Sunday, January 31, 2010

Go away snow!

Okay, it was my third day stuck at home. I am ready for this snow to melt and for spring to come to Tennessee. Cabin fever has hit the Niemeyer Nest! Evie napped really well this morning but has been up since 11:20. It's been one long afternoon plus Carl was gone until 4. He had to go into the office for a bit and then he was sweet enough to pick up a few essentials from the grocery store. Of course, he got a few exras too but that's part of the fun with a snow day. Evie loved her mini Chessman cookies that her Daddy got for her.

I worked on a few crafts this afternoon, hung some pictures with Carl, made some chocolate covered Ritz with peanut butter and created a new drink - the Niemocha. Look out Starbuck's here I come! I was trying to make some snowcream for Evie and noticed that we were out of vanilla. That's another subtle reminder of how life has changed since Evie. So, I looked around for a substitute and came across some white mocha hot chocolate mix. I put some of that, a little sugar, some snow, a bit of a milk and a splash of coffee in a glass. It was better than a frappachino - well close anyway.

Carl wonders if I am building a shrine with all the pictures of Evie around here. It could not possibly escape anyones attention that she is our first child. We have pictures of her everywhere, a blog dedicated to her life and a baby book. Not sure how I will pull this off with our next child. Check out my handsome hubby using his level to get my shrine - I mean gallery wall perfect!

Using the webcam distracted Evie for a bit, she enjoyed seeing her Nana and Ipop on the webcam along with her Uncle Ben! She kept trying to leap through the screen to them. If it was possible to get her back - I'd lend her to them for a few hours. That would make everyone happy!

It's so much work to take Evie outside in this weather so I came across an idea last night - bring the snow to Evie! She thought it was really cool to play snow in the kitchen. I loaded up a bucket with snow and handed her a bowl with a big spoon. She had a blast and I was able to have a few minutes peace. I have a feeling snow in the house will be an activity around here for a few more days. Although, I am hoping to get out of the house tomorrow. Carl is going out of town for a few days so it will help me and Evie to see some other faces besides our own.

Evie's First Video

We downloaded, uploaded whatever you call it all of our videos last weekend. It's not hard to get them on Blogger but it's hard to find the file on our computer. We do not like Vista. Maybe we will get the hang of it soon so all of our family and friends plus our new blogging friends can see Evie in action! It's taking a really LONG down to upload the video to my post. I have spent 15 minutes watching it upload and now process. There has to be a faster way to do this! Does anyone have any tips? Hope you enjoy our first video.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

She's a part-time party time girl!

Another day at home in the snow! Evie woke up around 5 and went back to sleep until 8. That was so nice for us to sleep in a little. Her morning nap lasted until 12:30. We were trying to wake her up and she was not interested at all. Our neighbor's had planned a 40th birthday party and due to the snow they had no guests who could make it. We were thrilled to get out of the house and Evie LOVES to go to parties. They had it catered and it was fabulous. Lots of yummy stuff: wrapped asparagus, baked brie, beef sandwiches, shrimp and grits! Evie devoured the little cakes with a chocolate 40. It was nice to meet all the neighbors. We met a 6 month old baby named Julia Claire and Evie is Evelyn Claire. There was a big girl there named Claire too! Kids were running all over the place so excited about the snow. You should see all the winter gear people have around here - fleets of sleds, gloves galore, ski pants etc. Evie's favorite part of the party was getting to see Jack and Lucy. They were jumping all over us and Evie was just barking away at them. She is so cute with her little doggie sounds. It was a fun afternoon. We look forward to getting together with all of the neighbors again soon.

Carl is loving the snow. He was out shoveling the walkway. Not sure who he was expecting. Carl started a trend and our neighbor shoveled his walkway too. Our neighbors were surprised we even had a snow shovel since we moved here from North Carolina. We have about 6 inches or so of snow. It's going to be awhile before it all melts. Evie has kept us busy today. She thinks the boxes of floors are her own personal playground. We had chicken pot pie for dinner. Easy and delicious! She did not have an afternoon nap so she went to bed a little early. Let's hope that we do have another early morning wake-up call!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Lots of Snow!

