Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Trick or Treat

We went to the library story time this morning all dressed up. They listened to stories, got treats, and decorated (and of course ate) a cookie. They had a lot of fun, and it was another excuse to dress up in their costumes.
After little to no naps (too excited I guess), we went trick or treating with some friends of ours. Hannah asked me after every house, "Can we go get some more candy?" Genna walked almost the whole way! She would have walked the whole way, but she was slowing the group down so I carried her for some of the long stretches even though she was saying, "Walk" over and over while I did it. She even said the traditional "Trick or treat" to a lucky few although it was very quiet.

Enjoy the slide show of our day!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Jesus is still talking to Hannah

Well, I can actually hear Jesus now when he talks to Hannah. He sounds an awful lot like Hannah whispering! :)

During prayer time tonight she thanked God for her chocolate chip cookie and being able to help me put groceries away. Apparently, that was the highlight of her day today, not her first German mom and toddler class. It didn't go very smoothly. It was mostly my fault because I thought it started at 10:30, and it really started at 10:00. So we missed the first 30 minutes, and Hannah got thrown into the middle of it all. So we started out on a bad foot. On top of that, 75 percent of the class has taken the class before at least once. (Hannah does not like to not know things that other people know.) She got shy and clingy on me on and off which is so strange. She usually doesn't even know I am there in these sort of situations. The girls had a few momentary role reversals. Genna even took Hannah's turn a couple of times during some of the games. Hannah didn't want to go because she got her feelings hurt when she didn't get a match in the memory game and several people called out that it was wrong. Perfectionist behavior, I suppose! She doesn't do that when we play at home, so maybe it was just an embarrassment thing. Anyway, I hope Thursday will go better! She did seem to pick up a few things in German though. I even heard her saying, "Ich heisse Hannah" to herself while she was coloring (that means my name is Hannah).

Monday, October 29, 2007

Almost only counts in horse shoes and hand grenades!

I was changing Genna's diaper before bed and it was dry. That means it stayed dry all the way since she woke up from her nap. So I asked her if she wanted to try to sit on the potty and she agreed to try it out. We've been practicing sitting on it, but she hasn't actually figured out what to do there yet (except for wipe with toilet paper-that seems to be her favorite part.) Well, as we are heading into the bathroom, Hannah announces that she has to go soooo badly and absolutely can't wait. Well, I didn't want Hannah to have an accident and I thought she could be fast so I distracted Genna with a potty book. In hindsight, I should have called Brian to take Hannah upstairs or help her on the big potty. Well, I was trying to get Hannah quickly off the potty when I hear the sound that says I am already too late! Genna was so very close to going on the potty for the very first time! Also, I had to throw the potty book Genna was reading away because I didn't know how to clean urine off of it. It seems the initiation into motherhood never ends! It's just one big hazing incident after another!
Genna cuddled up on the couch with her mittens still on from playing outside.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

"Be quiet, Mom. Jesus is talking to me right now."

Our Bible story last night was about Jesus praying in the garden to God. We were discussing praying and talking to God which led a discussion on listening to God. I tried to explain that sometimes God talks to her and tells her things in her heart like that she should love her sister by sharing her toys and that she should listen to her mommy. While I was explaining this, she put her hand over my mouth, bends her ear down as close to her heart as she can get it(the cutest part, if you ask me), and says, "Be quiet, Mom. Jesus is talking to me right now." A moment later, she lays back down and says, "Jesus told me that it is time to read my other book now." We always read the book that she picks out after the Bible story or religious book that I choose. :) I guess she was ready to move on.

Jesus has talked to her many times today as well. On the way to Mass, I was shushed again so that she could hear the still quiet voice within her. When I asked her what He had to say this time, she told me Jesus told her to be a good girl during Mass. I was relieved to hear that Jesus' voice wasn't only being used to get her own way! All the rest of Hannah's revelations have been holy in nature so far.

The Copy Cat Game

The girls have a new favorite game that they play together. One of them does something (for example, making a sound or shaking their head) and the other copies it. This goes on and on until one of them loses interest. Either of them can be the initiator. They play it in the car, in the stroller, or at the dinner table. It's pretty funny sometimes! I caught a couple rounds of it on video, and this one was my favorite! They are in a cardboard box in this video.

Friday, October 26, 2007

My little pumpkin didn't want to get her hands dirty!

Well, here is our pumpkin. Hannah calls it "Hannah's pumpkin." Genna calls it "Hot pump" because I told her it was hot when I lit the candle. So she ran around the house saying "Hot pump, hot pump!" all afternoon.

Hannah picked out the face out of a bunch that I found online. Other than that, she did not participate too much in the making of "Hannah's pumpkin." She was really excited about helping me carve the pumpkin. However, when I removed the top and she saw the stringy pulp, she bailed on me. She informed me there was no way she was getting her hands dirty touching that yucky stuff! What a little priss I have for a daughter! I have been told that I was like that too when I was my mom.

