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Monday, August 25, 2008

Daughter and Son

Things are mostly a blur from this week. For some reason I didn't take many pictures, so I have no prompts for my fuzzy mind. I know we watched a lot of Olympics! By the end I think we had burned out finally! Next up is Clemson football, hooray!

Rhianwen has been talking up a storm. So fast in fact, that we really can't follow anymore. At first I thought she was just talking gibberish, but then I noticed today that if I listened closely enough, she really was speaking words. Part of what makes it hard is that she will speak in paragraphs about totally unrelated things from one sentence to the next. She's also memorized a majority of the nursery rhymes that we read almost daily per her request. Thankfully I've memorized them long ago, so I don't even have to look at the words to read to her anymore. Nice! The following video is just one of the new rhymes she has picked up recently.

Alden is still gaining well (I can only thank the Lord for this blessing!). We have a program called Durham Connects that I think is really geared toward poor uninsured moms, but is offered to every mom. A nurse came for a house visit for free, did a free weight check, and gave us a great tote and free books, dipes, bath stuff etc. I felt a little bad taking it all, but I wasn't about to pass up a free weight check. He was 9 lb. 15 oz so still adding 8 oz or more per week. He's still a skinny little booger. We have his one month check up tomorrow, so we'll see how happy our Ped. is with his progress. Alden is getting a lot more energetic, kicking a lot and starting to talk a little. He's such a perfect little honey, except for on Saturday when I hope he did his growth spurt b/c all he wanted to do was eat.

Just one of the things Alden managed to do.

Reading Peter Rabbit to Alden.

We did manage to get out to playgroup this week and to a playground where Wally and I got to bump the volleyball while Rhainwen was entertained by a bunch of cute Latino kids playing with her shovel and pail in the sandbox.

All dressed up for church in a Pooh outfit from Great Uncle David and Elisabetta.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

A Visit from Some Uncles

Last week went by pretty quickly. We had a quick visit from Uncle Skipper and Uncle Christopher along with Grandma Nanny Kim much to Rhianwen's joy. Uncle Christopher treated us to some delicious Mexican take-out (a favorite in this fam, including Rhi). And we basically just talked and moved the huge cast-iron wood-stove out of the family room. Ha ha! Yes, well, the guys did anyway. Wally was disappointed that the guys weren't spending the night. Mostly b/c there were that many fewer projects he could get out of them ;0) Just kidding. He had to work and only got to see them at lunch.

Of course, Rhianwen took center stage by repeating half of what we said, running and chasing all around, and being her crazy high energy self.

On her palanquin surrounded by her attendants and body guards, Rhianwen peruses her subjects critically.

We did manage to get out to Rhi's friend's birthday party one night. It was at a playground, so bonus for her! She's continued to sing happy birthday to her friend almost every day since. The gift? Legos of course, Rhianwen's favorite.

With the birthday girl.

Things have settled pretty well here. Rhianwen has had fewer tantrums thanks to getting back to non-exciting mommyness. Although there are times when she wants mommy to "hold" her, and Rhi has then attempted to sit on Alden as mommy nurses him. This leads to mommy trying to ward Rhianwen off with an elbow while desperately trying to distract her by singing Bingo or asking her to get a book. Sigh. On that note, Alden has continued to gain a nice 1 oz./day. Keep it up big guy!

We've been immersed in the Olympics, and watching so many events (especially volleyball and equestrian) makes mommy long for some real activity. Many days I feel like I spend most of it sitting on the couch feeding Alden and reading or singing to Rhianwen. The times when I feel frustrated over this, I just try to remind myself that there really is nothing I'd rather do right now in my life and that no matter what I was doing, there would be something that was frustrating about it, so I'd might as well find the joy in everything that I do. It can still be hard though.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Week of Grandma Nanny Kim

The past week Grandma Nanny Kim spent with us. I think it was an eye-opening experience for Rhianwen. Nanny Kim brought imagination to a whole new level for her. Not only did every play person and stuffed animal get a name (or if they already had a name they got a new name), but also, the legos took on endless possibilities and drawing became a way to make chairs, food, roads etc. for the play people to use. I've tried to learn all of the names: Sammy, Billy, Doris, ummmm...there're more...Oh, like Rhianwen decided that her name is Frank. Also, much to Wally's dismay, Nanny Kim introduced a Richard Simmons exercise video to Rhianwen that she absolutely loved. She called it dancing.

