Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Christmas Good.... Christmas Sad

More memories to share...
(I have NO idea what has happened with the spacing on this post. I've tried to fix it to no avial - so ignore that bizarre and random spacing - in the Preview it doesn't have that and in the original post it doesn't have it.... who knows?)

Megan loves to be flipped upside down by Daddy.

Grandma made cookies for all the grandkids to decorate. Megan tried to get in on all the fun with Daniel, Justin and Anna... but in the end - she ended up having her first taste of sugar cookies. It was easier that way!

Aaaaaaaaa-Chooooooooo! Uuuhhhhh OOOOhhhhhh!!

Daniel, Justin and Anna are great playmates! The are so cute with Megan - they love to entertain her and have a contest to see who can make her laugh and smile more.After opening stockings together, Megan was enthralled by Daniels new Disney World hat. Daniel being the good sport (and racking up points for getting her to laugh and smile) let her pull it off his head. They are really fun to watch together. Megan adores Daniel!Justin and Anna playing with all the toys in their stockings. It was so fun - What a wonderful First Christmas for Megan...

And then... the Christmas Sad began.

We knew that Megan had been fussy all week and the cough that developed on Sunday got progressively worse and on Christmas it turned into a wheezy cough. So today it was off to the Dr. We had a feeling she had an ear infection and we were right. But we also were worried that her cough wasn't of the common cold variety. And unfortunately we were right there too. She's developed Acute Bronchiolitis with RSV. Yuck. So now she's on an antibiotic for her ear infection and gets breathing treatments for the bronchiolitis.

I wish I had my camera at the Dr's office. When they determined that she needed something for her breathing they wanted to try her on a breathing treatment machine. It's hooked to the wall and there is a mask you have to keep on for 7 minutes - connected to the mask is the medicine. You know - bull riders are supposed to stay on the bull for 7 seconds..... Well I think I could try out for bullriding after today's adventure. I told Tom that he didn't need to come, after all it wasn't like we were getting shots or anything. OH MY GOSH! At one point I had Megan's feet held down by my legs, One hand was holding the mask one, the other was trying to get her hands down, and in the process she grabbed the cord, pulled the mask off, knocked the medicine part to the floor (here's where I am scrambling to get it reassembed before I have to explain this to the Dr or nurse how I can't hold a little baby down). If there had been a referee there they would have held her hand up and declared her the winner of our little wrestling match. Anyway - ended up she inhaled enough to know that it helped her so we were sent home with a portable one. Thank goodness this is much easier to handle. Tonight Tom and I got it put together and gave her a treatment and she actually sat still -- maybe that was because it only takes a few seconds since this one is done with an inhaler attached to a duck bill... perhaps it was me going quack quack quack quack.... Yeah - I know, you are all wishing we had that on tape!

Merry Christmas

It all began with the birth of a baby! I can't even imagine what Mary and Joseph went through as they prepared for the birth of Jesus and then raised him. Raising the Son of God - what a job. Tom and I have started a new Christmas tradition - watching the Nativity Story on Christmas Eve. We started this last year when it first came out, and kept up the new tradition this year. If you haven't seen it, I highly recommend it. It just reminds you what was involved with the birth of Christ. After you see it, you can't just read the Christmas story without thinking about the little details. And that little baby, the one who brought salvation to the world, he started out as a crying, hungry, newborn - just like any other baby. As I think about it, it causes me to hug Megan tighter and appreciate her all the more. I couldn't imagine going through all this with her and then offer her as a sacrifice on a cross. Of course, she doesn't really belong to us, She is the Lord's - and we are stewards of this precious little girl. At any rate, the baby Jesus was just like Megan - needy and tiny and so lovable. Thank you Lord for your beautiful son and what His life and death means to us... may our little girl reflect his glory thoughout her life! Happy Birthday Baby Jesus!

Speaking of season of children.... we had our "big" family gathering with all my family this weekend. 20 of us all together! And out of the 20, 7 are of the young variety (not that we are old or anything). 3 generations represented, ranging in age from 74 to 9 months old - Family is an amazing blessing. We've gone through illnesses, losses, prayers and are never short on love. I love you all - thank you for still claiming us as family!
Here are some of our special memories...

Megan and Aunt Kelly enjoying the tree (and perhaps snooping a bit)

Daddy and Megan before all the fun began... Note the extreme pile of packages... with a Christmas opening with 20 people (remember the 7 kids) it can get a little wild!Megan loved the bows and paper as much as the gifts.Megan and Mommy watching the action.One of Megan's favorite gifts was a set of musical instruments. Her other favorite gift was a jack-in-the-box. She loved waiting for the jack to jump out (although here you can see she also loved the tags that came with the gifts).If if she couldn't get the jack to come out by herself, that's ok - it also doubled well as another drum.
The two little drummer girls (Megan and Anna).
Finally, someone to help with the jack-in-the-box.
It was a wonderful gathering that made it a super weekend. Today we had a smaller affair with our little family this morning and then with my parents, and the KKDJA clan this evening. I'll try to get those pictures posted tomorrow!

