Christmas Letter 2011

Dear Friends and Family,

We hope this letter finds you well. We have had a fun-filled and busy year with much energy devoted to raising our two beautiful daughters, Kaelyn (who turned 4 in August) and Evie (who turned 2 in June). Some highlights for the girls were their first trip to the circus, a new trampoline in the backyard, a big girl bed for Evie that was hand-made by Papa, and their first weekend alone at a grandparents’ house.

Kaelyn is in her second year of preschool and has really been getting interested in drawing and coloring activities as well as telling jokes (โ€œMooโ€-related cow jokes are her specialty). Evie thinks she should be in preschool too and is definitely the nurturer of the family, always carrying and taking care of her baby dolls.

Leigh Ann continues to be a full-time, stay-at-home Mom, but also started doing some part-time, work-from-home marketing for a friend’s website, MealBaby.com. She continues to be addicted to running, completing her second half-marathon this spring in Raleigh and then her first full marathon at the Outer Banks in November. We were all so proud of her and several times since, the girls will run through the house doing their own โ€œmarathonsโ€ like Mommy. Leigh Ann also got a Mommy break a couple of times to go out of town while Matt watched the girls for the weekend. She visited her brother in Charlottesville, VA and went to a Beth Moore conference in Charlotte. Leigh Ann also finds time to do volunteer events like organizing some summer activities for kids at the Durham Rescue Mission and a Fun Run for Charity for the girls’ friends.

Matt’s paragraph reads about the same as it has the past several years (plays some ultimate Frisbee, does some gym and running non-superhuman distances, blah, blah, blah). He did decide to leave Cisco and take a new job at NetApp this December. It is still doing software development, which he loves, but working with different technologies.

Our larger family had several changes. Kaelyn and Evie got their first cousin when Lila was born to Eric and Lisa in February. They got a new aunt when Jared got married to Jenna in July. Also, they lost their first living great-grandparent when Grandma Miller passed away in August at the age of 91.

Lastly, we were blessed to go on several trips this year. First, there was Ohio over Memorial Day to meet Lila. Then, we went to Virginia for Jared’s wedding followed by a beach trip to Oak Island with both grandparents. We spent Thanksgiving in South Carolina with Leigh Ann’s parents and will go to Ohio again for Christmas to see Matt’s family.

We pray you have a blessed and joyful 2012!

Love,

Matt, Leigh Ann, Kaelyn, and Evie

Fun Run

I’m copying this blog I wrote for the MealBaby blog here for you to enjoy too. ๐Ÿ™‚

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I am a runner and I love that my children seem to love running as well. They will put on a watch and run around the house as if they are running a race. Sometimes theyโ€™ll even put a baby doll in the toy stroller and take their โ€œjogging strollerโ€ too. Anytime my hubby or I participate in a race our girls always enjoy doing the โ€œfun runโ€ for kids (which most races usually have as part of the event).

Over Thanksgiving vacation I was having a discussion with my 4-year-old and we came up with the idea to create our very own Fun Run for all of our friends. As the idea evolved we decided weโ€™d ask our friends to bring a toy to donate to charity as their entrance fee for the race.

Today was the big day and about 20 of our little friends came out to a local park to run a lap (or several laps for some of the kids who were *really* enjoying it) on a paved trail that encircles the playground. We collected around 30 books, toys, and games that we are donating to a local charity just in time for Christmas!

We served cut up fruit, bottled water, and of course some cookies to all of the runners. And I just love the little โ€œribbonsโ€ we handed out to all of the finishers.

I am so thankful for all of our friends who came to participate. I loved having this opportunity to share the joy of running and exercise with my kids and their friends, and I especially loved making it all be about loving on other people and giving to others.

Halloween Montage

The girls had several opportunities to dress-up this year for Halloween festivities. For each event they picked an outfit out of their dress-up box so we had many different costumes this year. Why pick just one when you can be something different every day?

