Sunday, March 29, 2009

Fiona Birthday Post #2

Last Monday, on Fiona's actual birthday, Wendy and I took her out for a very special dinner. The three of us headed to Rainforest Cafe. On the way there, Wendy and I talked about how it was the first time just the three of us went out in a very long time. Fiona definitely enjoyed the quality time with her Mom and Dad. She also enjoyed the restaurant, with all the pretend animals that move, though she preferred to stay a safe distance from most of them.

Dessert was memorable as well, as we all split the Volcano - a pile of brownies, vanilla ice cream, whipped cream, chocolate and caramel sauce, with a lit sparkler on the top. As you can see from the photos below, Fiona was mesmerized. She loved every bit of it, and I loved how she would taste different parts and describe it:

"Mmm, it has cake!" (brownies)
"There's cream in it!" (whipped cream)
"SYRUP!" (caramel sauce)
After dinner we went home and Fiona opened presents from her parents, which included a Peter Pan DVD & a Disney Princess Look & Find book. These added nicely to the great gifts she got from the party goers and from her MN family. Thanks to all - look for Fiona's thank you card arriving at a mailbox near you!
Fiona's birthday shirt.

Opening a present from Godfather/Uncle Pat & Aunt Mary

And another from Grandma & Grandpa.

Here we are walking around Rainforest Cafe. Notice the grip Fiona has on my shirt - that was tightened anytime we approached an animal.

And sometimes she gave up on the grip and just went for an escape. Bad red-eyed tree frog!

Ahhh....The Volcano....You Will Eat It....

Happy Birthday, Fiona! Love Mom & Dad.

Working hard on her thank you cards a few days later.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Fiona Birthday - Post #1

It's been almost a week since we celebrated Fiona's 3rd Birthday (and for those of you keeping track at home, next up on the birthday list is Casey - April 19th!!). We had a lovely party for Fi, Chicago family and friends filled the townhouse and we all chowed down on Lou Malnati's pizza - fantastic stuff. Here's a slew of pictures from the day of the party!

Fiona didn't want to pose in her birthday outfit, this was the best picture we got. She did enjoy twirling around with her skirt on.

The kids eating their pizza.

Fiona being serenaded...

Her Princess cake.

One of my favorite pics, though a bit blurry. Fiona and her friend Elizabeth having a laugh. When I look at their faces, I can't help but smile myself.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Fiona Video

Three years ago tonight, Wendy and I were getting ready for Fiona's arrival. Little did we know how wonderfully our lives were about to change!

Monday night we will be taking her out for a nice dinner, just the three of us. On Sunday we had a birthday party with some friends and family, and we watched this video. Fiona loved the attention, and laughed at herself throughout. Can you believe how little she used to be?!?!



What a great picture... Our two girls are growing up sooo fast! Today marked Nora's 5 month birthday, and Monday is Fiona's 3rd Birthday! They are absolute best friends, without a doubt. If Nora is awake, Fiona always wants to be around her. If she hears Nora wake up on the baby monitor, she wants to be the first to run up and say good morning! The same with Nora - as soon as Fiona walks in the room, Nora's eyes light up and she starts 'talking' to her sister.
Wendy and I are looking forward to a very eventful and fun Spring and Summer. Fiona cannot get enough time outside, and so we have our new Joovy Caboose double stroller ready to take them both on walks to the many parks around Vernon Hills. And when we're not outdoors, we'll be checking off Nora's many milestones. She is ready to roll over any day now. And somehow, we lost track of how much she has grown - she's down to 2 naps a day already, and suddenly it's time to bust out the rice cereal and baby food!
Here's another photo of the girls, decked out for St. Patrick's Day:

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Save the drama for the mama

After I had Fiona and returned to work, my sister-in-law Natalie gave me a warning on mothering that I still think about. She told me that Fiona would likely act up after seeing me come home from work. At first I thought it wouldn't happen, but it did--she was mad or frustrated at me and it showed. Save the drama for the mama. My second return to work was no different, except I knew to expect the drama this time.

As a new nurse I had to attend hospital orientation this week--Monday through Friday for 8+ hours a day. I went from being at home with Fiona for 10 months to only seeing her for 2-3 hours a day this week. Although it is temporary, she still felt the effects of that and certainly acted out for me during those hours. We have had plenty of crying, whining, screaming, pleading, and other assorted drama. Through it all, she has been great for my Mom while I was gone and has had some really sweet moments taking care of Nora.

I know once we all get into a routine again it will all go smoothly and I also know its normal for her to act up during this change. I just keep reminding myself of Natalie's warning and paying extra attention to our firstborn. If I can get her through moving, the big girl bed, a new house, and a little sister, I am pretty sure I can get her through this. Even if I get to see the extra sassy side of Fiona more often.

She is, after all, Jim Boldischar's daughter. ;)

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

4 month stats

Miss Nora was at the doctor today for her 4 month check-up. She did great--she smiled and cooed at her doctor and only cried a little for the shots. I really hate the shots part and was grateful to have Jim there with me. Funny enough, I could give a bunch of shots, just can't watch my own kids get them.

Anyway, here are the stats of our growing girl:

Weight: 18lbs 4oz (oh yes, that is 97th percentile)
Length: 24.5 inches (50th percentile)
Head: 17 inches (97th percentile)

Random Nora facts at 4 months just for kicks:

-She has settled into a nice routine of taking three naps a day, usually 1+ hour at a time, and all in her crib
-Drinks 6-8oz bottles, usually 4 times a day
-Is really close to rolling over, but not quite there yet
-Loves to hold toys in her hands and bring them to her mouth; we think she is going to get teeth early (her doctor does too now)
-Enjoys her Daddy playing peek-a-boo, Mommy singing, and just about anything Fiona does
-On occasion sleeps through the night, but mostly she wakes up a couple of times a night when her pacifier falls out (we are working on this one)

Fiona will be going for her 3 year appointment in a couple of weeks--stay tuned for her stats. I doubt we will see those same percentiles. :)

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Return of the nurse

Tomorrow begins yet another new adventure in my life--I am starting a new job.

To be honest, in the beginning of 2008 I would have never believed you if you told me what would happen in our lives over the remainder of that year. I would have laughed and cried at the thoughts of quitting my beloved job Methodist Hospital, leaving family and friends, moving to another state, being a pregnant stay-at-home Mom, and delivering a baby in an unfamiliar hospital. Nora was planned, the rest was unexpected.

The past ten months taught me a lot of things, mostly how to be patient and supportive. I enjoyed staying home with Fiona and am very thankful for the opportunity to have done it. I know that she did so well with last year's changes because I was with her every step of the way and we are closer because of it. Somehow she blocked out the memories of me working and it has taken some time for her to get comfortable with the idea of it all. We'll see how she takes it tomorrow when I'm not here; luckily she has Nonnie to play with all day!

As for me, once a Labor and Delivery nurse, always a Labor and Delivery nurse. I am looking forward to getting back on the saddle and am hoping the new hospital will eventually make me half as happy as the last one did. I can remember the perks of working (aside from the paycheck): eating warm meals uninterrupted, listening to non-kid music in the car, using parts of your brain that require schooling, chatting about things other than princesses and play doh, and coming home to your loved ones after missing them all day.

Off to work I go.