Saturday, September 29, 2007

Tough Love

NOTE: The following post is dripping with sarcasm.

There seems to be other babies who are meeting their milestones a little faster than Finn. Because we're good parents, that's not acceptable to us. We've developed a new outlook that requires some more effort on the part of Finn. If he succeeds, great, not only will he have accomplished something, but it'll build his self confidence - and it's never too early to start building self confidence. If he doesn't succeed...well, he's young, he'll have countless hours over the course of many days and weeks to keep practicing and to learn how to deal with failure. Below is a sequence of pictures to illustrate an example of how our new idea works. In this particular instance, Finn is being pressured encouraged to learn how to stand on his own.

Disclaimer: No babies were harmed or even upset during the making of this post.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Apple Fest 2007!

This is the third year now that we've gone to the Apple Festival at Circle K Orchard near River Falls. They have apple picking, great food, a petting zoo, and some extra games for the kids. Below are three pictures of Julia picking apples - the first from 2005 after just turning one, the second from 2006, when she was two, and the third one from yesterday, now three years old.

Finn wanted to get in on the apple picking action too.

Mandy and I got to pose with one child after we finished eating lunch (apple brats, buffalo burgers, corn on cob... Tasty!).

Julia really enjoyed going on a pony ride. When we left she waved a big good-bye to Bullet, the pony she rode on.

One of the games they had was one of those big air filled castles that kids can jump around in. Julia gave it a try and had fun. Here's a video of her experience. It's shot through mesh, so that's why it's a little funny looking.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

School has started!

I've been meaning to write about this for over a week now... I guess that really means school is back in session now and life has gotten even busier!

Julia's preschool career at Rocky Branch Elementary has officially begun! She seems to be enjoying her time at school so far. The first morning of school was a little hectic though. I decided to take the day off and not accept substitute teaching jobs for the day, so that I could see my little girl get on the school bus for the very first time. Sounds lovely, doesn't it? Well, while we were eating breakfast, we got a phone call telling us that we missed the bus! Nice. The bus garage evidently told us the incorrect time for pick-up in the morning. Julia was so excited to ride the bus to school, then we had to come up with a reason why it wasn't going to take her to school on her first day. Not to mention my disappointment in realizing that I wasn't going to see Julia climb on the bus or be able to take that memorable photograph of the momentous occasion. Everything worked out though, as it always does! Finn and I drove Julia to school and took a few pictures of her there.

Because we still wanted that coveted "first time riding the bus picture," Torey took Julia to daycare the next morning in order to see her board the bus. Pretty cute pictures! I still really want to see her do it sometime though. Guess that's just the Mommy wanting to see the first things her babies do! The pictures are good for now though. Hope you enjoy them too!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

My Sister, Attorney at Law

Ok, so it's not official until she gets sworn in, but my sister found out on Friday that she passed the Oregon State Bar exam! Here's the proof. Ember graduated from Willamette University College of Law with a J.D. in May and then took the bar exam in July. I'm extremely proud of her!

And, just in case anyone was hoping for a cute kid's one of Julia after we had gone to Art on the Kinni. The "J" on her face is the start of her name that she had painted on her cheek.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Princess Castle Camp Out!

For her birthday, Julia got a special pop-up princess castle. We told her that she could sleep in it some night in the living room. A few weekends ago we had an evening all planned out - I was going to sleep on the couch in the living room and Julia would sleep in her princess castle. But...the night before it was going to happen Julia had a number of major meltdowns and we threatened to not let her have her princess party the next night if she didn't shape up. The threat did not work and Julia found out it wasn't merely a threat. Fast forward to last weekend - we had been telling her that if she continued going to bed good that we could have the princess party in the living room. This time she came through and the party happened!
Besides just sleeping, Julia and I watched a very special princess movie that Julia had never seen: Beauty and the Beast. She got a little "nervous" (her word) a few times, but otherwise she thoroughly enjoyed herself, as did I. Mandy even made us a special treat of popcorn! Julia thought it was all very cool.
We both had a good night sleep, Julia in her princess castle and me on the couch.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Big boy food!

Finn had an exciting new experience after his nap today. We decided to have him taste some rice cereal! It didn't look like much more than a liquid - Julia thought that was pretty strange. She was VERY excited to help him out with his first "solid" meal. Finn did a pretty good job; we think he swallowed some of it! What do you think of Finn's new Bumbo chair?