the Zakster enjoyed the fresh air.

Until he got a little sleepy.

Sisters swinging.

Oh how this girl loves the swings!

Sisters sliding.

Now to teach them not to climb up the wrong way
(I'm fine with it, but some fellow park moms aren't always)

This big girl learned how to do the monkey bars.
All. By. Herself! 

There were a couple of times I thought she'd fall...

But she always managed to catch herself.

So focused.

And proud of herself.

Way to go Sarah!

Abby was being a Monkey in her own little way.

Oh, thank you, THANK YOU Mr. Sun for visiting us in the 'Burgh. 
This cooped up mommy really needed it!