Saturday, December 20, 2008

Snow, part II

Well, our piddly little snow from last week melted off on Wednesday. A new storm was supposed to come through that afternoon but we didn't see a flake the entire day. I woke up on Thursday to about 3 inches of new snow and it was still snowing. It kept snowing.... and snowing.... and snowing... and finally stopped in the evening, leaving us with at least 8 inches!

Isa looking outside at all the new white stuff

Out front in the morning

The patio table by afternoon....

I put out our snow attire for yet another round of fun. But Isa took a 4 1/2 hour nap (!!!) and by the time she woke up, it was almost dark. So, we just spent the day cozied up inside.

On Friday we decided not to head down to Olympia as planned (weekend fun with Zoo Lights and the Nutcracker wasn't going to happen!). However, I heard from my manager in Everett that roads up there were in pretty good shape and the freeways seemed okay as well. I thought it might be my best chance to get up there to pick up work materials since it could only be done on a weekday and another big storm is scheduled to come in tonight with as much at 10 more inches of snow (yikes).

My wonderful neighbors stayed with Isa so I wouldn't have to take her in the car. Getting out to the freeway was a treat. I don't think I made it above 15 mph the entire way. The freeway was pretty much bare and dry, but just crawling through downtown Seattle. I finally saw a sign that said "accident ahead" which accounted for the uber-slow movement. Imagine my surprise when I got to the accident scene and found it wasn't a spin-out as I expected, but this:

Seriously, it looked like something out of a movie scene, not real life. No one was hurt, thankfully but it was quite a sight to see 2 buses hanging over the freeway!

I made it to Everett and back to Seattle without any major problems (although the trip ended up taking about 3 times as long as normal). Unfortunately, I only made it halfway up the final hill to my house. I know, I know- I'm kicking myself for even trying it. I was able to slide my car back into the curb, so I'm not in the middle of the street and I'm only partially blocking someone's driveway. She said she had enough room to get out around me if necessary. But, we've gotten another 3-4 inches as of tonight with no end in sight, so I doubt she's going anywhere soon....

My sister's fiancee will be in Seattle on Monday for work- with his 4 wheel drive vehicle. So even if my car remains stuck, we'll be able to make it down to Olympia for Christmas. :)

Sunday, December 14, 2008

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

The house is finally decorated (or at least as decorated as it's going to get this year). Isa absolutely LOVES anything shiny or sparkly, so this is definitely her season. We got the tree Thursday night and I put it up after she went to bed. Friday morning I got up and turned the lights on before going to get her out of her crib. She was thrilled to see it- actually a bit too thrilled. I had to baracade it with a large trunk because she couldn't keep her hands off of it.

In addition to new, non-breakable Christmas ornaments on the tree (I used to do all cobalt glass, silver, crystal) there are several changes this year. I changed out the usual ornaments on the mantle swag. This year it has red, green, and gold ribbon (like the Ethiopian flag) and hanging in the middle is a fabulous ornament set my mom got last year. Based on her outfit, I think the figurine is probably west African, but she has little poofs just like Isa B and the house looks a lot like a toukoul.
(darn paparazzi never leave me alone!)





Instead of putting up my grandmother's white Lennox china nativity set, I have up the one I bought at Isa's orphanage.



We also have up the Advent calendar that my mom made back when my older brother was little. Since I'm the one who is always most excited about turning over the squares (always have to guess first what it is- you'd think I'd memorized it by now, but sadly I haven't), Mom had us take it this year. I have a kit to make one for our house but, obviously, it didn't happen this year.





And finally, the addition last night that made it feel extra Christmasy...... SNOW! That's right. Here is Seattle we actually got some of the white stuff last night. At a local children's used clothing store I bought Isa the most adorable snowsuit and boots that look as though they're made to match the suit. Purple boots that have silver sparkles in the fur lining- fabulous! After her nap today we geared up. Honestly, I think it takes as much time to get her dressed as we spent outside! She adored the snow and screamed her head off when I picked her up to come inside because it was getting too cold.






video

This was her under-the-snowsuit-attire (minus the Robeez). Stylish, no?!?!



Thursday, December 11, 2008

(almost) 16 months

Isa's (delayed) 15 month check-up was yesterday.

