Monday, December 13, 2010

A little over a week ago, Ryan and I took a little trip to Denver and Colorado Springs, both of us for meetings, but we also had a lot of fun. While in Colorado Springs for a school board conference, we stayed at the Broadmoor Hotel.

Let me tell you about this hotel.

It is a 5 star, 5 diamond hotel. It is the sort of place where you'd better be rich to stay there b/c you'll go broke just for all the people you need to tip, since you're not allowed to lift a finger for yourself. We stayed in the main building; the West building is across the lake. But don't worry. There's a bridge if you're aching to see the ice sculptures over there. Our room had a huge bathtub, huge shower, huge bed, separate office area (great to put the crib in) and everything we could want. At night they came around for turn down service and gave us chocolates and the list of complimentary events hosted by the hotel the following day. These events included, by the way, movies in their own theater. Ryan also took Genevieve to cupcake decorating one morning. It was kind of awesome.

If you're thinking the school district should be outraged to pay for that expense, simmer. It was the off-season, the week after Thanksgiving, and they give a huge discount to our conference because it's been there for 20 years, so it's not much more than staying at other hotels. And, um, it was totally worth it. :) As pretty much the only perk that comes out of being a school board member, it definitely lived up to my expectations.

On a more normal note, Genevieve has already learned to help mommy with chores:

Development Updates:
  • Vivi has now learned to sign and say "hot." Last night I made the mistake of telling her her eggs were hot at dinner, and she spent the rest of the meal blowing on them.
  • She also has learned "no," and I'm already missing the days when she would say yes to everything.
  • She signs "brush teeth." That baby toothpaste must taste good because she loves it.

We leave for Raleigh in 4 DAYS!!!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Well, it is now 2:52 AM, and I've been awake since 11 feeling so sick I would give up my Christmas presents to feel better. OK, maybe not. But since I'm up, I figured I could give you some more updates on our Genevieve.

We are amazed by how much she is now communicating with us! Here are all the signs she uses now:
  • food
  • more - We haven't seen this one in a while. She's still just signing "food," but we're working on it.
  • dog - We went to Old Navy last week, and they had one of those creepy mannequin family displays at the entrance. Part of it was a dog, and she walked right up to it and signed "dog" without any help. Of course, she pats her stomach instead of her leg, but we know what she means.
  • book - She also says "buh." This is probably her most common sign. She does it every time we go in her bedroom. She LOVES her books -- especially the peek-a-boo ones with flaps.
  • please - I was at school board meetings tonight, but Ryan said she signed AND said this tonight without any prompting. I can't wait to hear it. Ryan gets all the credit for this one because I rarely remember to teach her these good manners.
  • all done - I have to prompt her a lot to do this one -- she still prefers yelling at me when she's done -- but we're working on it.
Sometimes I think she might be doing a few others, but I'm not sure yet. She also keeps doing one hand motion, but I can't figure out what it means. It looks like "clean up," but there's no way that's what she's telling me.

Here are a few more videos. This first one shows what a good little helper she is. She was so cute, sitting by daddy and handing him screws as he needed them. I distracted her when I pulled out the camera. Oh well.

This next one's from a while ago. I turned the box from Vivi's new carseat into a little playhouse. It looks very ghetto, but she thought is was the best thing ever.

This is from even longer ago, but it's cute, and I'm up, so here it is:

Yes, there's still a lot more to post, but for now I'm going to try to sleep again. Fingers crossed.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010


I have SO many new things to post, but I'll just start with a few fun ones from our trip this past week. Ryan had meetings in Denver the first part of the week, and I had a school board conference in Colorado Springs the second part of the week, so we made it a family trip.

Here's a video from the Denver hotel room, where she spent most of her time chillin' in the sink:

Vivi is not a very good talker yet, but she loves saying "yeah." If you ask her ANY yes/no question in the world, she will nod and say, "yeah." It's pretty entertaining.

SO much more to post. But I'm tired.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

My hilarious little walker

Yes, I know she only goes like a foot and a half, but that's pretty much all she does before she realizes that crawling is still a whole lot easier.

And now for the moment that had Ryan and I laughing until our stomachs hurt. I think she likes soda; what do you think?

Monday, October 25, 2010

Birthday Presents!

Sure, birthdays are fun. And birthday cake is yummy. But what's even better?


Here's V with her present from nana and papa. You can't tell, but she's saying "Thanks, nana" telephathically.

"Oh, toy, I love you so much!!!"

That thing is fabulous. It has so many bells and whistles it's sure to distract her when I plop her down in front of it so I can finally get something done!

We also got a package from grandma, grandpa, and grandmere. Vivi's favorite part? The box of popcorn. Please notice the pile of presents untouched off to the side:

Try as I might, I couldn't take her attention away from the box of popcorn. So I decided to embrace that and poured it all into a shallower box that she could sit and play in. She loved it:


I cut off the lid sides, and it is now a "sandbox" in Vivi's room, which she plays in every day. As for the actual toys, we've been pulling out one every few days so she has one new thing to focus on at a time. She loves them and is getting pretty good at fitting a triangle into a triangle hole on one of the gifts. But I'm getting a little tired of hearing "She'll Be Comin' 'Round the Mountain" from the barn toy on the fridge -- which has one button she won't stop pushing. All day. She LOVES it. But as hard as she tries, she can't match the front and back of the same animal. We'll work on that.

I'm adding this picture in here just so you can see how darn cute she is in pigtails. Plus, I want you to see how daddy babysits:

And I'll throw in some pictures from our last FHE to the town park before it got too cold.

This one I'm adding just because I love her little butt ruffles (Thanks Aunt Gale!):

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Genevieve is one year old!

My little baby turned one on October 1st. Oh, how the time as flown. It seems like only yesterday we were still with her in the hospital. I don't miss that.

Besides, she's so cute NOW!

Before we look at all the birthday celebration stuff, let's admire her handiwork when she found mommy's lipstick. It's kind of amazing that she knew where to put it:

Genevieve's birthday wasn't the best of days, but she didn't care. She got cake! She didn't eat much of it because she was so busy playing with it:

Vivi got bubbles for her birthday. Let's compare enthusiasms, shall we?

But she finally caught on to the fun of it:

We also have lots of fun pictures of V playing with her gifts from grandma, grandpa, nana, papa, and grandmere. I'll wait a few days to post those because I don't want this post to get too long. And I'm bored of waiting for the videos to upload and process. But they're very cute, so check back in a few days!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Saint Louis Videos

Finally, more videos of my gorgeous girl.

This one is my favorite. We call it "The Aww Game." She just kind of picked it up on her own and LOVES it. How does it work? Just watch:

So. Many. Buttons.

One quick close up. Just 'cause it's cute.

V LOVES water. But hates pools. We think it's because they're cold. And yes, I know my baby is chunky. I love it.

This one's fuzzy because I had the video on the wrong setting. I was very sad because it's so cute. So I'm posting it anyway. She's pretty good on the telephone, isn't she?

Water spouts:

Playing in a fountain:

The magic house had this awesome slide. It was kind of squishy, so V could sort of stick to it and climb it all by herself. Then she even liked going down by herself! This video is the tail end of her climbing it. I tried to move so you could see her face after going down, but I blocked it. She was beaming.

The first video is my favorite. Which one is your favorite?

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Saint Louis Pictures

Ryan had management training in Saint Louis last week, so we bought an extra ticket and V and I went with him. We had so much fun! Ryan's family drove down from Chicago, and we played in the city. I've got a lot of photos and videos, but this post will just be photos. I'll do the videos later. I realized as I looked through the pictures that they're pretty much all just Genevieve. But that's all you want to see anyway, right?

Also, I'm about to buy a Stage 2 carseat for V. Anyone have good recommendations for features or a model I should look for?

The Saint Louis zoo was AMAZING. It's my new favorite zoo, and we didn't even see half of it. Here's V in the children's area, playing with the water spouts. She LOVED it:

REALLY loved it:

Here's Vivi playing in the dirt and bark outside our hotel room. She loves getting messy:

We went to the most amazing children's museum, called the Magic House. I would have LOVED it as a kid. Here's Vivi playing in the water area:

Blake, Ethan, and V in the sand area:

My beautiful girl:

Public nudity (she rolled around in the dirt a bit and needed to clean off):

Sunday, September 12, 2010

My Big Girl

This was back in July, but I couldn't post it. She's so big!

Mary, Mary, quite contrary, how does your garden grow?

Very well, thank you.

V's favorite pastime:

More to come. Yay!


Check it out!!! I can post again! what did I do? Wait. Weird, huh? It still just shows text until I actually post it, which is super annoying, but at least it works.

Friday, July 23, 2010

help me

Just in the past few days, I haven't been able to post videos. I go through all of the steps to post one, and then instead of the black box coming up, a line of text does. It says it's uploading, but then it doesn't. Anyone know what to do?

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

My little pianist

A musician in the making:

Saturday, June 26, 2010


Yes, it is awkward, and half scooting. But that's how she's doing it for now.

Isn't that adorable??

Friday, June 25, 2010

She's crawling!

(This is Ryan) Holly has been extremely busy these last two weeks. I've been lucky to spend more time with Vivi. About a week ago, she started taking her first forward movements. Then, one day as I was eating my dinner on the floor and playing with Vivi, she made her first big move. The dog was by me and she crawled toward the dog and when she got close she started giggling. She reached for the dog and the dog moved to the other side of the room. She turned around and went for him again. And like before, she started gigling as she approached Toby. Toby moved and it started all over agian. Unfortunately Holly had the camera or I would had put it on the site. For some reason, Vivi thinks Toby is the funniest thing on earth even though Toby can't stand her.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Signing Time

My little girl loves Signing Time. The other day Ryan and I tried to put on a Fraggle Rock cartoon for her instead. She got excited when she saw the TV turn on, and then she FREAKED OUT when Fraggle Rock started and it wasn't Signing Time.

This video was taken the day before. Check out how much she loves this show:

Friday, June 18, 2010

Videos from Raleigh

Here are some video clips from our trip to Raleigh. First, Vivi's new best friend:

Zoo fun:

Fun with cousin Lila:

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Recent Pictures

Today I finally downloaded pictures from my camera and discovered that I had over 160 of them. So I'm gonna give you an onslaught of my favorites:

We start 'em young:

I posted videos earlier of our trip to the Denver aquarium. Here's a picture. She loved the rainbow fish, but most of the time she was more interested in mommy and daddy than in the fish. I feel like there's a lesson in that...

Playing with daddy. Living in Paonia, even visiting a Barnes & Noble is like a theme park:

Wait, how did she get in there?

Vivi and her favorite snack. Paper.

From our visit home to Raleigh. BFFs:

Strawberry picking:

Fun at the zoo:

This is my favorite picture from the zoo. It was a long, hot, and fun day, and when we were done we got on the bus to get back to the parking lot. I took Vivi out of her stroller and set her down to give her some tummy time on the seat. After 1.7 seconds, she fell asleep like this:
With Aunt Nelly at Jack's birthday party:


Vivi's a little fascinated with Jonah:

Can't you tell?

Vivi and grandma:

Vivi and grandmere:

Vivi and grandpa:

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Admire my baby. Do it.

JUST TRY to tell me this baby isn't stinkin' adorable:

Monday, May 10, 2010

What the What?

About 3 weeks ago, our local newspaper published an ad looking for an appointee to the district school board. One of the elected members had to withdraw because of health issues, and the remaining school board members needed to choose someone to replace him for the remainder of the term -- about a year and a half. I decided to apply.

A week later, I got a letter saying that the appointee would be chosen after a public Q&A panel with the 6 applicants. I spent the week researching and preparing, and last Thursday I was on a panel with the other applicants. A moderator asked us questions, chosen by the school board, on a rotating basis. It was very intimidating.

Then, about 10 minutes ago, I got a call saying the board picked me. I am now a district school board member.

What the what??

Bring it.

Friday, May 7, 2010


I am giddy! Tomorrow Vivi and I go home to North Carolina, and we'll be there for 2 weeks. Every time I look at her, I'm just SO EXCITED for my family to love and adore her, as they're bound to do.


Tuesday, April 27, 2010


This weekend, Ryan and I took our baby to Denver for the weekend. The drive there was AWFUL. There was a snowstorm around Vail, and it took us 8 hours to make the 4 hour trip.

Saturday, we all went to the aquarium. She was still a little tired from the crazy schedule the day before, but when we saw the rainbow fish, she woke right up. Check out how cute she is:

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Glee Personal Statement

I have no chance. I know that. But I had SOOOOOO much fun making a Glee audition tape. Here's my personal statement:

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Our Country Girl

A future 4H-er in the making:

Friday, April 2, 2010

6 Months

Two days ago my baby turned 6 months old. I can't believe it! Sometimes I look at her and am shocked that she is so big! But I'm not sad; she just keeps getting cuter.

Here are some videos. They're nothing in particular -- just Vivi being Vivi.

And my favorite, the belly laugh. Sorry it's moving so much; I couldn't stop laughing myself!