Monday, March 28, 2011

Nine Months

Katie Anne is 9 months old today!  She is such a joy and has added so much happiness to our home.  She is full of smiles and laughter - especially when Kirsten is around.  It fills my heart to see how much my girls love each other.  She is crawling all over the place, walking along the furniture, and can stand on her own now.  It is unbelievably cute to see her stretch up on her tip toes to try and see things.  She is saying mama, dada, baba, gaga, lala, and dede.  Kirsten is desperately trying to teach her "Sissy".   At her doctor visit this morning she was 20lbs 12 oz and 28 1/2 inches, that is 81% for both.

Here is her 9 month picture.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Portion Distortion

One of mine and Jeremy's favorite things to do is to go out and eat.   I have desperately been trying to find things to do together that do not involve food.  Last night, I broke down.  We went out to eat for the first time in two weeks (which may be a record for us, sadly).  We went to one of our favorites, Cotton Patch Cafe.  I looked longingly over their  menu full of rich comfort food, and then very carefully decided on a salad.  I even asked for no dressing.  The first bite was gross, but I thought, I can do this, I HAVE to do this, the second bite made me ill, and the third bite came back up (sorry, gross, I know).  My wonderful, loving husband offered to switch plates with me.  So he ate my salad, while I ate his meatloaf, mashed potatoes and broccoli.  Each and every bite came with a renewed sense of guilt at my failure.  I felt even worse when we were leaving and I saw two other women eating the same salad.  How come they can do it and I can't?  So when we got home, I looked up the nutrition facts, just to see how bad I had been.  I was shocked to say the least.

Nutritional Facts             Chicken Salad                    Meatloaf Plate
Calories                              1657                                   537
Fat                                      111                                      52
Sodium                               5539                                    1441
Carbs                                   95                                     38

I was blown away.   You mean that I can eat meatloaf, mashed potatoes and broccoli for a third the calories of a salad with chicken?!!

I decided to look up the nutrition facts from some of our other favorite restaurants as well.  I learned a couple of things.
1) Eating "just a salad"  is almost always the worst option.
2) I am NEVER going to go to restaurant again without looking up the nutrition facts first and picking out my meal BEFORE I get there.
3) My body is getting used to having healthier things and actually rejected the unhealthy food.

I think that this is an indicator of a lot of what is wrong with our society.  We are making ourselves fat through lack of information and ascribing to myths about food.  I am grateful for the knowledge that I am gaining and the positive effect that it is having on my health.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Durkin's Pizza Tour

Today our Daisy Troop went on a tour of Durkin's Pizza.  It is this amazing pizza place by us and Mr Durkin himself did the tour.  The girls got to see the kitchen, the huge ovens, refrigerators, freezers and dishwasher.
 They got to see where the pizzas are made and where they keep all of the toppings.
 Kirsten was particularly fascinated by the mixer that was bigger than she is!
 He gave every girl some dough and let them make their own pizzas.  They had so much fun playing with the dough.  He brought out every topping he has and let the girls try anything they wanted.  I was super surprised with some of the girls trying the mushrooms and onions!
 We topped it all off with a pizza party!
I am so grateful for the amazing experiences Kirsten is able to have as a Girl Scout.  It never ceases to amaze me how generous the community is to our girls.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Spring Break 2011

I was actually really worried about Spring Break this year.  How in the world was I supposed to entertain a five year old for an entire week who is accustomed to being at school all day?!  She had some moments of boredom, but overall, I think we did rather well.  

I tried to be prepared by having several crafts ready for her to do.  We built a foam jewelry box, colored wooden dolls, went through an entire package of card stock, and I even taught her how to needlepoint! - My Grandma Lowe would be so  proud!

On Monday we went to have lunch with Jeremy at work.  We had never seen the cafeteria at his office before and were able to see all of his co-workers again.  They loved being able to meet Katie, and Jeremy loved showing off his girls.

Tuesday we went to Frisco Commons Park with our mom's group.  We had a picnic lunch and played for awhile.  After that we went to pick up the bike trailer I found on Craigslist.  Now I can ride my bike to pick Kirsten up from school and throw both girls in the trailer.

On Wednesday we went to the park again with some friends.  I think that the entire neighborhood was there.  It was a blast.  Kirsten took her bike and just rode around in circles for an hour.  She taught her sister how to properly use a slide.
Katie spent most of the time on the swing.  I put her there because she kept trying to eat the woodchips!  Thank goodness she liked it.
Thursday was $2 day at the Frank Buck Zoo in Gainesville.  We picked up Colette and her 3 kids, all piled in our car, and made the hour drive up there.  It was a great little zoo.  We made it through in about 2 hours, which was perfect with 5 little kiddos!  There was also a great park across the street where we let the kids play for awhile.  Kirsten's favorite was the Giraffes - big surprise there - and they had an incredible African Savannah.  We will have to go back when it is less crowded to let her feed the Giraffe.  She would love that!
We were all a little sunburned and just took it easy on Friday and did some shopping at the Gap Outlet with my 30% off coupon.  That night we had a great time playing games with Zach and Allison. They were even super patient in letting Kirsten play with us - thanks guys!

Saturday we were finally able to find an Easter Dress for Kirsten.  It is way harder than it should be.  We also bought the wood flooring to put down in our living room.

That is about it.  I wish I had taken more pictures, but I am personally just glad that we survived!  

By the way, they just showed up to put in our new carpet!! I am so excited!!!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Weight Loss Journey

It seems that we all have something in our life that we struggle with the most.  Often times these are buried so deep within us that they are hidden from the rest of the world.  When your deepest struggle is your weight, it is out there for the whole world to see.  I think that this makes it even harder.  It is no secret that I have struggled with my weight since my mission 10 years ago.  I could go into all of the reasons why, childhood trauma, coping mechanisms ect...  The reality is that these things do not matter to me anymore. I have decided NO MORE.  I drew a line in the sand that I will not cross.  I am changing my life, completely.

I am working with a counselor to deal with the childhood trauma, coping mechanisms ect...  I am going to the gym everyday but Sunday.  We bought bikes.  We have purged our house, and I am even cooking fish!  (I know, HUGE shocker there.)  So today is our one week mark.  So far I am down 9.5 pounds!  At one point I was down a little more, but it was a rough weekend.  But seriously, 9.5 pounds in one week?! I have not lost that in the past 3 years.  I am motivated and excited.  I am trying to teach myself and my children healthy habits that will last the rest of our lives.  My goal is 75 pounds this year and another 45 next year.  I am going to do this, and you are going to hold me accountable.  I will keep a running update everyweek on the side of my blog.  If you see me lapse - PLEASE kick me in the face.

There are so many people who have been a motivation to me, many do not even know it.  I would say the three people who have inspired me the most have been Aime Rittler and Allie Sensinger with their continual running and Jodi Reeve with her working out.  They keep me motivated and I finally decided, if they can do it, so can I!

So here it goes.  Week Two.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Our weekend

We had a wonderful, relaxing, much needed weekend.  Jeremy and I have been spending the evenings after the girls go to bed for the last week working on tiling the bathroom.  Other than a few little mishaps -like running out of grout at 9 pm after Home Depot closes - it went really smoothly.  It looks great!  I will get pictures up after we get the baseboards back on.  We ran out of nails for the nail gun Saturday night.  

This week was the 99th birthday for the Girl Scout organization.  On Friday, Mrs Tinsley invited all of the Girl Scouts at Ogle to wear their uniforms.  She honored them at the morning assembly and we got pictures of all the Girls from the school together.  I love it when they get to see that Girl Scouts is more than our little group of ten girls.  It makes them realize that they are a part of something bigger. 

Kirsten is on the second row on the left.
After the assembly, the Kindergarteners had their Nursery Rhyme Parade.  It was in conclusion to their Nursery Rhyme Unit and they all got to dress up as their favorite character and parade around the school.  Kirsten and her friend Azalea coordinated.  Kirsten was Little Miss Muffet and Azalea was her Spider.   They paraded around holding hands.  It was too cute.  Of course my camera died as they came around the corner. I am trying to find someone who might have gotten pictures.

On Saturday we were invited by our friends, Liz and Rick Cochran, to go to the Science and Nature Museum at Fair Park in Dallas.  We picked them up and managed to get 4 carseats, 4 adults and two strollers in our car and drove down there all together.  We had such a great time.

Here are all of the kiddos with the T-Rex model used in Jurassic Park
Kirsten, Katie, Kylie and Seth
Last night after the museum, we got a babysitter and Jeremy and I were able to go on a much needed date.  As much as I love my kiddos, it is great to get out and away every once in a while.

Tonight, Katie Anne got her first haircut.  It has been in her eyes for a while and I have been trying to figure out what to do with it.  I have tried ponytails, headband and clips, but she pulls everything out.  So tonight she got it cut.
I know that it was not a ton, but it was still hard to admit that my 8 month old needed a hair cut!

This week is spring break and we are trying to come up with ideas to fill it.  Kirsten is used to being busy all day, so it should be interesting.  I bought 4 crafts projects for her to work on, and she did 3 of them today.  Oh well.  I think we may try to go on a day trip or two and definitely hit up a few parks.  It will just be great to have a week that we don't have to pack lunches, get out on time or worry about home work.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Camp Classen

Last weekend, Kirsten went to Girl Scout Camp at the YMCA Camp Classen in Davis, OK.  I wanted to go with her, but with a nursing 8 month old, that was not going to happen.  My friend Misti was going with her daughter, Keeton, so she took Kirsten too.  Thank you so much!!!! She had such a great time, learned so much and made so many new friends.  It was awfully quiet around here, and we were so excited when she got home Sunday morning.  Misti took a ton of pictures (170 to be exact).  So here are some of my favorites.
Her bunk bed in the cabin
Playing on the top bunks.  She said they hung their blankets off the top bunk and made tents where they could have secret talks.  So fun!!
Dining Hall
The Rock On workshop - her favorite one!
Archery.  The look on her face is priceless,.
After the insect workshop, they made a human insect with 3 body sections.
Kirsten and Keeton.  She said "We had to walk everywhere and never even got to go in the car!"
Making guitars.  This year's theme was Camp Girls Rock
Lo Ropes Course
Team Tactics with Leah
Leah, Kirsten, and Keeton, they are inseparable!
She even got to go on an hour horseback ride through the woods.
Camp T-Shirts
The Troop shirts that my mother-in-law made.  She is amazing!
For their skit, Kirsten and Keeton danced to "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun".  They won best costumes.  You cannot tell me that she is shy at all!
Leaving Camp
I am so glad she got to go and am so grateful to Misti for taking her and for all of my other friends who were there and helped keep an eye on her.  She loves that she now has friends in 2nd grade that say hi to her at school. I cannot wait until next year when I get to go too!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Trip to Kansas

We took advantage of the long weekend over President's Day and flew to Kansas to visit my mom.  It was great to get out of town and even better to spend time with her and Clinton.  On Saturday we drove to Wamego and went to thee Wizard of Oz Museum.  Kirsten is obsessed with this movie, thanks to her Aunt Megan, and absolutely loved it.  She kept wanting to climb into the displays to get a closer look.
She did not like walking through the scary forest or seeing the Wicked Witch, but she LOVED Glenda.  She also got to sit in the Wizard's throne!
Kirsten spent Sunday playing with Playdoh.  She made an entire zoo on the kitchen table.  It had an entrance, a penguin, giraffe, and polar bear.  She is so creative!
Kirsten and Katie had a blast playing on Grandma's piano.
On Monday we drove into Kansas City and went to the Visitor's Center for our Church in Independence.  Last time we went Kirsten was a baby, I think she enjoyed it more this time.  Both girls especially loved the children's room where they could pretend to be pioneers.
They even got to play house in a log cabin!
Next we went to visit the Liberty Jail.  Kirsten did not like it.  She said it was scary and I had to coax her into going near it for this picture.  
Finally, on our way to the airport, we drove by the Kansas City Temple that is under construction.  We are looking forward to taking the girls there next year for the open house tours before the dedication.
We had such a great visit with my mom.  Thank you for letting us come!


Kirsten's class gave the presentation at Good Morning Ogle for President's Day.
She is 3rd from the right in the light blue shirt.
They said all of the Presidents of the United States in order and then sang "You're a Grand Old Flag".  It was truly amazing!  She has been working on this all year and I am so impressed that my five year old knows all of the presidents!

Eight Months

Katie turned 8 months old on February 28th.  Honestly, I don't know where time is going.  It is getting close to impossible to get her to hold still for a picture.  We kept trying throughout the week, and after more than 60 pictures, this is as close as we could get for her 8 month bear picture.
Katie continues to grow at record speed.  She is over 21 lbs now and has 6 teeth.  She crawls all over the place and now she loves to walk along the furniture.  She has even started to let go and try to take a step.  She has such a beautiful smile and brings so much joy to our lives.