Stats:

Weight- 23lbs 6 oz (back up to 50th percentile)
Height- 30in (stable at 25th percentile)
Head circ- a gi-normous leap to the 50th percentile

And her hair was up in two poofs, so I know the hair didn't account for the head growth (that was my first thought....)

She's right on track developmentally. I expected to be chastised for having her still on the bottle (just before nap and bedtimes), but happily the ped didn't even mention it. Isa was her usual boisterous self- showing off her belly, yucking it up in the mirror and, of course, ripping the heck out of the crinkly paper on the exam table.

She had to get two shots, which went fairly well. The look on her face after the first needle was priceless. She looked up at the MA with a face that plainly said "what the heck did you just do to me????" Luckily, the office stocks little packages of animal crackers and as soon as the MA pulled one out, Isa promptly stopped crying. Blessed, blessed animal crackers!

And, finally, I have resigned myself to the fact that I am one of those moms that hears "words" that my child really isn't saying. I swear she says something akin to "moma" for snowman and "nanta" for Santa. Yes, I probably couldn't tell what the words were without context, but if she consistently says them when pointing to the object or "repeated" to me when I say the word, that counts right?

I promise pics soon- need to load recent shots into the computer......

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

What's in a name?

The most recent post got a comment asking about Isa's name and I realized that I've never actually blogged on that particular topic. So here goes.

Her full first name is Isadora. After my grandmother passed away, my mom and I went through her desk and found a bunch of old family photos (all the way back to tin types!). There were several photos of my grandmother's grandmother, who was named Mary Isadora. I loved the name instantly. Doesn't hurt that I'm also a dance enthusiast and Isadora Duncan was an icon in the world of dance.

Originally I made her nickname-to-be "Isa-boo". But then I found out that Rachel Ray's dog is named Isa-boo. Um... that was out. But our last name starts with B and since the vast majority of my friends in high school and college called me Katie B (rarely just Katie), it seemed appropriate for Isa to become Isa B. And it stuck. There was actually a time a few months after coming home when she wouldn't respond to Isa or Isadora. Isa B only.

I did retain her Ethiopian name as her first middle name and added Mary as a second middle name. My grandmother, my mother, and I are all the first born daughters with the first name Mary. I didn't want Isa to have to use her middle name like I do (total pain in the arse), but I thought it was important that she was a Mary as well.

Oh- one last thought on her name. I pronounce it Izza but I don't mind at all if folks say Eessa (the way it would be pronounced in Spanish, for example). Call her Isa, Isa B, Isadora, Iz. Just DON'T call her Izzy. For some reason, I absolutely abhor that particular nickname. :)

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Warning- excessive bragging ahead

So, Isa B finally decided she wanted to walk for good (the day after I posted that I was done guessing when she'd start, of course). After a whole week and a half, she is now zooming furiously around:

video

You can see that, much like her Mommy, Isa likes to talk with her hands. Heck, the girl just likes to talk. Often. Loudly. To anyone who might possibly be in earshot. She walks around all the time talking and waving her hands like that- very entertaining.

Now that she's no longer focused on learning to walk, her vocabulary has just exploded. She had the same four or so words since around her birthday (kitty, mama, duck-duck, and sometimes doggy) and now suddenly she has so many more. In the last week she's decided that she LOVES the word "no". Sometimes she even says "Nope" which is hysterical. And the best part is that she really does use it appropriately. She'll go up to something she knows she shouldn't touch, shake her head, and say "no-no." Of course, she doesn't always follow her own advice..... Other new words include "choo-choo", "neigh-neigh" (horse), "Papaw" (Isa's grandpa, for whom she used to say"dada"), and "num-num" (i.e, "I'm hungry). It's always obvious at the point in the evening when she's ready for bed, but now when I ask her if she wants to go "night-night" she'll respond back with "nigh-nigh". Hmm... lots of word doubling, huh? Here's a clip of her talking- she's saying "Nina" (her godmother), then she pants (which is her usual way of saying "doggy"), and finally a very distinct "no-no."

video

She has recently discovered her two baby dolls and likes to walk around with them in her arms. It's about 50-50 whether she's smacking the baby's head on the ground or giving her a kiss. We're working on the concept of GENTLE. :) Here's a moment where she's loving her baby.