The first day was a festival at Matt’s work. I forgot to get a good picture of the whole costume, but I did get these pictures of their face paintings. This day Kaelyn was Rapunzel and Evie was Abby Cadabby.

The next day Kaelyn got to dress up for school and she was Abby Cadabby. Evie dressed up as a super cute 2-year-old this day. ๐Ÿ™‚

The next day we had a playdate with some neighborhood friends and both girls dressed up like puppy dogs. Their names were “Rock-o” and “Peekos.” (Can you tell who is who??)

And finally, on actual Halloween night, we had a Princess Tiana and a repeat appearance from Peekos the puppy dog. (You should have seen that little puppy tail wagging up to all the houses collecting candy!!)

When You Wish Upon A Star

Bedtime conversation with Kaelyn:

“Mommy, I wish a wishing star would go by so that I could wish for these things: I wish I could tie ribbons, I wish I could live at Caroline’s house, I wish I could have all the other princess dresses, and I wish I could stand on top of the barn.”

One Year!

Evie’s birthday is still a couple of days away, but I thought it was close enough to go ahead and wish her happy birthday here on the blog! This year has been very busy and gone by so fast – I can’t believe my little baby is a year already (sniff, sniff).

We had Evie’s 1st birthday party (ladybug theme) this past Sunday and I think she throughly enjoyed it (especially the cake smashing part). Here’s proof:



At one year Evie is saying these words:
uh-oh, ball, book, bird, baby, bye bye, Kaelyn (“Kay”), mama, dada, papa

She also does the baby sign for “milk.”

Crawling is still her main form of transportation, but her walking has really taken off the past couple of weeks. She’s been taking one or two steps for a while now, but lately she has gotten more into walking across the room. I think it’s only a matter of days before she is walking full time.

She LOVES her big sister, playing outside (particularly the water table and sandbox), and being in the pool. She is amazing at being able to entertain herself. (Maybe it’s a 2nd child ability??) She especially loves whenever she has a few minutes of playtime alone in the playroom without big sister coming in to take her toys away. ๐Ÿ™‚

I have to watch her because she has gotten into the habit of climbing on things and then standing up on top, for example: Kaelyn’s little rocking chair and the kiddie table. She also loves climbing the stairs.



Lately she is really starting to exert herself more and will be sure (with very loud noises and points) to let you know what she wants. If she doesn’t get what she wants she throws a little baby temper tantrum. She has already had to sit in time out several times. ๐Ÿ™‚

Speaking of pointing, I love it when that little tiny pointer finger starts pointing at stuff. It’s usually pointing to whatever she wants, but also she will point up in the sky at the sound of an airplane and things like that. It’s just such a sweet little finger.

She loves music and will dance whenever she hears any. She has the funniest facial expressions and the biggest grin that will just make your heart melt. One of my favorite faces is when she grins from ear to ear and scrunches up her little nose and squints her big, brown eyes (sigh).

Evie Wren, Mommy loves you more than you can ever know! I love your determination, your charm, your curiosity, and your sunshiny personality. You have already brought so much joy to me, daddy, and Kaelyn. We are so blessed to have you! Happy Birthday sweet one!



February Fun

Enjoying a pleasant February afternoon in North Carolina with a walk to the neighborhood playground (and it was Evie’s first wagon ride)…





Jumping on the Potty Train

Many months ago Kaelyn seemed interested in the potty. I bought all the potty gear and let her go when she wanted. I never really “trained” or pushed the issue. Honestly I think *I* was not ready. I was just too busy either being pregnant or taking care of a newborn to also think about taking her to the potty every few minutes or cleaning up accidents.

Then we hit another phase when Kaelyn lost all interest in the potty. She would scream “NO – DIAPER, DIAPER!” if I suggested the idea of wearing panties. I didn’t stress about it. We have no deadline, so I figured I would just wait until she was ready to start working on it again. There was no sense in stressing us both out.

