Sunday, January 24, 2010

Farewell to 2009...

So, 2009 is officially in the past and we have a whole new year ahead of us. Last year was a great year for us, and I thought I would share a quick recap for you...
Of course, we started the year with a brand new (three week) old baby. Everything was new again, as we now had two kiddos. We learned a lot, adjusted a lot and slept a little. ;0)
We started out the year welcoming a new member of our 'family.' Our best friends (Brendan & Liz) had their first baby, beautiful Madisen, which immediately meant a new best friend for Avalee. ;0)
We had a great visit with my sister-in-law, Ceara who met her new niece for the first time. Zavion loved seeing his Aunt Ceara again, and put on quite the show while she was here. LOL! And, we got to catch up a little too, even if the visit was much too short.

We went bowling; Avalee slept through all of it and Z had a blast.

We had another visit from a friend of mine from high school. She lives in Germany now, so the visit was pretty special. Her daughter is about a year younger than Zavion, so they got to play together and we got to catch up (and see Sarah's cute little baby bump!).

We got more snow (in February?!) and Z had a blast sledding, building a snowman, and...
Throwing snowballs!

We experienced what it would be like to have twins...but only for a week...when I watched Madi while Liz went back to work. It was crazy, but lots of fun too!

We got another visit, this time from my brother, John. He decided to surprise my parents, so we (Colin & I) set it all up with him; we made up a story to pick him up from the airport, than he showed up at my parents house the next day. We totally pulled it off and it was a great surprise! It was also John's first time meeting Avalee and I loved seeing her little face the first time she saw him...priceless! And, when Z came downstairs to find Uncle hiding on the couch (one of Z's favorite games) he was ecstatic!
Z took swim lessons again, and had a great time.

We had lots of sunny day lunches with Daddy (and even some rainy day ones too...yay for the mall, and Charlies!).

We took a spontaneous trip to the beach after hearing the temperature at the coast would be in the 70s (in April!). It was Avalee's first trip to the coast and she loved it! It was also our first real trip with the four of us, and it was an amazing day that will forever be with me.
Avalee rolled over, than sat up. She got her first taste of solid food, and LOVED it.

We celebrated our first Mother's Day and Father's Day as parents of two kids.

We had our family reunion and took the kids to The Enchanted Forest for the first time.
We took both kids to the pool and watched them both swim like fishies!

We went camping during THE heat wave. It's definitely not something I would want to repeat, but despite three digit temperatures, we still managed to have a great time.
We went to Seaside for a few days and had a great time hanging out at the pool, swimming in the pool and exploring the town.

Avalee started crawling!

We added a new family member; Cup, the fish. Z was ecstatic to get his own fish and spent the first few days singning, reading, and talking to him.

We found out another little family member in on the way; my sister-in-law and her hubby are expecting their first baby in April! Of course, Colin and I are very excited, but but Zavion is so cute with how excited his is for his “new baby cousin.” :0)

We started a new football season and introduced our newest Duck to the game.

We remodeled the dining room. We always hated the carpet in there, so tore it out, put laminate in than added some new paint, blinds, cabinet and dining room table! (We didn't get very good before & after shots, so this is the best we have...)

We went to VEGAS sans kiddos! We missed the kids terribly, but still managed to have a fabulous time. ;0)

We watched our little boy turn four and enjoyed a fun Superman birthday party with him.
We went to the pumpkin patch, carved some pumpkins and dressed up the kids for Halloween (A's first!).

We celebrated Thanksgiving with family, food and fun.
We drove to Hood River with two kids to ride The Polar Express. It was a loong drive to and from, but definitely worth it to see the look on Z's face when the 'conductor' yelled, “Aaaal aboard!” or when the train started moving or when Santa got on!

We took our annual trip to the Christmas tree farm, this time with a 'plus one' and picked out the perfect tree.

We celebrated Avalee's first birthday with lots of family & friends, lots of fun and lots of presents!