Evie and I have been home all day enjoying the beautiful snow, It's been falling since about 10 this morning. We stayed in our pj's and drank hot chocolate. Well, maybe Evie did not have any hot chocolate. We built towers with her blocks, shopped for groceries with her cart, crawled up the stairs, made cornbread and had a picnic on the boxes of wood floors. Evie is just the sweetest baby.

Carl finally made it home after an hour and half drive in the snow. It usually takes him about 20 minutes so that tells you how bad the weather is here. We were so glad to see him. Evie was napping but she was happy when she woke up.

We dressed Evie up in all of her warm clothes and took her out for a little bit. She likes the snow as long as you hold her. It was so cute to see her squealing, waving her arms in the air and smiling so big. Her little face crumples when you put her down in the cold stuff. Evie does not like having cold, wet feet. Can't say I blame her. She's our little snow baby. I remember taking her out in the snow last winter when she was a tiny baby. Evie took a little nap in her snowsuit under a bush. Of course, it was a super short nap before I took her inside. Evie did not nap this time but enjoyed seeing our neighbors sledding and jumping on their trampoline in the snow.

I made potato soup for dinner tonight. Recipe is courtesy of Urban Farmwife and it was fabulous! Thanks Allison - you are right it is as close as you can get to restaurant style potato soup. We will definitely have it again soon. It's the perfect dinner for a cold, snowy night. Well, gotta run . . . we renewed our subscription to Netflix and it's time for our movie. Stay warm and enjoy the snow if it is has made it to your neck of the woods.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Did you get your milk?

Evie was so happy to see her friends at Kindermusik this morning! She was so happy to see George that she planted a big,juicy kiss on his sweet little cheek. Apparently, she goes for younger men because George is a whole 5 months younger than Evie. Kissing was not enough for her so she decided to insert her finger inside his mouth. At least it was not her tongue! George's mom is super laid back so she was not too worried. Evie was so impressed with Ms. Marie's puppet. It was a lamb. Maybe I could brave the cold attic to find my puppets from when I taught first grade. I am sure Evie would love to play with them!

Evie is starting to use objects more and more like we do. She was brushing her hair this morning with my brush and I noticed her putting a shirt on that she found in the laundryroom. We got a really nice surprise in the mail today from the Hortons. They sent Evie some pj's and the most beautiful dress that I have ever seen! I cannot wait to see her in it. We had a little fashion show this afternoon and Evie looks precious in the dress. I am sure you will be seeing this dress in a lot of pictures this summer.

Evie woke up from her nap and we went to get the new floors with Daddy. Carl has loaded and unloaded those floors 6 times now. We are going to LOVE these floors! Chad is supposed to install them next Thursday. I put another picture of the kitchen so you could get a better look at the color. It looks so nice! I really like it. We have had a yellow kitchen in our last two houses so it was a little bit of a stretch for us to go with a neutral.

We hit the grocery store to stock up on supplies in case of snow. It's a 100% chance here so we will see what happens. Evie needed some milk and I needed some cookies. Carl needed some almonds. We are ready to hibernate for a few days.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Baby girl is all grown up . . .

Evie is not a baby anymore. She even looks like a big girl. Here are few things that she is up to these days. She loves to burrow into small spaces like behind the trashcan or ottoman. Climbing is one of her new discoveries. She even hoists her sweet little legs to get into the tub or her toy basket. Evie is talking more and we can understand some of her language. She says go, bye-bye, Mama, Dada and touchdown with the appropriate motions. I just love to hear her voice but once the novelty wears off it may get a little tiring. We loved having the house to ourselves this morning for the first time in over two weeks. It was so nice to take our time getting ready this morning without having to prepare for service providers.

I had to wake Evie up from her morning nap because she was still sleeping at 11. She must have been tired! We played and organized some things around the house. I was changing the shower curtain and put the acorn shower rings on the ground - the acorn shape is not my taste. Evie must not have liked them either because she promptly dumped them into the toilet. I am sure that will not be the last thing that goes in there. We might need some toilet locks since she is fascinated by them.

Evie decided that she would rather play during naptime. She had all kinds of games going on in her crib and was happy as a lark. It was so funny to watch her on the monitor. After 1.5 hours of playtime, I went to get her. She was so happy to see me. I love how she pats my back when she gets picked up out of the crib. Evie is really good for our self-esteem! Everything we do is wonderful to her but that will surely change.

We went to run a few errands this afternoon. Evie loves being out and about. We came home to play. She was pushing her grocery cart all over the place. Apparently, it's really fun to push the cart in and out of the folding doors. She has been lining her Chick-fil-A sauces up in the kitchen again. Be sure to watch the State of the Union address - whether you agree with the politics or not - it's important to be an informed citizen. I would not trade my dream job to be President. Would you?

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Evie and I headed to the libary for storytime and to escape the paint fumes at our house. We were a few minutes late because Evie lost her sock between the car and the story room. Thank goodness, we found it since it was approximately 33 degrees outside. Evie loved the story and seeing all the big kids. She played at the train table until another kid coughed on her. We relocated to a cozy nook for our own storytime. Evie was so sweet. She sat on my lap and listened to a few stories. Then she just sat back and took everything in. It was so nice to hold my little girl for so long! We received all kinds of feedback. Someone even told me that Evie was laid-back. That's a new one. We just kept sitting there and Evie watched a little girl who was reading nearby. Evie laughed to get her attention and that started a little impromptu playdate right in the library. Madeline was her name and she was three. She was so cute and wanted Evie to laugh for her. Madeline kept saying "laugh" to Evie and would get so excited when Evie laughed. Madeline said, "her loves me" about a 100 times. I struck up a conversation with Madeline's mom and found out she was a former teacher. She supervises student teachers now a few hours per week. What a perfect job!

Evie came home to clap for Atillo. Apparently, she approves of his work. He did a fabulous job and there are no drip marks. I noticed that Atillo does not keep a papertowel in hand to wipe up his mistakes. Not sure he makes mistakes! We really like the color. It is Macadamia by Sherwin Williams. My sister in law used this in her house and I thought it would be nice in our kitchen. Paint sure changes the look of a room. Evie woke up from her nap ready to play! She used her new smock from her friend, Paisley. Isn't it precious? Evie spent at least 20 minutes taking extra Chick-fil-A sauces out of a bag and lining them up on the boxes of hardwood floors in our kitchen. She thought it was a really fun game. It looks like we can play it for at least another week because our new floors will not be in until Thursday and then they have to sit in our house for a week.

Something funny happened in the grocery store yesterday. We were walking down an aisle and Evie wanted to capture a lady's attention so she let out a little shriek. The lady jumped and screamed in surprise. The lady was pretty annoyed with Evie so I tried to address the situation. Remember I am dealing with a one year old but I did remind Evie that it is not nice to shriek at people. Another lady overheard this and told Evie that it was fine to shriek. She thought Evie was cute. Then the lady who was annoyed told the other lady that Evie had a really loud voice! It was so funny! Shrieking is just Evie's way of saying hello.

Evie gets more fun every day! I love being with Evie and watching her explore her little world. She is my little Lewis and Clark!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Fun Day with Friends!

