Monday, March 31, 2008

Bye To Grandpa Mark & Fern

And so I dropped my Dad and Fern at the airport this afternoon. I so hated to say goodbye, it was really nice having them in town.

I also have to give them a huge THANKS for all the work they did in our yard. We put them to work yesterday and by the end of the day all our plants were pruned (Thanks Fern!), the (old green rusty) laundry poles were gone (Thanks Dad & Hubs!) and now we have a new watering system - and bed for growing veggies. We're so excited - okay, I am so excited.

Next step? Soil delivery. VERY exciting. And then we order up plants, get them into the ground and sit back and watch our backyard become our own little oasis.

So what comes after our garden transformation? A new roof and new kitchen.

Lots of stuff in the works! Stay tuned...

Best Toy Web Site

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Mo Twah Booberry Yoyo Peas

Chase is talking up a storm these days - and she is constantly coming up with new sentences. Her latest? "Mo Twoh Booberry Yoyo Peas." This means, "more cold blueberry yogurt please."

She is getting too good at hide and seek. Maybe that's because there are only so many places to hide downstairs.

And she has fallen in love with puzzles. She can almost complete a 12-piece puzzle by herself, but she still needs hints like, "I think you might be looking for the dog eyes," or "maybe you want the pig's feet."

I finally got her to kick the habit of listening to the Little Einsteins in the car (it was driving me batty!) - she was gifted a "World Playground" CD, which is SO fabulous. It has children's songs from around the world on it - and they don't make you want to hit your head against the wall.

And I am still trying to figure out this whole school thing. Where to send her. When. Yada yada, yada. Now I'm thinking about investigating the Spanish Montessori immersion school they have here. Could be interesting.

Dad and Fern are out visiting - it's so nice to see them! They spent today skiing at Veil. Tomorrow they're helping us do some landscaping - I'm so excited! Huge thanks to them for coming all this way and helping us get our home ship shape.

Friday, March 21, 2008


Steamboat was amazing. Hubs and I decided to pony-up and pay for a sitter for Chase so that I could go snow-shoeing with Renee. We did the actual snow-shoeing in Catamount, just about 10 minutes outside of Steamboat. It was amazing. I love it there - and it was so fabulous to catch up with our friends from London.

I tend to buy new things for Chase when we travel. To keep her busy. This time around, the runaway hit was a wooden train set. Chase played with it continuously. At one point, we looked over and she was actually re-laying the tracks, taking them apart and then putting them back together so the train could go in a different direction.

Chase's actual birthday was filled with lots of presents, a trip to the zoo, a ride in the zoo train (she LOVED it), and a ride on the carousal (she refused to actually ride on any animals and clung to me with all her might).

She also had her 2-year check-up. The one thing that I keep coming back to, which I didn't mention before, is that I told the doctor about her fear of water, but instead of saying, "oh that's normal," or "try this, try that," he told me to go buy an herbal remedy called "rescue remedy" and basically dope her before bath time to take the edge off. Yah, I don't think so. Instead, I sit in the tub and bath all the Einsteins before bathing Chase. I'm sure this too, shall pass.

Her birthday bowling bash is tomorrow. Should be interesting. We're expecting 10 kids total. Who knows how many adults. If everyone shows that's about 30 people. Good thing it's not at our house. Strange thing is I'm a little stressed about it. Given I have coordinated black tie gala events for 100s of people, I keep thinking of things I should be doing, but then I say, "self, you've got to relax, she is just turning 2."

Soccer, meanwhile, is going fabulously. Chase scored three goals today. Okay, so the ball wasn't moving before she kicked it. And it was set just outside the goal (hard to miss).

She is linking three words. She made our dinner last night (manacotti and salad). She took off her clothes (almost all by herself) and put them in the dirty clothes basket.

In honor of her 2-year birthday, I relocated pots and pans to provide her with her own cabinet in the kitchen, complete with dishes, bowls, cups, napkins and utensils. She loves it.

She also LOVES puzzles. We have a wooden, 12-piece, farm puzzle that she can almost put together on her own (clever girl). Hubs was wowed because she was actually looking for each specific piece.

