Thursday, September 28, 2006

Out and About

I know it's been a while since I posted anything... My mom reminds me that it's been a while since I've posted any pictures, especially. =) Not much has been going on. Ellie and I have been staying home and Leif and I have been watching the first two seasons of "Lost". Today Eliana and I were out and about, though, and it was good. We did a little errand running (dropping off display layouts at the scrapbooking store, Kmart, dropping off recyclables...) and we spent some time up at Petra. It was supposed to be a quick trip to pick up a couple things, but it turned into almost 2 hours, between students, teachers, and parents. It was good to see people and show off my baby. =) The general consensus there at Petra was that Ellie has red hair. I hadn't really thought about the color of her hair (since she doesn't have a whole lot of it), but both Louise and Hope both decided her hair is red. Hmmm. I guess we'll see. After Petra Leif showed Ellie off again at RightNow. Everyone thinks she's just the cutest baby ever. I won't disagree, I guess. =)

This afternoon and evening Eliana was particularly happy and I got some cute pictures and video of her smiling and squealing. You'll have to wait for the video since my computer shuts of every time I try to save the file. Ergh. Very frustrating. But in the meantime, here are some cute pictures from today and the last week...Eliana this afternoon. Isn't she a cutie?

Awww, there's a smile!

She's figuring out how to play with toys. It's fun.

She also practices trying to put her whole fist in her mouth.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

regaining touch

Over the years I have lost touch with a lot of people. Since we had Ellie, though, people have been resurfacing right and left in my life. It's been really neat to hear about where people are and what they're up to. About the only friend from high school (and elementary and middle school for that matter) that I've kept in touch with is Charlotte, who has been my best friend since we were four. She still lives in my hometown of Longview, so I actually get to see her once a year or so. Other than Charlotte, though, I've not been so great at keeping up with people. Just before Ellie was born, though, I got back in touch with Bethani and just in the last couple weeks I heard from Jessica Taylor out of the blue! We've all got kids now, so it's fun to share pictures and stories and catch up on life in general. I also heard from Allison, my mom's best friend's daughter whom I saw each summer in New Jersey growing up. I haven't talked to her since our last trip to NJ, 10 years ago. She also has a baby girl now and is on the cloth diaper adventure. As for college friends, a few we have kept in touch with regularly, but old college friends have been resurfacing, too! Dana and Jaime and Leslie are a few that have become a part of my ever-growing blogging community. And back in April we saw Katie Morman for the first time in a long time, at JD and Kara's house in Idaho after attending weddings for Rhett Prichard and John "Dad" Fulton. It's been great to see how everyone is doing and seeing where they are in life. So many of our friends are smack in the middle of having and raising little ones. I guess that's what comes with being mid to late 20's and married. So anyone else lurking out there that I haven't heard from in a while?

Friday, September 22, 2006

Pretty in Pink

Some pictures from today. Ellie was dressed all in pink - a color I used to hate. Now that I have a little girl (who looks so good in pink) the color has grown on me...

Ellie likes to kick her legs up in the air when she's laying on her back. I think it's the cutest thing. I think most of the things she does are just the cutest. =) I'm not biased or anything... =) But I remember when I was in yoga there was one pose that the instructor called "happy baby" where you laid on your back and grabbed your toes and rocked back and forth. Ellie doesn't grab her toes yet, but if she's got her legs in the air, it's usually a sign that she's happy.

She also really likes looking at the mobile in her pack and play. I try to put her in the pack and play for at least a few naps a week, so that she gets used to sleeping in different places. I turn the mobile on and she just loves watching it go 'round and 'round. I love these pictures from this afternoon.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Toys, Naps, and Tears

Today we stayed home. For the first time Ellie stretched her feedings from 3 hours to 4. Dr. Benda said she'd be ready to stretch them out any time here, so today I didn't wake her up for each feeding, just let her wake up on her own.
I also drank plenty of water today, something I struggle to do. I've been aiming to drink 2 liters of water each day, but averaging about 1-1.5 liters. I told the Dr. my goal was to drink 2 liters a day and he said that's a good place to start. Basically, 2 liters is the MINIMUM I should be drinking! Ack! So... today I drank water any time I thought of it and just kept refilling my water bottle. I ended up drinking 5 liters of water today. Sheesh! Anyway- I got Ellie a mirror for her crib when I was at Target yesterday. It also stands up on its own. I put Ellie on the floor and let her play with it today - she seemed interested in the baby in the mirror. She kept grabbing at the mirror, like she was trying to get hold of the hand she saw. I don't know what was really going on in her head, but she seemed to like the toy and interact with it.
Ellie was in a better mood today, but still not her smiling, chipper self. I tried to take some pictures of her in a pretty dress, but she wasn't interested. Not one smile to be had. Here's a summary of the photo session...

