Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Upward Cheerleading

Isabelle is on an Upward Cheerleading team for the 4th year. She really likes cheerleading and is great at it. Upward is a non-competitive league through church. Her team is called Stomp and the coach is the same coach we had last year (Erin). We actually requested to have her as a coach again this year because she is really good with the girls. Practices are on Monday evenings and games are on Saturdays throughout January and February. At the end of the season, there will be an awards ceremony.

We all went to watch Isabelle during this weekend's game. It was at a church we hadn't been to yet, the First Presbyterian Church in Grove City.

View from our seats

Fun times
Seth brought his friend "Brownie" along

This is the cheer called "Yell":

This is one of the half-time cheers:

After each game, the coach gives out stickers which are rewards for the girls. Each girl receives one sticker per game, with the goal of collecting each color of sticker by the end of the season. Each color represents a different quality. This week, Isabelle received the sticker for Leadership. The coach said Isabelle is always a leader of the team and makes sure that all the girls are set to start a cheer, and that Isabelle does that in a respectful way. Yes, Isabelle is truly a leader!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Unexpected Night Out

Shane received a nice, unexpected surprise at work - 4 tickets to a Blue Jackets game!

The Columbus Blue Jackets is our NHL (hockey) team.  This was the first time to a game for all of us. They were playing against the Nashville Predators. With only 4 tickets, we were fortunate that Parker was free to get in!

We headed to Nationwide Arena downtown on this cold night.

Our seats were excellent!

There was a lot of noise!

Parker had a good time sitting on Daddy's lap eating Cheetos

View from our seats
While we enjoyed watching the hockey action, we also enjoyed seeing the "ice girls" sweep the ice throughout the game and the Zamboni prepping the ice. At one point there was a remote-controlled blimp-shaped balloon that hovered over our heads, threatening to drop some sort of bag with a prize in it. It ended up dropping the prize in a different section, but it was fun to watch. Parker made new friends with the woman sitting in front of us. He kept tapping her back so she would look at him. He also flirted with the woman behind us who had a cell phone he was interested in. It was a fun night for this family of 5!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Seth's 6th Birthday Party

Seth's birthday party was held at Galaxy Games & Golf in Columbus.We had our own party room and Seth got a balloon and a birthday crown.

This was the first time we've had a party for Seth where we've invited friends instead of just family. Just one classmate was able to come, but Seth was really happy with that one classmate, who is Garrett. Seth has talked about Garrett since school started and about how Garrett is his friend. One of the first things I remember hearing about Garrett was how tall he is. Seth would stretch his arm up way above his head and say that Garrett was THAT tall. The first time I met Garrett was at the YMCA and yes, Garrett really is very tall! And the first thing that caught my eye was that he has red hair like Seth. No wonder they are friends!

Garrett is really crouching down to Seth's level here!
Also at the party were our neighbors Dylan and Morgan, cousins Jacob, Jennifer and Jessica, grandparents Diane and Clyde and Aunt Cathy and Uncle Steve.

The kids all had a great time in the Fun Gym and playing video games.

Morgan and Isabelle
Dylan and Seth
Parker joining the fun

Morgan and Seth

Dylan and Seth running around
Morgan, Dylan and Seth

Isabelle in the Fun Gym

The Birthday Boy climbing the rope

 We had pizza, cupcakes and presents to celebrate!

Parker had a good time

Play-Doh ice cream maker from the Witt's

Star Wars puzzle from Dylan and Morgan (Jacob is on the left)

Great photo of Seth! Spongebob Lego set from Garrett

Isabelle reading the birthday cards

LOTS of Play-Doh from Grandma Diane and Grandpa Clyde
Seth received extra tickets to turn in for small prizes and he also got to pick out a birthday prize. He picked a set of plastic swords.

It was a great party!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Seth Turns 6!!

6 seems so much older than 5, doesn't it? It's more than half way to 10 now. Everyone says "time flies" and I keep finding that to be very true as the kids get older.

On Seth's birthday, he did not have school but Isabelle did. This meant a morning of just Seth, Parker and Mommy. We all played together then went to a couple of drive-thrus for lunch. Seth wanted chili from Tim Horton's and chicken nuggets from Wendy's, so we made a stop at both places. While Parker took a nap, Seth and I played chess and checkers. Seth is learning all the moves and pieces in chess and is getting pretty good at it. I, admittedly, am not good at Chess. Seth beat me!

I told him we had 4 surprises for him. It turned out to be 5 surprises. First, Daddy brought home a Darth Vader ice cream cake from Dairy Queen! Seth has been talking about this cake since he went to a friend's birthday party who had an ice cream cake.