Evie and I had such a fun day! We met Maura and Abby at Barnes and Noble to see Clifford the Big Red Dog. Evie loved hearing the story and thought Clifford was interesting. Maura had never been to the Puffy Muffin so we headed there for lunch. YUMMY! We had to wait awhile for our table. Evie enjoyed herself so much. She ate chicken casserole and a roll. Her favorite was jello salad. She must have remembered that from when her Nana took her to the Puffy Muffin. Abby and Evie had fun looking at each other. They checked out each others toys and had a grand time. We headed to the mall after our LONG lunch. Evie needed some pj's and I found a dress for the fall for $6! Carl thought it was a shirt for me since it's so big. I cannot believe Evie will fit in it this year. Thanks for a super fun day, Maura and Abby! Can't believe that I did not snap any pictures of the girls together.

It was a good day to be out of the house since Atillo had to sand some more and he was painting the trim with oil based paint. It was so so dusty and smelly in our house.

We came home to a freshly painted ceiling and trim. I totally underestimated how much time it would take to paint the kitchen. It's been almost two years since I painted. It's so comical that I thought that I could paint the kitchen myself and take care of Evie.

Evie and I were so overwhelmed with the fumes in the house so we left again to go to Publix. Candice called us with some exciting news! Her little boy made his arrival into the world last night at 10:00. He made his entrance several weeks early but everyone is happy and healthy. I am so happy for her and Carl. They will be such fun parents for Curtis. Evie and Curtis will be 1 year and 8 days apart.

Carl was convinced that I should not cook dinner tonight since the house is covered in dust and fumes. He did not have to work to hard to change my mind. HA! He ate my leftovers from lunch and some soup. I had doritos and a chocolate chip cookie - so healthy. We will be glad to get back in our kitchen.

Evie went right to sleep since she missed her afternoon nap. I learned today that Evie is not quite as dependent on sleeping as I thought she was. Evie had a few catnaps this afternoon and she was fine and we were able to enjoy a fun day with friends.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Whole Bunch of Nothing!

We had a wonderful lazy day at home. Evie slept until almost 8! I made muffins for breakfast. Evie loves muffins. After her nap, Evie went running with her Daddy. I mopped the foyer and the kitchen for the fourth time since the dust explosion. It makes me cringe to see Evie crawling across the dusty floor.

We hung out at home and Evie went down for her nap. I went to the mall and Target. Carl wanted to try the new Pepsi Throwback made with sugar. Pepsi is not my favorite but it was pretty good. Coke is probably about to unveil a similar product.

I have done a lot of organizing today and preparing for the painter. Each week, our "junk drawer" needs organizing because it fills at an alarming rate. All of those things that I am not sure where to put them. I prefer the illusion of clean and neat so stray items are swept into the drawer throughout the day. Carl and I are still noticing that little things take five times longer now than they used to before Evie. I spend way too much time looking for things! Guess what I found in my junk drawer - electrical tape. We could have only made one trip to Home Depot yesterday instead of two!

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Evie's first Haircut!

Evie was up a few times last night which is pretty unusual. We are so tired! I think her tummy was hurting -maybe from the pizza! She did sleep late this morning which helped us a lot. Let's hope last night was a fluke.

This morning, we had to take some things by Carl's office and then go to Home Depot. Our plan was to find some lighting for our kitchen but it did not work out. We even went to the big Home Depot that has a lot more of a selection. Carl took down the box light and needed some electrical tape. So, we loaded up again and headed to our local Home Depot. Never would I have imagined spending so much time in Home Depot. If you are counting that makes two trips to Home Depot in one day; it's our new favorite weekend hangout.

After Evie's nap, we went to order our new floors. It seemed like a good idea to choose what our contractor is comfortable using so 3/4 inch it is. Hardwood floors come in about as many varieties as there are people who want them. Anything, will look better than the our 25 year old floor with tears and holes. Evie has destroyed our rug that we were using to camo our floor.

Evie's hair has been out of control for a few weeks but being a traditionalist I waited for her to turn 1. I was pretty sure that Evie was not going to be a happy camper but we were prepared to capture her first haircut on film.We decided to go to Snip-its. They have a great business plan that caters to kids with tv's, prize boxes, toys, parent chairs etc. Evie was not impressed with the bells and whistles. She was not happy to put it mildly. Ashley cut her hair super fast and then she was fine. Evie looks so cute with her new do! Ashley gave her a little rubber duck for a reward. Not sure she deserved a reward! Doesn't she look so sad?

Evie is getting more confident with her walking. She is going back and forth between the ottoman and the table. It's so funny to watch her reach her hand out really far and lunge for the nearest piece of furniture. We clap for her and she seems so proud of herself. It is amazing how our love grows for Evie each day.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Kitchen Update!

Well, our cabinets are back in place and everything is back inside them. Chad and Kurt finished putting up the new crown molding and ripped up our shoe moulding. We are in conversation about our floors with the floor company and the contractor. Floor guy Larry says that we have the best product and the difference is some people like Chevy's and some people like Ford's. Contractor Chad says 3/4 inch is better. Larry says we can return what we have and buy the 3/4 which is cheaper. Chad needs a new gun to install our floor so Larry might just put it in. Have I totally lost you? Believe me, we are as lost as last years Easter eggs ourselves! Now, we know why people pay builders BIG money to take care of all this for them. Money does not grow on trees especially in single income families. We chose to save money by sub-contracting but it's a lot of decisions every day. It will all work out and all floors look the same once they are down. Can you see the difference yet? We still have a few more projects to do but are slowing making our way down the list! We have a lady who is supposed to paint our cabinets but she is in Malibu working on an NFL players house. She saved this job for the winter to escape the cold but it's rained the whole time she's been there. Sometimes, I wonder about the lines these people use. We have made a lot of progress in the last two weeks. Maybe we will get it all finished before we move again. HA! In the grand scheme of things - this is not a big deal - there are people dying in Haiti who would love to have a kitchen - any kitchen! Now, that's something to think about!

Sweet Evie!

We had such a fun day together! Evie helped me organize a little. She is really good at playing with piles of stuff - things like magazine, tupperware, clothes. You get the picture! I just love these pictures of her organzing the laundry. She does this every morning. Maybe we can work on sorting darks and lights soon. Be sure to notice the shirt around her neck. Carl came home for lunch which was a real treat! I think Evie was surprised to see him.

Evie is having a blast in her tunnel and she is obsessed with books. I LOVE IT! She picks up books and reads throughout the day. It's so cute to see her turn the pages with her sweet little fingers. I am having the best time with Evie and feel so fortunate to have the opportunity to be at home with her each day. She is changing so quickly and I do not want to miss a thing!

We went to the new Kroger this afternoon. It was such a nice store and way cheaper than Publix. I have been looking for ways to save money at the grocery store. Coupons are obvious but I finally figured out stockpiling with coupons! Now, I am not one of those compulsive stock-pilers but now that I have a HUGE pantry it seems more practical. Each week, bloggers post their groceries and how much they save. It has never made sense to me because I always wondered what type of meals they were making with the items they purchased. FINALLY, I figured it out that they buy ahead and shop from their own pantry. Harris Teeter had chicken Buy One, Get Two Free recently so I bought the maximum allowed of 6. So, that's 18 pieces of chicken - about 9 meals for us. Now, I just have to get things to go with the chicken. So, we are having chicken fajitas, chicken pot pie and baked chicken which meant we needed some produce. It's a good thing we like chicken around here!

Carl brought a pizza home - thanks honey! Evie tried some. Usually, she just has the crusts but the pediatrician said to give her whatever we are eating. I think she liked it! She also had strawberries and peas. Dessert was yogurt - the last YoBaby! My friend Kristin suggested that I buy a large container of vanilla yogurt and mix in frozen fruit. Much cheaper and way less sugar than YoBaby. Can't wait to see what Evie thinks about her new yogurt.

Carl read books to Evie while I cleaned up a little. It feels so nice to have our kitchen back in working order - at least for a few days!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Shorts in January!

