Monday, February 28, 2011


For the past month now I've been a full time Stay At Home Mom. I must say that "maternity" leave with a child who sleeps through the night and is potty trained is so much more fun!

My days seem to be broken down into small segments around school drops offs, pick ups and nap times. Throw in a few play dates and fun outings, trying to squeeze in exercise plus normal errands and housework and my days fly by. I'm still not sure what we are going to do in terms of childcare when I return to work in May but I'll worry about that later...

Friday, February 25, 2011

And then there were 3!

A bike ride to feed the ducks.

A trip to the zoo.

I'm still getting used to going on outings with all three kids by myself but I'm becoming more comfortable. On the weekends we usually do things together as a family but during the week, or during Pete's bike rides, the kids and I like to get out of the house and go have fun. I was pretty impressed when I took all three kids to the zoo by myself and didn't lose a single one! Nick is at an age where he can help me with the little ones and luckily Noah adores his brother and follows whatever he does. We've also seen a big improvement in the boys behavior lately due to a a new reward system we have been trying out that seems to be working really well. We usually aren't very good at sticking with these things but we're trying to because this one seems to work well for them.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011


This weekend our good friend Kristen and her daughter Linnea came to visit from Colorado to meet Aliyah. Aliyah and Linnea are close in age and it was so fun to have all the kids playing together. Kristen and I were also able to sneak away for dinner and drinks on Saturday night and for pedicures during the kids nap time on Sunday afternoon. Kristen and Linnea gave Aliyah an early birthday present of her own backpack which she loves! We loved having them visit and were so sad to see them go.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Darn That Gravity!

While Aliyah is doing so well and adjusting to life her in the US, she is perhaps still a little behind in terms of motor development skills. From what we saw at the transition home, she likely spent a lot of time in her crib and so it's expected that she has a little catching up to do. We've seen huge improvements already but one challenge continues to be that she falls often and she usually doesn't manage to get her hands in front of her which means she hits the ground head first. One such fall was as the park and the pavement left a big mark on her head. However, it hasn't slowed her down at all and going to the park and going down the slides is still one of her favorite things to do.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

First Century

For the past seven years Pete has run a marathon on Super Bowl Sunday in Southern California. The marathon was his way of honoring the memory of our son Jack as the race was near the anniversary of when we had Jack. The race became a tradition that included renting a beach house and having our families join us. Pete asked me at one point how long I thought we would carry on the tradition and my response was, "as long as it makes sense". This year it was clear to us that it was time to change the tradition for many logistical reasons and also for the simple fact that, due to back problems, Pete really doesn't run much anymore. What he does do instead is cycle. So, this year instead of the marathon he headed down to Palm Springs to participate in his first century bike ride. Luckily everything went well and he had a great ride!

It didn't make sense for the kids and I to go on this trip so unfortunately I don't have any pictures of him during the ride. My mom took Nick for a night while Pete was gone. Noah, who usually follows Nick's lead, had the opportunity to decide what he wanted to do for the day and his decision was art, art and more art!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Half Moon Bay

A few weekends ago we took the kids to Half Moon Bay for the day. It was Aliyah's first trip to the beach and while she wasn't so sure about the sand at first, she quickly learned that it's a lot of fun to play with!

Pete, Nick and Noah checking out the tide pools.
Nick was one happy camper having his favorite for lunch, crab! And yes, that entire crab in front of him was all his.

Two out of three looking at the camera is about the best I can hope for :)

Saturday, February 5, 2011


Overall Aliyah is adjusting really well. We are continually amazed that the child we first met in Ethiopia who was so withdrawn is the same little girl who is currently thriving in her new home. However, that's not to say that we don't have our challenges. It's not uncommon for Aliyah to have a meltdown, tantrum or whatever you want to call it. A good day is for her to have one but on a bad day she can have MANY. While we want her to feel loved and secure, we still have normal childhood issues liking learning to share and reacting to being told no by her parents. When Aliyah has these meltdowns we just hold her and try to comfort her but without giving in.

And then there are the boys. They are both really great with Aliyah but we have definitely had some behavioral challenges with each of them. It's not unexpected since they have experienced a lot of change but it definitely adds a lot of drama to our house. We have reimplemented good behavior charts and we are slowly seeing some improvements. However, there have been a few times where Pete and I have looked at each in the middle of a chaotic moment and just laughed because if we didn't laugh we would probably cry.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Q is for Quilt

One thing I love about motherhood is you never know where a day will take you. It could involve an impromptu bike ride or a puppet show or sometimes even making a quilt. Noah's class was learning about the letter Q last week and listed words that began with that letter. When I went to pick him up, I saw the list and mentioned to his teacher that I used to quilt before I had kids. On the way home Noah asked if we could make a quilt and since I actually had all of the materials at home I thought, sure why not? Once Nick heard of our plans he wanted to make his own so the boys got busy picking out their materials, cutting their squares and deciding on the pattern. They helped me to push the peddle on my ridiculously old sewing machine and by the end of the night they each had a new quilt! I think they turned out pretty well considering that I sewed without using pins (since I didn't want them all over the place) and that the squares weren't always, well, exactly square. Aliyah's isn't quite a quilt but I wanted to make a blanket for her too so I made her a taggy blanket.