Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Help wanted

I am looking for a recipie on how to fix spare rib meat. I bought a package of beef as well as a package of pork, thinking that I would try something new. Unfortunately, I don't have a clue as to how I should fix them...crock pot, or grill? Someone please help me!!!

Teething fun...or not so fun.

Way back there you can see one of her molars popping through.

Unfortunately, she is still working on the molar on the bottom left side, as well as one of the bottom front teeth. Luckily, the two top molars came in without us knowing what was going on--surprise! :)

Monday, July 28, 2008

All in a week's fun!

Gabrielle loves to be like her daddy and "read" the paper. We tend to let her have the adds because they don't get black print all over her. Unfortunately, JCPenny's must have been having a bra sale the day this weekend--I definitely didn't notice that when we took the pictures! :)

A new fashion statement.

She's really been enjoying her slide lately, and this week started exploring the "tunnels" underneath.

I'm sure that everyone wanted to see a shot of my large rear-end, but if you could have heard Gabrielle's giggling, you would have enjoyed this as much as I did. Thanks for the fabulous picture, Nick!

Outdoor fun

Gabrielle LOVES to be outside. So, I have been trying better to take her out before her morning nap, or after her afternoon nap to avoid the Texas heat. She really enjoys walking down the street to our mailbox in the mornings, and we've been trying to get out in the pool or swing in the afternoons.

Her favorite toy in the pool is a sailboat that she can detach the sail from.

Blowing bubbles in the water like we practiced at swim lessons in June!

One of the first times she's laid down in the water by herself...

The hat was drenched after that--good thing she was in the shade!

Just relaxin'--she figured out that the side of the pool was like a pillow.

One of her other boats in her pool.

Playing with the water/sand contraption.

A nice ledge to set our toys out to dry, I guess.

Just havin' fun in the sun!

So, one night this week after supper we went outside for a little bit and used Gabrielle's bubble machine that she got for her birthday. She loved trying to "catch" the bubbles before they hit the ground. I think that Nick had just as much fun with the bubble maker. It's in the shape of a hippo, and has a name tag on the front: Boubly. Of course, Nick pronounces it "boob-ly". Nice, huh? :)

I think she was more interested in the bubble bottle after a while--great!

Here's a quick video of our bubble adventures.

Our lil' CORNhusker

So for the first time last Saturday night, we let Gabrielle try some corn-on-the-cob. At first she just stared at the corn and even put it up to her lips a couple of times before she realized that she had to bite off the corn. It was sooo cute watching her learn another new "trick".

Also, if you look at the pictures, she was using her Nebraska plate for supper that night...must have added a little extra good luck because she LOVED the corn on the cob! Who says that she can't be a Cornhusker too? I'm sure Grandpa and Grandma Reinke won't object!

What in the world is this?

Eating her corn in a backwards flute-holding position to start out.

No stopping her now that she understands what she's doing!

Do I look like I'm done yet?

I think there's still more corn I haven't gotten off this cob!

Is it possible to get corn off the handles?

Just a little video of her polishing off the delicious corn.

Monday, July 21, 2008

New accomplishments this week

I know that both of these videos are dark, but I hope you can get the main idea. I am just continue to be so amazed every day at the new things Gabrielle is learning to do. Currently, we are working on using a fork or spoon with our meal...sometimes she picks the food up with her fingers and puts it on the spoon, just so that it falls back off and she sticks the food in her mouth with her fingers. Wonderful!

The other day Gabrielle climbed up on the piano bench by herself, turned around, and started "playing". It was sooo cute. I was afraid that when she did this that she would pound hard on the keys, but she plays pretty nicely. Makes me smile every time she does it now! :)

We have had this slide in the livingroom for a while now, and up until this past weekend, she would only go down the slide if we were waiting at the bottom for her. Well, now she seems to think that she can do it well enough by herself, and since this video was taken, has also learned to go down on her stomach--feet first thankfully! I guess now that she is confident with it, we'll get it out in the backyard soon--may be we'll wait for these TX temperatures to cool down a bit too.

Just yesterday I found my little angel had climbed up next to the kitchen table and had put all of daddy's mail/newspapers on the floor. Fabulous new trick!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Not feeling well

Fabulous post, huh? Well, I've been feeling "under the weather" for about 2 weeks now. When we were finishing up our trip in Nebraska at my parent's house, I randomly threw up after breakfast, and then felt fine the rest of the day. I was tired, but thought it was from the trip. When we got home I took a pregnancy test, and it was negative...I've also taken a second one since then, and that one was negative too--bummer!

I have felt more and more tired during the day, achy all over my body, along with nausea and stomach cramps every time after I eat even the smallest amount of food (yet, I still get hungry, which is discouraging). And, I finally got the thermometer out last Thursday and noticed that I had over a 101 temperature (I thought I was just hot because we are living in TX, and it's summertime!).

I'm sooo thankful that Nick took the day off on Friday to watch Gabi while I got in a little extra rest. But, I don't seem to be feeling that much better, so it looks like I will need to find a doctor to go to on Monday morning. If any of you have any advice or suggestions, I am all ears (esp. my "medical" friends). And, I would appreciate your prayers...especially since I have played the "what if" game so many times in my head to figure out what's wrong with me.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Mommy and Gabi

Lately Gabrielle has been playing with the blanket off the couch (the one that I use to curl up under in the evenings). It's so cute seeing her play "Peek-A-Boo" with one of us, or even just by herself. She also thought it was neat that we made the blanket into a "fort" for both of us to hang out underneath.