To add to all the other accomplishments, she's getting better at self-feeding as well. Here she is inspecting a piece of apple and then showing off how great her teeth are at chomping.




Bottom teeth #3 & #4 just broke through. Isa has had several bouts of extreme crankiness in the last couple days and one of her bottom gums feels like a molar is imminent. Fingers crossed that it comes through quickly.

And that's the report from here!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Bliss

Last night, Isa went down uneventfully around 7 p.m.. I planned to stay up and finish my A&P homework, perhaps do my online test for my other class. Instead I got a GINORMOUS headache. The kind where 2 Tylenol make very little dent. All I could do was snuggle up on the couch and rest (more precisely, fall asleep-the best headache remedy I know). My parents were spending the night to watch Isa during this morning's class and my mom in her infinite wisdom sent me to bed at 9 p.m..

And now you're thinking, but wait- this post is titled "bliss"??? What's blissful about a massive headache???

Ah, yes. Isa B proceded to sleep until 6 a.m. That's right. I got 9 (count them-9!!!) hours of sleep last night.

Heaven. Sheer and utter bliss. Almost makes a girl weep with joy.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Randomness (and lots of pics!)

Isa B turned 15 months yesterday and we are approaching the 9 month home mark. Wow, wow, wow- time is FLYING by!!!

As the title suggests, this post is a total mish-mash of randomness.

First off, I finally have a new contract in place. Yeah for money!

Isa still refuses to walk by herself. She's totally capable. Excellent balance and she barely pulls on your hands at all when she walks but she just doesn't believe she can do it yet. I can get her to take a couple little steps at a time, but then she purposefully sits down and crawls. I know that one of these days she's going to take off but have decided to stop making guesses at when!

Her hair continues to grow like crazy. Here is what she typically looks like in the morning:


I'm going to work on being more creative with her hair since I usually just do two barrettes in the front and occasionally 2 not-so-little puffs. She certainly has enough hair to work with, I'm just completely inept. :)

Isa has finally decided that self feeding isn't such a bad thing. This is wonderful! She used to start playing with her food after a few pieces, but now I can put a little bowl of food down in front of her and she'll eat the entire thing. No food being flung off the tray to the floor. No need to actively spoon-feed her. I think she's eating more this way as well. Good all around.

And finally, her favorite new thing to do is kiss people. Particularly other babies. She made sure to get around to all her buddies at our music session yesterday to give them each a kiss. Here she is giving a smooch to her friend Gracie (another beautiful habesha baby!). And then one where Gracie is going in for some lovin'....





ETA- well maybe it won't be that long until she walks after all..... :)


video

Friday, November 7, 2008

The return of Fav Foto Friday

Well, after a long hiatus, FFF returns to the blog. This week's theme is "favorite family photo." Here are some of my favorites:



our first meeting (look how tiny she was!!!)


at her birthday in August- totally captures her personality

As I've mentioned before, we don't have too many photos of us together. We definitely need to have some professional photos taken!

Monday, November 3, 2008

VOTE!!!

Vote!!! Vote!!! Vote!!!

My usual absentee ballot voting status somehow got changed when I finally updated my address on voter registration this year, so for the first time ever I'll go to the polls and vote. I'm very excited to get my "I voted" sticker... they really need to include those with the absentee ballots.

Of course I would love everyone to vote the way my conscience votes (I live in Seattle- it's pretty obvious how I lean) but regardless of your stance JUST VOTE!!!!!!!!!!

Tomorrow will be historic- we'll either have an African-American President elect or a female Vice-President elect. Wow.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Second star to the right

Calling all Lost Boys and anyone else who never wants to grow up!

Isa B is ready with her pixie dust to help you fly to Neverland.





Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Low moments in motherhood

Some days you know you're just not being a good mom.

You know, those days when your child has shoved yet another toy or book under the sofa and is screaming because she can't reach it. And you bend down to retrieve it only to bash your knee on the coffee table. And it's all you can do to not shout obscenities so instead you toss the book across the room.

Or when your child is cranky and decides that it's really fun to pinch you- hard. When you pull her hand away, she simply swoops in with her second hand. So you hold both her little hands and try to tell her calmly that "no, we don't pinch Mommy". She responds by screaming. And it's all you can do to not shout obscenities so instead you plunk her down on the floor, probably not as gently and lovingly as you might usually do it.

