Saturday, March 31, 2012

Spring Break

This past week was Spring Break in Oregon. Nate had some vacation days left from Thanksgiving that he needed to use before April 1, so he used those days and we headed out to the coast for a few days. (I absolutely love being 1 1/2 hours from the coast!!). We drove out on Monday and came back on Wednesday. Monday was beautiful with blue skies and sun. So we made sure to have a picnic at the beach and let the girls play until they were exhausted.

We enjoy going to Cape Kiwanda in Pacific City.

We expected Tuesday to be a washout since the forecast said there was an 80% chance of rain. We began our day by eating breakfast out at our favorite place, Greatful Bread. It was not a relaxing breakfast. The food was great, but our girls were only content for about 5 minutes. During breakfast Nate and I remembered why we don't eat out at restaurants unless we have grandparents with us.

After breakfast we headed back to the beach since it wasn't raining yet. Once we arrived there was a light drizzle, but the girls didn't mind one bit. The drizzle passed while we looked for seashells and it just stayed cloudy. So we got to spend the entire morning at the beach exploring and playing in the sand. It was cool (low 50's with a breeze), but again, that doesn't stop our girls.

Nate and Sanaa climbed 3/4 of the way up the huge sand hill. If you look at the picture above you can see the sand hill behind Sanaa. Below is a shot of Nate and Sanaa about 1/2 way up. I had to zoom in so that they didn't look like tiny ants. 

Layla and I did not make the climb. Instead Layla splashed in puddles.

A face drawing Sanaa made in the sand.

Sanaa made a friend at the beach and they built a small dam together. Sanaa was very sad to leave her friend (Brendan) and kept asking when we could play with him again. I love how fast she makes friends and isn't afraid to play with any kids that she sees.

Eating dinner at our cabin. We had planned to eat at the table but both girls thought the chair stools and bar area was much cooler to eat at. Even Layla was able to climb up by herself.

After nap time on Tuesday we headed back to the beach. It rained during nap time, but stopped once Layla woke up. So we got to spend part of the afternoon at the beach as well.

Nate and Layla. I couldn't get Layla to look at the camera.

Sanaa and me. Nate couldn't get Sanaa to look at the camera.

While at the cabin we also got to do some bird watching. The cabin was located right on a river that led to the ocean and we could watch the tide go in and out. We also got to watch a lot of seagulls and ducks.

I was continually amazed at how much fun the girls could create for themselves at the beach. Below, they spent a good amount of time sliding down sand hills.

Layla thought it would be a great idea to push the small kids table up to the couch and jump from the table to the couch.

Wednesday was a washout and it poured all morning as we packed up to leave. But we were very thankful that we got to spend so much time Monday and Tuesday at the beach. On Thursday we took the girls the Portland Children's Museum and then on Friday I had a baby check up. Spring break week flew by, but it was a lot of fun!

Friday, March 30, 2012

27 weeks 5 days

Today I had a baby checkup and the 1 hour glucose screening. The checkup went well. Malakai is doing well. He moves a lot and has a strong heart beat. I am currently 27 weeks along (I'll hit 28 weeks on Sunday). The morning sickness that came back is still hanging around. I haven't used any medication this week, which is good, but I still haven't felt the best in the evenings. I've also started having more back pain, mainly on the left side when I walk or stand up. The doctor believes the sciatic nerve is being compressed. She suggested alternating between using ice and a heating pad twice a day. So we'll see if that helps. She also offered to send to me to physical therapy, but I have no idea how in the world I would fit that into our schedule. So, I'm hoping the ice and heat help relieve things. 

As for the glucose screening. I failed that. No big surprise there. I failed the 1 hour screening when I was pregnant with Layla and honestly didn't think I'd pass the 1 hour screening this time either. What I wasn't expecting was to find out the results the very same day. Next week (on one of Nate's days off) I'll go sit at the lab for the 3 hour glucose test. I told Nate I'm kind of looking forward to the 3 hour break. Does that make me weird? I hope I don't fail the 3 hour test, but 3 hours of reading a book or knitting sounds kind of nice right now. 

A 27 week belly shot. We took 5 pictures and I hated all of them. Next time I'll try and remember to take a picture when my hair looks decent. :-)

Do you like the letter S in the picture? That was one of Sanaa's crafts from school. Each kid made a mosaic with the first letter of their name.

Thursday, March 29, 2012


Laundry Day!

As I was doing laundry today, I received an opportunity to make an entry to my ongoing series "Stuff Sanaa Says."

"But Nate! What series? We've never seen one before on this blog!"

True, true. But I'd like to make one, and I'm secretly compiling one in my head.


No, not really. I'm on hiatus. More blogging means less Star Wars: The Old Republic, and we can't have that. The galaxy needs saving after all.

But back on track!

Stuff Sanaa Says! With an awesome addition of alliteration!

In this case, I was folding laundry, and Sanaa decided that it was her God Given Task™ to assist me in refolding Mommy's laundry and putting it away.

Now while one might imagine (and rightly so) that my 3.5 year old daughter very well may be a Folding Prodigy in the same vein as certain Japanese females, the reality is that folding for Sanaa entails bringing the arms of a shirt in, folding the shirt in half, and then rolling the whole thing into a ball that then gets gently placed in the bottom of the closet.

This was amusing in and of itself, but then when Sanaa began attempting to fold Rosa's pants, her comments were as follows:

"Errr... Arrrghh..." *loud sigh* "Umm.... err....." *another loud sigh*  "Wow, Mommy's pants are really big! They're so big!"

Being the sensitive and loving husband that I am, and steeped in the intimate understanding of my wife that only 9 years of marriage and 2 years of marriage counseling can bring, it will be no surprise to any of my devoted readers that I promptly informed her of Sanaa's findings, though I could barely get the words out from laughing so hard.

I'm sure that Rosa definitely took Sanaa's comments in the spirit that they were intended, and that I in no way bruised the ego of a woman in her 3rd Trimester, and I'm sure that we don't need to discuss it later either.

Saturday, March 24, 2012


Earlier this afternoon I received a call from my BSF group leader. One of the gals in our Bible study group just lost her young son. He was roughly the same age as Layla. Yesterday afternoon she found her son in their washing machine. He had fallen in and gotten tangled in the clothes. She couldn't get him out and had to run to a neighbor's house for help. He was on life support all night and they took him off this morning.

I don't know this gal very well but we are both pregnant and due around the same time. She's expecting her 2nd child right now and I cannot imagine what she and her husband are going through right now. It is a mother's worst nightmare. The story was in the paper and Nate happened to read it just as I sent him a text about it.

I think many people may question how this could happen and assume that the mom was being negligent, but the scary thing is that I can totally imagine something like that happening to Layla. I'm very thankful we don't have a top loader for a washing machine because I know Layla would want to see what was happening inside. There are many times during the day that Layla runs off somewhere and it gets quiet (never a good sign). So I can picture Layla pushing a chair (or whatever she found) up to a washing machine, lifting the lid, and peering inside. Toddlers are SO curious and the things that you don't expect to be dangerous are.

Hearing this news today was also difficult because I have been very annoyed with Layla. She has been doing nearly the opposite of everything I say. We got ready to go to the store this morning but Layla started kicking me and throwing a tantrum when I attempted to put her shoes on. When I got their sand box ready for them to play in after we got home, I instructed the girls to keep the sand in the box. Layla repeatedly threw the sand out of the box, threw sand on top of Sanaa, and tried to tackle Sanaa numerous times. When I gave the girls their lunch, Layla smeared her pb&j all over the table, crushed her crackers, and kept trying to put her feet on the table. I have never been so ready for nap time. I know this is fairly normal behavior for a toddler, but enough is enough. I just wanted a break.

Then I received the call and suddenly I was so thankful to have Layla even though she can drive me crazy. I'm so thankful the girls and I can enjoy this sunny day together. I know that this afternoon or tomorrow or the next day they'll do something that will make me mad but I really hope I can keep my perspective and remember that so many of the things the girls do are minor and I'm lucky to be enjoying this time with them. I know the mom from Bible study would love to be dealing with a toddler throwing sand and tantrums instead of mourning over losing him.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Welcome Spring?

According to the calendar, Tuesday was the first day of spring. Apparently that doesn't matter here in the NW since last evening it started snowing and we woke up to an inch or so on the ground. Now, if we were in the mountains I would not be shocked at it snowing in late March, but we live in the valley where we're much less likely to see snow (even during the winter).

Schools around here were delayed by 2 hours this morning and since Sanaa only attends morning preschool we kept her home. I probably should have called to see if her class was cancelled for sure, but with all the snow Nate and I decided to keep her home and play in it.

Aren't the daffodil's and snow pretty together?

Layla did go down the slide and went flying off the end. Like good parents, Nate and I laughed really hard. She got up and decided to go down a second time, so it must have been fun.

I got Layla to wear her snow pants and she was very excited about them. Sanaa, on the other hand, would have nothing to do with her snow pants.

A mini snowman that Sanaa I made together. Sanaa put the head and arms on. I added the eyes and mouth for her.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Family time

Last week my mom celebrated her birthday but we waited until the weekend to have a mini party. If you mention that it is someone's birthday to Sanaa she immediately expects there to be a party with cake. This was the first birthday of my mom's that I've been around for since my brother got married in 2004. 

So, we invited my parents, brother and sister-in-law (and their new baby) over for dinner and cake. Sanaa was very excited about the cake and basically designed my mom's cake. She was very insistent that grandma's cake needed hearts and flowers. I can't free-hand hearts onto a cake, so we used a small heart-shaped cookie cutter which Sanaa placed on the cake and I filled it in. I put small flowers on the side of the cake and everything had to be in pink (since that is currently Sanaa's favorite color).

For the occasion, we used Nate's grandma's china that we received after she passed away. The daffodil's came from our front yard. We have a TON of daffodil's growing outside our front door. As spring has slowly arrived here in the NW it's been very interesting to see what all pops up around our new house.

