Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Dilly Man

Dylan is now in his big boy bed 100% of the time. We took down his crib a couple of weekends ago, and he's doing really well staying in his bed. He likes to fall asleep with a light on now, so we got him a little nightlight that he likes to turn on before bed and off in the morning. When he wakes up, he's funny because he will get out of bed and turn on his big light but then get back in bed and wait for us to come get him up.

His current obsession is cars, especially anything having to do with Lightning McQueen and the Cars movie. He can also recognize and identify many types of cars from his own Matchbox car collection and on the road, including Mini Coopers, cars with no tops (convertibles), Jeep cars, Herbie cars (beetles), hot rods, Grand Prix's, GTO's, Mustangs, police cars, cement mixers, and the list goes on. He sure has a lot of Matt in him, although we've noticed that this car fixation is taking a toll on his basketball skills (his previous obsession).

Twice the fun!

For all of you out there wondering if it's time for another baby, here is a bit of propaganda. Look at that extra set of hands! Wouldn't that be helpful?? Plus, they play together ALL the time and never fight. You should definitley have another one...

We call her "Trouble"

Ella's first tooth broke through today! It seems like she's been working on it for a long time, so we're glad it finally made its appearance. It's funny because Dylan's first tooth broke through when he was 8 1/2 months old too...almost to the exact same day - his came in August 3, hers July 31 (I know that because I wrote it down, not because I have a freakishly good memory). Someone recently told me that it's hereditary...not sure if it's true, but sure seems like it.

In other Ella news, she is officially pulling herself up to her feet. Seems a teensy bit early to us, but she is very determined. She is also knocking over floor lamps, crawling under beds, pulling her brother's hair, and getting stuck in tight spaces. I think we have our hands full with this one.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Nothing to do on a rainy day

This post is dedicated to my big brother, who also used to delight in pushing his baby sister around in a laundry basket (or a boat, as Dylan likes to call it).

Friday, July 20, 2007

Thursdays in the Park

My friend Katie had a brilliant idea earlier this summer to organize a mass play date in a different area park every Thursday morning. The kids and I have been trying to hit as many as possible. This week I was able to snap a couple of pictures to capture the fun. If you are a mom out there, looking for some fun on Thursday mornings, let me know and I'll tell you where we're meeting next!

Ella Jeanne with her future husband, Xavier Dean (get it?...their names ryhme)

Three Katie's! My friend Katie (left) with her son Xavier and Baby #2 (coming soon); our friendship goes back to when we first met as three year olds at church. My other dear friend Katie (center, and the Thursdays in the Park organizer) and her son Drew; we go back to those wonderful years known as junior high. Both of their friendships has meant so much to me through the years and it's fun to watch our kids become friends too.

Second Cousins

This past week, we got to spend some time with my cousins and Dylan and Ella's second cousins. We saw my cousin Bob and his wife Melinda and their little girl Kendall, my cousin Laurel and her little girl Addie (husband Josh was at home working), and my cousin Ivy and her husband and daughter Mia. Dylan loved all his girl "cousins" since he is used to playing with only his boy cousins, Isaac and Nicko. Ella loved playing with Kendall and Addie (above) and I loved those little girls curls!

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Party at my crib

Apparently my kids really like hanging out in each other's cribs. Here is Ella living it up in Dylan's crib (I helped her in...she didn't crawl in by herself like Dylan does :))

Baby Jail

As a follow-up to my last post, the baby gate is now installed at the top of the stairs, so you can stop worrying about Ella taking any more tumbles. Now, if only she can figure out a way to break out of here...

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Bad Mom Club

Ella is really crawling all around now, and this morning she "crawled" her way right down the stairs. It was one of those things where we just turned our back for a minute (Matt was still home) and the next thing we knew, we heard a thud. The good news is that we live in a bi-level so it was really only half a flight of stairs, but the bad news is that we have ceramic tile at the bottom. The really good news is that she is perfectly fine. She cried for a couple of minutes and I aplogized to her profusely, and then she was over it.

To my credit, I have never let a child roll off a bed (a common offense in the Bad Mom Club) but apparently I do let them fall down stairs (Dylan has also taken a couple of tumbles, but he was much older). At least it will give them something to talk to their therapists about someday.

And I know, I know...the gate is definitely going up today.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007


We sold Matt's Grand Prix today. We are glad we are back to just having two cars instead of three, and Matt feels good because he sold it to another Grand Prix enthusiast who will take good care of it (I can't even begin to explain to you the bond Matt had with that car).