Or when your child is overly exhausted because she refused to take a second (sorely needed) nap. And it's bedtime. And she's screaming. She doesn't want to be down and play. She doesn't want to be in your lap. She doesn't want to be in her room at all. And it's all you can do to not shout obscenities so you simply force your crying child to stay in your arms until she finally cries herself to sleep.

You know... those days....

*sigh*

Sunday, October 12, 2008

The Call

One year ago today I was sitting in my office when the phone rang. It was my agency's coordinator and she asked if I was sitting down. The next thing she said was "I know who your daughter is."

I can still hear exactly how her voice sounded saying those words. One sentence changed my entire life.

Only one year ago and at the same time, WHAT a year it has been!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

The funniest word in the English language...

... apparently is "yuck". Or at least Isa B thinks so.

video

Monday, September 29, 2008

Almost walking

Here's the proof that Isa B is tttttthhhhhiiiiiissssss close to walking.

Today we went to the Little Gym with a friend across the street and then out to Bellevue Square just to be out and about. Our first stop was Pottery Barn Kids. They had a little shopping cart that was just Isa's size. Up until today she hasn't figured out "push toys." She pushed them but then wouldn't move her feet to keep up. Didn't work so well, as you can imagine.

Well, today she just took off with the shopping cart. I think she walked around the entire store....
video


This was the scene about 1 minute after we left the mall. :)

Sunday, September 28, 2008

A few new pics


Reading all about being a Cougar (you can never start too early)



Meeting our new friend Gracie at the airport. Welcome home!!!



Her new backyard swing. Super fun.


Playing in a bouncy-house. Also super fun.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Yes, we're still alive

I know, I know. We've been gone for quite a while. But it's been uber-busy. (Yep, that's the only excuse I can think of.....)

So, here's the quick version of what we've done in the last three weeks:

- Isa went to the fair for the first time and loved seeing all the animals. Petting the sheep and the bunnies was quite exciting.

- We had her delayed 12 month check up. She was in a particularly stellar mood (a mirror to admire herself in and loads of crinkly paper on the exam table- wooha!!!!!). The Ped even asked if she was always this "animated." Yes, she is. :)
Stats: 25% for both height and weight (just under 21lbs and about 29in)
She stopped crying about 5 seconds after her shots because the MA gave her animal crackers.

- Unfortunately, her PPD came back positive (I thought we'd done this when she first came home, but maybe we didn't... or maybe I forgot to come back to have it read.....). Luckily, her chest X-ray was negative but we'll be starting meds tomorrow.

- Isa is now pulling up on EVERYTHING in site. She cruises like a champ. I predict full-on walking by Halloween, if not before. She'll walk holding onto my hands but she still walks on her tiptoes. You can never start your ballet training to early, you know.

- She is also sleeping through the night about 90% of the time. Granted, she often wakes up at 5, which is too early for this mama, so I still throw in bed with me. But 7pm-5am is superb. I wish I could get that much sleep.

- Naps are still hit and miss. Twice this week she's taken a 2 1/2 hour nap in the middle of the day which I LOVE. I can get so much done, it's amazing. It's a bit touchy as the evening progresses because she's been awake so long. And somedays she still definitely needs 2 naps. So, I'm just going with the flow right now.

- Great news on the job front. We're in the process of moving my only in-office job to remote status. That will mean I can add more hours (and thus more money- yeah!). I also am in talks with another hospital for a new contract, which would be gi-normous. Fingers crossed that it will go through....... I might actually be able to save money. What would that be like????

- I'm also taking 2 classes this semester so that I can take the Certified Tumor Registrar exam next spring. My Medical Terminology class is entirely online and I think I'll be able to keep up. The 2nd semester of A&P is every Saturday morning. Hoping I can keep up with that because, honestly, being able to take all the tests from home with my book at my side really helped my grade. I don't think my brain can actually hold that information in it right now.

So that is the speed version of the last month or so. I'm sure I'm missing things that I'll think of later. I'm too tired right now to try and load pics from my camera, so I'll pinky swear to post some tomorrow night.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Sleep revisited

We don't have too many sleep issues anymore, thankfully. Isa still goes down each night around 7 p.m. About 98% of the time she'll put herself to sleep right away which is wonderful. We've been able to phase out the middle of the night bottle now that she's eating better during the day. However, she still wakes up around 2-3 a.m. She isn't ready to be fully awake yet but she's done with her crib. In the beginning, I would try to get her back down in her crib. That took at least 1/2 an hour and she would typically keep waking up every hour or so until 7 a.m., when she wanted out of the crib for good. Since I am up until around midnight working, that was a rough schedule.

