Monday, January 31, 2011

Before the Plague: Silly Glasses

Before this house was hit with RSV/cold/flu/ear infection, we had some fun with glasses. Last Wednesday was the Young Women's New Beginnings. The theme was "Seek after these things..." and everyone wore funny glasses. I got out Tom's funny glasses collection to bring them and Celia had some fun trying them on. The last picture is my new all-time favorite picture of the two girls. They're so great.

In plague news: both girls slept really well last night. They both still have terrible coughs, but Celia is off the couch playing and Sabrina's fever is down. So we're out of the super scary zone for the time being.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Celia Dailies: Avoiding Naps

Celia is still sick, but the Amoxicillin has kicked in and she's doing much better. She spent the morning with Taylor at our house while we took Sabrina to the doctor (more on that in a bit) and when we left the house, she had a really wet diaper she wouldn't let us change, she was still wearing her jammies, and her hair was an old messy braid. When we got back, she looked like a transformed tween. She was wearing a dress with pants under it and had a sweet early 90s crimped ponytail. She also had a much better outlook on life. Which meant she was back to trying to avoid her naps (rather than asking for them as she has the past three days). Just today, here are the ways she tried to stall/avoid a nap:

- We told Celia when the movie she was watching was all done, she had to go to bed. When Tom reminded her of that toward the end of the movie, she said: "wait, wait, wait. I never said that." He reminded her again and she said: "What do you mean?" Then she apparently said: "We're on the elevator. And there's Zurg. And there's Jessie." (She was watching Toy Story 2 at the time.) And she kept telling Zurg: "It's okay. You don't have to be afraid of us."

- She was also wearing two tutus. I took her downstairs to put her in bed and told her she had to take off her dancing skirts. She said: "But I have to dance!" and I had to count down from 20 so she could have a chance to dance before I took them off.

- She was just about to get in bed when she decided she needed to wear her watch and hide behind her bedroom door. At this point, I did the "you're in trouble count to three." I said: "Celia, it's time to get in bed. I'm going to count. One. Two..." Then she looked out and said: "No no no. Stop counting. I'm behind the door right now." When I started over she said: "You can't count, I'm behind the door right now!"

And then she took an over 3-hour nap....

Sabrina spent the night with a 101.2 underarm temperature. I did a middle of the night run to the store to get baby Tylenol. (I was there in my jammies with about 30 couples from some holiday ball type occasion. Awesome). Trying to keep Sabrina asleep and bring down her temperature proved to be a very sleepless event for me (though Sabrina slept fine). I was nursing, medicating, and calling the night nurses constantly. When we got into the doctor at 10AM (thank heavens we live in a place where our doctors are open on both Saturday and Sunday!), Sabrina had a rectal temp of 102.6. Her lungs sounded great (no RSV!) and she didn't have any ear infections. The flu test came back negative, but they said that's probably what it is. So, we just have to monitor her and bring her back in if she gets worse or if her temp gets up to 103. She's got a hacky cough just like Celia but she's still a smiley, happy baby (despite literally burning my hand last night when feeding her she was so hot, poor girl).

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Celia: Really Sick

Yes, that's the saddest picture (previous post) you've seen of Celia. I know. Well, the verdict is two ear infections and RSV. Pray that Sabrina will stay healthy. Pray that Celia will get better. She's a mess of no eating, no sleeping, and lots of crying and pain. Poor girl.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Celia Dailies: Sick

Celia is sick. Nasty cough, runny nose, zombie eyes. Poor kid. She stopped eating her dinner on Wednesday. She told Tom she couldn't eat it because her nose was "happening."

- Last night I put a humidifier in her room. When she asked: "What's that?" this is how the rest went:
Me: It's called a humidifier. It makes steam and it will help your cough.
Celia: And my sneeze?
Me: And your sneeze.
Celia: And my laugh?

- She woke up this morning saying: "I need to put some clothes on." I went down there and she was wrapped in her blankies and her jammies were in a pile next to her. Wonder when that happened... Then she put on a t-shirt and capris and refuses to put on anything warmer because she says she's hot (even though the heat hadn't turned on yet so it was 59 in here). And yet, no fever.

- Celia's been telling me: "You're the best Mommy I know."

- She commented on Tom's sweater on Sunday: "Oh Daddy, these are the greatest pockets ever known!"

