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Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Blog Moving

We have moved our blog to elliottandholly.blogspot.com

Please check there for new posts.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Nearly There

I am officially 37 weeks pregnant, and I feel it! Ugg! I would LOVE to get a full night of sleep, though I know that's not going to happen any time soon. I would be thrilled if this baby Girl decided to make her appearance sooner, rather than later. I was 4 days early with Elliott, so maybe I'll be early again (crosses fingers). We are mostly ready for the new baby. I think the only thing really left to do is to put in the car seat. Elliott will be sharing his bedroom with her. We have rearranged his room to fit in the crib. I just realized I don't have any pictures, so I'll have to remedy that tomorrow. All the baby girl clothes have been washed, hung up and are waiting for her.

Elliott likes to tell me, "When the baby climbs out of your tummy you'll be able to snuggle with me ALL DAY LONG". Or, "make room for me in the reading chair". He has about 5 things that I'll be able to do with him once she arrives. Obviously, he doesn't quite understand that this little girl is going to be taking up a lot of that one on one time we have together. Though, I'll happily admit, I would love to be able to snuggle with him longer and more comfortably.

This past month has been busy. I finally cracked down on potty training. Elliott has been able to pee in the potty for a while. But, he never tells us when he has to go. It's very hit and miss, which is not fun. Over the past few weeks we are "undies only" at home and if we are going out for short trips. He has been doing really well, though still has the occasional accident. Going #2 is a whole different story. We're still working on it, some days we are successful others not so much. I hope that he is able to continue on this good streak and not have any regression when the baby arrives.

As a family we went to Enchanted Forest at the beginning of June. Dan and I had both been when we were kids. I think I was maybe 6 or 7 and I don't remember it well. Dan was older when he went and he LOVED it. Ever since my sisters had their kids he has been wanting to take someone there. Elliott had a great time. He isn't always the most adventurous kid, but he did well on the few kid rides he went on. He did the ferris wheel by himself (the picture we have makes it look like E is in jail, so I'm not going to post it). The kid bumber boats were a huge hit, he loved them!

This past week we went Strawberry picking with my sisters and all the cousins. I brought a camp chair so that I could sit and watch. Elliott wasn't the best strawberry picker. He mainly would pick 5 or 6 then dump them out, then eat them off the ground. Yum! All the kids had a good time and I got to sit with Baby Paige :)

I took about 8 cousin pictures and not one of them turned out good. Elliott was being a stinker and would not look at the camera. Actually, in most of them he's looking at Cameron and they both have their tongues out. Elliott has definitely mastered the art of selective hearing.

Paige :)

After strawberry picking we all went to Sarah's house to play and swim. Amy was nice enough to get in with the kids while Sarah, Paige and I sat the deck. I had E in his lifejacket to see if that would work for him. He wasn't totally stable and didn't seem to like it. Amy added to ring and he was off on his own! He happily kicked around the pool like this for a while. I mentioned above that he isn't always very adventurous. In the last week or so he's really started to try new things out, this being one. There is a great pool near our house, hopefully Dan and Elliott can go soon so that he can get more comfortable in the water. Because I taught lessons for years I have wanted to start him in lessons once he's potty trained and 3 years old. We'll have to go a few more times this summer so that he learns to like the water and no be afraid to get it on his face (as he sometimes is in the bathtub).

Tonight I tried out my domestic side and canned Strawberry Jam. Even though Elliott didn't actually get any strawberries I still bought some from the farm. The one jar that wasn't full enough to can I put in the fridge to eat right. Dan and I tried it out and both decided that unless we die tomorrow, I successfully canned Jam! :)

Later this summer I'll have to try different fruits.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

It's Been a Crazy Month!

Wow, where did this month go? We've been busy around here. Mostly trying our 2nd (or 3rd) round of potty training. Elliott is doing really well, though we're not there quite yet. We are much more successful with #1 than we are with #2....still working though. I'm hoping that he will be mostly trained by the time Baby #2 arrives.

Earlier in the month I had a baby shower and received tons of cute, frilly clothes. Combined with the clothes my sister, Sarah, is passing over to me we are well stocked for this little girl. I'm feeling huge, though I'm told that I actually look small. I'm surprised at how quickly the time seems to be going and how the due date is quickly approaching. I am hoping to have Elliott and Baby #2's bedroom all set up soon.

