Sunday, November 24, 2013

Chase's Journey

I know it's been months since I've posted, and life is well- life. But after having a brief breather from school, and seeing a beyond-inspirational video in the virtual world, I wanted to put together a video compilation of Chase's first year...

Monday, August 12, 2013

August Has Arrived!



Despite it being my least favorite time of year, we've kept busy and tried to keep balance... easier said than done! I looked back through the last couple weeks of photos and realized a) there aren't many for once, b) many are of food challenges/accomplishments as we play with our Master Chef challenges, and c) most of the photos that do exist of the kids are of them getting into trouble. So... with that, I'll try to share the few good ones I have :) 



Chase at Calvin's 3rd birthday party!


 The kiddos as part of the "Facepainting Extravaganza" we did for Aunt Julz' portfolio building... nothing like 20+ kids over for a few hours running around like nut cases... very... long... day... !!!!



Chase deciding that my looking away for 60 seconds was a great opportunity to grab his oatmeal for himself... this stuff is AWFUL to clean up! 

And the lovely, ungrateful bug Kaely with her complaining about summer... One more week until school is back in!

Chase has been running through the house now (literally), and takes great pride in helping with dusting, vacuuming, putting away dishes, and especially throwing away trash (and things that aren't really trash)- including his "stinky" diapers (as he says the whole way to the trash). More and more he insists on self-feeding, or feeding others- like the dogs and fish- which can be messy, but he's getting pretty good at it. I realize how much he understands now, and well, it's kind of scary!

His newer words and phrases (in addition to the list from 2 months ago) include:
-grapes (one of my favs for some reason- it's just so cute/funny the way he says it)
-apples
-drink (close enough)
-crackers
-cookies (Dave's fav word that he says- he gets so excited over cookies!)
-food (fish food, dog food, just plain FOOD!)
-book 
-key
-kitty
-duck
-bear
-chicken
-(insert animal sounds for horse, pig, chicken, sheep, bird, spraying sound for spray bottles (zssstt, zssst) or snoring for sleep)
-baby (this is also said in a whiny voice as his way of asking to be picked up and carried around like a baby)
-"good girl" 
-sit/sit down (most of this relates to the dogs)
-up/down
-eyes
-ears
-feet
-teeth
-shoes
-brush (comes out like... I'm not sure what- but it's regarding brushing his teeth)
-Daddy! (sounds different from before- now he says it with humor)
-"Where-did-it-go?" (I need to get this on video to get the sound of how he says it)
-Whats'up
-yuck/gross/stinky (all of the above- of which he cries "STINKY!" in public after he has a dirty diaper)
-milk (comes out as 'gilk')
-light (comes out as 'gight')

On that note I have realized lately that he does not pronounce "L, M, or N"- hence, no "mommy"- so "milk" is "gilk" and "No" is "bow"... kind of backwards on what most kids do, but he also uses a lot of "F, S, TH," etc. So it balances out in my mind.  I know I'm missing other phrases, but it's late and my brain has stopped working :) 

He still favors his left hand with eating or different activities- but uses his right hand a lot too. Who knows (and who cares? Honestly)! But it may help explain how he does things in a different manner and on his own schedule. LOL, I'm sure I'll be seeking answers to that puzzling thing for many years to come. 

To say the last couple weeks have been challenging would be an understatement, but what is our life without a little wrench or two to add to the mix? At the end of the day we can't complain too much... but when we have that first morning of cool air in the fall return while everyone is in school and we are back on some sort of schedule again? Well, it will be a wonderful, wonderful day! 

Friday, July 19, 2013

And They Just Won't Stop...

These kids are C-R-A-Z-Y!

Crazy-fun that is! Well, at least most the time :) I have been pleasantly surprised how much fun we've had the past week considering it's summer and we get cabin fever. However, the kids have found ways to have fun in the most unusual places and manners.

Such as Chase and the vacuum- honestly- him and this vacuum!

Or this poor toy stroller (once again)- they busted the wheel off it shortly after this was taken... BOYS!

Or the box that the ceiling fan came in- converted to an airplane...

Or later converted to a train... 


Or the dog leash on Sissy...


Or helping mom with chores...


Or waiting for the bread to finish baking...

and moving furniture throughout the house... or the darn box again- seriously- do NOT buy toys- just go to the store and pick up a free box!!!



And you can't forget summer treats best worn all over!


Never a dull moment!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Welcome to our Lemonade Stand

When life throws you a bag of lemons (or a truckload) what do you do? You make lemonade!

It's a good thing Dave LOVES lemons, and well, the kids and I are pretty good at whipping up a batch of sweet lemonade to share around. That is... find the good in any situation and run with it! I think it's life's way of making you appreciate the simpler things and to get creative and resourceful for survival.