I don't want my picture taken, Mommy.

Will you smile for Mommy, Ellie?

This is all I can muster for a smile - take it or leave it!

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Two Months Today!

Eliana is two months old today! It wasn't the best of days for her, though. She had her two month checkup today and that meant her first shots. =( She didn't like them at all and has been pretty fussy this afternoon and evening as a result. Poor thing. She cried the saddest cry I have ever heard from her when they gave her the shots. =( It made me sad, but I know that it's better in the long run for her to have the vaccinations. And she won't remember the shots when she's older. But it's still no fun.

On the plus side, Ellie got to spend some time with Grammee and Grandad over the weekend.

Ellie also got to show off her cooing and happy shrieks to Mommom and Poppy. She was so cute making noises into the phone.

At two months old, Ellie is now 9 lbs 6 oz, 22 1/4 inches, with a 15 inch head circumference. She's in the 50th percentile for length, 25th for weight and head circumference. She's a little one! But she's developing wonderfully and is healthy. The doctor said she's "just perfect".

Sunday, September 17, 2006

There's snow on the hills!

I love living in Montana. I got up this morning, went out on the deck, and these were the views to the north and southeast. I love that we live in a valley with mountains on all sides, especially this time of year. The air has cooled down and it definitely feels like fall. Now that we've got snow on the hills, it LOOKS like fall, too! The trees are just starting to change, but soon the cottonwoods will be beautiful orange and yellow. I can't wait!

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Don't Play With Your Food!

How many times have we been told that? But nooo... we still play with food. Perhaps this is why we're told not to. This is what happens when you drop 4 mentos into Diet Coke and 4 mentos into Diet Sam's Choice Cola. As you can see, the Diet Coke (on the left) is superior. Thank you, Mythbusters and for introducing us to this fun passtime.

ps - everyone should go to and watch the featured video if you haven't already. It's amazingly serious fun with Mentos and Diet Coke. But watch our video first or you won't be impressed with it. =)

Friday, September 15, 2006

ten and a half

That's how many hours Eliana slept last night. It's the second night in a row she's gone that long. Wonderful! It's great to have that extra time in the evening to get stuff done or spend time with Leif (or just go to bed early!) without having one more feeding to stay up for.

Yesterday we had a lot of fun at the farm. I had no idea it was there! We will definitely be going back - it's a u-pick farm with good prices. Last night we had corn on the cob for dinner - and I picked it myself! $2 for a dozen - not too bad. I also got some squash (acorn and butternut) to make baby food with. I'll make it (maybe today) and freeze it so Ellie will have squash to eat in 4 months, when she starts on solids. Rocky Creek Farm isn't certified organic, but he doesn't use any pesticides or herbicides, so I feel good about that. And since we're getting the produce in season it's better quality than the stuff that gets shipped across the country to the grocery store. It's funny how I'm much more concerned about the food Eliana will be eating than I am about what I eat. We're shelling out for organic milk for me to drink as long as I'm nursing Ellie so that she doesn't consume the added growth hormones . It does mean that I have to drink 1% instead of skim, but it's not too bad. I was sort of afraid it would taste funny. I tried soy milk once and it was gross. Same for the rice dream stuff. Ick. But this is good.

Well, hopefully Fall is here. I've been waiting for it and we're supposed to get snow tonight. Yippee! Our first frost was on Sept 1st but we haven't had any snow yet. My birthday is next week and there's often snow on the ground for it. I thought it was weird the first year (being from Texas and all...) but now I like it and hope the weather cooperates! I'm ready for Fall!!!

Well, I've got an hour until my little one wakes up, so I'm off to get some things done!

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Feels Like Fall

Happy Faces!

Yesterday Ellie was a happy girl and so cute! I finally got her on video making her cute noises and happy faces. Love this girl!

