Wednesday, April 29, 2009

6 Months Already?

Can you believe that Anna is 6 months old today? Where has the time gone? She has changed so much over the last few months. Today we went to the doctor and she was such a trooper. She got 3 shots and cried a tinny bit and that was it. I had to laugh when the doctor told me she is a little on the short side. Great, she got my height and her dad's ears. :) Anna is such a happy little girl. It doesn't take much to make her smile. Here are a few of her favorite things:
Anna loves to eat "real" food. So far she has had rice cereal, oatmeal, green beans, carrots, peas, and butternut squash. She loves them all. Her favorite part of eating is when I let her play with her sippy cup when she is all done. She loves to chew on the end of the cup. She hasn't figured out how to get any water out of it yet, but it sure is fun to swing it around and bang it on the tray.
Anna officially graduated from being swaddled to just sleeping in her crib. We figured it was time to stop swaddling her. She has done fantastic. She will play in her crib with her animals and then fall asleep. As you can see, she has a great time with her little friends.
Who wouldn't want to try and eat such cute little toes? Anna pulls her socks off any chance she gets and tries to put her toes in her mouth. She doesn't always get them quite in her mouth, but she loves just holding them.
Anna's biggest accomplishment has been sitting up by herself. WOW, how different is the day when you can sit your baby down with some toys and she just plays? Anna loves playing with her cups and balls the most. (Really anything that she can pick up and bang together, and then stick in her mouth.) She has gotten really good at passing objects from one hand to the other. We sure love her. Her smiles and her cute little laughs are the best part of the day.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

How Much Have You Done?

I normally don't have anything to do with little pass-it-along blog chain things, but this one was very interesting.  If anything, it sure makes you think about all the stuff you'd like to do.

Rules: Anything you have done has to be in colored, bold, and/or underlined. How much have you done? It only takes about 5 minutes…Just do's fun!
1. Started your own blog
2. Slept under the stars
3. Played in a band
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower
7. Been to Disneyland  (Not as many times as Disney World)
8. Climbed a mountain
9. Held a Praying Mantis
10. Sang a solo
11. Bungee jumped
12. Visited Paris
13. Watched an amazing lightning storm
14. Taught yourself an art from scratch
15. Adopted a child
16. Had food poisoning...
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
18. Grown your own vegetables
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France
20. Slept on an overnight train
21. Had a pillow fight
22. Hitch hiked
23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill
24. Built a snow fort
25. Held a lamb
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Ran a Marathon (Do lots of 1/2 marathons count?)
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice
29. Seen a total eclipse
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset
31. Hit a home run
32. Been on a cruise
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors
35. Seen an Amish community 
36. Taught yourself a new language (If a mission counts)
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing
40. Seen Michelangelo’s David (It didn't say "in person" that time :)
41. Sung karaoke
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
44. Visited Africa
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight
47. Had your portrait painted
48. Gone deep sea fishing
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
51. Gone scuba diving
52. Kissed in the rain
53. Played in the mud
54. Gone to a drive-in theater
55. Been in a movie
56. Visited the Great Wall of China
57. Started a business
58. Taken a martial arts class
59. Visited Russia
60. Served at a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies
62. Gone whale watching
63. Got flowers for no reason
64. Donated blood
65. Gone sky diving
66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
67. Bounced a check
68. Flown in a helicopter 
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
71. Eaten Caviar
72. Pieced a quilt
73. Stood in Times Square
74. Toured the Everglades
75. Been fired from a job
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
77. Broken a bone
78. Been on a speeding motorcycle
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person
80. Published a book
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had your picture in the newspaper
85. Read the entire Bible (I think so)
86. Visited the White House
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating.
88. Had chickenpox
89. Saved someone’s life
90. Sat on a jury
91. Met someone famous
92. Joined a book club
93. Lost a loved one
94. Had a baby
95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake
97. Been involved in a law suit
98. Owned a cell phone
99. Been stung by a bee
100. Visited Italy

I scored a 48 how about you?