Anyways, I roasted the pumpkin seeds and they are delicious. That's my favorite part of the whole pumpkin carving event. Here's my recipe:

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

pumpkin seeds

garlic powder
cayenne pepper
black pepper
brown sugar

Preheat oven to 325C (170F). Toss seeds with the remaining ingredients and spread out on a rimmed cookie sheet. Roast in oven for 20-30 minutes. Scrape off of pan and allow to cool.

If you don't like one of the ingredients, leave it out. The oil and salt are the important ones!

Learning opposites!

We read a book before nap about antonyms. I was about to tuck Hannah in and take Genna to her bed when I had to tell Hannah to calm down. She was bouncing around, not looking at all like she was ready to take a nap. So the following conversation then occurred:

Hannah: What's the opposite of "calming down," Mom?

Me: Being hyper.

Hannah: That's what I want to be! Hyper!

Me: What's the opposite of being naughty?

Hannah: Being sorry.

Funny that she came to that conclusion. It makes sense. After all, being sorry is how she gets out of the Naughty corner.

Another of my crochet projects...

I made these a while ago, but it is cold enough to wear them now. I think I need to add an extra row onto Genna's because it doesn't cover even part of her ears. They are good models! Genna's a little harder to work with because of her age and independence, but Hannah is a natural!

I am in the middle of many projects at the moment. I may be the project queen. I like to have a bunch going at the same time so I can do the one I am in the mood for when the time presents itself. I am working on a photo family tree for the girls right now, but it is slow going because I am waiting on some pictures from family members. I made the girls a doll house out of a cardboard box, but still haven't finished decorating it yet because I ran out of supplies. I am working on some homemade Christmas gifts, some Saint cards for the girls, and fine tuning that pattern for the crocheted rosary for a monk that we will be visiting in Florence in February. I will post pictures of some of these as I finish them.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

My first shattered crystal bowl...I think this is part of my initiation into motherhood!

Well, I guess it was bound to happen sometime! I was cooking dinner last night when I heard the crystal bowl we got for our wedding hit the tile floor and shatter into a million pieces. I know what you are all thinking. Why would I have something valuable and breakable where the kids can reach it? The answer is that it wasn't. I am still not quite sure how it got broken since it was well above the reach of the 4 little hands in this house. My best guess is that the balloon got thrown into it, the string was pulled to retrieve it, and the bowl was pulled off the shelf with it. My only clue was the balloon laying in the middle of the mess, and Genna was saying, "Boon" over and over again. The culprit was of course Genevieve, as many of you who know the girl's personalities could guess (Hannah is too careful most of the time to do something like this). Thank God she wasn't hurt! I picked her up and immediately searched her for cuts. Somehow her precious body went unharmed. I am so glad it didn't land on her head or something because it was heavy (1/2 inch thick of crystal).

Brian comes home tonight, and unfortunately I have lots of bad news for him. However, he will be more upset that I missed the garbage truck that comes only every other week than about the broken bowl. I had it all ready to take to the curb and was going to do so after I got the kids to bed, but I totally forgot. I woke up the next morning at 6:30am to the sound of the truck. I jumped up and ran out there as fast as I could, but still missed it. And that was the one thing he asked me to make sure and do while he was gone! Man, I feel badly. I am trying to make it better by making my tummy warming spaghetti and meatballs AND his favorite cookies too. Hannah is going to help me make the chocolate chip cookies when she gets up from her nap. I doubt this makes up for the rest of the bad news, but at least he will feel loved!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Future ballerinas???

Hannah had a friend over today, and the girls all dressed up in tutus and danced all over the house! They had a lot of fun, as you can see! Hannah's friend was teaching them dance moves from her dance class. Genna was really getting into it too! She was calling her outfit a "dess" (translation=dress).

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

My Crocheted Rosary Project

Here's the rosary that I have been working on and finally finished. As you may be able to tell in the picture with Hannah (aka Vanna White), it is very long/big. I am going to try to adapt the pattern a bit for the next one to make it smaller, but this one was meant for the kids anyways. Plus, in the end I was not happy with the size difference between the Hail Mary beads and the Our Father beads. So I'll need to fix that as well. I wanted a rosary they could hold during Mass that would not make any noise if they dropped it. This will definitely work!

Murphy's Law strikes again!

Well, it never fails that as soon as my husband leaves on a trip, someone gets sick! Genna had a fever yesterday, but today it is gone. However, she is very cranky, woke up at 5am this morning (a whopping 4 hours early for her), and she had to take a short nap in the car because of an appointment that I couldn't miss. Poor baby! She is very tired, and so am I. I have had insomnia at about 4am for 3 days in a row now. I can't get back to sleep. Therefore, I was wide awake and ready to take care of my sick sweetie pie this morning.

