Sunday, December 27, 2009

This is my second post on Christmas. I suggest starting below with Christmas Eve and then reading this post on Christmas day to follow chronologically.

Christmas morning was a new tradition for us. We stayed home and opened presents from Santa and ate delicious eggs benedict that Dusty made. Santa even brought Dusty a present, the new Jay-Z CD.

Max woke up and found a new John Deere tricycle waiting under the tree for him. He was very excited and climbed right on it. Of course he wouldn't sit still for at least one cute picture of him on it but I guess that is a good thing. He is a bit too short for pedaling but it will be perfect come spring. He currently just climbs on and off of it and dumps the back over and over again.

We then proceeded over to my Grandma's home for gifts and food. Of course GG had frosted cookies which means a big mess with my little man. Luckily Grandma was willing to keep track of him while he ate them.

Bopa was kind enough to dress up as Santa and hand out the gifts. Max wasn't into sitting on Santa's lap but he was more than willing to help unload the gifts from the bag. Rory was perfectly happy sitting with the fat man in the red suit and posed nicely for pictures. Yep, she's going to be my beauty queen!

Tara got Dusty and Dad special hats for Christmas. Max was terrified of them so they didn't get to wear them long, but Tara was happy she got a picture with them.

It was a very exciting Christmas. The kids make Christmas special in a whole new way and its fun living the season through them. Here's to a great end to the year, and looking forward to what 2010 will bring!
I have too many pictures to share, so I'm going to have to do at least two blog posts to get as many pictures up as I can. We'll start with Christmas Eve.

We started out at Joe and Bridget's home in Stillwater. Luckily it really wasn't a bad drive as all that snow that was forcasted just didn't show up. We had a great time and found out that purple was the color this year! It's become a joke that the last few Christmases almost all the women end up wearing the same color, and this year was no exception as most of us were in purple. We naturally had to get a picture of this and then decided to take a sassy picture for our good friend Don who lives in Miami. He'll love our Christmas picture for him!

We then proceeded to Annette's home for the evening where most of Dusty's family congregated. They brought back out the pinata game since we finally had some little kids big enough to hit it. It was so cute to watch. Jody helped Rory get in a swing.

Lyla was just a ham as she would hit the pinata and then turn and smile at everyone that was cheering her on. Naturally both her and Max got very upset when their turns were over.

Max even went so far as to hit his auntie Rosie for taking the bat away. It was very naughty but so, so funny too. Luckily no one was laughing loud enough over his crying to encourage that behaviour. Max did get in quite a few good hits though!

I also had to get a picture of Max with Brayden since the two of them looked so handsome in their sweater vests!

Christmas Eve was very fun with Dusty's families. I am really looking forward to next year as both my kids will be big enough to run around and play with all the cousins!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Rory is 3 months old and I was finally able to get a picture of her big smile. She can really turn on the charm when she wants to and especially likes when you are giving her your uninterrupted attention. This is usually when she'll give you her biggest grins.

Max was of course helping me take Rory's pictures and I finally let him go up and pose with her too. Of course then he'll only look at "baby" instead of me. Oh yeah, and he is quite the fashionista. He loves taking mom's headbands and hair ties and wearing them.

They are a handful at times, but then I look at pictures like this and I wonder how I got so lucky!

Monday, December 21, 2009

We celebrated Christmas with Dusty's siblings and parents on Saturday. It was a great night with 20 lbs of crab leg, steak, and of course some beverages. Isn't my little girl adorable in her Santa outfit? Yes, Katie is cute also.

Max riding the Barbie tricycle we got Lyla. Yeah, he spent the evening on that bike, good thing Santa has decided to bring Max his own tricycle on Christmas Eve. (And even better that he can't read this to find out in advance!)

Suzanne and Curt with all the grandbabies! From left to right, Oliver (4 days), Lyla (17 mos), Max (19 mos), Allison (2 yrs), Rory (3 mos).

Dusty and I in our Christmas finest. Nothing says Happy Holidays like a Santa tie and Christmas sweater!
We had a great time and it was a perfect way to start out the holidays by having a relaxing evening with family. The kids were up way to late but of course there was too much going on to even consider going to bed early. I hope we have as much fun for the rest of the holidays as we did Saturday, because that is going to be hard to beat!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Oliver William Wirth was born December 16th, at 7:52p.m. He weight 8 pounds and 4 ounces and was 21.5 inches long. Here's a picture of Ed, Katie and Oliver at the hospital.
And proud Grandma Suzanne with her newest grandson!
He has his Mommy and Sister's cheeks, his daddy's nose and slate blue eyes. He also has quite a bit of dark brown hair on his head. He is just beautiful - or handsome if you prefer that for a boy.
I'm so excited to add a nephew to my family! Allison, Max, Lyla, Rory and Oliver are going to have so much fun together as they grow up and it is going to be so much fun to witness it all. Congrats to the happy parents, Katie and Ed!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Pretty sure I couldn't be more proud of my sister than I am at this moment. She has finally taken the advice of MANY people and is going to try her hand at writing. She has been accepted to write for the St. Paul Examiner. Please make sure to visit her column to see what interesting things she has to write about.

