Thursday, August 31, 2006


I am an over packer. I always have been and probably always be. Mike and I swear every trip back to Sioux City that we will take less the next time, but yet we never do. It's primarily my fault, but I always seem to have a reason. The reason this weekend is the wacky weather. It's suppose to be fairly cool and Ella doesn't have that many fall clothes yet, so I'm struggling with what to take. I also then wonder what if it unexpectedly warms up, then what will she wear. If it's cool in the house at night, she'll need different pjs than if it's warm. See my dilemma. Ugh. It's almost 10pm and there's still so much to pack.

I am really looking forward to this weekend. Outside of just seeing my family, we're going to Art Splash, the best summer festival Sioux City has ever had. I also get my mom's burritos, so very yummy. These are so good, I even remember the first time we ever had them.

Ella has not found dreamland tonight. I fear it may be a very long night in the
Bowling household.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Every year it rains

No cars broke down. No one was stranded on the interstate. Yet, one thing we can't escape is the darn rain. I swear every time we get together for Rene's birthday it rains. It doesn't matter our plans, the rain always finds us and makes driving treacherous. Typically, the rain hits before the evening has even begun, but this year it waited until later in the evening. I foolishly mentioned at one a point in the evening, "at least it's not raining." I knew at that moment I had invited the rain to join the party.

As we opened the doors to depart Tom Fooleries, the steady stream of rain mocked us. We had to dash through it to get to the parking garage. TF was the last stop of the evening, so it didn't matter that we were drowned rats. Although, the drive home was quite an experience. In those times, I always wonder why I don't keep a pair of my glasses in my car. It certainly would have upped my confidence on the drive home.

Only 3 more work days until a 3-day weekend. Yahoo!! I can't wait. We are making the trip to Sioux City to see my family and to celebrate our family's birthday week. My brother Matt is the 6th, I'm the 7th, my dad was the 8th and the day my adopted brother Justin first came to live with us was the 9th. Quite the week for my family!

Friday, August 25, 2006

No Deja Vu please

This weekend is shaping up to be eerily like last year and I'm concerned. Last year, this was the weekend that Rene and I were stranded at 1:30 in the morning on I-70 just east of downtown near Manchester -- not a good place to be. This weekend, we are again planning to celebrate Rene's birthday Saturday night, but this isn't the only similarity to last year.

Last year, Mike and I kicked off the weekend with a Jack Johnson concert at Starlight (we had Mike's work tickets). Tonight, we had Mike's company tickets to a Ben Harper concert at Starlight. (We didn't end up going, rather we gave them back so another co-worker who is a slightly bigger fan that us could take his finance for her birthday.) Then Saturday morning, Mike was off to his fantasy football draft. Tomorrow morning at 10 am, Mike is off again to the same fantasy football draft and Saturday night is once again girls night.

While the overall structure of the weekend is quite similar, I'm confident that the events won't repeat as we've changed a few details. I certainly don't want to tempt fate. First, I'm not taking the car rather I'm taking the Vue. Mike's not driving to the draft -- he's catching ride. We skipped the concert. Ella and I are hopefully having a low key day at home. Please, please, let's hope that none of the cars break down. While it's a memory Rene and I will never forget and one we can now laugh about heartily, I'd prefer not to relive it for amusement.

As for Ella, she's just a joy, nothing makes a long work day improve instantly than her sweet smile and energetic welcome screams. One minor concern is her formula intake isn't where it should be. Last week, her acid reflux was the culprit. This week, it's got to be a tooth bothering her. Her new trick for the week is waving. She's a little stubborn with the amount of waves she dispenses. She first displayed it for me as she waved goodbye to one of her teachers this week. It's a little herky jerky but she gets that arm a moving.

Mike got the little one down rather easily and I hear the shaking of margarita's. So thankful it's Friday.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Hey Mom, don't forget have ANOTHER son who enjoys the Royals too, ya know.

I sure feel special.

Ella's favorite hobby

Originally uploaded by mbowling.
Ella could spend hours in the pool. We hit the pool again this past weekend with Payton in tow. Both girls had a fabulous time. Payton kept asking when Ella would wake up from her afternoon nap, so we could go to the pool. This is the same girl that wouldn't go near the water last summer, even if you bribed her with candy and a toy.

As for Ella, she has no fear of the water, which makes her dad very happy yet causes a sliver of worry in me. I think a little fear might not be such a bad thing. She doesn't even flinch if water slashes in her face. She would probably splash around all afternoon if we would let her. She even tried to crawl out of our grasp and never panicked if her face touched the water. Maybe, we'll be able to squeeze in another trip before the pool closes for the summer.

Another developmental milestone, the girl pulled herself up using the bottom stair. She definitely is a mover and a shaker. There's no taking your eye off her, who knows where she'll go.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Ma Ma

We're continuing to ride this crazy development train. One day after showing off her mobility skills, she tackles language development by uttering "ma ma" and other two syllable sounds. I'm realistic enough to know that she wasn't saying it in reference to me, but the girl has discovered the finer art of babbling.

Another exciting highlight for today was our first Parent Teacher Conference. I chuckled when I was first asked to sign up for a conference time, but in reality it's a great idea. As most parents with kids in child care know, you don't linger at drop offs and pick up times. Inevitably, you are running late to work or you're just want to head home that all you do is grab your child and go home. Another reason is we only have 10 minutes for drop offs and pick ups because of the limited number of parking spots for the daycare parents. While I learn a lot about her day in a few short minutes, you don't have the time to talk long-term development and overall how your kid is doing at daycare.

So how is she doing? Absolutely wonderful. She's a social child who is meeting all of her development milestones. Her teacher Jarrett walked us through their development checklist. We also learned that since Ella is mobile, she'll probably start transitioning to the Lambs room in the very near future. I'm not ready for all this change. I know I have no choice, rather I should just embrace this. Faith from her room will probably move at the same time as her, giving her a familiar face in the room. As Mike and I were leaving, he commented about how happy he is with the center. I must agree.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Right out the gate

A big development in the Bowling household: We have a CRAWLER!! It's official -- not inching along, not scooting. She's on all fours moving each in sequence. I can't believe it.

The worst thing is I missed it. I ran to the dry cleaners. I seriously was gone for 10 minutes max. Mike sat Ella down to move the jumperoo closer to the kitchen, so he could finish cleaning up from dinner. Ella just decided it was time to crawl. Her motivation: YOSHI! She's so fascinated with him. Mike called me immediately on my cell phone. I was so excited, yet I started to cry. I missed witnessing a major development, all for a silly pair of pants.

She did show off her new skill to me once I was home. She's so methodical about every move, but she definitely gets it. I sat there and cried, amazed at her progress and hoping to freeze time, so I can enjoy her more.

My sweet, adorable 6-month-old baby is changing so much. At her appointment on Monday, she was 18 lbs 6 oz and 25 3/4 inches long. The doc again commented on what a happy, healthy baby we have and to just enjoy every precious moment. How, I'm trying.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Holding back and giving in

So, how in the world do you do it? How do you let your child lay there in their crib screaming for love and affection? Its the latest in the saga of Sleep vs. Ella Bowling.

Its the weirdest thing. A couple of weeks ago we were enjoying a good evening routine, we would give her the final bottle for the evening and down she went, and she would sleep until 5:30-6 or so. Then one night she slept good (outside of the occasional wake up and fall back asleep after Mom or Dad comes in and finds my pacifier for me.) She slept SO GOOD in fact, that she didn't wake up until 9:30 in the morning! (It was a Saturday). While Mom and Dad enjoy her sleeping so good, we had no idea that it would signal the end of her falling asleep easy. Since then, she's just been a bear to put down, and we have had to resort to the fun "let her cry it out" and visit her every 5 minutes or so routine. Lemme tell you, its FUN.

I'm very sure Amanda and I aren't the first and certainly won't be the last set of parents to have to go through this. I think the most entertaining part of the whole deal is that every time we go in there, poor Ella is in a different place in her crib! When that girl is unhappy, she is on the move big time.