Then this past weekend she seemed interested to go on the potty. I had been thinking that I would try working on it again right after the New Year, but since she showed interest I just went with it. That was Sunday and now she’s on her 4th day of wearing panties (except for sleep times)! Yippy!

She has had a few accidents, but really I think she is doing very well. At this point she still doesn’t usually tell me when she has to go – it’s more of me putting her on the potty every hour or so and getting her to go. But, over these past few days I think she has learned to control it and will hold it until I put her on the potty to go. She hasn’t had any pee pee accidents the past two days, only one poop accident each day.

Last weekend when we were talking about using the potty she told me she was “scared to have an accident.” I think that’s why she wanted to wear diapers because she knew she might have an accident in panties. I don’t know if she just didn’t like the feeling or if it embarrassed her, but clearly she didn’t want to have accidents. She even comments on one time a while back when one of her little friends was here and she had an accident in our play room. She clearly remembered that and didn’t like the thoughts of having one herself.

I started a little reward chart to help encourage her even more. I bought Thomas the Train stickers (which she LOVES) and then I found this train potty chart online. The chart is hanging on the bathroom door and every time she goes potty she gets a sticker to add to the chart (1 sticker for pee pee and 2 stickers for poo). When she reaches the end of the track she gets a sucker.

This morning she completed her first track and she was over joyed to get the sucker that she worked so hard for!

I think there has definitely been improvement everyday and I am looking forward to when this is more a natural part of her day. I have stressed about this in my mind for a long time, but she is doing a great job. Also I should mention that Evie is such a supportive little sister – she is always very content to play with toys while I spend a lot of time taking Kaelyn back and forth to the potty. I am so proud of both my girls!

Here is Kaelyn’s first potty chart which she worked so hard on completing:
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Here is the new chart we started today with the new sucker she is working towards:
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Evie’s Birth Story

Another friend of mine just wrote up her new little baby’s birth story and it reminded me that I never wrote up Evie’s story yet. Better late than never!

Evie’s birth was actually very, very similar to my birth with Kaelyn. My pregnancy with Evie was pretty much the same too except I didn’t have anemia this time. The doctor figured I’d need to schedule another induction so we went ahead and picked the date of June 4th since it worked for everyone’s schedule. At first I didn’t really like the idea of picking the birth date like that based around schedules, but it all worked out really well in the end. It was helpful especially because our family could plan when to come to town so that they could take care of Kaelyn for us while I was in the hospital. (Just an FYI – my due date was originally June 6.)

So around 6:30am on Thursday, June 4th I headed to the hospital along with Matt and my mom. My dad and brother stayed at home to take care of Kaelyn. They started my pitocin around 8:00am and the contractions started kicking right in. It was about 2 hours later before I had dilated enough (I think to around a 2) for them to break my water. Doctor broke my water around 10:00am and said if I wanted an epidural I could go ahead and order that so I did. I knew after my birth experience with Kaelyn that I was definitely going to get the epidural. I spent all morning just getting up and down going to the bathroom. I think I had to go a lot because they were also pumping me with fluids and I remember that i just felt better to sit on the toilet than to lay in the bed. That pitocin really brings the contractions on fast!

Then around 11:00am the doctor came in to give me the epidural. It was good timing too because my contractions had just started to get more intense. I had to stay in bed after that and I felt totally relaxed so I just took it easy and kind of dozed in and out of sleep.

Around 1:30 I remember feeling a lot of pressure every time I had a contraction. It wasn’t really pain since I had the epidural, but there was definitely a lot of pressure. I told the nurse when she came in to check on me the next time. She didn’t seem to think much of it and said she would check me during her next visit in another 15 minutes or so. Right as she was about to leave the room I had another contraction and I told her again how much pressure there was and that I really felt like I needed to push. She decided to go ahead and check me and sure enough I was a 10 already!! This was around 2:00 or 2:15.

