Friday, October 31, 2008

Leafy Fun!



A few months after Lily was born I joined a newly formed moms group called "The Adventure Moms." They host two activities a week (from playgroups to park times to hikes and various other little adventures). Lily and I try to make it out a couple of times a month. Well, last week we hosted an Adventure Moms Leaf Pile Party at our house. After weeks of raking we had a pretty big pile for the kids. We had 7 other moms and their kids join us! It was a little brisk that day- but the kids (and moms) managed to enjoy the leaves and the outside for about an hour. Thankfully Joe had a wonderfully warm fire going for us in the wood stove so we moved the party inside for some more fun and cupcakes!:) Good times with the moms! I have to confess though that these pictures aren't from the leaf pile party (I meant to take pictures, but I was a little too busy chatting with other moms and making sure the kids stayed out of the street). These pictures are from a few weeks ago (at just the beginning of our leaf pile). There is barely a leaf to be found on our trees now and the pile has made its way to our garden for mulch. Fall will quickly be winter...crazy! Hope that you have a Happy Halloween!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Now That I Can Post Video Again

video video

Now that I'm finally able to post videos again I thought I would share these from a few weeks back. This is Lily and her cousin Brenna- as you can see they had a blast the last time they were together. Sorry that the lighting is so dark (it was dark in the room that day plus I'm shooting these with my little digital camera- so the quality isn't so good). Enjoy anyway!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Conversations With Lily

video

Lily is finally saying a few words. And although she isn't putting words together yet- she has conversations with us, herself and anyone who will listen daily! I had to capture this on video so that someday when she is having conversations with us in words that we can understand I won't forget how adorable this was when she was speaking her own little language!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Test Results

I got the results back from my MRI yesterday- and everything is fine- I officially don't have cancer or anything along those lines. As you might imagine Joe and I are greatful and relieved. It feels like this has been a long process so I am beyond greatful that this is the end and not just the beginning. I am happy that we followed through on all the testing that the doctors recommended- and I would encourage any woman to do so (even if it means having more tests than might see necessary initially). I was very pleased with the level of care I was given by all the doctors here- and by how seriously they took my concerns (maybe even more seriously than I did). I think that says a lot for the doctors here (at least the ones I saw). Thanks so much for all of your prayers and words of encouragement- it has meant a lot to me.

Friday, October 24, 2008

My Day!

Our painted pumpkins and carmel apples

G-Pa painting

Lily finger painting her pumpkin



Grammy and her polka dotted pumpkin


Lily and I "picking" pumpkins




Feeding Goats!

video
Check out this video of Lily feeding the goats!

Our final full day with my parents was my day! We started the day with a trip to Starbucks (Coffee for us and whipped cream for Lily). Afterwards I had planned to go to a pumpkin patch to pick pumpkins. Unfortunately, due to the drizzly cold weather, we decided once we got there to abandon the patch and "pick" ours from the ones already at the farm stand. Oh well, we'll save that adventure for another year! The best thing though at the orchard/pumpkin patch was that they had goats you could feed. As you can see from the video Lily was just thrilled with feeding the goats- she probably could have stayed there all day. So much fun! Our afternoon was spent painting the pumpkins we picked out. The four of us (me, my mom, dad, and Lily) each painted our own pumpkin (Joe had to work so he couldn't join us)- it actually was a lot of fun! We rounded out the day by celebrating my mom's birthday (just a few days early) at Olive Garden (my favorite)- and came home to make some delicious carmel apples (chocolate drizzled and sprinkled with chopped up candy). What a wonderful day if I do say so myself! So, that covers each of our "days." If you are wondering where Lily's day was- well basically every day is Lily's day!:)






Wednesday, October 22, 2008

G-Pa's Day!

G-Pa & Lily

G-Pa rising out of the leaves!


Chickens!

Being chased by the goose!


Look what we found near the monkeys!