I lost my faith in the Celebrity Look-alikes!

I guess it doesn't work well with little kids! Hannah's were fairly flattering, but poor Genevieve! I mean Dustin Hoffman and Little Bow Wow, come on! I certainly won't be showing these to them EVER! Not that I would have anyway. That would make me a bad mom!

Monday, October 22, 2007

My Celebrity Look-alike Collage

This is ridiculously silly, somewhat vain, but kind of fun too!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

A couple of cute videos...

I have been a bit video crazy lately, but the main reason I am posting these is because the grandparents watch them a million times. Plus, I have been desperately trying to catch Genna on video. She's a bit camera shy. I turn it on and ask her to do something only to get an embarrassed "No" while she runs away. Today after Mass, I had some success. She makes a brief appearance in the first clip and actually participates a bit in the second one.

Here is Hannah's very first memory verse that I picked out because she was having trouble controlling her temper towards her sister and me.

Here's a couple kisses blown all the way from Germany to all our family and friends in the states.

A reminder why you don't give toddlers open-ended choices

I had just gotten Genna up for church this morning, and I was getting her dressed upstairs. In attempt to distract her, the following conversation ensued.

Me: What do you want for breakfast, Genna?

Genna: Deebees (translation=Cheerios), Yogurt, Spoon, Waf (translation=waffle)

I talked her down to yogurt and a waffle (with a spoon, of course). This girl can eat!

Friday, October 19, 2007

The problem with teaching them German is...

I now have to hear the word "no" in two different languages all day long. Even Genna is telling me "nein" now. She is talking so much now, mostly when we're at home or with people with whom she is comfortable. She is even putting three words together occasionally, like "Baby fall down" or "Help me fruit." She also likes to introduce her family to people. She says, "Mommy. Daddy. Nannah" while pointing or tapping each of us. Then the people usually say, "Oh, is that your mommy?" She responds with a nod and an "Mm." Funny girl!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Twilight Zone

This is getting weird! Genna actually asked our friend, "Dr. Joe," to hold her! (I had to take a picture of this monumental event!) She is now crying when certain people leave, asking to go in the car instead of begging me to go home, and getting upset when we leave playgroup. She's never acted like this before! She's still pretty shy when people pay a lot of attention to her, but this is big progress! I mean, she has never ever asked anyone to pick her up when I have been in the room (other than her dad), especially not a man.

"Dr. Joe" and his wife, Sara, stayed with us a couple days before moving back to the states. Every time they had to go run errands, Genna cried, "Joe, bye bye" over and over again with her pouty lip stuck out, similarly to how she acted when Dreydon left that night, but not quite so dramatic. I thought I had her figured out, but she keeps surprising me.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Hannah's rendition of "Hey Diddle Diddle"

Hannah was sitting in the corner with a bunch of books singing "Hey Diddle Diddle" to herself. I couldn't resist catching it on video. :)

Monday, October 15, 2007

First Wine Harvest Parade

We went to this parade to celebrate the first harvest of the wine yesterday afternoon. The wine they take first is called Neuer Weine. It is taken before it is fully fermented and so is like juice with a little wine in it. As in the typical German fest, there was food, rides, games, and, of course, wine. (I keep wondering how the Germans aren't dehydrated all the time the way they drink alcohol, and you can't even buy regular water in most places.) We went with our German neighbors (they speak English too, in case you were wondering). They don't have any kids and just loved the girls. They even bought some tickets for rides for them. They showed us some more traditional German foods, Zwiebel Kuchen (onion cakes, like a quiche packed with onions), Schweinmagen (pig stomach filled with pork, potatoes, etc-you don't eat the stomach part, it is just the casing it is cooked in), Crepes mit Bananas und Schokolade (crepe with bananas and chocolate). We had a lot of fun! Here are some pictures!

A float with one of the wine princesses in the giant wine glass covered in vines.

Another float in the parade, a huge wine barrel.

Sometimes Germans dress a little crazy.

The queen of the wine harvest, and the end of the 2 hour parade.

Hannah and Genna riding in a carriage

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Beauty Parlor

We had a lazy day yesterday of folding laundry and playing beauty parlor. Here are some of the pictures.Notice the crazy amount of chap stick Hannah has on her face! When I said, "Oh, my!" she informed me that she ate some too!

Monday, October 8, 2007

What could be better than a picnic with Daddy?

I have to brag on my husband! He took the kids on several bike rides and a picnic on his four day weekend. (Mommy got to have some time to herself. In fact, I even got to go to daily Mass on Friday all by myself which was wonderfully refreshing!) The girls had a blast on the picnic! It's all Hannah could talk about. She even remembered to thank God for the picnic and bike ride at bedtime. Daddy packed PB&J sandwiches, and planned the whole thing. Here are a couple pictures of one of the bike rides when I tagged along!