Sanaa and Layla love their cousin Ariana. Both girls want to hold/play/entertain Ariana as much as possible. Nate has some good pictures on his phone of Sanaa holding Ariana that I need to get from him. Layla is especially interested in her baby cousin and just had to sit next to grandma while Ariana took a short nap. Layla has started calling Ariana, "Yaya" which is very cute.

On Monday, Nate and I took the girls to the Portland Children's Museum. Sanaa and Layla had a blast! They were so worn out but really wanted to keep playing. It's a great place to go when it's raining. Since next week is Spring Break for Sanaa we plan to take the girls back to the museum, especially since it's suppose to rain most of the week.

Next week I also have another baby check up. I'll be 27 weeks along this weekend. I'm quite ready for this pregnancy to be over, especially since the morning sickness has returned. I think it was about a week ago that I started feeling sick after the girls went to bed and every afternoon and evening since then I haven't felt so well. I still have some of the nausea meds and I've started taking them again. It's just not right (or fair) for the morning sickness to return! I guess the upside is that I only feel sick in afternoons and evenings, so I can at least get stuff done in the morning.

Monday, March 12, 2012

What we've been up to

Last week we had some beautiful weather. The sun was finally out again!!! So we took advantage of it and spent a good amount of time outside. We visited the park one day and on Friday the girls and I went to the zoo. Sanaa has been asking to go to the zoo for weeks, but it's been rainy and cold the majority of the time and we haven't been able to go. This week we're back to seeing lots of rain, but that's okay since we have another busy week ahead of us with lots of errands to run.

While I prepared dinner one evening, Sanaa decided Layla needed a hair cut. Layla sat still for a little while as Sanaa attempted to put a "cape" on her, but that didn't last long. When Sanaa realized she couldn't get Layla to come back she settled for giving her doll a hair cut instead.

I have started doing a lot of crocheting. I made a hat for Sanaa and she loves it! It isn't quite finished since I plan to attach some flowers and/or butterflies to the hat. I also need to start one for Layla now.

Sanaa insisted Nate needed to try on the hat.

I found a yummy recipe on Pinterest for taquitos and made them. The first attempt didn't look very pretty but they tasted good. With my second attempt they turned out great. Nate was very excited I made them since they are some of his favorite things to eat.

I've also been quite busy tagging and pricing all the items I'll be selling at the upcoming consignment sale this weekend. I'm glad the sale starts soon because it'll be really nice to have my dining room back to normal instead of filled with clothes and toys.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

First homework

Sanaa brought home her first "homework" assignment earlier this week. In preschool they have begun to talk about numbers and are creating a number book at school. Her teacher has started to send home number sheets for the kids to trace the number they studied and then practice writing it. Sanaa was very proud of herself for writing and then finished by coloring in the picture. She doesn't have to return the paper to school since it's just for practice but she still enjoys showing her teacher what she's done.

This is the bird feeder that my dad made for us for Christmas. Isn't it cool? I'll hang it up eventually but for now it sits on our outdoor table and the birds quite enjoy it. We typically get a lot of chickadee's at the feeder so when this guy showed up Sanaa got very excited.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Pushed to the edge

I've been playing with the Rose City Flute Choir since October. I had a great time playing with them in the fall and really enjoyed the music. It was challenging, but fun. We took a 3 week break and started back up the beginning of January with our spring season. The director had mentioned that our spring season would be a bit challenging since there were at least 2 songs that were quite difficult.

She wasn't kidding.

I've played the flute for 20+ years but after our first rehearsal in January I seriously wondered what in the world I was doing and if I was out of my league. One of the songs that we're playing this spring is called Over the Edge by Benjamin Boone and that song just might push me over the edge. You can hear the song at this link. The recording is the National Flute Choir playing Over the Edge with Benjamin Boone conducting. Our very own conductor (Phyllis) was one of three bass flutists that got to play this song when they recorded it.  It's a long piece (nearly 10 minutes) and the first time I heard it, my thought was, "Are we seriously going to play that?"

There have been several weeks (and Nate can attest to this) that I've come home from practice overwhelmed and ready to quit. During the first few practices I would get so frustrated as we played the music because we'd get to a part where I had to stop and count the lines above the regular staff just to figure out what note I was suppose to be playing (we're talking high A's, high B's that are 4-5 lines above the staff). I'm not use to playing that high, let alone know how to finger those notes. On top of that, the warm ups were killer. Our director likes to pick out the scales with 4-5 flats or sharps to warm up on and play them as 8th notes or 16th notes. I hate sharps. I really hate sharps.

But despite everything, last night was the first good practice I've had since the beginning of January. I did completely screw up the warm up since we did ascending arpeggios that were in the major, minor, diminished, and augmented keys. What?!?!? I'm not a music major!!!!

I think I'm going to have to start practicing the warm ups now..... But I am becoming a better flute player and getting the challenge I probably needed. I definitely don't enjoy being challenged so much, but I think I will stick with it for now. Plus, several of the flute members have commented that this is definitely the hardest season of music they've played so far and that makes me feel a little better.

If you're in Oregon in May, you'll need to come listen to the flute choir perform. I do hope to get a recording (or two) of our performance in May to have on hand for people to hear.