Friday, December 30, 2011

First Tea Party!

Wow, our Christmas has been so much fun already....and so busy!  We have been out of town since the 24th, stopped back for a day to regroup, and then head out of town again this afternoon until Jan 2nd!  Our schedule this year included driving 26 hours, staying in 5 locations, driving through 5 states, and seeing multiple relatives!  Summer was quite the trooper and did much better than we anticipated!  I will update you all more next week when I have pictures organized from all of our travels, but for now I will leave you with a few pictures of Summer and my first tea party from this morning.  Grandma and Grandpa Kirkwood gave Summer a little table for Christmas, and Mommy, Summer, Elmo, and Pooh Bear "poured tea", "stirred sugar", and had an all around good time :).

Summer loves to put the lids on and off the tea pot

First taste of pretend "tea"

Serving up tea for Elmo and Pooh Bear

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Baby Christmas Party


This morning we went to a "baby Christmas party" with Summer's friends at LaDonna and Addison's house!  It was so much fun!  LaDonna decorated her house so pretty with all sorts of Christmas decorations and even made each of the babies an ornament with their name on it!  All the babies wore their Christmas dresses/outfits and we moms had a lot of fun taking pictures!!  The babies had a lot of fun playing with Addison's toys and eating yummy snacks.  We missed Faith, Noelle, and Lily, but all of the other babies were able to make it, which made for a grand total of 7 babies between 12 and 18 months----soooo cute to see them all together!  I am sooo thankful to have met each one of these moms!!!  Here are a few pictures. :)

Kait, Adelyn, and Luc

Kristine and Sydney

Rachael and Adry

Summer and Mommy

Leyla and Bridget

Jade and Brandon

LaDonna and Addison

From left to right, Summer, Leyla, Adry, Adelyn, Addison, Sydney, and Brandon.

 Here are a few epic couch shots!

 A few close-ups from left-to-right....

Saturday, December 17, 2011


Tonight we went to the Holidazzle Parade
Mommy and Summer in front of the large Christmas tree.

Summer on Daddy's shoulders to watch the parade.

Enjoying a hotdog from a street vendor for dinner.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Our little Sponge

Bundling up to take Tucker for a December jog!

 At 16.5 months, Summer is like a little sponge, picking up words, facial expressions, actions, and so much more!  Here are a few things she has been learning lately:

Summer has been learning to say please, thank you, and excuse me (when she burps or needs someone to move).  She will say excuse me on her own for the most part, but often (but not always!) needs reminders on her please's and thank you's.

**Helping around the House**
-Summer helps me fold laundry--she knows where the wash cloths and her socks go, so while I am folding laundry, she will dig in the basket and find them and go and put them away without me saying anything!
-Summer this week learned how to match socks.  I will hold one sock and ask her "Where is the other one?" and she will find the matching sock out of the pile of all the socks.
-Summer will take the dryer sheet out of the laundry basket and say "garbage" and go put it in the garbage all by herself without me saying anything.  She will also pick up scraps of paper (all be it that she ripped the paper herself!!!) and say "garbage" and go put it in the garbage.
-Summer knows where her toys go and will help me pick up her toys and put them away.  Today she put away a pile of about 10-12 toys that had "homes" in three rooms different from where we were playing,  and she put them all in the correct place while I sat and watched and asked her to "put this one away".

**Taking care of Tucker**
-Today Summer said "more" and pointed at Tucker's water bowl when it was empty.
-Summer will walk to Tucker's treat cabinet and will ask for a bone for Tucker.
-Summer will say "Good Boy" when Tucker "stays".

-We are still working on our colors, but in this video you can see a clip of us practicing!

-While this particular video does not showcase her best puzzle skills ;), it does show you a few of the shapes she knows.

While the length of Summer's tantrums has dramatically decreased over the past month, she has found other ways to test :).  Today she started hiding food in her bib that she didn't want to eat so that she could get more of what she wanted.  (Where does she learn this?!?!)  Lately, we have been working on patience, and we sing "the patience" song while we wait for things (like food to be heated in the microwave) and, because she enjoys the song, is a lot more patient in waiting for her food.  We have also recently been working on how she should correctly deal with frustration.  She is very easily frustrated.  For example, when she tries to, say, carry play food on a pretend plate, and the food falls off the plate, she gets very frustrated and throws it all down and cries.  Frustration also can come out in a form of hitting when she is frustrated with Mommy.  In the last day or two we have started to see a bit of success in this area, but we are still working on it!  The newest form of obedience we just started working on is "coming when called".  Now that Summer understands what mommy wants, she will sometimes choose to walk the other way and ignore Mommy, so we are working on that right now too!

