Friday, September 26, 2008

Syd and Cole

Earlier this week I watched Cole for a couple hours so Kristin could go to an appointment and run a few errands. The kids did great-they play together really well and I was actually able to get a few things done when they were playing upstairs in Sydney's room.

Playing in Sydney's room-which I realized I haven't posted pictures of her new big girl room. I will do that soon, it's so cute!

And the reason why Jakey and the future little brothers need to hurry up and grow. Poor Cole, he just doesn't have enough boys to hang out with and he is forced to do girly things. Like wear Minnie Mouse ears
And play with dolls.
Sorry little man-although it was his choice.

And tonight Sydney and I watched a gymnastics special on tv because the girl is addicted to all things gymnastics these days. Sydney loved watching the Olympic athletes on the parallel bars, rings and balance beam and told me, "I did that in gymnastics today!"
Here's Sydney dancing around to the floor routine, wearing her favorite dress. Greg and Jessica bought this for her in Cancun and oh my-Sydney wants to wear this dress every day. In fact last week she did wear it nearly all week. We've even had a tantrum or two over this dress. I asked her if she loved the dress, or loved the fact that Greg and Jessica bought it for her. She told me, "I love dress, but I really love Gweg and Jess-e-ca."

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Syd's three year pictures

Today I took Sydney to Kiddie Kandids for her three year pictures. Boy, what a difference from last year when she was so shy and I couldn't be more than an inch away from her for her photos. We've talked about it the past couple of days, and she's been practicing her smile. All the pictures turned out really well and it was difficult to choose the ones we liked because they were all good!

She loved the fact that these pictures will be Christmas presents for her grandparents, uncles, aunt and godparents so I think she smiled extra big for them. Wait, should I really post them since they are gifts? Okay, I will. They're even better in person anyway.

We also have some close-ups and they created these really great collage photos for us too.

Wow, I can't believe how old Sydney looks in these! My little girl is growing up so fast. She keeps telling me she can't wait to turn 16 so she can drink coffee and drive a pink car. I told her I need her to stay my little girl forever. This feels like it was just a few months ago and really it was two years ago when she turned one...

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Happy Birthday Mom

Today would be my mom's 58th birthday.
Sydney and I ate chocolate today to celebrate my mom's passion for chocolate. Apparently this has been passed along because Sydney loves chocolate too.

I have to say the hardest part about losing my mom is that Sydney and her baby brother will never have the opportunity to meet and get to know their grandma. Well, kind of. You see, something extraordinary happened about six months ago, something that I still think of often and I am going to share, even though I have gone back and forth on sharing this.

I was telling Sydney about Grandma Wallene one night before bedtime and I asked Sydney if she had ever met her Grandma Wallene. She told me yes. I asked her where she met her and she said, "In my crib. She play toys with me. She read books to me and she called Papa on my blue Cinderella phone." Now this absolutely floored me-Sydney has no idea that my mom and dad were married, she only knows he is married to Nana. And that phone was in her crib for about a month or two. She went on to tell me she sings to her, and then she said, "I can't touch her though." I said, "You can't touch her?" She said no. So I said, "You mean you can see her, but you can't touch her?" Sydney replied with, "Yes, I can see her, I can't touch her."

Of course by this point I was attempting to hold back my tears. I thought it was amazing, but the skeptic in me doubted it..for just a second. I mean really? Is this possible? But how else could a 2 1/2 year old make this stuff up? There is no way. And yet that is something my mom would do. She always told me she would be my angel and she would send me signs she was still around. There was the hug I felt after I walked into our house after my mom passed away-my shirt was moving as if someone was giving me a hug. And then there were the cards-we had quite a few sympathy cards on top of our tv and they would all fall down-at the same time. Multiple times. It became comical and I would laugh and say, "Hi mom." My aunts were even over once when it happened. We knew it was her. I guess I just didn't realize she was still around us after twelve years.

And then yesterday we were driving home and I told Sydney that Grandma Wallene's birthday was today and asked Sydney if she had met Grandma Wallene. She told me yes, in her crib. I asked if she sees her in her new big girl bed and she said no. I asked what her and Grandma Wallene did and she told me they played with toys in her crib and read stories. And then she said, "But I can't touch her." I asked her what Grandma Wallene was wearing and she told me a blue dress. My mom's favorite color is blue and she loved dressing up for work-heels and all. I can totally see this. And then Sydney told me Grandma Wallene kisses her goodnight.