Sunday, December 23, 2007


What do you do when you need to keep a fussy baby happy and awake?
Go to the mall of course... that's why there are so many strollers there in the winter! And if you are lucky, you can head to a mall with a carousel.

There is nothing like a little ride on the merry-go-round to elict some smiles from some little ones. Megan and her friend Nate had a great time (not to mention some fun chatting time for the moms).

Good Work Friends

Have we ever mentioned how absolutely blessed we are through Tom's job. Oh my gosh - he works with some of the greatest people. I've always had the privledge to be included in work outings and have had a chance to get to know them. I've been able to travel with Tom to the "other office" in ND and had a chance to get to know some of the folks up there. They are so wonderful. And Tom LOVES his job. That is so rare in todays' world, and it truly is such a blessing. This week, Lorna (Tom's boss) was in town so the crew had a little outing. Several spouses and other friends were there, and of course Megan and I had to join in on the fun. We had a chance to go to dinner with Lorna the night before to one of our favorite places - PF Changs - yummo! The last time we were there with Lorna, it was the week before Megan came and we sat and laughed and laughed and I remember saying to Lorna - yeah, none of this seems real yet, I still can't believe we are going to have a baby... And then wham, less than a week later, Tom was calling her to say - Surprise! She came 3 weeks early! And on this outing, she was with us. It's amazing how time flies and how much has changed (a blissfully wonderful change I might add)
As another reminder of how awesome Tom's job is - his boss (Lorna) just got a new boss (Mitch). Well, we were blown away when Mitch (the new boss of the boss) sent Megan a Christmas present for her first Christmas. Let me just say - she LOVED it!!!!! It's a Learning Puppy - and Megan went wild over it.

And then not only did she get the joy of the present - but there was the amazing box to play in! That was just the cherry on top!

Thank you so much Mitch - what a special treat for Megan - we look forward to meeting you! Tom said you were top notch - Megan and I can attest to that as well!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

More Tales From The Weekend

There are a couple of posts I'm making today so keep reading...
As I said in an earlier blog - what a weekend. We were on the go most of the weekend. It ended up working really well with Megan's schedule. Pretty much we were home when she was napping, and off when she wasn't. The weekend really helped us make the transition from 3 naps a day to 2 naps a day. Now that doesn't mean the 2 naps a day is easy - goodness no. It's still a fight to keep Megan awake and occupied for 3-4 hours in the middle of the day so that she takes 2 good naps. Usually at about 2-2 1/2 hours, she starts to get really really tired. So it's another hour of Mommy trying to keep her happy and awake (and me not going crazy in the process). The best bet - go out somewhere! Now that it's gotton colder, it's a little more difficult. Megan would love to be outside all the time -but it's winter.... So we have to get creative. I'm up for suggestions if anyone has them!
On Sunday, Megan made it though church (her last Sunday in the baby nursery - she had to say goodbye to everyone - this week she moves up to the crawlers). As soon as she was in the car, she was out. So we went home for a 3 hour nap and then got up to head back to church for the kids Christmas show. We have several friends who had kids in the program. It was great! I have to say, I just smiled and thought - I wonder what Megan will do when she's up there in a couple of years? Will she be the little one who screams the words, the shy one who won't open their mouth, the little girl who is playing with the hair of the girl in front of her, the one who is mesmerized by her parents watching her and waves the whole time, or the one with the "wardrobe malfunction" who's dress is over her head most of the time????? Guess we'll just have to wait and see - until then, here are some shots of the other folks cuties...

Some of them are a little blurry or dark because we were sitting way in back, in case Megan had to make a fast escape.

Megan enjoyed watching the show. She even saw her friend Olivia (I have no idea how she saw her from so far away) but she had her eye on her the entire time. (In the picture above, Olivia is in the front row, in the middle, sort of turned around looking over her shoulder)
After the show, we raced home for a neighborhood party. It was fun to finally meet some of our other neighbors. Megan had fun playing with the boys next door. The 2 older boys (Mandall and Hunter) love her! They shower her with kisses whenever we see them. They also have a baby in the house - Cooper. He's about 2 months younger than Megan. It was fun - Thanks Mandi for hosting such a fun gathering!