Just hangin' with my mommy!

Daddy and Gabi

After we got home from our fun KS/NE vacation, there was some very unruly grass for Nick to mow here at home. It had been over two weeks since we had cut it since Nick had the flu before we left and didn't feel good enough to cut it then. Luckily our neighbors didn't turn us in to the city or anything! :) I think it took him close to 2 hours to get it done after work one evening (what usually takes closer to 45 min) since he had to bag it all.

Gabi wanting to be "just like her daddy".

I'm sure she was being a "big" helper! :)

One more try...her toy mower is definitely not this hard to operate!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

15-month check up

Gabrielle had a check up at the dr's office today. She weighs 24 pounds and is almost 31 inches tall. In both height and weight she is around the 75th percentile, so still a little bigger/taller than the average 15-month old.

We also found out that she has already cut her two upper molars in the top back and is getting super close to pushing out the bottom two molars. Who knew that those would come in before the other two bottom teeth in front? I wasn't even watching back there yet! Perhaps that's why she's not wanting to nap too badly this afternoon!?

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Nebraska videos

This is Gabrielle's "giggle" video. She loves to be outside, and we had a great time at my parent's house swinging, going for walks, and just exploring. The second video, below, is of her walking in the grass. Up until the last couple of weeks she wouldn't do it on her own--only holding my hand, and then she was still pretty apprehensive. Goes to show that practice makes perfect, I guess!

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

So much fun in Nebraska

We traveled up to Nebraska to see my family, and after a few "roadblocks" (had to get an oil change and we backtracked to Wichita from Newton after we forgot our hanging clothes at Nick's mom's house).

Gabi getting some lovin' from Grandma Reinke before bedtime.

Happy Fourth of July!!!
We had a great day playing at Grandpa and Grandma Reinke's house after a 2-mile walk early in the morning with my Aunt Marlys and my mom. It was such mild weather while we were there, so we took advantage of playing outside in between naps.

Gabi climbing into the chair that I sat in growing up!

After supper we headed out to swing--one of Gabrielle's favorite things to do. Check out the video clip above to hear Gabi giggling and thoroughly enjoying herself!

She loves to swing so high.

Mommy and Gabi swinging together.

Gabrielle inspecting one of Grandma's many flowers.

I love this picture because it appears that she is trying to smell the flower. But, I think that she was really trying to taste it. Who knows, perhaps it was nice and sweet!

Gabi trying to get over her grass-aversion by slowly working her way down the little slope back to the swings. Any time she felt like she was going to fall over, it seemed that she started crawling backwards. Otherwise, she actually walked in the grass by herself (something that she hadn't done much of until this week). Also, check out the video clip above for a little better viewing of her grass-walking.

Grandma and Gabi working their way back through the grass and up to the house.

Gabi doing a little more inspecting of Grandma's flower collection.

Mommy and Daddy planting big kisses on her cheeks...obviously she didn't enjoy getting them as much as we enjoyed giving them. I think that she was just wanting down--so many new things to explore in Grandma's backyard!!!

During the day we watched "National Treasure 2" finally...I know, Nick and I are SUPER behind on our movie watching. Hopefully someday when we live close to family again (for free babysitters) we'll be able to catch a few more than 5 flicks a year. Right now it's so expensive to get a babysitter and go out to see a movie. And, I know that we could rent, but I guess we just don't think about it as much because there's so many great reality shows on TV (just kidding).

Gabrielle working on climbing Grandma's stairs all by herself. Since they don't build basements in Texas, there's really no where for us to practice stairs safely. Fortunately the one step we have that goes into our living room must have been enough for her to "transfer" that knowledge on to the bigger task of a full set of stairs. Way to go Gabi!

In the afternoon we headed into the town of Byron to visit my grandparents. Gabrielle wasn't really digging the idea of sitting on my Grandpa's lap, and he was really disappointed by that (especially since I have always been his special "Sunshine" granddaughter). Hopefully she'll do better next time!

A couple of my cousins were also there for the day, so Gabrielle enjoyed trying to keep up with them. Taylor is also my Goddaughter (daughter to Diane and Stuart--my first cousin). For those of you who remember, she was also the flower girl in our wedding. Can you believe that she's going to be a 5th grader in school this fall? She really did enjoy playing with Gabi, and thought that it was so fun that Gabi would sit on her lap and look at pictures with her.

Taylor's brother, Dylan just being himself--silly!

Dylan spinning Gabrielle around in the rocking chair with my grandpa close at hand to make sure he wasn't being "too rowdy". What fun to see them play. Another fun fact--Diane was pregnant with Dylan at our wedding...how he's grown into ALL BOY since then too!!!

In the evening we attended a wedding of a friend/cousin/neighbor that I grew up with, Jessica Krenke. We did 4-H together, were managers for the basketball team, and if you can believe this, I also babysat her when I was in Jr. High. It was great to see her again, and it warmed my heart when she told me that every time she sees bubble-wrap packaging she thinks of me because I would bring it with me for some fun when I came over to babysit. Funny the things that people will remember!

My dad playing with Gabi at the reception. She enjoyed trying to reach the greenery-balls that were hanging from the ceiling. It really was beautiful, and the food was great too!

Andrew and Jessica Lara dancing their dance together. Unfortunately I didn't get to dance with Nick because it was REALLY late and Gabrielle needed to get home to bed. Perhaps the next wedding I'll get a chance to dance with my hubby.


Saying goodbye to Grandpa and Grandma after church and lunch so that we can head back to Wichita for the night. Thanks for a bunch of fun new memories!