Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Cardinals, Grandparents?

Jason's paternal grand parents both died in the past eight months. As a result, Jason and his uncle have been taking care of business as they are the heirs. We've gotten a few things from their estate that have been great to keep in the family. His grandparents lived on the old family farm up in Green Bay. Most of the land had been parceled off but they resided in the old farm house. They were wonderful people who liked their routine and their birds. They always sent the kids cards for every holiday, even the ones people don't usually give gifts for. The kids loved it. Cecelia even remembers their birds they had. It is odd that she remembers them because we hadn't seen them in their house since Coletyn was a baby. We would often stop and meet them for a meal while driving through Green Bay.

We've also had some visitors for a while. Since early spring, we have had some cardinals in and around our yard. I've always heard that cardinals are someone looking over you. We have NEVER had cardinals in our area before so to see these cardinals shortly after the passing of Jason's grandparents who LOVED birds is pretty comforting. I've since seen the female cardinals as well. I never knew they weren't as read as the males. We want to get a bird feeder in hopes to keep them around!

A few other items from Jason's grandparents in the pictures below.


wagon wheel, bird bath, Eiting sign

three more wagon wheels (wash bins are from a friend)

last wagon wheel
We think all the wagon wheels used to be operational on the family farm. It' really cool to have them!

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

OLD Blog

*I've reposted these from a page on my blog to the feed so that I can transfer them to a printed book to have! Apologies for the duplicates, or enjoy for the first time!

March 2009

Posted by eitings on March 1, 2009 at 9:54 PM
Cecelia will be three months old... wow time is flying. I have 4 weeks of maternity leave left. Looks like Jason will be joining me as he is laid off currently. We are hoping it will only be a week or two. Of course the timing isn't the best as I am not working now either. Fortunately I am a planner and we'll will be fine.

Cecelia has started flirting with rolling from her belly to her back. She only does it when she is really upset because she does not enjoy tummy time! She is smiling and cooing up a storm. She gets more and more personality every day. She recently took her first airplane ride to Houston to see Great Grandma Harwell, Great Uncle Drew, and Great Aunt Carole. She slept on the plane the whole way! We also drove round trip to Green Bay this weekend so Cecelia could meet Great Grandparents Bill and Phyllis (Eitings). Long time to be in a car seat for a little one but she slept again!!

Nothing else happening. I am starting to work out the details of Cecelia's baptism. Stay tuned.


 Posted by eitings on March 25, 2009 at 11:03 PM
CHEESE and RICE... So ticked. Just entered a new blog and forgot to save it before logging out. Needless to say I'll have to reenter it some other time. I have to go to bed!!

Visit to the Domes/ 3 month pictures

 Posted by eitings on March 17, 2009 at 1:34 AM
So... we attempted to take our own 3 month pictures today and I think we need to go to Sears. If she could sit up and we had a better back drop it would have been okay. I will post attempted pictures sometime. Some may question why we need another picture... if you knew how many Jason has taken you would be astonished!!!

After the photo shoot we went to the Domes. I can actually say I've never been there. Of course the camera followed us. I posted pictures for you to see. [ I just have to mention that as I am writing this Cecelia is tooting into the baby  monitor. So adorable... I digress!] It is supposed to be 68 degrees tomorrow so we are headed to the Zoo. Jason was laid off today and he has 2 hours of work tomorrow so we are taking field trips. He has work the rest of the week and next. :)

By the end of the week I plan to have Cecelia's clothes changed out. Her toes are poking through the bottom of her 0-3 month clothing. 3-6 here we come. I am surprised how attached I am to some of the outfits. It will be sad to see them packed up yet fun to think of who will wear them next. NO- we haven't started #2 yet!!

We finished helping Mom with her new house this weekend. Her moving truck comes on Friday. The dogs will be heading there sometime in the next week, we think.

New House

 Posted by eitings on March 11, 2009 at 12:15 AM
No, we are not moving. My mother bought a new house. I've been busy painting. I have learned something.... I will never put up wallpaper. Ever!!! Algoma didn't sell yet but it is currently being rented. The moving truck comes on March 20th. 1 more weekend to finish new flooring as I will finish painting this week. Maternity leaves are good for more than just watching baby I guess!!

Cecelia turned 3 months old today. Jason and I are planning a photo shoot in the next week. Don't worry... three month pictures should be in the mail shortly. We are going to see if we can pull it off without going to Sears for photos. Lord knows the camera is expensive enough, it should do just fine.

I don't want to speak too soon, but it appears as thought Jason has skirted through another winter without being laid off. Technically he was laid off for 6 hours. They found something.

I am going to go pick the paint out of my hair (painiting ceilings stink!) and then go to bed. The little peanut still gets up between 2 and 5 to eat. Once or twice she'll sleep a 10 hour stretch. This is rare and doesn't matter because I still have to get up to pump. 10 hours is a long time to go without exploding!!! Is that too much information??

Mommy back to work

 Posted by eitings on April 4, 2009 at 6:33 PM
Well, I made it through my first week back to work. One of the hardest things I've ever had to do was get in the car Monday morning, alone. It's amazing how much your life can change in such a short amount of time. I probably could have picked a better week to go back to work. It was parent teacher conferences. That meant I had to work until 7 two nights this week. Talk about putting a crimp in my baby time.

As for Cecelia, she is growing fast. She now prefers to sit up. She is done with that 45 degree angle thing. Unfortunately, all of her toys that she sits in are at that angle. She tries to sit up while in them. While in the bath too! We decided she was ready for her exercise saucer and her jumper. Today was the first day it appeared as though she had some control over her hands. I think they actually are doing what she wants them to do now!! She is also sleeping through the night. (knock on wood) At least 5 nights a week she is sleeping a 10-11 hour stretch. I still can't find the urge to sleep train her = letting her cry her self to sleep in her crib. She is going to grow so fast, I just can't bring myself to do it. I think, however, that I will have to during spring break. She will be starting child care in May. She will be attending an in home daycare and I doubt "Auntie Linda" is going to rock her to sleep when she has others running around.

I had to switch out her closet in the last few weeks. She is officially in 3-6 month clothes. I can't believe how attached you can get to some of the small outfits I packed away for the next one. I have plenty to replace. Don't worry. It is so fun to shop for her. Everything is so cute. Not a huge fan of Pooh, but other than that, adorable outfits.

Jason spend the week home on vacation and played "home husband!" I am pretty sure he enjoyed himself. He took advantage of his time off and created some photography websites. I think he is secretly thinking that he will be able to switch careers. (Wishful thinking!) I am thankful for his obsession, however. We have gotten many nice pictures of Cecelia. Speaking of pictures... three month pictures will be in the mail soon. If I don't send you one, I will post them on the website soon. We ended up not having to go and get some done. We found great ones from the hundreds, yes I said hundreds, that Jason has taken.

We are going to breakfast with the Easter bunny tomorrow. Cecelia's baptism is officially scheduled for April 26th. Other than that, life is simple (as simple as it can be for a working mother). Hopefully it will stay that way for awhile.

April 25, 2009

 Posted by eitings on April 25, 2009 at 11:17 PM
Hello,  hello, hello. Tomorrow is Cecelia's baptism. She will be wearing the long anticipated baptism gown that I wore, Erica wore, the cousins wore, my mother wore and I am sure a few more. It took some work to find it but Aunt Laurie came through. For something that is at least 50 years old, it held up okay in the laundry. Some of the lace could be in better shape but it will do. Originally after I washed it I though Cecelia wouldn't be able to wear it because it was falling apart. I even went out and bought a new gown. I took a second look and it will be fine for a couple of hours. We'll just have to not let her suck on the sleeves for fear of her sucking the lace down her throat!! Family is coming over after the baptism for lunch and then hopefully I can have some time with my munchkin before starting yet another week of work. Daddy is taking off this week to stay home with Cecelia. He has many plans that include lunch with me on Tuesday for my birthday. Jason will bring Cecelia to school! Also, a dentist apt, zoo trip and a photo meeting are all on tap for him for the week.

Cecelia is offically sleep trained.  You plop her in her crib to go to sleep at night and poof, she is sleeping. Jason's job is to transfer this skill to naps during the day so she is ready for the sitter the following week. I miss that cuddle time rocking her to sleep. That's why even though I am dog tired, I love when she wakes up in the night so we can have our time together with  no one around. Is there anything better than motherhood??

I am going to be 27 on Tuesday. I don't quite know how I feel about that. I have officially reached the age where I have to do the math when someone asks me how old I am. I can't believe how fast time flies.

Hope all is well. Good luck surviving these April showers. Can't wait for May flowers to arrive!!!

Missing Grandpa Tom

 Posted by eitings on April 12, 2009 at 10:06 PM
Today, Easter, is the anniversary of Dad's death. Two years. Times like these I am sad he will not meet Cecelia and she will never know him. I know he is looking down on us but it doesn't feel the same as if he were here.

We went to Easter service at Luke's church. Our cousin Luke (mom's cousin's son) is a new pastor at a Lutheran church in Racine. We went there for his service. Cecelia didn't take well to the trumpets so Jason sat in the foyer with her. She slept most of the time. This is also the church where Cecelia will be baptized on the 26th. Are the words baptism and christening interchangeable? I am so confused. We are Lutheran. Which one are we to use? Any how, Erica (my sister) is going to be Cecelia's godmother and Uncle Jim (Jason's father's brother) is going to be the godfather.

The Easter bunny came to the house last night. He/she didn't hide eggs but they left a Easter bag for Cecelia. In it she got 3 sun hats for spending time on the boat as well as sunglasses and hair decorations (if she ever grows any!). Finally, she got an Easter book. Grandma Leslie came over for ham and brought yet another musical toy. Jason and I now sing all the song from Cecelia's toys in our sleep. Comes in handy when you are out and about and singing one for her toys songs, when the toy isn't there, calms her down.

One last note... we started sleep training Cecelia on Friday night. Not as miserable as I though it would be. Only lasted a half hour or so. I was thankful. I didn't want to have one of those stories about the hours long sleep training session.

Nothing else is new. Jason got a sale of one of his pictures from a complete stranger on his website! Our weekend summers are starting to fill up. If you want to book us, talk to us soon. We have decided that camping with a 6 month old will not fly this summer, so don't call us for that.

I am off this week for my spring break. I plan on going to the museum on Monday with a girlfriend and maybe the art museum with Auntie Erica on Wednesday. Mostly, I am going to enjoy my time home again with my little princess. Sorry Erica, you have to share your title!!!!
May Day

 Posted by eitings on May 19, 2009 at 11:49 PM
My apologies for not writing in a while....

The baptism went well. Cecelia made it in the 50 year old dress until after her part of the service. They she proceeded to poop through EVERYTHING!! Don't know why I am surprised.

Nothing really new except the fact that Cecelia has started child care. Cecelia has taken to "Auntie" Linda quite well. I wonder how she is napping for Linda since she still cries herself to sleep on naps. Night time is a piece of cake, however. I don't get it!!

Cecelia passed her 5 month birthday. She is almost sitting up without support and is devouring veggies and fruits (baby food) twice a day. When this week is over, I'll only have three weeks of school. Jason is taking a four day weekend and we are going to Winnebago (Grandma Nor's) to fish. Let me correct that, he is going to fish. I am going to enjoy someone else cooking dinner, the beautiful weather, and Cecelia's first time on the boat--- other than when she was in utero and Daddy tried to reenact "Deadliest Catch" on Lake Michigan.

Starting to think of fun things to do for Cecelia's 6 month pictures. I have a few ideas that I'll need to take to the resident photographer. Stay tuned!!

First Cold... Swine Flu???

 Posted by eitings on September 26, 2009 at 10:16 PM

It appears as though something, maybe H1N1 is making its way through our house. Jason had it and now Cecelia and I have it. Poor thing all stuffed up and coughing. I wish she could have some medicine. The steam baths, Vicks plug in, and saline nose drops seem to be doing all they can do at the moment. 9 1/2 months old and just her first cold. Looks like that breastfeeding paid off!!!

Not much else going on. I am in full swing at school. I am trying to figure out how my list of responsibilities has grown from just teacher to ...
full time teacher, assistive technology coordinator, building leadership team, REACH team, mentor to new special ed teacher, elementary spec ed department chair, March Madness organizer, ... I am sure I missed something. To top it off, I am taking a 3 credit mentoring course this semester and the Talent Show (which I run) at school chaos starts soon. Oh, yeah, I am a mommy too!! The good thing is since I received my master's degree in December of last year, I will be officially making masters pay this year. It isn't reflected in my check until November, but then I will be getting my new pay and I'll get a fat backpay check for the beginning of the school year. Whoo Hoo!!!

Jason is STILL laid off. No work in the near future. He has kept himself busy being a daddy and getting more proficient on this new photography endeavor. He actually shot a wedding today, shot an engagement session on Thursday and tomorrow he will be a volunteer photographer for the Susan Kohmen Run/Walk at the Lakefront (I found the add on Craig's List- You are welcome darling!!). He has also done some photography classes and some online webinars. I am glad he's found something that he likes to do. It can get a little overbearing sometimes, however. Like when he is trying to take pictures of the pictures on the jumbotron at Miller Park. I just roll my eyes!!!

Where did the baby go?

 Posted by eitings on September 16, 2009 at 10:13 PM

We seem to have a little peanut who is rocking and rolling in her new found freedom. Here freedom isn't quite all inclusive yet. Not crawling or walking but man can she get around. Just in the last week we have woken her up facing the opposite direction in her crib wedged in the corner. When you open the door, Cecelia gives you that look like she is saying, "I didn't do anything!" Too cute!!! I think playtime is a bit more enjoyable now too. She can get to whatever toy she wants. Granted she isn't crawling to get there, she rocks, rolls, scoots... whatever mode of travel (except crawling) she can use until she gets what she wants!!! I am sure by the next time I write she will probably be crawling.

On a separate note, Jason has been laid off. I think this was week 6 or 7. There isn't an end in sight. All we know is he will have a job with his company when there is work. Seems as though our nation's economy issues have finally trickled down in to commercial/industrial construction. Jason has been picking up odd jobs, here and there, one of them being getting paid to shoot pictures. I know... that little hobby he started actually turned into something!! We are thinking best case scenario he will be back to work around January. Worse case scenario, he won't be back until spring. Good think I am a planner, financially. Thanks to his company for giving us all of 48 hours notice about the lay off. Makes it real easy for a family to plan. The upside of everything is that he gets to play "daddy." I keep telling him to enjoy this time with his daughter. He may not get to spend time like this with any of our other kids!!

Going back to school was hard. MUCH harder than after I went back after maternity leave. I think in April I set a goal for myself. I only had to make it until June. Now going back, it hit me. I am a real working mother. Hardest thing I do every day is kiss my sweet angel goodbye. I am jealous of Jason getting to spend all that time with her.

Nows the time we usually start planning our winter ski trips. 1 to the UP and 1 to Colorado. Looks like Colorado will be out this year. We were planning a Dells trip between Christmas and New Years too. Both are scratched. Maybe next year. We'll stay home and enjoy our daughter. Not a shabby consolation prize!!

By George... We've Got Teeth

 Posted by eitings on August 15, 2009 at 3:48 PM

Cecelia finally has something sharp poking through her bottom gum line. I was starting to get worried that she wasn't going to get any teeth. She is 8 months and 1 week. Mom said I didn't get teeth until I was 11 months!

Woo hoo!!

Summer Wrapping Up

 Posted by eitings on August 14, 2009 at 12:20 PM

I am looking at the calendar... today is my last day of summer va-cay without any school commitments. I am on so many extras that I start with something every day on Monday. Kids start school the 1st. Boo hoo.... the time went so fast.

Jason has been laid off all week and will be off next as well. We made the most of this week by getting out and about. On Monday we went to Aunt Laurie's lake house. Cecelia loves the beach. On Tuesday we went to a kiddie pool. On Wednesday we went to the State Fair. Cecelia had her first baked potato and cream puff (not the cream part). She got to meet the cows, goats, and pigs. She got a kick out of the pigs snorting at her. She talked back to them. Thursday we went to the zoo*. For the first time she actually followed the animals and noticed what she was supposed to look at... animal versus inanimate object! Cecelia also got to ride on the train and the carousel for the first time with her daddy. She picked the ostrich to ride. She was bummed when the ride was over.

The summer has gone so fast and Cecelia has gotten so big. This summer she accomplished sitting up, righting herself after flopping over, eating finger foods (and actually getting them to her mouth), drinking from a straw and I swear she is saying mommy... "mmmmma!" We had the best time. I hope I can stop and appreciate all her milestones while I am back at work. I bet I will blink and she will be one. :(

We will be wrapping up the summer with a Packer game next weekend and hopefully one more trip out with the boat. We hope everyone enjoyed their summer!

Take a peek at new pictures and videos.

* So side note zoo story... they have the Animals from Down Under exhibit until September 7th. Jason and I decided to take Cecelia in to it. It is great. They give you bird seeds on a stick and you go into this huge cage (with 50 other people) and feed hundreds of birds. It was a great experiences... I could hear "Feed the Birds" from Marry Poppins in my head. I coaxed a bird down with my seeds on a stick to just inches from Cecelia's face. She could reach out and touch ( I didn't' let her touch) the bird if she wanted. All of a sudden someone slammed the metal door to the huge cage. The birds went ape shit flying around. After the chaos settled, me protecting Cecelia's head the whole time.... didn't need a baby missing an eye ball... we though we survived unscathed.... or so we thought. Upon further exploration, we found bird poop on Cecelia's arm and blood on the both of us. Thinking a bird hooked a talon on the fence when it freaked out and proceeded to drop blood all over us. Long story short... we are watching for signs of avian flu. (just kidding)...

Summer Flying...

 Posted by eitings on July 27, 2009 at 12:24 AM

Yet another great weekend at the lake. We just got home from my grandparents lake home on Winnebago just south of Oshkosh. The weather was spotty but we had a great time. We got to go a little earlier than planned due to the fact that Jason was laid off on Thursday and Friday. (He is back to work on Monday, so don't fret!)
Jason went skiing and fishing. He caught some good ones. He even filleted them this time!!! Cecelia went swimming and floating in the lake again and I enjoyed having a few extra hands to help out.

3 weeks left until I start back to school. Boo hoo!! I can't believe how fast this summer is going. Cecelia and I have enjoyed our time together. Between the zoo, wading pool, shopping and weekend trips- we've been busy!

In the last few weeks, Cecelia is able to sit up completely on her own. She is also drinking from and open glass and a straw, starting to eat foods other than baby food, starting to make familiar sounds, and is starting to mimmic our behavior. She loves to drink from my glass and is starting to put her arms in the air for "So Big." Still no teeth or crawling yet. I am sure they are right around the corner. 

Cecelia's new adventures

 Posted by eitings on July 6, 2009 at 11:29 AM

July 4th weekend....

We went up to Grams and Papoo's on Lake Winnebago for the 4th. Cecelia tried many new things including swimming in the lake. She likes to recline in her little infant boat just like her G-ma likes to float on the lake. Vidoes are posted as well as pics in the next few days.  Looks like I have a little water bug in the making.

Hope everyone had a great 4th.

6 month pics

 Posted by eitings on July 1, 2009 at 2:16 PM

July 1st.... wow, school will be back on soon... I am having so much fun with Cecelia. She is napping now... well actually, she is spitting and talking herself to sleep. I can hear her on the monitor.. :)

The photo shoot in the front yard this weekend was successful, as you will see by the posted pictures. I am already trying to rack  my brain for what we can do for the next official photo shoot. It will be fall so we probably will do something outside again.

What you can't see in the pictures is what ended the photo shoot... she was sitting in front of some rocks. After the last pic, she fell backwards (not 100% stable sitting up yet) and was millimeters from cracking head on the rocks... whew... crisis averted.

With the heat and then the cold/rain, we haven't gotten out of the house much lately. This weekend that will change as we are going to Lake Winnebago for the 4th of July.

The list of things I wanted to accomplish in the house the summer seems to be getting longer. I really have to stop napping when Cecelia naps... :wink:

Summer Heat

 Posted by eitings on June 24, 2009 at 12:45 PM

So, I believe it is 100 today with the heat index. We are still working out how to sleep a baby in the air conditioning. Unfortunately, Cecelia's room in on the lowest level of our tri-level house. Cold air sinks.... needless to say, Cecelia is wearing winter pjs to bed still.

We went out a got a little pool for the deck. I have plans to take Cecelia outside to play in it after her nap today. I am sure a photo session will be involved!

I can't get over how quickly she is growing. She has started spitting for fun. Not with a mouth full of food, but I am sure that will be soon.

Hope everyone is beating the heat. Check out the new pics and videos I uploaded.

Father's Day 2009

 Posted by eitings on June 21, 2009 at 10:07 PM

Happy Father's Day Jason and all the other dads out there.  A holiday that used to hold so much sadness has a reason to be happy again.

Lots has happened since my last post. School is over. I am a full time mommy again!! Cecelia has turned six months old. She has started solid foods and is sooooo close to sitting up. I think this week, we'll start playing with the sippie cup. That should be fun. At her 6 month visit, Cecelia weighed 15lbs 12 oz and was 26 1/2 inches long. My little peanut (25%tile) is now an average baby just shy of the 50%tile for length and weight.

Cecelia and I don't have much planned for our summer off together. We are trying to do something every day. Trip to the zoo, grocery store, Target, etc. One big task this summer will be getting Cecelia on a better schedule. I think we've almost accomplished this, with thanks to Daddy when he was laid off for a week and a half (don't worry, he is back to work now!). Cecelia now functions like a real baby. Napping at 9 and 1 in her crib, putting herself to sleep. Sometimes she still fusses for a few minutes, but inevitably falls to sleep on her own. (G-Ma (Grandma's Leslie's new name she is trying out) had a hard time following the sleep training rules, but hung in there.) With the addition of solid foods, Cecelia is also eating less frequently. Still had been about every two hours until almost 5 1/2 months!

For Father's Day, Cecelia got Daddy a CARD (we joke at home because Cecelia's first Mother's Day card to me is still in the "mail" as Daddy says it is), a Brewers' Jersey (Braun) and a stepping stone for his garden. Cecelia and I were going to put her feet prints into it and decorate it for Daddy, but I decided that mixing cement and washing cement off of a baby wasn't something that I could do alone. So we will make it as a family this week.

I will upload pics and videos this week. I finally think I figured out how to upload videos to this free webpage. Had to google directions. They should be up soon. They are taking  a long time to load.

We hope this Fathers' Day finds you happy and healthy.

Big Girl

 Posted by eitings on October 8, 2009 at 11:20 PM
Cecelia took her first bath in the big bath tub today. There will not be any pictures posted because I was in with her!!! She loved. Thanks for the bath mat Aunt Laurie!!

Take a peek at the new videos posted to see what else she is up to these days!!

Jason has work next week. It is only one week. But we will take what we can get.

I forgot to write in my last post that we went to get pumpkins last weekend. We took Cecelia. These pics will be up soon!! When I was a girl, my dad would always take me and my sister to Patterson's on 124th and Laytonish. Jason and I have continued to go and now we will continue to take our kids. The tradition includes picking out pumpkins, getting apple cider, apples (Johnathan to be exact), popcorn, and caramel apples. They make the best caramel apples!!!  We always make pies. This year I made two pies, 1 9 x 13 apple crisps, and a crock pot full of homemade applesauce (which I canned). Yummmmmmy!!

Da da!!

 Posted by eitings on October 6, 2009 at 11:22 PM
We have first words. "da da!"

Make sure to take a peek at the video I uploaded. She is so cute. Pretty sure we have the cutest baby EVER!! Cecelia is still doing anything but crawling. Her new thing is to get up on all fours. Instead of on her knees, she is on her feet like a bear walk. That little stinker. She is going to do anything but crawl. She is getting really good at walking. She is walking holding onto the couch and will walk holding onto one hand. So adorable... little wobbly legs!!

Jason is still laid off. He has a wedding to shoot this weekend and a couple of engagement sessions to shoot this fall. He has two weddings booked for next summer and is looking for more. He shot the Susan G Komen run/walk. I think he felt important!!!

I am starting to think about planning Cecelia's first birthday. Wow, almost a year!! Keep posted. As the weather is getting colder, we are regretting not being outside as much. We will have to get as many walks in as we can before the flurries start!!

Chatty Cathy

 Posted by eitings on October 27, 2009 at 11:05 PM
Just wanted to write a quick note. My pillow is callling my name so I will be brief.

Jason is back to work. 3rd shift. Beggars can't be choosers. He is actually outsourced to another company. He is actually getting more sleep (just at a different part of the day) than I am at night, so don't feet too bad for him!!!

Cecelia has started talking in the last few weeks. She started with "Daddy" as clear as day. Last week she added "uh oh" to her list. A little more mumbled than the daddy. This week she is saying "Bob." We've narrowed down Bob to a few options of what it might mean. 1. bye bye, 2. bunny bear (her nickname) 3. boob 4. bottle (probably not- doesn't get many of these) 5. binky 6. who know what else. Sometimes she will change the end of Bob to be more like Bom... I swear she is trying to say mom. Bob for all we know could mean me!!!

Jason was picking up Cecelia's nine month pictures today. I'll post them online once they are mailed out. I don't want to ruin the surprise.  Hopefully she won't be 11 months already before they get in the mail.

I am starting to think about Cecelia's first birthday. We can't decide between just cake on December 10th with family or having family (extended welcome) on the weekend for dinner and cake. Since it is right smack dab in between Thanksgiving and Christmas I am sure relatives will want to combine her birthday with a holiday. I think she deserves to at least have one birthday separate. We'll see I guess. We already know what we are going to do for her 1 year photos... think they will be better than the 9 months!! Every time we get a little better.

Well, so much for a short entry. I am off to bed. Cecelia didn't wake up last night for the first night since I went back to work. I was so confused in the morning. I did my initial freak out that the monitor was broken. Don't worry. It is okay. My little bunny bear must have been tired. She just got over a cold and now I think is getting another. Man, I just want to put my child in a bubble until H1N1 passes. Ahhh...

Trick or Treat

 Posted by eitings on November 1, 2009 at 6:44 PM
Happy Halloween everyone...

Cecelia had a very eventful Halloween. She was a pumpkin this year. My principal borrowed us an outfit. She was going to be a cow (had some cow pjs) but the pumpkin was much cuter.

Jason was disappointed that we didn't really "trick or treat." He wanted some candy I guess. Cecelia had two invitations to trick or treat. One at her great grandma Lenore's house and one at her G-Ma Leslie's house. We got all dressed up and made the two stops. You will see from the videos that she had a good time and didn't mind the costume.

We can offically say that Cecelia is crawling now, although, I don't know how long it will last. She is so close to walking!!

Take a peek at the videos and pictures that will be up soon. 9 month pictures are in the mail and will be uploaded soon.


 Posted by eitings on November 2, 2009 at 9:54 PM
My bunny finally said "Mama." It was in the wee hours of the morning. I thought I was imagining it but then Jason and my mother heard it today. Yep..... she finally says "Mama!!!" It is funny but I finally feel validated. The countless hours we've spent breastfeeding (yes, she is still breastfeeding 4 times a day and I pump twice....super mom!!!!!), the numerous diapers you wish you could forget, the lack of sleep. Now, I feel like I've been paid back. That first smile, giggle, coo... they were great, but something about this.... just makes me the happiest mommy!!!!

Happy Thanksgiving 2009

 Posted by eitings on November 29, 2009 at 8:43 PM
Gobble, gobble. Our Thanksgiving was eventful as usual. The holiday week started out with Cecelia getting some sort of intestinal bug. She never spiked a fever so we know it wasn't Swine. Put the other symptoms weren't very pleasant. Lets just say, I think I passed my last initiation test into motherhood. Baby and crib full of puke at 1:00 a.m.

With a sick baby, we had a small Thanksgiving- me, Jason, Cecelia and Auntie Erica. Saturday, my mother had us over and my side of the family for our family get together. With her new job, my mother will be working weekends and holidays... so... Thanksgiving on Saturday it was. By Saturday, Cecelia was feeling a little better. Puking ceased but the surprises in the diapers continued!!

Shockingly, Jason took 0 pictures of the events of the holiday. Thursday there were no pictures because we all stayed in our pajamas all day. Saturday, he forgot to bring the camera to my mother's. Cecelia wore a cute red dress with a white cardigan that my grandma Harwell crocheted (spelling???). We will dress her up again and recreate the event.

Announcement--- Cecelia's first birthday will be Thursday, December 10th. Cake at 6 pm. Dinner will be in the crock pot for whoever wants to come. Jason has to work that night and Cecelia is in bed by 7:30 so it won't be a crazy party!!! I can't believe my little girl is turning one. It seems like yesterday we brought her home and put her under our Christmas tree. Uh oh... here comes that little frog in the back of my throat. My little girl is growing up. :) It has been exciting to see her experience the world for the first time. She couldn't be more loved!!!

Cecelia's 1st Birthday

 Posted by eitings on December 10, 2009 at 1:24 PM
I am almost at a loss for words. My little baby is turning ONE!! We are having family over today for cake and presents. I made Cecelia a carrot cupcake Elmo cake. I hope she recognizes it. I had to search the house for ingredients for decorating since I didn't feel like taking Cecelia out today. -8 right now with the wind chill. Cecelia is just getting better from yet another snotty head cold, AGAIN.

Looks like my post will be short as I hear our little birthday girl signing to herself in her crib.

My baby is one... people told me the time would go fast, but I can't believe how fast it truly went. Over this past year I have told myself to slow down, numerous times. My dad always told me that people who live their lives for the weekends... (I can't wait until Friday mentality) miss most of their lives and they are over before they started. Even though I am working and can't wait until my weekends with my Cecelia Marie, I also stop and enjoy all the other times. Our after-school times, our EARLY morning times, our in-the-middle of the night times... Any moment I have with her I feel lucky. So to you on this day, take the time slow down. Today is Thursday. Yes, that means Friday and the weekend is right around the corner. Stop, and live today to the fullest. Unfortunately, we don't know how long we have here to enjoy every day with out loved ones so make every day count.

Holiday Season 2009

 Posted by eitings on January 1, 2010 at 9:53 PM
No cruises this holiday season. No new babies this holiday season. We are attempting to get into some sort of holiday season traditions with all the new roles/changes in the family. Mom is in a new house now, we are settled as a family, let the traditions begin...

Cecelia came to see Santa at my school before Christmas. You can see from the pictures (in Nov/Dec), it didn't go so well. We did Christmas eve at my grandparents house and Christmas day at our home. We stayed in jammies the whole day. It was great.

I've had a nice time off of school and Jason took vacation so we've all been home together since Christmas Eve day. Cecelia has gotten to play with all of her new toys. So many people were so generous with their gift giving to Cecelia. I took about half of the toys and put them away in a closet. I'll bring them out in June when Cecelia is looking for something new to do.

We are relieved that Jason starts back on first shift on Monday. We don't know if it is permanent or if third shift will be back in his future, however, we are grateful for his reprieve. We literally have to live week to week not knowing if he will be working. It has taken it's toll but we are making it through. It is amazing the things you take for granted. I keep reminding myself of things to be grateful for... a beautiful daughter, health (except for a bout of torticollis that had me out of commission for a week), our home, and family who would sacrifice anything for you.

We ended our holiday season at a friends house last night for the new year and at Jason's mother's today.

I am taking a deep breath as I write this thinking about all the things I would like to get done in the next two days before Monday comes to start the year off right. I will be delighted to finish them all but satisfied to finish half of them. I'll probably only get to a quarter of them though, realistically!!!

Hope you all had a great holiday. Jason, Cecelia and I are going to hunker down until spring.


 Posted by eitings on February 21, 2010 at 7:32 PM
So every once in a while I go onto the mommy chat boards and see what other December 2008 babies are up to. A couple of weeks ago, all the mommies were bragging about how many words their babies were talking. I left the chat room. Who has time for that. I was also thinking, wow- Cecelia is only saying "all done." All the other babies were saying so many words. Since then, Cecelia has started talking up a storm. We now hear- dada, mama, all done, baby, night-night, cookie, on, all done night night, num-nums, and tickle-tickle. It is so cute.

Update- not walking yet. Guess she is really going to on her own time frame. She has started using a fork to stab and eat her food though!!! She prefers to master her fine motor skills before her gross motor!!!

Jason and I went skiing up at Cascade (just north of Madison) today. It was nice to get out. We hadn't been since our Colorado trip before I got pregnant. Just like riding a bike!!! It was fun.

Valentine's Day

 Posted by eitings on February 14, 2010 at 9:32 PM
Happy Valentine's Day. My apologies for not writing in a long time. After I posted all of the Christmas updates, we reached our maximum storage capacity for this free website. Jason and I had to decide was it worth the $4.95 a month to 1. Keep what was already on the web and 2. be able to add more. From this post you can assume we decided that yes, it was worth it to keep family and friends up-to-date with our lives....

Since I last wrote, Cecelia is growing by the week. Milestones she has reached lately include:
~ standing on her own (not taking steps yet)
~ says "All Done" as clear as a 3 year old
~ points at her books
~ can find obvious things in her books (cows, Elmo)
~ can shake yes and no when prompted
~ is popping tooth number 5
~ stacking blocks
~ understanding a lot more cause and effect with her toys
~ getting into stuff she used to ignore
~ made her first weekend trip to Wausau
~ is basically eating everything
~ has favorite toys
~ turns out the lights in her room
~ SLEEPS THROUGH THE NIGHT (7pm-7am) That was Cecelia's New Year's gift to me. Ever since the first of the year she has slept through the night (with the exception of the couple of days she was sick with a 105 degree temp). I had no idea how rested one could feel with 7 straight hours of sleep. I feel so refreshed. (Don't worry, I haven't changed that much, I still hate getting up in the morning!)

It is so wonderful to watch Cecelia explore the world at this age. Every week you can see a change in her thought process/development. For instance, yesterday Jason and I watched her push her airplane to the couch and proceed to climb up on it to get onto the couch. How dare her mommy and daddy push the stuff on the couch our of her reach. She figured out how to get around that! Every week it is something new with her.

Jason and I are fine. The job Jason is currently on ends in two weeks. We don't know if that means he will be laid off or sent to the next job. I guess we will see when the time comes. For me the third quarter of school is almost over. Hard to believe how fast time goes. Before I know it I'll be home for the summer planning swimming and zoo trips.

Slow and steady wins the race!!

 Posted by eitings on March 8, 2010 at 10:18 PM
So I think we can say Cecelia is walking now? Two days short of 15 months old. She has been flirting with taking two or three steps in between two people or to the couch (when "made" to) for the last two weeks. Today when I picked her up at the sitter's she walked 12 steps (in a row) without falling or grabbing anything. That's official!! I've uploaded walking videos. Cecelia and I tried to recreate it this evening in the livingroom. You can't get the whole picture but some proof that she is walking!!

Jason has been in Vegas. He went Sunday- Wed. this week for a photography conference. He better be having a good time. His first time in Vegas and I am not there....bloody crime!! We'll call it even if he comes home having hit the jackpot. Just kidding. He did take $1 for a million dollar slot. He said that was his limit! Probably a good idea since we will find out on Friday if he is the next casualty of a long-term layoff. I love this living week to week stuff. Makes it so easy to plan for your family financially.


 Posted by eitings on May 12, 2010 at 5:32 PM
Just wanted to update on Cecelia. In the last week or so, she has started imitating our sounds. It is so cute. She is actually trying to say what we are trying to get her to say. Doesn't come out perfectly but she can isolate and produce specific sounds on request. Cecelia can also do more tricks... no longer the days of "How big are you?" We are way past that. Cecelia can now show you where her belly, hair, ears, and nose is located!! New developmental milestones around every corner!!

The dance recital is this weekend. I am sad and excited at the same time. I did not teach this year. This was only the second year of my life, since I was three that I did not have some form of dance (taking lessons or teaching) on a weekly basis. I have no idea where I would have fit it in but I miss it dearly. Miss Barbara promises to keep the studio running forever so the Eiting's can have little babies (notice I didn't just mention little girls) dancing!!

I hope I am not about to jinx anything, but Jason has been employed as of late. Yippee!!! Still probably a little too soon to say the construction industry has turned around but we are hopeful.

20 days of school left!!!

Another Birthday- Welcome Spring

 Posted by eitings on May 1, 2010 at 12:10 AM
Posted more pictures and videos. Take a peek. Spring 2010

Well, I welcomed another birthday on Wednesday. My golden "28" that is. You officially know you are an adult when your birthday doesn't "woo" you anymore! It was nice though. Spent it with my hubby and daughter. What else could I have asked for?!?!

Cecelia is officially running (not walking) everywhere. It is so scary to watch because she always looks like she is about to do a header because she is running so fast. Silly girl. She has also started shaking her head yes and no to communicate. I don't quite know how accurate she is, says yes a lot, but it is cute none the less. She has really been enjoying being able to play outside. She loves her swing, car, sidewalk chalk, bubbles, and slide (thanks Weigels!). She is growing so fast and is SO much fun.

