Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Two Months

Susie turned two months old yesterday!

It's impossible to fully describe what a sweet, happy girl she is.  She is just so precious and we love her so much.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016


We're in California for the next month. Surprise! All of Jason's clinical rotations for his PA program have been local to us in North Carolina, but he was able to arrange one with his old family doctor in California and so we're out here staying with our parents for five weeks. We're really happy for this opportunity to be able to spend so much time with family.

We flew out last Thursday, from Raleigh to San Francisco to Orange County. The girls did so good on the flights - especially Susie! She slept almost the whole time. My dad and my brother Banks picked us up from the airport.

Banks and his family just moved from China to California this summer. It's the first time he's lived in the US for like six or seven years (he's been living in Thailand and China) and the first time his wife and children have ever lived here. They've visited before, but this time it's long-term, and it's awesome.

So on Thursday we flew to CA, saw Nan (Banks's wife) and the kids at my dad's house, and then crashed at the Thomas's house. On Friday we settled more into the Thomas's house and then had dinner with my dad and Banks and his family at the mall and then all went to Barnes and Noble.

And then, on Saturday, we went to Legoland!

Our group consisted of me, Jason, our girls, my dad, Banks, Nan, and their kids. It was the first time any of us had gone. And it was really fun! It was so well designed for little kids.

Starting at the entrance at the bottom of the map and going around counter-clockwise, our path around the park on Saturday looked sort of like this:

Highlights of our day included the dragon rollercoaster (the first rollercoaster Ellie's ever been on - she loved it!), the "horsie ride," the "hidewaway" fort/playground, the pirate splash pad, the airplane ride, the firetruck ride, and the the "Duplo playtown."

All around the park they had statues made out of legos:

And play areas filled with big and little legos:

These play areas were strategically placed next to some of the lines, and they were super helpful. The one pictured above was next to the dragon roller coaster and Saya and Zelda played with the blocks while Ellie and Max went on the ride.

Ellie and the horsie ride:

Zelda and Grandpa waiting for the airplane ride:

This next picture is Ellie on the little go-kart ride. This ride was sooo funny to watch. Ellie could drive the little car pretty good - she pushed the pedal with her foot and steered around the track. Zelda and Max (and like four more little kids) on the other hand - the two ride operators were running around trying to help them push the pedals and move forward. It was really funny, and all the parents watching on the sidelines were cracking up.

The "duplo playtown" was where we finished off the day. It was a perfect playground for all the cousins, and I think they could have played there for hours more. In addition to all the play buildings and slides, it had a little train with a *super* short line that we went on a couple times. It was perfect.

Legoland was so fun, and we hope to be able to go there again before we go home to North Carolina. :)

Saturday, August 6, 2016


Funny things the girls said this month

"Orange foxes are scary. They look a little bit like dinosaurs." - Ellie

At bedtime.
Me: "Okay, I'm going to go get your toothbrushes."
Ellie: "Okay, we're going to hide in the closet."

Ellie had a little spot of ringworm on her leg. She said it was caused by "mushroom germs." (She knew that it was a fungus, and that mushrooms were a fungus too. Smart girl.)

Ellie, leaping off of the couch: "I'm trying to learn how to fly in the air without wings."

This one is from our nephew Ezra. I was talking to my sister Alyse one day on the phone, and overheard this conversation between them.
Ezra: "Oh no, my hot dog!"
Alyse: "Did you drop it?"
Ezra: "No, I ate it. I want it back."

We were all walking together. Zelda was wearing her yellow butterfly shirt.
Ellie: "Zelda is a pretty name for that one in the butterfly shirt. And did you pick the name Ellie for me?"

What we did in July

Overhead view of our garden

Jason had his emergency medicine rotation this month. His long, crazy hours plus the long commute meant that on the days that he worked, the girls usually only saw him in the morning *or* past their bedtime. He finished work at the emergency department on Friday though, and had his tests at school on Monday, and now has a break for the next week and a half!

Even with Jason's crazy work schedule, July was great. We all got lots of baby cuddles:

I'm going to admit that sometimes I just sit there and smell Susie's head. Because nothing beats baby smell.

Played at the splash pad:

This big bucket dumps water on all the kids every four or five minutes. Every time we go to the splash pad, Ellie spends the car ride there talking about how it's not going to splash her that time. And every time we go to the splash pad, she ends up sitting right underneath the biggest splash zone so she can get soaked.

Played at the park:

Played with lawn chairs:

Went to the Museum of Natural Sciences in Raleigh: 

We only have one picture from our visit! But it was really fun. My favorite part was the "discovery room" and I wish we could have spent more time in there (that one room closed earlier than the rest of the museum). The discovery room had all sorts of cool things to touch and explore and play with and read. In the rest of the museum we saw colorful tree frogs, snakes, fish, huge whale skeletons, and more. And the whole museum was free!

Went to the Russian festival:

When driving in town one day, I saw a sign for a "Russian Festival" at the art center that weekend. Jason went on his mission to Russia, so obviously we had to go. It was fun! We got to see Russian (and Georgian) dancing and listen to them play Russian music with traditional instruments, color matryoshka doll coloring pages, and watch little Russian puppet theatre shows. One thing that was fun was that like half of the people there were speaking to each other in Russian, and Jason got to listen to them and talk to some of them too. Ellie's matryoshka doll is above. I love it.

and played at the library:

Also, Ellie and Zelda are cool. Real cool.

At home we blew bubbles: 

 Watched the squirrel try to steal seeds from the bird feeder:

Hammed for the camera:

And enjoyed baby smiles! Susie's started to smile at us this week.

(And these last two pictures were taken this week, so, August, but I have to include them because I love them.)

Ellie was playing here in the pantry for like twenty minutes. In this picture, the can of Beanie Weenies was looking for its mother. It was asking each can one by one, "Are you my mother?" And the other cans would respond with something like, "No, I have corn inside." But don't fear - it did eventually find its whole family.
And this sweet little face looking up at me: