Wednesday, September 12, 2012

A Real Ghost Town!

When we were in Snowmass, we took a drive to find something interesting to see.  And by that I mean not so far Addy would throw a fit in the car, not so far a walk that we couldn’t get there with two kids, not too cold, but give the girls something to do, all at the same time.  I’m easy to please, right?

We took a winding road up the mountain side toward a little ghost town called Ashcroft.  It was a ways up (about 10 miles out of Aspen), but a gorgeous drive.  The trees had just started to change colors so the hills glowed with the yellow aspen. 


The girls were glad to get out of the car (even though it was only 10 miles, it’s mountain driving- and took almost an hour to get there) and took time to stop and smell the flowers.  Literally.DSC_0184

The “trail” was made for little legs- flat and even, the girls loved the walk.  DSC_0187

Mostly, anyway.DSC_0189

And after some sisterly love time…DSC_0204

…we were ready to go!  …to the <<ahem>> saloon.  DSC_0209

It really was a perfect place to take them- I was very hesitant to take Piper somewhere she would wear herself out too much (she was still only working on about 70% of her normal after her tonsillectomy, and she needed to go back to school on Monday!), so the little walk for them and the pretty drive for us was a win-win.

Piper did peter out about half way through and got the seat of honor.  How cute is this???DSC_0222


And, really- look at this view.  Gorgeous, yes?DSC_0229

In the end, though, Addy was less than impressed.  It’s really unfortunate for her that she’s so cute when she’s mad.DSC_0225     DSC_0227

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

River Walking

Last weekend, we got to go on a mini-vacation to Snowmass (just outside of Aspen) with our friends.  It was so perfectly relaxing, calm, and cool.  9000 feet cools things way down- we needed it! 

On Sunday, we ventured out, drove toward town, chose a random road and headed up the mountain side.  We found a pull-off close to a calm spot in the river.  I was raised river-walking- if you pass a river that you can put your feet in, you put your feet in.  This was the perfect time for the girls to have their inaugural dip.  So we pulled over, stripped the girls of their pants, and dipped in.

They did not think it was the perfect time for the inaugural dip (see “9000 feet,” “cool,” and “pants-less” above) and not-so-politely informed me that it was wicked cold water.DSC_0173

I had to walk in the water about 10 feet to get to the sunny-and-calm spot that was safe for the girls.  Admittedly, my feet ACHED by the time we got there. 

Addy didn’t mind too much, surprisingly, and probably would have been willing to wade deeper into the water if I had let her.  Instead, I kept bringing her back to the bank- she signed “water!  water!  water!” over and over again.  I don’t think she knew that water existed in such quantities (yes, this little river that was less than a foot deep is BIG for us who live in the middle of Colorado.)

river walk 2

Piper wasn’t very thrilled with it and was marginally willing to stand on the warmer-ish rocks in the sun.  She did not see what was supposed to be fun about this little trip.

river walk 1

Learning to play in the frigid mountain streams requires that you slowly build up your endurance and pain/cold threshold.  We’ll be back. 

…but not until it warms up again!


Monday, September 3, 2012

Last Sprinkler Day of Summer





Addy’s Teether of Choice

Addy’s currently cutting her top two molars.  And she is not impressed.

She was having a meltdown at the grocery store the other day (we’re talking we’re-leaving-because-you’re-being-so-naughty kind of meltdown) but calmed down instantly when I put down a red bell pepper as we were leaving.  Hoping that her tantrum was simmering, I kept shopping with her on my hip.  The peppers were 3/$1, so I was digging through the rather large stash of them to find some good ones.  I turned around to get a sack and realized that my daughter was chowing down on one.  And the little ol’ ladies who grocery shop at 10am on a Thursday were all laughing at me.

Crunching.  Biting.  Devouring. 

What one year old loves bell peppers?  And me, being the stellar parent that I am, let her keep it.  It kept her quiet.  We could get the groceries that we desperately needed.  And I’m sure that my fellow shoppers appreciated the quiet.  And since it didn’t have to be weighed, what did it hurt, right?

She was orange from her eyes to her belly button by the time we left.  She was so happy. 

Fast forward to yesterday when Luke wanted those mini bell peppers they sell at Costco.  They were on the floor with the rest of the Costco haul when Addy saw them.

And salivated.

And begged.

And pleaded.


I have no idea where this kid came from sometimes.  I didn’t like peppers until I was in my 20’s.  What’s next- pickles???

This Week at School


Piper starts her second week of school tomorrow.

