Thursday, June 26, 2008

The Ole, Reliable Graco Snug Ride

We've been working hard to get ready for the baby, and Kaia's been a great helper. I took out the old carseat to give it a good cleaning. When I was done, Kaia had to get in and test it out. She made sure it was comfy and all the buckles worked.

It's hard to believe she ever fit into this tiny she is at about 3 months.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

I Love YouTube

When I was in Green Bay a few weeks ago, we spent part of an evening entertaining ourselves with YouTube. Here's a few videos I found particularly funny. If anyone has more, please send me the links. I love this stuff!

Great Infomercial

Evolution of Dance

Kaia's New Room

We've been working hard to get Kaia's big girl room ready for her to move into. I painted a few weeks ago. Yes, it's pink. At first I thought it was too pink, but now it's growing on me. The one wall is a dark rose shade and the other three walls are a light pink. Mike hung shades on the windows and fixed a crib we got from a friend. We outfitted the room with my cute garage sale rug (posted previously), Grandma Johnson's dresser, and a chair (also purchased at a garage sale $15). The chair is in great shape, but the green, country-style pattern doesn't go with the decor. It could sure use a slipcover...Mom??? Soon we'll get a twin bed to put in the room and my mom is making a really cute quilt. We'll be sure to post pictures when it's done. Kaia seems excited about the room, but we'll see how she does when we ask her to sleep there and, later, put the baby in her old crib.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Glamour Girl

Straight out of Hollywood....

and of course Mommy had to dress up too!


Here's some pictures of the kids from Monday morning playgroup. First is Kaia, Jakob, and Brennen on the teeter-totter. Then, Connor felt left out that he wasn't in the picture, so he ran up quickly so I could get a shot of his cuteness too.

Steamboat Days

Every town has their "Days" celebration. In Winona, we have Steamboat Days and it was this weekend. On Friday, we went down to the carnival for a greasy dinner, rides, and to hang with the "carnies". Kaia loved watching all the people. While we were there, we got to see a human cannonball. We thought for sure he was going to overshoot his landing.

Kaia liked watching the rides and said she wanted to go on them, but once she got there, she changed her mind. Mike took her on two rides: the Crazy Bus and the Merry Go Round. On the crazy bus, she sat next to him and clung to him, gripping his t-shirt the entire time. We thought she'd like the Merry Go Round a little better, but still, it just made her a little nervous. That's my kind of girl! I don't do rides. Daddy had fun though.

On Sunday, we went to the parade. We got rained on a few times, but Kaia still liked everything about it - the horses, the bands, the grown men riding go-carts (there were about 5 different groups of them), the firetrucks, and the candy. At the end, she started taking the candy from our pile and putting it back into the street, because she thought that's where it belongs.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Kaia Rae

Here's just some snapshots of Kaia.

Once in awhile, I'll notice it's quiet in our house, and I'll go to check on Kaia. Lately, I've found her just sitting and cuddling with Kylie, giving hugs and kisses. Ah, the bond between a girl and her dog!

This is one of Kaia's favorite things to do, "color paper". I think she picked up this term because she needs to be reminded often that we only color on paper. Thank goodness for washable crayons!

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Five Years!

Today Mike and I celebrate our Five Year Anniversary! Wow time has flown by. Here's some pictures from our wedding day. Look at how skinny we were! I threw in the one of Mike's brothers tossing him off the boathouse because I think it's funny.

And, no, we have no special plans to celebrate. Just relaxing and spending some time catching up after Mike's trip. Mike bought gifts for both of us in China - purse, sunglasses, watch for me and golf clubs for Mike (all designer knock-offs, we were praying he'd make it through customs). Happy Anniversary to us!

Daddy's Home!

Mike finally came home from China yesterday. Yay! He was gone for two weeks. (I didn't post it on the blog because I'm paranoid some stalker is going to hunt us down knowing that my bodyguard of a husband is out of town.) Fastenal has an IT development group in Shanghai that Mike went to train on some things. We missed him SOOOOOOOO much. And we're glad he's home safe. He had a good time experiencing such a different culture. Ask him about it next time you see him.

Kaia and I went down to LaCrosse to pick him up from the airport. She was very interested in watching the planes. She's been talking about Daddy and airplanes for the last two days. Here she is waiting patiently for Daddy to arrive.

You can't necessarily tell here, but Kaia was so excited to see her Dad. She told lots of stories and smiled a lot.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Who Let the Dogs Out

On Monday nights we have CareRings (small group) at the Kelners with some people from church. We leave the kids at our house with a babysitter while we meet. Tonight we came home to Tyler and Kaia standing on the couch jammin out to this little "Hip Clips" music player Kaia has. Apparently Tyler has learned all the words to "Who Let the Dogs Out".

We Go Green Bay

Kaia and I spent an extended weekend in Green Bay. We had lots of fun. Kaia got her sillies on, got lots of attention, and totally entertained everyone. What did we do before Kaia? We also did some shopping and took a tour of Lora's new place - very nice!

Kaia loved playing outside, of course. She and Cassie had a good time drawing pictures on the driveway.
Grandma filled a big tub with water for Kaia to play with. She got soaked, but had a ball!

This is Riley's gross stuffed cheetah (Riley is my parents dog). Kaia took a liking to the cheetah, although she kept calling it "bunny". As you see Bunny taking a ride in the shopping cart in the previous picture. Kaia and Riley fought over the silly thing all weekend.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Stylish Organization

I finally put together the toy shelf we picked up on our Ikea run weeks ago. Kaia's toys are no longer crammed into a corner and she has space to play. It looks good too and matches the rest of our living room furniture. Love it! We still have some matching shelves to put up to decorate the wall. We'll see how many more weeks it takes us to do that!

Jared and Katrina Visit

This morning, "Tina" and "Dared" came to play. (Jared and Katrina are Mike's brother's twins.)We all had A LOT of fun. Here's some pictures of the kids playing outside. Notice there is no mud in the driveway...I spent several hours pressure washing this week.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Freezer Sammies

Here's another good (and easy) freezer recipe I tried tonight.

Freezer Sandwiches
8 hoagie buns
3T butter
3T dijon mustard
3T Worcestershire sauce

Sauce: Melt butter, add mustard and worcestershire.
Spoon sauce onto buns. Top with lunchmeat and cheese. Wrap in foil and freeze.

To serve: Defrost, bake in 350 oven for 10-15 minutes. (If you're not good at planning ahead, you can pop these into the oven straight from the freezer like I did. I cooked it in the oven for about 15 minutes, until I got impatient. The bun was toasty, but the inside was still cold, so I removed the foil, opened up the sandwich and microwaved until warmed through.)

They're a simple, quick lunch or dinner. The sauce adds a little extra flavor and baking them makes them toasty and melty. Just a few steps above your basic cold sandwich. Plus, you don't have to pull out all the ingredients each time you want a sandwich.

I also tried cooking the breakfast mcmuffins I posted a few weeks ago. Not as good as fresh. I'm not sure what to change, but the meat just tasted reheated and the eggs were a little dry. Maybe some of those precooked sausage patties you buy in the store would work better than cooking them yourself. Or, use ham instead.

Just Hanging Out

Here's a few pics of us just hanging out.

Kaia and Daddy building with blocks.
I tried to get a nice picture of the two of us - didn't realize the silly girl had her finger up her nose!

That's better!