Monday, January 31, 2011

January Abbi-isms

(I need to be better about writing these down - I'm not very good at it!!)

After eating a bag of goldfish crackers (while rubbing her belly) - "I feel much better!"


While eating dinner - I asked her if she was going to eat anything on her plate, and she responded "no, thank you!"  At least she was polite about it, I guess...


We got into the car to run an errand, and there was an empty bag of fruit snacks.  She wanted it, but I told her that it was empty, but she still said she wanted it.  I gave it to her, and once she looked inside to see that they were in fact all gone, she responded "I can't believe it!"

Abbi - January 2011

She's unfortunately becoming a bit of a picky eater.  This is what happens when she doesn't want what she got for lunch or dinner!

Playing the drum

Playing dress up - her favorite past time!  (Complete with her Halloween costume, boots on the wrong feet, a sock for a glove, a swimming suit for a hat, and a curtain tie-back for a scarf...)

Putting one of her Dora dolls to sleep on mommy's chair

Mini Photo Shoot

Dress up, once again.  This time with the wings from her butterfly costume from her first Halloween.

Her attempt to take off her pjs...


Throwing snow on herself

Playing in her kitchen with her new apron

Picking up the balloons for her birthday party

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Looking Back

One of my most successful New Year's resolutions for 2010 was to take a picture of Abbi every day.  Every Friday, I posted the last 7 photos.  I've tried these 365-projects before, but have always failed.  But then again, I have never had such a specific subject.  And being totally honest, there were a few times that I cheated.  I know that I accidentally deleted one day, and I forgot a couple of other days, but I made up for them the next day.  So I have 365 pictures of Abbi from 2010.

Now that the project is over, and now that I haven't had to worry about taking a picture every day, I have to admit - I really miss it.  I know it's not logical or feasible to take a picture of her every day of her life, but these 365 pictures have really come to mean so much to me.  I have them as my screen saver on my computer, and I stop multiple times a day, just to watch her face changing.  I can't believe how much change can happen over a year!!

And now that I've had a month to look back on last year, I have realized just how much these pictures mean to me.  Some of them were good, some of them were bad - but regardless, every single one of them means so much to me.  And I know they will mean even more to me as the years go by.  Some have stories, and some don't, but I love that a simple photograph can touch me so much.  So if you are contemplating doing something like this, I totally recommend it!!

I wanted to do some sort of photo collage, but 365 photos - that's a lot of pictures!!  So, if you really want to see just how a little girl grows over a year, I put together a little video.  I know I've already watched it multiple times and cried - I blame it on pregnancy hormones!!

Untitled from Deborah Harroun on Vimeo.

And for 2011... Well, I've already decided that I want to do a picture a day for the little guy when he is born for the first year of his life. But for Abbi, I'm not committing myself to anything, but I have realized how important these "every day" pictures have been to me. So at the end of each month, I'll post all the pictures I have from that month. There might be 5, there might be 25 - no restrictions, I just want to make sure I'm still taking pictures and recording her life!

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Abbi's 2nd Birthday Party

I want my children to grow up knowing they are special, and that their birthday is a special day.  I debated about what to do for Abbi's birthday this year - she's still not really old enough to remember things, but I wanted to do something fun.  And the hard part about having a January birthday is that you can't do anything outside.  (Although one of these years, I want to have a snow picnic.  I think that would be a lot of fun!)  And our house is so small that it's hard to do anything there.  So after some discussion with my sisters, we decided to have some fun at Kangaroo Zoo then have a light dinner and cake at our house.

Abbi has been to Kangaroo Zoo once before, and she's been to Jumpin' Jacks a few times, but she's been scared of the "rides".  (For those of you that don't know what Kangaroo Zoo and Jumpin' Jacks are, they are places that have a lot of the big blow up rides/slides/jumping rooms for kids to play in.)  I was hoping that now that she is 2, and is normally so fearless, that she would jump right in and want to play.  She talked about going for weeks before her party.

But no such luck.  All she wanted to do was play in the little 2 and under area that had some little baby things to play with.  I don't know why she was so scared!!

Luckily, the other kids all had fun!

And Abbi had fun playing with Gavin in the little area.  And she was just thrilled to have most of her cousins there with her!

After some jumping fun, we headed back to our house for dinner and cake.  I was a little disappointed in my cake decorating this year.  I wasn't very smart in the first place, and only gave myself about 45 minutes to build and decorate the cake.  And then I decided to do whipped cream frosting instead of buttercream, which wasn't very easy to smooth the fondant over.  So I got lots of tucks - but hey - I tried, right?!?