So far, we can tell that she’s learned:

  • a song about a bunch of animals.  Since she “sings” by signing, I have no idea how the song sounds.  We really only know that it’s a song because she sings about the same six or eight animals, in the same order, over and over again.  While dancing.  It’s on my list to ask the teacher for a copy of the CD tomorrow.
  • that, apparently, in order to eat your snack, you first must unfold the paper napkin, smooth it out nicely on the table in front of you, and gingerly place your snack on top.  She’s even insisting on having a napkin to smooth out and put under her plate at meals. 
  • how to make a new friend- her sign for her is “pretty.”  How cute is that???  …I haven’t been able to figure out who it is yet, though.  I just hope it’s not a boy- she’s too young for that, right?
  • that everyone in the class will have a job each week.  They haven’t assigned jobs yet, but I’m pretty sure that she must be the unofficial snack helper.  She’s getting very good (and adamant…) about helping portion and serve food and pour drinks.
  • that wearing a backpack is fun.  She’s far better at keeping her backpack on that I thought she’d be.  She asks for it before we leave in the morning.  She doesn’t like when we drive (we usually walk) because she has to take it off to get buckled in.
  • that she’s definitely still not back on her feet after surgery.  It was particularly obvious when she fell asleep at school on Thursday morning.  Poor kid.  We’re hoping that this week brings a better rested, better feeling Piper.

I can’t wait to see what’s next!

Sunday, September 2, 2012


Addy is 15 months old.

I have no idea what color hair she has.  But there’s little I’ll be able to do about that until she gives up and lets the stuff grow.

I also have no idea what color her eyes are.

My best description is blue-grey-green, but that’s not exactly an option on official forms.

Just for fun, what color is this??? 


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Anything you can do… Part II







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DSC_1749 (2)

Best Laid Plans…

When we scheduled Piper to get her tonsils out, I knew it wasn’t going to be fun or particularly easy.  I knew that.  But we’d just watched one of our little friends do it with absolutely no issues whatsoever, so I had hopes that maybe, just maybe, it wouldn’t be such a big deal.  I counted on being there for two nights (the mandatory one seemed a little optimistic); I did not expect FOUR.

AugustPracticing with her mask.  Our buddy, Brie (Child Life Specialist extraordinaire), came in and showed Piper what was going to happen and what Piper’s job was going to be.  Then she put fruity chapstick on the inside of the mask so that it smelled good for the anesthesia.  Piper had plenty of time to practice with it while we waited, and even let her baby try.  When it came time to do it for real, she was awesome- laid down on the table, held the mask on, and off she went.  It. was. fantastic.

Those would be the last smiles we saw for days.  Until Addy came to visit- that seemed to make her pretty happy.  I’m not sure who enjoyed it more!  Addy squealed.  They hugged.  And kissed.  And Piper finally, finally, cracked a smile.P1170558


Piper didn’t drink for four days.  We were finally discharged on a “diet” of jello and half melted popsicles- and even that was very minimal.  They turned her IV down to half over the nights and left it off all day.  Nothing.  They gave her a dose of steroids (surprisingly, even though she hadn’t moved much at all and was wobbly to stand, even on day three, she was still capable of throwing a pretty impressive ‘roid rage in the hospital room.  Cripes.) which helped a bit, but did little more than perk her up.  They changed her pain meds and doses, but getting her to swallow the junk took at least two adults.  She had a humidifier on her bed.  She couldn’t sleep and absolutely wouldn’t eat.  She kept signing “hurt” and saying “ow ow owwwwwwieeeee” hour after hour. 

It was a really fun week.  But at least she didn’t have any major issues; it was just a matter of convincing her to sleep and eat and drink.  I’m certainly thankful that there were no complications, but good grief.  I give major, major kudos to you mamas that always have a fight over eating.  Seriously.  You all deserve a vacation, I’m sure.

So Piper got to go home on Sunday (surgery was on Wednesday) and spent the next four days at home- not moving, barely drinking, and me pleading with her to get the antibiotics and pain meds down.  I was pretty sure that she was going back to the doctor on Tuesday because she was not drinking; thankfully she had some that afternoon and saved us both the pain of another IV.  She even had to miss her meet-the-teacher at school.

Now we’re another week into it all and she’s getting close to being her old self.  She’s still down about a pound and a half, and she’s still really tired.  In fact, she even fell asleep at school on Thursday morning.  Poor kid.  But she’s mostly eating and drinking now, and she’ll even take some Tylenol on her own accord if she’s really hurting.  AND she took an over two hour nap this afternoon for the first time since before surgery, so hopefully that’ll help, too.

But, on the positive side, I swear that her voice is already more “open” sounding.  Her articulation of vowel groups (like the “ow”, “ah-ee”, etc) is way more clear than it was before.  She’s still really swollen from what I can see when she lets me look, but that’s got to start getting better.  I finally gave up on the medication and decided that she could have it if she didn’t fight it.  She went about four days without anything, but has, in the last few days, decided that it actually does help and asks for it a couple times a day.  I figure that’ll help the swelling, too, and she definitely sleeps better when she’s had some during the day. 

I’m just thankful that they won’t grow back.  Or shouldn’t grow back.  At least it’s unlikely that they’ll grow back.  And if they do?  She’ll be older and can take care of herself.  Or I’ll accidentally buy a plane ticket for the same week.  That’s fair, right?DSC_1755