Oddly enough, one of the reasons our many travels to CA went so well this summer is that Isa actually slept all the way through the night at the hotels when she was in bed with me. So, one night, in a fit of desperation at that 2 a.m. wake up, I just brought her back to bed with me. Low and behold, she snuggled up against me and went right back to sleep. So did I. It was amazing. And so we've fallen into that pattern. She still falls asleep in her crib, but when she wakes up in the wee hours, it's just so much easier to bring her into my room. Some people I mention it to think it's a bad habit (and part of me agrees), but mostly I think that it means we both get enough sleep and I get even more Isa B snuggle time. Win-win situation.

As for daytime sleep, I think she's moving towards one nap a day. She never took a long morning nap (30-45 minutes tops). Several times last week she refused to take the morning nap entirely and simply took an earlier afternoon nap. So, this week we're going to try just the one nap a day. Today we had a playdate at 10, when she would normally go down, so she was distracted during her normal "sleepy" period. We got home around noon and she promptly fell asleep in my arms. :) We hadn't had lunch, so I worried she'd just wake up instantly from hunger if I put her in her crib. We got a nice 2 1/2 hour nap together on the couch instead! She made it happily until about 6:30 and went to bed easily. I'm hoping this continues to work because if I could get a 2 hour stretch during the day when she naps, I could get TONS more done.

Hmm... speaking of, I suppose I should go do some dishes.....

Friday, August 22, 2008

Milestones

What a week! Saturday was Isa B's first birthday. The party with friends was a lot of fun. We just hung around in the backyard. There were cupcakes and other treats. Isa got lots of adorable presents (2 different pink tutus!!). The birthday girl enjoy squishing her cupcake immensely but didn't really want to eat it. Here are some photos:

her new birthday dress, made by Grandma of course-
there are cupcake buttons on the front which you can't see in the photo
and the fabric of the bottom says Happy Birthday all over it


Mommy & Isa B

playing in the backyard with her buddies


blowing out her candles


hmmmm... fun to play with, not so sure about eating it....



Sunday we down to my parents' house for party #2. Again, a fun day although Isa B got tired and had to take a nap in the middle of the festivities. Uncle John got some quality Isa B time. Once he offered her the string on his sweatshirt to chew on, he was her best buddy. Aunt Karen was also quite fun. We can't wait to see them again and are bummed that it won't be until April. More pics...

opening presents


another cupcake!

Uncle John is fun :) (note her stylish new rainbow Baby Legs)

The milestones continued after Sunday. Wednesday marked the 6 month anniversary of when we arrived home. I can't believe it's already been 6 months and at the same time it feels sooooo much longer.

I checked Isa out of Toukoul 2 days after her 6 month birthday, so Thursday marked the day when she has now spent the majority of her life with me. That was a pretty emotional milestone for me.

In other Isa news, she has now figured out how to pull up on every piece of furniture in the living room. While this is fun for her, for me it means that no surface is off limits. Good thing my mantle is really wide- I think it's going to be covered with "don't touch" items for quite a while..... My guess would be full-on walking within 2 months at the most. *sigh* I just need her to slow down (literally and figuratively!).

Friday, August 15, 2008

It's 84 degrees IN MY HOUSE....

.... and I am baking cupcakes. Nuts? Nope- tomorrow is Isa B's birthday! The big 0-1.

A bit of explanation: we've had exceptionally hot weather for WA this week. Several days in the 90s which rarely ever happens. Since we usually top out around 75 in the summer, very few people have AC. Absolutely no breeze lately either, thus the obscene temp inside.

Back to the birthday....

Tomorrow we are having friends over to our house for the aforementioned cupcakes. Obviously, given my love for all things fluffy and girly, they will be covered in pink frosting and sprinkles. Lots of "1st Birthday Princess" decor. I told folks "no presents" but so far it seems that most people are ignoring that little suggestion (which doesn't really surprise me).