It's hard to believe it's already been a couple of weeks since the 4th of July festivities, and the summer is flying by whether we're ready or not. Did I mention Chase is full on walking now? Attempting to run, but still toddling more than anything.. He is so proud of himself, and is enjoying the new-found skill (at least we did it by the 18 month mark- sheesh!)

We had a get-together to celebrate (Aunt) Julia's 26th birthday, (Uncle) Brandon's 19th, and Kaely's 8th birthday with a "typical" family (chaotic) dinner. Always a bustle of energy and craziness!

JessikaKazaros's 2013 Kaely Julz and Brandon Bday Party album on Photobucket


I also had to work on a school project for my Cultural Diversity course which meant exploring an ethnic restaurant that I had never been to. When I thought about this, I realized there weren't many types of foods I hadn't tried at least once, except Indian food. So while we had originally planned a nice date night out for Dave and I to check out the local restaurant (Passage to India), I realized that clearly wasn't going to happen, so instead I took both kids along with me. I was terrified- honestly. It's hard enough trying to take them anywhere with help, but going by myself? and with food they were likely not going to like? ACK! So, going for dinner at 4:30 pm, and was welcomed with an empty restaurant (briefly- but gratefully). Kaely amazingly went along with the rule of at least trying things, and Chase? Well, as usual he ate it all. It was a really awesome experience!

JessikaKazaros's Passage to India album on Photobucket


We were also fortunate enough to have received a new hammock, which has been the highlight at the summer apparently. It has made the usually oppressively hot and muggy summer, bearable and thoroughly enjoyable. Everyone has been fighting over who gets to 'play' in it, and we've spent so much more time outdoors just enjoying the simple things.

JessikaKazaros's Backyard Fun album on Photobucket


That also includes the inflatable water/splash area for the kiddos- if it didn't kill the yard I'd leave it out all the time!

Kaely also found her stash of toys in the garage (from back in December when she got in trouble), so the baby doll stroller had become the (short-lived) fun indoors- it was NOT meant for little toddler butts (much less Kaely's much larger one!) to sit in, but at that point it was worth the laughs. Chase even spent time pushing Kaely around the house in it- hilarious!


As usual, our days often revolve around food- and Chase has learned really quickly that yummy things come out of the oven. He loves standing there staring at whatever is baking- or trying to climb the darn oven. UGH!


We've also picked up the ability to "Pimp Out My Ride"- I actually googled how to pimp out my bicycle, and had a good laugh over all that I found. What can I say? Chase is loving it!!




As the summer of Master Chef continues as well, we had to do proper research on what the heck a macaron (not a macaroon) tasted like. So... off we went to the French bakery down the road- the little pink thing? Yep, that's it. At $1.60 a cookie (holy crap!) I had high hopes before I attempted to make it (part of the pressure test on the show a couple weeks ago). A bit (waaaayyy) too sweet for my taste, but I believe if I can ever find almond flour... challenge accepted! The kids had a blast with watching the bustle of the bakery while we ate our choquettes and Kae's cinnamon roll (big surprise!). 



Chase and I even made the 5 1/2- 6 mile (almost 12 miles roundtrip) trek to Target the other day on the bike, and minus the rain on the way back- I was shocked to realize- hey! I can do this! (Okay, Dave wants me to carry a taser now- but still!) This is better than a gym- Chase is happy as pie being outdoors and on the bike, and I get a ton of exercise, save money on gas, and it's better for the environment!

Sure, things are a little more challenging- but isn't that what I usually enjoy in life? My sister has been gracious enough to help me out so I can still continue to volunteer at the hospital, which was honestly my biggest concern- but I still get to go. If I can help even just one mom (like the one who was struggling with a friend of hers continuing to give unsolicited advice- just reassuring her that she is the boss of that baby- empowerment!), it makes it worthwhile.

It's exciting to realize what we're capable of when put to the test- so with that? I will sit here and sip on this delicious lemonade ;)

Friday, July 5, 2013

Jumpin' July!

Time is flying, and so is Chase! He has really picked up the walking skill, and is starting to fly down the halls (still a bit on the clumsy side, but every day is an improvement!). It has been actually kind of fun watching both boys now, as they play together more and more- minus the arguing over toys constantly. However, Chase is a little boy now- not a baby- and it's crazy to see the changes happen.








Self-feeding is... well... a form of messy entertainment at the very least!


Chase continues to try to help with every house project- how exciting the weekend of plumbing was!





We also had the 4th of July, and kept it low key- most importantly the kids had fun and were well worn out!

Jessika128's The 4th album on Photobucket



Happy July everyone!

Friday, June 28, 2013

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Green Meadows Petting Farm (June 19th)

Whoops- meant to post this last week! Just a bunch of pictures from our trip to the petting zoo with Kaely, Nathan, Aunt Raeshel and Chase. Chase was absolutely enthralled! Aside from my OCD nature over hand washing, it was an awesome (kept strategically short) trip!























The full show can be seen :

Jessika128's Green Meadows June 2013 album on Photobucket