I have about 26 days of school left. Me counting down? Ummm, of course!! Then Cecelia and I will be free to attend lake homes, go swimming, hit the zoo, take walks, play with friends, and RELAX from our fast paced lifestyle. Nothing big going on with me. Still doing too many things at school. My new plight is getting the district involved in a training for a new computer program. I trained 70 pupil service staff members on this new program at the end of March, My new task is to create a class for 1 district credit for additional people to learn the program and all its features. Good to know if I ever get sick of this teaching thing, I could maybe work for a software company and tour the country training people on programs. For those of you who may be confused right now, yes, I am a full time elementary special education teacher. 1 day a month, I get a sub and I am 1/2 of the districts Assistive Technology Team (we handle, house, train, and evaluate for technology related items for students with disabilities). It is fun to do. Gets my name around the district and gets me learning new things as well!!

Jason has started to have sporadic work through his company. The first work from them since August. He was picked up by another company in the interim, off and on. We are crossing our fingers that the construction field may be finally starting to turn around. Don't worry, we aren't holding our breaths!! Jason's first wedding (he is shooting 9 or 10 weddings this summer/fall) is tomorrow. The bride and groom are actually the little brother of a girl I went to high school with and Erica's friend. Erica is maid of honor and Jason is shooting the wedding. I can tell Jason is proud of his photography and really loves it. I wish he could do it for a living, but that would mean MANY more weddings a year!!

I think that is about all for now. April 12 was the third anniversary of dad's death. Still feels like just yesterday. I wish he could have met my beautiful, charming daughter. I know he is smiling down on us! I hope we are making him proud. Love you Dad.

Summer has Commenced

 Posted by eitings on June 23, 2010 at 11:58 PM
Wow, it's been more than a month since I posted to the blog... seems like I just did it last week!!!

Jason has been called back to work (finally). Unfortunately, we should have been careful what we wish for. He is working 10 hour days, 7 days a week until mid July..we think. He is putting together a machine (or 8 ) that will make stuff to soak up the oil in the gulf. Needless to say, the machine being finished quickly is the task at hand.

I am officially off school for the summer. It was nice having Jason home with us as we got to spend some nice family time together. Not any longer... Cecelia and I are now trying to find our groove.

Cecelia is sure finding that little personality!! She can manipulate us to get what she wants. She is starting to put words together, "Oh no, mommy!" "Mommy, elp (help)!" "No, more." Very cute. I really think she enjoyed these last few weeks home with Jason. Today was the first day he was gone when she woke up. She walked around the house all day yelling, "Dah? Dah?" looking for him. It was cute.

We have a list of events to hopefully keep us busy this summer-  kidding pool on deck, bike rides (Jason and I both got bikes for Mother's/Father's Day and a girlfriend gave us a Burley), we have three parks within biking distance, the wading pool opens on Monday, we have a zoo pass, we like to take walks to get ice cream or go to the bank... then there is the wonderful world of bubbles, sidewalk chalk, and the swing in our tree!! Cecelia has also loved the lake and pools this summer. She has a float to sit in and she likes to be swung around. So adventurous... must get that from Jason.

We just remembered that we should probably get some 18 month photos taken. Naturally, we will do them ourselves.... we don't know what yet but I am sure they will be cute!!! (Maybe something over the 4th!)

Up at the Lake

 Posted by eitings on July 17, 2010 at 10:12 PM

Cecelia had another great weekend at the lake. She loves to play in someone else's house, go in the lake, and go on dad's boat.

The weekend started off roughly... the boat didn't start. A new starter, gear, and a mechanic who could fit us in saved the weekend!! Unfortunately, for all the work, jason caught zero fish!!!

Jason is still working, thankfully, and shooting weddings on the weekend. I am finishing some work necessary to gain adjunct professor status at Cardinal Stritch University. Cecelia is enjoying spending her summer with her mommy. She is officially attached at my hip these days! Instead of walking around the house and yelling for dada, she is yelling for mama!!! We've hit many different pools, stores, malls, farmer's markets, parks, etc!! I will be sad when the summer ends and I am back to school.

Last weekend Cecelia had her first overnight sleepover at G-ma's house by herself. I had a wedding of a friend and jason was shooting a wedding out to town. So, to G-ma's Cecelia went. I don't know who had more fun, G-ma or Cecelia??

Nothing much new going on. Cecelia has started imitating our words on demand and started making animal noises. See the video of her in the boat i posted to see them!!

She gets more and more fun every day. See all the new spring 2010 and summer 2010 videos I posted!! I'll get the 18 months pics up too!!

Where Did the Summer Go? Cecelia 20 Months Today

 Posted by eitings on August 10, 2010 at 11:47 PM
I have to set my alarm tonight. I have to go to school tomorrow! Others may not need to worry as they know their child will wake them up at the crack of dawn.... not my little angel. She is just like her mother. She slept until 8:15 today and 9:00 yesterday. I know, crazy. I am only back to school two days this week, 2 half days next week, and 3 days the following week. Then starting 8/30 I am back full time. Poor Cecelia is up for a rude awakening. Although, she may enjoy going to play with the kids. Maybe she won't miss me as much as I will miss her!!
We went to Jellystone Camp Ground in Caledonia today when Jason got home from work. It was nice. Cecelia got to take a full nap, daddy got to come with us, the sun was on the backside of the day, and it wasn't very crowded on a Tuesday afternoon. We stopped and picked up Subway on the way there at took a break when we got hungry for dinner. We were there once before and Cecelia was apprehensive regarding the kiddie pool (go figure) and the slides/sprinklers. She always loves the big pool. This time she was still apprehensive of the kiddie pool and the sprinklers but she LOVED the water slides. I am talking big kid/adult water slides. I am posting a video (when I get a chance) of her going down. It is too cute!!
We've got a busy end of August ahead of us. Jason is working (thankfully) he also has two weddings and and engagement session to shoot by 8/27. We are taking Cecelia to a Brewers' Game, going to another with friends, hoping to get up to Oshkosh one more time, I have my days here and there working, mom's birthday, painting mom's bathroom for her birthday... There is one more thing that will be consuming my time... I have become obsessed with digital scrapbooking!! I mean obsessed. Jason already had Adobe Photoshop so it was just sitting there begging me to learn! Well, I am now deep enough to get into trouble. I haven't started scrapbook anything regarding to Cecelia yet. I always thought that I would walk away from old school scrapbooking. It was so expensive, time consuming, and inconvenient. With digital pics, whenever I sat down to scrapbook, I didn't have any pics to do it with. Digital scrapbooking eliminates all that. Cheap (you can find a lot of free downloads online), quick, not messy, and all my pics are at my fingertips!! So may miss being able to add real items to scrapbook pages. I can't start collecting all that stuff. Instead, I'll take a picture of it and digiscrap it! And if the end of August wasn't busy enough I still have to fit in a weekly chiropractor and a cake decorating class I am taking! (Adding it to my repertoire.
Jason has been working, shooting weddings, and spending the left over time with Cecelia.
Cecelia is talking up a storm. She can pretty much mimic anything we say (1 word at a time) and has started initiating words- example, she tugged on the bathroom door today and said "potty." No she isn't potty training but we got her a potty and she sits on it once in a while. We are waiting for a success...... but not pushing it. She is only 20 months for heaven's sake!


 Posted by eitings on October 24, 2010 at 11:25 PM

October has had to be one of the busiest months ever. Between parent/teacher conferences three nights until 7:30, my cake class Mondays 6:30-8:30, Jason's masters class every Thursday, the class I am teaching for Cardinal Stritch, and Jason's photography schedule (oh and not to forget they switched Jason to 2nd shift at work which has really thrown a monkey wrench in everything) I just don't know which end is up.

I hate not being home at night to put Cecelia to bed. Erica has been helping out a lot. It is so nice when someone else knows the routine. I don't want Cecelia to suffer from our schedules... I figures, the routine is the comfort. Mommy, Daddy, G-Ma, or Erica... whoever it is putting Cecelia to bed, the routine is her security. She likes the reading lamp on and to read 3 books. She likes the bedroom door closed. When done reading the book light goes off and music goes on. She likes to cuddle for a bit and then go to sleep on her Dora pillow. Mobile on, music on, air kisses, eskimo kisses, and some "I love yous" and bedtime is finally over.

I have to go to camp with the 5th graders this year. Nov 1-3rd. There are some of my kids with physical disabilities and behavioral disabilities attending so I am going. Yippee! Yet, three more nights I won't be able to but my bunny to bed. :(

On a separate note, Jason is booking quickly for next summer's wedding season. I think June is full...

I posted some pictures in Fall 2010 and some videos in Fall/Winter 2010. I've started putting videos together in iMovie to gather multiple clips into one longer video to post which ultimately means less uploading to YouTube and more to post here but it adds an additional step of producing the videos and uploading from iMovie to YouTube then linking within webs.com. Sound easy, right?? Long story short, my apologies for not keeping videos up to date. I will try to do better. I have movies uploading to Youtube as I write. I will get those up this week.

5 year

 Posted by eitings on October 4, 2010 at 11:24 PM
I posted yesterday and completely forgot to mention Jason and I just celebrated our 5 year anniversary. 10/01/05.... so, on Friday we went out to eat at Ryan Braun's Steakhouse. Good, however, nothing compares to Sabor! After we went to a local establishment for an adult beverage or two!

On Saturday after dinner we shared the last of our wedding chocolate with Cecelia (her first chocolate!). For those who don't know, we didn't have a wedding cake, we had a chocolate fountain...yummmy! The "man" who came with the fountain (we called him Charlie...Charlie and the Chocolate Factory- get it??) filled some heart molds prior to cleaning up the fountain. We've been carving chocolate off of them for the last 5 years on our anniversary and dipping yummies into it. This year we finally finished the chocolate. It tasted like the freezer a bit so it was probably a good thing that we finished it.

We got jewelry for our anniversary as well. I got a ring with 13 little diamonds in it. We took three of the diamonds out and substituted a stone for October (our anniversary), a stone for December (Cecelia's birthday) and a stone for September (my dad's birthday). When the next child comes we will add their birthstone and a stone for November for Jason's birthday. Jason go two tie clips so he looks smashing when he shoots wedding. We had his initials engraved into on of them!

That was it... we blinked an another year passed....


 Posted by eitings on October 3, 2010 at 10:54 PM

It seems like I just blinked and a month of school went by. All of a sudden we are getting out the Halloween decorations and starting the fall baking/canning season. For the summer canning season I canned- 6 qts and 12 pints of pickles (dill and bread and butter), 4 qts and 10 pints of tomato sauce, 1 qt of jalapanos and.... I think that was it. We just blanched and froze 3 1/2 lbs of snap peas from the farmers market. I think I'll get another 3 lbs of snap peas and about 6 lbs of green beans next time I go. On the agenda for this weekend is apples....apple pies, apple crisp and apple sauce. I would like to get about 12 qts of apple sauce... I wonder how many apples that will take.

Jason is working. The wedding season has wrapped up for the most part. We are hopeful he keeps doing this electrical thing through the winter months. We start to get nervous around this time wondering if he will be working this winter.

Cecelia is talking up a storm. She is repeating the last word of all of our sentences and starting to put two words together to express her wants. Cecelia is back at the sitters. She loves it there. When we pull into Linda's driveway, Cecelia screams "play" from the backseat. When we come home I ask her what she did all day. She says "play." Then I ask her what she played, she says "house." It is so cute. Not only is she talking up a storm, she seems to think that she can make her own decision and has picked up the word and idea of "mine" and "by self." Toys, walking down the stairs, eating, books... everything is on her own terms. I have no idea where she gets that from!!

I'll updates pictures before I sign off for the night. We have some good videos too but I till need to upload them to Youtube before I can link them to the site. That will be a while.


 Posted by eitings on November 7, 2010 at 11:17 PM
Jason turns 30 on Tuesday.... WOW! It feels like yesterday we were teenagers going to see Titanic. To think that we will be sharing our 14th Christmas together is crazy. I think we are now technically adults? Sometimes it feels like we are, other times it doesn't. Something tells me, full time jobs, homeowners, and parents makes us meet the definition of adults..

We had a birthday party scheduled for Jason over Halloween weekend. Then he got switched to second shift so we cancelled his party instead of continuing to have it in his absence!! We don't have anything rescheduled. We couldn't. We had no idea what, where and when Jason would be working. The last thing we wanted to happen was for everyone to rearrange their plans to come to party #2 and then we would have had to cancel again. So, I think Jason and I will be going to Bennihana's on Tuesday. If things pan out and we can find a sitter we may hit downtown this weekend to celebrate. Jason is saving up money (photography, birthday, christmas, etc) for lenses and photography equipment for his birthday and Christmas. Instead of giving him money to put towards his next purchase, Cecelia and I decided to be sneaky... we contacted his photography partner, Emily, for tips on what to get. She said that Jason was coveting this special bag when he was in Las Vegas for WPPI last February. Cecelia and I got that for Jason. It is a special bag that he can wear while shooting weddings so he has everything he needs with him and doesn't have to carry anything. It made him happy, that was all that mattered. As an extra special treat "for J's birthday" we are going to fly me out to Vegas in February when he attends WPPI again. He will be there over a long weekend and we are going to make a mini vacation out of it. I can't decide which show to go see but I guess I should leave it up to Jason since it is his b-day present. I've never been to Vegas. I am sure we will have a good time. We need to get away. We really haven't gone anywhere or done anything since I was pregnant. It will be good for us to get away. Even if it is only for the weekend!!

