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Monday, August 29, 2005
We had a very busy, but very productive weekend, the first in our new home. My totally awesome best friend, Manders, came over with her boyfriend, Dean on Saturday and painted my house for 3+ hours. And she volunteered to do it! Amanda, Dean and Kris got the whole downstairs, stairs and hallway upstairs done.

Saturday night, we went to Kris's friend, Chris's house for a BBQ. Annika had a lovely time running around the yard playing with (and chewing on) the dog's toys. Do you think we could distract her with her own toys? Or other non-toys that weren't slobbered on by dogs (like water bottles?) No. She wanted the dogs balls and stuffed animals. It sure was nice to only have to drive 25 minutes to their house though (also in the south metro) then it would have been to drive the hour from our hold house.

Yesterday, Kris and I got every other room in the house painted except for the office. John and Michelle came by with Salix and Acer to visit. Then they took Annika for an hour shopping at Target.

We also got a few boxes unpacked this weekend, mostly kitchen things. This week will be busy with more unpacking. I'm so glad we have most of the painting done. Now we can move in our furniture and not have to worry about painting around it. We may just get this all done in time for Annika's birthday party.

Tonight, Auntie Krystle and I are going shopping to find a pretty dress or outfit for Annika to wear in her 12 month photos. There is just so much to do!

Posted by Kristina at 8/29/2005 08:06:00 AM

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Friday, August 26, 2005
Annika is adjusting to the new house fabulously. She's even slept in her room (on her quilt on the floor since her crib is still in the PODS) the past couple nights, giving me a 4-6 hour stretch of solid sleep.

She's such a smart little girl too. We were watching Dusty & Kim's dog, Babe, a couple days this week. We kept Babe in the laundry room while we were out. After coming home from the grocery store on Wednesday, I asked Annika where Babe was? She walked over to the laundry room door and started hitting it while looking at me, as if to say - "He's in here Mommy." Oh my God, she is such a little doll.

Annika's sleep habits have greatly improved over the last couple months. She usually goes to sleep around 8pm and wakes for the first time around 2am. Then she wakes again around 5am and finally rises for the day sometime between 7:30 and 9:00am. I get up between 5 and 5:30am for work, so essentially, I am only waking once per night!

Last night Annika and I went to a CAbi party. It's a home party that sells high-end clothing. I loved, LOVED all their pieces. Unfortunately, with the finances being tight right now with the new house, I couldn't buy anything. I'm contemplating having a show of my own so I can get the clothes at a discount. I always feel frumpy in my current wardrobe. These clothes make you feel fabulous. Oh, how I wish I could upgrade my wardrobe. Someone should nominate me for TLC's What Not To Wear. I would totally give away every piece of clothing I own for that show. Well, almost everything anyway.

Posted by Kristina at 8/26/2005 07:31:00 AM

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Tuesday, August 23, 2005
We're homeowners again! We closed on the house yesterday. After some drama and stress, the real work begins. :) We still have to finish all the painting and putty all the nail holes before we can really move in and settle to life as normal. Of course, then comes building the deck, installing a fireplace and finishing the basement.

I have lots of Annika news to share. Let's start with the bad and get that out of the way. Annika fell down a half flight of stairs last week. It was at Dusty and Kim's house. Babe, the dog, had run upstairs to our room. There were toys on the floor that Babe likes to play with and chew on so I was trying to get him back out. Being the terrible mother that I am, I left Annika unprotected and when Babe came shooting out of the bedroom, he knocked her over and she fell down the stairs. Other than getting a scare, she was just fine. She didn't have a bump, bruise, red-mark, nothing on her. I, however, cried like a baby (which in turn made Annika cry more). I think we've all recovered from the incident. Annika before me, of course. She was back climbing on the stairs and loving up the dog within 30 minutes.

Annika is finally growing some hair! She has a patch on the top of her head that is getting longer but all over her hair is about an inch long. It's light brown/blonde like Kris's but is also tinged with red too. I'll be excited when she has hair but she also won't look like my baby anymore. She'll look like a little girl.

Annika loves her green vegetables. One night last week her dinner consisted of lima beans, green beans, peas and a couple carrots. She wasn't interested in cheese, crackers, or anything else.

Annika loves picking things up and giving them to people. Last weekend while reading the Sunday paper, I took out the Best Buy ad and gave it to Annika. Then I told her to give it to her Dad. She actually walked over to her Daddy and gave it to him (a little crumpled). That's a neat trick girl! And quite handy too. :)

Annika turns 1 year old on September 7th! We're having a small party for her on the 10th. I have a whole bunch of ideas if anyone wants to get her something. :) I'm having her 1 year pictures taken on Labor Day, September 5th. And she has her 1 year doctor appointment on September 8th. She has to get yucky shots that day.

My baby doll has found her nose. And she likes sticking her finger up it. She looks pretty funny with her finger in her nose but of course we still tell her yes, that's your nose and to take it out and then we turn around and snicker.

Last week, I gave Annika some food that was a bit too hot. I blew on it before setting it on her high chair tray. She thought that was pretty cool so she tried blowing on it too before eating it. She's done that few times since, blowing on her food before eating it. I wonder if I could get her to blow out a birthday candle at her party? That would be too cute.

Aunt Carrie flew home on Friday to surprise Uncle Dusty for his birthday. We all went out to dinner Friday night. I was worried how Annika would do being up so late past her bed time. She did just fine at dinner, being the ham and attention hog that she is. She also went to bed fairly easily that night. Saturday, Kris and I were gone most of the day painting at the new house. When we got back that afternoon, we were told Annika was a crab most of the day. She was fine when she was with Kris or I but that night whenever other people wanted to hold her, she was a crabby girl. Well, except for Aunt Kim. She really likes Aunt Kim. Kris thinks it's because Aunt Kim has dark hair like Mommy.

Sunday, we had our 3rd playdate with Mommy's work friends. This time Daddy's and other siblings were invited too. Lisa and her family brought their jumpy thing (similar to this one) for the kids to play in. Annika had a blast! I really want one for at our house. We could even set it up in the basement during the winter. Lisa said she got theirs at Mills Fleet Farm and the reason they got the one they did was it was big enough for an adult to go in too. It only took 10 minutes or so to set up and another 10 or so to tear down. I want one!

Last Thursday I got a call from the National Bone Marrow Donor Registry. Did you all know I'm on that? Anyway, they said I was a possible match for someone. It's in the very early stages and they just wanted to make sure they had updated contact information. If the early testing goes well, I would be called in for more testing (more blood samples) and if that goes well, there is even more testing before a possible donation would be made. This is the 2nd call I've received. The first came in November of 2003. Less than a month later I found out I was pregnant with Annika so I had to call and tell them. They put you on an 18 month hold. Guess my 18 months is up. They didn't tell me anything about the possible recipient this time. Last time it was a 36 year old woman with Leukemia needing a transfer. Ok - gotta go.

Posted by Kristina at 8/23/2005 08:43:00 AM

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Monday, August 15, 2005
I wanted to write more last week. I really did! I even had a running list of stuff I wanted to tell you. It was just a very busy week. Sit back for a long one as I rattle everything off.

These are all about Annika. I'll tell you about the house at the end.

1 - Annika likes to look at her board books. She sits on the floor with the book in her lap and opens the pages and looks at the pictures. Sometimes, when she can't get the pages open, she gets frustrated. She'll try and try then put the book down, scream at the top of her lungs, pick the book up and try to open the pages again. Man, is it funny to watch this little itty bitty girl get so frustrated that she screams. Of course, as soon as she calms down, she gets the book open and is all happy smiles again. Girl has a temper! I think I'm in trouble.

2 - Annika and I have a new game we play. It's the chase, scoop, kiss game. Annika runs away from me, I chase after her saying "I'm gonna get you!" then I scoop her up and smother her with kisses. Then I set her down and off she goes again, looking back at me the whole time waiting for me to come get her. This game is lots of fun and full of giggles and kisses. It's my new favorite game.

3 - A follow on to #2 - Annika now officially runs. I can't believe it but she does. Of course, she'll get going too fast and fall on her face, but she can fun.

4 - Annika is a dramatic little pooper. I'm sure you all want to know this but for posterity's sake, I'm writing it down. Annika literally squats and grunts and squishes her face when she poops. I'm hoping (crossing my fingers) this means it will be easier to potty train her but for now I just snicker, ask her if she's pooping and then change her diaper.

5 - Annika has become pretty proficient at the stairs in the last couple of weeks. She prefers to go down the steps on her butt but can also do it on her belly. I'm still nervous when she's on them and am always near by but she needs me to be there less and less. The only thing is you have to make sure she sits at the top of the stairs. She still wants to walk down them like a big person sometimes.

6 - Annika has started screaming. She screams when she's happy, she screams when she's mad. She screams for no good reason but to scream. The screaming drivers her father crazy. He hates screaming, even if in fun. Too bad Daddy!

7 - Annika has clapped her hands for months now. Late last week, we were playing on the floor and Annika started clapping so I clapped a couple times. Annika clapped again so I did. Then Annika walked over to me, picked up my hands and clapped them together as if to say - Mother - don't stop clapping. She's done this to lots of people now - clapped their hands for them. She's such a smart little girl! :)

8 - Late last week, Annika also started figuring out her shape sorter. I was putting the round block in the round hole over and over again and pretty soon Annika took the block from me and put it in the round hole too. Now I need to teach her all the other shapes.

9 - Annika's interest in books has grown too. She's always liked to look at them and eat them, but Thursday, she brought a book to me as I was sitting on the floor, sat in my lap and wanted me to read it to her, so I did. Of course, her attention span is very short so she was done in two pages and was off playing again. I thought it was very cool though.

10 - My funny little girl was being silly last week and started walking with her head tilted to her left side. She doesn't do it all the time, but every once in a while she'll tilt her head when she's walking and playing. It must be a totally different view when you do that. It sure looks silly.

11 - Annika's tub toys are usually on the floor just outside the tub. When giving her a bath, I start the water and throw in the hippo tub thermometer. Then, as I'm gathering items, Annika throws her toys in the tub, one by one. After the toys are all in, I have to make sure Annika is undressed because she tries to climb in the tub after them.

12 - Saturday, Annika started kicking a ball. Her Uncle Mathias was kicking her plush, small soccer ball around the living room. Annika saw that and started walking and kicking it too. She's since done it with other toy balls as well.

13 - I've started "beeping" Annika's nose. I say "I'm gonna get your nose" and then "beep, beep, beep" it while pinching it. Annika thinks it's great fun and sticks her face out so I can get to it.

14 - Uncle Mathias won a bean bag chair at the county fair last weekend. Annika thinks that chair is the greatest thing. The chair is pretty full of beads right now since it's new. I'd lay Annika on the top of the chair and then roll it back and forth. She'd also back up to it and plop her butt down on the side of it. I think we might have to get her one.

15 - Annika's summer clothes are getting too small. Of course, with it being almost the end of summer, I don't want to go buy her more. So, she's walking around with her belly hanging out the bottom of her shirts. I'll buy her some new fall clothes for her birthday (short and long sleeve shirts, long pants). Annika's shoes are also getting too small. I have to go buy her size 4's already!

16 - Yesterday, Annika went to her first parade. It was a long one - 2 1/2 hours! Annika sat through almost the whole thing, mesmerized by the floats going by. She hasn't sat still for that long in months! We got a ton of candy and Grandpa Dan fed Annika two tootsie rolls and a couple Dots. She thought they were yummy.

House stuff: Friday, we had our initial walk through. There is a bunch of little stuff that they need to fix and a couple big things. The wall in our living room has a significant bow in it. We didn't notice it until they put the trim on. So, they have to rip a two foot hole in the sheetrock from floor to ceiling and fix that stud. They also have to fix a leak in our basement. Our basement has been wet in one area the whole time. We've repeatedly told them this and they keep saying the final grade will take care of it. Well, the location this wetness is won't be fixed by a final grade. We're waiting to find out what they're going to do about it. Don't worry - they will do something. Of that, we will make sure. They also have to putty all the nail holes in the trim. They tried to tell us that was our responsibility since we are doing the painting. Um since when is trim work and painting the same. We checked all our plans and checklists and no where does it same trim work. We'll make sure they get that done too. Then, there's a bunch of little things that need to be done. Closing day is just one week away!

Posted by Kristina at 8/15/2005 07:56:00 AM

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Monday, August 08, 2005
Happy Monday to you all. Two weeks until closing day!

Saturday, Kris, Annika and I were out at the new house. Kris was doing some finishing work (installing in-ceiling speakers and transitions between wood and ceramic floors). Annika and I played until Daddy was ready to take window measurements with us. Annika and I went for a walk, played on the newly installed carpeting, went shopping and played on the newly paved driveway outside the house. Annika fell on the driveway and skinned her knee. It didn't seem to bother her though because she got right back up and started running after her toy (a roll of masking tape!).

Saturday night we had dinner with Grandma Lona and Grandpa Dale, Uncle Dusty and Aunt Kim. Happy Anniversary Grandma and Grandpa! Annika was an angel all through dinner. I was worried how she would do. Our dinner reservations were for 7pm and usually between 7 and 8pm is when Annika starts getting tired and fussy and needs to go to bed. Before we left Grandpa Dan's house to head to dinner, Annika was throwing tantrums because she was tired and needed a nap. She didn't nap on the way to dinner, but did rest quietly. I guess that was all she needed. She ate and played all through dinner and was just great. She even made these really goofy faces by sticking her tongue out. Then, she fell asleep in the car on the way home. I was so happy.

