Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Swinging fun

So, I had bought this swing a while back, but I never checked to see if we had any good tree branches to hang it from until last week (after we got back from our CO trip). Gabi loves to come out here and swing...I even got the flower bed weeded the other day while she was in there--great!
Swinging fun!

Here's a picture of my brother, Ryan, and I enjoying a little swinging time when I was about the same age as what Gabrielle is now (check out how much Gabi's smile looks like mine!). Can you imagine that I was actually sitting on a wooden swing, not strapped in or anything? I think that Gabrielle still wiggles too much for me to trust her on a "real" swing yet.

Me and my pool

So last year I had gotten Gabrielle a little blow-up pool on clearance that we didn't actually end up using. I didn't feel totally comfortable with her sitting good enough in the water without me. we just blew it up and used it for the first time the other day. We've been having weather in the 90s and 100s for the last few weeks, so it's definitely warm enough.

She seemed to have a great time, although she didn't want to actually sit for very long, and in the end found out that on the other side of the pool was grass that she could pull up and stick in her mouth (yummy?). I think that we might have to make this a daily event since she likes it so well. And, I am probably going to have to take some of my friends up on letting us "bum" some pool time off them and their families!

Look at me in my pool!

Taste-testing the watering can.

Splish, splash!!!

Clap, clap...yeah, this is fun!

"Helping" mommy let out some of the water.

Memorial Day weekend

This is the best mommy-Gabi picture that we were able to get because she kept getting distracted by my necklace, the plant behind me, etc., etc. But, I still think it's adorable because she's actually looking at me!

A little family pose Sunday after church.

One of the funniest pictures that we have taken of Gabi. She was playing with her toys while we were watching "So You Think You Can Dance". All of a sudden she stopped in front of the TV and started doing her little dance moves too. When Nick took the picture, the guy on the screen was obviously being a little weird--may be that's what Gabi was checking out.

I think it's just hilarious!

Gabrielle sporting her red-white-and-blue spirit.

Is she not just so cute in those pigtails? I've been waiting to finally be able to buy some cute hair accessories to put in her hair. Yeah! :)

Backyard plants

This post is for my mom and dad who helped us with some yard work when they were down visiting us this past January...

This is the vine-bush thing that is in the southwest corner of our backyard (the same kind as the one that we cut down in our alley).
I just don't understand how such a weird plant can produce such pretty flowers!

This is the "grape-looking" stuff that I was telling you about on the phone. This is on the vine plant that is on the southeast side of our backyard wall. Interesting--I wonder if they are edible! :)

More exploring

Standing on top of her toy walker...
Um, not what I had envisioned her using it for!

Climbing in all by herself (minus one foot).

So, we thought the safest thing was to lower the walker and then pack it up. But, as usual, she surprised us and now likes to go over and sit in it like this. There are a couple of other toys she can reach from there, and it keeps her entertained for quite some time.

Crazy girl--never ceases to amaze me! :)

Gabrielle's obviously pretty proud of herself that she was able to climb up on the couch by herself for the first time last week.

More things to climb on--

I knew that this box from her birthday would come in handy at some point. It's just low enough that I don't worry about her falling off.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Our time at the Thaemert's house

So here we are at my sister, Katherine's, house near Hillrose, Colorado. As soon as we got there on Friday afternoon, Matthew was ready to play hard with Nick. You can't really see it very well, but Matthew is upside down, and Nick is ready to body-slam him onto the couch. I'm sure that Gabi doesn't quite know what to think or do...

Gabrielle got to open her belated birthday gift from the Thaemert family, and she got a very cute yellow shirt and an adorable pink sundress. I can't wait until they fit this summer!

Nick stealing some time with precious baby Samantha.
What a proud uncle he is!

Nothing like some family time in the evening playing "Singing Star" on their PS2. Girls against boys, and guess who won? I won't brag too much about our wonderful team...okay, so the girls won every challenge but one, but who's counting, right? :)

Gabrielle wanted to "play" with baby Samantha more than once over the weekend. I have been trying to get her to be gentle with her dolls when she plays, and I guess it payed off because she did a fairly good job for being her 1-year-old-self!

Matthew getting a little story time in with Grandma (my mom) before his nap on Saturday. I think that Gabi was a little jealous that it wasn't her sitting there getting read too. One of her favorite things to still do is to look at books or be read to.

I get the chance to "rest" with Samantha in my arms. I wasn't asleep, but was sure comfortable laying on the couch with her!