My brother and his fiance are in town just in time for the big celebration. Karen is very allergic to cats and Squiggy is shedding like a mad kitty right now. So we'll be having a second party for family at my parent's house on Sunday. John hasn't met Isa yet and we haven't met Karen, so I'm really looking forward to Sunday.

I'll be sure to post lots of pictures of the birthday girl next week!

Monday, August 11, 2008

Tag- I'm it!

So, the lovely Porter has tagged me for a SAHMBOSS award. What is that you may ask???

In her words, it is "some kind of annoying prestigious hybrid meme/award thing, which now - thanks to Michele’s way with words - will officially be known forever as The Super Awesome Hot Mama Blogger or some shit (SAHMBOSS) meme/award."

Here is how this works:

First, I have to answer a little questionnaire thingy which is pretty much all about ME!

Then I have to choose 7 bloggers who I feel are super awesome hot mama bloggers or some shit (see list below) and I “give” them the SAHMBOSS “award”. They will post their own answers to the questionnaire on their own blog and they will choose 7 more recipients. And so it goes!

Here is the questionnaire:

A. Attached or single? So very, very single (unless attached at the hip to Isa counts)

B. Best friend? Hmm... probably my sister. Autumn coming in close behind.

C. Cake or pie? Cake (although homemade apple pie is darn good)

D. Day of choice? Thursday

E. Essential item? Coffee, coffee and more coffee

F. Favorite color? Orange

G. Gummy bears or worms? Mmmm... I am an equal opportunity gummy eater

H. Hometown? Seattle, WA

I. Indulgence? Chocolate. Sleep. Loads of crappy TV.

J. January or July? Ha- trick question as my birthday is in July!!

K. Kids? 1 adorable daughter. 1 adorable kitten.

L. Life isn’t complete without? The warmth of family & friends

M. Marriage date? Well, Porter set a date, so I guess I should too. I'm going for October 9, 2010 (a lovely fall wedding!)

N. Number of brothers & sisters? 1 of each (both getting married next year, actually)

O. Oranges or apples? Apples - preferably Braeburn

P. Phobias? Spiders. Death (didn't have that one until Isa showed up and now I'm terrified)

Q. Quotes? "It's better to regret the things you've done, then regret the things you haven't done"

R. Reasons to smile? She's currently asleep in her crib

S. Season of choice? Fall

T. Tag seven peeps! (see below)

U. Unknown fact about me? I love typing. I sometimes find myself typing words in the air when I'm thinking- that's how much I love the motion of typing. I always wrote out papers longhand in college as I am no good at editing my thoughts once on computer. The bonus was that I then got to type the whole darn paper all at once. :)

V. Vegetable? Pretty much anything roasted.

W. Worst habits? Nail biting. Stress eating.

X. X-ray or ultrasound? Ummm.... is this a trick question also?

Y. Your favorite food? Pizza- combo loaded with everything.

Z. Zodiac sign? Cancer

(I would like to add that it took me until W & X to realize that each question began with the letter of the alphabet it was labeled with. Until that point I just zipped along answering the odd questions. Yep, motherhood kills your brain cells.)

I’m tagging:

1. Jesi

2. Rebekke

3. Porter (re-tag, 'cuz your totally a double SAHMBOSS)

4. Jocelyn (see above)

5. Kerri

Porter was an overachiever and tagged nine, so I'm going to be an underachiever and tag 5 lovely ladies.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

I heart Spoon

Just some fluff for you all today. Here is Isa B with one of her favorite objects- a little rubbery baby spoon (which henceforth shall be known as the Love Spoon).

The bowl of the spoon is a bit too big for Isa to eat comfortably from, but man, does she love to play with it! So, I feed her with another spoon and then pull out the Love Spoon at the end of the meal. It keeps her happy and occupied so I can finish eating. Gotta love the Love Spoon.

The joy is palpable....

Look, Ma! No hands!

Grrrrrrr.

And now for the Spoon Show- live!



video

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Blog Union '08

The Blog Union was amazing! We got to finally meet the adorable Pacey, see the twins again (I'd taken pics of them for their parents when I was in Ethiopia and they were teeny-tiny), and see our best buddy Elsa once more. We also got a mini-vacation down at the beach, which is always lovely.

