Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy Noon Year

It is hard to believe another year is down the tubes. The cliche about time flying is so true.
Here are some photos from last years "Noon" Years Eve. It was just Bill, the kids, and I for lunch at Dante. Nolan's surgery was drawing near and I just wanted it to be us.
This year we were joined by Nonny, Grandpa, Aunt Jan, & Uncle John at Paladar to celebrate the passing of an amazing year for Reagan and Nolan. The kids were angels through a two hour lunch and a good time was had by all!
In her party dress. Nolan had a bit of business to take care of before lunch.
Silly Uncle Johnny.
Happy New Year!!! Be safe and I hope 2009 treats you well.

Sunday, December 28, 2008


It has been a haze of wrapping paper, illness (all 4 of us at one point or another), visiting with family and friends, and fulfilling my wrapping paper obsession with some post-Christmas shopping. I got an amazing camera from Santa, so look for even better pictures soon.....once I figure out how to work it! Christmas Eve-Nolan & Timmy. Hanging out under the table. Like mother, like son. Nolan tried to make his way past Sadie to open her gifts. At least he was polite about it and said, "Excuse me, baby." Christmas morning, Nolan didn't like the tape being "stuck" to him. Ripping into the gifts! Christmas morning, playing at the new kitchen. Cat-zilla. Just look at the carnage. Reagan giving smooches in exchange for ice cream. Nolan loves to "doodle." Poor puffy sinus girl, doesn't even look like my sweetie. Future members of the Detroit Lean. Ha! I wish they could help! Reagan excited about her new video. Unwrapping Daddy's gift. What the day is all, friends, neighbors...... and food!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Yes They Are

Merry Christmas & Happy Chanukah!
Shelley, Billy, Reagan, Nolan, Chandler, Boxster, & Jeepster

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Just In Case There Was A Doubt......

Nolan does not like Santa! Breakfast with Santa might as well have been breakfast with Satan. Ignore the bags under my eyes, I'm sick (again) and not sleeping well. The toy making was fun. We hammered, drilled, painted, and glittered a cat for Reagan and a plane for Nolan. We also saw two new calves in the dairy barn. Reagan was mooing. Spruce 2 weeks old Daddy learned how much fun train tables are. I think Nolan will have to fight Daddy and Uncle Sam for the train table on Christmas day. choo-choo We've done lots of other stuff, but my computer has issues typing the letters "n, b, the question mark and the space." Cutting and pasting each of those takes a long time, so I'm not able to type quickly anymore :-(

Saturday, December 20, 2008


Every Saturday before Christmas Bill and Sam head to the range, which is followed by lunch at Stevenson's, and then an afternoon of drinking. The "rule" is they can't leave the bar until it is dark (which these days is about 4pm!) A few years back Deb and I were allowed to join in, and last year marked the first year that the babies got to partake. 2007-Reagan 2007 Nolan In 2006 Deb and I started our own tradition of enjoying a Stevenson's milkshake. Made on one of those old-fashioned stick mixers. It was so good. The babies made me do it that year, I was out of the first trimester and ready for cravings! Last year I figured the babies needed a taste of the milkshake their Mommy craved so Deb and I got them again. We WOULD have gotten them again today, had the mixer not been broken!! Reagan sharing her grilled cheese with Daddy. Now I sit here, while Bill and Sam are enjoying their afternoon at the bar and all I am doing is craving a stupid milkshake! So much for tradition. Bah-humbug!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