You can't really see them here, but Lily and I took a photo near the donkeys (they are Joe's favorite)

The 3rd day was my dad's and he decided that he wanted to take Lily to a zoo. Unfortunately there aren't a lot of zoos in Maine- and there are even fewer open this time of year. But Dad found The Acadia Zoo. It was really more like a wild animal sanctuary (most of the animals had been rescued from harmful environments)- and most of the zoo is seen through a guided tour. We had our own private tour (we were the only ones there) and our guide was great. It was interesting to hear the stories behind each animal. I think by and large our favorite was the monkeys (these little tiny things that could jump incredibly fast)- they were facinating to watch. I think that Lily's favorite, however, had to be the chickens (probably because they were free roaming and didn't seem to mind her chasing them a bit). She was also rather fond of the goose (who wasn't so fond of us). After the zoo and lunch we headed back home. The afternoon was filled with fun in the leaf pile- Lily just had an absolute blast- being buried and having others(G-Pa and myself) buried too. She laughed so hard. We finished out the day with dinner at the Bear Brew Pub (one of my dad's favorites here). Good day G-Pa!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

MRI

Today I had an MRI done- at the request of the specialist I saw last week- to follow up on a lump that my doctor found in my breast this spring. My mammogram came back clean, but with my age the doctors wanted to make absolutly sure- thus the MRI today. I'm not too worried and the doctors don't seem to be either, but it will be nice to know for sure (finally) in a few days. The test itself went pretty smoothly -they did have to stick me twice for the IV- and I got a big crick in my neck trying to lay still for the whole test- but other than that it wasn't too bad. And have you ever noticed that when someone tells you to breath normal that then all you can think about is breathing (and thus you don't breath normal)? Well, I sure would appreciate all your prayers- that the results would be accurate and clear and that they wouldn't show anything dangerous. I'll update in a few days!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Grammy's Day!

Enjoying a snack on the trail

My Little Family


Cupcakes!

Grammy, Lily & G-Pa by the last Cache

On the trail to a treasure


Our First Find


Treasure by the dam

Restocking the cache


On our second day my mom (Grammy) got to choose our activities. So, for the first time we all went Geo-Caching! Basically, you go onto the Geo-Caching website to find coordinates for various "caches" around your area. With Joe's GPS we followed the coordinates to a location (all of ours were in the woods)- and once there you looked for the hidden cache (all of ours were in ammo boxes). In the box were various little gifts left from the last person who found it. You take what is in the box and then you leave little gifts (like candles, play dough, braclets, etc...) for the next person. On this day we found 3 caches (and I should add that I was the first one to find all 3 of them- apparently I'm a pro)!:) It's sort of like a treasure hunt. It was a beautiful day to be in the woods and even Lily enjoyed the hikes (as long as we didn't forget her milk or a snack)! In addition to Geo-Caching mom made us a homemade German/Polish meal of stuffed cabbage roles (they were- interesting, but not bad)! She followed it up with some delicious spice cupcakes (decorated for the holidays). We ended the day with a movie rental. Thank goodness we got plenty of exercise to burn off all the cupcakes! Good day Grammy!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Joe's Day

Grammy & Lily

Joe hunting partridge (you can sort of see his blaze orange hat and coat)

Since my parents were only here for 5 days this time my mom decided that each person would get one day to make their day and choose the activities for the family. It actually turned out to be pretty fun! So, our first full day was Joe's day. And as a result the 5 of us went partridge hunting! We drove around some back roads in Clifton "hunting" partridge. Unfortunately, this was Columbus Day (a holiday) and apparently many other people had the same idea- thus we saw many more people than birds. We did see two on the road and Joe jumped out of the car with his gun- but no luck this time. So, we didn't get any dinner- but we did have quite the little adventure driving through some pretty sketchy dirt "roads" in my parents rental car. We saw some beautiful trees with amazing colors and we finally (after being quite lost) found a bluff that Joe was trying to scout out for rock climbing. The day also included a tasty lunch at Gov's (one of our favorite local resteraunts), indoor rock climbing at the YMCA (which my parents just watched), and pizza and football for dinner. Not a bad day!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Cousins!

Trying to give cousin Brenna a hug!

Cousin Lacey

We spent last Saturday with Joe's family (his parents and his brother's family). Lily got to meet her 6 week old cousin Lacey for the first time! She was very curious about Lacey when she first arrived (asleep in the carseat), but as soon as Lacey was awake and being held Lily sort of lost interest (which is better than the screaming and crying she's done every other time I've held a baby around her)! But, after dinner Lily and her cousin Brenna (just 3 weeks older than her) had an absolute blast together! They must have spent close to half an hour running and chasing each other in between the spare room and the living room. It started out with Lily chasing Brenna trying to give her a hug- and Brenna running away from her. It quickly turned into a game where they would take turns chasing each other (with an occassional hug or tackle from Lily)- and they were just laughing, screaming, and cracking up the whole time! I had some cute video of it, but after many attempts to publish it here I've given up for now (don't know why it won't work this time)- maybe I'll try again when I have more time. Ahhhh... aren't cousins great!

Friday, October 10, 2008

The Bog Boardwalk!





A week ago Monday (our day off) we took Lily on her first trip to the Bog Boardwalk! It's a beautiful boardwalk system going through a bog in Orono/Bangor and since it was finished a few years ago Joe and I have really enjoyed visiting there from time to time. It's especially fun to visit throughout the seasons and watch things change. As you can see fall is a gorgeous time of year to visit. And, I might add, it is actually really great for toddlers. Since the whole trail is raised boardwalk Lily couldn't wander off- she just happily followed the trail. And this time of year she was loving all of the leaves on the boardwalk- and probably could have spent hours throwing them off the side and dropping them through the cracks (as you can see in the picture). It was just a beautiful afternoon. And then my wonderful husband treated me to lunch at Olive Garden- perfect! And as I type this we are officially on fall break!! We look forward to this well earned rest each fall (4 whole days off)! And this break we are looking forward to a visit from my parents (who fly in on Sunday). We leave tomorrow morning to spend a little time with Joe's family in Southern Maine- and then we'll meet my parents on Sunday!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Prayer for U-Maine

Yesterday was the National Day of Prayer for Campus Crusade. Literally thousands of Campus Crusade staff and volunteers were praying all over the country- I always just find that so encouraging! Joe spent hours in the morning and afternoon in prayer with our staff team- and we were able to host a prayer time at our house last night for our Lifelines leaders. We are really praying that the Lord would soften the hearts of the students here as only He can do- and that He might bring spiritual renewal to this campus (and this state). Please pray with us to this end!

AB&J

Lily had her first AB& J (Almond Butter and Jelly) sandwich the other day! And as you can see she seemed to enjoy it (in addition to creating a huge mess)! She's really more interested in eating the almond butter and jelly off the bread than she is in eating an actual sandwich!
The skunk update is that our house seems to be mostly smelling back to normal. We scrubbed it down (literally) for two days- washing just about everything that could be washed on the first floor of our house. Indy's head is still a little smelly (but Joe just gave him another good spray down with the vegetable enzymes- so hopefully that will take care of it). The giant foam sack, however, still seems to be the general souce of the slight lingering sent. We washed the cover- and the foam sack itself has been airing outside for over two days now- so hopefully that will do the trick! I never, ever would have guessed that getting rid of this smell would be so hard! But, the house needed a good cleaning before my parents get here (on Sunday) anyway- and my mom can't smell skunk (wish we could say the same for us)!:)

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Skunk!

Uggghhh- Our dog, Indy, was sprayed by a skunk last night at 10:30p.m.! Needless to say it was the last thing we wanted to deal with right before bed. And the worst is that Joe let him in the house before he realized that he had been sprayed- and before Joe could get a hold of him he managed to roll on the carpet, our huge suede foam bean bag chair, and Lily's parachute toy! Joe spent over half an hour bathing him with dish soap and a mixture of baking soda and peroxide. It seems to have mostly worked- now it's just the rest of our house that stinks! We put the suede cover to the chair and the parachute outside for now- and now I'm just trying to deal with the carpet and the general stink (it seems to have penetrated everything)! It's not nearly as bad as last night, so I am greatful- and thanks to my dad (who makes candles) I have many candles burning throughout the house. This morning I also got some vegetable enzyme spray that worked wonders when Indy rolled in rotten fish a few years back- so hopefully it will do as well with skunk! Joe is on a big hiking trip with a group of freshmen today (they left around 4a.m.)- so hopefully by the time he gets back tonight the house will be smelling somewhat better! Good thing for Indy that we love him!:)

Friday, October 3, 2008

New Fall Colors!


Maybe I was inspired by the beautiful changing colors of the leaves (it is gorgeous here now), but I thought I was due for a little color change too! So as you can see I'm a bit blonder than normal! My friend Tessa gave me blond highlights last night- and although it's not quite the right color for me- it is fun! So, I'll probably keep them until I get my hair cut in November and then have it changed back to something more natural, but it's fun for now! And one thing I never noticed until I was really looking at these pictures (especially the first one) is that Lily has my exact eye color! I new she had my eyes in general (since Joe's are hazel), but I always thought Lily's were a little darker (more steely blue/gray) than mine- but apparently this was one part of her coloring she got all from me!:)
Hope you are enjoying the beautiful colors wherever you are!