Saturday, February 27, 2010

Powered Up!

At last our trusty steed has been put back into its barn where hopefully it'll rest for quite sometime before we need him again. Not that we had it bad at all because we didn't.. The full house transfer switch really paid off! We were living large and other than the cable/internet being out, it allowed us not to be affected at all by the power outage, running water, warm showers, heat.. glorious! Although about 42 hours or so of no power OR cable was nothing compared to the '08 ice storm when we were all holed up pretty much in one room in front of the pellet stove at Grammy and Grampy Chirco's for 5 days. That... ahem.. interesting event (not the company, but the close quarters and no warm water for showers!!) was what prompted this whole upgrade/home improvement activity this past fall! It was however rewarding that we got to use it so soon after purchasing it! Not like the first year we moved in when we had 3 GIANT snow storms before we even hit Christmas, shovelled them all, decided it was the worst and bought a snow blower, then it didn't snow much more than an inch at a time the rest of the winter! But I digress.... as usual.

Friday night we had a date with the Sevins for Chinese food before we knew the power would be out. It worked out well since we probably would have had to order out anyway great foresight Kelly!! It was delicious! And the kids played together very well, hardly hearing a peep from them!

With no power/internet Rob broke out the craft book Santa brought us this winter Friday while I was at work. This is Caden's TV.. and obviously with no cable, Brendan was the most interesting thing on TV for the evening!

It was a great evening with friends until...

... 3:15 AM when our Carbon Monoxide alarms started going off. We weren't quite sure what to do... tried calling the non-emergency numbers for the fire and police department but got "all circuits are busy" and busy signals.. so we ended up calling the Fire emergency line. The LFD responded promptly, the levels were high enough that we had to evacuate the sleeping children to the car outside in the driveway and they then ventilated our house with all the windows open and a crazy powerful fan. In the end it turned out the generator was exhausting a little too close to the house, so the CO level slowly rose throughout the day and night.. nothing too serious, and the levels while necessary to evacuate were not deadly at the time. But I am VERY happy we had those CO detectors! The firefighters were super nice, the boys were very excited by the whole thing. When we woke them up and brought them downstairs to bundle up and they saw the firetruck out the window they were beyond impressed! The firefighters told the boys to come visit the station, so we'll definitely have to take them down to see their home base!
Three Cheers for the LFD!!

Surprisingly the kids went back to bed easily even though it was about 4:30 when all was said and done and safe to go back to bed. Rob and I both figured they'd be up for the day!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Cora.. a year in review!

A year ago this past Saturday at 3:19 AM, just 3 hours and 19 minutes past her due date.. In 64 minutes from start to finish, Cora was born at a whopping 10lbs 10oz! She was born with dark brown hair, Wow! we thought! she'll have dark hair and dark eyes like her Daddy... Nuh uh... her dark hair slowly fell out to be replaced with the blond fuzz she still dawns today! with blue eyes like her oldest brother.

Today Cora is a vibrant little girl who knows what she wants. She is strong as an ox and is already showing her brothers who is boss! She is happy 99% of the time, and the only time she is unhappy is if she isn't getting what she wants (total faker, those tears clear up instantly once she has her way) or is hurt.. it has been like this since birth I swear! easiest baby ever.. or at least of the three.

Cora is teetering on walking! She is very mobile holding onto just one finger, but can only get about 5 steps in before falling on her own.. once she slows down and stops diving head first into the action she'll be running around with the rest of them! Other than crawling she does scootch around while kneeling on one knee.. it's "half-walking" I guess! a very unique way of travel!

Cora is a FANTASTIC eater! She will eat whatever you put in front of her, and often out eats the boys put together... until I should say her birthday.. a switch has clicked and suddenly she has been casually dropping most of her food off of her tray and turning her head to food offers.. what happened? This happened with Cole.. I am hoping it doesn't happen with her! What is it with their 365th day and food?!

Cora is a great sleeper at night... napping however is not her strong suit.. two 45 minute naps if you are lucky, but she is a bundle of energy and apparently is getting what she needs at night because there is no stopping her during the day and it doesn't seem to affect her mood thankfully!

Cora loves all the boys toys, rolling anything with wheels.. but in the past month she has developed a love for dolls too! She gives them hugs.. the best part about Cora hugs whether for people or her dolls is that she pats your back while doing it.. its the cutest, be sure to ask her for a hug the next time you see her!

We still haven't heard any words aside from Ma-ma (still not completely convinced it is me) and Ba.. some times Da although she does have a "s'at" for what we think is "what's that?" and it usually occurs when pointing.. so I guess that is her first word/phrase? we'll keep listening! She does a lot of motor noises which is funny.

So here is a slide show of her first year in pictures... I have torn my hair out for the past two nights putting it together, having to start over 3 times, and almost throwing the computer out the window.. I hope you enjoy! It's about 12 minutes.. I tried narrowing it down to a post with just 12 pictures, one for each month.. but that just wasn't going to happen!

Party Like You are ONE!