The most exciting part of this month has been our small house fire. On May 10th my sister, Sarah, came over for a visit and to drop off some baby supplies that Paige had outgrown. Elliott and Grace were playing together amazingly well. While they like each other, they don't always play nicely with the other. Sarah and I were thrilled and were trying to just let them play.... They were playing the "fire" game. This is something Elliott loves to play. He'll carry around this small hose (we have one indoor one and an outdoor one) and tell me things are on fire. I'll say, "Oh, go put it out...fast!" He'll run to whatever is on "fire" and pretend to squirt water on it, complete with sound effects. He used to play this game all the time - not so much since the real fire. Well, they were playing and the two of them came into Elliott's room to tell me that something was on fire in my bedroom. I assumed it was part of them game and told them, "great, put it out" and sent them on their way. They returned to my bedroom and played for a while longer. Not too long after that Sarah and I smelled smoke. We looked around Elliott's bedroom first, then went into the hallway. I saw smoke billowing out of my bedroom...scary!

I ran down the hall - while holding 4 month old Paige - and into my bedroom where I saw the curtains were on fire. I swear, all I could think about was to smother the flames somehow, not to get a fire extinguisher. Thankfully Sarah grabbed Paige and got Grace and Elliott out of the bedroom as she ran upstairs yelling for Dan to get the fire extinguisher. I managed to rip the curtains from our wall and onto the bed where I then attempted to put the flames out by smothering them with a pillow. Then I had to get outside and into some fresh air. Thankfully Dan had come downstairs and was about to spray our whole bed (and bedroom) with the fire extinguisher.

Thank goodness for home owners insurance because even though the fire was small it's been costly to clean up from. Rundown of ruined items: curtains, carpet, bedding, mattress. All of our clothes had the powder on them from the extinguisher. We got a new mattress (somehow our bed frame was unharmed) and all new bedding right away. Our clothes have all been sent to a specialty cleaners and will come back to us on Tuesday - we've been living with about 5 outfits each (Dan and I, not Elliott as his were fine) since the 10th. The insurance company had people come out to clean all the dust from the extinguisher. Our downstairs has never looked so good! It's amazing what 5 women can accomplish working for about 6+ hours straight! Carpets in the hallway were cleaned. Today the painters came and painted the two bedrooms, hallway and bathroom for us. The carpet in our bedroom will be replaced.

We are really thankful that it was such a small fire, it could have been so much worse. Thankfully Sarah and I were downstairs and smelled the smoke right away. I had thought we needed some detectors in our bedrooms, but hadn't even done anything about it. We now have one in each bedroom and an additional one upstairs. I'm looking forward to being able to have clothes again - though I am getting big and not a whole lot fits anymore. I've also decided to tackle some organizing/spring cleaning. Since we've had to move virtually everything out of the bedrooms I've realized just how much stuff we have. How did Dan and I have 8 giant garbage bags full of clothes (mostly mine, I admit it)? Goodwill will be getting some major donations from us in the near future. It will be good to get rid of what we don't need. I always have a fear (however irrational it really is) that I'll become a hoarder. So, this is good for me.

Here are two pictures, taken with my phone so that quality isn't the best. You can see the burned curtains and bedding. The white petals are from the neighbor cherry tree:

Dan and I also celebrated our 6th wedding anniversary! I can't believe it has been 6 years already. We took an overnight trip up to Mt. Hood, without Elliott, to get away. It was nice, especially as it was just a few days after fire. We both got full nights of sleep with a chance to sleep in...fabulous! We also spent last weekend with 14 of our friends on the Oregon Coast for our annual Beach Trip. We get lucky every year with good weather. Elliott and Dan flew a kite and they also went crabbing! I got to relax and hang out with girlfriends.

Here are a few other pictures. I figure since I don't blog too often I should make this a long one...

Elliott helping Dan play The Legend of Zelda on our origianl NES game system.

My sisters and I at the baby shower:

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Fully Fenced!!!

I'm so excited! Last weekend Dan was able to finish up the little fence and gate. Here are some pictures of the progress:

When it was finished Elliott looked up and said, "Oh no, now I can't get out without Mommy!" Exactly little bud, that's why we did this. He also told us that he doesn't like the gate. It is really nice to know that we can now be in our backyard and not have to constantly look up to see what/where Elliott is. We also got a new patio set, so now we can serve more than 2 people outside. We're moving up in the world!

Dan's next project (one of an endless list) is to build a little area for Elliott's castle play structure. We also need to get our garden planted as it's finally warming up enough. I'm hoping to get a lot done in our yard before baby #2 arrives because I have a sneaky feeling I won't want to be outside weeding, etc. post baby.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Photo Update

Here are some recent Elliott pictures:

Building Fences

We currently have a long, semi-fenced yard. There is a nice fence on one side where a new house was built. On the other side there was a busted chicken wire fence that sort of worked. But, it was also over-run with ivy. The back was semi-fenced with either chicken wire or a scary, rusty, poky broken wire fence. With our tax refund I told Dan that all I really wanted was to have a properly fenced in yard so that Elliott could go outside and I would feel safe not having to watch him the whole time. He's a runner - ie, he will get into the front yard and wander...not fun!

