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Friday, July 29, 2005
I know. I've been gone a long time. We were on a short family vacation from Sunday through Wednesday. Yesterday was just too busy to post. I have a long list of things to share. But I also have work to do and family from out of town to visit so I can't do the extended version. Here are some highlights:

1 - Annika made the funniest face Monday night. She stuck her tongue out the side of her mouth while squishing her nose up. Everyone who saw it died laughing.
2 - Annika is an excellent traveler. She slept the whole way to and from our vacation at Caribou Highlands. Granted, we left Sunday night at almost 8pm so it was almost her bed time anyway. But she slept the whole way home on Wednesday and still went to bed on time Wednesday night. We did a bunch of driving during our vacation too so we could tour this and look at that. Annika was excellent with all the driving and being taken out of her car seat then put back in. It probably helped that Auntie Krystle sat in the back with her for the touristy stuff.
3 - Annika saw Lake Superior for the first time and even got to splash a little in it. She wasn't nearly as impressed by the lake as Mommy is.
4 - Annika ate a rock. OK, it was a small, very small, pebble. But she did ingest it before Kris could fish it out. It was on a beach alongside Highway 61 North of Grand Marais. Silly girl. We left the rocky, pebbly beach shortly afterwards.
5 - Annika went hiking for the first time. OK, she rode through the hills of the North Shore in her Baby Bjorn for the first time. It was a short hike but I think she liked it anyway. I did.
6 - Annika took immediately to our out-of-town relatives. She especially bonded with Grant. He liked her too. I have a couple cute pictures of them sitting in the recliner together. Grant had a bracelet (like the Live Strong bracelets) that Annika loved. Tuesday, while touring Grand Marais, I carried Annika while Annika held Grant's bracelet and Grant walked beside us.
7 - Annika likes sitting on people's shoulders. She also does this cute thing where she leans over to look at your face when she's up there. And being the silly girl that she is, she leans over to her right to look then sits up and leans over to her left. Repeat, repeat, repeat until she's so squirmy you have to bring her down.
8 - Annika loves bottles; water bottles, pop bottles, etc. She loves carrying them around. They can be empty or full; it doesn't matter. She just likes them.
9 - Annika babbles all the time. And she's experimenting a lot with her tongue while making sounds. I think she'll say some actual words here pretty soon. So far, the only thing resembling a word is "yeah". What's funny is that she says this at the appropriate time and with the correct intonation. Like when Annika was eating in her high chair and Auntie Krystle asked if she liked her food. Annika looked up at her and said "Yeah" excitedly while then babbling on about who-knows-what.

Now we're back home and getting back to our routines. The house is almost done! The appliances are going in today and carpet goes in next week. Kris has finished all the tile work except for the base of the shower. He'll finish that this weekend. Tomorrow we're having a big family reunion and Sunday is Brianna's 1st birthday party! Happy 1st Birthday Brianna! (Her birthday is today!)

Posted by Kristina at 7/29/2005 01:52:00 PM

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Friday, July 22, 2005
I'm sleepy. I guess that happens when your daughter wakes up at midnight, 1 am, 2 am, 3 am and 4am and stays up until you finally relent at 5:20 and just get up. Needless to say, I was at work early this morning. I'm guessing it's teeth again for Annika. Her sixth tooth (4 up, 2 down) is just about ready to break the surface and that's usually when her sleep is disrupted. Again, she wasn't crabby or in any obvious pain. She was actually happy and wanting to play this morning. However, Mommy Wanted To Sleep.

