Grace and Hope

Grace and Hope
Wait for God. Wait with hope. Hope now; hope always! Pslam 131:3

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Easter and Much, Much More!

            Is it possible that it keeps getting better and better? Now, at 18 months the girls are able to do so much more and we love being out and about. This month we went strawberry picking at a farm, went to the Houston Zoo, have daily trips to the park, and had lots of fun at Easter time. There are so many pictures to share with you this month from all our fun. Enjoy!

          Aubrey and Avery have me smiling and laughing from the minute they wake up to the minute they go to bed. My first time that I see them in the morning is still my favorite time of the day. I peek my nose in quietly and Aubrey spots me because her crib is positioned in clear view of the door. She looks at me-smiles, giggles, then plays shy. She looks up again and lets out more giggles and squeals and it is the sweetest welcome you could imagine. I poke my nose around the dresser and sleepy Avery slowly raises her head and a smile stretches from ear to ear. While she is much slower to wake up, before I know it she is standing in her crib with arms outstretched waiting for a big morning hug. In the last 18 months, I have only slept in once, because this morning time together is just too special to miss!  

In the mornings, the girls nearly dress themselves, pretty soon they will be able to put socks and shoes on too. We then venture downstairs for breakfast. The girls now prefer food that they can feed themselves which means I need to be on the ball with always having eggs, pancakes, waffles, french toast, or something of the like ready for them. On days that I didn’t have enough time, they are plenty happy with cheerios/Crispex and fruit. We then have a morning play window. The girls just love being outside and so we spend many mornings playing in the back yard, going to the park (they love the swings and going down on the slide on their tummies), going on wagon rides, going on neighborhood walks, playing ball, or simply chasing around the back yard. We have tried doing sidewalk chalk, but the girls still have a tendency to eat it…so we will stick to bubbles for now! Right now we are also working on sign language (they love “please”), colors, shapes, and letters of the alphabet. And of course, we do lots and lots of book reading. Both girls will point to things in the book when asked....teaching them has been really fun and rewarding. Aubrey really enjoys books with flaps--sometimes so much so that she rips them out of the books!

The girls are still great sleepers. We have a longer morning nap because that is when they sleep best. They sleep anywhere from 2.5-3.5 hours in the morning. This allows mommy to exercise and do everything else that needs to get done in the day during this long nap window. We then wake up for lunch, play time, and then have a short 1hr nap in the afternoon. Many days we have play dates either morning, mid-afternoon or late afternoon to get us out and about.  

We love dinner time because that means daddy comes home and joins the fun. The girls are normally eating when he comes home and their faces light up.  We get them giggling and laughing like they are having the times of their life. The girls also enjoy eating out with us. They are very good at restaurants and are getting so much better at not leaving a huge mess below their high chairs every time! The evening times are my other favorite time of the day. It is a time when all four of us are together and the girls are hyped up with excitement. We laugh, we tickle, we roll around, we do everything that a toddler would love to do. It is our special family time that we get together and there is nothing more special than that. We then do pj’s, brush teeth, night time prayers, hugs and kisses then bed. It is such a sweet ending to the night. Every night I thank God for giving us another day with these special girls. We know that tomorrow is never promised and we are so thankful for TODAY.

Aubrey has always been our social butterfly but Avery truly is becoming more verbal this month. She generally wants to start all her new words with the “daa or drrr” sound but she is trying to communicate with us so much more. Both girls are starting with the "ca" sound for the car and cup, but haven't quite gotten that out yet. Avery is very close to saying "shoe" and Aubrey says "ball" (in addition to their basic words of momma, dadda, and dog). Both girls are using sign langauge a lot more which has really been a neat way to communicate with us. They sign for when they want more food, more milk, milk or water with a meal, all done, and lots of lots of "please" when there is any type of food around that they are interested in!!

