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"And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God,
to them who are the called according to His purpose"

Romans 8:28



August 28, 2009

Three years and counting....

Heather writes:

"For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh".
Gen. 2: 24
HAPPY ANNIVERSARY COLIN!
xoxo

Bon anniversaire de mariage 28 août 2009

Colin writes:
Last year we weren't able to celebrate our wedding anniversary together as Heather and I were apart. This year thankfully we are together.

Therefore I would just like to say to you Heather dear, "it's good to be together, and I look forward to spending many more years with you"



Love always,

Colin......

August 21, 2009

Museums are for kids!

I'm REALLY tired tonight but thought I would post a few photos from our trip to the children's museum today before I go to bed. Isla and I went with a friend and her son and I think it is safe to say we all had a good time.
I'll be short on commentary but this museum is great because she can touch EVERYTHING!
There are areas for kids to just run about, get dressed up and kid-sized exhibits. I think I may try to make another trip before we leave for Canada.

In the locker....

... out of the locker.

... the bunny costume she looked incredibly cute wearing...



... just like her father in the kitchen, making a mess and lovin' it!

She wasn't sure what to think of the fireman get up...

'Til next time,

August 19, 2009

Now what?

... and the verdict is...


DENY


... for both applications.


The "big" application consisting of the work and residency permit was a big disappointment. I say disappointment with surprise because even though we sort of knew it was coming and I want to move back to Canada, I was really disappointed.

I don't want to move again. I want to stay here to have stability in our lives - for the first time in Isla's life. I want to sit on my sofa's again (they're in my parents basement 1500 miles away) in our living room.


I haven't seen the letter but Colin said that some of the points they raised were petty. Could be but at the end of the day the company was too new, not established enough to qualify for this visa. Thankfully the denial has nothing to do with Colin and I and we have no ban from entering the US again in the future.


The biggest surprise that made me madder than a hornet was in regards to Colin's temporary business visa - the visa we thought we had been approved. The extension to this visa application was made in March and we got a decision TODAY in the mail. Also denied and in my humble opinion, completely avoidable. Apparently our attorney applied for the extension five days past it's expiration date amongst a couple of other reasons that I think she should've been aware of.


We have to "depart from the United States within a definite time frame".


The big brass in Colin's office are discussing at the moment the next steps. If those plans don't include Canada, I'll be REALLY disappointed and even madder than two hornets.


To be honest, I surprise myself by even posting about this. I want to bury my head and forget that it's happening. We are both so fed up and frustrated and there never seems to be an end in sight. I know there is a plan for our family and I know this is part of that plan but at times it gets hard to accept and follow. We're human, sinful and want to do our own thing but we pray that soon we will see why the visa's were denied.


Also a prayer request - please pray for Colin as he in Seattle for a few days on business. He doesn't want to be away at this time but he has commitments to fulfill. Please pray for a successful and safe trip home on Friday.

'Til next time,

August 17, 2009

Happy Half-Birthday!




Half-Birthday? Yes, Isla is 18 months so half way to her 2nd birthday. I've heard the 2nd year goes quicker than the 1st year and they are right!


She is still very much a happy social girl however just the last few weeks she has started to grow weary of adults but plays well with other children. Sharing isn't easy either but in her defense she's alone alot and is pretty good the few times she gets to "practice" sharing. At least there are no tantrums!

She loves a good cuddle on her time and is a good smoocher. All we have to say is "mmmmm" and she'll come running to give us a kiss. Colin gets loads of hugs but I really have to work to get one! Nice.


On the speaking front she is a chatter box but 90% of the time, we're not sure what she is saying otherwise she is right up there with her peers. She says all sorts of words like keys (a favourite toy), apple (the new favourite word), ball (which she can throw overhand) and others which Colin and I can't think of so you'll just have to believe us.


She has been eating REALLY well and all the Irish and Dutch folk out there will be happy to hear that potatoes are gobbled down! At one point we were thinking that she was going to be a vegetarian but over the last few days we've managed to get some ground beef in her. Meatloaf will be on the dinner menu alot in the coming months I'm sure. So yeah, she LOVES fruit and vegetables and with alot of summer fruit coming into season that's great for the grocery bill. Between the three of us we can easily eat a cantaloupe every 1.5 days not to mention she can eat a peach by herself within minutes!

With all that food in her, now her 18 month stats:

Weight: 22.8 lbs - 25th percentile
Height: 31.5 inches - 40th percentile

Still our little munchkin and she continues to follow her own growth curve so I'm not worried. I was hoping she would top the scales at 23 lbs. but maybe we'll hit that milestone next month.




The "experts" say she should be:


Most toddlers should be able to . . .
Draw a scribble well - done
Run well - done
Become picky about certain foods - not too bad
Say at least 15 or 20 words - done
Feed self with spoon - not really but she tries

Some toddlers will probably be able to . . .

String more words together to make phrases or puts together pairs of words - she said "bad kitty" to Dixie without coaxing
Talk more clearly - work in progress
Brush teeth with help - done
Take off an article of clothing alone - done esp. if socks count!
Jump around - done, loves to dance too!

Some toddlers could possibly be able to . . .
Take apart toys and sometimes puts them back together - I don't let her take toys apart!
Show signs of potty training - nope, not yet
Climb out of crib and high chair - done
Take off clothes - some
Draw circles -nope
Understand two part directions - very well
As you can see she's coming along as expected for her age and we are very pleased with her progress each month. She loves to play and is getting really good at climbing (too well for my comfort) and is now going up and down stairs by herself. We often go the park in the morning and she just loves to run around in the grass and explore around rocks and bushes. I think to myself that it must be amzing to see something new for the first time in your life, everyday! There are two rocking horses and she can sit on them by herself and wiggle away although I stand pretty close by in case she gets a bit too excited and falls off. She's becoming more and more independent everyday and needs her mommy a bit less all the time :-(




Some of her favourite things:
1. Elmo
2. Peaches
3. Juice or water in her cup
4. Waving
5. Books
6. Teddy and Eddy
7. Tubby-tub
8. Singing
9. Bananas
10. Ice cream
11. Wagon rides



'Til next time,

August 15, 2009

Half-Birthdays and Airplanes

I'm starting this post about our afternoon rather than the morning because that's the way the photos uploaded....

Colin and I decided to visit the Wings Over the Rockies museum this afternoon. It's located at the old Lowry AFB here in Denver and since it's so close to home, we should check it out. What else are we going to do this afternoon?

There were lots of Air Force planes and helicopters since the start of flight so it made for an interesting afternoon. Isla, however, enjoyed the children's play room the most as she was held "captive" in the stroller and couldn't run around freely. We also learned our girl is NOT into airplanes at all but I can't say I blame her. Colin enjoyed it and it was small break from the ordinary.







Now backtracking to this morning.....
I belong to chat room of other February 2008 moms. We have daily discussions about the goings on in our daily lives and how the little ones are sleeping or not sleeping and that sort of mommy thing. Someone on there had the brilliant idea to do gift exchanges for birthdays by picking names through Elfster.com. Since the first birthday exchange went well it was decided to break the year up and do one also for the 18 month birthday and the theme this time around was Bedtime - pj's and books!
Isla received her "buddy gift" last weekend already but I had to wait until the 15th (this morning) to open it even though her 18 month birthday isn't until Monday. I had as much fun this morning as I did on her 1st birthday and I think she did too!

Opening her gift - she's starting to get the hang of ripping the paper!
Checkin' out her buddy gift - pj's and a book.
She LOVED the book, can you tell?
... and you can't have a "birthday" without cake, right?

Good fun!
She's 18 months on Monday so I'll post more about then - you know I will.... ;-)
Not much else going on around here so enjoy your weekend and have a blessed Sunday!

'Til next time,

August 14, 2009

The Toddler Contract

I read this in the July '09 Parents magazine and couldn't stop laughing!
Enjoy!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Dear Mom and Dad,

Thank you for your interest in remaining my parents. Below is a list of my demands.

The Toddler Contract

I. Food

1.)For breakfast, there will be only milk in my sippy cup while I am watching television (see section II.)

2.)From breakfast until what you probably call lunch, I will be provided with an unending supply of cookies. No arguments.

3.)For lunch I will eat yogurt. Anything containing fruit on the bottom will make me pick it out and throw it on the ground or else throw it up on your carpet.
a. So no fruit on the bottom.

4.)From lunch until dinner I will enjoy having something to lick. Why not a lollipop? Why not seven?
a. Between licks, I may place my lollipop on your grandmother's Turkish rug. This will be ok with you.

5.)For dinner I will have macaroni and cheese. Any attempts to give me vegetables in addition to the macaroni and cheese will result in tears.

a. And don't you dare hide anything in the cheese sauce, because, how you will rue the day.

6.)After dinner you may provide me with ice cream.
a. No frozen yogurt. Trust me, I know the difference.

II. Television

1.)The TV will be on all the time, unless I say differently. You are to sit by my side, quietly, hands folded in lap, while I watch my shows.
a. You may arise to fetch me a snack.

2.)No diaper changing or pleas to engage in physical activity will be tolerated during the watching of television.

3.)Turning off of television will result in much kicking and screaming.

III. Toys

1.) There will be many.
a. They will always be strewn about the house so that I may simply reach down and pick up a toy, no matter where I am.
b. They will be loud, complicated, and contain many small pieces. I will enjoy shooting noises that go w-shoooop! or zim zim zim.
c. Nothing that results in any type of learning, please.

IV.) Friends

1.)They should be available whenever I'm in the mood to use someone else's toys or ingest someone else's cookies.
a. These friends may not ever so much as look at my toys or cookie supply.
b. Ever, ever, ever.

V.) Sleep

1.)Is when I say, where I say, and how I say. If I want to sleep upside down with my legs locked around your neck, then that's how it will be.
a. And you will enjoy it.

VI.) Affection

1.)Occasionally I enjoy being hugged and kissed. I stress occasionally.
2.)I will not be pelted with wet-mouthed assaults on an hourly basis. Should you feel the need to hug or kiss, you must provide me with a written request.
a. And then Wait for me to provide my pudgy cheeks.
Signed:__X___________



'Til next time,

August 13, 2009

FREE Photo Book



If we actually did something this summer other than sit around the apartment or working all day, I would be interested in Shutterfly's FREE photo book.


It's $29.99 value and all you pay is shipping and handling so a pretty amazing offer if you ask me.


I have made one of their books before and they are lovely. There are loads of sizes and shapes to choose from (limited to $29.99) making each book unique.

If you are interested and want more detail go to their website http://www.shutterfly.com/photo-books/everyday-8x8-photo-book. At checkout put the code SUMMERBOOK in the code box.

This offer is on until August 26, 2009.




'Til next time,

August 12, 2009

I hate it when that happens....

I just wrote a big long post and when I hit the publish button, I got an error message. I hate it when that happens!!! Perhaps I shouldn't re-write it, I'll think about it.

In the meantime, here is a little bit of sweetness:

'Til next time,

August 10, 2009

Daddy's Girl

The weekends include alot of Daddy and Isla time. I'm handy to have around when Colin isn't, apparently. Colin left the apartment this weekend and she started bawling her eyes out and came running to me. I guess it's my role to be a comforter.


During the week when he is home from work he has started the habit of knocking on the kitchen window to announce that he is home. If you could see her face when she sees him, it's priceless! To say that she is a daddy's girl is an understatement.

But I'm not jealous, even when she won't give me an eskimo kiss (nee, nee as she calls it) after rubbing Colin's nose without fail everyday. Oh no, not me! I get to have her all to myself all day. Of course there are times that I would love to just go out on my own but 99% of the time, I love our time together.
Just this morning we enjoyed our coffee break on the balcony together. I had coffee and she enjoyed her cup of juice while wearing her favourite hat.
Going back to a previous post about the size of her head, the hat she is wearing is size 3T - 4T - the size of a 3 year old! Anything smaller will be too tight by winter. Just to prove it's the Black genes, Colin bought a hat at a market a few months ago sized XL. The sales lady thought he needed a M and it sat on the top of his head. She couldn't believe he had such a big head!
The little lady has been waking up early the past week or so and not going back to sleep after drinking her milk as she usually does. We love sleeping in but those days are truly gone now. We take turns getting up with her and this past Saturday Colin was up with her while I got to enjoy an extra hour or so in bed.
By the time I got up he had her dressed and her hair done. Check out this do:
He slicked her hair back with his hair gel!!
Oh the poor child! I couldn't leave her with him for even a weekend. I would hate to see the state of the apartment or her hair and let's not forget how he dresses her!
I'm good for something else, doing her hair. This is better:

It's funny how everyone thinks she is a female version of Colin because I remember a photo of my mom about this age and she has exactly the same expression on her face.
Mom, do you know which one I'm talking about? I wish I had it to scan in but you'll just have to believe me!
Today we are enjoying the lovely summer weather. It's about 80 degrees, sunny with a gentle breeze. Does it get any better than that?
Enjoy your day and God bless.


'Til next time,

August 5, 2009

More independent every day... sigh....

My baby is almost 18 months old and everyday is showing signs that she is getting more and more independent.

Just yesterday she went down the slide all by herself...

Oh sigh, and then she went on the horse by herself and wiggled away..

I understand to some readers you're saying to yourself, who cares, but this is my BABY and she's doesn't need me for EVERYTHING anymore...
Pretty soon she'll be asking for the car keys.... sighhh...
Until then, I think I'll take her shopping this afternoon and push her around in her stroller, just like a baby!!!


'Til next time,

August 4, 2009

She's happy and we know it!

YAY!

Isla has finally gained the weight back that she lost a couple of weeks ago while she was sick. I was beginning to think she would be stuck at 21.4 lbs. forever but we weighed her yesterday on our bathroom scales (I HATE that thing) and she was 22.7 lbs.

FINALLY!

I'm hoping she'll crack the 23lb. mark by her 18 month birthday in a couple of weeks.


Out of curiousity, I checked her height and weight against the "average" 17 month old. Her weight puts her at the 36th percentile and she grew a bit taller and is now at the 63rd percentile for height. I haven't measured her head because it's usually in the upper 90th percentile - she has that big Black head that's full of brains!!!


Honestly, she started life small (5lbs 4ozs.) and has always grown out her own rate so I've never followed or even really cared about percentiles. She is who she is, petite, and I don't compare her to other kids because we know she's healthy and developing right on schedule.

Anyways, we love our munchkin as she is and these days that is loud. WOW - she has a lot to say, most of it we have no idea what she is going on about but we can certainly hear her.
Here she is telling me who is boss - check out the hand on the hip!!!
Each time she visits the vaccination clinic she gets a book. On the last visit she got a book called, "If you're happy and you know it" and it includes different actions to the song.
For example, "If you're happy and you know it.....
.... kick your legs!"

"If you're happy and you know it...
... hide away!".


She loves it and is so proud of herself for learning new actions and it's so cute to watch her!



'Til next time,

August 1, 2009

What to do with crazy hair?

OK, so when I take the piggies out of Isla's hair at night, this is what I'm left to contend with:

W-I-N-G-S

I remember having the same problem as a kid. These days my hair is falling out in clumps but that is to be discussed in another post when I feel up to it.

What do I do?

Her hair is getting so long it's starting to fall into her eyes and the only way I can keep it out of her eyes is to tie back in piggies. Thankfully she doesn't seem to mind too much. Hair clips are not an option. I don't know why, ask Isla.

BUT since her hair has been growing quickly I was thinking of getting her hair cut in the near future and cut in the bangs (or fringe for those who call bangs, fringe) and to even the rest of it out. Yes, her first "real" haircut!

But should I?

Should I get her bangs or should I just tie them back with piggies?

ummm, I might have to sleep on it a bit more but I'm leaning toward a "real" haircut with bangs.

What do y'all think?



'Til next time,