Monday, April 27, 2009

Happily Addicted

Some girls buy shoes, I am definitely not one of those girls. I am happily addicted to music. I could listen to music all day long. I listen to all kinds of music (not rap, I HATE RAP!). People are often surprised by how many different types of music I like. When I look back on my life, different songs are like the soundtrack of my life. Music was something that was important to my dad. He was always listening to music. I have many fond memories of sitting and watching MTV videos with him as he would try to find ones that were "ok" to show at the rink. When I started earning money, I would often by tapes and then CDs. I have tons of CDs! And now you can just buy stuff on i tunes. Anyway, music just makes me smile. Lately I have spent a lot of time listening to movie soundtracks. In order for a movie to be "good" in my mind it has got to have a killer soundtrack. I love just sitting and watching the credits of a movie and listening to the soundtrack (maybe I should tell Devin that so he doesn't just skip through the credits). Some of my favorite movie soundtracks are....The Last of the Mohicans, Little Women, Far and Away, Emma, Pirates of the Caribbean, Pride and Prejudice, Anne of Green Gables, The Lord of the Rings, Finding Neverland...oh that one is really good. ....I could go on and on. Anything by Rachel Portman is FANTASTIC!!!!! Sometimes I just listen to my John Williams station on Pandora and I play name that movie.
Ok, I'm done. You get the point??? Music is my addiction. I'm always up for new favorite songs and artists. What are some of your favorite artists, songs, or soundtracks to listen to????

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

A Close Second

Who can forget two summers ago when the world stood still so we could all sit and read the final Harry Potter? I don't know if I'm the only one out there, but there are times when I crave a little bit of Harry Potter. You know what I'm talking about? How we counted down the days until the book was released? How you drop everything to read, read, read. Then you spend the next several weeks talking with everyone about it. I miss that. Given reading the book again is very enjoyable, but it isn't the same as the very first time you read it.
I have found a close second to Harry Potter though. Fablehaven. Last summer someone suggested this book series to us. And we've been hooked ever since. Just a few weeks ago the fourth book came out. Because we are on a budget, I went on the library's waiting list several months ago. I was actually only 5th in line. But then we were gone at Disneyland and ... long story short I finally got it, read it and finished it yesterday and was just thrilled with it. You know when you get to a point in a good book and your whole house could be burning down but you wouldn't care because you just have to find out what is going to happen? Yup, that is how this book is. Too bad Brandon Mull is an expert and cliff hangers. I just don't know how I'm going to survive until the final book comes out. But then again, we all lived waiting for the final installment of Harry Potter, so I guess I'll live.
If you haven't read any of the Fablehaven books I here by give you a homework assignment (can you tell I miss teaching school?). Read it. It is so worth you time.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Disneyland Day #4 & 5

Thursday morning we got up early because we had "Extra Morning Magic Hours." Poor Anna, she was asleep before the bus even got there to take us to the park.
We took a quick family picture in front of the castle.
Devin stopped to say "hello" to his friend with big ears, just like his.
And then made a B-line straight for Peter Pan. Anna of course woke up for that.
We then went on Dumbo. Anna was way excited.
Sadie would just point to the elephants and say, "WEEEEEE." Anna tried, she knew those things flying around would be fun.
When they handed us our "magic feather" Anna stuck it right in her mouth. I know, SICK!!! How many children do you think have done that? And how many parents have let them keep chewing on it so they could get a picture?
We then went on the Carrousel. It was closed the first day we were there and I was delighted that it was open. I knew Anna would love it. She loved holding on the the pole.
We had to stop and see if she could pull the sword out of the stone. Maybe next time Anna.
After that we headed over to go on the Matterhorn. It is no Expedition Everest like at Animal Kingdom in Florida, but going on any ride with Mark, Tommy, and Spencer is a riot! I still can't believe that Spencer really is tall enough.
Then we went on the Finding Nemo ride. Surprise! Anna slept through it.
Sadie had fun riding on Devin's shoulders while Anna was snoozing.
Everyone who was tall enough went on the Indiana Jones ride. After that we decided to split up. That way Anna could take her time eating and we could go on more of the "little kid" rides and the boys could go do Jedi Training.
Anna took a really good nap.
So mom and dad had a really good snack! What would Disneyland be without a trip to the ice cream store.
We went and did some shopping and got Anna her Mickey ears.
We then went on the Winnie the Pooh ride.
We had some time, when there weren't a million people around, to take some good family pictures in front of the castle.
Anna met her Fairy Godmother.
We then went on a bunch of the Fantasyland rides.
Casey Jr. Circus Train
The Storybook Land Canal Boats. (Sorry just a waiting in line picture.)
We went over to "It's a Small World." But it wasn't a small line so we decided to skip that one. I must say I love watching the clock outside the ride. It is pretty amazing!

We then stopped to feed Anna. Devin thinks I look funny feeding her. Someday I'll catch him in a little of the "father" action and he will look just as silly.
After meeting up with Dave and Marthe's family we went over to Downtown Disney. I can't get over how close everything is. But they don't have the space like they do in Florida so everything has to be close. We took one quick family shot in front of California Adventure since we missed taking one the day before.
And that was about it. We had a great time! Anna loved her hat and her little Mickey.
We were all exhausted! It is quite the adventure going to Disneyland with a little baby. Anna was so good! The next day (day #5) she pretty much slept the entire way home, no joke!
I guess that means she had fun too. We made tracks as fast as we could and made it home in just under 12 hours. We look forward to going back. Anyone want to go???

