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Thursday, October 30, 2008

A New Uncle!

We have a new uncle in the family. Uncle Brooks. Yes, we have referred to him as Uncle before, but he now officially has earned the title by marrying Aunt Clara. It was a fabulous wedding with both sides of the family participating in the processional (I'm not sure how many people total that was but probably close to 100!!!). Surprisingly, it didn't take that long. We had talked the wedding up big to Rhianwen and decided to see how she would do watching. Well, we made our entrance during the processional right before Aunt Clara came down the aisle, and Rhianwen went bee-bopping along to the music out-pacing mommy and daddy and overtaking a good part of the family who had gone before us. Uncle Averett snagged her, but then she didn't want to be stopped. She had an eye on the musicians on the stage. So she got mad. Then Wally picked her up and carried her the rest of the way down the aisle. We got to our seats and Rhianwen wouldn't stop crying, so Wally took her to the side at which point she said very loudly, "I NO LIKE IT!!!!" She had been saying this about the fellowship hall in visits previous days when we were making preparations, but we thought she had gotten over it. I guess not! So she ended up in nursery. Oh well.

See Rhianwen and Uncle Averrett goofing off...oh, and the beautiful bride, doesn't she look classy?

Yes, I stole these pictures from a cd given to us, I hope that was ok...I didn't take any wedding pictures because I had my hands full!

We had a great time with family. It was actually quite relaxing for me because Rhainwen was entertained 24/7 which meant I only had to look after Alden. It made me remember how much easier it is having only one child!

Wrestling with Bear who was kicked out of Uncle Brooks' condo and adopted by Grandmama...yes, Alden has purple lips, gentian violet...anti-thrush stuff.

Poor Aldi-man had purple lips for the wedding too. Some people knew immediately why and others were wondering what on earth he had been eating. Finally it faded by about the time we left.

Cuddle time with Grandmama.

Rhianwen also sat through an ENTIRE church service at Wally's dad's church! And Grandaddy wasn't even preaching! For some reason Rhi has an aversion to their nursery, so we decided to try her out in service. She did a GREAT job, although it looked like a mini-tornado had flown through the front pew by the time she was done with all the papers and crayons we provided for her. We tried drawing stuff from the sermon, but she didn't really seem to get the connection. For example, I drew a picture of Jesus holding a heart, and Rhianwen insisted it was Grandma Nanny Kim (who knew Grandma Nanny Kim had a beard and crown?). She made it almost to the very end, but bumped her head on the pew and dissolved into tears. Daddy had to take her out, and as she was leaving she loudly proclaimed, "Want to go BYE-BYE!!!". I just tried to remind myself that she has only just turned 2, not 4, and she was exceptional for this age! This was also the first time that Rhianwen got to meet a large part of the extended family. Boy did she have a blast!!! She just LOVES attention.

This is what happened when we got back to our house:

This is the FIRST time she has EVER just zonked out on the floor or anywhere for that matter! I was shocked. Of course, it didn't last. I carried her back to her bed where she immediately woke up and wanted a story before nap.

Alden has been producing some serious drool and seems to want to gnaw on anything that comes close to his mouth. I guess he may follow in his sister's footsteps and get his first teeth by 4 months...yikes! Hm, Rhi's shirt looks kinda drooly too...she is getting molars, but I think that must be water.

Graduating to the exersaucer is great!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Conversations with a 2 year and 2+ month old

Well, I know I haven't posted in a while. Things have been so crazy around here trying to figure out what is going on with mommy and Alden and then with the rest of life in general. We're still not out of the woods yet. We may not get there until I quit. But I'm giving it a few more weeks at least until the end of my treatment.

We had high hopes for the Clemson vs. Wake Forest Game...

On the edge of their seats.

"I LOVE being a Tiger!"

BUT here is what we felt after it:

"I'm stunned. Completely stunned."

Daddy's been working more on the treehouse for Rhianwen and even has let Rhi pitch in...scary thing for mommy.

