Sunday, February 9, 2014


I had to do a whole separate post for Christmas because there were so many good photos. While Josh skied at Mount Bohemia, I brought the girls to see Santa at the same place as last year: the Chassell Heritage Center. Willow acted about the same as last year. She wasn't shy at all, but she couldn't seem to think of an answer when Santa asked her what she wanted for Christmas. Last year she said "a bear and an airplane". This year she said "a bear and a car". Pretty much the most generic gift ideas imaginable.  Funny. I even prompted her beforehand to try to get her to think of something to ask Santa for. 

After seeing Santa, they had cookies for kids to decorate. 

This was our Christmas to stay in Houghton. It was nice and relaxing. Christmas Eve, we went to see the movie "Frozen" with my parents. Willow loved the movie. Then we all went to our house for homemade pizza. Willow put out cookies for Santa and also sprinkled some magic reindeer food outside. The reindeer food was a gift from aunt Jill. 

Christmas morning was fun. Santa's big gift to Willow was a red barn for her horses. She also got the bear, and some matchbox cars.

Seda got into the action a little as well.

We did our usual tradition of delivering meals for Little Brothers, and then we went sledding at the Hancock Finlandia sledding hill with Scott, Sharon and kids. 

Then we went over to my parents' house for Christmas dinner and some gifts. Willow got some more horses for her new barn. 

Here's Seda and grandma with one of Seda's gifts. 

Once Christmas was over, it wasn't really over. Grandma Jean, Grandpa Jack and Janna came up a few days later. This is what our tree looked like after they unloaded their car. Willow was practically hysterical with excitement...let the spoiling begin!

For the most part we were able to spread out the gift-opening over the length of their stay, so we didn't have to have an hours-long gift opening session. Here's Willow opening one of her bigger gifts- a horse swing. We'll hang it outside in the spring.

Here's Seda modeling a balaclava that Janna made her. 

Seda and papa.

Willow looks a little strange here, but this is the only photo I got of Grandma with the girls.

Sunday, February 2, 2014


During the fall and into winter, Willow took swimming lessons at the SDC. She passed the "preschool" class. They said she could take it again if we wanted to before moving her up to level 1, so we did that. So, she passed the preschool class twice. Here she is with her certificate. :) She really enjoyed swimming lessons, and I did too. Even though I'd have Seda, she'd usually fall asleep, and the 40 minutes or so that I spent sitting on the bleachers in that warm pool room was always the most relaxing 40 minutes of my week. I could even read a book if I wanted to!

Willow got into taking a sauna after swimming with some of the other girls, which got her into saunas. A true Yooper! She's tough too, and can stay in for a long time. Here she is in the sauna at Grandma and Grandpa's house.

After swimming ended, Willow started ski lessons! She started off with the 2-day "Christmas Ski School" at Mont Ripley. Her very first day, as I was getting her ready, a guy from the Gazette came and took our picture. We ended up on the front page:

Here she is on her first day getting ready to join the "first day beginner" class.

Towards the end of the first day, getting the feel for it. We didn't really feel like she figured out how to snowplow those first two days. The third time she skied though....well, you'll have to wait for the January post to hear about that!

Here she is in the chalet having a hot chocolate after a long day of skiing.

We also went cross country skiing once or twice in December. This was before she got into downhill's yet to be seen if she'll still enjoy nordic now that she can rip it up on the slopes. She made it about halfway around the dog loop - much farther than she ever made it last year.

The whole family went, and Josh and I took turned holding Seda / staying at Willow's pace, and doing loops at our pace. It worked out OK.

Meanwhile, Seda spent December working on her crawling technique. She really got it down by the end of the month.

Here's a picture Linda took of Seda looking very proud holding her own bottle. I'm still going strong pumping twice a day at work, but I'm nowhere near the milk machine I was with Willow. The best part about pumping is that I share an office with Mariah who is on the same pumping schedule as me, so we just close our office door and put up a sign. No need to go down to the pumping room and lose all that productivity. I feel very fortunate, since I know that many women don't have such an ideal situation for pumping at work.

Here's Daddy and Willow moving snow. It just won't stop snowing this year!

And sisters in their red jammies.