So there you have it-my children will never really know their Grandma Wallene, but I feel pretty confident that Sydney has "met" her Grandma.

I'm sharing this because it's something that has meant so much to me during times when I am sad my mom isn't here to see her grandchildren. I can't even explain how proud and delighted she would be to have grandchildren. She would have adored Sydney so much.

I love the fact that I can look at Sydney and see my mom. They have some of the same facial expressions and the same happiness and joy with life. Sydney wakes up happy every single morning, and with exception to a tantrum every once in a while, the girl is happy 99.8% of the time. The little things in life delight her. I remember talking with my mom one day, probably a year before she passed away. She was telling me how lucky and blessed she was. She had a wonderful husband, two great kids, a job she enjoyed, terrific family and friends, and a house she loved. She told me she was so happy and she had everything she ever wanted-she said she was blessed. I remember looking at her in amazement. Here was a woman who had lost all her hair from the chemo, was in constant pain because her cancer had spread to her bones, and she was uncertain of how long she would have to live, knowing it wouldn't be more than a year or two. Yet she loved life and appreciated everything she had. She wasn't bitter she was dealt this cancer card, she was happy she was given everything in life she had ever wanted.

Happy Birthday to the most amazing woman I have ever met, and someone who I want to be just like. And someone who has passed down her love of life to my daughter. Thank you mom.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

"No, my friends!"

Today we met up for lunch and a little town center browsing with my friends, err Sydney's friends Heather and Carrie. Sydney has now adopted them as her own, and who could blame the kid? They spoiled her with awesome birthday gifts and Carrie even bought Sydney cocoa with whipped cream. Yup, the kid's got them wrapped around her little finger.

Go Huskies! Sydney checking out the Husky dog
Carrie, Sydney and Heather

Friday, September 19, 2008

Much better

Today was Sydney's gymnastics class with the "normal" class and it went much better. The kids are 3 and 4 so of course there was still some running around, but NOTHING like last week. I didn't go into much detail on the kids behavior last time, but not only were they running all over the place and not paying attention to the extreme, but they were disrespectful and talking back to the coach. Here are some of the things I heard coming from the wild boys..."Whatever" when asked to get in line. "I'm not doing that" "This is dumb" and just genuine rudeness. I don't expect the kids to behave perfectly and follow instructions to a T, but I do expect respect. That is what blew me away with the parents-they could have cared less. The dad next to me yawned so loudly more times than I could count, you know the loud yawn people do when they are bored? Yeah, he did that the WHOLE time. Big shocker his kid was one of the worst.

Today the kids did warm ups, hand stands, trampoline (they tried doing the splits in the air again), forward rolls, the rings, backward flips on the uneven bars, the balance beam and gosh, more stuff than I remember. Wow, I was impressed. What really impressed me about Sydney and the other kids is the coach would show the kids what to do, which was a series of five things, and they would remember them all and do it. I was amazed. Sydney did great and I am sooo glad we changed into this class. Night and day. The coach told me after class Sydney did really well and much better in this environment, and I agree.
Oh-on the way out we had to use the restroom while the "bad" class started. It was going for about five minutes and when we walked out of the restroom the coach was telling the kids they needed to not act all crazy today and to listen to her, follow instructions and not to run off. The class had only been going on for five minutes, yikes.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Ice skating

We took Sydney ice skating for the first time this weekend. Anthony and I have talked about taking Sydney since she started walking-we both ice skated as kids, he played ice hockey when he lived in Minnesota and Canada (I think it's a school requirement there eh?) and I took ice skating lessons for a couple years when I was eight.

It started out really well. She walked around a little bit with them before she stepped on the ice and they became a little familiar. Then Anthony took her around the rink and "pushed" her along. She thought this was pretty fun. She could stand on the ice by herself and was even able to take a few steps towards Anthony. Then the unthinkable happened-she fell on her bottom on the ice. Tragic. It all went downhill from there. She was NOT happy about the fall and cried for most of the time afterwards. Really I think she lost her confidence after that. She was not happy unless Anthony was holding her and skating around the rink. She loved that. Part of the problem is we skipped the nap to go skating and that was probably not a good choice. It was still a lot of fun and it was a great introduction to ice skating. She's been talking about it ever since and she is excited to go again.

