Friday, December 31, 2010

A very toddler Christmas, part 4

Christmas morning... the main event! Poor Peter spent the early part of the morning in the Edward Hospital ER, so we dragged out the present-opening process much longer than we Evanses normally do. We did this in the hope that Peter & Corey wouldn't miss too much of the fun while the doctors tried their darndest to figure out what was causing his fussiness and rash. "Generic virus" was about all the doctors could come up with. Anyway....

First, we opened stockings.

Then, we let the little girls open a couple of presents, play for a while, eat breakfast, and play for a little while more. Sonia got her big present-- a play kitchen! Charlotte helped show Sonia how to play with it.

Charlotte was oh-so-helpful with opening presents.... Sonia wasn't wildly interested in tearing into gifts, but she was definitely watching and taking notes for next time.

It was a very Voltron Christmas for Jordan.... We remembered that he used to have a Voltron bedspread when we were growing up, so when Niki saw a Voltron thumb drive and I saw a Voltron t-shirt, we couldn't resist!

Charlotte was so excited about her new Tag Jr. books from Grandma JoJo & Grandpa Spike!

Sonia got her very first Barbie doll! It's a fun bath toy Barbie. She's also sitting in her beloved new comfy chair from Grandma JoJo and Grandpa Spike.

Once Petey and Corey got home from the hospital, Petey got to rock in his new rocking chair! He was happier than he looks in this picture, I promise.

More to come.... Just one more Christmas post, I promise!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

A very toddler Christmas, part 3

We celebrated Petey-Pie's first birthday a couple of weeks late with chocolate cupcakes (baked by cool Uncle Jordan). Peter didn't eat much of his cupcake, but he did have a lovely time smashing and smearing it all over his tray.

Charlotte, Sonia, and Peter spent some fun time playing with buttons. Peter shook a closed container full of them, and Sonia & Charlotte sorted the buttons into margarine containers with slots cut in the top. Auntie Niki has the best ideas for keeping toddlers busy and happy!

Charlotte loves Grandpa Spike!

We took the kids to the arboretum to check out the same Enchanted Railroad that Sonia saw the week before. Charlotte loved watching all the trains going around the tracks (especially Thomas the Tank Engine!), and Peter kept happily waving to each choo-choo as it chugged past.

Sonia loved the trains as much as the first time she saw them-- especially because she got to snuggle with Grandma JoJo while checking everything out.

One of the best things about this Christmas was that Sonia's Uncle Jordan (my little brother) got to come. Unfortunately, his wife, Sonia's Aunt Jessica, wasn't able to join us.... We missed her a ton! But it was still very nice for Sonia to spend some quality time with her uncle. This video doesn't even begin to capture the ridiculous amounts of giggling that Uncle Jordan was able to elicit from his nieces and nephews, but it's a start:

Like father, like son....

Jordan is so great with kids!

To be continued....

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

A very toddler Christmas, part 2

In between naps, meals, diaper changes, baths, and other boring business, we had a lot of fun! One evening before dinner, Niki set both the girls up with a bin of dried beans each, and they played for at least a half hour (maybe it was more like 45 minutes). Sonia and Charlotte had a blast!

As usual, the cat door (that my dad installed in the door going down to the basement a couple of years ago) provided hours of entertainment.

The kids enjoyed playing on the air mattress in the basement where Jordan slept (thanks for being such a good sport, Jordan!!).

Look! I actually made it into a picture! That's one of the great things about having my mom & sister (who are both great photographers) visiting....

At one point, Petey tried to make a break for it in the Big Red Van....

We met up with the playgroup at the Nichols Library drop-in craft time, and wackiness ensued.

Niki played Petey's favorite game, "Roll the Baby".

To be continued....

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

A very toddler Christmas, part 1

Phwew-- we are tired! We just finished up having a ridiculous amount of fun during this past week when my side of the family came to visit us and celebrate a very white Christmas in Lisle. The sheer number of smiles, tears, diapers, naps, feeding, playing, screaming, and dancing involved in a Christmas with three kids under the age of three is amazing.... but it is SO worth it.