We celebrated Christmas at home with family, and had a great day.

And, we ended the year with a trip to California for the Rose Bowl!

And...along the way...
had lots of playdates, made baby food,

took trips to the park, did some crafts, cooked some yummy food, took trips to the pool, canned a lot of pickles...and...
We shared a lot, laughed a lot, and loved a LOT!!

Here's to 2010!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Christmas (yea, I know...about time!)!

So, Christmas this year (ok, ok...last year!) was great! Avalee was old enough to understand a little better what was going on (or at least not sleeping in her bouncy seat all day, like last year), and Z is just at that perfect age to really enjoy Christmas.
We actually kicked off our festivities the night before... Zavion and I had made cookies, and he decorated some special just for Santa. He write Santa a letter, and put out the cookies (and carrots and celery for the reindeer). Than he and Avalee each got to open a present, which was new jammies.
The next morning, we woke them up (isn't it supposed to be the other way around??) to tell them Santa had come. When they got downstairs, Z found a new bike and A found a Little People playset. Z immediately had to try out his bike (good call on Colin's part to have Z's helmet ready) and once it passed his approval, it was onto stockings. Now, we really go all out on stockings around here. It was that way when I was growing up, and now it's something we do. We don't just throw in some fruit and nuts; they are filled with little presents (and minimal candy) that are all wrapped individually. It's really fun, and honestly, my favorite part!
After stockings, it was a whirlwind of unwrapping gifts... Both kids got lots of books, DVDs (two Signing Times!), clothes, a couple Wii games and a few toys. And, Z got his big gift, the one he asked Santa for everytime he saw him; THE Batcave (and I'm happy to report that he has played with it everyday since Christmas).
Than, my parents and sister came over and we exchanged a LOT more gifts. Grandma and Grandpa only got the kids a few things ;0); let's just say after a couple hours, we were finally ready to head out for our tradition 'breakfast.' We had a great meal at IHOP (even though poor A got sick and threw up all over she and I) and capped off round two of Christmas for us. ;0)
Later, Colin's mom came by to spend the evening with us and unwrap a few more gifts, than his dad came by as well.
All together, it was a great day filled with lots of fun, laughter and family. Christmas really is my favorite holiday, and I was reminded again just why that is. I love spending the day with all the people I love, and I love seeing the looks on their faces when they get a really special gift (I will have another blog soon about some of the special gifts we made for everyone).
I hope everyone else had a great holiday and that your New Year is going well so far (and, I promise to blog more frequently...I swear!)!

Z checking out his new bike

Avalee loves her new amusement park

A digging into her stocking

Love for the presents they gave one another (A gave Z a Superman mug & Z gave A a book of nursey rhymes)


Grandma & Avalee

Grandpa & Z

Z trying out his new bike

Z showing off his new sweater from Grandpa Hi

Grandpa Hi helping Z play with his new silly putty

Sunday, January 3, 2010

We're back!

Well, we made it back from our trip to the Rose Bowl in one piece. We were gone four days, and two of those included 16 hours of driving. We lucked out with the weather and encountered no snow or ice in the pass, so that was a huge relief.
Unfortunately, our Ducks lost, but we still came away with a fun experience. Just getting to go to the Rose Bowl was amazing. We were in awe much of the time we were there, and even after the loss, were still so proud of our Pac Ten champs!
And, we got to spend some quality time with my brother and his girlfriend. They offered up their apartment for us to stay, and played tour guide for us while we were there. We were able to spend New Years Eve with them and had a great time; enjoyed some drinks and video games. It was perfect!
We are definitely done with trips for awhile, and I'm done leaving my kiddos for a long time. I was so happy to get back to them, and we spent most of the first day home just kissing, hugging, playing and talking.

View of Mt. Shasta from the road

We're at the Rose Bowl!

Our section...Go Ducks!

My brother, John, his girlfriend, Lindsey, me & Colin
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