My Dad

I'm having a lot of memories of my Dad lately. Everywhere I turn there is something that reminds of him. I looked in the rear view mirror today and Nolan's winter hat was sitting way up high on his head, just like my Dad used to wear it. That is where it started. When the kids went to nap I put a CD of Christmas carols on and "Hark, The Herald Angels Sing" came on. I thought back to all the years my Mom made my Dad go to church with us on Christmas Eve. He usually would stop at Beanie's for a few drinks on his way home from working 1/2 day. Back then, machine shops had lots of work and put in time on holidays often. Anyway, he'd have his beers and chili and come home a little looped. He would begrudgingly get dressed up for church in his best sweater and off we would go. He would sing, but he would change the words to Hark, the Hairy Angels Sing and such. He had such a nice voice. I wish he would have sung more often. I wish he was here to sing to my kids.
He loved Karen Carpenter's voice and the song with the line, "I've just one wish on this Christmas Eve, I wish I were with you." Every Christmas Eve since my Dad has passed (9 Christmases this year) I wake up with that song in my head. I guess he is here with me in spirit. I hope it is there again next week.
The night my Dad died Bill and I were driving home from my parents house after the funeral home had come to take him away. It was late, maybe 2 or 3am, I don't remember exactly. We stopped for a light on Lakeshore Blvd. and out of nowhere a huge bird starts walking across the street. It stopped when it got in front of our car and looked at me for a really long time. I can remember Bill saying something like "What the hell" and I just calmly said "its my Dad." I'm sure that he was coming to say goodbye since I wasn't with him when he passed. He has left me lots of bird feathers over the years, in places you wouldn't expect to find them.... under the covers of my bed (no, we don't have feather pillows or quilts), in my car, at work, etc. It always seemed to happen at time when I needed them most, when I needed to know that he was still with me and that he knew I missed him more than I ever thought possible. Today I was cleaning the kids high chairs and there was a feather under the chairs.
Thanks Dad. I needed that.

One More Time....

Nope. Still don't like him.
Reagan gets a 9.8 for the dismount.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

What They Have Been Up To......

Reagan and Nolan have been doing some pretty funny stuff lately, and stuff that is pretty advanced for 19 month olds in my opinion. (I haven't consulted with Dr. Spock yet though.) Reagan is very repetitive. She says the same things every time we drive by certain things. She yells GEESE when we drive by the school because in warmer weather that is where the geese congregate. When we get to the river she yells BOATS and now that winter is here, she adds, NIGHT-NIGHT and COVERED UP because once I told her the boats were out of the water so they could go to sleep for the winter. Nolan loves to sing. After hearing a tune a couple of times he will try to recreate it. He knows Twinkle, Twinkle and for the words he can't get out he just mumbles to the tune. He also tries Itsy Bitsy, The Backyardigans theme song, Old MacDonald, and many others. I was getting him dressed this morning and I asked him to sing me a song. I thought for sure it was going to be Twinkle, Twinkle instead he made up a song about Cookies. Cookies, cookies, cookies,mmmm. They both have gone through phases of being obsessed with certain books. Nolan could not get enough of The Very Hugry Caterpillar a couple of weeks ago. Reagan's current fave is The Three Bears. We have to read it every night. This morning she brought it down to breakfast and read it while eating. She was saying Papa Bear, baby, chair, bed as she turned the pages. Now that the Christmas tree has gone up, this has opened a whole new world of opportunity for Reagan and Nolan to do things they shouldn't do. We had to put the Berlin Wall around the tree, but they can still just barely reach it so we've undecorated the parts they can reach....or so I thought. This morning I looked over and there was Nolan with a long line of garland being taken off the tree. I asked him what he was doing and he quickly tried to throw it back over the gate and shove it on the tree. His answer to me was "I see you." Reagan responded "Time out." Guess they get the connection of what is wrong and what will land them in time out. Not that it matters! We also acquired the Elf On A Shelf this year and have had a good time sending him off to the North Pole to chat with Santa every night and then put him in a different spot every morning. Somedays they look for him on their own and others I ask them where he is. So far, they have found him every morning, and yell ELF, ELF, ELF when they see him. Last night the kids were watching The Backyardigans (surprise!) and when Nolan turned around from the TV to go sit in his rocking chair, it was over turned (thanks to Reagan) and he looked at me and said "What happened?" His other favorite thing to say is "Why?" or "Oh Boy." Reagan is very good with directions and knows the routes to our usual spots, like the Y. Yesterday morning we were going to BJ's which is just beyond the Y and she got very upset that we were not going swimming. I explained to her that we had swimming class that night and would be coming back after she napped and had dinner. I was sure she was going to forget and as the day went on and got colder we decided not to go. Well, Reagan didn't know that and as soon as she sat down to eat dinner she looked at me and said "Swimming?" I guess if I'm going to make promises I must keep them because my 19 month old is going to hold me to it. Bill has a memory of an elephant so I guess she gets it from him. I just wasn't sure that was entirely normal for a 19 month old?!?

