Friday, September 30, 2011

SHOUT OUT! :) No more cords!!

Gonna "shout-out" to the male of this household today. :) Last week Cory finally did something that he said he would do since Nora was about 4-5 months old . . .

He organized and "hid" the cords under our computer desk! YAY!

Cords make me crazy, and I always hated the way this area used to look. I could not succeed in finding a before picture, but if I could only use three words to describe it: dusty, cluttered, and terrible! But the hubs zip tied the cords down the leg of the desk and then to the back of the rail . . .

. . . and hid the bulky stuff behind the tower. :)

Now when you sit on the couch in the living room, this is what you see:

Instead of dirty, icky cords and a power strip, it's white trim instead! Muuuuuuuuuuch better. :) Thanks hubby!!!!!!!

Until next time! . . .

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Nora's 25 Month Update

Nora just had her 24 month check-up this past week (her doctor was on maternity leave). She is in the 90th percentile for weight and is off the charts for height! We knew this already - it was kind of obvious in her pant legs - but hearing it was a shocker. We also (knowingly) got referred to a pediatric dentist, since Nora didn't have any more teeth just yet . . . but two days after the check-up, I noticed that another tooth had finally popped through on top! :) It was such a surprise! Nora wasn't even acting like she was sick or teething really, so we definitely weren't expecting another tooth. It was a wonderful day. :)

Behavior-wise, Nora is still as charismatic and happy as she has ever been. What a wonderful child!! She LOVES to color and has recently become very intent about it, spending lots of time on most of her pictures:

This is her first real "drawing". She told me it was "a robot", complete with "head, body, legs" (lots of them), and "two eyes". I was so impressed when she drew this!

She also continues to love to sing, play, and listen to music. Her favorite songs right now are "Old Mac Donald", "Mingo" (Bingo), and "Wheels on the Bus". She also loves to listen to the Laurie Berkner Band Greatest Hits CD, and requests for mommy to sing those songs to her! :) Perhaps the funniest thing Nora has been doing is "singing" instrumental songs that she hears. She will start with "Dun-dun-dun-dun-dun-da-dunnnnn . . . " and go from there. She even sings the "runs" of the songs, and it's just so darn funny! I am making it my mission to get a video of her doing this. :)

She also has a new friend this month:

This was my Phi-Bear in college, and Nora has commissioned it to be her new BFF. She calls it her "baby bear" and must sleep with it every night. I am very proud. :)

She continues to talk very well. Her are some of this month's "Nora-isms":
Tell her "No way!" she responds with "Yeah no way!"
"Seed you later!"
She consistently calls toilet paper "newspaper"
Very concerned about our feelings: "Momma, you happy?", "Daddy, you sad?"
Says "hair bones" instead of "hair bows"
sun-cwasses (Sunglasses)
"Hey mom!" (Cory and I got shortened to mom and dad this month, instead of mommy and daddy.)
She also introduces herself to everyone and everything (cats, dolls, etc.): "Hi, I'm Nora!"

She also loves to watch Blue's Clues, and it's really cute to hear her refer to the notebook as the "Supery-Dupery Handy Dandy Notebook" :) (She loved the one I made her, by the way!) She pretends to talk to "Steve" on the phone, and consistently says "Wet's fink!" (Let's think!)

She is potty trained now, and continues to do very well. I can count on one hand the number of pee accidents she has had this month, which is great! She has also made really good progress in learning to share her toys. Her buddy -E- has been a really good sport in helping Nora learn. :) -E- is such a kind friend and has taught Nora a lot!

We started going over more sight words and letter sounds this month. Nora knows quite a lot of letter sounds! She's on track to be reading at a very early age, so we will see how she does. She continues to love books and we read a LOT (which I am over-the-moon about.) :)

I think that's about it for now! Have a good week all. Until next time . . .

Thursday, September 22, 2011

I could not resist . . .

This week on Pinterest, I happened to see this photo:


If you look closely, the skeleton bodies are the student's names in cursive. I LOVED THIS IDEA! But since I am not a teacher anymore (and even when I was I had no students that could write in cursive anyway) I decided to create a few of these on my own for some whimsical Halloween decor:

It was one of those projects you just can't resist doing - especially when you have absolutely everything on hand except for the canvases to mount them on. :) Plus I was happy I finally got to use up some of the mountain of card stock that I have!! I am all about the paper projects.

The creative bug bit me numerous times today because I also made Nora something that I think she will freak out over:

That's right: it's a very simple "Handy Dandy Notebook" (that Nora refers to as a "Supery-Dupery Handy Dandy Notebook"). She's a little obsessed with Blue's Clues right now. I think this will go over VERY WELL. Well enough to be worth the 5 minutes it took to make this anyway! :)

Look for Nora's most recent update this week! Until next time . . .

Tuesday, September 20, 2011


So . . . have you discovered Pinterest? If you haven't . . . that is probably good for you! It's soooooo addicting.

Lately, however, I have decided to stop "pinning" so much, and start creating a bit more! :) Here are a few pins that I am basing current projects off of, or that have inspired me to create something new alltogether:

(Link to Pin)

(Link to Pin)

(Link to Pin)

I am working on some other Pinterest-inspired projects as well, but they all fall into the baby gift, Christmas gift, or Christmas card categories, and it's just not smart to post those just yet. :)

These are some of the many projects I found on Pinterest, but you can also post recipes, outfits, home decor ideas, and more! I love this site because it organizes my creativity (and it's many facets) so well.

If you are on Pinterest and want to follow me, you can find me here. :) I can also send you an invite if you would like to join up!

Until next time . . .

Saturday, September 17, 2011

"What's that thing on your sink?"

I recently bought something to place on my sink faucet in the "kids bathroom":

It's called the Aquaduck Faucet Extender, and I find myself wondering how I ever managed without it! It diverts the water flow coming out of your faucet, extending it closer to the child washing their hands, so that they can actually reach it without you having to lift them.

Nora still has to use a step stool and stand on her tippy-toes, but she can reach!

I am so happy to have it because we always started off washing hands in the morning, but as the day wore on I found myself giving up and just using hand sanitizer instead of having the kids wash when I was having to lift Nora or -E- for the twentieth time in two hours. And if they sneezed on their hands? Yeah, I would sometimes get lazy about that too. But ever since we got this thing, hand washing has increased dramatically - and right before cold and flu season to boot! :) It's just a fantastic little invention and I highly recommend it.

(I was not compensated for this. All opinions are 100% mine. If you want to order your own, head here.)

Until next time . . .

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Another 9/11 Rememberance Post

On 9-11-01 I was in my room at my parent's house, getting ready to go to college at SIUE. I had the news on in the background, but my mind wasn't on it - I was thinking of my nephew, because it was his birthday. I remember looking at the TV . . . and then suddenly it registered what had happened. I listened to the radio and cried all the way to school. When I got there, the TV's were on in the University Center and everyone was gathered around them. It was unreal. A lot of my classes were canceled that day, and I headed into work early.

Back then I worked for the Illinois State Police, and I thought if I felt safe anywhere it was at work, surrounded by guys who were protective and passionate about it. Also, I was worried for this girl that I knew (and her family) who worked at a restaurant gas station near work where I regularly ate lunch. She was obviously from the Middle East and I had heard stories of Middle Easterners and their businesses being targeted that day. Earlier that summer she had reached out to me and we started to talk everyday that I went in there. One day she told me she liked my eyeliner, so I bought her some and gave it to her as a present. I remember driving by on 9-11 to see if I could see her in the restaurant window (I was too afraid to go in in case someone targeted her family while I was in there) and see if she was OK. I don't think she was there, but I was not brave enough to go in and check on her. I did end up seeing her a few more times, and we didn't talk at all - I didn't know what to say, and I don't think she did either. Eventually I stopped going there for lunch.

Today was the memorial service at the firehouse where my husband volunteers. It hit me how much the world really has changed since then. I heard some children - who were not born yet on the day of the attacks - singing "God Bless America" (the country version, lol) and they got really loud at the part where they sing "I'm proud to be an American, where at least I know I'm free!" They really seem to get that, if nothing else about what this day stands for now, and I think that's neat.

I also am so very proud of my husband. I realized for the first time how unselfish it really is to be a first responder. Cory, whether he likes it or not, does exactly what it says in John 15:13: "Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends." That is why I was so scared to have him join the fire department, why I refused to let him ever even entertain the idea of joining the military - because Cory is a first responder in the truest sense of the word. He does it willingly, no complaining, no thinking about it first. Wow, that is scary for his wife!!! I got teary today just thinking about it - Cory would have been in there if we lived in New York. Yes, he absolutely would have.

But we Americans are living in the "land of the free, and home of the brave" and so we must be brave. And here's to my hero, and the heroes that are no longer with us. They are the brave ones when we cannot be, and some have had to pay the highest price for it. God bless you all!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Nora's 1st Zoo Trip

We took Nora's first trip to the St. Louis Zoo this past Labor Day Weekend. It was packed, but the weather was beautiful and we really enjoyed ourselves. Here are some photos:

Us outside the zoo.

Nora brushing goats in the Children's Zoo:

We met up with some of our neighbors.

Then we saw a giraffe family. The daddy giraffe had his very long tongue sticking out.

Nora thought that was really cool. :)

We watched the Sea Lion Show.

Nora also watched the show for exactly this long:

Then we walked around and went in some of the houses, like the Primate House and the Herpetarium. Nora saw her "pock-a-dile" and liked watching the monkeys a LOT.

And after fighting the crowds to see the ONE elephant that the zoo had out that day, we finally rode the train! Nora was very tired by then, but she sure enjoyed herself.

Then we got some ice cream, stopped by the store, and then left for the day. This happened about 3.4 seconds minutes after we got into the car:

We got stuck in a little traffic on the way out, but then we found out why:

The Clydesdales went right in front of us! Nice end to a really cool day. Perfect weather, good fun, just a really nice day with the family and friends. :) Great trip!