Sonia had such a fabulous time hanging out with our visitors: my parents (Grandma Jojo & Grandpa Spike), my brother (Uncle Jordan), my sister & her husband (Aunt Niki and Uncle Corey), and my niece & nephew (Charlotte & Peter). By the end of the visit, Sosini could say most everyone's name, and she overcame her stranger-danger anxiety within an hour of each person's arrival. Home field advantage had a big part to play in that!

Every time my sister and I get our children together, it gets more and more fun. Niki has covered some of the antics on her blog here and here, but there is plenty more to share! The very first day that everyone was in Illinois, we took the kids to Little Monkey Bizness to meet up with our friends, Toni & Sami, and go bananas.

More to come in future posts....

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Sonia visits the Enchanted Railroad

This past Friday, Sonia and I went with our playgroup to check out the Morton Arboretum's set-up of model trains called the "Enchanted Railroad". Sosini had so much fun!

First, I got her all dressed up in her new jean skirt, the coolio red top that her Auntie JLo gave her (thank you!!!), and the white sweater that I originally crocheted for her cousin Charbunkle.

Look at these awesome trains, Mama!!

Sami, Sosi, Evan, and Johanna had fun standing up on a viewing platform to see the trains from a different angle. The sun streaming in the windows made picture-taking a bit challenging!

I didn't take many pictures of the trains, but here's one shot of a Morton Salt-themed train.

This was such a cool experience... We might have to visit again before the exhibit ends in early January! Who's with us?

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

A fun visit and a sleep update

The Great Sosini and I had such a lovely day.... Our friends, Jennifer and Kyle, drove all the way to Lisle to play and go out to lunch to our favorite greasy-spoon diner, Granny's. Sonia was already in a fantastic mood before they arrived, but check out how happy she was once she caught sight of JLo and Handsome Kyle:

Just look at this awesome little dude! Kyle is 7 months old and already sitting up, crawling, pulling up, and cruising. He has such a sweet little smile.

Sonia was so fascinated by Kyle.... She wanted to sit right by him, and several times, she tried to give him toys. She also tried to steal some toys from him, but when I admonished her gently, she instantly backed off. Sosini got so tanked up that she was running around in circles, showing off. Goof!

"Hey, Mom! Look who I found! Can we keep him?"

"You look a little hungry.... You want a bottle?"

"While your mommy feeds you, I'll feed MY baby."

"Maybe I'll feed myself, too! Drat-- this bottle seems to be defective."

Thanks for making the trek southwest, Jennifer and Kyle! It was fun to see you!

SLEEP UPDATE: The first week of sleep re-training was bumpy and full of ups and downs. But Sonia is already sleeping better (thank you, Dr. Ferber!), and everyone is getting more sleep. I know we have more hard work ahead of us, but I wanted to say thank you to everyone for all of their support!

Monday, December 13, 2010

19 months young: a state of the baby address

Sosinini is 19 months old.... She is such a big girl! Our little cuckoo bird eats with a spoon pretty well, climbs on EVERYTHING, helps clean up, and giggles like it's her job. She also has been going through an extremely rough patch in terms of sleep. The combination of having at least two colds plus a sinus infection and traveling for Thanksgiving threw a wrench in her sleeping patterns. This past week has been consumed by sleep training (re-training?), and I think she's getting back on track.

How can pajamas this cute (thank you, Grandma JoJo!) not make a kid want to sleep like Rip van Winkle?

Despite the sleep problems, we've had a good time over this past week since the last time I posted. I didn't take a ton of pictures, though, so this is the only one I have to share. We hosted our play group's Christmas party, and the kids surprised us by posing nicely for a group picture. Sonia wore a hand-me-down dress from cousin Charlotte-- I think she looks like Santa Claus & Mrs. Claus's daughter! I wish she had let me put the matching Santa hat on her....

Sonia can't wait to see Grandma JoJo, Grandpa Spike, Uncle Jordan, Aunt Niki, Uncle Corey, Charlotte, and Peter this Christmas.... Funfunfunfun!