Here are some pictures that Dan took before we moved into the house, back in 2006:

The Monday after we got home from Denver Dan had scheduled a fencing company to come out and put in posts for the fence we are installing in our backyard. It was worth every penny spent to have these guys do the posts for us. It was cold and rainy, not fun building weather. They arrived at 8am and were done by noon! They installed all the posts and the two gates we asked for. They also delivered all the extra wood for rails and fence boards along with hardware.

That Saturday Dan recruited my dad, his dad and our good friend Brad to help him install the rails and boards. Being Oregon, it was wet, though not raining. Those poor guys were all coated in mud! (Dan's shoes are still out back as I don't know what do to with them). This is the end product, I'm so happy!!

Dan is working on building a small railing and gate that will close off the yard completely. Our garage is detached and behind the house on the side. There is about a 6 foot area that includes a stairway onto our patio and a super dangerous drop off to the patio (at least 3.5 feet down to concrete). Then we just have to bark dust and get some plants. Baby steps, but our backyard is finally starting to come together. I'll keep you updated on progress as things get better.

I can't thank Dan, Larry, Bob (aka my Dad) and Brad enough for all their hard work on a muddy day! The fence looks great!

Monday, March 21, 2011


Last Wednesday night we flew to Denver, CO to visit Dan's family there as well as attend the first MLS game for the Portland Timbers. This was the second flight for Elliott and Dan's first with both of us. Let me just say, it's a lot easier to go through the airport and plane ride with another person there helping. Elliott was really good the flight over, just busy. He was excited to run around in the Denver airport while we waited for our baggage. Then, even more excited to see Uncle Lee and Aunt Connie! He was amped up the entire ride back to their house and then some!

Our first full day was spent driving to Breckinridge to walk around the ski town. It was beautiful. Even though there was a lot of snow on the ground it wasn't really that cold, especially when the sun was shining on you.

Horses decked our for St. Patrick's Day in Breckinridge:

That night we went to Casa Bonita for dinner. Dan has been telling me about this restaurant since we met. He went when he was 15, I think, and loved it. There was a lot of talk from the Denver crew that the food was so terrible you can't even eat it - though we were told the sopaipillas were really good. I was starting to get a little worried about how bad it was going to be, I even suggested going elsewhere but Dan would have none of that. This place is like Disneyland! You wait in a winding line to even order, then another line to get your food, then another line to get seated. Connie asked that we be seated near the waterfall so that we could see the divers in action. The food wasn't great, I would rate it as low quality Mexican food, nothing to write home about. The sopaipillas were good though, really good! But, I'm pretty sure no one goes there for the food. There is so much to look at and watch. They have cliff divers, puppet shows, magic shows. Even little while they have a pinata for kids to smash. We went and Elliott really wanted to swing the bat. Thankfully another kid broke it open and the empl0yee said Elliott could have 1/2 of the pinata to take home. Connie even bought Elliott a little light up sword, he was in heaven! If you go to Denver and want to experience a restaurant like you've never seen before, go here.

On Friday we drove out to the Red Rocks Amphitheater. What an amazing place. It had snowed late Thursday night/Friday morning. There was snow on the mountains and it was gorgeous and sunny. We ran around and then ate lunch.

Dan and Uncle Lee:

Aunt Connie with Elliott:

Family Shot, Elliott not liking the sun:

That night Dan's cousins all came over to have dinner with us. It was really good to see all the family. Elliott loved playing with the twins, Hayden and Hunter (age 7) as well as Matthew and Cole (15 and 14, I think). I didn't take a single picture from here on out...

Dan and I went to the soccer game on Saturday afternoon. The Colorado Rapids fan section hosted some pre-game events which we attended for Dan's soccer blog. Elliott stayed with Connie and Lee. He was schedule to have his first sleepover party with Hayden and Hunter! The report we got was that the boys were up until 11:30pm! When Dan and I got home after midnight (we had met his cousin downtown Denver) the boys were all sound asleep. I really wish I had take a picture, it was so cute. Hayden and Hunter were so good with Elliott. I think it helped that they had to be in order to gain access to the iPad! :)

The soccer game was a lot of fun! The Timbers lost, 3-1, but it was very exciting to be part of their MLS debut and the huge crowd of Timbers fans (Timbers Army) that was there. Over 400 Timbers fans had purchased tickets!

Overall, we had a really good trip and it was great to see all the family. The weather was perfect the entire time, such a nice break from our constant rain.