Summer and I pray every morning after we read our Bible story, before breakfast, before lunch, before dinner (with daddy), and before bed (with daddy).  Summer will fold her hands and wait patiently for us to finish praying.  Today her friend Addison was having surgery so we were going to pray for her before breakfast.  She is always quiet while we pray, but today, in the middle of the prayer, before I had mentioned Addison's name, she shouted out ADDISON (because she saw her picture on the fridge).  It was pretty cute, because it was almost like she was praying for Addison too :).

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Toddler Tuesday at Mall of America

Six of us moms and babies had a fun morning at Mall of America today for Toddler Tuesday!  Here are a few pictures.

At Lego Land!  From left to right, Adry, Addison, Summer
Lunch in the food court!  From the left: Adry & Rachael, Summer, Leyla & Bridget, Addison and Ladonna, Jade and Brandon (Kristine and Sydney went home to take a nap :) )
Mommy, Summer, and Summer's kiddie fries!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Our Goofball

Today we made a run to the fabric store to pick up some fabric for Summer's big girl room....not a good idea around Christmas time!  It took us about a half hour waiting in line to cut fabric!!!  My little goofball kept the line of people laughing as she was the star of her own show.  She got the biggest kick out of sitting down on the shelves where fabric was stored (it was like her own size chair) and "peeking" out at people in line.  She twirled to the music in the store and she made lots of funny faces.  What a ham ;).  She definitely didn't get that from me!!!!  I think she gets it from her daddy ;)! 

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Little Bits from our day

Trying on a snowman hat while Christmas shopping for Grandma and Grandpa

Today we had a low key morning, which was fun!  Summer loves to dance, and so will now ask for "Kusic" (Music) and then dance to it, everything from swaying her body, to moving her head, to clapping her hands, to drumming the floor, to tapping her knees!  It is hilarious (especially in a store when music is playing!).  Anyway, today she added a new dance move....spinning.  She spun and spun and spun in circles to the music and got herself so dizzy!  I almost laughed out loud.  Anyway, of course when I went to get the video camera she stopped, but here is the tail end of her last spin.

I kept video-ing hoping to catch more spinning, but what I caught instead was just a bit of "normal" Summer, which I figured would be fun to share as well so that I remember some of mannerisms and things she does!  She loves to name EVERYTHING, and many times I really have no idea what her jabber is all about--you will see an example here, where she is naming everything, and then says a word I can't recognize, so I ask her to point to it.  I then realize she is trying to say "snowman".  At the end we play a bit of "Kaboo" (Peek-A-Boo), one of her favorite games.

Sunday, December 4, 2011


We have quite a bit of snow here now, so after church today, Summer, Daddy, Tucker, and I went out to play in it for the first time this year.  Summer loved it!  At first, she just watched Daddy play, but by the end she was giggling, walking through the snow, helping Daddy throw snow at Mommy ;),  and enjoying how soft it was when she fell down!  She only face-planted once---she was a little surprised---but wanted to keep playing anyway!  The only time she cried was when we told her it was time to go was only 23 degrees out and we didn't want her to get too cold!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

A few "firsts"

Summer wearing mommy's shades (photo courtesy of Uncle Jordan)
Today was a day of 3 "firsts" for Summer"

1) She completed her first puzzle ALL by herself
***We have a puzzle that Great Grandma Obermayer gave Summer for her birthday this year that has 8 large colored wooden shapes.  Over the past months, Summer has been able to sometimes get the right shape in the right spot, sometimes not....and even when she does match the shapes, she often can't get the shape turned right to fit in the puzzle slot.  However, today she did the whole puzzle all by herself!  I dumped the pieces on the floor and she put all of the shapes in the right spot and turned them the right way all by herself.  She even said "oval" and "star" for those two shapes as she put them in the puzzle.

2) She said the word "milk" for "milk"!
***Summer has been using the word "ba-ba" for both water and milk, no matter what type of cup it is in, ever since she was 10 or 11 months, despite the fact that mommy and daddy continually call it "milk" or "water".  Today, for the first time, she said "milk"!

3) She went up and down the stairs all by herself.
***Summer has been crawling up the stairs by herself for about 5 months.  She has also been able to "slide" down the stairs on her belly for about 4 months.  However, she has not been able to start at the top and turn herself around without any help, and come downstairs.  Usually what happens is that she will climb upstairs, play for a while, and then call to me to come help her turn around in order for her to come back down the stairs.  Today she went up by herself, got a toy, came to the top of the stairs, turned herself around, and slid down on her belly all by herself! 

In other news, she is getting a lot better at her pronunciation of words.  For example "Tucker" went from Ca-Ca, to Tuck-ee, to now almost exactly Tucker.  She is starting to better pronounce the "end syllable" of her words.

She repeats almost everything we say and is constantly learning.  We are working on our colors now.  She calls almost everything "red" but in the last few days is pretty consistently identifying "green" and "pink" in some of her color books, along with red.

She also mimics our body language.  Most recently she has picked up "shrugging" her shoulders, and will repeatedly shrug first one shoulder, then the other, then both!  I cannot help but laugh out loud!

Her tantrums are getting MUCH shorter and this past week she has been much more obedient.  She is getting really good at obeying "stay here" when we are in a store she will stand next to me vs going exploring.

She loves to help me put away laundry, and will continually come back to me asking for something else to put away!  She closes open drawers and cabinet doors.  She loves to sort and put things into things and take things out of things.  Does this mean she will be neat and organized?!?!?  I hope!  ;)

This morning we were at a friend's house and Summer found a baby doll and a little bottle and started feeding the bottle to the baby!  I'm not sure where she learned it but it was pretty cute to watch!  I am so excited for her to be a big sister!


We celebrated Thanksgiving in two parts!  For the first part, we met in Apple Valley the weekend before Thanksgiving.  Here are a few pictures.
Lovin' the purse

Silly smile

Pushing Baby
With Uncle Ty and Aunt Sarah and Roco

Kisses from Mommy

Reading with Grandma and Great-Grandma Sandy
Grandma is good at reading stories!

The fam
 For Thanksgiving Part II, we drove to Fergus Falls.

Summer and Grandma
High five for "Dor-din" (Uncle Jordan)

Model coming down the runway....Summer LOVED wearing these necklaces and had them on ALL weekend!

Model going back down the runway!
Bathtime at Grandma's was so much fun.  Grandma got out all sorts of mixing bowls and spoons and Summer played for almost 45 minutes "cooking and mixing" the bathwater!

Cuddling with Daddy after bathtime

Summer LOVED playing with "Bante" (Uncle Javonte's) track and matchbox cars.  "A-Den" (Again) and again we would race them down the track and she loved it!
With Second Cousin Kopel (9 months)

Summer LOVED the pumpkin pie!!!

Dancing with Kopel
Summer also enjoyed pulling around a little train that Paul played with when he was little.  Another favorite toy at "Gum-ma and Gum-pa" (Grandma and Grandpa's) house was a little push popper that Summer pushed all over the house!

 Finally, here's a video of Summer putting on her necklaces that were referenced in one of the earlier pictures.  As you can see, she has fun wearing them! :)

We had a great time seeing family and Paul and his brother and dad even got to get some hunting in a few times!

Monday, November 21, 2011

15 month appointment

I am 15 months!
I weigh 23 lbs (50th percentile)
(I was weighed on the standup scale this time, just like mommy!)
I am 31 inches tall (60th percentile)
My head is still quite large! (95th percentile!)
Here I am waiting for my 4 shots :(.  Mommy says I did very well.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Putting Up the Christmas Tree!

This year was fun because Summer was old enough to participate (a little!) in decorating for Christmas this year!  We made homemade pizza for dinner and then dug out the Christmas stuff from the basement.  While Mommy and Daddy were putting up the tree, lights, and decorations, Summer had fun looking through last years Christmas kept her entertained for quite some time!  When it came time to hang the ornaments, Summer did a great job!  We had a bunch of plastic (non-breakable) ornaments we bought the year we got married and these worked perfectly for her to hang on the low branches, because if/when  she dropped them, they bounced rather than breaking!  Here are a few pictures and videos.

Watching Daddy put up the lights


Helping mommy hang ornaments



Tucker got a special bone....serving as the perfect distraction from getting into the ornaments!

Paul hung up lights outside this year--our first time doing so!  You can also see our first snow of the year that came today.

Our finished tree!

The stockings :-)