Tuesday, October 07, 2008

"O" is for...One

Avalon has turned ONE!!! It is unbelievable that a year has passed. Time just goes too fast, especially in the life of a baby.

Besides Avalon being a little under the weather, she had a pretty great birthday! We did a fun little duckie theme and it was bright and cheery.

The day started off with a trip to pick-up balloons. Avalon loved them and I dare say it was her favorite part of her birthday. Which I am such a good Mom that I didn't even take a picture of her playing with them.
We then got all ready for her party. Iced the cake and wrapped presents all while she took a short nap.
After Dad got home we started the fun stuff and opened presents. It was really sweet as a lot of the kids from the neighborhood knew it was her birthday and stopped by with a little gift for her. She got some fun things, her most favorite being a doll. She also got a fun little purse, outfits, stuffed animals and a music maker. She also got a special "Jade" bracelet from Grandma and Grandpa Anderson, since her middle name is Jade.

Of course all the neighbor girls had to stay for cake, so we had quite a crowd for the big moment. It started with Avalon jumping up and down to get to the cake, which we put on the table due to my last 2 kids making such messes. Once the candle was blown out she went right for it, poked a finger in the frosting and started screaming. Every time she touched the cake she would cry. She was scared to death of it! We finally got her to take a duck off and suck on it, but she was having nothing to do with taking hand fulls and piling it in her mouth. By this point she was cranky and tired and just wanted to go to bed. It was the end of a very long and special day of turning One!!!

Monday, September 01, 2008

"P" is for...Pocatello Marathon

This marathon has become a yearly tradition for the Anderson Family. We ran this a couple years ago and it was a blast for the whole family to get together and run. A great meeting site for a Family Reunion
This year Jerry the head of the Family and party planner turned 60 several days before the marathon so it was only natural that the family come from all over to celebrate, and what better way to celebrate than spend a day running after Grandpa!

This year Monte ran a 10k and took 1st for his age group. The kids, Anali, Aden and Avalon all ran the fun run and finished. Aden was a trooper as usual and just kept running. Avalon and I tried to keep up pace. Anali ran really fast crying the whole way.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

"F" is for...First Day of School

That's right Anali is officially in Kindergarten.
She has had a hard adjustment being gone from home so long, but she is loving it! Her teacher Miss Reed is excellent and makes school so fun. Anali is learning a lot and is really close to reading, which is super exciting!
Aden is in Pre-School and surprised all of us when he just walked right in the door with no tears.
He has loved all the fun projects they do at school and is always so happy to pull them out of his backpack and show me.
What a year!!! We have lots of learning and growing to do this year in school and lots of fun to look forward to.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

"G" is for...Gymnastics Meet

Anali participated in her second ever meet for her Gymnastics school. She worked really hard to perfect her routine, and all her hard work payed off.

She did a excellent routine. The best I had seen her do it in all of her practicing! On her first pass during her routine she had to do a forward roll, straddle roll, chase, chase, cartwheel, cartwheel, salute. Second pass was a handstand (touch feet together), short run, round-off, rebound, stretch jump, salute. By far the handstand was the hardest for her and she did it perfect. She received a 9.05 for her performance. That put her 2nd in her group and 4th overall.

She was so excited to get a medal!! She also remembered that last year she got flowers and was sure to mention that if she got a medal she also got flowers!!

We are so proud of and love our little gymnast!!!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

"S" is for...Sailing

As a gift on Father's Day we gave Monte Sailing Lessons. I know you are all wondering "Sailing Lessons in Iowa" I too was surprised, but they exist. They are taught on Grey's Lake by the cutest 80 year old man named Dick and the best part is that they are super inexpensive.

Monte came home from his first lesson with a smile on his face and a little bounce to his step. He had a great time and the wind cooperated for the most part. There were a few "Chris Farley" moments on the lake but he seemed to enjoy it.

We joined him on his last day to watch him maneuver around the obstacle course set-up and he was able to take the kids out for a ride. I chatted with his sailing instructor on the shore while he sailed around with the kids one at a time. Dick was a sure delight!! At 80 years old still full of life and so excited about this wonderful hobby. I learned several things about sailing and the most interesting is that it is very inexpensive as far as hobbies go. Lucky for me as I think it might be a new favorite summer activity!