Rhianwen has been so verbal recently. Talking in paragraphs with complete sentences. It's been amazing to hear her! And she remembers so much. We were talking about getting Alden baptized, and she piped up and told us the story about Jesus' baptism. She even remembered that John the Baptist baptized Jesus and that a bird came down from heaven!

Then on the other hand, her memory isn't perfect. Like the one time we asked her what Jesus said to the disciples. Here was her answer: "Jesus said follow me and I will make you a woman".

"Well, who wouldn't want to be a woman?"

I think she was thinking about the prayer we always pray for her at bedtime where we ask God to make Rhianwen into a woman of God. Somehow I think Jesus would have had a smaller following if he had listened to Rhianwen :)

She's also started acting out nursery rhymes like See-Saw Margery Daw. Since she doesn't have a see-saw in the house, she sits on the end of her bed and says it while rocking back and forth. It makes me nervous of course! An embarrassing thing that she does is repeat your conversations. I'll be on the phone trying to talk and will hear a little echo behind me, with the ums and laughs included...makes me realize how silly I sound :)

Alden has become much more verbal. Goo-ing, Coo-ing, and razzing. It's SO cute to see him smile at you and carry on a whole conversation in baby talk. He's also learned that he can affect change in this area. If he wants a conversation, he'll fuss a bit until you turn around and start talking to him. Then he'll smile and start cooing. If you turn back around, he'll start fussing again as if to say, "Hey, I wasn't finished with this conversation!". I think he's an extrovert. He's also realized that his hands can grab and move things. Here he is in his swing grabbing at the twirly toy and mirror.

"I'm beginning my space training early. Multi-tasking is my forte!"

I Spy is the story of the week...a book from Great Aunt BeBe and Great Uncle Keith (who I have not thanked yet...sorry!).

HAPPY BIRTHDAY Grandaddy and Uncle Christopher! My grandparents celebrated their 59th wedding anniversary this week too. And I thought our 7 years made us an old married couple!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Happy 2nd Birthday Rhianwen!!!

Can you believe it? Rhianwen is 2! We kept asking her how old she was, and she kept saying 4. I guess that's always how it is when you are young...wishing you were just a bit older. How times change :) Wally and I decorated the dining room the night before her birthday. It was so fun. We even used a funny frog vase that Grandmama gave as a bed present (bed presents are gifts that guests of the T household are given...they just are on the bed where you're going to sleep...very cool idea that I would love to replicate, however I just haven't been able to get it together enough to be able to do it! I'm glad if I can have the house semi-ready before the guests arrive).

We came into Rhianwen's bedroom on her birthday morning and sang to her. She hopped down out of bed and went straight to the family room where we said she could open some presents. Her back was to the dining room, but when she started to go through the family room door, she must have seen something out of her peripheral vision that made her do a double take and look at the dining room. So fun to see her take it all in! She's so serious when she does.

A puppy-dog card from Uncle Robeson and Aunt Natalie...I'm showing it b/c when Mr. Doug from church asked Rhianwen what she got for her birthday, she said, "A doggie." So funny. They also gave her cool finger paints that work only on special paper and some crayons for drawing on the glass and tile of the bathroom. We let her hop in the tub to try them out, and later she had a bath with her good friend Phoebe and got to play with them with her.

We had a huge gift wrapped for her in the family room that we said had to wait until Grandma Nanny Kim and Grandpa and Phoebe were here. She was so good about waiting. Of course, a trip to Pullen Park helped get her mind off of it. This is what we did last year for her birthday, and we may just make it a tradition until she outgrows it. Again, she was very serious the whole time, but really looooved the carousel.

We let Alden try it out too. He liked it up until just before the end when I guess it must have gone a little too fast for him. Grandma Nanny Kim had started the ride standing next to Rhianwen's horse, but as the carousel got faster and faster, she was gripping Rhi's horse and laughing because she couldn't keep her balance. She finally fell into the seat next to me. There's always more excitement when Nanny Kim is around.