Grandma Lona is watching Annika right now. I'm sure she's loving it. She saved the morning for us. Kris had to go into work this morning for an emergency project and I had meetings I shouldn't miss so it was Grandma Lona to the rescue! I'm taking off this afternoon so Kris can go back in if he needs to. I also need to pack this afternoon because we're going on a mini family vacation the first part of next week. Also, our appliances came in and Grandpa Dan is helping us move them from Direct Buy to the house this afternoon. They're installing the appliances next week. The light fixtures arrived this week and they might even be in already too! I can't wait to see the house again this afternoon. It's starting to look like a home now since the cabinets are in and most of the floors are too. Kris is going to work on the master bathroom tile again tonight and tomorrow and then we leave on Sunday. We are so busy! Annika and I have been running errands almost every night. It will be good to take a little break from it all, even if we're only coming back to more work and stress. Say, speaking of stress...anyone want to have a Pampered Chef show? Order products? Mama needs to pay for these appliances! :)

Posted by Kristina at 7/22/2005 09:05:00 AM

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Tuesday, July 19, 2005
Sleeping last night? Much, much better. Which leaves me puzzled as to why am I SO tired today?

The camera has been neglecting Annika lately. It must be the camera's fault too because Annika's mother would never do such a thing. It also has nothing to do with the moving, the house work, the strange living conditions, etc. Nope, it's all the camera's fault. I'll be having a talk with that camera this afternoon to remedy this situation stat.

I'm missing my baby something fierce at the moment. I just want to go home and snuggle her.

Posted by Kristina at 7/19/2005 01:18:00 PM

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Monday, July 18, 2005
Annika is teething. Last weekend one of her front teeth broke through. Sunday, I noticed her other front tooth was poking out. She has one eye tooth already and her other one is just about out. I'm really hoping last night's sleeping fiasco was directly related to all this teething activity or somebody is in big trouble. Annika went to bed fairly easily at 8pm. She woke at 11pm and wanted to nurse. She was restless between 11pm and midnight. Kris came to bed at midnight after hearing Annika crying and seeing Daddy wokr her right up. She then proceeded to stay up until sometime after 4am. Yes, she was up for 4 hours. Kris and I took turns sleeping during that time. Annika wasn't crabby or crying during that time. I think she wanted to get up and play. The only time she'd get mad was when I would lay her back down and she wanted up. Kris said she slept in until 9:30am this morning but that she's been a crab all day. Please let it be teeth so when that 4th top tooth comes in my sweet baby comes back!

We stayed at Grandpa Dan's house this weekend. Saturday night we all had dinner together. Annika ate a bunch and then decided she was done. And she wanted a drink. Of milk. From her mom. So she proceeded to grab me, my shirt, my hair etc. trying to get some milk. It was pretty funny actually. Annika and I excused ourself so she could nurse in private. She's never done that before either.

Annika is learning how to go down the stairs. She can do it both on her butt and on her tummy. Sometimes though, she wants to be a big person and tries to go down standing up while holding on to the railing. Unfortunately, she's not quite tall enough to step down and hold onto the railing at the same time and then she falls. Of course, someone is always right there to help her and we keep trying to get her to sit down. She is a strong willed one.

Kris worked on the master bath shower this weekend. It's looking really nice! He didn't finish tiling and will have to work on it more next weekend. I'm sure the 95 degree weather this weekend didn't have anything to do with that.

Our closing date on the new house has been pushed to August 22nd. They still plan on having all the work done on August 5th but need the extra two weeks to do any clean up work resulting from the inspections and our walk-throughs. Plus, our job foreman is going to be on vacation one of those weeks and they don't do closings on his houses when he's not there. We're bummed about being houseless another 2 weeks but there's not much we can do about it. Plus, we don't want to move in until everything is perfect. I'm just glad we'll be in before Annika's first birthday. I wanted to have a small party for her and it looks like I still can. Anyone want to come help me unpack?! :)

Posted by Kristina at 7/18/2005 02:41:00 PM

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Friday, July 15, 2005
I've tried to get a post written earlier this week, really I did! We're staying at Uncle Dusty and Aunt Kim's house right now and there are tons of new things for Annika to explore and get into. Tuesday night, she crawled underneath our bed and promptly got herself stuck. She kept trying to stand up or get up on her hands and knees to crawl out and would hit her head. I had to help her shimmy her way back out. Silly girl!

Annika loves taking baths. She's started playing more with the water lately too instead of just the toys. She's taken to flopping. Flopping is flopping back into the water and then kicking and splashing like crazy. Then Annika gets up, plays with toys for a bit, then flops back into the water to kick and splash. All the while, she has a great big grin on her face and laughs her head off. It's really great fun. Annika is also testing out putting her face in the water. She oh-so-carefully lowers her face/chin to the water, over her mouth and sometimes her nose. Every once in a while she'll take breath while doing this and get a mouthful of water. Then the gasping and coughing starts. Of course, as soon as she gets her breath back, she's back in the water doing it again. It scares me something fierce every time she does this but I'm letting her explore since I'm literally right next to her at all times. Annika has also learned how to "step" out of her pants. When I'm running her bath water, she stands next to the tub waiting to get in. I usually pull her shorts/pants down and she lifts one leg at a time for me to take them off. It's too cute!

Wednesday we closed on the townhouse. We are officially house-less!

Yesterday morning as I was leaving Dusty and Kim's house, I forgot to turn off the alarm and opened the front door. Yep, it went off and boy is it loud! I rushed over to the panel and punched in the code. Kim came upstairs and the agency called asking if we were all right. Me, I was red-faced, apologizing repeatedly and running out the door, trying to escape my embarrassment, hoping I didn't wake Annika and feeling pretty silly myself. Oh well. I don't think I'll be forgetting about that again anytime soon! Of course, Annika slept right through it. She wakes when I tiptoe out of her room, but sleeps through the blaring alarm! Argh! :)

Our friends Are, Jessie and their daughter Mia are in town for a few weeks. Kris and Annika went to see them yesterday and I cut out of work early to join them. They live in Denmark while Are attends medical school and this was the first time we met Mia. She is an absolute doll! She has these great big blue eyes that are just gorgeous. She's just precious! She's about 2 months younger than Annika and is crawling. She's also not used to babies bigger than she is so she was a little wary of Annika. Of course, it didn't help that Annika took all her toys away from her, fell on her while standing next to her, hit her and was generally just a big bully. Ah, my sweet daughter - is the playgroup hellion! :) Poor Mia. It was so great to see Are and Jessie again. They are just great people.

Last night, Kris, Annika and I met Grandma Lona and Grandpa Dale at the new house. The cabinets and trim are being installed this week. Everything looks great so far. I love it! The cabinets look fantastic with the 4th choice laminate flooring Kris picked out. There are a couple small things we'd like to change but we can do that ourselves after we close. Those workers sure aren't gentle though! We're going to have a lot of touch-ups to do on our paint job!

OK - this post is long enough. Have a great weekend!

Posted by Kristina at 7/15/2005 07:18:00 AM

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Monday, July 11, 2005
My baby is 10 months old! Annika turned 10 months on Thursday. Last week was so busy, I didn't have time to write a post about it, but I did take a 10 month picture, as usual. It's not uploaded here yet though since I need to find the computer cable for the camera. I'm sure it's with us and not in storage, but not everything is unpacked yet.

Annika broke her 4th tooth this weekend. It's her front tooth on her right side, next to the eye tooth that is already through. Her other front tooth and eye tooth on her left side are just below the surface and ready to pop any day now. Teething hasn't bothered Annika too much and these 3 tooth are the same. She's eating and sleeping as usual. She's had just a touch of diaper rash, which one application of Desitin has taken care of, just like the first 2 teething episodes. Annika + teeth = no problem. :)

Last week was crazy! Being on the flip side now though, I'm glad it all happened last week when I had the whole week off without using any vacation days! (Work gives us 3 days off for the 4th plus I had 2 floating holidays I could use.) I still have 7 days of vacation to use the rest of the year.

All the painting and flooring is finished in the house and it looks great. Kris did a fantastic job. I am so, so happy with it. Since he had to work on the house all week and weekend, it was my job to get the house packed up and moved out. Our family came yesterday to help move us out and we got everything done but one last load that we'll get tonight. We close on the townhouse on Wednesday. For 4 weeks, we won't own a home. We close on the new house August 8th. It's going to be a hard 4 weeks though since the places we're staying are not baby-proofed and Annika is one quick little girl! There are no gates, outlet covers or cabinet locks and Annika loves stairs and crawling into cupboards. Kris is going to have his work cut out for him during the day!

