Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

Picnik collage

More Birthdays

Jason has finally entered his third decade. I thought he would never catch up to me, but it feels like he has!

And so we celebrated!

Swimming with the girls in morning.

Lunch date just the two of us (and we even remembered to take a picture).

Pizza and arcades in the evening.

Thirty gifts from the girls and I to celebrate every year Jason has been alive.

And then of course, German Chocolate Cake.
Happy Birthday Jason! We love you!!!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Camping Trip

I have always loved to camp. In fact before I got married I would camp almost every weekend during the summer, even if it just meant throwing a tent up late Friday night in a nearby canyon only to take it down at first light the next morning. When I am in the mountains I feel more alive, more like my true self.

Once I got married and then after Antalya was born, we still camped quite often. In fact, the within a week of Antalya getting released from the Newborn Intensive Care Unit (NICU) the three of us were sitting around a camp fire with friends for the weekend. She was still on oxygen (ya, I know, having my infant and an oxygen tank near a fire is not the smartest thing I have ever done - good thing I'm getting smart with age).

But then life caught up to us. And I suddenly realized it has been almost four years since I have been camping. So when my brother-in-law invited us to go camping with them, Jason and I jumped at the chance.

We were a bit nervous of how they would be with the campfire, how anyone of us would sleep all in one tent, and how to keep Antalya from wandering off, but they both did surprising well. Only once did Antalya wander off, and it doesn't even really count because she went to the horses at the camp next to us, they stayed a safe distance from the fire the whole time, and as far as sleeping in a tent - not a peep all night (which is a complete miracle for Antalya who normally wakes up crying several times a night).

I only got a few pictures before the camera died, but the girls loved roasting hot dogs over the fire, going for a hike the next morning, playing in the hammock, and even taking a short ride on the neighbor's horse.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Just Like Riding a Bike

While we were living in London, we had a small toddler trike that I would push the girls on inside our small flat. I tried over and over to teach Antalya how to pedal the bike, but it seemed she just couldn't get the alternating motion of it.

Several weeks ago, we were at a friends house when Antalya hopped on a trike and starting pedaling down the street. Once the shock of it wore off, I realized a few tears were trickling down my face. I was so proud of her.

Either this is something she learned at nursery in London and the bike we had at our place was just too small for her to pedal, or it just all happened to click at the right moment when she hopped on the trike. But whatever the case, Antalya can now pedal a bike!

Maybe next summer we'll try a two-wheeled bicycle?!

Thursday, July 21, 2011


Here is a post I just found that I had written a couple months ago, but forgot to publish:

Antalya is so excited to be going to Papa's house in a few more days. She's flown on airplanes enough that I think she understands pretty well what is happening. When I pulled out the first suitcase to start packing last week she instantly said, "airplane, papa's house!" Her enthusiasm is wearing off on Victoria who now says "papa's house" whenever we see a airplane.

It's been quite the year for Antalya in terms of growth and development. And since it's been awhile since I have done a post about her, here's a snapshot of Antalya at 4 1/2.

She continues to be an early riser - getting earlier every year. She's now at a 5:30am wake up time - much earlier than this momma would like, but I've learned that there's just not much I can do about it. She is finally sleeping through the night most nights which is something she has always struggled with. She still takes a nap most afternoons - in fact, she is usually more in need of a nap than is Victoria.

She is a thrill-seeker! This week we were at a play place that had some monster-scary slides with a completely vertical drop. There were a few older girls in line for the smallest one, but all were debating on who would go first since they were all too scared. Without batting an eye, Antalya climbed right up in front of all of them and off she went, laughing the whole way down. Next she moved on to the highest one that begins with a two-story vertical drop. As I sent her off the edge, my heart stopped for a moment. But sure enough when she got to the bottom she burst out in laughter and yelled "again". I climbed up on the platform to join her, but after one look down decided it was more than I had the guts for.

Every day at lunch she requests a "cheese-meat-munch" which means a grilled ham and cheese sandwich. It is her absolute favorite and has eaten it nearly every day for about two years.

She loves other people and frequently reaches out to grab other's hands as we walk by or are standing waiting to cross the street. I've try to stop it as much as I can, but most people don't mind. She grabs their hand and then looks up at their face with a huge smile that is full of so much love. People can't help but smile back.

She loves to dance and sing and talk to herself in front of the mirror, using anything she can find as a pretend microphone.

She loves electronics - cameras, computers, phones, stereos. And she seems to just know exactly how to work the devices. If I let her have her way, she would spend all day on the computer.

She is busy, busy, busy. She has always been my little tornado - going from room to room leaving some giant mess to clean up in her wake.

She loves her little sister and is always so thoughtful to share with her, and give her a kiss when she gets hurt or is sad. She is very much the leader and is happy to have Victoria follow her around, and copy her every action.

She gives the biggest, most sincere hugs of anyone I have ever met!

I love you Antalya!!!


Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Look Who's Two!

Picnik collage
Victoria turned two last week and boy did we celebrate! We took the girls out to eat for breakfast (something we do about once a year, and then we remember why we only do it once a year), then to swimming lessons.

When we got back Antalya helped her open her gifts just like a big sister should. Jason spent the two nights prior to her birthday repairing, sanding, and repainting a baby cradle that was my mom's when she was little. It had been broken for years and was on it's way to the trash pile when I rescued it and volunteered Jason to bring it back to life. Victoria loves it!

That night we had a birthday celebration at the park with many of Victoria's cousins. Victoria was heartbroken when the party ended!

Victoria at age two...
  • never stops moving (I don't know where this girl gets her energy)
  • constantly has bruises everywhere (just tonight, while I was in the next room, jumped from the desk to the bed in one giant leap which sent her flying across the bed smacking her forehead so hard against the wall it left a dent in the wall)
  • loves to make up games to play with Antalya
  • goes absolutely crazy for anything sweet - her favorite being marshmallows
  • hates when I leave the room
  • likes to do everything herself
  • loves babies and all animals to the point of going a bit crazy whenever she sees one
  • loves to laugh and scream (usually at the same time)
  • adds so much fun and craziness to our family!