Disneyland Day #3 (California Adventure)

Devin is at a Young Men's meeting so I've challenged myself to finish blogging about our Disneyland trip before he gets back. So on to day three.

The last time I went to Disneyland was back in 1997. All that was there was Disneyland and a very big parking lot and two Disney hotels. Since then things have changed a lot! California Adventure is now where the parking lot use to be. I was excited to go to a "new" theme park. It has been years since I have gone to a "new" theme park. Because California Adventure doesn't open until 10am we went over to Disneyland for a bit to kill some time. We took the traditional "In front of the flower Mickey" picture at the entrance to Disneyland.
Then one of the funniest things happened. We thought we would go on the Indiana Jones ride, but the line was really long. So we decided to go on the Jungle Cruise. A side note before I continue,... This is Devin's first time to Disneyland. We went to Disney World on our Honeymoon. In Florida they have Animal Kingdom which is like a really big zoo type park with REAL animals. Ok, so we were getting in line for the Jungle Cruise and Devin goes to hand me Anna.
D-"You hold her so I can take pictures."
J-"Why? What are you going to take pictures of?"
D-"The animals of course!"
J-"Devin, they are all fake! There are no real animals on the jungle cruise, well maybe some birds and bugs."
D-"But I thought this was the Jungle Cruise?"
Poor Devin, I didn't realized that we skipped the Jungle Cruise on our Honeymoon. He was all excited for a REAL Jungle Cruise. We still had a good time.
Spencer LOVED it!
I am happy to report that the Jungle Cruise Guide's jokes are still the same and still as corny as ever. I love the Jungle Cruise!
We then decided to head over to California Adventure for some Tower of Terror action. Thanks to fast passes and stroller passes and just short lines in general we were all able to go on it several times.
After that we went on the Monsters Inc. ride. Then we went to Muppet Vision 3-D.
Funny how Anna loved things like Pirates and the Haunted Mansion, but she really didn't like the Muppet 3-D show. I think not being in motion had something to do with it.
After that the brave people went on the Grizzly River Run. Maybe "brave" isn't the right word, the people who were not cold and didn't mind getting wet and possibly staying cold all day.
After lunch we waited in probably the longest line of our trip for the new Toy Story Midway Mania ride. IT WAS WORTH IT!!!! We actually went on it twice because we liked it so much.
Anna was smart and slept through the line and woke up just in time to get on the ride both times. If you have been on the Buzz Lightyear ride where you get to try and shoot stuff, this is very similar but WAY better. You are spun around to face these big screens that look like different midway games. You pop balloons with darts, shoot ducks, many fun things. Sometimes when you hit the right target stuff happens too. A puff of air when you pop a balloon, a spray of water, all sorts of fun stuff. It was FANTASTIC!!!! It is even more challenging holding Anna and trying to shoot the gun at the same time.
In the afternoon we went over to "a bugs land" so the little kids could have fun going on rides. Anna liked Heimlich's Chew Chew Train.
David was brave and let Tommy drive the bumper car so he could video the family trying to "bump" each other.
I took the boys on the Ladybug Boogie ride. I kept trying to tell them that it wasn't like the Teacups, but they spent the whole ride trying to make it spin and ended up just falling all over.
We got to go on lots of rides. California Screamin' was excellent. It will be fun to see the park when it isn't under so much construction. The lake is drained right now because they are putting in a water/light show like Fantasmic. And they are adding new stuff all over. I guess they always give you a reason to go back again.
When California Adventure closed we headed over to Disneyland to see the fireworks. Anna was way tired and slept for the rest of the night. That includes sleeping through the whole fireworks show.
The boys had fun sword fighting with one of the park employees. She was outnumbered 3 to 1, but she held off the three boys pretty well.
Sadie even joined in a little bit.
Poor Spencer he had such a fun time he wore himself out and slept through the whole fireworks show. I think it was the next morning, really early morning, when he woke up crying, "I didn't get to see the fireworks show!" Poor kid!
Because Anna was sleeping, and because we actually found a bench to sit on, I sat on the bench with Anna before the fireworks started and Devin played with his camera. He even got some great shots during the show. I wish he had more chances to play with all the buttons on his camera that make it do different things.
We then joined the masses of people and went back to our hotel.