Yesterday was Cora's first birthday! My baby girl has grown so much!... but more on her update later.. back to party central.. a fun time was had by all.. or most hopefully! Cora had a sniffle and no nap, which I thought was keeping her subdued, I'm not sure she cracked a smile the whole party! But once all but 2 families were gone she perked back to her normal self smiling and laughing and babbling.. so in hindsight I think she may have just been overwhelmed by the houseful of people!

Cora's party was Princess and the Pea themed... about 1 month after she was born this cake design was in Family Fun magazine, and I knew then that it would be her first birthday cake! My first time with fondant.. it was pretty fun!

Cora with Cousin Casey who is 4 months younger and probably half the size of Cora, it's like she's trying to tell Casey who's going to be boss when they get older!

Uncle Brian was champ at entertaining the kids with their "prizes" from the Princess Pea game (find the ball under the pillow) I'm not sure if I did it wrong or what, but the game didn't go as I'd envisioned! I do think I needed more than two pillows.

One of the prizes that all the kids went after were the rocket balloons.. you blow them up and then let them go and they squeal and squeak flying across and around the room. It was very entertaining for them! Every balloon that was let go elicited the response as if it were the first every time.. Loud squeals, screams and laughter... it was very comical and very fun to watch even if you did wish you had passed out earplugs!

When I bought this crown we tried it on Cora and she wore it for at least 15 minutes... not for the party though of course! That would have been too easy!

(pre-bib which I almost forgot, bad idea with the white dress!) She looks up as if to say for me? really?!

The first taste...

...and back for more

The kids at the table waiting patiently for cake

Present time! Cora was a pro at the gift bags tossing aside tissue paper, card and the contents of the bag! She loves to empty containers. All of her presents were fantastic and perfect! Thank you to everyone for making her birthday a special one!

Maestro Devon provided some entertainment

This picture is great because a.) Cole is actually eating a sandwich! b.) while he isn't paying attention Cora is stealing his chips!

After the party was over Caden collected all of Cora's dolls and him and Cole were pushing them around the room on the folding chairs pretending the dolls were riding a train... below is the baby party Caden set up before going to bed!

Friday, February 19, 2010

PA All the Way!

Last weekend we travelled the 6 hours to Pennsylvania... 6 hours that took 8 1/2 hours, but who's counting?! We are very lucky that for the most part the kids are pretty good in the car and don't even complain too much!

We went to meet new baby Grace! before she left with her family to head back over seas for another 2 years. The boys (and Cora) had a great weekend spending time with their cousins, Aunts and Uncles and of course Dundore and Poobah
The little girls of the family....

A few days prior to arriving Philadelphia had received 48 inches of snow within a span of less than a week! There was much fun to be had in the snow... even sledding on cookie sheets!

(I don't know what is up with Rob's hat either!)

Now we know where Sarah gets her crazy tongue!

Dundore had set up a couple of bowls of split peas for an indoor sandbox.. this provided HOURS of entertainment.. and I am not exaggerating! Cole loved it, Cora liked the feel too! Caden has a rice table at school but I think peas may be even more fun!

The middle three take a tub.. unfortunately I had on my fixed 50mm lens so they all had to be super close together in order for me to get them all in, and this one is the best I got of all of them together, even if we do have some 'D' censoring!
Cora thought she was such a big girl after we put her up on one of the stools, after that whenever we were in the kitchen she would walk over to them and want to get up
We had an early birthday celebration for Cora and Caden... Cora got a Jell-O heart since she's not allowed to have cake until her birthday cake!
Caden patiently waited for his turn...
an Auntie Voo original! Caden knew just what it was as soon as he saw it.. he is totally into Transformers!
I love the hands on his head in this picture! Such a cool cat!

Rob found all of his old LEGOS! The kids were beyond excited..

Cora spent a lot of time leading everyone around.. she certainly knows where she wants to go! She barely needs assistance with one hand, but once you let go she is stubborn and sits right down.

We celebrated Cora's first Valentines Day while we were there!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Happy Heart Day!

Happy Valentine's Day from our house to yours!

Bounce.. Vroom...

Last weekend we went to a birthday party at the Klubhouse.. Bouncy houses, slides, a PlasmaCar race course, tree houses, a wooden boat play structure.. oh my oh my what little boy wouldn't be in heaven?! Even Cora had some bouncy fun! She loved the slide with Daddy.. she isn't sporting a smile here.. they were sliding too fast to capture it! and Caden moved to fast all day so it was hard to get him too!

Cole decided to disobey the rules and go head first.. Caden on the other hand would run and jump up landing half way down the slide on his bum.. it looked pretty fun actually!

Even Rob had fun... this is him at the top of the castle...

Our Monkey-man Cole climbs the rock wall to the top of the castle for a slide

We couldn't get Caden off of these.. they are pretty cool Rob and I thought about getting one.. you move the handle back and forth and it propels you.. super neat!

Looks like Cole is taking tips from his big brother... look at him with the ladies! Caden was Mr. Pouty-face because he did not want to stop playing, but it was cake time so playtime was over.