Hopefully things will get better, and I know they will, it will just take time........hopefully.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Splish Splash

Splish Splash
Originally uploaded by mbowling.
As a couple, Mike and I aren't very decisive people. We're typically starving by time we figure out what to eat. If we decide to eat out, then it's another lengthy process filled with, "I don't know, what do you want."

So today, we knew we wanted to do a family activity, but it took us until 3:30 pm before we finally settled on taking Ella to the Shawnee pool. What a smart decision. We had the best time. With only being there a little longer than an hour, we got our money's worth. How could we not from the lazy river to the water slides and the kiddy pool? Time well spent and wonderful memories created.

Next year, we're so getting a pool pass.

Final note, my little one is only 5 months old for a few hour more hours. How can that be! She's growing up so fast.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Daycare's pool

Daycare's pool
Originally uploaded by mbowling.
Another cute picture from daycare. I smile every time I look at it. I love and so appreciate that they take so many photos of the kids and share them with the parents. The pics also decorate the walls of their room.

Playing well with others

Playing well with others
Originally uploaded by mbowling.
Ella probably didn't get a gold star this day. I don't know how happy Faith was to share this rubbermaid container with Ella.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Chatter Bugs

Here's Ella hanging out with her friends, Surkari and Faith, at daycare. I can only imagine what they're babbling about. Mike joked that Ella's asking about who they plan to draft in the first round of their fantasy football league. Yeah, maybe if it was a group of boys. The photo just cracks me up, seeing her socializing with friends.

A few quick highlights, Ella is definitely moving forward. She is our own little inch worm. It's amazing how fast she's gone from pushing her butt in the air to resting on her hands and knees, to now slowing inching forward. I'm so not ready for baby proofing and baby gates.

She also demands to hold her own bottle at daycare. She still lets us feed her at home, but daycare says she drinks more and doesn't fuss as much if she can hold it herself. She definitely has an independent streak to her. I know where she gets that from.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Water Baby

Water Baby
Originally uploaded by mbowling.
Ella had her first pool experience this weekend. Our neighbor Brooke and her son Tommy invited Payton. Ella and I over for a swim. Ella completely dug the water. Mike couldn't have been happier.

Ella loved to splash her hands up and down, and her legs hardly stopped kicking. She probably spent a good 1/2 hour in the pool in momma's arms just watching the bigger kids play. If our stomach's hadn't requested lunch, we probably would have stayed longer. Ella promptly crashed in an afternoon slumber and dreamt of her water experience for the next two hours. I imagine a portable pool is in our future. One small problem -- no level piece of lawn.

Have another bite Ella

Have another bite Ella
Originally uploaded by mbowling.
Payton spent Sunday with us and as usually provided lots of laughs. She was always asking how she could help or what Ella needed, so she jumped right in at feeding time. She couldn't wait to serve up some peaches to Ella.

Payton and I also had a discussion about why Ella can't do certain things like talk or walk. We discussed how Payton could help teach Ella those things. She then proudly announced that she would also teach Ella about putting on her own clothes, make-up and purses. And yes, this girl is not quite 4. It was too cute.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Happy Girl

I am the mom to just the happiest little girl. She cracks me up. Her smile seriously knocks me over, it just lights up her whole face. She literally beams. I feel so blessed.

Monday (I know I'm slow, but it's been a busy week.) She stayed home with Mike as he recuperated from the long wedding weekend. When I walked in the door and caught her eye, she squealed with excitement that mom was home. Her legs were kicking, her arms swaying. I couldn't wait to scoop her into my arms. I've never seen have that kind of reaction. It was the best. I felt so special, especially since it was almost 7:30. I think she's entering a "I'm a momma's girl stage," and I must admit I like it.

Although, a co-worker of mine paid Mike the sweetest compliment. She said that she's so touched when she sees men with their kids and they seem like true naturals. I couldn't agree more. Mike is so great with Ella. He's always jumping right in and doing anything he can for her, and they do share a very special bond. I imagine it won't take long before I'm knocked off the pedestal. For now, I'm enjoying my position.