I think the nurse was totally shocked. Evie’s head was *right* there. She told me to hold on and not push while she scrambled to call the doctor and everyone else in. As soon as the doctor came in and let me push Evie popped out! It literally only took one big push and Evie was out at 2:27pm. She weighed 6lbs 15oz and was 20 inches long.

She was perfectly healthy and beautiful! My first words were, “She looks just like Kaelyn!” She was a little bit cold so they had to warm her up under the lights for a few minutes which she really seemed to enjoy. She had the same hair that Kaelyn had at birth and weighed just a few ounces less (probably due to the fact that Kaelyn was born over a week late). Both girls were delivered by the same doctor too which I was happy about.

(One major difference between this birth was that with Kaelyn my water seemed to gush the entire day every time I had a contraction. It didn’t do that at all this time which was so much nicer not to be soaking my bed linens every few minutes.)

Mom cut Evie’s umbilical cord just like she did with Kaelyn. Dad, Jared, and Kaelyn got to come in the room just a few minutes after Evie arrived to meet her for the first time.

I still had some tearing like I did the first time, but other than that it was a pretty easy experience as far as birthing babies go. ๐Ÿ™‚

A couple of pictures from right after the birth…

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Fall Fun

Matt has had a couple of days off of work this week (hooray!!). On Thursday just the 4 of us went to the Durham Museum of Life and Science which is always a fun day. Kaelyn loves visiting the new dinosaur exhibit there and seeing the bugs. The new surprise this visit was that Kaelyn didn’t like the butterflies. I’m not sure why since she normally LOVES them…just another 2-year-old phase I suppose.

PapPap has been here all week visiting and doing some work on his new business. On Friday we also picked up Nana from the airport who is visiting for a long weekend. We went straight to Cracker Barrel for a big breakfast to get fueled up for the NC State Fair. Then we spent the entire day at the fair!! We had a ton of fun!

They had a whole kiddie land with all kinds of rides just perfect for Kaelyn. I wasn’t sure what she would think, but she LOVED the rides – even the ones that were quiet daring for a 2-year-old. I think she must get this trait from me because I love all big rides. She rode the swings 3 times and this one fire truck ride at least 5 times as well as a whole bunch of others.

We had lots of yummy fair food and Matt and I rode a couple of the big rides together. We also saw, petted, and feed lots of animals including a camel! I think I had a permanent smile plastered on my face the entire day. ๐Ÿ˜€

Today we had Kaelyn’s soccer class, lunch at chick-fil-a, and then the whole afternoon at a pumpkin farm. The farm was set-up so perfectly for kids. They had a huge tube slide, mountains of hay to climb, a corn box (like a sandbox except filled with dried corn kernels), a big corn maize, a kid size corn maize (made of hay bales), a “cow train” ride, hay rides, food/snacks, and rubber duck races. We all just loved every minute of it and Kaelyn didn’t want to leave.

Here are few pics from the weekend….

Feeding the Goats at the Fair
Feeding the Goats at the Fair
Playing in the Corn Box at the Farm
Playing in the Corn Box at the Farm
Everyone on the Hay Mountain at the Farm
Everyone on the Hay Mountain at the Farm
A Recent Pic of the Girls Just Playing
A Recent Pic of the Girls Just Playing

And for comparison…one of these is Kaelyn and one is Evie…do you know which is which??

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Our Girls

So this post might be a little lengthy since I have failed to update for the past couple of months. Things have been crazy busy around here.

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Evie
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Baby Evie is almost 4 months old already!! She is a little mover and shaker. She is so curious about everything and always so wide eyed. If I put her down on the floor she will roll to the other side of the room in no time. She is much more active than Kaelyn was at this age. I think she is just anxious to keep up with big sister. She loves playing in the excersaucer or sitting in the Bumbo seat and watching Kaelyn play. She’s also grabbing onto everything in sight (especially my hair) and putting it in to her mouth. It’s fun to see her hand-eye coordination developing. I swear sometimes she even pushes up on her hands and knees. I think she will be crawling by Christmas…we’ll see if my prediction is true.