Last night I was away from Ellie for the longest I've been away from her so far - 3 hours. I went to a scrapbooking class from 6-8:30. Everything went very smoothly and Ellie slept for Daddy the whole time. We haven't given her a bottle yet, so I wasn't sure how that was going to work out if she awoke early. But, not to worry - everything was great! I had a lot of fun at the class, met new people, got a feel for how the classes are taught, and came home with a couple of mostly-finished pages - just need to add photos!

Today Ellie and I are off to the farm! We're joining a moms group for some fall activities - hay ride, pumpkin picking, and cider making at a local farm. I'm really hoping I can get some great pictures - I love this time of year!

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

8 weeks

I've been a mom for 8 weeks now. Huh. The newness is wearing off and the dailiness is setting in. Our routines are becoming more routine and we're doing well. There seems to be a direct correlation between the amount of work that I get done in a day and the whether I go back to bed after Eliana's first feeding or not. I didn't go back to bed after feeding Ellie yesterday or today (though I miss those early morning snuggles with my baby!) and I've just been on a roll for two days getting stuff done around the house. Laundry, cleaning, organizing (and not even my normal dump-everything-out-to-organize-it-and-end-up-with-a-bigger-mess kind of organizing!). I think it helps that we're adjusting Ellie's schedule and putting her to bed earlier at night, so we get to bed earlier, too. She's still sleeping about 8 hours a night, which is wonderful. Eliana smiles and coos with me daily, which is absolutely wonderful. I've heard that a smile can brighten a room - Ellie's smiles warm my heart and brighten my days - it's the prettiest thing I've ever seen. Here are a few pictures of my little (sleeping) beauty.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006


I had a grumpy baby today. I don't know what was going on, but she was fussy and not napping well. Maybe she's going through a growth spurt, maybe she's not feeling well, or maybe she's just not adjusting well to her schedule changing. I don't know. But surprisingly, even with a grumpy baby, I got stuff done today and that feels good. I...

  • Made the bed (it doesn't happen every day, so it goes on the accomplishments list)
  • Worked on cleaning the craft room
  • Cleaned up the giant scrapbooking mess I left on the dining room table after craft night last night
  • Made dinner (Enchiladas, salsa and homemade chips, spanish rice)
  • Cleaned up the kitchen
  • Emptied the dishwasher, filled and ran it, then emptied it again and put the dinner dishes in
  • Made a cute card (I can't seem to clean the craft room without getting a little distracted)
  • Watched the season premier of MARTHA
  • Cleaned up the living room
  • Put away laundry
  • Threw a load of laundry into the dryer
  • Went for a walk
  • Read to Eliana
So... while a day like this would have been normal before I had Ellie, they're few and far between these days. It feels good to get things done.

Now Leif is home and just got done playing with Eliana after dinner, so we're off to watch an episode of "Mythbusters" and spend some time together. And I don't have things hanging over my head. The kitchen is clean, the sink is shiny, and once our daughter quits crying and goes to sleep we will have a nice, quiet evening.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

She Speaks!

Okay, so it's not really "talking" per se, but it is fun to have these little "conversations" with Ellie now that she's cooing. They happen a couple times each day are so cute. Got a little bit on video, so I thought I'd share!

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Baby News!

Not us!! It's a little too soon for that... Eliana's not even two months old yet. But our friends Dave and Dana are expecting #4 (wow!). Congratulations!!

that's life

It is both good and strange to be at the same stage in life as our friends. Sam, Catherine, and their 8 month old son Tjabe came over for dinner tonight. Normally, when we'd get together with Sam and Catherine, we'd have dinner, talk, and play cards or a game until late. Tonight we had dinner, played with the babies, toured the basement, and it was all over around 8:30 - Tjabe's bedtime. It's just kind of strange how quickly things change. And yet, it's really good to be at the same station in life as our friends. We see what Ellie will be doing in a few months, they reminisce about when their kids were that small, we share stories, tips on cloth diapering and homemade baby food, and we share a little conversation about non-baby related things. But mostly we rejoice with eachother about the children God has given us. Funny, though. Last summer we were on vacation in Alaska with Sam and Catherine. Now we talk about diapers and drool and part company before it's even 9pm. Yep, things have changed. Life tends to revolve around naps and bedtime. Catherine asked tonight what my days were like. Essentially, my answer was, "Ellie wakes up from naps at 7,10,1,4,7, and 10. I feed her, we play, and she naps again." Leif half-jokingly commented that at first I had Ellie on a schedule, and now she's got me on one. And it's the same story with so many of our friends here in Bozeman. Kids, naps, diapers, walks, drool, smiles, and bedtime. That's life.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006


There's a forest fire not too far from here (Nye, MT), so we've got a bunch of smoke in the air. Visibility here is horrible - can't see the mountains, can't even see down the road to the interstate. It's pretty bad. So bad, in fact, that the Department of Environmental Quality is giving Bozeman a very unhealthy rating. So Ellie and I are in lockdown, staying indoors, and keeping the windows shut. It's gross out there.

Monday, September 04, 2006


We've known since before Eliana was born that she'd be stubborn, and she is. She gets so determined to do something and tries and tries and tries. She gets pretty frustrated, but in the end she usually does whatever it is she was trying to do. In this case, it was grab hold of "Mr. Crab" the rattle. The original video was 6 minutes long, so I edited it down for the blog, but she focused on this silly rattle for 6 minutes straight. Does she finally get it? You'll have to watch and see. ;)

Sunday, September 03, 2006

A Day at the Lake

We don't often get to spend time relaxing by the water where we live, so we decided to head to Wade Lake over the long weekend. Wade Lake is a couple hours away in the Madison Valley, and a place neither of us had been before. It's supposedly very beautiful and we figured it would be a nice drive over there. The further we drove, though, the more I questioned the beauty of said lake. We passed Hebgen and Quake lakes and dropped down into the Madison Valley - the mountains were beautiful, but the land was rugged, dusty, and sagebrush covered. This is what we were driving deeper and deeper into, looking for an oasis...

We got off the highway and turned onto a dirt road signed "<--- Cliff and Wade Lakes". The dirt road was long, windy, and definitely off the beaten path. There were free range cattle in the road, and ranch access only turnoffs, but nothing that looked like it might be home to a refreshing lake. I was starting to expect to find a muddy hole when we finally got there.

About six miles down the dirt road at the breakneck speed of 20 mph, we drove over a ridge and were suddenly in a beautiful forested valley with two clear blue lakes. It was breathtaking, especially after the drive to get there. The water was clear blue and green and looked almost tropical, here in the middle of the desert. It really was an oasis after all!

We spent a few hours at Wade Lake. We didn't do much, but spent some time relaxing. Next time we go we will bring the kayaks. This is a great place to do some tooling around. Cliff and Wade Lakes are no-wake, so perfect for canoeing or kayaking.

We played with Eliana, took some family pictures, and relaxed by the water.

Eliana sure enjoyed soaking up the rays. =) I know the hat an sunglasses are for her to wear NEXT summer, but I couldn't resist! This picture's for you, Angie! Hee hee. What a cutie!

On our way back to the highway we passed a cluster of decrepit old building, including this cool old school house.

So here's what I don't understand... We've lived here for 3 years and have never heard of Wade Lake until a week ago. Yet there were TONS of people at the lakes, and a good many of them from out of state. You CANNOT just stumble across this place - it is well out of the way. So how do these people know? Why didn't WE know? AND - what are the chances that we'd run into someone we know at an out of the way lake like Wade? Well, we did - ran into Erik Rassi there. What a strange, strange world. Nice place, though. Come visit us sometime and we'll take you there.

Friday, September 01, 2006

Clumsy Lovers Concert

We went to see the Clumsy Lovers in concert last night up at Big Sky. This was the last of the Music in the Mountains concert series and a band Leif listens to regularly. They're described as having a bluegrass/celtic/folk sound, but they're really a little bit of everything. We enjoyed the concert, but the air was a little cooler than we appreciated, so we left early. You know it's getting colder out when the Mike&Ikes you're eating go from chewy to crunchy... We had Ellie all bundled and snuggled up inside my coat and she was sleeping soundly, toasty as a can be. I was not so warm and comfy and made the very bad mistake of wearing sandals. Oops! It was fun evening out, if a chilly one. Oh - and Eliana got to wear her jeans for the first time! =) I don't know why, but baby jeans are just cute. Here are some pictures for you...

The pavilion and concert

It's a bird! It's a plane! It's... Super Ellie!

Smooches from Daddy

Smiles and snuggles with Mommy

And a random flock of birds that flew into the valley at sunset.