more sprinkles = more fun...

Lately, one of Charlie's favorite things to do is help me in the kitchen. Unfortunately for the poor kid, I am hardly ever in the kitchen longer than it takes to start the microwave! So, last week I decided we should make sugar cookies together. We cheated and used a mix, but I don't think he would have been up for making them from scratch.
Making sure the dough is just perfect....

Smile for the camera...

Now let's make sure the frosting tastes just right...

Hmmmmm...I wonder which one is his?

In scrapbooking news, I finished up my projects for Freehand Scraps! This kit was so very fun to work with. I loved all the yellow and black and white this month. Here is a little peek at the minibook I did, the rest of the pictures will be in the gallery at the website on the 4th. The kit will be up for sale tomorrow!

On a quick sidenote, when I was taking the photos of my projects Charlie was very confused as to why I was not pointing the camera at him. He kept trying to poke his head in and was screaming "cheese"! So funny.

it has been pretty quiet around here...

We had a nice, quiet Easter this year. In the morning we took Charlie to IHOP, which he adores for some reason I have yet to figure out. Once we got there we realized they had all kinds of Horton Hears A Who specials so Charlie was thrilled about his Who cakes and green eggs and ham. I wish I would have had the camera for that one. I think that was the most he has ever eaten for breakfast! Later in the evening we went over to Grandpa Rodger and Grandma Nita's house for dinner and an egg hunt. Charlie was much more excited to play with Todd and Zina's kids (Todd is Anita's son). He LOVES those kids and they are so sweet to him. They range from age 6-13 so they are much older, but they always play games with him and they are so sweet and gentle. Once they arrived Charlie could care less about the egg hunt. As you will notice by the pictures, he was just going through the motions to please us, but he could not wait to get back to playing with the kids. I am glad to see him so comfortable with other kids, something he is still working on.

The best family photo we were going to get.

He looks thrilled, doesn't he?

Other than Easter we have been working a lot. Eric has needed quite a bit of help with flyers and other paperwork stuff so I have been working on that when I can.

I did receive my April Freehand Scraps kit and it is so CUTE! Heidi did a great job putting this one together. I am looking forward to sitting down with it tomorrow and making some fun stuff for the website.

Hope you all had a wonderful Easter! :D

"it's easter day!"

This is what Charlie kept saying this morning as he drug his easter basket around the house ready to gather the chocolate filled eggs! I kept telling him that today was not actually Easter, but just the egg hunt - I don't think I ever got that through to him. He even decided that he was going to skip lunch to be sure that he would have enough room for all the candy that he would be getting. Luckily, after the egg hunt he was so into the playground that I was able to hide his candy and he only ate one piece of it. Here are some pictures from the day:

Proof that daddy was not the Easter Bunny this year:
On the potty training front, we are on day three of no accidents. I really cannot believe it! Go Charlie! :)

he is very proud of himself...

Well, although I am not ready to claim complete victory because I know how potty training can go, I am happy to say that Charlie has gone 2 days without any accidents!! He really is so happy with himself and of course, so are we! Treats are totally his currency (wonder where he got that from, hmmm) so we have been giving him a small piece of candy when he goes on the potty. He has even taken his independence a step further in insisting that he pull up/down his underwear himself and that he open his candy by himself. The underwear thing is big because he has not shown much interest in dressing himself until now. Wow, so much progress in just a week!

Not much other news around here except that we have the neighborhood Easter Egg Hunt tomorrow. Eric used to be the Easter Bunny for this event the last few years, but this year he said he did not want to do it so that he can enjoy it with Charlie and I. Charlie was talking about how he is getting very excited for the hunt and he said "I am going to find eggs and they will have chocolate in them. And daddy is going to wear the bunny suit." I can't wait to see his face when he realizes that daddy is not the Easter Bunny!

finally, some cards!

So, I finally got around to making some cards. They aren't the best pictures but I think they the cards turned out okay!

This one I made for Rodger's birthday:

These two I made last night:

And these two I made at an Archiver's class called "Simple and Sassy"

These cards have a ton of stamping which I don't usually do a ton of, but I loved these cards! Definitely makes me want to do more stamping on my cards.

We are having an employee crop on Sunday so I am looking forward to having some time to scrapbook. I ordered some pictures online earlier this week from our trip to California. So, hopefully those will get here in time. I will be sure to share my pages if I get anything done! :)

potty training progress...

Yesterday I decided to get serious about potty training. There has been a lot of potty talk around the house the last few months, but we never really pushed the issue. I think by noon, Charlie was already in his third pair of underwear and he had peed on the carpet twice. Not a good start. He did go potty in his potty chair before his nap and again after dinner - after we caught him starting to go in his pants. Nonetheless, there was lots of praise and special treats! Today has been a little better. He seems to be scared to go which concerns me a little. He is just sooooo sensitive and I think he is a little confused about the whole process. Let's hope for more success tomorrow! I am feeling crafty tonight so I think I am going to go make some cards. If all goes well, hopefully I can share some pictures of them tomorrow.

march for babies

*edited* - The badge on the right was not updating with the donations, so I have just added a link to click on if you would like to donate. Thanks again!

As you proably have noticed from the badge on the right side of this blog, Eric and I are going to be walking in the March for Babies this year. We have wanted to participate every year since Charlie was born, but we never did and always felt bad. This year, Eric was up late one night watching TV and a March of Dimes commercial came on that brought tears to his eyes (I cry everytime I see them too!) and he immediately got on their website and signed us up. I am so glad he did and we can't wait to do it on April 26th! If any of you feel led to donate some money to this cause we would greatly appreciate it. Just click on "donate" on the badge.

So many of us are faced with different challenges in life and I used to question why this had to be ours, but I have come to accept and embrace it and feel like I must do all I can to help the cause.

When I look at the pictures from Charlie's first few months of life I wonder how can this be the same little three year old that I know now? The one that leaves toys all over my house, the one that likes to test his limits, the one that loves to sing and play music, the one that brings so much incredible joy to our lives?
This week Eric was talking to a couple in the sales office that were interested in building a home. He recognized the gentleman, but could not figure out from where. He mentioned that he worked at Saint Al's, and right away figured out that it was Forrest, Charlie's respiratory therapist when he was in the NICU. Forrest was such a sweet man and he was great at his job. He knew how to make us comfortable and explain things in a way so we could understand. God definitely had all his angels working on Charlie those first few weeks. Forrest mentioned that Charlie is still the smallest boy they have ever had at Saint Al's NICU (that lived), can you believe it? What a miracle he is. I know that Forrest was put in Eric's life this week to encourage us. It has been a few years since this all happened and the fresh emotion of it has worn off so it is easy to put it in the back of our minds and worry about "today". So now it is out - you guys know we have committed to this and we hope you will support us. :)
Here is that three year old that we are going to be walking for on April 26th. If you are local, you can always join us too! Let me know if you are interested :)

happy birthday grandpa rodger!

Happy Birthday to you! Rodger is such a sweet and kind man, I am lucky to have him as a father in law. He has been a wonderful dad to Eric and an even better grandpa. You can tell he is absolutely in LOVE with Charlie. He is always the first to get down on the floor to play trucks and make funny sounds and songs. It is always such a joy to see Charlie light up when he sees his Grandpa Rodger.

So, Happy Birthday Rodger! We love you.

things that are making me happy today...

Yesterday Charlie and I went to a Spring Planting Party that was hosted by Lori from MOMS Club. It was windy so it was a little cold, but Charlie was thilled to spend some time outside at the park. I brought the camera with me because I am trying to get some more everyday shots of him and just trying to document things better in general (hence two blog posts in a row! woo hoo!)

Other things that have made me happy this week:

- Charlie is in love with the TV show "Deal or No Deal", except he calls it "No Deal or No Deal". We were at Kohl's the other night and he found a little handheld Deal or No Deal game. He plopped right down on the ground and puched the buttons and laughed and laughed. It was so cute. Eric was not going to let him get it, but I talked him into it and it has been one of the best toy purchases we have ever made! He asks for it first thing in the morning and he is always trying to get one of us to play with him. The last few nights he has been asking if he can have a No Deal or No Deal party. I am not sure about that but am very amused by his obsession.

- Yesterday we were walking up to Walmart to get some groceries and it was windy as I mentioned earlier. Charlie says to me "Mom, it smells like windy today."

- Charlie has decided his favorite cereal is "peanut butter pieces cups" (aka Reeses Peanut Butter Cups).