Darth Vader ice cream cake

Second, Grandma Barb & Grandpa Steve came to visit! With presents! One "present" Seth opened was his Shaggy figurine (from Scooby Doo) that he left at their house last week. He said Grandma should wrap it since it was his birthday. So, to Seth, Shaggy was surprise #3.

The next surprise was a present from us. It was a Star Wars 3-D puzzle.

Star Wars puzzle from Mommy & Daddy and Leapster game from Grandma & Grandpa

This is the fun card from Aunt Christy.

And last, he had to guess where we were all going to go for dinner. It took a few wrong guesses and a hint, but he finally figured out it was Chuck E. Cheese's! He was so excited he ran all around the room!

Chuck E. Cheese's was a lot of fun! We spent a couple of hours there eating and playing. Surprisingly, Parker really liked this place. It was a big area for him to walk around in and he liked all the lights and noises of the games. He even kept trying to climb up on stage with the animated characters that perform the musical show! I think if the adults that Parker is weary around would dress in large animal costumes, he may just go right to them!

Isabelle & Parker playing a bowling game

A horse-riding game

Parker liked to push the buttons
Driving the Bob the Builder bulldozer
Chuck E. made an appearance!
Thanks for coming with us, Grandpa & Grandma!
 Seth said this was his best day EVER!


Monday, January 9, 2012

Parker's 14-Month Snapshot

Parker hit a few big milestones this past month.
  • He learned to walk on his own! At first he thought it was so fun - he'd walk back and forth between two people and laugh the entire time. He's practically an expert now, though sometimes he tries to walk right over things instead of around them and trips.
  • He has also learned to scoot down the stairs, though sometimes he still stands up at the top of the stairs and tries to walk right down them. So far someone has been there to catch him each time he does that. 
  • Parker is also now able to stand up by himself from a sitting position. He used to just sit and raise his arms up so someone would help him get up. Now he's doing it on his own.
  • He got his first haircut! Thankfully his hair was kept pretty long so he hasn't lost his baby looks.

  • He has a lot of teeth. I haven't been able to count them, but I can certainly see a lot of them.  He's been chewing on things lately, like buttons at the top of his shirt, his blanket and his teething rings. 
  • He doesn't say many words. Usually he'll just say "Mom" or "more" and he babbles a lot. 
  • Parker takes 1 nap a say, usually starting at around 11:00AM or 11:30 and lasting 3 hours. He then goes to bed at night anywhere from 8:00PM to 9:30PM.
  • He has the most adorable giggle. 
  • We discovered that he really likes pasta. 
  • He likes to dance! Isabelle will put on some music and all three kids will dance together. For Parker, it's more of bending his knees so he goes up and down, but he sure likes it. 
Here's a video of some dancing.

  • He still loves go outside. Now he'll grab his shoes and bring them to me when he wants to put them on and go outside.
  • Parker can wear size 4 or 5 diapers and most of his clothes and sleepers are size 18 months. I'm so glad we kept most of Seth's old clothes or we'd be shopping for bigger sizes a lot! His shoes are size 4 and he has rather fat feet, so the shoes have to be really stretchy!
  • He loves to go "bye-bye" in the van. His car seat is now facing forward. This comes in particularly useful when we have a DVD playing in the van on long trips because now he can watch movies too.
  • Parker is still really cautious with adults other than Mommy or Daddy.
  • Baby Einstein movies are still his favorite.

We love our Parker Pie!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

New Years Eve

This New Years Eve, Shane had to work so I took the kids to Englewood to visit Grandpa, Grandma and Aunt Christy. Christy was in town for the holidays so we took this opportunity to visit with her. She bought party hats, noisemakers, masks and necklaces for everyone. All the adults and all three kids stayed up until midnight and saw the ball drop! This is the first year Seth stayed up (he wondered if the ball was a basketball before he saw it).


Red-headed buddies!

This was the third year Isabelle stayed up. The past two years, she was really sad when the ball dropped and the year changed. This year we were determined to not let that happen so we talked about how fun it is to celebrate a new year and look forward to what lies ahead.

Happy - not sad!!

Watching the ball drop. Welcome 2012!

 We blew our noisemakers and hooted and hollered at midnight and Isabelle was excited the whole time, so we were very thankful for that! She now wants to go to Englewood for the next New Year so she's not sad about it. Aunt Christy then took Isabelle and Seth outside to throw confetti!

Our last family photo of 2011! Sorry Daddy had to miss it.

It was a late night, but we all had a lot of fun. Seth was sure to thank Aunt Christy for all the fun party supplies she bought.