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Dear Reagan

Dear Reagan, You are so much fun. You laugh and giggle, you joke around and find yourself very funny. You also love me more than anyone else at this moment. I'm fully aware that can and will change and you'll have your time at being a complete Daddy's girl, but for now it is all about "Mommy, Mommy, Mommy" for you. That is just fine with me. Tonight you were on the floor doing flips and acting goofy and I couldn't resist getting on the floor with you and making raspberries on your belly as you laughed and pointed out your belly button. It is a big outie (thanks to a small hernia) and you are very proud of it. Of course, the raspberries made you laugh and we played kissing monster and then you grabbed my hair as it hung down in my face and tickled yours and you said "nice" as you petted me like you do to the cats. After we collapsed from the laughter you snuggled up next to me on the floor, in front of the Christmas tree. We were spooning and you grabbed my hand and put your head into it and said "awwwww." You held onto my hand for a while and watched The Backyardigans. I just put my chin on the top of your head and stared at the tree until the lights became blurry from the tears I could not hold back. Of course, being the pistol that you are, that moment could not last very long. You pulled your feet into my face and yelled "P.U." Yes, the stinky feet game you so love to play. You even hold up flowers to your scrunched up little nose of yours and say P.U. Reagan, thank you for being my girl. Thank you for this memory. I will think of it every time I look at the Christmas tree. Thank you for making me laugh and shake my head in disbelief daily because you are so smart. Thank you for being ornery and sweet all at the same. Thank you for making my night. My Christmas. My year. My life. I love you bunny, Mommy

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Over Gumdrop Mountain And Through Lollipop Forest

How many of you remember playing Candyland as a child or with your own children? I'm betting everyone's hand is in the air, right? I loved Candyland when I was a kid. I wanted to jump into the board game and float on a creamsicle and lick lollipops in the molasses swamp.
Hmm....maybe this explains my fascination with Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.
Anyway, Grammy, Aunt Deb, and I took the kids to the annual Candyland holiday display at our local Metroparks. Can I just say again how awesome the Metroparks system is in our area! The kids love their story programs and now this. Reagan insisted on wearing her "packpack" It was OK, because for the first time in 19months, I didn't have to hold everything, she carried a lot of stuff for me! On the way in with Grammy. I wish I could have caught the wonder in their eyes when they first walked in.
Nolan and Aunt Deb talking about the fact that those are not real candy canes.
Nolan had to touch E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G. Even tried to taste some of it. Reagan ran laps around the place. Pointing to things and saying what they were, even telling other kids along the way about the ice cream cones and suckers.
hmmm...just a little touch here..... oh boy (his newest favorite saying) a heart! this glass ornament sure is pretty! Reagan ran laps in the ice cream floats,while Nolan tried to get in the ice cream floats!
Gotta take one of me every once in a while, just to prove I'm there!
trying to take off with a lollipop After the trip around Candyland, we played in the other areas of the nature center with a train table, phone, and fake food. Santa made a good call in letting me know he got the kids a train table. Nolan sat and played nicely for a long time while Reagan made two boys (older than her) cry by taking away their train cars. She is such a bully strong-willed child. It is something we work on everyday. At least as she rips something from Nolan's hand, she now yells "share, share, share" and then "thank you." Although he finely turned it around today in the bathtub and did the "share, share, share" routine with her..... and won. A small victory for the boy.
Talking over the days events.
We even saw some well camouflaged wildlife.