She still adores the Einsteins, although Clifford is moving into the spotlight more and more. Curious George is like an old buddy, as is Elmo.

In other news, Chase was wait-listed (DRAT) at Children's Garden Montessori. She's number 5. I don't know what that means, or how good/bad our chances are... but I'm thinking it might be time to try to figure out something else.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Chase's 2-Year Check-Up

Just returned from her 2-year check up. She has dropped in weight from 60th percentile to 40th percentile. She has grown (of course) and is now up to 95th percentile for length (compared to 90th percentile), and her head cir. is 75th percentile (basically in line with where it has always been). The doctor was not worried about the weight drop.

We discussed her all-day-buffet eating, and he said there are three types of eaters, and all-day-buffet is one, so not to worry. The biggest challenge is to make sure that each time they eat - that each meal represents one food group. Which I haven't been doing - and certainly makes sense.

She has achieved (and surpassed) her 2-year milestones. She had her second Hep-A, which means she's good to go!

The only thing that the doctor indicated a little concern about? Her sleep pattern. At this age, kids should still be napping at least once a day at a regular time, and going to sleep at roughly the same time (give or take a half hour), and sleeping through the night. He said he wasn't concerned that she wasn't getting enough, he was more concerned that as care givers an erratic sleep schedule can be exhausting. The only remedy is to stay in one place and establish a pattern. Hmmm, doesn't sound likely seeing as how we have travel plans for April and May.

The good news, I guess, is that there are no major time zone changes.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Long Time, No Post

Okay, so it isn't like I've had nothing to say. I have. I just haven't had the time.

We spent the week following our trip to Europe getting over colds. All of us had one. We were miserable and no fun to be around. We were going to bed at 8:00 p.m. every night, if we could stay up that late.

Then daylight savings happened. And Chase's sleep schedule is SO messed-up, she didn't fall asleep until around 9:00 p.m. last night, not that we would know, we were both zonked out on either side of her. We woke up at 11:00 - she was fast asleep, nestled between us.

So what else? Well, Chase is gorgeous as always. Pictures from Budapest still to come (when I actually have a few minutes).

Perhaps the biggest hurdle we are facing at the moment is that Chase is terrified of water. It just happened. She hates the bathtub. I took her to the swimming pool yesterday (yes, I got into a bathing suit), and she screamed "no, no, no" the entire time. We spent 15 minutes there and then decided it was not worth the drama - or the trauma.

Today I ventured to the gym, for the first time in TWO years. It was fabulous. I ran for 15 minutes and felt pretty good about myself, because it was (1) the first time in two years, (2) at high altitude and (3) the first time in two years. Oh and it was the first time in two years. And then I went to collect Chase from the childcare facility, only to find her sobbing so hard she couldn't breath. And the childcare guy wasn't even paying attention to her. I wanted to grab him by his 24-hour fitness polo shirt and scream at him "why didn't you page me?" But instead I asked him the question in a calm, yet terse voice. He said, "oh, she'd cry and then stop and then cry and then stop." O-MY-GOSH-MAN. So we're never going back. Even if Chase is unhappy, she never screams like that.

So now it's back to trying to figure out how to get exercise - with her. Maybe we should just make monthly trips to Budapest.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

"Mommy, YAY!" "Daddy, YAY!"

Possibly the cutest thing ever. Chase has started adding "YAY" to words she really likes. And we are lucky enough that mommy and daddy are on that list.

On that note, she is doing a lot more talking these days. Naming everything she sees. I have to remind myself that she doesn't want everything she names, that she is simply naming items to show me how much she knows.

And speaking of our little know it all, while we were in Budapest Chase counted to 10. Yes, that's right. I'm not kidding. She was just counting rocks - and adding the number to each. It was UN-BELIEVABLE.

She also loves singing to herself - and to others. She was singing to Taggart this morning. Super, uber-doober cute.

For The Love Of Travel

So we've finally "settled" back in to Denver. Pictures from our trip will be posted soon.

