Saturday, January 31, 2009

Helping hands

Natalie proved to be a good helper on Friday afternoon. The weather was lovely, and I was inspired to sand and paint the little drawer unit we'd purchased to go with her play kitchen.

Natalie paid attention to every detail and did everything just like Mommy -- she wanted her own gloves, sandpaper, and paint brush. She sat on my improvised stool with me, and got a good amount of paint on the wood (where it was supposed to go). Now we have a cheery little kitchen station for Natalie!

By the way, the little drawer unit came from Michaels ($20 regular price, and we had a 50-percent-off coupon to boot!).

Friday, January 30, 2009

Miscellaneous January cuteness

Yep, it's time for the obligatory, "I can't believe this month is almost over" utterance and catch-up post. Despite our collective head colds and stomach flu throughout January, we managed to have some fun times...

Natalie and Hattie love to play "Ring Around the Rosy" and fall down.

Natalie began falling asleep on Daddy (and Mommy, sometimes) for naps and bedtime, something she'd never really done before without nursing first.

For Natalie's birthday, we invited a few friends over for pizza and decadent chocolate cake (Natalie got her own cupcake). Here, Natalie is trying out her doll sling. Now she can carry her babies like Mommy will be carrying the new baby in a few months. Thanks Ryan, Sarah, and Hattie!

Our friend Sarah gave Natalie a set of Play Doh and a giant collection of cutting and rolling tools. We couldn't let Natalie have all the fun!

Mmmm ... delicious cake! Natalie occasionally asks for a "baby cupcake" or "coclate" -- a daughter after my own stomach ... er ... heart!

We had another birthday celebration when Grandma Julie visited during the week of Natalie's birthday (Jan. 14), right before the stomach flu hit our household. (Miraculously, Grandma didn't get sick!)

Natalie and Hattie enjoyed a bubble bath together -- great fun for everyone (and a great way to keep two kids contained for a little while!).

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Video: lil' singer songwriter

Natalie loves her big Christmas gift from Daddy: her very own guitar (which is really a ukulele). She quickly began playing her original compositions on her "baby garwar."

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Christmas 2008

Our new year is off to a, well, challenging start. We entered our two-week Christmas vacation in relative good health, but have been sick with a lingering head cold for the past couple of weeks.

On top of that, Natalie came down with a stomach flu last week, just after her birthday. Fortunately we'd scheduled her 2-year checkup for the very day she started throwing up, so the doctor was able to reassure us and tell us what to expect. Now, two days later, Natalie's doing much better, though she's still not quite back to normal...

With so much down time, I've finally gotten a chance to sift through all the photos we took in December and so far this year. It looks like we managed to photograph only two of our five Christmas celebrations, however. I guess we got too caught up in the fun of opening gifts and sharing Natalie's enthusiasm!

Christmas at home
Natalie got her very own microphone ...

... and some crayons in a cloth roll-up carrier.

She also got her own "baby bowl," among other fun gifts from mommy and daddy.

In the car on the way to Santa Rosa (by way of our friends' house in Mountain View), Natalie fell asleep while drawing in the backseat.

Christmas in Santa Rosa (with Grandma and Grandpa Parker)
Natalie and Grandpa had fun playing with some of Grandpa's toys.

I think it's safe to say that Natalie liked everything to do with Christmas, but she was most vocal about liking the lights on the tree.

Natalie and her cousin Landon had fun playing with his new train set.

Aunt Emily helped Natalie open a gift of wooden fruit and vegetables.

Aunt Becky and Landon were quickly surrounded by a pile of gifts opened and unopened.

Grandma and Grandpa gave Natalie her own play kitchen -- just the right size for our home. Natalie instantly began cooking all kinds of treats for everyone, and she continues to play with her kitchen every day!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Happy 2nd Birthday, Natalie!

If you were to ask Natalie, "How old are you?" she'd answer, "two weeks." We're working on that...

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Happy new year!

Since I'm currently pinned under a sleeping/nursing Natalie, I'll share a brief update and perhaps do a year-in-review photo collection (I can't get to the camera to upload the new photos!).

Natalie is in the process of getting her own room, complete with her own bed. Bret and I have moved my craft stuff out of Natalie's room after we got rid of our guest bed (sorry, mom!). Now Bret and I share a hobby room: music-recording stuff and instruments on one side, paper-craft supplies on the other, all of which is surrounded by bookcases. It's coming together nicely, albeit slowly, and I hope Natalie likes her room!

We had several wonderful Christmas celebrations, which included traveling to Santa Rosa for about a week, coming home for a few days, and then traveling to Fresno over New Year's.

Without further ado (well, there might be further ado -- Natalie just woke up!), here's a year in review...




Natalie began walking in early April, but I apparently only posted a video of the event, so I don't have a photo for the review...