Overall she is a very happy, smiley baby and never gets too upset about anything. She is sleeping great at night – usually about 7:30-7:30 with one wake up time around 4:00am to eat and go right back to sleep.

We had her baby dedication during a very nice service at church last month and Momsie, Papa, Uncle Jared, and friends Dan and Ariel joined us for that.

At Evie's Baby Dedication
At Evie's Baby Dedication

Uncle Eric and Aunt Lisa came down for Labor Day weekend to meet Evie for the first time and we all had lots of fun! Right after that we headed to the beach with Momsie, Papa, and Uncle Jared for Evie’s first ever family vacation. She decided that sleeping on the beach to the sound of the ocean waves was very relaxing. ๐Ÿ™‚

Relaxing on the Beach
Relaxing on the Beach

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Kaelyn
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Now for the biggie – Kaelyn turned TWO in August!! I can’t believe my first-born child is already 2 years old. She is not a baby anymore but her very own, independent little person. I always knew that babies changed a lot from age 0 to 1, but I think they change just as much or even more from age 1 to 2. At age one Kaelyn was only crawling and saying a few words. By her second birthday she was running everywhere and speaking in complete sentences (usually several complete sentences at a time)!

This year has been so amazing to really see her little personality develop and to be able to find out what is going on in that brain of hers. I know I’ve written it here before, but she really does amaze me every single day with the things that she says.

By 18-months she knew her alphabet and numbers up to 20. She knows all her colors and shapes, many songs, and can tell you what the opposite word is to probably about 30 different words. Her favorite thing at the moment is to point out every traffic light and stop sign along the road as we drive. She will describe the stop sign, “It’s an octagon shape, and it’s red, and it has the letters O, P, S, T.” She will describe all the lights on the traffic light, “Red means stop, green means go, yellow means slow-up.” ๐Ÿ™‚ Seriously, she amazes me.

I don’t mean to brag so much, but that’s what a mommy is supposed to do, right? ๐Ÿ™‚

Kaelyn continues to be an awesome big sister who is so loving, kind, and caring towards baby Evie. She’s always wiping the spit-up off her face or sharing her toys. I think it says a lot about Kaelyn’s heart in general which I think is so very loving in all ways. She honestly cares about other people and wants them to be happy.

She’s now fully into two-year-old mode and we are just starting to work on potty training. She’s getting more and more independent and is always saying, “Do it by yourself.” (Meaning she wants to do it by herself.) She still enjoys reading books as much as ever, loves being outside and playing with friends, and she is already taking soccer classes with Daddy on the weekends.

Here’s a comparison for the past year:
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090511LIeghannmillerEvie (41 of 114)

WOW – I am so truly blessed! I LOVE both of my wonderful, beautiful little girls.

A Day of Firsts

We woke up yesterday to just another normal Saturday which quickly turned into a day of firsts for Kaelyn.

In the morning we decided to go strawberry picking. I was a little nervous that Kaelyn would just want to run right through the plants, be more interested in bugs, or try to eat all the strawberries. I explained everything to her on our way to the strawberry patch, and much to my delight she behaved perfectly! She loved helping us find the red strawberries and she would put them right in her little bucket. Unfortunately the crop hasn’t been too great this year so we didn’t get very many, but it was still a fun time. We came home and ate all of our strawberries – yum yum! Here are the pics.

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After enjoying our strawberries we took Kaelyn to Snip-Its to get her first hair cut! Again, I wasn’t sure how she would handle the experience. She’s not a big fan of getting her nails trimmed and things like that so I was afraid she’d be very wiggly and upset. Again, she surprised me and did wonderfully!