- We were out driving last weekend and we fishtailed a little on a traffic circle (Tom was driving, so we were fine) and we heard Celia from the back seat say: "that was... AWESOME!"

In BIG Celia news, she got her poopies out in the toilet TWO times on Wednesday. Her choice. She would get close and then say she needed to sit on the potty. We think it might be because we told her she could bounce and cry on the potty. So she sat there, screaming and crying and bouncing until they came out. Poor girl. But we're SO PROUD!

Sabrina, so far, has seemed to avoid the illness. Though everytime she cries, I just feed her. I'm not taking any risks.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

You know you're Alaskan when...

1) Your Christmas lights are up and on from September to April -
We didn't put ours up until just after Thanksgiving, but they are still up and on. Tom said he'd wait out the neighbors. Apparently this is more than just not wanting to put them up or take them down in the snow. A couple of years ago, the city had a "City of Lights" campaign where they ran full-page newspaper ads urging people to turn on their Christmas lights during the whole dark season. Because of energy shortages and such, the campaign died. The woman who told me this suggested a new campaign: "The LED City of Lights."

2) The best meal you've ever had was in a strip mall -
Strip mall restaurants are "the thing" up here. And they are often the best. Thanks to cousins Tami and Mark who got us a Gift Certificate and to cousins Taylor and Travis who babysat the girls, Tom and I went out to eat on Saturday night to a really nice strip mall restaurant. It was HEAVEN. We just kept ordering more food. We started with the Samosas and the Dim Sum Sampler. Then we split two bowls of soup: a chicken curry and a five-spice sweet potato. And finished off with the Rib eye steak. All of it complemented our lychee lemonade (with free refills) nicely. I don't think Tom and I have ever gorged ourselves on $70 worth of food. It was worth it and I can't wait to go back.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Celia Dailies: Getting Old

Celia has been very witty as of late. I wish I could remember everything she says, but I'm usually not in a position to run to the computer to write it down. She's seeming so old:

- Yesterday, frustrated with the usual holding poop in, I was trying to get to the bottom of the fear (as I always am). I said: "Celia, why do you hold these in? When the poopies say: 'Celia, I want out!' why don't you let them out?" She looked at me like I was crazy and said: "The poopies want to talk?"

- Today, she was wearing a headband (the stretchy kind. She likes to find them and put them on herself. She wears them like sweatbands.) She took it off her head, put it on her arm, and said: "Look, I have a headband hula hoop on my arm." When I told her that was silly, she said: "Yeah. Headbands are for wearing when you do something" like that explained it...

- We're redoing our bathroom downstairs (will post on this when we're done) and a few days ago, Celia was helping Tom put in the new toilet paper dispenser. Halfway through, she turned to Tom and said: "you're not making any sense!"

- Yesterday, she told me that she needed her slippers on her feet. "My feet are so, so cold. They're like Popsicles!"

- This morning, Celia was playing with her Duplo cars and tracks. The tracks were broken and she wanted me to fix them. And she said: "You're a mommy. Means you can work it!"

- Celia really is kind of obsessed with the fact that the red folding chairs are Mommy's and the black ones are Daddy's. Not sure where she got this idea. Anyway, as she always does, when I sat down in the black chair yesterday, she said: "No. no no. That's daddy's chair. You want to sit in that one. It's mommy's." When I told her that we all share, she looked at me and said: "yeah. whatever."

- Celia's really good at pretending. Any random character from any tv or movie she has seen will appear with us sometime throughout the day. I have to pay attention more when she's watching tv so I recognize the minor characters from dinosaur train when they come to play with us later that day. This morning, she was talking to a random doggie from her high chair. "Doggie. Doggie. Where are you going? Come back. Oh well!"

- I've gotten kind of addicted to buying Timbuk2 bags on clearance at REI (okay, I only bought 2 but this bags are amazing. Look them up. They're made of ballistic nylon and are made to last a million years. I digress...). The one Tom came home with for me yesterday has a tag that says: "get your chi on." I read it out loud and Celia said: "Huh. Are you getting your chi on Mommy? You getting your chi on?"

- Just now, we were talking about our family. Celia pointed to Sabrina, herself, and me and said: "1, 2, 3 girls. And we're missing a boy named Daddy."

- She frequently tells us about numbers that are flying through the air.

- When she walks backwards, she sometimes puts her arms out and says: "I going backwards. I like a dragonfly!"

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Sabrina ROLLS!