Avery had me cracking me up the other day. Aubrey loves, loves, loves our dog Gnocchi. She not only loves to pull on her hair, but she loves to feed her snacks. She literally will break off pieces of her snacks and feed them to the dog. She gets giddy when the dog eats from her hand. Avery likes Gnocchi but surely does not have the affection for sharing her food with her. Avery often times will walk around holding onto a cracker or piece of bread because for some reason she likes to save it. Gnocchi just goes right up beside her and eats it from her hand because in Gnocchi’s mind, it is a treat that she is waving around. Gnocchi gently grabs the food from Avery’s hand and every time, Avery throws her arms up and down and chases her (walking) around the room and she throws out all the baby words she knows at Gnocchi. It seriously is a riot watching her. I can only imagine the things she tries to say to Gnocchi.

The girls are starting to “dance” (I use that term loosely!). Avery is a little more limber and will get her whole body involved. Aubrey pretty much just bee-bops with her head. When mom gets into it they laugh and laugh and laugh…I guess I really do look that funny! Things they love this month are the “sit and spin” toy where they can sit on the seat and turn around until they get dizzy. Aubrey loves this toy and she actually can make it about 180 degrees all on her own (otherwise she loves for us to twirl her around until mom or dad gets dizzy!). Avery only loves it because she sees that Aubrey loves it, but in actuality she gets sea-sick pretty quick. They are loving airplane rides on my legs (with lots of turbulence of course). We have been doing this since they were itty bitty, but all of a sudden, they get so excited they start drooling because they are having so much fun! They also love our ball pit. Literally, almost every night they ask to go into the ball pit. They are enjoying reading from books and Avery loves to sit in daddy's lap for story time. They both love playing with water, but we can't seem to keep Avery away from it! She loves to find our drain spout in the back yard  and splash in the water....I'm looking forward to pool season.

I just started a new hobby of sewing/embroidery. I'm just a beginner, but I have made the girls taggie blankets, an alphabet blanket, and dresses.It was definitely a learning experience, but they all turned out fairly decent. I included some pictures of my handiwork!

More to come next month with visits from both sets of grandparents, uncles and much fun:)

Avery: Sister, I got this, I have seen mom and dad do this a million times.
Aubrey: Get me out of here!

Their first car--don't say momma never got them anything!
My sweet little thumb sucker.
Pretty lil' girls. Yes, Avery is that much taller than Aubrey (although they both weigh 20lbs)
Momma and her big girl.
Momma and her baby.
Making kissy noises.
What a gem.
First self-fed spoon feeding (mashed potatoes). Avery is such a ham!
First self-fed spoon feeding (mashed potatoes).
Enough said!

Houston Zoo

Ready for our first day at the zoo (enjoy the hair bows in a picture on both the girls--it only lasted 3 minutes!)

Aubrey crawling through a fish tank tunnel.

Avery crawling through a fish tank tunnel.

Avery looking at the giraffes.

Aubrey checking out the giraffe exhibit

Strawberry Picking At Froberg's Farm

I love this picture where Aubrey's mouth is stuffed full with strawberries and she is going after more!
Aubrey's mouth, once again, is exploding with strawberries!

Mommy teaching Avery how to pick the strawberries.

I have a strawberry to share with you!

Easter and Egg Hunts 

Daddy with his baby girl.
I love, love, love this picture! The girls are blessed by the best daddy.

My attempt at mommy and Avery picture!
Aubrey and mommy on Easter.

One of my all time favorite pictures!
I not only love her joyful smile in this picture, but those big full cheeks...yes, on my Avery!
Easter baskets 2013
Easter breakfast before church. Kolaches and bunny ears of course!
This picture amazed me because Avery looks too "old" to be on this baby toy! My oh my, when did she grow up so fast?!

So darling.
Aubrey is filled with joy from her toes to her ears!

Do you notice the trend that Avery is often found escaping with two baskets...such a big sister!?!

Sewing Projects 

Back of taggie blankets for the girls.
Front of taggie blankets.
ABC quilt
I couldn't figure out how to turn this picture, but you get the idea.

Daddy, I love you!


P.S. We got this delivered to the house and the girls LOVE it, but we have no idea who to thank for it!! If anyone was the gracious giver, let us know so we can thank you!!!