I think she liked the atmosphere at Snip-Its – it is made for kids and so there were many things for her to look at. She got right up in the little kid sized chair. Her chair happened to be hot pink which was a bonus for her. She just held right on to the little handles and sat perfectly still. We had to make her look down for a bit while the lady cut the back of her hair. Matt used one of their magna-doodle things and drew letters and pictures for her and held it down low so she would look down at it. She never really smiled during the whole process, and a couple of times she gave these looks like “what the heck is going on here?” but she never got upset at all. I was so proud!

The hairdresser kept saying what a good job Kaelyn was doing. At the end Kaelyn got to go to the prize machine where you exchange a piece of your hair for a prize. I also gave her a sucker when we left as an extra special prize – it’s one of her favorite treats. Here are the pics.

Before with stringy, baby hair in back and long bangs in her eyes:

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After with trimmed bangs and a cute little bob in the back:

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In the afternoon I put Kaelyn down for her nap like normal in the pack-n-play. She crawls out of her big girl bed at nap time (but does great at night), so we have been using the pack-n-play for naps. I went to take a shower and as I’m standing there washing my hair in walks Kaelyn with this big grin on her face. I hollered for Matt who was downstairs at the time. I thought he must have gotten her out of bed for some reason, but nope, apparently she learned to climb out of her pack-n-play all by herself. AHHHHH!!! So now we are back to square one on getting her to take naps.

It is pretty amazing to us to that she can climb out of the pack-n-play. Matt put her in the pack-n-play so he could see how she climbed out. Apparently she holds onto the corner and kind of walks up the side and then she kicks her legs over and shimmeys down the outside. We should try to get a video of our little monkey.

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In other news we got our new crib last week. We had to get a new one because the one we used for Kaelyn was recalled. It came in a really big box which Kaelyn and I turned into a super cool fort for a few days. Matt and I stayed up late one night last week taking the old crib down and putting the new one together.

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Old crib…

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New crib…
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There are also some new Kaelyn pics added for April and for May.

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A Naming Story

We have had a difficult time choosing a name for baby girl #2. In the beginning we just couldn’t seem to agree on any names. Finally we narrowed the list down to two names – one was Matt’s favorite and one was my favorite. How would we ever decide? We took polls, asked our friends and family, and even considered just flipping a coin. We still continued to go round and round in circles not being able to choose. We each wanted to go with our favorite name, but also didn’t want the other person to be disappointed in naming our child.

It was becoming quite stressful (especially for me) because I really wanted to know her name. I wanted to be able to get things monogrammed, wanted to put her name up on the wall in her room like we did for Kaelyn, wanted to start calling her by name so Kaelyn would get used to it, and I definitely didn’t want to wait until we were in the hospital to decide (that seems like too much pressure and stress for me).

At one point a few weeks ago Matt had told me that I could go with “my” name for baby girl since I was the mom/pregnant one and all. Then he added that he would be disappointed “to see the letters go up on the wall.” That’s when my heart just broke! I wanted the naming to be a happy decision for both of us.

So we moved onto another strategy of going back to the drawing board and trying to think of another name, a third option, that we could both compromise on and be happy with. We spent hours pouring over names on the internet. We even went on a date to the bookstore one night and sat and read through baby name books. The problem was the more we looked at other names, the more we kept coming back to our original two names.

Somewhere along the way last week I was thinking about names and for some reason my mind started to look at things a little differently. I still loved both names, but for some reason I was feeling more and more drawn to the name that was Matt’s top choice…it just seemed to “fit.” I didn’t say anything to him because I wanted to give myself some time to think it through in my head, and I didn’t want him to be disappointed if I changed my mind.

By last Friday I had 99% sure made up my mind. I called my parents who were on their way for a visit to see us and had them stop by the store where we bought the letters for Kaelyn’s nursery and pick up the appropriate letters for the new nursery. Once I saw the letters I knew for sure that I was 100% happy with my decision. So on Saturday morning while Matt went out for a jog we quickly hung up baby girl’s new name in her room.