And no-I didn't skate. I figure with me being 6 1/2 months prego, probably not the safest. I even googled it to double check. Apparently you can do quite a bit of damage if you fall and since I haven't skated for a while, I didn't feel comfortable. I have to say I can't wait to get out there again though-Anthony and I went a few times before we were married and I really do love ice skating.

Getting ready to show off her mad Kristy Yamaguchi skills

Putting on the skates

Look at me!
Papa and Nana even stopped by to cheer Sydney on
We decided to put on the helmet, eventually...after the six inch fall on the bottom.

And because I thought this would be fun...

Anthony playing hockey at age 11-ish
How cute is he? I think Sydney looks a lot like him here

And one of my classic "pictures of a picture." Nice quality huh? Anyway, this is me at 8 or 9. I was in an ice production of 'Alice in Wonderland' and if you couldn't tell, I was a flower.

Three year doctor appointment

Today we had Sydney's three year doctor appointment and it went very well. First off, Sydney's finally on the weight chart! She weighs 25 1/2 lbs, putting her at the 5th percentile. This was quite exciting, as she hasn't been on the charts since she was about 9 months old or so. She is 35 inches tall, and 10th percentile. So that means out of 100 kids, 95 weigh more than her and 90 are taller than her. I am seriously so excited she is on the charts though. She eats a lot more lately and just doesn't seem as tiny compared to other kids as she used to, so we figured she was on the charts.
The doctor also checked her motor skills and asked Sydney questions and she is right on track. Apparently they only need to know one color by age three...uh what? Yeah, so Sydney is definitely doing fine.
Sydney had to bring her Elmo doctor kit with us so after the nurse checked her heartbeat, took her blood pressure, etc., Sydney was practicing the same technique on me (checking heartbeat and blood pressure at same time.) It was pretty funny. Sydney told the doctor she wants to be a doctor when she grows up so I think the doctor might like her even a bit more now, haha.
It was a great appointment, and the next big doctor appointment will be the dentist...oh boy.

Friday, September 12, 2008


Today was Sydney's first official day of her new gymnastics class. We arrived early and watched the kids before us-same class just a different time. The kids all did so well and followed directions very nicely. Sydney kept asking, "Is it my turn yet?" She was so excited to get out on the floor. She did great with being by herself-I figured it was hit or miss and I may or may not be able to go up to the viewing room upstairs to watch her. She told me to go up there and just waved and blew kisses to me every now and then.

There were 5 kids in the class, mostly boys and one other girl. The boys were WILD. They didn't really pay attention, they kept running off to do other things and the problem with this is my child is a follower. If anyone else runs off, falls down, etc she is right there with them. She didn't do too badly but I have to say I was a bit frustrated watching this going on. The other parents of the boys didn't even seem to care. The prior two classes we attended went A LOT better.

After class I approached the teacher and asked her if the kids get better with paying attention over time in class and mentioned Sydney's pattern of following the other kids. I'm sure she could tell I was a little frustrated. The teacher told me the three boys are BFF and were in a class together this past year and they were crazy and a bit difficult to manage. She asked if we would consider the same class, different time. I said yes, the class before ours looked great. She made me feel better when she told me that if she were me, she'd put Sydney in a different class. She said Sydney is doing great, has tons of potential but this probably wasn't the best environment. So that made me feel better. I realize there are always going to be the rowdy kids and we need to work on the "not being a follower," but besides the fact that she just turned 3 five days ago and this is our first gymnastics class, I really don't want it to start off on a bad note and I want my child to learn as much as possible. week should be way better. Today wasn't bad but just wasn't quite like I envisioned. And yes, I do realize that my son will be one of those crazy boys running around like crazy. I know I have it good with Sydney so I am in for it... LOL.

My gymnast after class-who apparently forgot her beautiful smile....

Playdate at our place!