Rhi also enjoyed the boat ride:

So serious!!!

And a train ride (she loved the whistle and the tunnel). There's a smile...maybe!

When we got home, it was naps for everyone, then Phoebe's arrival, gifts, tacos and cheesecake. We gave Rhi a musical card. Here was what her expression was like for like 5 min.

Notice the cute birthday clown outfit. I've just been waiting for this day so she could wear it :)

She finally got to open her big gift (a Plan Toys Chalet Dollhouse from Grandmama, Grandaddy, Grandma Nanny Kim, Grandpa, and us). What do you think was the first thing she said? "Lamp!" (it was next to the mommy and daddy doll's bed). Aunt Clara and Uncle Brooks gave her a nursery with the baby for the house (she loves it)...and said, "Mommy nursing baby." Ha. Uncle Christopher gave the mommy, daddy, brother, and sister dolls, and pets. It's great b/c I found a book called The Cottage at the End of the Lane that is about a wooden doll who is looking for a home and then a bunny comes and asks if he can stay. So that dovetailed nicely. And Uncle Averett gave a swing-set, see-saw, and sandbox for the dolls to play on. She's having a blast with all of it! Wally is working on a cool treehouse (a real one for Rhianwen to play in) outside. So far he's got a pretty good platform and a neat bench tucked into the crook of the tree.

Rhianwen even said to Phoebe about one of her gifts, "Here Phoebe, help open it." and then proceeded to explain how it's wrapped, and you open it, and there's a gift inside. Phoebe's birthday is coming up soon, so it's good that she got that education.

When it was time for candles and cake, there was no confusion about what needed to be done! Wally hadn't even set the cake down in front of Rhianwen before she had blown the candles out (without any prompting)! One puff is all it took. We were all so surprised!

The cake before it entered Rhianwen's line of fire.

The cake afterwards. Phoebe took a millisecond longer to devour her piece. They both asked for and got seconds. Good thing we started with slivers.

Phoebe gave Rhi play-doh, and they got down to business after they found out they couldn't have more cheesecake. Alden had quite a time looking on.

In the past year, Rhianwen has really developed her ability to communicate. Speaking in full sentences and using the correct pronouns. It's amazing. She also enjoys much longer stories. I just can't believe it's only been 2 years. In some ways, I feel like I've been a mommy for a long long time (good and bad). It certainly is a huge sacrifice of your own personal freedom, and often doesn't seem very rewarding especially after you've spent hours playing and reading word books and then are thanked by a big tantrum and puddles of tears right before bed. But, then there are those times when you see her dancing with a huge smile on her face and a light in her eyes or when she is quietly absorbed in her own books totally unaware of anything around her or when she is telling her brother, "See?" and expounding on something she just has to have him know or when we wake to her singing Jesus Loves Me. Those are the times when I think, "Wow, thank you God for such a blessing." I've failed even more this year at being the calm patient loving example I should be. It's hard to wisely guide Rhianwen's growing independence and sense of adventure. What will this next year bring? .... Candyland if Daddy has anything to do with it... HA! I can't be too serious, you know.

On a side-note, Alden is such a happy little man :) 75th percentile for weight and 94th for length (his 2 month with sad immunizations was this past week as well). I can't believe he doesn't go back until he is 4 months old! He's having to take yucky meds for possible thrush (though we don't think he has it, my LC thinks I have an infection and just wants to make sure we don't just pass it back and forth). I thiiiiink, I'm finally getting better, but it's too early to tell. BF is going way better just in the past few days after a little more than a week without the shield. Thank the Lord! Maybe just maybe we may be able to do this. I'll be shocked. I just am SO thankful for my LC.

If Rhianwen could see you, she'd say, "Goodnight." Kiss you on the cheek and pat you somewhere on the head.

Story of the week: Cinderella (a book she got from us for her birthday). Why do all little girls seem to like that story?

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