Atillo came back to sand today! Goodness, it is a messy process. I knew it would be but it is different to experience it. Monday, he will be back to sand some more and then paint. Our floors will be put in at some point. We will be glad to get our kitchen back! It's so funny to me that we bought a house that needs so much work in the kitchen. Carl and I made a list of features we wanted in a new house and I am quite sure that an updated kitchen was at the top of the list. It will be updated all right but we are the ones updating it!

Evie had Kindermusik this morning. We started a new unit, Cock A Doodle Moo and got our materials. Evie got a new instrument, CD and a really cool book. She loves her class so much. It's so fun to see her interacting with the kids and watching her explore new things. Ms. Marie put out a HUGE drum and Evie went right up to it to test it out with her friend Abigail. I need to take my camera because there are some really good photo opportunties there.

We came home for lunch! Atillo was still working. I kept Evie up because he was about to leave. After he left, I took Evie upstairs to get her ready for naptime. Someone was banging on the door - it was Atillo. His battery had died and he needed my car to jump him. Our house is a disaster from the dust even though he did clean up some. So I had to bring Evie out with me, she was already in her sleepsack and was looking at me quite confused. It was also raining! We got his car started and then we came back to try to nap. Evie spent some time settling back down while I mopped again. She finally went to sleep!

Carl was so excited to wear shorts in January. It was beautiful this afternoon but then it turned stormy. We had a huge storm complete with thunder and lightning. We had planned on going to Chile Burito for dinner since our kitchen is a disaster zone. We waited for the rain to subside and made a dash for it. Evie and I shared nachos. She thought it was really fun to open and close the container they came in.

Evie was so excited to get her tunnel today from Uncle Ben. He sent it for her birthday. She has been in and out of it all night long! It is a real hit! We even crawled through her tunnel. Daddy got stuck and it worried Evie. She was really happy when he got out! Tonight, was one of those nights when you wish you could freeze time. We are having a ball with Evie!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

12 Month Appointment!

Evie and I went to our first MOMS meeting this morning. Evie was very impressed with the snacks and the toys. She dug right into a cookie and loved playing with the big kids. Ms. Cheap was canceled due to a death in her family so it was just a social event.

Evie was exhausted from not napping this morning. We had her 12 month appointment this afternoon. Carl was super busy at work and could not make it. I called Carl to tell him that we were still waiting to see the doctor so he came by to surprise Evie. I think Evie was so glad that he made it. Mommy sure was happy since today was a 4 shot day! Evie loved the nurse and got right on her boat to get weighed. She weighs 20 pounds and 12 ounces and is 30 inches long. The nurse told me that Evie was in the 90th percentile for her weight but I knew that could not be right. I asked her to check that again. Mommy knows best because she was in the 25th percentile! Much better than being in the 90th percentile. Evie's in the 75th percentile for her height and the 50th for her head circumference. Evie did great at the appointment even though we were there almost two hours. Goldfish and light switches helped pass the time. We found out that our pediatrican lives in our neighborhood about two streets away from our house. That could really come in handy! Dr. E said that word spread fast that a pediatrican was moving in the neighborhood. He told us that the first night he moved in the neighborhood and was sitting down for dinner - the doorbell rang with a mom frantic about her child's fever. He told us not to hesitate to call if he have a problem.

Evie was so happy to come home to play. She loves to play chase around the chair. It's so cute to hear her giggle and squeal with glee. Evie tried chicken stir-fry for dinner and thought it was really delicious. Mandarin oranges are still her favorite dessert. She is still working hard on her walking. We have seen her take several steps so our life is about to get a lot more difficult!

Can you tell the difference in our kitchen? I can't and am still not sure what he did here this morning. Tomorrow, he will come sand the walls and on Friday we will get our cabinets back. It's been interesting going to get dishes from the dining room. Chad did not expect this to take so long but that's the way things usually happen. He must not live by the motto - underpromise and overdeliver like someone that I know very well!