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Monday, February 25, 2008

Tire Day 2008

For those of you who aren't cultured, let me introduce you to Part 1 of Tire Day. A time of exchanging gifts (typically receiving them from the parents), eating lunch together, & exchanging tires for snow tires or vice-versa. More to come on the inner workings of Tire Day in a later blog, but for now here are photos of Nica's third Tire Day Celebration.





Saturday, February 23, 2008

Cherries are all the new black



It's totally true, and if you don't believe it then you should take a stroll into one of the many children's clothing stores. Okay, so maybe it's not the new "black" for runways, but for little girls who are toddling in our home it is most definitely. I think Ben can officially call me nuts with my cherry theme, which started with some cherry placemats I found in Leavenworth on our honeymoon 5 1/2 years ago. It has gradually crept into more of our kitchen, but I honestly didn't know it would pour over on my daughter. I guess I can only say, "Ben, you're right--I am a bit loony when it comes to cherries," but, in my defense, she looks so adorable in those small, delicious red things that end up making a fantastic pie.



We were also able to get together with G&G and Auntie Amber today. It was a lot of fun to see them and have Nica show off her new skills (walking while holding onto hands, talking, imitating, and getting Grandma (& even Auntie) to buy her new clothes & shoes). She looks so gosh darn adorable as she moves around the floor in her swimsuit.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Restaurant guide

Okay, so I still have a dream of opening up a bakery. In fact, I am currently working on my menu if I ever do indeed open one. I'm thinking more along the lines of a cupcake or cake shop. It sounds great to me and I have been concocting the various ingredients in my head and writing them down. So.....

...along these lines Ben and I were enjoying a sunny Monday in February in Bellingham, which we all know is not typical, but welcomed. As we were drinking mochas and enjoying a treat (b/c it was our 24 hour excursion w/o shmoops), we began talking about places to eat or drink in B'ham. We've talked before about there being no unbiased guides to eating & drinking in B'ham. If you've ever read anything in our regularly joke of a newspaper, you'll find very slanted & too kind restaurant reviews. It is really hard to find out real information on dining in Bellingham, b/c you either have writers who don't know how to accurately critique (probably b/c they're getting paid by advertising--yeah for consumer reports), or people who are loyal beyond loyalty's sake.

SO...I said, we should start some blog or review site of all of Bellingham's eating & drinking establishments, without the bias tape. On the side note, I have read people's comments on eating establishments and there is a fine line with being honest & blunt versus rude & you don't have any relationships b/c no one could satisfy you. I've read both, and whenever writers are on either extreme--it's hard to believe anything they have to say.

We're thinking every place would be rated on five things:

1. Quality of food
2. Customer care/service
3. Cleanliness
4. Overall experience
5. Price (I think this was the last one)

We'll keep you posted...

Playtime

MISCHIEF:

Nica has been doing a lot more playing and exploring and getting into all sorts of monkey business around the house. Auntie Amber watched her on Sunday night while we had our first night away since before she was born. As they were on the web cam with Grandpa & Grandma, Nica started to pull out the cd's and Auntie said, "No Veronica," which G&G quickly replied, "Oh, Ben let's her do that." Here's the scene of the crime:

That's just one monkeying around thing she does frequently when we're in the family room.

INDEPENDENCE via MOBILITY:

She is also getting more willing and wanting to become independent. She is currently loving us holding her hands so she can walk around. She'll want me to hold her and then all of a sudden push down onto the floor. At first, I would then set her on the floor and she would whine. I soon realized she was saying, "Mama, I don't want you to hold me, but I want you to help me walk." Silly mama!

She is also climbing up more and trying to figure out this whole other side of mobility we tall people know as "walking." When you watch her you can tell her brain is constantly trying to figure out how she can maneuver her body in the correct manner, which is amazing.

FARM PUZZLE:


She has this farm puzzle that makes sounds of the coordinating animal when you pick it up and put it back down. It has a dog, kitty, duck, lamb, pig, horse, cow, & rooster. She hasn't got the hang of getting the animals to make sounds quite yet, so I help with that part. The funny thing is how she reacts differently to the animals. She thoroughly enjoys the duck & doggie as you can see in the picture below.

However, when the rooster crows her face contorts, her lip curls downward and she lets out a whimpering, "mama." There's something about that rooster that gets to her and it happens every time, maybe she's knows deep down that any animal that calls to wake people up can't be all that good.



BALL BLOWER:

She really enjoys this vicious toy Grandpa gave her (I call it that b/c it's no fun for the parents who are constantly chasing after the balls to put back in the device). She has just learned how to start the toy by pushing down on the red button as you can see.

She likes pulling it down and allowing the air to blow dry her hair, dropping the balls (or random objects) into the hole, and looking down the hole to see how she can get the balls out from below.



curly head






Auntie Amber mentioned how wild her hair gets every time she sees her--you be the judge. She is definitely getting more curls as her hair grows out.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Barrettes




Nica has been constantly brushing her hair away from her ears lately, so I thought I would try to see if barrettes would be able to stay in her hair. I was quite surprised to find out that she didn't pull them out immediately, but actually kept them in her hair pretty much the whole time. Here are some pictures that you can kind of see the barrettes.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

One of these photos is not like the other




This is a photo of Ben and my first small group as a married couple. We were able to get together over Christmas time and have all the kids meet the Pells & their sweet girl. Derrick did a great job photoshopping his daughter in the mix. She was asleep when we took the picture, but in the one with her it's hard to tell she wasn't with us.

Other photos

Her new thing is to put balls (or other objects) in our mouth and then take them out, but not with her hands, with her mouth.

Another funny one

She's smiling at daddy

She's trying to get the camera

This is a diaper box with a little girl on the front, Veronica likes to touch her & talk with her.

the evolution of clothing

Nica unhappy in her clothes

Nica excited to see something she can destroy

Wait, it wasn't something to destroy--it was a chance to get back to the garden.

She thinks they taste & fit better in her mouth.

Pure Satisfaction!

13 months & balloons

Nica is now 13 months old and such a funny little girl. Ben and I spend a lot of time laughing at her and her antics. She has gotten back to eating well (what I would call eating well, while her non-eating well days most parents would envy). We went to Applebee's (an hour from Bellingham) and she kept staring at the balloons. Our waiter was very kid-friendly and he gave her a pink balloon. She loved it! In fact, on our way home she fell asleep and was still holding onto the string of the balloon the whole time. It was adorable how Ben pulled her out of the car and there she was just holding her balloon.








Here are some pictures, b/c we realized that we haven't added many pictures lately and grandparents & aunts/uncles need to keep up to date somehow. I thought I would also add her top five newnesses, which we find wonderful.

1. Whenever she is near a belly, she will scoot towards it to blow on the belly. If she sees a shirt covering the belly, she will pull the shirt up to blow on it.

2. After she takes a drink she goes, "AWWWW," the cleansing palate sound. Funny part of that is she was doing it without drinking, then I drank and said, "AWWW." Daddy drank and said, "AWWW." Then, Nica took her drink and drank some water and said, "AWWWW."

3. Dancing to the music. She is a natural at keeping beat. She has two types of dances, one with much velocity and energy; while, her other dance is very serious. She'll be playing with her toys and then hear the music, then with a serious look on her face, she will slowly move her arms and go back to playing.

4. The other day we finished eating dinner and I was taking the dishes to the kitchen. Nica was still eating with daddy, while I went to get a rag to clean up and I hear her saying with authority, "Mama!" "Yes, Veronica." The next that came out of her was agreed upon between Ben and me, "i'n dun!" Ben: "it sounded like she said, "I'm done--didn't it?" "Yes," I said.

5. Her new favorite drink is steamed whole milk to 120 degrees. I went out with my friend Tina last Wednesday, so Ben and little went to Starbucks. He told me that he ordered her a short steamed milk and put it in her sippy cup. He said she downed it so quickly, that she would shoot her head back to keep drinking out of it. Luckily, we have an espresso machine and we can give her a little treat (and that she can't get drunk on milk).

Sunday, February 3, 2008

eating grapes

This is a video from my phone of Nica in early December. What makes Ben and me laugh about it is how she covers half of her face, b/c she went through this phase of doing this. Quality isn't the best

Take two on food



Ben and I have boasted about our daughter's eating habits. However, I must retract this statement as of late. It seems as though little Nica has been becoming less interested in food and more interested in her environment. We've also noticed that some of her old favorites aren't as cherished as she once placed them.

I was actually getting a bit nervous and vocalized to Ben, "if she keeps gaining weight and eating at this rate, she's gonna be HUGE at two years." Maybe she heard me say that, but more accurately she is simply falling in line with typical one year old behavior. She is still quite a silly girl and we enjoy how she dances when she hears music, says, "ankou" (when she feels like it), and how she lifts up anyones shirt while they're lying down so she can tickle and blow on their belly. Here she is in her eskimo jacket.