When Matt came back this is what he found:


Evie

At first he said “did you buy other letters?” thinking I had bought letters for all the names we were considering just to see how they looked. ๐Ÿ™‚ I told him that, no, I had only gotten those. He kept asking me if I was sure and I said definitely. Then he sat down for a while and just kind of stared at the wall -I think he was in a bit of shock (a good shock). ๐Ÿ™‚

So that’s our naming story. It was stressful for a while, but I think it ended up being pretty special for both of us which I was extremely happy about. Now we have been having fun calling baby girl by her real name: Evie Wren Miller

We can’t wait to meet you very soon little Evie!

(p.s. We’ve had the middle name picked out since the beginning – that was the easy part for us.)

Business

Seeing that Kaelyn is only 19 months old we haven’t really started doing anything proactive in terms of potty training yet. I just didn’t think she was exhibiting all of the signs yet of “being ready.” She does have a little pink potty chair and a couple of books about going to the potty but that is all. A couple of times I noticed her doing a little “dance” and so I’d sit her on the potty and she went pee-pee. Those times were random and she didn’t say anything about needing to go…I just guessed she needed to by her little dance.

BUT as of yesterday everything seems to be quickly changing! I don’t know if two times is enough to say something is happening or if it’s just a coincidence so I guess the coming days will have to tell, but here’s the story…

Yesterday Matt noticed Kaelyn sort of holding herself and she told him “business.” He wondered if she needed to potty so he put her on her little potty and sure enough she went #2!! We were so excited and made quite a big deal about it. Then we thoroughly laughed at the fact that she called it “business.” I think sometimes when we know she is going #2 in her diaper we will make some comment about her “doing her business.” I guess she has picked that up and recorded it in her little brain somewhere along the way. It is amazing what kids learn!!

So this morning she was sitting in her highchair eating breakfast and she says again “business.” So I put her on her potty chair and she did it again!! I couldn’t believe it!

Sorry if you didn’t really want to know about Kaelyn’s bathroom habits, but I just had to share and write this down as a memory for myself. I’m so proud of my big girl!!

Overdue Updates

I really should try to do a better job updating our blog here. There are so many impressive and funny things that Kaelyn does and I should share them with our loyal readers as well as have it be a little record book for my own memory (which is notoriously horrible).

Kaelyn is now 19 months old and baby girl #2 is 32 weeks developed in my belly. We still have not decided on a name for baby girl. I’m not sure what we are going to do or how we are going to make that decision, but we are SO ready to just decide! At the moment it is still between Lila or Evie.

Kaelyn is really talking up a storm these days. She knows all her ABCs like I mentioned before and recognizes all of her numbers from zero to ten. She is just starting to count on her own as well. For example I was counting her toes this morning “1, 2, 3, 4, 5” and then she adds in “6, 7, 9, 10.” Nevermind the missing number 8. ๐Ÿ™‚

It seems she can say pretty much anything she wants and will repeat everything you say (watch out!). She is stringing together two and three word phrases as well. It is so fun to hear what her little mind is thinking about and also helpful to know when she wants something. Here’s a cute example…the other night Matt heard Kaelyn saying something in her bed and he went in to check on her and she was wrestling around saying “leg stuck, leg stuck!” Apparently her leg was wrapped up in her covers and she couldn’t get it out.

Kaelyn LOVES to be outside and enjoyed several egg hunts over the past few weeks. We spend lots of time at the playground these days where she is getting more and more brave every time we go. She is also a dancer. We go to a music time at a local coffee shop each week and she will stand right up at the front and just dance and dance the entire time and do all the motions to the songs. If I turn a CD on at home she will dance for the entire length of the CD.