Off to start another week. More pics and videos are posted. Enjoy.


 Posted by eitings on November 16, 2010 at 9:27 PM
Two blog posts in one month. I know what you are thinking, Natalie must have a lot of free time lately. You couldn't be more wrong. I had to take a second to incapsulate Cecelia and what she is doing right now.

She is 23 months now, 3 weeks shy of her 2nd birthday. Wow, I can't believe she is almost two.....

He speech has gotten so cute lately. She is the most well mannered toddler I have met in a long time (I may be a little biased!). The following is a list of the words/phrases that she uses unprompted in the appropriate settings: thank you, please, no thank you, you're welcome, and bless you. Too cute!  :)

Her new phrases this week are: fill it up (in reference to her milk cup), here you go (when feeding up pretend food from her play kitchen), yes Dada, al-righty then, --- there are more, I am just hitting a road block right now!

She is also reading her own books, kind of. She has so many of her books memorized- The Ear Book, The Foot Book, I'll Teach My Dog a Lot of Words, Pajama Time, and  Hop on Pop to name a few. She recites them as she plays. If you hear her going "Pop, pop, pop," she is reciting lines from The Ear Book. It is so adorable.

Lastly, she is coming out with words we didn't know she knew. Example- I bought Jason and me a bag of holiday Oreos. Cecelia has never had a cookie- at least not from Jason or me. We've called crackers cookies for 2 years now. Last night, I got out the Oreos (no we don't buy the all the time- they were just a treat!) and proceeded to dunk them into milk after I finished my dinner. Well, a little 23 month old next to me shouted, "Oreo!!!" Where she got the word, we have no idea. Someone has been indulging her!!

Merry Christmas

 Posted by eitings on December 25, 2010 at 11:10 AM
Well, the highlight of this Christmas morning for Cecelia has been playing with the $.50 wind up Santa and the empty boxes. Of everything Santa brought, those are her favorites. She has a limited time with her toys, if she only knew. Since her birthday was just two weeks ago, little does she know that when she goes to bed, all the great gifts Santa brought her are going to disappear to be brought back at a later date when she is sick (not playing) with her current stash of new toys. That is the one crummy thing about having a birthday in December.

Instead of hitting  a grocery store yesterday to get the last minute odds and ends for my family to come over today for dinner, I decided a nap was necessary. Therefore, I need to go find an open store. You think if they aren't answering the phone, they are closed??? We will see!


 Posted by eitings on December 10, 2010 at 11:07 PM
The kitchen is a mess, the cake is gone, there are heaps of gifts and trash on the floor.... evidence of a birthday party that went as quickly as it came. The house is quiet. Jason works tomorrow. A tuckered out little girl finally fell asleep. I am sitting here in the calm after the storm thinking about what I was doing two years ago today. Sitting in the hospital, rocking a new little girls that was soon to become the center of my universe.

Things Cecelia has taught me in the last two years:
1. Patience
2. You really don't need a whole lot of sleep to function (notice I didn't mention the quality of the functioning).
3. innocence
4. joy
5. unconditional love
6. pee and poop doesn't burn skin like hot lava! :/
7. quality of time, not quantity of time
8. delegation
9. perseverance- nursed for 21 months
10. time management
11. incompetence
12. problem solving

I feel like I literally blinked and two years went by. It is scary for life to go by so quickly. I just need to take a deep breath and think of all the diapers we've changed in the last two years, all the kisses given (and now received), all the books read, all the hours spent rocking, cuddling, comforting, all the songs sung, all the night time routines, all the times I've swept thrown food off the floor, all the sippy cups washed, etc.

I may have written this before but I"ll write it again... I remember my dad telling me one time that people who live their lives for the weekend, the "I can't wait until Friday." or  "Oh man, it's Monday" people, speed through life. I often catch myself doing this. I think in part it is because I do have to work and I see the weekends more as time for me to be a mommy. The week days are spent in such a routine fashion- get up, drop at sitter, go to work, pick up, make dinner, play, read books, go to bed- sometimes I feel more like a caretaker than a mommy. I try to tell myself to find the joy and quality time whenever I can, whether it be on a Wednesday night or a Saturday afternoon.

An added complication to this is being a teacher. Now I sometimes feel like its a race to June. Until I can be "mommy" again. I think Jason and I need to slow down and find time to enjoy our little family- before it gets any bigger- no, no announcements!   We have a couple vacations planned in the next few months. Nothing big but very much needed. We HAVE to get out of the daily grind or I am going to blink again and I'll be writing Cecelia's 3rd birthday post. Some of those vacations include a trip to the Dells, a trip to see a girlfriend in Wausau, Jason and I are going to Vegas in February, a skiing trip in March, and who knows what else. I am sure you will hear about them in future posts.

Wow, I don't really know where that all came from. I think the "Oh my god, my baby is two" depression sunk in for a bit. It'll lift by morning when my little girl says something so cute all I can do is admire this little creature we created and nurtured! We "done" good!!

December 10, 2010- Happy birthday to the most loved little girl in the world.

 Posted by eitings on December 1, 2010 at 12:09 AM
Just wanted to write a quick note about Cecelia's songs. Cecelia has started singing. In her repertoire are the following:

ABC Song- "a, b, c, d, e, f, t, u, v, w, x, y, z!"

Twinkle, Twinkle- "winkle, winkle, star, up, above high, like diamond, in sky"

Happy Birthday to You- "habba berday you, habba berday you, habba berday you, habba berday you"

Too cute. I'll try to get it on video.

Happy 2011

 Posted by eitings on January 1, 2011 at 1:10 AM
What can I say... 2010 came as fast as it went. Happy New Year everyone. We spent the night at some friend's. We were home, Cecelia in bed, for the ball to drop. 2011.... what will this year bring?? New year's resolutions.... 1. forgive 2. love 3. treasure quality time 4. finally lose the baby weight! 5. fix my hips/joints so we can get pregnant again. 6. get more than 6 hours of sleep a night!

Hoping this new year find you happy, healthy and with loved ones.

Continual Super Bowl Cheer

 Posted by eitings on February 13, 2011 at 7:41 PM
Had to post these... don't really have words. All I can say is that someone's husband spend hours outside in the 2 degree weather (- windchill) to construct. It was 40 degrees out this weekend, so it didn't last long. Nor was there time to take any video or pictures in the daylight. This was all we got!!


Go Pack Go

 Posted by eitings on February 7, 2011 at 12:01 AM
Go Pack Go!!

Yep. Superbowl Champions.... house was rocking in celebration tonight as Erica, Jason and I couldn't be vocal since Cecelia was sleeping. We replaced screams of joy with interesting dance moves!! It was fun.

Jason of course had to immediately make purchases on nfl.com. I've been joking that people still wear the 97 Superbowl t-shirts... now they have a new set of apparel to wear for the next decade!

Here is a little video to enjoy. It is Cecelia cheering on the Packers. After this video (during the star spangled banner) Cecelia put on her Packer jammies and cheered until half time with her daddy. Her favorite cheering phrases are "Come on guys!" "Go Pack Go!" and Ooooooooooo!" as she swings Jason's Title Towel around! Yes, she thanks Jason after he gives her his title towel in the video.

Video link

Cecelia Loves Books

 Posted by eitings on January 29, 2011 at 11:46 PM
Cecelia has toys, more toys than any toddler could ever use; however, she always seems to gravitate towards books. Could be because I've been reading books to her since she was born or she just likes them! She has her phases of favorite books. We consider them her favorites when she has them memorized. She likes to sit in her room and read books on the foot stool. As you will see from the video linked below(click on the blue), she likes to do them herself!!

Cecelia Reading

She is getting to be such a big girl.
~She is counting now to about 17 (but she misses 4, 5 and 14, and 15) every time. We are working on that.
~Cecelia can do segments of the ABCs but not the whole thing from start to finish.
~She is starting to identify letters... her fav is "R"

We went in for her 2 year appt this week. She is now in the 97th percentile for height and the 90th percentile for weight. She has almost officially grown out of all of her 2T clothes. She was able to wear them for about 2 months. 3T, here we come. I have to go to Boston Store and get yet another wardrobe for her.

My favorite development of late has to be with her speech. In the last few weeks we have been able to have almost conversations. Her receptive language skills have grown as well. She is following many one step directions and even is able to clean up all her toys and follow directions as to where everything goes.

Every day is so exciting. She amazes us all the time. Jason and I love that little girl to pieces.

Weekend in the Dells

 Posted by eitings on January 24, 2011 at 10:23 PM
"More slide please!" That is the sentence Cecelia said most this weekend. We just got back from a long weekend in the Dells. We stayed at Mt. Olympus. It was nice. Hotel room had wood floors---I couldn't have loved it enough. I was able to take my shoes off and didn't have to silent cringe when Cecelia sat on the floor!! Yep, germ-a-phobe! I think I was a closet germ-a-phobe until I had a child. Then, my phobia came screaming out of the closet. Hotel rooms are the worst. But this one was nice.

Cecelia loved the big pool and going down the slides in the kiddie land. She also loved watching the lights in the arcade and went on her first ride (other than the train and carousel at the zoo)- the tea cups. NO, mommy did not go with. I watched from the sidelines with Auntie Erica and we tried to keep in our lunch after watching the kids spin those suckers like there was no tomorrow. I couldn't believe them. Cecelia liked it.... but didn't ask to go again. Baby steps with rides is JUST fine!

We took Auntie Erica with us because Jason and I were going to get away for the day on Sunday to ski. But then the Packers advanced- to play on Sunday- and the high temperature was 10 degrees. Um, no thanks. Not conducive for me to enjoy myself. Jason ended up meeting some friends on Saturday at Devil's Head and made it through the cold temps... not cold for him. This the man who shovels snow in shorts!

We had a great time. Erica and Jason did make fun of me for bringing a crock pot. But they sure devoured the beef tips I made in the crock pot while Jason was skiing and the girls were at the water park. No getting dressed and going out in the cold for us!!

Unfortunately, we didn't take any pictures... I know, no pictures.... or video. We were never around our stuff at the water park and didn't want anything to get stolen... so, sorry, no pics.

Below are some pictures from sledding in the front yard. Cecelia still likes her swing more. I am working on some video but don't like how the ratio is turning out since I shot the vids on my ipod. I'll get it figured out soon. Sledding is a daddy and Cecelia activity. Mommy waits with hot chocolate- Cecelia's new favorite beverage!

January 2011- sorry they are grainy... taken on ipod.

Summer 2011

 Posted by eitings on July 9, 2011 at 3:13 PM

Jason has had a busy summer shooting weddings. This has kind of killed our routine summer weekends of taking the boat out. It's been okay, I guess. He really likes what he is doing so that is good!!

Cecelia and I are having a great time together. Every day we go on an adventure. We've been to the museum, Zoo class, Zoo, library, pond to fish and see the ducks, playground, swimming at a friend's pool, shopping, to G-Ma's house, farmer's market, and Papoo's lake. She is my little buddy, however, I have a feeling she will be in for a rude awakening come September.
I am being a mommy this summer but still doing some other stuff. I am taking some credits including a 4 day digital media conference at the Art Museum http://mdmc2011.wikispaces.com/ I am also teaching a two day technology course in a neighboring school district as a private consultant. So, keeping busy!!
We are concluding a half of week at my grandparents house on Lake Winnebago and Cecelia and I are leaving for Wausau on Friday to visit a college friend who is expecting.
Needless to say, we are keeping very busy! Enjoying every beautiful summer day.

Finger paints are so much fun!!

Family News!!

 Posted by eitings on June 16, 2011 at 12:04 AM


 Posted by eitings on July 18, 2011 at 5:38 PM
Cecelia and I took a road trip this weekend to Wausau to see a friend from college and attend her baby shower. Three plus hours in the car with a toddler is no small feat. To prepare we stopped at the library and checked out some new videos. All hail the built in dvd player. Kids these days have no idea! If you've been reading my blog, you also know that we are still in the middle of potty training... this added a little apprehension for mommy on the trip.

Stats for the trip up....