Now...does anyone need a house?

1st Place!

I figured I should post the "trophy picture" from the Grandville 4th of July tourney since it was such a hard fought battle for first. Besides playing basketball all day in the summer heat, they were also short a guy for half the day. Way to bring home the trophy, guys, two years in a row!

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Katie's Book Club, Part II

We just started a new series at our church called God is Green...yes, we are talking about all the environment stuff that seems to be all over these days. I have never considered myself to be much of an environmentalist (aside from trying not to blatantly litter), but I am being challenged to reconsider. The speaker this morning, Dr. J. Matthew Sleeth, author of Serve God, Save the Planet: A Christian Call to Action, shared his personal journey of integrating his faith and his sense that something needs to be done about the declining state of the natural world around us. I haven't actually read his book yet, but I plan to. Here's the synopsis from Amazon, in case you're interested. You can also visit his site at http://www.servegodsavetheplanet.org/.

"Five years ago Dr. J. Matthew Sleeth and his family lived in a big house, had two luxury cars, loads of money, and lots of stuff. As chief of the medical staff at a large hospital, Sleeth was living the American dream--until he realized that something was terribly wrong. As he saw patient after patient suffering from cancer, asthma, and other chronic diseases, he began to understand that the Earth and its inhabitants were in trouble. Feeling helpless, he turned to his faith for guidance. He discovered how the timeless lessons of personal responsibility, simplicity, and stewardship taught in the Bible could be applied to modern life. The Sleeths have since sold their big home and given away more than half of what they once owned. In Serve God, Save the Planet, Sleeth shares the joy of adopting a less materialistic lifestyle, and reveals what was easy and what was hard about the changes his family has made. Drawing on science and religion, Sleeth builds a bridge between environmentalists and mainstream Christians. He and his family are harbingers of the creation care movement, which calls on all those who love God to love our planet. Sleeth shares how material downscaling led his family to healthier lifestyles, stronger relationships, and richer spiritual lives. Serve God, Save the Planet is more than a book: it is a prescription for taking personal responsibility for global survival."

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Happy 4th of July!

We spent that day watching Matt playing in the Grandville 3-on-3 basketball tournament (they took 1st!!) and then we went to Matt's parents' house for dinner. Dylan had one of the best days of his life to date...watching Daddy, Uncle Brandon, Uncle Chad, and Mr. Ross play basketball, jumping in a giant bouncey thing, roasting marshmallows with Papa, and catching Lightening McQueen bugs (lightening bugs). A fun day, but we are all exhausted, especially Matt, whose body protests after playing basketball almost continuously from 8 until 5!

Tea Party

We found this little plastic tea set downtown Holland last weekend that I insisted on buying for Ella (right now her favorite toys are Dylan's cars and balls...I thought it was time to get some girl toys in the house). Here are a couple pictures of her playing with it at the condo.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Katie's Book Club

I just finished reading Karin Evan's The Lost Daughters of China and I highly recommend it. The book is about the little girls in China who are given up/abandoned and is "part memoir, part travelogue, part East-West cultural commentary, and part adoption how-to." I have a special interest in Chinese adoptions for a couple of reasons: #1, my paternal grandparents were born in Shanghai (making me 50% Chinese); #2, my brother and sister-in-law are currently in the process of adopting a baby girl from China; and #3, Matt and I have always thought about adopting a child down the road, and China is near the top of the list (see points #1 & #2).

Go ahead and read it, let me know when you're done, and we'll discuss.

Sunday, July 1, 2007

Spyglass Beach

My favorite boys.

Ella Bella. Just can't stop taking pictures of her.

House Update

After a busy week with three showings, last week was a slow house week. One funny thing that happened though is that we found out that one of the couples who went through our house are customers of Matt's. We had heard through the realtors that they recognized Matt's picture, but we didn't know who they were. They ended up coming in last week and buying a car and told him they went through our house. They were the couple who had it narrowed down to our house and another one. Unfortunately for us, they ended up buying the other house (newer and slightly more expensive), but they had really nice things to say about our house which was encouraging. They told Matt they had been through a lot of houses in our price range, and ours was definitely one of the nicest. The upside of this couple not buying our house is that they would have needed to be in by July 22 which would have left us "homeless" for a couple of months. Pictures of our house are on-line now, so hopefully that brings some more traffic. We are still trusting God and staying pretty stress-free :)
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