Kaelyn is such a fun and loving girl. She is really sensitive and cares deeply for others. I think she is going to be an amazing big sister! Just this morning we were at library story time where we just moved up to the next age level and I wasn’t sure how she would like it. It is longer than the baby story time and has activities that require more focus. She just listened and listened, and I was impressed that she focused for that long. One of the things they did was a puppet show. The puppet show was about this rabbit who had her kite stuck in a tree. All these other animals came along to try to help the rabbit get the kite down but none of them could help. Kaelyn was so sensitive. She literally started crying every time the animal would leave without helping get the kite! Finally a wind came along (all the kids blew) and the kite was rescued.

Okay, I’m sure I could keep going and going and thinking of more stories to share, but I didn’t intend to write a book here. ๐Ÿ™‚ I will hopefully do better (at least for the next 8 weeks) on sharing the updates.

ABCs

Kaelyn may have been a “late” walker, but she sure hasn’t wasted anytime learning her alphabet. She’s been doing this for a few weeks now. She can also do her numbers from 0-9. We’ll get a video of that soon.

Without further ado, here is Kaelyn Rose at 18 months saying all the letters of the alphabet with her flashcards:



Go, Go, Go!

Kaelyn is a pretty big football fan. Anytime she sees football on tv she does a little arm pump and yells “Go, Go, Go!” It’s daggum’ cute.

We always let her choose a few books from her shelf to read before nap time and bed time. Lately her two favorite picks have been books from her Nana (Matt’s mom) and her Momsie (my mom). She will pick out “Buckeyes Big Game” (a gift from Nana) and hand it to me and say “Go, Go, Go!” and she’ll pick out “In Grandma’s Arms” (a gift from Momsie) because she especially likes the pictures in this one.

She has always loved reading and apparently she is also developing a love of football as well. ๐Ÿ™‚

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Reading Books

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Watching “Go, Go, Go” with Graham at Thanksgiving

Seriously Outnumbered

That’s what Matt is now that he is going to have a house with three girls! Me, Kaelyn, and our yet-to-be-named baby

GIRL!!!!

I’ve neglected to post much lately, especially about the fact that we are having another baby, but I figured most of our readers knew about that already. We had our ultrasound today and everything looks great! Still on track for a June 6 due date.

Kaelyn is excited and has already learned how to say “sissy” so she is well on her way to being a great big sister!

We might have our hands full in about 12 or 13 more years, but that’s okay. A girl house will be lots of fun I’m sure. Plus we already have all the girl stuff from Kaelyn so it will make things easy for now in a practical sense.

Now the selection of a name begins….

She Did It!

After 16.5 months Kaelyn is finally walking!!!!

Around mid-October last year Kaelyn would stand and take 3 or 4 steps occasionally. She did that for a few weeks and then completely stopped. She hasn’t seemed interested in trying to walk at all since then. She would walk as long as she was holding on to someone’s hand, but the moment you let go then she would sit right down. I was starting to get very worried, but everyone (including her pediatrician) assured me she was just fine and would walk when she was ready.

Well, this evening, January 11, was a momentous occasion! Matt, Kaelyn, and I were sitting around in the living room floor watching Finding Nemo. Kaelyn was crawling around playing and semi-watching the movie. At one point I looked over at Kaelyn and she was just standing there all by herself. I quickly told Matt to look at her and we were very happy just to see her standing like that. Then all of a sudden she just took off walking over to me!!! I could not stop my tears!!! My heart was so proud and overfilled with joy. I had been waiting for this moment!

Then Kaelyn walked over to Matt. Then she walked over to her rocking chair, and back to me, and back to Matt. You get the idea! For the rest of the evening she walked all over the living room as if she had been doing it for months and it was no big deal.

I guess she was just waiting until she was good and ready and really knew what she was doing! It was like someone just turned on her light switch because the change was completely sudden and out-of-the-blue.

I’m sure walking will bring its own challenges of chasing her down, but I am so excited for this new milestone! My baby is turning into a big girl!

Here’s video evidence: