Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Florida bliss, Florida love

Marianne here. What a fantastic few days we've had. And as I sit here tonight watching NCIS with my Dad, a patriotic support the troops commercial comes on, and I realize just how good I've got it. I am so blessed to have such wonderful support as I've gone through some of the toughest challenges I've faced. It's been hard, really hard some days, and others have been the best of my life. Not having Clint around has been so random, and reflective, and emotional, and strengthening at the same time. Cue baby cries. I'll be back...

K. I've been wanting to write it, get it out, for a while. Finally feeling like I'm getting a bit more perspective on this whole deployment thing. I've been mad, really mad. No, not at the birth, or right after. But when Y and I had to leave the hospital. For some reason that moment pissed me off more than any. Who knows why? Maybe prior I was distracted by my hopes of birth and what was happening, maybe it was like after an injury and the adrenaline stops, shock starts. But, yeah, that point I was mad as hell. Sorry, Mom. And then I was sad, depressingly sad. Throughout the holidays, our anniversary, getting over the hump of six weeks of postpartum. But, I faced that, went and saw a professional, and now I'm good. And there was the physical breakdown. When my body just said enough already, you have to much on your plate, and took a break. Literally. I lost conciousness for a bit, maybe two minutes, but it was my body saying that it had enough. And then the parenting let downs. When I've screamed a bit too loud, a bit too long, and then I feel like the worst Mom in the world. And I apologize. After it all, I can then have a day like today. A perfect day. A day where Y sleeps on me for nap, smiling every few minutes when I just know he is having a wonderful dream. And play with Reed and Hayes in the pool as I havent in too long. Being silly, having the best of times, without a care in the world. And walking home on the beach with them. Knowing Y is cuddled up with Dad, in possibly his favorite spot-my Dad's calm arms, while I can explore a sea jelly through the eyes of a five year old, or dig shells like a two year old (but so close to three). So, yeah, I know we'll be alright, the five of us, when we're reunited. And when I look out across the ocean and am deep in my thoughts I realize that I'm not the one missing a thing.

With that, enjoy our incredible family, that's enough typing and opening of my heart for one night:).

More Cincy, folks

Reeder at your service. Thought I'd take you on a trip to our normal routine. Findlay Market. We love it. We even get our own money, pay the vendors. Even order m&m (my bro pronounces it eminema) cookies from the deaf bakery. We're that good. So, thought you'd like to see us there.

And as opposed to 29, Mom leaves us regularly. We even have a "babysitter". Not just random friends that Mom swaps favors for like the rest of our lives. Paige. She rocks. I guess if you're going to have a babysitter, it's good to have a good one, one that Hayes and I both like. You see, Y has never been left with her, just us big kids. Anyway, last week Mom had to leave us and Paige was a bit busy, soooo, