Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Taylor's 9 month check up

Our littlest girl turned 9 months today (wow). We had a busy day of doctor's office and then getting pictures taken, but it turned out to be a fun time just me and my little ladies.

Overall, the doctor said that she looks great and it developing just fine. The only negative news was that she heard a heart murmur for the first time. We got a referral to get a chest x-ray and an EKG. Once we do that, we have to make an appointment with a cardiologist just to be on the safe side. We are hoping to get that all done within the next two weeks. She also has an ear infection, but we thought she might as she has been pulling on her ear for the past month!

She is still long and lean:

Weight: 17 pounds, 2 ounces

Height: 28 1/2"

Head Circumference: 17 1/2

More updates to come on the follow up doctor visits.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Playing in the snow

After getting about 9" of snow on Saturday, we decided that today was a perfect day to play outside. This is the first time that Ella has played in the snow and she seemed pretty excited.

All geared up ready to go outside. She wore her fleece pants, two shirts, snow pants, socks and boots, winter coat, her hat, her hood and snow mittens.

Ella and Papa on their way to the back of our house where there is a big open field.

Papa pulling Ella on the new sled:

Mama warm inside since Baby Taylor picked the perfect time to nap:

After a crash down the hill (and a face full of snow), Ella was back inside for hot chocolate and cookies.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Happy Birthday to a special person

With all the presents, Ella's number one question was "Who's birthday is it?" Luckily for us, this was an easy answer and was accompanied by a beautiful rendition of "Happy Birthday".

Christmas 2009

Merry Christmas everyone! We were lucky enough to celebrate Christmas with lots of our family on both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. On Christmas Eve we went to Oma and Opa's house and then on to Uncle John and Aunt Deb. Christmas morning was spent with just the four of us and then after nap we headed to the Digangi house for more food and festivities. This was the first time that the great aunts and uncles on the Clinger side were able to meet Taylor. She certainly was in a great mood and enjoyed being passed around without much hesitation at all.

The girls were very good this year so Santa was kind to them. Ella got the Ariel doll and a book as she requested when we visited Santa while Taylor got a ride-on princess toy. The rest of the family was also very generous to our girls, thank you so much. It looks like Toys R Us relocated to our living room!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Cowgirl fun

Ella and Taylor got a cowboy hat and hankercheif from Ellie's 3rd birthday party. Ella also made a pretend horse to ride around the house on. Ella played dress up with it for quite a while and we were able to snap a picture of Taylor wearing the hat as well.

Just a bit easier

Taylor has been holding her bottle for a while now, but only while laying down. Now that she can sit up on her own while holding it, things are a bit easier for us.

Monday, December 14, 2009

The Backyardigans

The Backyardigans was the first cartoon that Ella would sit and watch for more than three minutes. After dinner we went to the basement to watch some TV and play before bed. I put Taylor on the floor and she stopped everything to sit and watch along side her big sister.

Santa Claus 2009

We ventured out to Spring Hill mall on Sunday after nap time to visit Santa. We waited in line for an hour, but both girls were incredibly well behaved that entire time. Ella told me that she was going to tell Santa Claus that she wanted an Ariel doll and that she was going to sit on his lap and take a picture. Low and behold, she followed through for us without any fright. She told him what she wanted and sat on his lap like such a good girl. Taylor was slightly frightened by a little tickle and some clapping cheered her right up.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

X-mas tree 2009

While we were up in Wisconsin for Emily's first birthday, Papa put up the x-mas tree. When we got home we decided to try and put the lights on it and hang some ornaments. Ella really got involved with hanging ornaments, but didn't quite understand the concept of spreading them around.

Emily's first birthday

We headed up to Wisconsin on Sunday morning to celebrate Emily's first birthday. Papa stayed back to work on some stuff around the house, so it was just Mama, Ella and Taylor. Luckily we left the house in the morning during Taylor's nap time so she slept almost the entire ride up there while Ella watched a movie. We had a great time playing with new toys, seeing friends and wishing a Emily a very happy birthday in person. Once all of the guests had left, we stayed behind for another 30 minutes so that we could catch up and the girls could play a little more. I headed out when both girls were tired, so both slept for about an hour of the drive home. That left about 40 minutes left of the drive, but Taylor can now hold her own bottle, so it's much more manageable.
The best picture we could get of the four girls:
Ella and Ellie:

The birthday girl:

Thursday, December 3, 2009

The girls in concert

This is quite possibly my favorite video yet. Taylor watches Ella like she is the greatest thing on Earth and she pulled this new little trick out of her sleeve today... clapping along with us! Meanwhile Ella is trying to clap and snap in the video, but she definitely has a lot of practice left before she is able to successfully snap her fingers.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

8 months old

Happy 8 months to our little Taylor.

Papa took Taylor for a follow-up appt. with her pediatrician last week b/c of the flu and we wanted to make sure her ears were clear. Her ears looked great, so her crabbiness is due to her red bulging gums and those pesky teeth trying to come through. Everyone who holds Taylor is amazed at how light/tiny she feels so we were interested to see what the scales said. With her clothes and diaper on, she weighed 17 pounds. So she is probably hovering just over 16 pounds.
Each day is something new with her. She absolutely loves table food and anything that she can "gum" to eat. She is disliking baby food more and more and we finally have resorted to feeding her table food and sneaking in bites of baby food. We have also moved up to stage 3 baby food which has small pieces of food chunks in it instead of it all being so creamy. She loves pancakes, macaroni and cheese and lasagna off of my plate!
I stopped nursing this past month and we found a formula for Taylor to drink. We introduced a lactose-free formula to her slowly and now she is great at drinking it. Along with the introduction of formula came a better sleeping baby. She still does not sleep through the night (she has done it once), but she typically wakes only once a night which is a huge improvement.

Taylor is also standing on her own more and more for longer periods of time. She will get up and start playing and then suddenly be standing on her own just looking around. She has taken one tiny step to me but it was immediately followed by falling to me without moving her feet. At the rate she is going, we are guessing she will be walking by 9 months (though we wouldn't mind if she took her time).

Here are a few pictures of our growing baby....

Thanksgiving 2009

I can hardly believe that we already celebrated Thanksgiving this year. Time really does fly by even faster once there is a second child in the mix. We had a great time this year with family. First stop was Oma and Opa's house at 2 pm. We had a delicious meal and even Taylor really enjoyed Aunt Colette's mashed potatoes (my absolute favorite). Second stop was Carriann and Brian's house. We got there around 6:15 pm, just in time for our second meal and dessert. Ella went and played with Brianna and Morgan right away and Taylor enjoyed exploring a new place (and the attention she received from everyone there).
I've noticed that it is significantly harder to remember to take pictures lately, but we were able to capture a few worth posting.
Here is Uncle John playing with the girls in the kitchen.

Morgan, Ella and Brianna:

Attempts to get Morgan, Brianna, Ella and Taylor....not an easy task...

Taylor's first tooth

On November 20th, we spotted Taylor's first tooth. You could barely see it, but you could certainly feel the jagged edges that had poked through. She had some trouble sleeping for a few days and we had to turn to some motrin when you could easily tell that she was hurting. It feels like the tooth next to it is trying to break the gums too.

Here are the best pictures I could get today....

Monday, November 23, 2009

My little vball player

Since Ella and Papa love to play basketball together, I decided to start teaching her my sport :) I started by showing Ella how to swing her arms and she would just swing them up and down over and over again. She is getting better and figuring out when to swing her arms, and I am getting a little better at timing my throws too. She loves cheering for me also and loves to grab the little ball and ask me to play volleyball. I love it!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

T-bone is on the move

The newest Taylor nickname..."T-bone" (created by Papa) has already stuck in this house. Lately T has been pulling herself up on the furniture and walking while holding on to it. We are so proud of her and very cautious too because she certainly has no fear!

