Life as we know it

Our family adventures

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Presents, presents and more presents

When we got to Grandma a.nd Grandpa’s house last week, the presents were all sitting out by the Christmas tree. A bit mound of boxes wrapped in shiny paper. It didn’t take long for Allie to invade the presents. So we all helped take the presents to Uncle Jeff’s room.

Thursday morning Grandpa was wrapping a present for a friend and Allie was fascinated. He gave her another small box and wrapped it. She played with it awhile and then opened it, then asked Grandpa to wrap it again. She opened it again… and then asked Grandpa to wrap it again. This went on about three times, I think until we were ready to go out for the day.

Then when it was time to open presents on Thursday night, we all brought the presents back out. Allie took great delight in bringing the presents down the hall!

 By time it was time to open, Allie was raring to go. She wanted to open everything.

In true kid fashion she ripped through the paper and barely looked at what was inside!

She opened her own presents but didn’t stop there. She opened almost all of Grandpa’s, and some of Dada’s and Jeff’s.

Then we got to open more presents at Aunt Julie’s. She helped with the distribution by ripping off the gift tags. Then she enthusiastically ripped through these presents.

On Christmas morning there were more presents! These presents were special delivery from the North Pole. But I think by Christmas morning Allie  was a bit bored with presents. We had to keep calling her back to open.

For this one I’m not even sure she looked at what was inside!

Christmas night we were at Grandma and Grandpa Swanson’s with MORE presents! Allie was much more intrested in the cookies that her aunts and uncles were sneaking into her hot little hands.

At least she drank her milk! Finally on the morning after Christmas, we had our little family gift opening. Allie was a little more focused on that, maybe just because there weren’t so many people around.

She got some really nice things. A cooking set, a new baby, stuffed animals, pajamas and books. One special item was the scrapbook Aunt Jocelyn (sitting next to her in the picture above) made. She said she’s going to add to it as Allie gets older. It was so thoughtful! And useful since I don’t even know where Allie’s baby book is, let alone add anything to it.

Of course with all the new toys, we need to find space to put everything!

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This morning I ran 2.5 miles for my final run of 2011, and I reached my mileage goal for the year! While this wouldn’t have seemed like a huge accomplishment a month and a half ago when I expected to make my goal and surpass it, today I am beaming with pride and accomplishment. A month ago I didn’t think I’d make it.

I will hopefully start writing here more often as my PT told me I can run as I see fit because the running doesn’t seem to be negatively impacting my ankle! Unfortunately as I write this my ankle hurts a bit. Tt was tight and sore on the treadmill this morning and I probably should have cut my run short but I was determined to reach my goal. But I’m going to try to start upping my mileage soon. I’m excited!

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The tale of Woody and Buzz

Allie loves Toy Story. LOVES Toy Story. If we put any of the Toy Story movies on, Allie is mesmerized.
We started a tradition of buying Allie a Christmas ornament every year. When we went out to see Santa the Thursday before Christmas in Carbondale, we stopped by JC Penney to look for this year’s ornament. Toward the top of one of the display trees was a Woody ornament, which we thought was perfect since Allie is obcessed with Toy Story!
Grandma Durso also bought her a stuffed Clarice from Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. She wouldn’t let go of either Clarice or Woody! We had to sneak them away from her when it was time to see Santa.
We got home and Woody slept on the table next to the crib while Allie slept. Woody was never far away.

She even hung Woody on the Christmas tree!

Woody was plastic and part of his boot broke off. That didn’t phase Allie!

One of the things Woody says in the movie is “there’s a snake in my boot.” Allie started saying “snake boot” over and over after we said it once! She kept calling Woody buddy.

But alas, Woody didn’t leave her presence for two days, and as we were packing up Saturday morning, Woody disappeared. We looked all over the house and couldn’t find him. We thought he either got packed or thrown away. Now that most of our stuff is unpacked, I’m sad to say he must have gotten thrown away 😦

Allie’s asked for “Buddy” a few times since we got home. We change the subject. I’d like to try and find a replacement ornament but I don’t know how much luck we’d have since it was on clearance in the first place and now Christmas is over. We’ll have to get another ornament for this year. We’re also going to look into getting a real Woody doll!

We lost one toy but gained another! Today at daycare one of the girls gave Allie a Buzz Lightyear to calm her down at naptime. She’s been climbing out of the pack n play she sleeps in at daycare lately but she was occupied with Buzz and fell asleep and actually had a good nap!

Once she got up Buzz was glued to her the way Woody had been last week. We asked Allie who that is and she says “Buzz Year!” It was fun watching her run around flying Buzz and shouting “to infinity and beyond!” with her.