- Eric caught the mouse that has been living in his Land Rover (eeeeeww!). He did not want to use d-con or the glue traps because he did not want to find the mouse alive, but after a week of no success, I finally bought one of the glue traps at Walmart yesterday. This morning Eric was happy to announce that the mouse had been caught, although it was still alive on the trap this morning and Eric was traumatized! I would be too, but I am just happy it has been caught. Now let's just hope there was only one!

- I have been eating way too many of these:

They are just plain chocolate, so I don't know why I love them so much but they are my favorite Easter candy.

I am off to work for tonight!

i am back and fully recovered, finally!......

Well, we are back from California and happy to say that the family is finally healthy and back to normal! I was still sick the day before I was supposed to leave, so my mom and dad finally talked me into going to the doctor. Sure enough, I had a sinus infection and a double ear infection. Ugh. Luckily, the antibiotics kicked in quickly and I was feeling good and ready to take on CHA! It was so nice to see Heidi and spend this time together. Heidi is living her dream and has decided to start up a kit club company. I am so proud of her! It was such a treat to be able to spend time with her, but add to that being surrounded by brand-new scrapbooking products and it was heaven! I am not sure how much help I was to Heidi while we were there, but it did make me see how hard it must be for Heidi to run her business. There are sooo many cute products out there! :)

Here is Heidi and I meeting Heidi Swapp at the show! Heidi Swapp was very sweet and she had some very cute products at the show. The best part was seeing all the page samples in real life, they are so much better than they are on the internet.

After Heidi left, the rest of the fam and I went to Disneyland. We were all very excited to see what he was going to think of this place. The day did not start off the best. Charlie was pretty crabby in the morning so I just kept hoping that he would snap out of it once we got there. Of course, he was overwhelmed at first. He wanted to be very close to us as he took it all in. We wandered around for a little while and decided to start out slow by going on the Mark Twain boat ride. Everybody was underwhelmed by this so we headed straight to Pirates of the Carribbean after it was over. This turned out to be a big mistake. I am not sure why I did not put it together before we went on the ride, but darkness + water + loud noises are not Charlie's favorite things, especially all at once. Charlie tried to be brave at first, but once he got one single drip of water on him, he was in meltdown mode. He was sure he was going to get drenched and just kept screaming "I don't want to get wet!" Eric is always so good at comforting him when he needs it, so he scooped him right up and had Charlie put his head on his shoulder while he covered his ears from the noise. The ride could not end soon enough. We took it easy after this and ate some food and wandered the park some more. We really wanted to do the new Nemo Submarine ride but the line was way too long. We did go on the Roger Rabbit ride and Autotopia. By far Charlie's favorite part of the park was Toontown. We toured Mickey Mouse's house and saw Minnie and Pluto. So fun!

Charlie meeting Mickey Mouse

Charlie the Disneyland tour guide, the ears make him official

We also went to the beach while we were visiting. It was a pretty chilly day. Again, Charlie was not too thrilled with the experience. He wanted nothing to do with the sand/water. So we spent just a short time at the actual beach and then walked aound Balboa Island.

Merry-go-round fun with grandpa (I think he enjoyed this just as much as anything at Disney! I think we could have saved ourselves some money and gone straight here!)

We spent the rest of the time spending time with family. Jon drove in from Vegas to spend a few days with us but he ended up being sick most of the time. Charlie got to meet a lot of new faces including the Kingma's, the San Paolo's and all of my dad's side of the family.

Charlie enjoying a game of shuffleboard at Grandma Zee's house.

The trip was a great time and I was so relieved that Charlie did much better than our trip to Vegas last summer! The biggest lesson I learned about traveling with the little guy was to think about and cater a little more to who he is. Most kids would have LOVED Disneyland at his age, but I just don't think he was ready. He is always an observer first and I think he just needed much more time to soak it all in. (not that he hated it, I just don't think he was as big a fan as oher kids). The same thing at the beach. He does not really like to get wet or have his hands/feet dirty, so why did I think that he would like the beach??? I really need to think about this stuff more in the future. Of course, I want to keep exposing him to new things, but maybe in the future I can evaluate the situation and adjust my expectations of the experience for Charlie. Isn't it amazing how our kids teach us so much?

So that is the summary of our trip to California. To end it all, my mom and I got sick on the day that we were leaving (thanks Jon!). I was sicker this time than when I had the sinus/ear infections. Too bad it was viral, so medicine was not going to help. I don't think I left the couch for two days. Poor Eric and Charlie! Anyway, we are all better now and things have returned to normal. Halleluijah!