Here is a video we took over the weekend. We pulled out the walkers that Ella used when she was first learning to walk and Taylor went right for them. She is still a bit unsteady as the walkers we have move pretty fast, but she is willing to practice.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

My little sicky

After picking Taylor up from school on Friday afternoon, she was incredibly happy that night and Saturday during the day. She was fever free, playful and ate like a champ all day. Saturday in the middle of the night was a whole different story. She woke up just before midnight with a 102.1° fever and it was downhill from there. We took her to immediate care Sunday afternoon when she spiked a 102.6° fever and was absolutely miserable. She tested positive for a variant of influenza and the entire family was put on Tami-flu. Monday I stayed home with her and the medicine seemed to work wonders. She was back to a happy and playful girl again.

Here are a few pictures from our day off.

The reason we had children

Aside from having someone to take care of us when we are older, J and I made the decision to have kids because we figured it was constant entertainment. Starting way back when we first taught Ella to call Polly "Dumb Dog" and now when we teach her to sing along with songs that we like.

A few months ago Ella brought home a new saying from school. She will show us something and say "look at this" in a really cute face. Her friend Samantha does it too and we think that it's from "The Little Mermaid" but we'll never be positive since Ella answers any question we ask her in repeat. For example "Ella why did you spill your milk?", her answer is "because I spill my milk". Not very helpful.

She is also addicted to letters and spelling words. She will come over to us with her Hello Kitty notebook and ask me to spell words for her. The latest request was "Ellie" :)

Friday, November 13, 2009

My little blue eyes - Taylor update

I'm pretty sure it happened. I got a blue eyed baby :)

We got the call from school today that Taylor was running a 101° fever so we had to pick her up. 6 of the 8 kids in her class have had H1N1, so we are hoping she didn't catch that! Luckily she has been in really good spirits actually. She is still eating/drinking like a champ and trying to play with Ella (while Ella mostly ignores her :).

I am also a sucker for a baby with a pacifier in their mouth. I don't know what it is, but I think it's soooo stinkin cute. Here is Taylor with a pacifier that says "Drama Queen" that she got from Nina. She doesn't keep it in her mouth long, but she does enjoy falling asleep with one in her mouth once in a while.

She has been getting better at sleeping lately too. Of course she still has her "off" nights, but she typically goes down at 8 pm and then wakes between midnight and 2 am to eat and then goes back to sleep until I wake her at 7 am. There have been a few times this past week that she thought it was playtime at 1 am, but we are working on reminding her that it's not time to wake up and play just yet.

Monday, November 9, 2009

David and Sydney's bday party

Saturday evening was a birthday party for the Hemminger kids. Sydney turned 4 years old and David turned 2 years old. The party was at "The Little Gym" in Hoffman Estates. We had never been there before and Ella had a great time. Jenna Coalson was also there and Ella always enjoys playing with her. They had bubbles that didn't pop when you caught them, uneven bars, balance beams and a jumpy track.

Ella requested that I put her hair in "kitty cat tails" which is what she calls pig tails. I braided them b/c her hair is getting pretty long now and she was really excited at how pretty her hair looked. Taylor also had a good time climbing all over the mats and watching Ella move all over the place.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Ella's first day of gymnastics

After seeing how much fun Ella had at Samantha's bday party a few weeks ago, we decided to sign her up for classes. Lucky for us, Spring Hill Gymnastics just moved their facility and they are now located just behind The Goddard School. So every Saturday at 9 am for the next 8 weeks will be at Ella's gymnastics class for 3 -4 year olds.
When we first got there, one of the teachers took Ella over to the rest of the class inside the gymnasium and she walked away from us without getting scared or anything! We were so proud of her. For 45 minutes, we got to sit back and watch the teachers lead all the kids on the tumble track, the balance beam, the rings and the bar. Ella had a great time and we are looking forward to her learning to listen and follow instructions in a new environment (and burn off some of that three year old energy).

Saturday, November 7, 2009

October artwork

Here is some of Ella's artwork from October 2009 and the last of her artwork from the Get Set room as she has officially transitioned to the Preschool I room.