Buzz is bigger than Woody so I’m confident he won’t go missing! He’s going back with her to daycare tomorrow to hopefully continue to occupy her at naptime so she doesn’t climb out of the crib.

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Vacation from vacation

We’re back from our holiday travels. Mama and Allie are back at work but Dada gets to continue his vacation another week.

Truthfully I’m relieved to be back at work. Vacation is fun but there’s so much going on, no time to exercise or eat right, lots of traveling. It was so nice to sleep in our own beds on Sunday night and even nicer to have yesterday off. But it is oddly comforting to be back at my desk here at work. One of my good friends calls this “vacation from my vacation.”

We had a great Christmas. It was a great vacation too. It was SO nice seeing some friends we haven’t seen in a long time and spending a lot of time with family. I feel like we watched Allie grow up on this trip. It was so fun seeing her interactions with people. She usually had to warm up a bit but she was fast friends with everyone. She had a lot of freedom and she was so good. We started carrying on conversations. I would ask her if she needed to be changed and she said yes! She got lots of great gifts and has had a wonderful time really playing with them. She played hard and slept harder, though not nearly long enough!

But perhaps the best part was seeing her really experience Christmas. She loved the presents, though I think she was kind of tired of them by the end! She also loved all the cookies and surprisingly she also liked Santa.

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Christmas magic

Christmas week! Vacation! We made it! Last week was a bad week, but now vacation is here and its all fun. We got all the shopping done last weekend and I’ve even finished wrapping except for one item. We’re leaving for southern Illinois tomorrow, and all thats left to prepare for the trip is packing!

Yesterday Dada finished shopping for Mama and Mama finished the wrapping. When Dada got home we all sat together and watched “The Polar Express.” Allie has been really interested in TV lately and she’s been enjoying the Christmas shows on ABC Family. But her favorite by far now is The Polar Express. Its Christmas and its a train, her favorite thing in the world right now. We all sat together on the couch watching. Monk even laid on the couch next to us. We all clapped when we saw the happy ending to the movie. Allie was saying “polar express!” all night long.

Today has been a relaxing day. We decided to stay home and relax so that Allie could have a good nap, a restful day at home and then go to bed early. She won’t sleep enough once we’re traveling! While Allie slept, Dada took Monk to the kennel and ran a few other errands and Mama finally got the baking day she hadn’t gotten yet this season.

I’ve made ginger creams and am baking double chocolate chip cookies. There’s dough in the fridge waiting to be baked into oatmeal raisin cookies. More cookies than we need, but I love baking! We’ll take them on our trip this week to share.

When Allie woke up from her nap she joined Mama in the kitchen to watch the baking and mixing. She likes watching but got quite worked up asking for a cookie. We gave her one but also some yogurt… but since she was very engrossed into the baking, Dada fed her the yogurt while she was standing on her stool watching Mama mix. It was some fun family time even if Dada was sitting on the floor!

I wish we could have taken a few pictures! It was so fun seeing Allie’s face as she watched the mixer go round and round.

The terrible twos are rearing their ugly head though and Allie was a bit too disruptive in the kitchen. To get Allie to come out to the living room, Dada asked Allie if she’d like to watch The Polar Express again. She’s just as engrossed in the movie again right now!

I’m loving the Christmas magic already. The rest of the week just holds more. Its so fun now that Allie is getting old enough to understand about Christmas and enjoy it!

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11 miles to go

I will make my goal, I think.

Unfortunately now I seem to have some kind of hip issue. I don’t know if it will derail my goal or not. I did what I was supposed to… came back slow with really low miles and not running two days in a row. But yet my hip hurts worse after yesterday’s run than it did after Thursday’s. I’ve been wearing my old running shoes so maybe thats the problem. The laces on my real running shoes are really short so I know they aren’t long enough to tie around my ankle brace. Or I suppose my hip could be my treadmill reaction that my shins were last year.

Its going to be a long winter. But the important thing is I only have 11 miles to my goal and I’m very sure I’m going to make it, probably with lots of help from my chiropractor.

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It snowed! I wish I’d had the camera to see Allie’s face when we opened up her curtains to show it to her. She kissed and hugged the window because she wanted to kiss and hug the snow!

These pictures sort of show how she liked seeing the snow!

Here she is trying to hug it! There wasn’t enough snow to play in, only about 2 inches or less, and we didn’t have time for it today anyway. We did see people sledding on the big Elver Park hill.

Today was a full day of Christmas shopping! Allie enjoyed it at first but she lost interest by the time we got to the mall. It was the fourth stop, and Mama and Dada were losing interest too! We went out to lunch at Applebee’s though and that perked all of us up! After lunch we went home so Allie could nap and then Mama went out for some more shopping. Its almost all done, just one more item needed! Thats somewhat strange for us since Christmas is still a week away!