I have to say this trip to Europe was easily the most difficult trip we've made to date. Why? I think it was because Chase is nearly two. This means she (1) actually realizes she has feelings and wants to do things a certain way, (2) likes to walk in the opposite direction of where we need to go, (3) likes to snack all the time, and (4) is getting way too heavy to carry all-day-long.

We thought we had it all figured out. We have a hip carrier that we carefully placed in the car. And then left it in the car once we got to the airport. By mistake. Or should I say, BIG mistake. We tried to buy a stroller for Chase on three different occasions - and each time Chase shook her head, "no," and arched her back when we tried to place her in it. Hubs even tried not so subliminal methods to influencer her, "see?" he'd say to her (arms burning). "That baby is very happy in his stroller. And look, he can even play with toys and read a book while he's in it." Hubs must have pointed out every stroller he saw on DAY 3. Miss Chase was still adamant she would NOT NOT NOT be one of those happy babies. She was quite happy, thank you very much, being so close to us.

So that aside, she was really an amazing little traveler. Oh, and besides the fact she did not sleep through a single night (and got up the first four to color, read, play), she really did very well. Her parents, on the other hand, were so b-l-e-e-p-i-n-g tired by the end of it, we could barely talk to each other without getting snippy. It didn't help we were both sick out of our heads on the last day and couldn't even hear each other - and couldn't talk any louder because our throats hurt.

But seriously, it was good be out and about again. I found myself with a renewed level of appreciation for our home, our life.

I found there were things I really didn't miss: (1) city air, (2) city playgrounds, (3) rough toilet paper, (4) check out people at the grocery store who are mean, (5) buying things I think are one thing and then finding they are something else (in Budapest I kept meaning to buy yogurt, but ended up with sour cream, quark and something in between. I also wanted to buy milk, but somehow ended up with chocolate milk, cheese that was too strong for Chase to eat, an unidentifiable meat product cut in to slices and sparking water when I wanted still).

But on the bright side of it all, Budapest was really lovely. The weather was warm, the sky was blue. I would, however, compare Budapest to a tired old lady, who used to be exceptionally beautiful, but now has lots of scars. The buildings that were once grand and falling apart. There is little in the way of color (I recall Prague's buildings were all gorgeous terracotta, greens, pale yellows, creams). The streets are larger and straighter (as compared to Prague's winding, cobblestones). Budapest was bigger (sort like how Seattle is to Portland). And there wasn't much in the way of a local art scene (Prague was filled with galleries).

But there was great food (goulash, stuffed cabbage, strudel). And most likely a great night life - although Hubs and I were back at the hotel by 8:30 p.m. each night. If one was young and hip, and without a toddler in tow, one might really enjoy it there.

We were really lucky in the hotel we selected (Hotel Starlight). It was inexpensive and clean. The room was large and had a living room, bedroom and large bathroom. The location couldn't be beat, and there was a playground right down the street that Chase loved. The only down side was that there wasn't a kitchen in the hotel, so we had to fly by the seat of our pants when it came to feeding Chase.

Lessons learned on this trip? We are definitely not doing any "city breaks" again anytime soon. I think from here on out we're going to be resort-bound --- at least for a little while.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008


What a whirlwind adventure our trip to Europe was - we arrived at 6 a.m. on Saturday, after a 10 hour flight, had breakie with our friends the Suni-Andersons, showered and headed out to a pub-"D0." Unfortunately, we were utterly exhausted and forgot our camera, but our friends Isaac and Elaina captured some great shots of Chase with her two friends, Felix and Callia.

Felix, it is worth noting, was born exactly a month before Chase and her mom, Emma (pictured), was one of the people I spent the most time with in the last couple months before Chase was born. We grumbled to each other when our husbands got tired of listening to the aches and pains that come with the third trimester.

It was amazing to see Felix - he was soooo grown up and so handsome. Callia was a beauty as well. Elaina, bless her, made the trip out with Callia and the newest member of their family - her two week old daughter (thank you)!

I do hope all the kiddos can all keep in touch in the years to come.

Oh, and pay no attention to Chase's hair. It was utterly unkempt. The entire time. Both because she refuses to bathe (grubby girl) and because we found ourselves in an environment where there was actually moisture in the air (in Denver, her hair is flat, flat, flat).