First, she rocked. Now, she rolls. Sabrina rolled from her back onto her tummy four times yesterday. We knew this would happen kind of early because, since birth, she had preferred to be on her side. She sleeps propped between two rolled blankets on her side. (She hates tummy time, so we knew she wouldn't be rolling the other way anytime soon.) And since she was about a month old, whenever we put her on her back, she ends up like this:

And make that a total of five times that she's rolled... she just did it right next to me while I was writing this and then smiled at me like I should be proud. So proud, Sabrina. So proud. (And now she's on her tummy and mad...)

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Baby It's Cold Outside

-7.8 degrees, to be exact. Coldest it has been since we've lived here.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Celia Dailies: Bigger

- Celia's trying to make comparisons. She's learning that Daddy is taller than Mommy and she is taller than Sabrina. Yesterday morning when I went to get her in bed she said: "Hey! Look who's smaller! It's Buzz! (Buzz Lightyear action figure). He's smaller than Sabrina!" (this excited her because everything else we've been talking about is bigger than Sabrina.)

- Also, the first thing I hear on the monitor in the morning now is always the same exact thing, same inflections and everything: "Mommy, oh mommy. I waited til seven. Yodalayhehoo!" Yes, she yodels after that sentence every morning because she sleeps with Jessie, the yodelin' cowgirl. So when I go down there, she holds up Jessie and says: "It's Jessie! She's a cowgirl! Yodalayhehoo!"

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Celia Dailies: Dinky

- Yesterday, I was trying to put Celia's footie pajamas back on after changing her diaper. She started freaking out and saying: "No, no! I have to dink my feet first!" I said I didn't know what that meant, but go ahead. She pulled her foot to her nose and said: "Ew! Dinky!" I said "Oh! Stinky!" and she said: "No, Dinky. Grandma say Dinky. Grandma say that." I said: "Does she say 'ew stinky'?" "No, she say Dinky. Ew Dinky!"

- Celia forgot how to say "forgot." She always says: "Got For" - "No, Mommy, you got for my milk!"

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Dear Sabrina

I was realizing that you are three months old now and I should write your updates in your baby book before you get any older. But then I realized I don't know how to tell you who you are in just those few lines. There's so much more I want to say. I'll start with what the book wants to know: you eat great. You sleep 11-13 hours and eat after sleeping 9-11 hours. If you wake up during the night, you will always fall back asleep if we stick a binky in your mouth. You still listen to the sounds of a rushing river when you sleep (left over from your colicky days). You like to coo and ooh for us when you're happy. You smile constantly.

But what the baby book can't fit on its few little lines is the fact that you don't even seem like a baby. You are so aware of everything. You'll smile at anyone that will say hi to you. But you're keyed into your family. You get excited when Daddy comes home. We go down to see him and you are all smiles. You watch your sister be crazy. And I still often find the two of you on the floor smiling at eachother when I get out of the shower. Though I've been told you can't see farther than a few feet, if I put you on your blanket in the living room and walk into the kitchen, you always bend your head all the way back so you can smile at me. When we talk to you, you get so excited, your eyes water and you start talking back in excited "oohs."

You suck on your hand until it's red and puffy.

You're super ticklish. And you laugh when we tickle you. When you're tired, you sort of smile and grunt.

You seem so appreciative. I always feel like you realize how much work it is to be a mom (doubt you do, but you sure seem like it). You like to stop eating and look up at me and talk and laugh.

In the evenings, when you're starting to get tired and you're not sure what to do with yourself, you love watching the marbles go through Marbleworks.

So even though you're only three months old, you seem so much older. And so much more aware. Even if you can't figure out why the blanket is in your face that you just accidentally grabbed and pulled up. And the good news is, you're ears are starting to stick out like they should (to be in this family). So now you're one of us. And we're proud. You're the best little baby around. And we love you.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

2010: In Summary

Dear Friends and Family,

2010 in Alaska has been a good one. Since we've lived in Alaska over a year now, we're officially Alaska residents. This means in 2011, we can go dip-netting for salmon (with a household limit of 55 fish!) and receive the Permanent Fund Dividend (money from the oil companies... around $1200 for each of us). We've survived a winter here, so we can be referred to as "sourdoughs" and we actually loved it. The sky is always so beautiful in the winter and all the snow make the holidays so festive. March and April can get hard when Spring has hit "outside" (the term Alaskans use for the lower 48) and it's still snowing here. But, as Alaskans say: "The winters are hard, but the summers are worth it." We spent our summer camping, hiking, and exploring the awesome bike trails. In the evenings, we would take rides sometimes around town. Celia loves the bike trailer. Tom's also been bike commuting to work. He plans to commute all winter, but his studded bike tires have been on backorder for about a month now, so the biking has been put on hold until those arrive. Moose are a part of life up here. In the winter, we get them in our driveway frequently and you can see them around town. In the summer, it's less frequent, but then the bears are out (although we've only seen one). All of this is to say, I don't think we'll be leaving Alaska anytime soon.

We did take some trips outside to go to some weddings and attend a reunion with Marel's family on the coast. We also had visits from both families. Marel's family came up in March and we traveled around and saw some beautiful sites. Tom's whole family came up for a visit in the summer and we saw some glaciers.

In other news, Marel spent most of the year pregnant and miserable until October 5 when Sabrina Carys was born (2 weeks early, but not soon enough). It was a labor that lasted only an hour and twenty minutes and Sabrina came out before Marel could get any meds (and no, she won't let you forget that she had that baby naturally). Sabrina was born at 9:50 PM and weighed 7 pounds 10 ounces and was 20.75" long. Other than a miserable month-long colic stage, she really is a perfect angel. She sleeps about 13 hours every night and goes about 10 hours of that without eating. She never cries and she's very cute. Celia loves her. When Celia hears Sabrina wake up in the morning, she says: "There's my baby!"

Celia is still the joy of the house. She's smart, funny, and doesn't have a mean bone in her body. She's always giving her toys to other kids to keep the peace and when she thinks Sabrina's crying because of something she did, Celia needs more consoling than Sabrina. She's still pretty funny.

Marel is glad to not be pregnant, is trying to figure out how to get anything done with two (fabulous) kids, and started a job in July as a research consultant for a behavioral economics firm. She works during nap time and loves it.

Tom is still loving his job He just started a new schedule where he works until 4:30 for nine days and then has every-other Monday off.

So... in summary: we're healthy, happy, and loving life. We hope the same is true for you. Merry Christmas!

Love, Marel, Tom, Celia, and Sabrina Stock.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

December pics you missed:

Alright - so I though we should update you on the goings-on of December (since you've heard just about the holidays). Here's our day-to-day December:

In this picture, Celia was lying down to get her bum changed and she told Tom she wanted to hold Sabrina's hand. Then she told Tom to get Bart because she wanted to hold his hand too:

We all got colds. In an effort to help Celia rest (and get rest myself), I told Celia that when we're sick, we get blankies and watch movies. This is her, two days after the cold was OVER, sniffling and insisting: "I still sick. I need blankies and watch movies all day." I let her watch one because she was cute:

When Sabrina is not eating or sleeping, she's smiling. And she's totally ticklish and cackles when we tickle her:

Our ward Christmas party was a "night in Bethlehem" where we all dressed up, got coins, paid for our food at booths, were taxed, etc. Celia looked kind of like a pirate, but she was really into dressing up, so we went with it:

Celia made us all pretend to "go nigh-night in Mommy and Daddy's bed" (when the sheets were being washed because of Sabrina's ever-present spit-up). Apparently Tom said something hilarious to Sabrina:

Sabrina will sometimes sleep until 10:30 AM if I move her to our bed after her early morning feeding:

We have the greatest friends ever who made us a delicious cake for our anniversary:

Celia went to yet another princess party as an even gaudier homemade princess. She was the only one there without a Disney princess dress. Luckily, she was just as happy and after she put on the three skirts she's wearing in the picture, she came up to me and said: "I look like Belle!" and I said: "yes, yes you do."

And now you're updated. We spent New Year's Eve with friends watching a live webcast of Times Square, so it ended at 8. It was still a little late for a party with kids and after the kids went down, Tom and I enjoyed a quiet evening eating crepes and watching Dick Clark's rockin' New Year's (which still ended at 11 here... perfect). We watched pretty professional-looking fireworks out our window. All of them would have been seriously illegal in Oregon. And now it's New Year's Day and Celia is walking around in jammies, high heels, and a princess nightgown over the top while watching "Monster's Inc." Sabrina is laughing at Tom and Tom and I are getting ready to take down the Christmas decorations. A day in the life...

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