Festival of Trees

Earlier this week, we met up with Ann and Nate at the Atlanta History Center to see the Festival of Trees. I have to say, I was a little disappointed. It was "downsized" this year and by the time we got there they had already given away some of the trees. The kids liked looking at the trees, but it was a little sad that it wasn't the big Christmas extravaganza that I thought it would be

The best part of the outing was their cool train room. They have one room set up like a town with a train running around it. On the outside you can push buttons all around the track to make the minatures do things. They had bears skating, planes flying (that was a big hit with Megan and Nate), busses moving, all sorts of things. I think we all liked the train room better than the trees.
I got to show Megan some of what to expect when we go visit Grandma and Papa in MN - a little snowblower in action. And the little man is even wearing MN Viking colors. Uncle Dan I told Megan that was what you had been doing last week.

Back to Work

Tuesday, Megan and I took a trip back to my old school to see some friends. It was so great catching up with everyone. Megan got to meet all my co-workers and dear friends. Thanks to Amy and Carol for hanging out with us - we love you guys and I miss you!

Megan and Amy - Amy was my trailer-mate, cohort and a good friend.
Megan's view of Mom's workplace.... cool stuff on the floor to pick up!
Only a few days of school left for them - hang on - you'll make it! We'll be back to visit in 2008!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Baby signs

We've been working on some simple "baby signs" with Megan. Just little things to help her communicate without screaming at us. The big sign we've worked on is "more". Well the funny thing about that is that Megan occasionally uses it when she's eating. She really uses it when we are giving her teething tablets or tylenol. Great - a medicine junkie! Today I had given her 2 teething tablets because she was jamming her fingers in her mouth and crying and banging toys into her top gums (and the "experts" say that there is no such thing as teething pain - yeah, whatever!!!). As soon as she had disolved the tablets, she looked at me and as clear as day made her "more" sign. It was so cute I wanted to give her more just to reward her. Of course, I didn't, but don't think it wasn't a battle.
Megan has been working on some other signs of her own to tell me what she wants me to know. Like grabbing the spoon and throwing it across the room to tell me she dosen't want anymore. Yeah, not liking that one so much. But the absolutely cutest and maybe strangest (and a little sad) is when she pulls off her own sock and stuffs it into her mouth. That's her loudest "mommy my mouth hurts" sign. And if she's not wearing socks (or can't get them off) then she'll use a burp cloth, blanket, daddy's sock... whatever is handy. She'll stuff it in her mouth, chomp down and just crawl around that way - usually over to me with that - "help me" look in her eye. Melts my heart.

Now that she is crawling, she's also loving all the exploring she can do. She can finally get to whatever toy she wants. Which has been so funny for me to watch. Now I can sit back and just let her go get what she wants. I have to say, all my friends with mobile babies kept saying, you don't want her to crawl... now once she's fast enough to outcrawl me, I may... but right now, I love it! Some of the toys she's been going for are not the toys I thought she wanted to play with. Here's a little snapshot into the chaos that our playroom has become. She LOVES taking every toy off the shelf (and then watching mommy put them all back so that the game can begin again).

She's loves her caterpillar. She's figured out how to pull the string and make it move.Her rock and roll ball has provided lots of laughs!

This is her newest toy. She loves to roll it while she moves on her knees.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Busy Weekend

This weekend was a busy one! So check in I'll have many more posts coming at you. I may not get them all in today - but they'll definitely be up over the next couple of days.

On Saturday, Megan got to go celebrate the birthday of her friend Andrew. She had a great time at the party, and little Andrew was the cutest 1 year old you ever saw! It took him awhile to get into his cake, but he thought the candle was cool! HAPPY BIRTHDAY ANDREW!
One of the main hits of the party for Megan was the cool balloons. She thought they were awesome. Here's one of her (sheer joy on her face) when she finally got close enough to touch it.Here's the scream of delight when it kept floating down towards her and then someone would make it go up again. She was so funny to watch because no matter where she was in the room, she would find the balloon and watch it like a hawk.Andrew's sister, Amber (in the red), helped Andrew open some of this presents. Megan would occasionally get the rewards of having some paper thrown her way - she was in hog heaven. It gave us a glimpse of how fun Christmas was going to be. Crinkly paper is Megan's favorite toy (along with balloons).Megan's friend, Sarah Michelle, was also at the party. So the girls got to play together a bit. It was all quite amusing to them.After all the presents were open, Andrew was sweet enough to let Megan play with some of his new toys. Andrew was sporting his ride while Megan kept a beat on Andrews new ball.The party was so much fun that it just wore little Megan out. She was exhausted and asleep before we even got out of the neighborhood.
All that fun - it's hard to believe that Megan is on her way to turning 1. It's been so amazing to watch Andrew grow up - get teeth, learn to crawl, start to walk - and know that Megan is only a few months behind him. It's like a preview of whats to come! Happy Birthday Andrew - thanks fo letting us share in your day of fun!