~ 1 potty stop
~ 2 false alarm potty stops (someone learned if they said they had to go potty, they got our out of the carseat!)
~16 kagillion requests to switch videos
~ 1 gas stop forgetting to turn off car.... damn pregnancy brain
~ 1 evasive maneuver from the jackhole behind me who almost rear-ended us when traffic slowed. Thank goodness for the shoulder!
~ 1 detour
~ amount of snacks left upon arrival = nadda
~ total travel time= 3 hrs 45 minutes (45 minutes more than anticipated)

Cecelia and I had a great time while in Wausau. We got to attend two parties, swam, shopped, had ice cream, took great naps, and had great time with old friends.

Like everything, all good times eventually come to an end...

Stats for trip home...
~ 1 false alarm potty stop (see picture below)
~ times same Dora video watched= 6
~ successful gassing up... I turned the car off this time
~ lunch in Lomira
~ little punk who finally fell asleep 5 minutes from home= Cecelia
~ total travel time= 4 hrs 10 minutes (70 minutes longer than anticipated)

Thankfully, Jason was home when we got home to unpack the car. Shlepping all that crap is exhausting. I missed my pack mule!

Love you lots Melissa, Brandon and Baby Murphy

Joys of Potty Training

 Posted by eitings on July 10, 2011 at 11:55 AM
It was a rainy week in June, Cecelia and I were bored. All we wanted to do was hit the pool but the clouds didn't allow us to. So what did we do? Started potty training. I decided to just play with it for a day. Put big girl undies on Cecelia and headed out to the deck for a couple of hours. Playtime resulted in one accident and no successes. I had to leave for a meeting and Jason resumed duty. While on watch, Jason had 4 or 5 successes.... Mommies do all the work. Daddies get all the glory!!
The fun continued for a week. Gummy rewards for every success. Very minimal accidents.
Highlights since.... Finally a #2 in the potty, promptly rewarded with a fish. Two fish actually which Cecelia named Fish 1 and Fish 2. Her favorite movie of late is The Cat in the Hat. For those not up on children's literature, The Cat in the Hat is the one with Thing 2 and Thing 1! The great joy of a #2 in the potty has only been recreated one more time since. Other wonders have included poop bouncing out of her undies, bouncing off of my foot and landing on the kitchen floor. Poop filled undies. Poop under mommy's nails and other places I won't mention after digging poop out of crevices on training potty.
Over all I consider this an easy, rewarding potty training experience. Positive highlights have included telling mommy she had to use potty at Zoo on day 4 of potty training and making it as we ran to fish house. Making the sprint through Walmart to get to the potty. Using a port-o-potty in the dark at the fireworks. Staying dry for long periods of time. !!!

below, Cecelia using potty at Aunt Laurie and Uncle Bill's lake!


 Posted by eitings on July 9, 2011 at 8:13 PM
Apparently Daddy has a new fishing buddy.. who also likes to drive the boat.
Not this day but the following day, after 30 minutes on the water Cecelia caught her very first fish. A perch. It was the first time she had real bait on her pole. We had been leaving the plastic fish that came with the pole. She didn't care. This is quite comical because Jason was fishing for 7 hours that day and only caught one perch and 3 sheepsheads!!
July 2011- Ronnie and Lenore's Lake- Cecelia 31 months

Summer Recap

 Posted by eitings on August 26, 2011 at 5:00 AM
Today is my last day off for the summer.... boo hoo hoo!! I know some of you have no sympathy as you work year round, however, working and being a mommy .... sucks major donkey balls. I know I've got a pretty good gig with my time off; however, it doesn't make it any easier to go back.

My goal for the summer was to stay as busy as possible doing as many "fun" things as Cecelia and I could squeeze in. I didn't want the summer to fly by and all we had accomplished was staying at home and playing. There are still a few things left on my list to accomplish, reds are complete!Hopefully we can get to them by fall!!
1. Zoo
2. Museum
3. Apple Hollar
4. Open Gym
5. Library
6. Zoo Classes
7. Dance Intensives
8. Swim Lessons (no need- she's a fish!)
9. Camp Fire with s’mores
10. Hoyt
11. Baking
12. Farmer’s Market
13. Picnics
14. Ducks at Pond
15. Camping in backyard
16. Yogi Bear
17. Catch lightening bugs
18. Boerner
19. Art Museum
20. Saveland Pool
21. Play dates
22. Mall with lunch
23. Play outside- rice table, water table, sandbox, sprinkler
24. Chalk
25. Ride bikes
26. Playground
27. Pools
28. Fishing at Pond/Daddy’s boat
29. Brewers Game
30. State Fair
31. Cook outs
32. Marcus $2 10am movies
33. Bayshore Fountains
34. Chill on Hill
35. Outside concerts
36. Wausau trip
37. Papoo and Grandma Nor’s lake
38. Boat Rides

Growing Up

 Posted by eitings on August 23, 2011 at 9:05 AM
My little girls is not so little anymore. Not only is she 2 1/2 and too tall for her 3T dresses (sometimes we can see London and France!) but she doesn't fit into her pack n play traveling anymore, comfortably. How Jason and I have a child in the 97th percentile for height still, we will never know?!!

Our big girl has started big sister training. Ultimately, she will be in a different bedroom (computer room after Jason and I finally clean it out!) in a big girl bed. She'll move into our daybed. To start the prep, we took her rail off of her crib- her crib convert into a toddler bed. We also bought a rail, that will transition with her into her big girl day bed. I was a bit apprehensive about taking the plunge out of the cage... i mean crib, but overall it went fine. We (I) instituted a routine with clear expectations of no toys in her bed and once she is in bed, no getting out. So far, so good.

Here are some pics of her first time in her "big girl bed." I am hoping to have her in her new room by mid fall. We are at my grandparents' lake this weekend and she slept in a real twin bed (with a rail). Not too shabby kiddo (other than the three hours you were up from 4 to 7 this morning before heading back to bed until 10 with mommy and daddy... man, need to start getting back on to a work schedule soon. August 29th will be a rude awakening for both Cecelia and me!

Jason's Garden

 Posted by eitings on August 22, 2011 at 2:55 PM
Cecelia helps Jason harvest the garden. Here are some pics. I love that she has on her rain boots. I am waiting with baited breath to start processing tomatoes... soon!! Right now we have cucumbers coming out of our ears. Maybe time for some more refrigerator pickles (see Cucumber Season 2011 Blog Post).

Picture is a bit blurry... sorry. I think I took it on my ipod!  August 2011

Bay Beach

 Posted by eitings on August 21, 2011 at 2:25 PM
Cecelia had her first visit to an amusement park at the beginning of August. We took a trip up to Green Bay/Shawano to see a friend, Jason's grandparents, and Jason had an engagement shoot for a wedding he is shooting in October up in Green Bay.

While we were up we decided to take Cecelia to Bay Beach. For those who don't know, Bay Beach's tickets are up to $0.25 a piece these days.... steep, right? Kidding. But they were a dime when we were kids. Let's just say $5.00 in tickets kept Cecelia busy for three hours!!

Here's a picture to share. See the Bay Beach Album in the Photo Gallery for more.  I'll get some video up soon.
The little ones in the back are a girlfriend from college's little ones. They live in Wausaukee. We met them for the day. It was great to see them!

Aug 5, 2011

Cucumber Season 2011

 Posted by eitings on August 12, 2011 at 3:25 PM
Jason has started harvesting cucumbers from the garden. The first harvest was about 20 regular sized cucumber and about eight 24 inch crooked cucumbers. I've given many away, eaten many and made refrigerator pickles out of the crooked ones. Canning season is in full swing. I am thinking I will be adding peaches to this year's stock. I have a favorite lady at the farmer's market I attend every week that drives up to Michigan to get peaches and blueberries. The peaches are the best I've ever had.
If anyone has any great ideas on what to do with the cucumbers Jason pulls in next week, please let me know.

Refrigerator Pickles

Time Flies

 Posted by eitings on October 20, 2011 at 11:50 PM
It's almost Halloween... i can't believe it. It seems as though I just went back to school yesterday and it's almost a quarter over. That also means that this baby is coming sooner than later and my list of to dos is getting smaller but not fast enough.... I'll get there. I always do.
For those looking for a pregnancy update, I'll give a little now. My body is starting to give out. Maternity clothes are getting too small (they must be shrinking!!), doc yells at me every visit for the numbers on the scale, heartburn has returned with a vengeance, i am always starting... you know, typical preggo symptoms.
I get really good at hiding from the camera when I am pregnant. Some women capture their "glow" on film on purpose, I try to hide from it. Probably all related to a negative body image made worse.... but I seem to show up in pics here and there. This is just for those of you out of town, in case you are curious. These are from a few weeks ago (probably around 27 weeds). I swear i've doubled in size since then. At least the feet and knees getting rammed into my rib cage are telling me the peanut is ginormous right now!!

Enjoy, as I cringe...

Cecelia 2 1/2 year pics

 Posted by eitings on September 5, 2011 at 11:30 AM
Jason and I did yet another photo shoot with Cecelia in August. We are calling them her 2 1/2 year pictures but she was really 2 years and 7 months (August 2011). We went down the road to the Oak Creek Historical Society. Jason shot them. The dress Cecelia is wearing was given to my grandmother (dad's mother) when she was that small. All the girls in our family have worn it (when it fit) for pictures - Me, Erica, cousin Brooke, and cousin Taylor. Cecelia now joins the ranks! If only pictures are digital from when we were kids, I would post them all for you to see.

I'll post a pic here but to see the entire album, go to the photo gallery. Album is titled- Cecelia 2 1/2.


 Posted by eitings on December 17, 2011 at 10:30 AM
Halloween came and went. Cecelia was a penguin this year. It was an easy costume to make. I found it online. It was just foam pieces strung through a bow tie over a black sweat suit. How easy and Wisconsin weather appropriate.... it poured rain for trick-or-treating this year.
Halloween weekend (Teachers' Convention) we went to Green Bay (Thurs-Sun) and sayed at the Tundra Lodge. Jason had a wedding in Green Bay to shoot on Saturday. We spent 4 long days at the water park--- me, the beached whale in a maternity swim suit that barely fit!!). We also had Jason's grandparents from Green Bay (dad's parent) stop by for a bit. We only get to see them a couple of times a year so it was nice they stopped by. Cecelia LOVED the water park. She has really turned into a little fish with no fear. I'll attach some videos for you to see!!
Pictures in the Fall 2011 photo album.

Big Girl Bed

 Posted by eitings on October 23, 2011 at 1:45 PM
Cecelia started sleeping in her big girl bed at the end of summer. Once Jason and I finally finished her new room (i'll get pics of it on soon...) we moved her on over. She now is in the computer room with my childhood daybed and jason's childhood dressers. Overall, the work to get that room cleaned out (computer room aka dumping ground for anything that didn't have a home) took forever but I am glad we tackled it. It gave us the opportunity to go through and rearrange the house. I also opened up a new location to store all her toys and then they don't have to be in our living space considering our living room is our den, family room, tv room, playroom, all in one!! The baby will then take over Cecelia's old room. The plan meant no moving furniture just stuff. Of course I found time to include a few projects into Cecelia's new room. Dora duvet cover and curtains to match. An art hanging wall and a home made lamp shade to match. You didn't think I wouldn't put my Martha flare on her new room, did you!! I'll get pics of those up for you to see. For now, here is a pic of Cecelia's first night in her new big girl bed... it was the easiest transition ever. She never for one minute thought she could get out of her bed!! My good little girl!!

Dance Class

 Posted by eitings on October 23, 2011 at 1:30 PM
Cecelia started dance class at Arabesque in September. Arabesque is my childhood studio where I danced from three until I went away to college and then came back and taught at until I gave birth to Cecelia. I always intended on going back to teach, but there just aren't enough hours in the day or days in the week to get everything I would like accomplished.

Cecelia is still shy of three years old so I was anxious about how dance class would go. I knew she would have some separation anxiety but knew after a few classes she would learn the routine and be fine. It's gone pretty much as expected!!

She now really looks forward to dance class and it makes a nice little Thursday for us. I pick her up from the sitter and we head across town, stop for dinner at Panera (Cecelia's favorite) and then head to class. She now goes in by herself, sings, dances, and enjoys her time there. She gets a stamp on her hand if she does a good job and is very proud of her stamp until it washes off. She bourees and passe around the house all the time and sings the songs from dance! I am so glad we decided to enroll her this year.

Here are some pics, of course we have pictures to capture the first dance class. There are more in a picture folder in the picture gallery.