Dancing to the Richard Simmons video.

Nanny Kim also did some amazing Cleopatricesce things with Rhi's hair-clips.

Alden enjoyed seeing Nanny Kim as well, although I think he wasn't quite sure what to make of her. Don't worry, Alden, no one does!

I don't know why she thought it was a good idea, but Rhi decided running around with a bag on her head was super fun. Even though it caused many falls (kitty bore the brunt of the one that came right after this picture). This is about the only way we can get videos of Rhianwen now...her head must be completely covered so she is totally unaware of our secret footage of her.

Mrs. Stoner had a very talented and kind friend who wanted to make a gift for the big sister. She made a beautiful crayon and paper carrying case that we all love.

Daddy took a day trip out to Mt. Airy to get a cheap riding lawn mower. So far he has had to replace the starter and tighten the blades. I think it still needs some repairs, but Rhianwen loves taking a spin around the yard on it.

Alden is doing well. He gained like a champ this past week. Let's hope he keeps it up/mommy can keep up with his needs! We're still using the shield as he still does his little creasing number if I don't. Of course, I obsess over every poop, pee, and feeding, and wonder if those little fingers are looking fatter or thinner over the period of the day. I know worrying never helps, but sometimes it is hard! Especially in the afternoon when he doesn't seem to sleep well and just likes to snack and snooze. Blah. Wally keeps saying I'll finally decide he's gotten enough to eat when he's 16 and huge. Ha! In the life of Alden, he really enjoys watching ceiling fans and clocks that have second hands. Just mesmerizing.

Rhianwen the little helper; Alden the little go-with-the-flow man.

Tonight during devotions Rhianwen was summarizing the story about the tabernacle for mommy. She said, "Jesus went to China." Hm. Interesting. I never got that out of the tabernacle accounts. Perhaps it has something to do with letting her watch a bunch of Olympics.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

One Week Down and Another to Go

Despite the fact that we were on our own this week, things went fairly well. Definitely better than expected. We had some friends help out with a few meals and babysitting which proved invaluable to our sanity. Thank you! Now, mom is here for the week. Hooray!

Alden gained much better this week even though we have the same issues. The LC has me on a shield for both sides because Alden seems to get more that way so I'm feeling a lot better too :) Hopefully it'll all pan out well eventually, but we can only take one day at a time. Alden had his first real bath with his big sister. Rhianwen had fun cleaning him and has named his bear-shaped bath sponge "Aldi-man's boat". Aldi-man is a nickname that Wally has been using with him and Rhianwen has of course begun using it. Pretty soon she will forget what his real name is! Alas, no pictures since it is close to impossible to maintain modesty with 2 kids in the tub.

Here he is all wrapped up in Grandmama's towel.

All clean; I love the soft fluffy clean hair.

We were looking at old pictures of Wally when he was a newborn. What do you think? Alden looks quite a bit like him we think. Especially the long skinny arms and legs.

Wally new to the world.

Long and skinny Wally.

Grandmama, Grandaddy, Aunt Clara, and Uncle Brooks made a pit-stop on their way to a wedding of Wally's cousin (we are so sad we had to miss it!). So, we had a quick photo-shoot before they were on their way. This marks the start of Alden's photo-prayer book (we have a "Who Loves Baby" photo-album that we put family pictures in and pray through during devotions).

Grandmama and Grandaddy. Alden LOVES looking at Grandmama.

Aunt Clara and Uncle Brooks.

Rhianwen has really come into a new phase of crazy toddlerhood recently...running, yelling, stomping. All just in time for a new baby that we are trying to get on a nice sleep schedule. Her favorite Bible song is "I Will Never March in the Infantry", and she can almost sing the whole thing! Wally has also introduced "Pharaoh, Pharaoh", one of my former favorite camp songs. It's so funny to hear Rhianwen sing, "Pharaoh, Baby!" She's even squirmy for book readings now. I've also introduced Sesame Street a couple of days a week which she has termed "Moosic" and she'll talk about the monsters singing.

Reading a Piglet book...Alden looks utterly disgusted.

This was mommy's and Uncle Christopher's toybox, and our favorite thing was to throw all the toys out and climb in it. Rhianwen is maintaining the tradition.

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