We enjoyed sandwiches and chips and fruit and veggies.

And Abbi even attempted to eat a vegetable!!

She was so excited to blow out the candles.  She had been practicing for days!

She needed a little bit of help from daddy, but the job got done! 

We had said no gifts, but lucky Abbi had a few gifts to open, which included a new coloring book, a stuffed froggy, and a chipmunks card.

And then from grandma and grandpa, she got a pretty purple tutu and a whole dress up kit, complete with high heels!  She was in heaven!

Abbi was sad when her party was over and can't wait for her birthday next year!!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Book #6 - Magic Study

Magic Study
Maria V. Snyder

Blurb With her greatest enemy dead, and on her way to be reunited with the family she'd been stolen from long ago, Yelena should be pleased. But though she has gained her freedom, she can't help feeling isolated in Sitia. Her Ixian background has changed her in many ways—and her newfound friends and relatives don't think it's for the better....

Despite the turmoil, she's eager to start her magic training—especially as she's been given one year to harness her power or be put to death. But her plans take a radical turn when she becomes involved with a plot to reclaim Ixia's throne for a lost prince—and gets entangled in powerful rivalries with her fellow magicians.

If that wasn't bad enough, it appears her brother would love to see her dead. Luckily, Yelena has some old friends to help her with all her new enemies....
(From Goodreads)

Opening Sentence:""We're here," Irys said."

Length: Medium - 392 pages

Notes: This is book #2 in the Poison Study series.  I liked this book, but I often found myself frustrated with the main character, Yelena.  So many times, I would get so frustrated with her choices and her actions that I almost wouldn't want to read anymore!  But I guess if she would have made the choices I would have made, it would have taken away a lot of the action of the book!  I didn't like this book as much as the first one, but it was still entertaining.

Random quote"Living is a risk," I snapped at him. "Every decision, every interaction, every step, every time you get out of bed in the morning, you take a risk. To survive is to know you're taking that risk and to not get out of bed clutching illusions of safety."

Recommend: yes

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Abbi's 2nd Birthday!

Happy Birthday Abbi!!

I can't believe my little girl is 2! Even though we wouldn't be celebrating her birthday until the weekend, I wanted to make sure and make her actual birthday a happy day.

It started with balloons. I could have stopped there. That's how much this little girl loves balloons! It was worth heading out in the cold the night before, after she had gone to bed, just to get balloons. To see her face light up when she came out in the morning was perfect!

I wanted to do something special for breakfast, but if you know Abbi, all I can ever get her to eat in the morning is toast and bananas.  It's the first thing she asks for every morning.  She doesn't like eggs, she doesn't like French toast, she doesn't like pancakes.  Crazy child!!  But I thought I'd try making her Mickey Mouse pancakes covered with Cool Whip and strawberries.  She actually ate some of the pancakes!  (But mostly she ate the strawberries!)

We didn't have anything planned for the day, but Nanas and Gump Gump came over when Abbi opened her presents.  First up - her present from her momma and dadda:

A princess Dora!  I have to say - after Christmas, I went to lunch with a friend that was in town, and when we were almost finished, a family sat down at the table behind us.  Their little girl had one of these Princess Dora dolls, and since then, that is all that Abbi could talk about.  I was seriously surprised that an almost 2-year old could remember and want something so specific for so long!  But I did love seeing the look on her face.  She was so excited!

Then she opened her gifts from Nanas and Gump Gump:

She got a Dora watch, an apron (with a matching one for mommy!) and a box with 6 Dora books.  Can you tell it was the Dora birthday???

After all the presents were opened, she had fun playing with her toys

and making Nanas read every one of those 6 books to her!

What a great birthday!!!

Abigail - 2 Years Old

Wow - how time flies.  From this:

to this:

to this!!

My little girl is such the toddler.  (And I have officially determined that she is the hardest subject for pictures - this girl does not like to look at the camera!!)

At 2 years old, Abbi:

*Loves to love.  She has such a tender heart and constantly expresses her love for everyone and everything!
*Is a really good talker.  In fact, I think she talks as well as any 3-year old, and even some 4-year olds!  She can speak in complete sentences and is usually really good about expressing what she wants.

*Is such a girl.  She loves playing dress up, loves playing with her dolls and stuffed animals, and loves dresses!  She also loves babies and will get so happy whenever she sees a baby!
*Loves crayons and coloring.