Oh yeah, her first article hasn't been published yet so there may not be anything but her picture and a link to her bio when you click, but I was so excited about it I wanted to brag in advance. Keep checking it out as I'm sure she will be very entertaining.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Saturday we loaded up the family and headed over to Target Portrait Studios for Rory's 3 month pictures and also for a family picture. Of course, it never goes according to plans. First off, Max burnt his hand grabbing my curling iron. We also didn't have as much time as I had hoped for and in our rush out the doors I forgot to put any jewelery on which means no wedding rings for Dusty or I in our family photos. Also, Rory needed to eat the minute we got to the studio so if you look closely, you will see a bottle between Dusty and I in the family photo as we spot fed between shots. But the pictures turned out great in spite of it all! Here's my little sweetheart...
Don't forget a cute shot of both my babies. Don't they look so angelic here? I don't know how they pulled that one off!

And lastly, one of the best looking families around, if I do say so myself!
I'm looking forward to getting my pictures up on the walls of our house. I mean, who doesn't like to show off their kids?

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Since returning to work we've been very fortunate that both my sister and my mother-in-law have been able to help watch the kids when Dusty is working. While getting ready to leave I decided to get a picture of Grandma playing on the floor with her grand babies. They love when she comes over!
Max naturally has to run over to the camera so we took a picture together. (I can turn the screen out so he can see himself as we take the picture.) Yeah, he is pretty dang cute!
Dusty surprised us on Saturday by bringing home a Christmas tree. Naturally he insisted on screwing it into the ground so it couldn't tip over like a past Christmas, that was really upsetting! I had Max help me decorate the tree and showed him how the ornaments go on. The next time I looked, I found this big heap of ornaments on the tree; maybe he'll get it next year.
After Max went to bed I restrung the lights and hung all the ornaments so they were out of his reach. He was having too much fun pulling them off and on. Good thing Dusty screwed it into the ground because it would have tipped over that day with all the time Max spent pulling on the ornaments. The tree looks a bit funny decorated only on the top half, but at least we have a decorated tree. Plus, it is a useful visual point to have Rory look at while doing her neck exercises!

The Petersons were kind enough to lend us their Bumbo so Rory can work on strengthening her neck muscles. You can tell she still favors her left side but she is getting a lot better at turning to the right, and making her use all her neck muscles will help out with that. Thank you Petersons!

Also, as I stated in my previous post, I was able to take Rory to her second physical therapy appointment and I learned a lot while I was there. For starters, I was disappointed to hear that we could have started therapy at 2 weeks when we first told our pediatrician about our concerns. I understand that some babies may just grow out of the problem, but it is frustrating to know we could have been helping her weeks earlier.

The therapist also informed me that I should expect Rory to go back to favoring her left side with major milestones like crawling and sitting up. When she starts using new muscle groups she'll stop focusing on the neck muscles. This is just like how a talking child may stop talking as they start to walk, basically they are focused on just the one activity. It makes sense, but I didn't know to expect that so I'm glad I found out beforehand.

While therapy will eventually drop down to once a month, we should expect to do the exercises with Rory through her first year as major milestones will bring set backs and we'll have to make sure she gets back on track to using her neck to its full potential. After that we shouldn't have to worry about it. I really wasn't expecting all of this so it was a bit overwhelming at first, but I'm glad to know it all now and am thankful that she shared this with me in advance. It is a joy watching Rory as she is changing so much and the exercises just mean we'll be even more focused on her so we shouldn't miss anything!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

What a horrible start of a week! Sunday I was up at 4am waiting for Rory to wake up as she usually gets up between 1 and 4am. Max woke up first, at 6am, which was really exciting but would have been better had I slept. Later that day, I had a little bleach incident which resulted in getting both bleach on Max's sleeve and also on the bathroom rug. Luckily both were small spots and not very noticeable but that all happened by 11am! The rest of the day was at least uneventful.

Sunday night Rory was up at 2am, Max was crying at 4am, and then Rory was up again at 5:30am! Thankfully Grandma came over to our house to watch the kids as I was far to exhausted to try to get them dressed and out of the house in time for me to get to work. After work I had to jet home and grab Rory to go to her physical therapy appointment. By the time I got home, ate dinner, got the kids into bed and finished up with chores around the house it was 9pm and time for me to get to bed. (I know, early, but did I not mention the recent sleeping schedule?!)

We had another terrible night with Max up screaming at midnight, Rory up at 2am, then Max was up for the day at 5am (much to our dismay) and all his jabbering got Rory up for the day at 5:30am. I had to be out the door early to get to a doctor's appointment before work this morning and after work I'll be taking Rory to the chiropractor. (This is in hopes to prevent any more ear infections as one was more than enough for me!)

Tonight when I get home for the chiropractor Dusty will be making tacos for dinner which is one of my favorite dinners to have so here's to a more positive rest of the week! I'll post more about Rory's therapy later, that was a very informative visit.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Wednesday we headed out to Jeff and Cyd's for our monthly dinner. Chris and Jill have finally brought Brayden John into the world so we decided it would be cute to get a picture of Jeff and Cyd with their "farm babies" as I like to refer to them. From left to right we have Lyla (15 months), Max (18 months), Jeff holding Brayden (2 weeks), and Cyd holding Lorelei (2 months). Needless to say these kids are going to be growing up together and getting into lots of trouble if we continue the farm dinner tradition for years to come!

Rory and I visited with our pediatrician Thursday to check her ears now that she is off all medication and believe it or not, they were clear! Unfortunately this week Rory has become a bit crabbier so I was worried things weren't going to go well. Now I know I can associate the crabbiness not to illness but just to the fact that she is still adjusting to sleeping flat on her back in the crib instead of in her carseat or swing. It is a relief, although I wish she would adjust quicker. I really don't enjoy being up for hours in the middle of the night, especially since I've returned to working full time! Of course, she does seem to enjoy falling asleep whenever Daddy rocks her.

Max has become a toddler in just a few weeks time! He really enjoys saying "no", even when that isn't an answer to a question. Like this morning Suzanne was over to watch the kids and asked Max what type of clothes he wanted to wear today and his response, "no". It was pretty funny. He also enjoys waking up in the morning and then finding the first naughty thing he can. I'm learning to be on top of him the minute I let him out of his crib. He also is still enjoying his new trick, "the hulk", as Daddy taught him. He tenses up all his muscles and it is really funny. I snapped this great picture of him doing it after a spaghetti dinner so he is especially cute with out his shirt, a very blotchy face and drool down his front.

As I stated above, I returned to working full time this week. Since Dusty's work schedule has been so unreliable these past few months it made sense for me to move up my return date. I very much enjoy when Dusty has to be Mr. Mom so this isn't a very hard transition for me. We also are very lucky in having both my sister, Andrea, and Dusty's mom, Suzanne, to help watch the kids when Dusty does work and the kids love spending time with both of them. It's been a tough first week as there was a lot going on for us and I'm still adjusting to moving things around my work schedule, but I know it will get better as time moves on just like it did when I returned to work after Max's birth. I'm also very fortunate in having a family oriented employer which makes the transition a lot smoother!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Rory had her physical therapy evaluation on Monday. Dusty took her since I have returned to working full time so I don't have a lot of information regarding the actual visit. I wanted to offer this WebMD link for all of you that are curious about Torticollis. I think it gives helpful information in explaining the issue and why we need to stay on top of treating Rory:

I haven't actually asked our pediatrician, and I won't meet with the physical therapist until next week when I take Rory to her appointment, but I don't believe Rory has a severe case of this. She is able to turn her head to look at her right side, she just doesn't do it often or for very long.

She seems to be adjusting to the stretches. She didn't like them while Dusty was showing me what to do, but I was learning it and jerking her around so I don't blame her for being upset. Later in the evening I tried them on my own and she did just fine. I don't think they hurt her, it seems like she is more bothered by the fact that she is being pinned into one position for 30 seconds at a time. We will continue with the physical therapy (or PT for those in the know) once a week for 4 more weeks and then every other week for 4 more visits. If she adjusts well to her exercises it could drop down to once a month, so we'll continue in hopes she gets better fast!

Thank you to everyone for all your support and advice with this! It is especially nice to have a couple of you to talk to about this as you have or are also going through this with your children. I didn't even realize it was so common - its been amazing to have your advice and encouragement!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

It was another beautiful stay up at my parent's lake house. Look at this sunset! I love when the clouds turn purple. Mom met me and the kids Tuesday night and we all headed up to spend the rest of the week together and to celebrate Thanksgiving. Dad and Dusty met us for Thanksgiving but then left to continue their pursuit for the big buck. (As noted in my previous post, my grandpa got said buck, but both Dusty and Dad left empty handed.) I got this very funny picture of Grandma with all her grandbabies. Don't you love how she has Rory over her shoulder and then on her lap are Max and Peanut fighting over a stuffed animal with their mouths! Max is a special little guy.

We also were able to get lots of "dimple smiles" from Rory. She has my dimples and I'm very pleased about that. I didn't get a good picture of the dimple smiles, but here she is smiling at Grandma while enjoying her bath in the kitchen sink.

We had a very nice time up there. We got to play a lot of Wii, visit with the Gazdik's on Thanksgiving, and most importantly, I got to get some extra sleep! Dusty is already busy trying to figure out the next weekend we can go back up there. Of course, he's hoping for a little ice to squeeze some fishing in too.