Posted by Kristina at 7/11/2005 08:52:00 AM

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Tuesday, July 05, 2005
There is so much going on over here. Hold on for a long one...

Annika has learned a bunch of new things this week. Today, she learned how to open every cupboard door and every drawer in the house. The house that will not be ours next week so why bother installing child-safety devices. It's a good thing most of the cupboards and drawers are empty. One of the first things that happens in the new house will be door and drawer locks. Right now, there is tape holding some of them shut, until I can get them packed anyway. I let her get into the pot and pans cupboard though. She won't hurt or get hurt by them. Unless she drops one on her toe, I suppose. She also learned today how to turn the dishwasher on. She also knows how to open the dishwasher. Great. So, I can't leave the dishwasher unlocked since she knows how to open it and I can't leave it locked since then she can turn it on. I'm screwed. Re-direct. Re-direct. Re-direct. That's how I spent my day today. It's better to re-direct because The Girl HATES the word no, especially when said to her. She is a dramatic one. When I tell her no she flops to the ground and starts crying, with tears. In a perfect world, the house would be baby-proofed and I would only have to tell her no when she was in danger. Alas, the house is half baby proofed and I have to keep a close eye on her. Today, she was playing with my computer mouse and when I took it away from her so we could leave the room she flopped to the floor and cried. I see rough sailing ahead. Isn't this supposed to start with the terrible two's? She is (almost) 10 months old people! There aren't supposed to be tantrums already!!!

Maybe Annika just missed her Daddy. He's been working a ton on the house this week and hasn't been home much. He left this morning before we got up and didn't get home until almost 8pm tonight. Annika trucked over to him right away and wanted to be held by him for a long time. She wouldn't even come to me so he could take his shoes off. She just held on tight to him. Kris teared up a little bit and said "You're going to make me cry." He's missed her too.

Kris has gotten a lot of work done at the house. Unfortunately, the flooring was supposed to be in Saturday and when we called, they had no record of our order and our salesman, Larry was out of the office until today. Turns out that the price Larry quoted us was lower than their cost so the order was never placed. Yeah, instead of talking to Larry, they just never placed the order. Thanks. So now we had to pick out new laminate flooring because they couldn't order the other stuff and get it here in time. We have to have it put in this week since the trimmers are coming Monday morning. Larry felt awful and is arranging for us to get some help installing the flooring free of charge They are also delivering all the flooring (laminate and ceramic tile) tomorrow morning free of charge. We've really liked Larry and once again, he's coming through for us. Kris did all the prep work he could today (backerboard for the tile and such) so that when the help and flooring arrives tomorrow, they can get started installing right away.

There's been some other drama going on at the house. I didn't want to say too much about it until we talked to our job foreman, Jesse. Jesse has been great with all our questions and didn't disappoint again today. Friday, while sitting with Annika on the front steps, I noticed that our garage door was in a different spot than the neighbors whose how is identical to ours. Turns out that our garage door is in the wrong spot! Our house is L-shaped so you drive in the driveway and turn left to get into the garage. Look at the pictures (click on the bunny above to get to my photo album) to get a better idea. Anyway, the garage door is supposed to be approximately 2 feet to the left of where it is. Big deal, right? Wrong. If you look at the pictures Kris took, we'd have to drive over the front step in order to get a car in or out of the second garage stall. If you look out of our garage over to the neighbors you can see where the garage door is supposed to be. Jesse said they'd move it. They will have to take the garage door down, re-do the footings, framing and siding, but they'll re-do it to make it right. There's also some other things we weren't happy with this weekend, namely a few shingles that are lifted and the brick work on the front of the house. Jesse said he would take care of it all. Thank goodness for that. I didn't want to raise hell, but you all know I would have, if needed. :)

Two last Annika things. Annika now gives kisses by planting her mouth on your cheek, leg, belly, etc and sucking. Cutest Thing Ever.

And why do babies/toddlers sleep on their tummbies with their legs tucked up beneath them and their butts in the air? Is it really that comfortable because it sure doesn't look like it!

Posted by Kristina at 7/05/2005 10:05:00 PM

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Monday, July 04, 2005
Happy 4th of July! I hope everyone had a great weekend. I hope you all took a minute to think of those who made/are making this day possible. I sure did.

Yesterday, Annika spent the day at Auntie Krystle's apartment so I could help paint at the new house. Annika had a good time playing and getting into Auntie Krystle's things. The only time she cried was when she was tired and needed a nap. Then, she would go over to the door where she last saw Daddy and I leave out of, go to the corner and cry. Krystle would go get her and calm her down. Annika would then walk back over to the corner, flop down on the floor and cry. Eventually, she was so tired that she fell asleep and took about an hour nap. Poor girl. When I picked her up, she was happily playing although we was asleep within minutes of leaving Krystle's. I brought her down to the new house so everyone could see her but she was still sleeping when we arrived. Uncle Mathias sat with her in the truck while I went in and started painting again. Girl took almost a 2 hour nap in the truck! Then, she happily played with everyone until it was time to go home. We got the whole house painted this weekend too! I couldn't believe it! On Sunday, Grandpa Dan, Uncle Mathias, Grandpa Dale, Grandma Lona, Uncle Dusty and Aunt Kim all came to help us paint! Thank you, Thank you, Thank you to all of them!

Today, I stayed home with Annika while Kris went down to work on the house some more. Grandpa Dale and Grandma Lona came to help again. They finished the last little touch-ups of paint and started working on the flooring. We should be able to pick up the laminate flooring and ceramic tile tomorrow and Kris will be working all week to install it. After working all day at the house, Kris went in to his actual job to get a couple hours in. When he got home this evening, he was dead tired and went straight to bed. Me, I'm watching the town's fireworks from my desk as I'm typing this. Pretty cool, they are.

Posted by Kristina at 7/04/2005 09:53:00 PM

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Saturday, July 02, 2005
My girl is smart. This morning, when we went into the bathroom, I gave Annika her toothbrush to play with while I did the morning routine. After a while she got tired of it and dropped it to the floor. Then, when I started brushing my teeth she looked at me, looked at the toothbrush on the floor and picked it up and started chewing on the bristles again. She put 2 and 2 together. :)

Annika likes looking at her books. She's even smart enough to know how to open the pages. She puts her little thumbs on the side of the book and pulls the pages apart. Granted, she's still not always on the right side of the book, like on the top or bottom instead of the side, but she's still a smart little cookie!

Yesterday, we were having lunch at Applebee's. After the waitress took our order, I ran out to the truck to get Annika a toy and her Cheerios. When I came back in, she was sucking on the lemon that was in Kris's lemonade. She sucked that thing dry and ate most of the pulp too!

Our closing is scheduled for the 13th of July! That's only 11 days to get packed up and moved out, while also painting and doing all laminate floor and ceramic tile work!

Yesterday, Kris and I bought most of the paint needed for the new house. We prepped most of it yesterday and Kris even started priming the walls and ceiling of the second story. We called it a day around 6:45 last night because Kris's shoulders were cramped up from spraying the ceilings and Annika was getting mighty bored hanging out with Mom with no toys.

Today, I'm staying home to pack and Auntie Krystle is coming over to watch Annika. I hope to have box packing almost done today. I'm also going to try and figure out what we need to take with us for the transition weeks when we're homeless. They still plan on having the new house done for our scheduled August 8th closing so we won't be homeless for too long.

Kris is already on his way to the new house. He has to stop for a couple errands on his way (Home Depot again!) but he should be there by 9:30 or so. Grandpa Dan, Uncle Mathias, Grandpa Dale and Grandma Lona are all coming to help us paint today. We are so lucky to have such wonderful, giving family. People - they are giving up a holiday weekend to help us paint our new house. Sound like a fun holiday weekend to you? Yeah, me either. We owe them all big time. BIG TIME. I think that's all that's new around here. Not much really. :)

Posted by Kristina at 7/02/2005 08:16:00 AM

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