Cecelia is THREE

 Posted by eitings on December 17, 2011 at 11:55 AM
My little girl is THREE!!! Holy Cow!
A birthday is marked by many events...
First event was the annual photo-shoot. This year's photo-shoot took place... yep, in our livingroom. Jason built a backdrop (with a little crafty help from his wife!) It is so nice not having to pack up the child, pray they cooperate and trust the stranger taking the pics can capture what you are expecting. Nope. None of that... a couple of M&M bribes and voila... three year old pictures. We included a couple of pictures on our Christmas card. We will send pictures to family after the baby comes in one package.
Next, Cecelia got to decorate cupcakes for her friends at daycare. I made and frosted cupcakes while making her cake. Cecelia got to spray paint them (edible paint) pink and orange and put three royal icing dots (made my mommy) on each cupcake. She could barely contain herself while decorating. Below is a picture of her little birthday party at daycare. Thanks Aunti Linda!

Finally, we had family over for cake on her birthday. Cecelia actually got it this year. She loved blowing out her candles, eating her cake and opening her presents!! Don't quite think she appreciated the time her mommy put into her cake, but I'll get over it!! She has since fallen in love with a new baby and new nursery set she received as a gift. Good thing since that is going to be the new trend around here soon!! Below is Cecelia. She pulled her rocker up to her baby and is reading to it.

Too bad she has to wait another year to have that much fun again... Wait, what am I talking about. The season has just started. This kid has to make it through Christmas too!!
Tons of pictures in photo album.

Thanksgiving 2011/ Pinterest.com

 Posted by eitings on December 17, 2011 at 11:15 AM
We had Thanksgiving this year at mom's house. It was also Papoo's (mom's father) 80th birthday. Pictures are in the Fall 2011 photo album. I made the desserts this year. I decided to try something new. For those of you who haven't heard about pinterest.com it is my new favorite obsession. It is basically a social networking for booking great ideas online. I have albums for recipes, toddler ideas, photography ideas, being green ideas, etc. It is a  great way to share great ideas. Below are links to the recipes I made for Thanksgiving that I found on pinterest.com. Thanks to whoever found the links first!!
Tasty Treat in a Mason Jar
Cherry Creamcheese Tart
They were both a big hit. Yummy!!!
Happy Birthday Papoo!

Christmas 2011

 Posted by eitings on December 27, 2011 at 12:20 AM
Christmas 2011 and still no baby...bittersweet.
I really don't want to be pregnant anymore, yet we don't want baby number 2 to have to share a birthday season with Christmas..... the wait continues.
For Christmas this year we did Christmas Eve at my mother's. Santa came Christmas morning and Christmas night was at my grandmother's. As usual, Santa was very good to Cecelia and even brought her baby brother gifts. I guess we will be waiting to open baby brother's gifts until he arrives...
Cecelia now has Christmas songs in her linty of songs. It is so cute. Her current favorites are "Jingle Bells" and "Frosty the Red Nosed Reindeer!!" She'll get it straight by next year I am sure!!
Sitting on Santa was a no go this year. Cecelia came to school with me for Breakfast with Santa and we only got about 20 feet away before she grabbed on for life. I felt this year she was so much more aware that I couldn't force her to sit on his lap for the annual screaming photograph. Somehow, I felt she would hold it against me for the rest of her life!! So, no Santa picture this year! Here is a picture or two. There are more in the Christmas 2011 album. We didn't get a picture in front of our tree looking all snazzy this year. Crap!! I guess we were supposed to wait until this little boy joins the family before taking a picture!!
Below- Cecelia leaving reindeer food on Christmas Eve!!

An Elf...

 Posted by eitings on December 18, 2011 at 12:10 AM
Are you familiar with Elf on a Shelf?? It is a children's story that has an Elf that you put in your house. Every night the elf goes to report to Santa and comes back in the morning in a new place for the family to find. Our Elf was nameless for a while... surprise, surprise. The three year old couldn't commit to a name. Really, she wanted to call him "Daddy." We didn't think that was appropriate. It took a bit but Cecelia named him Sprinkles. Sprinkles has been a bit daring lately. Linked below is a photo project I've been posting on Facebook... crazy Elf!
Cecelia gets extremely excited to find Sprinkles every morning. I hope she is okay when Sprinkles returns to the North Pole until next year on Christmas eve.... we shall see!

Welcome Coletyn Thomas

 Posted by eitings on January 14, 2012 at 12:35 AM
Finally!!!!!!!!!!! Our little boy is here. Coletyn Thomas!!

This is the birth announcement that we will be getting in the mail... one day!!
Grab a box of kleenex and watch this video... http://animoto.com/play/IqAX1aSPP0KYmGi8JHMlgQ

So I ended up going past my due date... I was due on the 5th of January. At my appointment on the 4th, my doc set me up to be induced on the 7th. I walked into this pregnancy expecting to be "done" at week 38 because that is when Cecelia was born. That was my finish line. That is what I was thinking. BADDDDDDD idea. This meant every day past December 21st put me in a piss poor mood. I expected to be done with work on December 22 (my classroom was setup for this), I had all the holiday stuff planned, a bag was actually packed (unlike with Cecelia) and.... nothing. I was in utmost disappointment when I went back to work on Jan. 2nd... not to mention UNCOMFORTABLE. I was there not a few hours when I realized 1. this is ridiculous (I'll have to come back the same day to work in April regardless of when I go out and 2. shoot, it's the legal holiday. My doc's office is closed. This meant one more day of work... secured the doctor's note and Tuesday, Jan 3rd was my last day of work. The rest of the week was spent doing everything imaginable to get the baby out... I was bound and determined to not need the DEVIL juice, pitocin.
On Friday we went to the zoo... that did it. The hills and pace we kept almost killed me but I was already 4 cm... what else was it going to take. That night I could tell something was different (no need to share details) however, still no action. Induction day was around the corner. The next morning (6:30 am to be exact) I got out of the car at the hospital and finally had my first contraction of the whole pregnancy... not one braxton hicks the whole 40 weeks and 3 days.

Naturally the doctor's orders had pitocin so the nurses wouldn't deviate. I'll save you the following blow by blow and give you the highlights of labor....
Pitocin = 1 really long, crappy, strong (kill me now) 30 minute contraction. We called the nurse.. "Oh, sorry, the monitor looked like you were getting a break in between!" She finally conceded and turned the pitocin off. My body didn't care... still thought is was on pitocin.
Got to the hospital and was 4 cm. Went from 4 cm to 9 in 45 minutes....little did I know when I requested the epidural I was at 9 cm already and would be pushing in 45 minutes. Thank goodness I requested one. Each pregnancy I've felt like a wimp when requesting the epidural. However, thank goodness I asked for one when I did. I may not have had time to get one otherwise!!
Unfortunately, the epidural only lasted about 10 minutes and then slowly my left side started to feel everything... coincidentally, Coletyn also lodged some part of him into my left hip/pelvis... doing something ungodly to my nerves or something... pain was worse than the contractions!!
The next part is comical. The doc asked me how long I pushed with Cecelia. 90 minutes.... Little did I know I was racing the woman next door as we were each "ready." They decided to let the other lady (who was having her third) push first and I would "start pushing with the nurse." A couple of pushes later all of a sudden there was a furry of activity in our room... 6 people came in, the doc came in, and I heard... "Stop pushing!!!" It was right out of the movies... the doc was scrambling to put her booties and gown on... guess they underestimated me!! Two pushes later out came little Coletyn!! I won!

8 lbs 15 oz, 20.5 inches long; 12:33 pm (6 hrs after getting to the hospital; 5 hrs after induction started!!)

Shot by Jason....
Cecelia came to the hospital a few hours later to meet her new brother. She had a gift (a Tigger stuffed animal) for him and Coletyn had a BItty Baby for Cecelia. Cecelia's first comments were, "He's so cute!!"

Mommy and her babies at the hospital.
I think those are the highlights...
For the amount of pain I was in for 40 weeks, as I held little Coletyn as they wheeled us down to postpartum, I turned to Jason and told him I would do it all over again.... and I would. I truly would. We are all smitten by our little boy.
More pictures in two albums. Coletyn Thomas and Family Photo Shoot Jan 2012

Now What...

 Posted by eitings on February 13, 2012 at 1:40 PM
The medical issues we've faced this month have driven me nuts.... It all started in the hospital with Coletyn. His bili ruben levels started to spike right after birth. Naturally, the doc's recommendation was to supplement with formula... this tree hugging momma's worst nightmare. Long story short, I had to supplement (minimally) for about 36 hours with formula as his bili levels continued to spike and his weight continued to drop. Coletyn got down to 7lbs 14 oz (birth weight 8 lbs 15 oz). He just had his one month appointment and is up to 10 lbs 2 oz so no worries there. However this battle with jaundice meant 6 consecutive trips to the pediatrician (with the toddler in tow) to have a blood test and weight check. That got miserable and exhausting for the whole family. Although, it did get us good at getting out of the house with two kids to punch a clock for an appointment (a skill I am striving to be able to accomplish on my own with the two kids!) This started on a Saturday at the hospital and continued the whole week, through the weekend until the Monday following. Cole was put on the bili blanket at our house on the Wednesday and stayed on it until the following Monday. This stunk.... it was hard to cuddle with my little boy who was tethered by a cord. On Monday he graduated from the blanket and I thought we were in the clear. Tuesday we got a call from the pediatrician... Coletyn's newborn screen came back concerning... can you please bring him in NOW for another blood test. Long story short, the screen showed too low levels of something I can't remember the name of that could mean he had a metabolic disorder that dealt with how his system could digest proteins... WHAT... are you kidding me. I flew to the pediatrician, had a good cry, poked his foot for a blood draw for the 10th time in two weeks.... what next. Great news, it will take a WEEKKKKK to get the results back. Great, I'll be on pins and needles for a week. Can't wait! One long week later.... the new results showed that he was fine. Whew! Dodged that bullet. The whole time Coletyn continued to have the jaundice (as he not only had physiological jaundice (occurs quickly after birth) he also had breastfeeding jaundice (occurs about a week after birth). The cure for breastfeeding jaundice is to... you guessed it... STOP breastfeeding for 24-48 hours. Once again, something this tree hugging momma wasn't going to do. The alternative... allow his levels to slowly come down as his body starts breaking down the bili versus quickly coming down by having formula. The pediatrician knows me and she said it was fine to let the bili come down slowly but that it could take months. She said there was nothing to worry about as long as he kept pooping and gaining weight. We chose this route as my worst fear is a baby who refused to nurse. So, one would think that was it, right. Not so fast!! All of a sudden when Coletyn turned 4 weeks old he stopped sleeping and wasn't happy unless nursing... this got exhausting and worrisome. We spent a week not sleeping. I had him until Jason's alarm went off at 4 am and then turned him over to daddy. I didn't know if this was a just a fussy baby or if it were something more (as Cecelia was always SOOO good I didn't have anything to compare it to). At his appointment the pediatrician confirmed what my google searches told me. GERD (acid reflux)... Treatment options... first recommendation shockingly... formula. Are you kidding me, again. NOT doing that, what else can we do? Second option, add rice cereal to expressed breast milk,.... so feed my kid from a bottle... um, yeah, still not comfortable with that and logistically, pump and then feed him all by myself at night. No thanks. And from what I read their little bellies aren't ready to digest anything else at this age. Then there is the whole risk of allergies by introducing so early- nope. What else can we do? Third, fourth and fifth options that we are doing- sleep in swing/carseat, put on prescription meds (Axid), elevate crib/bassinet 30 degrees. Pediatrician said the meds would take about a week to work. We have had good nights (up about twice to eat between 9 pm and 7 am- sleeping in swing) and not so good nights (up MULTIPLE times, won't sleep once put down, etc). We are on day 4 of meds...getting there. My poor guy. Hopefully things will start to slow down now. It would be nice to have a happy, portable baby so I can get Cecelia out of this house and on the town. If I am climbing the walls, she has to be too. Just one question to leave you with, why is the answer to every medical ailment for a newborn to stop nursing... the most natural thing that can be done and the advice is to stop... I DON'T GET IT, I really don't! Well, any how. I am running on about 3 hours of consecutive sleep last night so here is to the 100 loads of laundry I am about to do today. Where on Earth is it all coming from??? Until next time... Momma!

update... reflux?

 Posted by eitings on March 26, 2012 at 1:15 PM
So, after being discouraged for two weeks that Cole's reflux wasn't improving on the meds... only improving because of changes we made with handling him.... I called the nurse line. Maybe the med wasn't working? try a different one? did he out grow the dose? I felt that something wasn't right. Well, the nurses were so helpful (get ready for sarcasm). First of all... she kept referring to my little boy as "she" and "your daughter" and then the cherry on top... her further recommendation was to bottle feed all feedings...if you've ready my previous medical post you know this got my goat and I basically hung up on her.

it was either right before that or right after... a girlfriend was over and witnessed Coletyn's irritability paired with the fact that I was pumping mass quantities of milk for having a 6 week old infant (my body should be stumbling over itself just to keep up with Cole) and she recommended an article on oversupply from Le Leche League. I read it and thought hard... it made sense but so did the reflux.
2 1/2 day's worth of pumping = way too much extra!