Monday, August 04, 2008

"O" is for...One Hundred and Four

104 degrees. That is how hot it is outside today. It is also how hot Anali has been on and off today. Coincidence???? She is being a trooper, but a high fever, headache, and throw-up is not fun for anyone. She has worried all day that she will not be better in time for school, her gymnastic meet or the week that our neighbor girl gets to stay with us. She also mentioned that this is a "really bad bad day".

Since Anali was not feeling well, the other two kids had a lot less Mom and Anali time. Aden showed his disappointment by drawing a wonderful picture on the carpet in yellow marker! I was too mad to think to take a picture, but it would have been a great addition to this post. Instead I quickly tried to clean it up...can anyone say "yellow pea looking stain"? Aden will be happy when Anali gets feeling better and uses her imagination to keep him going in a world of make-believe.
Avalon was really, really missing her sister today. Anali plays with Avalon so much more than I realized. Her newest favorite thing to play with Avalon is pretending that Avalon is some type of animal on a leash. She is so good with her and loves to make her smile and laugh. I know Avalon is hoping Anali is better soon so she has a play pal.
Unfortunately I think today was just a taste of what it will be like to have Anali at school all day. Everyone is going to miss her SO MUCH!

Get better soon sweetie, so we have a few more fun days to play before school starts!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

"W" is for...WHAT!!!

That's right WHAT!!! I looked at the calendar today and realized that it was the END OF JULY! I'm not sure what has happened to June but it is gone as is July for the most part.

I am a slacker on the posting front. I have no excuse for the lack of posts, but a promise to try and do better. Here are some of our summer highlights....

Jumping on the Tramp with the sprinkler (until the 90 mile winds blew it over the fence)

Staying cooled off while eating popcorn and watching a show with friends

Enjoying the first sparkler on 4th of July

A trip to Minnesota to enjoy one of their 10,000 lakes, the beach and friends

Lego Land

Nickelodeon Universe and Mall of America

Avalon Turning 8 Months

Nine Months

And today 10 Months.

We have also.....

  • had a flooded basement
  • enjoyed Gymnastic Classes
  • rode lots of miles on our bikes
  • eaten our fair share of ice cream
  • learned to crawl, pull-up and climb the stairs
  • enjoyed lots of time with our friends
  • taken walks to the library
  • jury duty all of July
  • enjoyed our first dance class
  • been sick on and off this summer
  • been getting ready for a Gymnastics Meet
  • and are currently taking swimming lessons.

So there you have our summer in a nut shell. Hopefully there will be some time before school to slow down and breath!

Friday, May 30, 2008

"F" is for...Family

That is right a FAMILY picture! It has been 5 long years since we had one taken and I now know why. Getting the outfits together, hair cuts, everyone happy and clean and most of all no bumps or bruises in plain sight, is a NIGHTMARE. It had to be done though, so we attempted and after a reschedule due to our wonderful weather here in Iowa. Our pictures are viewable on this http://www.feelingthephoto.blogspot.com/ photo blog. So go here and check out our fake smiles and chub.

Erica Grover, a friend and very talented photographer took our pictures and did an amazing job!!! I feel very lucky she was able to fit us in for a session, she is in high demand. Thanks Erica for the wonderful memories!!!!

Monday, May 26, 2008

"G" is for...Graduation

Anali with her teachers, Mrs McEntee & Mrs Tekippe
Anali is officially done with Pre-School and off to Kindergarten. Her Pre-School had an adorable little Graduation ceremony, complete with caps and diploma's.

Anali receiving her diploma

It was neat to see all the little songs and such that she had learned in the past year and most of all to see how proud she was of herself. Time has sure gone fast and I cannot believe that she is starting school. What will I do without her around during the days next year?

Graduation March

We are so proud of our little girl and can't wait to see what the years ahead bring. Congratulations Anali!!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

"3" is for...a 3 year old boy.

Well Aden (aka Superman, Big Brother, Spiderman, Googer, and Binky Boy) made it to another birthday and as usual was spoiled much more than needed. He has been into superheroes lately and his birthday was a true reflection of this latest craze.

Aden started the birthday celebration out with a new Superman shirt - so we can now finally take off the old Superman tanktop and get it in the wash.
He decided that he wanted to go to the park for his birthday and have McDonalds for lunch. The adults picked up Panera sandwiches and salads and then we picked up Happy Meals for Aden and Anali. The kids had a blast enjoying one of the first really nice days of 2008 and spent a little too much time in the sun, as evidenced by the rosy glow to their noses and arms.

We then had present time and Aden was spoiled with lots of superhero clothes, books, swords, etc. Everything that a little boy loves! He finished off the presents with a little treasure hunt that led him to a motorized jeep. It was a great capping point to a fun celebration.

The party ended with a Superman cake (go figure) and the day's activities wore the kids down enough to ensure they were fast asleep at a decent hour.

The next year for Aden is sure to bring many more wonderful memories and adventures!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

"W" is for...Whirlpool

So anyone who knows me, knows that I am HORRIBLE at laundry. If you have ever caught me in the midst of my endless laundry piles I will often say "I can wash OR dry OR fold OR put away, but I can't do all of them at the same time". This is so true even now, but I have to share with you the love affair I have with my Whirlpool Washer.

On our recent trip to Utah I realized just how much I missed it. We were gone for 2 weeks and obviously had to do several loads of laundry at several different places along the way. This is when I realized how much I LOVED my washer and dryer. At home I never had to worry that something had come clean. Or that the clothes needed an extra 10 minutes of dry time or washed again because the soap was still clumpy all over in our clothes, or not clean.

I am one of those people who most often makes bad decisions on big ticket items. Therefore resulting in buyers remorse and hating the object every time I use it wishing it were different. Not this time. Determined not to make yet another bad decision, I started researching. I polled friends, family, neighbors, searched stores, pondering what I wanted. I finally decided on the Whirlpool Duet Sport with pedestals and thus began my love affair. Not with laundry, but with clean.

I am amazed that I can put my kids chocolate, koolaide, spaghetti stained shirts in the washer and they come out sparkling clean. Avalon the queen of blowouts has not ruined one outfit yet thanks to my washer. The dryer is wonderful as well. My clothes don't seem to be as wrinkled and dry in a mere 23 minutes and seem to smell all that much better. Oh and did I mention the entertainment it provides for the kids. My kids think it is better than TV. They will watch most of a 54 minute cycle while I fold clothes, watching for their clothes as they turn about. All this and it is SUPER energy efficient, what more could a girl want? So may I say if you are in the market for the most AMAZING laundry experience, buy a Whirlpool Duet Sport.....you will not be disappointed.

So here is a big hug and kiss to my laundry pair. I may not like to use them, but when I do it's a job well done on their part.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

"S" is for...Six Months

Avalon is six months....what???? I don't know where the time has gone? I know every one says that, but I really don't know. I think number 3 makes time go faster somehow. I hate to admit it, but I am not sure of the last picture I took of Avalon and I have yet to write anything down on her calendar. How sad, sad, sad! Hopefully my time blogging will make up for that. So here is to our baby at six months.

Avalon has taken the "best baby" award in our family. She has turned into a great sleeper and a super happy baby most of the time. She is sitting all by herself and has done so for a couple of months now. However in the rolling over department she has not mastered that skill yet and I really don't think she will. You don't have to know how to rollover to be successful in life, right?She loves, loves, loves to watch her brother and sister and be right where all the action is. Anali is the only person that can make Avalon laugh on demand and it is so cute. Avalon is not stingy in the smile department. She smiles all the time, if she is not smiling she is drooling. She had her check-up and I was surprised to see that she was still on the charts in the chunk department. She weighed in at a whopping 19 pounds 4 ounces. that is 10 ounces heavier than Anali at six months and we thought she was chunky. Avalon has several nicknames right now and seems to answer to Chunky Monkey, Princess, Smiley, Miss Jade and Baby. She is a wonderful blessing in our lives!!!! Her personality shines through more each day and I am loving getting to know her!!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

"N"...is for Name

Ok I know you all might be getting bored of the photos and stories from our trip, but I feel that I have to document......so here we go.
Monte and I have always wanted to name one of our children after Grandma Dudley, but was afraid of the problems a child with the name "LULA" may encounter. We finally got creative and came up with the name Avalon. This fit our "A" tradition and was connected to Grandma. She has lived on the farm since she was little....a farm that her father, my Great Grandfather homestead. A small section of land that he homestead he eventually gave to the Community. When the land was given they decided to let my Great Grandfather name the town. He decided on the name "Avalon" which means beautiful land. Now anyone that has been to Avalon would for sure have to question his name as sage brush and red dirt hills in my book come far from beautiful, but I think maybe he saw what it could be. Even though Avalon is past it's prime, there is still a few little places around town and we thought it would be fun to take some pictures with Avalon and her namesake town.