Yesterday we had a playdate at our house to celebrate one of the nice last days of summer. The weather's been great here-it was high 70's yesterday and it's supposed to reach 80 this weekend. Typical Indian summer in Seattle. We had Ari, Darren, Cole, Samantha and Jakey over, and it couldn't come soon enough for Sydney. We set up her pool in the morning and every 10 seconds she said, "Is it time to swim yet?" I would tell her that we had to wait for her friends, so she would run to the window and announce they were here so she could go swimming. (they really weren't.) Sydney's perfect playdate is the pool with her friends so she was in heaven. She spent pretty much every minute in the pool. The kids had a blast!
Jakey having fun in the sun
Jake and Ari
Big sis Samantha pushing Jake
Cole and Sydney

Sydney went back into the pool after her friends left before her nap. And then again after her nap. It was a bit chilly so daddy dumped some warm water into the pool. Her favorite thing to do is dunk the front of her head into the water-this is the typical after swim hairdo.

Maddy and Sydney

Traci and Maddy decided they needed to return to their big beautiful home in Chicago, oh and to Nate too. We met up with them for breakfast before they headed to the airport. It was fun getting the girls together one more time. They are so adorable together-Maddy was telling Sydney about her backpack, and Sydney was telling Maddy about her shoes. Sydney even held up her dress to show Maddy her Dora underwear. Oh boy.

Here are some pictures of the kiddos:

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Sydney's birthday party!

On Sunday we celebrated Sydney's birthday with eleven of her friends at Pump It Up! All the kids had a blast, it was great. They were all off and running around, and there wasn't a bored kid in the house. Even the parents had a great time! After jumping and bouncing for a little over an hour, we went to the party room and enjoyed cupcakes and ice cream and opened gifts. Sydney had a blast, and has been telling us, "I thwee now!" along with, "Let's go play with all my new toys" ever since. The girl made out like a bandit-she scored in the Dora and really cool toy and book department. Nice work Sydney!

Here are the pictures...
A birthday mani and pedi from Mam-0 before the big event
My baby girl is 3!

So excited to be at Pump It Up!
Oh boy-besides the fact that my child spent all by five minutes on the slide, she jumped off after each slide and landed on her bottom on the mat below. My tailbone hurt just watching it, but apparently it didn't bother her a bit.
Kaden taking a minute to pose
Kay, dad, my cousin Scott and Anthony
Even Mam-o went down the slide...twice!

Sam and I Sydney with her Gweg and Jess-e-ca
Adorable little Maddy
My girl in hand holding heaven-holding Greg and Samantha's hands. Sydney LOVES to hold all her friend's hands.
The group!
Kaden, Sydney and Samantha
I just love it when Sydney puts her hands in her pockets, it cracks me up. Here she is with Jackson and cousin Jared.

Cutie pie Gracie
Sam and her mini me Alexis
Kaden asking Sydney what the 411 is on the cupcakes-where they at? Where they been? When they getting into my belly?
The cupcake cake!
"Sydney, let's get this party started. I need me some cupcakes-pronto!"-Kaden

Make a wish birthday girl!
The fam Pop-o and Sydney
Uncle Trevor and Sydney
Papa and Trev
All the kids took a turn in the cool chair
The birthday girl
The kids all lined up, waiting to watch their gift being opened.
I am sure I have mentioned Sydney's love affair with Blue Puppy-a toy Cole gave to Sydney because she played with it every time at Cole's house, and Cole wasn't that into him. Well Cole gave Sydney Green Bear-Blue Puppy's brother. Oh wowzers, Sydney is in love! She walks around with her two "buddies" as she calls them non-stop.
More Dora puts a smile on my kid's face!

Jessica with Cole and Sydney
We opened up more presents at home. Here's Sydney opening up a present from auntie Alisa. If you ask Sydney what her cards say, she reads it and says, "Happy Birthday dear Sydney."
We bought Sydney a Dora digital camera. Yes, it is possible that Dora merchandise hit an all time sales record after this birthday party.
Trying out the new birthday stuff!
Wrapping up the big day by playing a little Xbox with daddy. I think Sydney drove better at Project Gotham Racing than most adults-she's a natural! Must be the chef hat.

What a great day! We had a blast. It was fun seeing all her friends and getting all the kiddos together. Sydney's already talking about her next birthday...oh boy.