All the symptoms were EXACTLY the same. Onset around 3-5 weeks. irritability. excessive puking. better if left upright.  gurgling noises.... etc. so... I explored other options. around 6 weeks is also the age when babies start to become more aware of their surrounding and need to be coaxed to sleep a bit more. It was difficult to get him to sleep for many reasons. Reason #1... CECELIA. She still didn't get the whole be quiet and whisper thing. Also, I was still nursing Cole to sleep at this time (unknowingly making his pain worse). Needless to say, he wasn't sleeping very well during the day and I thought that maybe this was the cause of the excessive irritability. This went on for another two weeks. Then the week of Cole's 2 month apt I went to the internet to do some more digging. I found more articles on reflux and oversupply. I looked in-depth and compared the symptoms of each. In true teacher fashion I constructed a Venn Diagram.

Which side was heavier with symptoms - Oversupply Side. Holy crap.... I've been water boarding my child every two hours for 6 weeks. He has been in constant "my belly is too full" pain. Gold star for you mommy...
Long story short I called the lactation consultants at West Allis and they told me what to do. It worked. We now have a happy, smiling little boy.

What about that reflux?? The question still remains if Cole has the reflux or not. Which came first the chicken or the egg... the reflux or the oversupply or is it both and my oversupply made it unbearable for him. I went armed to his two month apt with the pediatrician (the people who have now told me on more than five occasions to bottle feed instead of nurse). She validated my claim, apologized for the nurse line but still thought he may have the reflux. She said he has outgrown his med dosage and gave us the new dose. If he starts to get irritable again... use increased dose. If not, finish his current prescription and be done. Sounds easy. Doesn't it.... right. I've tried a couple of times to stop the meds (because coincidentally the script will run out when I go back to work and didn't want to start that experiment when I had to get to work in morning... could call for some long nights). Each time we will miss a dose or two (on purpose) and then Cole will get cranky... now is it the acid of the reflux or just a tired infant... how they heck am I supposed to know? So, I give him the med and life goes on. I am planning on calling the nurse line today to get some advice. Why am I calling them... beats the hell out of me. I am sure they are going to tell me to bottle feed again... but if I bitch enough I am hoping they will let me leave a message for the pediatrician.

Long story short, once again.. modern day medicine has screwed us. If those nurses would have just listened to me and asked a few questions maybe I would not have continued to water board my child for three more weeks...

Five Years

 Posted by eitings on April 13, 2012 at 12:05 AM
Today is April 12th... Five years ago today, my father passed from cancer. it seems like yesterday, yet on the other hand, so much has happened since then, including my two children. I really don't have words to explain what it feel like to have children and not have your father around to see/know them. They'll never hear his laugh, appreciate the humor in his favorite movies, or smell the exhaust with him at Road America....

We took Cole's three month pictures this week. I have a few shirts from my father that I knock around in. We used them in his pictures as part of the staging. Maybe one day Cole will appreciate the significance... I know I feel it.

I don't have much more to say...... I'll post pictures soon. Jason is editing them and we want to do one more pose this weekend. My little boy is growing. According to our scale he is somewhere between 14 and 15 pounds. We aren't to the doc until his 4 month appointment.

A friend salvaged our documents off of our old Dell that blew up. One of those documents was the eulogy I wrote and delivered at my father's funeral. I am pasting it below to have it saved somewhere else in the "cloud".... apparently computers aren't safe.
Good Morning. As long as we have known this was the inevitable, I have known that I had to do this. Stand up here and tell you all about my father, however, shortly after he passed on Thursday, I was sitting at his bedside reading a letter he had written me, dated January 2005. In this letter I learned his wishes regarding this very moment. He asked for no eulogies, as they are too hard. Stuck in a quandary, I debated over what to do about this very moment. I came to the conclusion that I would not stand up here and eulogize, I decided that I would tell you a wonderful story about a man, named Tom, who is my father.

It all started back in the ninth grade. In English I was given an assignment. I was to write a paper and give a speech on the person I admired the most. Naturally I chose my father. I spoke about how he grew up, in Wheeling and in Paddock Lake. I spoke about what he did for a living. But mostly I spoke about his accomplishments.

When I look back on that time I realize those are not the reasons I admired him so much. I didn’t admire him for his accomplishments in life. I admired him for who he was. It took years to realize this, but now I am glad that I know. For I can remember his

Bravery… Like when he gave a eulogy for his father or letting a teenager named Jason come over to see his 15-year-old daughter.

I can remember his Compassion… Like when he bagged up his cans in West Allis and put them under the pine tree for an elderly gentleman to come and pick them up.

I can remember his Craftsmanship… example, the Algoma house or the rocket I had to make in 8th grade science that he wouldn’t let me touch.

I can remember his Humor… like when he would tell Erica and me stories about the comical events of his childhood or when he would rewind a part in a movie he thought was hilarious.

I can remember his Innovativeness… We have all seen the “cave.” Who would have thought cable and heat.

I can remember his Eloquence… like the speech he gave at my wedding or his written word on his current website dedicated to the Algoma house.

I can remember his Protectiveness… like the late April blizzard Dad ordered last week that prevented me from seeing him in his last hours.

I can remember his Courageousness… like when he agreed to perform in the father/daughter dance at the recital in 2000 or his fearless 2 year and 4 month battle with cancer.

These are the admirable qualities, including many more, which make up my father. All of these things I will remember and I ask you when you think of my dad to think of a time when you saw his
Or Courageousness

Thank you for listening to my story about a man I love and miss, My Father.

I would like to leave you with one last thought. I was looking for some way to conclude my time up here today. While looking I found a poem written by Christina Rosetti in 1879. I believe if my father were here today, this is what he would share with us all. The poem is entitled “Remember.” Remember
Remember me when I am gone away,
Gone far away into the silent land;
When you can no more hold me by the hand,
Nor I half turn to go, yet turning stay.
Remember me when no more day by day
You tell me of our future that you plann'd:
Only remember me;
you understand It will be late to counsel then or pray.
Yet if you should forget me for a while
And afterwards remember, do not grieve:
For if the darkness and corruption leave
A vestige of the thoughts that once I had,
Better by far you should forget and smile
Than that you should remember and be sad.

Thank you. 

Suzy Home(made)maker

 Posted by eitings on April 9, 2012 at 12:15 AM
Uh oh! Watch out. I have a new obsession.... home made items. No, not cooking homemade. We've been doing that for years because of my allergies (nothing processed in this house!). Homemade items you would normally purchase factory made in the stores.... buckle up. Here I go!! (All of the following homemade ideas I found on Pinterest.... another new love of my life!)

My obsession started with baby wipes. I wanted to try to go with cloth diapers for Coletyn, but soon realized my life did not have room for extra loads of laundry a week (i do realize I am not supermom, believe it or not!!) Why cloth?? I have this chemical phobia. For one, I am allergic to most. Two, all the increased in cancer in the last few decades has to be due to environmental causes... so we are staying AWAY from as much as we can. You have to hunt hard to find plastic in my house. We own stock in Kleen Kanteen (or we should; we have so many of their products) and it you can buy it in glass or stainless, we have it! Sorry, off on a tangent! Anyways, I knew I couldn't do cloth so I compromised with my conscience and decided to do homemade baby wipes. See directions here.. I did make a few modifications. I replaced the baby oil with coconut oil and reduced the amount of baby soap to 2 drops. I have to say, Coletyn's butt has NEVER looked so good. I wish I would have known about these for Cecelia....her poor red tushie!

As I was saying, I started this plight because I wanted to avoid chemicals. Soon after making these wipes, I realized how much money I was saving on wipes alone. Ball park- I can make the same quantity of wipes and save about $10. Uh oh... someone unleashed the beast!! What else could I save money on???

Since our beloved Walker came to town, I've taken a 10.1% take home pay cut... quite a hefty blow for a family with three months notice to adjust. This combined with Jason's $3/hour cut the year previous with his company when they downsized and add on the costs associated with two kids...bam... it's a lot. We've decided that we won't sacrifice the kids' health (or ours) just because we are bringing home less. What am I saying? What I am saying is we buy organic (produce, canned goods, beauty supplies, soaps/cleaners, etc). Yes, it gets expensive. For example...we buy California Baby Body Wash and bubble bath at Target. No, these brands never go on sale. We spend $18.99 for 21oz of body/hair wash. I know... expensive but what we are willing to pay for less exposure to chemicals. Saddle up... it's about to get good.

I started with hand soap. We spend $5.99 at Woodman's on a 16oz hand soap. Through Pinterest, I found a recipe and made a gallon of hand soap for $3.50. Can't find the link... recipe is...
to 1 gallon of boiling water add 8 oz graded bar soap (of your choice- I used Organic hand soap from Woodmans) and 2 tablespoons of vegetable glycerin (found in organic section of store). Once all soap is dissolved, remove from heat and let sit for 24 hours. After 24 hours mix with electric mixer. If too think add water to desired consistency. I am storing in a milk jug (yes, it bothers me that it is plastic!).

This was too easy...way too easy. Next up was soap for the kids!! This one took a little more leg work as kid's soap is tear free and when is the last time you saw a bar of tear free soap... never! Have no fear, the internet is here!! Walgreens carries a brand of soap that is tear free and organic. Sold... and it was on sale!! I purchased enough to avoid the shipping costs... these kids aren't going anywhere. We'll use it. It came in the mail, easy! Long story short, using the recipe above (and only receiving a minor injury with the cheese grater... the soap is HARD, watch out!) I made a gallon of baby/kid body wash soap for $4.50. Yes, a gallon for $4.50. We were spending $18.99 on 21 oz!!! I was even able to stretch their soap further by adding more water to it.. it was really think. This allowed me to then make a gallon of bubble bath from the same $4.50 worth of body soap for no extra money. Recipe...
6 cups shampoo (body wash is the same, right?)
9 cups water
2 palms of salt.
Mix and store.

That is to make a gallon. The real recipe is 1/2 cup shampoo, 3/4 cup water, 1 tsp salt.
Yep a gallon of bubble bath for $0.00 when we were spending $12.99 on 13 oz of the  California Baby brand.

You may be getting bored already. It is obvious I could gloat talk about this for hours!!
I've also done the following:
homemade fabric softener - but used my conditioner because I don't use it anymore... oh man, that's a whole other blog post... coconut oil, how I love you!
homemade pancake mix
Homemade Granola

I have others lined up but I had to go back to work so stay tuned....(onion soup mix, cream of something soup mix, and instant oatmeal packets... coming your way).
I credit these little projects and the few organizational projects I did on maternity leave as keeping me sane. When I felt like I was starting to lose it or forget who I was, I organized something or made something home made...a few of the organizational projects I completed are linked below.
Car organizing #1
Car organizing #2
Card Organizing - used this idea to make books for kids of all their birthday/holiday cards from family. What are you supposed to do with those? Keep in a shoe box?
freezer/Crockpot Cooking- voila, meals for when I went back to work!
Egg McMuffins- Jason takes these to work. We make a dz at a time!
Uh, oh... Cole is up... been a little busy.. other than having that new baby an all!!

Happy Easter! For Easter Cole has blessed our family with 2 hour + morning naps (started yesterday- his 3 month birthday). Talk about relief.... quality time with Cecelia, mommy time... hence, blog post!!

Cole's Three Month Pictures (April 2012)

 Posted by eitings on May 4, 2012 at 11:15 PM
Just a quick blog post for Coletyn's three month photos. We shot them on our steps and in our kitchen. I had two shirts from my dad that we used. In the sets on the stairs he is laying on one. In the shots in my arms, I am wearing one of my dad's shirts...


This is where my old blog stopped. To bridge the gap between May 2012 and June 2013 I'll include the following pictures!

Best first dance recital picture we could get!

Summer 2012

Coletyn's 6 month pictures

Fall 2012

Great- Grandpa BIll (William) Eiting

Great-Grandma Phyllis Eiting

Coletyn's 9 month pictures

 Cecelia Turns FOUR

Papoo (Great Grandpa) and Great Grandma Nor

First Hair Cut!


Coletyn Turns ONE 

Here Auntie

I could never get that bib clean again.

Happy Birthday Momma
Spring 2013

Great Grandma Harwell

Dance Recital

See the next volume!