While Katherine's pantry doors were open Gabrielle took advantage, and out of everything that she could have pulled out, guess what she found? Cheerios--one of her favorite snacks. Too bad she didn't get any of the Honey-Nut flavor though...she's still eating (and enjoying) the plain-old regular kind.

Matthew gets to be the first one to try out his birthday gift from his parents--a new play set in their back yard that the guys constructed Saturday afternoon. Dan's dad (right) is helping to put on some of the finishing touches.

My mom taking the time to hold her new granddaughter.

So we celebrated Matthew's birthday Saturday night since all of the family was around for the weekend (even though his birthday isn't really until May 27th). I think he was trying to be a poster child for the song "It's my party, and I'll cry if I want to". Too precious...perhaps he just didn't want to sit through the length of the birthday song...?

Check out that smile underneath the pacifier. I was almost convinced that we had put her swing away too soon at our own house. But, I think that she was just trying it out, and wanted some attention for herself. Although she did want to get in the swing multiple times, and did stay calm for the few minutes she was in there. Oh, and by the way, check out the cute shoes that I found at Target that actually fit her thick feet (they are like Robeez, but half the price). Yeah! :)

We went outside for a while and played in the "baby" swing that was tied to a tree. Again, I think that we are going to have to find a spot at our house to put one of these for her because she had a blast!

They have a big dog (obviously about the same size as Gabi), and she wasn't intimidated at all. In fact, she was petting Holly nicely and things were going well until....

Holly decided that she was going to give Gabi some "lovin'". I am soooo glad that I caught that moment on camera. I'm glad that it still didn't seem to faze Gabi too much to have a large dog licking her face. How cute! :)

Just havin' some fun outside.

Grandpa's little girl (with my dad) enjoying his first granddaughter.

My mom stealing a little more time with Samantha...

The "Home Depot" kid's tool set that we gave Matthew for his birthday.

Hopefully now he won't take his dad's tools and try to play with them.

Yeah for birthdays...look at all my cool now toys, clothes, and books!

Grandma getting some Gabi time...looks like it's close to her bedtime! :)

Gabrielle sporting her shades after church on Sunday.

Samantha was dedicated during the service, so we had more to celebrate!

Three generations of "The Girls"!

Back at Dan and Katherine's house Gabrielle starts playing with the construction hat from Matthew's tool set.

Precious picture of Samantha looking at Katherine...

a little mother-daughter-time.

Gabrielle and I checking out the slide...

just to make sure it worked...and it was great! :)

Okay, so we had to try out the swing too...

And, we loved all of our playtime outside!

Matthew learning to share his tools with Gabrielle.

She did the "taste-test" on some of them for him.

The end of our cute that they were playing nicely together. We left for home on Monday with the intentions of stopping to stay the night in Amarillo again, but we drove all 12 hours on Monday, and were home to sleep in our own beds on Monday night. Thanks to everyone for such a great time and some fabulous new memories together!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Traveling to Colorado

So last weekend we took off after Nick got off work and started our trip up to see my sister, Katherine, and her family, including my new niece, Samantha. Thursday night we stopped for the night in Amarillo around 10pm. Then we did the rest of the driving on Friday. Here's some of the fun pictures from our trip.

We stopped at a park in Lamar, Colorado for a picnic lunch that I had packed from home. It was great weather, and we really enjoyed getting out of the car and stretching a little.

The girls enjoying some fresh strawberries.

Gabi trying to cram a whole one in there to "gum-up".

Keeping it in with her hand...don't want to lose any precious strawberries!

Gabi's first experience in an outdoor swing. I guess I should have been taking her to the park long before now. I guess I know now that she really loves it. And, perhaps I can talk Nick into hanging a swing at home from one of our trees or something too.

I got in on the fun too! :)

Nick and Gabi before they took the plunge down the slide.


Gabi trying it by herself...I'm not sure if she's ready for that yet. It was really fast, and she bumped her head a little on the slide while she was going down.

After we got back on the road we came to a one-lane road that made us sit and wait for a while in the construction zone. Obviously Nick was NOT impressed! :)

Gabrielle taking advantage of the time we were waiting in the construction zone to play a little peek-a-boo with her blanket.

Finally the dude turned the sign to "slow". I wonder how much he gets paid?

Gabi eating an afternoon snack with some milk...yummy!

Nick much happier too after we were out of the construction zone.

I think may be he just needed a snack too! :)