Yesterday, we spent the day at Grandpa Dan's house. Annika and I took a nice long nap together in the afternoon. I was exhausted for some reason. Yesterday afternoon, Annika was playing on the floor. She does this rocking thing where she gets on her butt and rocks back and forth on her tailbone. She even makes a "whoa, whoa" sound when she does it. It is just adorable. Anyway, she rocked back a little too far and toppled over on her back. I laughed at her and she looked back at me and smiled. Then, she got up and started rocking again, only to tip over again. I laughed again and she looked back and smiled again. Pretty soon, she realized that tipping over was fun and started sitting up and then falling back on her back over and over and over. Each time I laughed harder and harder. She liked it too and sat up one time just to sit there and chuckle at herself. :)

Posted by Kristina at 8/08/2005 01:26:00 PM

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Friday, August 05, 2005
There's not much new going on at the moment. We're finalizing mortgage things for the new house and setting up the utilities. I can not wait to move into our new home. Two weeks from Monday is the closing day! I think I'm going to go to the house this weekend to take window measurements. I'd like to order blinds early next week so we don't have to do the sheet thing too long.

Sunday, Annika turns 11 months old. 11 months! My baby is going to be 11 months! I have been asked more than once in the last week when the next one was coming. A co-worker even asked yesterday in a very direct and straightforward way. I told her and now I'm telling you, that we don't plan on trying until at least summer 2006 (after my 30th birthday) and then we'll see. Don't you think that's an awfully personal question to ask of a co-worker though? And it's not like this co-worker and I are friends outside of work, we just work on the same project here.

We found a new favorite food of Annika's: cheese filled pasta (tortellini or ravioli). She had some earlier this week in a Lil' Toddlers package and loved them. At the grocery store on Wednesday we bought a couple packages of the refrigerated DiGiorno pasta's and she gobbled up the spinach and cheese tortellini's as if they were the best thing she's ever eaten. We also bought a container of blueberries and she's munched a whole bunch of those already too. Annika also loves her green vegetables (peas, green beans, lima beans, etc.). And last week, while stopped for lunch on the way home from vacation, Annika ate a whole bunch of cottage cheese. I hope this trend of healthy food loving continues! She also likes spicy foods and they don't seem to bother her tummy (think raw onions or spicy stir-fry). Basically, we feed Annika anything that Kris and I eat (with the exception of the not-before-1-year-of-age foods). The nice thing is this forces us to eat healthier too because we don't want to feed our baby girl crap! :)

Posted by Kristina at 8/05/2005 02:51:00 PM

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Tuesday, August 02, 2005
Saturday we had a big family reunion for Grandpa Dan's family. All 14 of the brothers and sisters were there and most of the cousins were too. Annika had a great time. The reunion was at a park so there was a playground, covered picnic area, ball field, etc. Annika spent the day walking, walking and more walking around the park, with someone following her to make sure she didn't get in trouble. She also played with the small rocks cushioning the play area. And by play, I mean eat. We were constantly fishing rocks out of her hands and mouth. She did ride on the swings, the merry-go-round and the rocking horse though and thought they were all great. There were other little kids at the reunion so she had fun playing with them too. She even had her first kiss! My 2nd cousin's child, Caleb, just turned one. He came over to Annika, grabbed both sides of her head, leaned in and planted a kiss right on Annika's mouth. It was hilarious. Then, Caleb's older sisters, Ann & Beth, who are 2 1/2 year old twins thought that was a fun new game so they came over and kept giving Annika kisses. We finally had to break that little game up as Annika was being swarmed with kids and kisses.

That night, Kris, Annika and I headed to the Vixen's first home game of the season. They lost, but it was still fun to see everyone again.

Sunday Kris finished the last of the ceramic tile work. I'm sure he's very happy to be done with that job. While he was doing that, Annika and I went to Brianna's 1st birthday party. It was a fun afternoon although Annika did want to help unwrap Brianna's presents. She was getting tired by that point and when I'd take her away from the presents and try to distract her with other toys, she'd throw a fit. She's arch her back and scream as I picked her up. Ah, the joy of my life. :)

Annika is learning more and more each day. She now likes to give things to people. She'll pick up toys and bring them to you. Then she'll take them back before giving them to you again. She also is learning to go down the stairs. She thinks she's a big person and can walk down them so you still have to sit her down and then she'll scoot down on her butt. You still have to watch per pretty carefully though as she does still stumble from time to time. She fell of the bottom stair Sunday night and hit her head on the baseboard. She didn't break the skin but she did get a nasty white welt. It's all gone now and didn't even bruise. She's one tough kid I guess.

We don't have much planned for this week. I can't believe it's August already!

Posted by Kristina at 8/02/2005 07:57:00 AM

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