Saturday, October 6, 2007

"Yesh, Ma'm"

That is what Genna said to me when I asked if she wanted some milk with her snack yesterday. How sweet and unexpected was that! Usually I just get a grunt with a nod or an "Uh huh." It's so great that she learns things just by hearing me teach Hannah! It is almost like a two for one deal!

Here's something out of character for Genna. We had some new friends over for dinner last night. They have a son just a couple months younger than Genna. So, the kids played well together during the evening, and Genna started saying a word we did not understand at first, "Day." Hannah told us that she was saying, "Dreydon," which is the little boy's name. And sure enough, she was! When it was time for them to leave, as his mom was getting him in the stroller for their two minute walk home, Genna was getting upset saying, "Day, nein! Nein!" I explained that Dreydon had to go home because it was bedtime. I asked her if she wanted to go "night night" and get her baby(a Sleeping Beauty doll), Bubba (her pacifier-Hannah named it that when she was a baby), and Nanni (a blankie that has an elephant head on one corner-I don't know why she named it that). She sleeps with all of these things for every nap and bedtime. Usually, suggesting "night, night" gets her excited! She loves bedtime, believe it or not! But she did not care last night. She just wanted "Day." I had to pry the door out of her hands so I could close it when they left. She cried/threw a fit for "Day" until I gave her Bubba and got her dressed for bed. How strange for my shy, unsocial little one to do this! That is something Hannah would do. Come to think of it, maybe she learned it from Hannah...

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

A brave social butterfly at the doctor!

Hannah had to go to the doctor today. So I prepped her by telling her exactly what the doctor would do and that I would be there the whole time. She took her Pooh bear to sit with her on the examination table. I told her that I wanted her to be a brave girl. So she marched right in and got on the scale. After the nurse took her temp, she said, "I'm being a brave girl!" The nurse said, "I like this girl!" He showed her the pain scale pictures and asked her how much it hurt. He described the faces..happy, a little sad, pretty sad, and then asked how she felt. She said, "I like to be happy!" That's my Hannah! She settled on a little hurt/sad after I explained what he was asking again. She was very brave for the doctor too, and kept reminding me and him of that fact the whole time.
At the lab, she struck up a conversation with a doctor in the waiting area. They talked about all kinds of things. She pretty much told him her life story, down to the color of her daddy's eyes! She cracks me up! She doesn't get this social streak from me or Brian! She and Genna (she behaved during the appointment too) split "pink" ice cream in a cup after the appointment, since there is a little ice cream/coffee place in the building.
The appointment was right in the middle of nap time, so they slept for the 20 minute car ride on the way there. So they were pooped this evening. Genna was asking to go to bed at 6:15pm! Whew! I am tired too!

Hannah can ride her tricycle!

We just set it up not a month ago, and Hannah started peddling away this week despite the fact that she can barely reach the peddles when they are at the farthest point. Way to go, Hannah!

Monday, October 1, 2007

A day in the life of a mom: A grape dance, some puke, and a booger

Well, our day started relatively uneventful with a trip to the grocery store where the girls shared snacks and gave me a fairly peaceful shopping trip. When we got home, they helped me unload the groceries and put them away. Yes, a one year old and an almost three year old actually helped get every single thing out of the bags so that I could put them away (except the milk jugs and laundry detergent for obvious reasons.) I was impressed with my little helpers!

Then I decided to try a fun lunch for the girls with fresh fruit and vegetables in the shape of a smiley face and cucumber sandwiches. While I was cleaning and cutting the fruit, Genna spied the grapes and began what can only be called a "grape dance." She turned in circles singing, "Grapes...grapes..." with a nice little melody. I tried to run to get it on video, but, of course, she would not do it again when I got back. In fact, her sweet excitement had died and she was now mad because I was not focusing on getting her those grapes! Bad mommy!
Genna ate the sandwiches willingly, but Hannah took some convincing. She usually likes cucumbers and pickles, so I thought this wouldn't be too big of a deal. Plus, I put cream cheese on them! Anyway, I really had to convince Hannah to eat just a tiny square of her sandwich with a promise that I wouldn't make her eat it EVER again. She takes her last bite and then I hear, "Uh oh, Mommy! Help me!" She had puked all her lunch up! Now how bad do I feel for convincing her to eat that TINY piece of sandwich? Bad mommy again! I swear they weren't that bad! Genna and I ate them!

Oh, yes! The booger! Genna stuck her finger up her nose. When I told her to stop it, she pulled it out and handed me an imaginary booger and said, "Booger!" She learned this from Hannah, of course, who has become quite the nose picker since she has had a "snuffy nose" (translation= stuffy nose) lately. Hannah does teach her sister good things, so I guess I should expect some bad habits to be transferred as well.