*Is a sometimes good eater.  She loves any fruit, crackers, cheese, yogurt and toast.  She won't eat vegetables, but I can usually get her to try at least a bit of anything else.
*Is finally - at 2 years old - falling asleep and staying asleep in her crib!  For the longest time, she would not go down if I didn't rock her first, then we finally got her to go down in her crib as long as one of us sat in there for 10-15 minutes, but now, I can put her down and walk out.  My life is so much easier!!

*Loves to dance.  Especially while wearing a tutu.
*Loves to sing.  Her favorite songs are probably the Dora song, the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse song, Twinkle Twinkle, the ABC song, and Hush Little Baby.

*Loves Dora and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.  
*Is getting very independent.  She already wants to pick out what she wears every day.
*She loves her grandparents and her cousins.  It's usually a daily thing to hear that she wants to go visit one or all of them!

*Is one of the smartest little girls that I know.  She has been able to count into the teens since she was around 20 months, can kind of say her alphabet and will remember almost anything you tell her. 
*Still is a cuddler, which mommy loves!  When she gets up from her nap, she always wants to spend a few minutes sitting with mommy, cuddling. 

*Loves going to nursery.  In fact, we'll be sitting in church, and she'll usually ask multiple times during the meeting if it's time to go to nursery.  I'm so glad for the great leaders that make her so excited to be there!
*Loves to give loves and kisses!

*Is a big girl - at 31 pounds!  She is mostly wearing 3T clothes already.
*Is obsessed with shapes and colors.  She likes to point them out wherever we go!

*Is quite a character, but I can't imagine her any other way!!

Happy 2nd birthday Abigial!  Your mommy and daddy love you so much and you have brought so much light, warmth and many, many smiles into our lives!!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Library Day

I have been looking for things to do with Abbi to get out of the house every once in awhile.  It's kind of hard in the winter, especially when I'm trying not to spend any money.  Well, we've been to story time at the library a couple of times now, and I wish we would have been going every week!!  There is a lady who comes in - I think she is there the 2nd and 4th Tuesday - that is just so good!  The first time, she was dressed up like Mother Goose and did nursery rhymes and read books about bedtime, and the second time she was a safari lady and talked about animals and read books about alligators.  It only lasts 20 minutes, but Abbi seems to love it!  I let her check out 1 book after.  We need to go more often!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Book #5 - Little Bee

Little Bee
Chris Cleave

Blurb We don't want to tell you what happens in this book.
It is a truly special story and we don't want to spoil it.
nevertheless, you need to know enough to buy it, so we will just say this:

This is the story of two women. Their lives collide one fateful day, and one of them has to make a terrible choice, the kind of choice we hope you never have to face. Two years later, they meet again - the story starts there ...

Once you have read it, you'll want to tell your friends about it. When you do, please don't tell them what happens. The magic is in how the story unfolds.(From Goodreads)

Opening Sentence:  "Most days I wish I was a British pound coin instead of an African girl.  Everyone would be pleased to see me coming.  Maybe I would visit with you for the weekend and then suddenly, because I am fickle like that, I would visit with the man from the corner shop instead - but you would not be sad because you would be eating a cinnamon bun, or drinking a cold Coca-Cola from the can, and you would never think of me again.  We would be happy, like lovers who met on holiday and forgot each other's names."

Length: Medium - 266 pages

Notes:  I don't really know what to say about this book.  It was touching and eye opening and disturbing all at the same time.  It is a tragic story for both girls that the book is about.  It was definitely a little depressing, but then again, the subject matter is not light at all.  I almost completely loved this book.  The beginning chapters especially really drew me in.  But I did have a couple of problems with it.  First - the language.  I should have known, since it is by a British author (what is it with the British and their language???)  And without going into detail or giving anything away, what happened to Little Bee in her last days in the UK - well, it wasn't very believable for me.  I felt for Sarah and her character, and I really did understand most of her actions, but I wish the whole Lawrence part wouldn't have been there.  It was a bit distracting to me, and made me not want to empathize with her as much and made her much less likable.  I guess this is another book that I would love to discuss with other people!!

Random quote:  "We must see all scars as beauty. Okay? This will be our secret. Because take it from me, a scar does not form on the dying. A scar means, 'I survived'."

Recommend: yes

Have you read this book? Share your feelings!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

My Abbi Girl

There are no words to describe how much I love this little girl!!  We went out to do a mini photo session so I could get a picture to do an invite for her birthday party.  And although she is a pain to photograph, I just can't get enough of her!  She is the cutest thing in my whole world!