Unfortunately with so much fun, it was hard to remember to pull the camera out! I got some great pics of Isa playing with Olivia and Ezra and some of our time with Elsa. Lucky for us, Drew is a film producer, so he had a whole crew of people taking still photos and video of our wonderful weekend. For more pics of the BU, go to Drew & Carey's blog.

Isa loved the ocean and (shockingly) didn't try to eat the entire beach. She preferred to smoosh the sand in her hands and never once put it in her mouth. She ate a TON of fruit as well as several tasty Mexican meals. She also decided to finally attempt some more time on her knees. She still commando crawls most of the time, but ever so often will get up on her knees for a few "steps." This means that she's also getting better at pulling her self up. Yesterday she even took a couple teeny little cruising steps along the couch. And this morning I discovered a new tooth (top right as you look at her). So many new and exciting things going on!!!


Here are some of the photos/video that I did get:


Elsa and Isa reading to Porter

Isa riding in style with Olivia and Ezra
After the long BU weekend, Olivia needed a massage!



And finally, a video to show you just how adorable Isa and Elsa are together. We were getting ready for the big Saturday night dinner in our hotel room. Porter was keeping the girls happy by supplying them with Goldfish crackers. She looked over and saw Isa B feeding the crackers to Elsa. How cute is that??? Of course, once I turned on the camera, she wouldn't do it again, but it's still a pretty cute video! (Anything with these two in it is bound to be adorable.....)

video

Monday, July 28, 2008

Family Reunion

This weekend we had our annual family reunion. Isa B had met many of the family members at a wedding just a few weeks after coming home, but that was a long time ago. She was a bit less exuberant than normal with all the new faces but I think she had a good time. And even with her very limited napping, she stayed in a fairly good mood.

Here is Isa playing with her cousin Caroline who is exactly 1 week older than she is:

The girls had an epic wrestling match on an air mattress, which was HYSTERICAL to watch. At one point Isa flung herself head-first off the side. Rather than bursting into tears, as I expected, given her faceplant in the carpet, she was laughing like crazy. They also spent a fair bit of time during the weekend talking to each other. I have really fond memories of playing with my cousins at the picnic every year and I'm glad she's going to get the same experience.

The reunion takes place right on a lake, so I was hoping we'd get to do some swimming, which Isa loves. We took a tiny dip on Saturday, just to see how she'd do but the weather didn't really cooperate. Sunday was supposed to be rainy, gray, and colder than Sunday. So, I didn't even pack our suits. What happens!?!? Sunshine, of course. All afternoon.
To make up for the lack of swimming, Isa and I went out on the boat when the big kids were tubing. She thought the life vest was super funny. Because she's so short, the vest went all the way up to her cheeks and she had to keep her head at a bit of an upward angle. Doesn't she look stylish?? (Note our beloved pacifier is still readily available!)

On an entirely unrelated note, tonight (as I typed this entry) is the first time that Isa has fussed herself to sleep. Normally, if she doesn't fall asleep right after I leave, she fusses. The fussing has always escalated to real crying, which is when I go in and try to calm her. I kept hoping that someday she'd figure out to just stop fussing and go to sleep. I guess someday is today. :)

Friday, July 25, 2008

Fav Foto Friday

Turns out, Fav Foto Friday actually has its origins on this blog. And there's a weekly theme!

This week's theme is FRIENDS. Which is perfect because that's exactly what I was planning to blog about anyhow.

Today we met the wonderful Rebekke and her darling little one Solly, who is 9 months old and also from Ethiopia. Rebekke lives fairly close by and arrived in Addis to meet Solly right as I was leaving with Isa. We've been in contact since before either of us had referrals and finally got to meet IRL. We met at the zoo (after a harrowing 40 minute drive around the parking lot desperate to find a spot-blech) and had an amazing time hanging out. Isa B showed off all her tricks to charm the group, which included Solly's grandma "Gam" and for a bit, dad Brad.

So far we are 2 for 2 when it comes to meeting online friends!!!

Here is Isa holding hands with her newest boyfriend

And here are a few other friends:

Isa & Cassidy

Isa & Evan (who just turned 1 year old!)

Isa & Evan's big brother Adam


And last, but certainly not least, another photo of Isa & Elsa

(as they both enjoy a tasty snack of "shoe"... mmmmmm...)