Wednesday, May 19, 2010

All About Ella and Cameron

Not only have I been a slacker about blogging lately, but when I have blogged it's been about projects, home, etc...  So this post is strictly about Ella and Cameron.  They are both growing up so fast and have changed so much since I last posted updates about them.

Ella is 2 1/2 now and thinks she can do anything (I wouldn't usually discourage this kind of thinking, but it really hinders us throughout the day sometimes).  She has mastered the art of taking off her clothes (oh joy!), which is one of her favorite things to do and when willing can put all her clothing back on except for that shirt (she still needs mom for that :).  She has some serious spunk and attitude, which although it drives me crazy, I secretly love it (no wimpy, passive girls in this house).  She has become very interested in watching me cook, which thrills me to no end, but again, it makes my job just that much more difficult when I'm constantly telling her to not touch the hot stove or I'm tripping over the chair that she drags from counter to counter watching every move I make (it makes me smile just thinking about it).  She is an absolute daddy's girl, but knows that mommy is the one to go to when comfort is needed from a bad dream, a skinned knee or she is just scared.  She is such a little mommy - she loves her baby dolls and likes to teach them everything that Cameron is learning (i.e. she teaches them how to crawl up and down stairs, holds their hands to walk, gives them bites of her food, and yes she even nurses them sometimes).  She is very concerned that she shares her blankies with them at night so they don't get cold and they even get their own cradle next to her bed at night.  We've recently put Ella into a twin size bed and it seems to be going okay, although we have the occasional nights when she still wants to sleep in the toddler bed.  One of these days we'll go and pick out bedding for her new "big girl" bed.

Ella has also started saying some very funny things.  About half the time she calls me "Shanade" especially if she's trying to get my attention (funny how they learn so young).  She went through a phase where she would ask if you liked something and when you said yes she would always ask "do you?" in this drawn out voice; it was hilarious.  She loves to talk on the phone, especially with grandma or Aunt Caitlin.  When she was talking to grandma the other day she was rattling on about everything we were doing at home and when she was finished she said, "so anyways".  She always has us laughing with whatever phrase she has recently picked up.  She is such a smart little girl too.  It always amazes me how smart such a little person can be.  I love it.  She loves to read and has some of her favorite books such as "Giraffe and a Half", "Where the Wild Things Are" and "Were Going on a Bear Hunt" memorized word for word.  She has quite the imagination as well.  She likes to tell me that she's going on a bear hunt and she'll be safe, which is good cause I worry. :)

She also loves her nursery class and friends at church.  She is always talking about her "friends" and on Sundays she is so anxious to go to nursery.  Church doesn't start until 11:00, so from the time she wakes up till then she is constantly asking if it's time to go yet.  She loves to sing and has learned lots of songs in nursery as well.  She has even started making up her own words for the songs, again with the creative juices.  It makes me proud.  Ella is a great big sister and adores Cameron.  She is always trying to help and teach him, which of course usually does just the opposite, but she tries so hard.  We love our little Ella Bella and are so proud of her and the big girl she's becoming.

Now on to Mr. Handsome.  My baby is growing up.  He has completely lost his baby looks and is starting to look like such a little boy.  He has really started to look like a mini Andrew - I think it's so cute.  He has become quite the little champ on the stairs going up and down, which is good because it really makes me nervous to watch him come down from the landing to that first step.  He has also started standing up on his own and has started taking several steps.  He'll try walking on his own and he usually gets about 4-5 steps into it and then crashes, but has managed to get in a few more steps before.  Last week he really wasn't that interested at all, but just today it seemed like he was always on his feet trying to walk from the couch to a toy or to Ella or I.  He is also such a little boy.  He loves anything with wheels on it and he loves balls.  We had to go and buy him his own green ball last week because "someone" was a little possessive of their pink ball and really didn't want to share.  That's okay though, what house couldn't use a few more balls from Wal-Mart.  Cameron has also started to say a few words. His favorite of course is Mama, which is usually all I hear from him throughout the day, and on occasion he'll say Ella, Dada and ball.

Cameron is also following in his sisters footsteps and has become quite the champion eater.  I was worried about this because for the first several months he hated food and was quite picky about anything that went near his mouth.  Now of course you can't feed him fast enough.  He certainly has a sweet tooth that we've got to watch out for, but he loves most fruits and veggies (although he likes them better pureed than whole) and he loves meat.  Kinda weird how much this kid loves meat.  We've also started him on the whole milk, which he just guzzles of course.  This had made weaning him from the nursing so much easier.  In fact I think we're just about done nursing.  When I tried to feed him before bed tonight he didn't want anything to do with that and instead just tried to bite me.  I can take a hint and I'm okay with that.

Cameron has also started sleeping so good at night.  Oh sweet merciful heavens, this kid has finally started letting me sleep at night.  About a month and half ago I had had enough when he started waking up 2-3 times a night again and so I let him cry for a few nights in a row and it worked miracles.  Now he sleeps from 8:00 to 7:30 ish.  It has made such a difference in his personality.  He is so much happier and less cranky during the day.  I love it.  He is happier, but he has quite the stubborn and determined personality.  Holy Schmoly is this kid stubborn!  He is really good with the fit throwing as well.  I know I know, he's not even a full year yet and he's throwing a fit.  I don't know what it is about that second child and having such a stubborn personality, but gosh dang it this kid is going to give me a run for my money.  None the less, I'm still in love with this little guy.

Anyways, so that is what's up with Ella and Cameron.  We are gearing up for summer and are looking forward to playing on our new grass.  Both kids are itching to get outside and really don't like be locked up in the house when it's warm.  We're also getting ready for Cameron's first birthday.  Not really sure what we're doing just yet, but I'm sure we'll think of something.

Poor girl... she crawled into our bed one night and ended up rolling off the bed and smacked the corner of the nightstand before hitting the floor

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Our New Yard - Before and After

Our yard is finally "finished".  Enough to show pictures at least.  Really the landscaper's work is done and now our job begins.  Since we laid new sod we've got to wait a couple of weeks before we can walk on it, so all of the planting that we have yet to do will have to wait until next weekend, but here are some pictures in the meantime.

Before Pics:

During Pics:
Andrew took the wall down so that we could make this planter smaller.
Working so hard while I just take pictures.
I'm so glad we didn't try to transplant these ourselves.

After Pics:
The grass has started to fill in really well and all those brown spots are looking so much better.

This back corner will be where we plant our raspberry patch and we're planting blackberries is the raised planter bed.
I really like my new Japanese maple garden
I'm going to plant some hydrangeas in that far planter.
Kinda weird how just certain areas burn.  These too are turning green now.
I know this planter still looks huge, but it is so much smaller than what it was.  Now I'm wondering what to put in it.  Any suggestions?  I'm hoping to fill it this weekend.  It looks pretty bad and it's really standing out especially since our house and the previous owners were sort of "that house" in our neighborhood.  You know the kind.  The yard always looks perfect, they spend every waking moment in the yard and all the neighbors strive for their roses to look as good.  Yeah, that's not us.  But, I still think we need something nice and I do like to have nice curb appeal.  I just don't want something that requires as much attention as my children.  I have a few ideas floating around, but I would love to hear your suggestions as well.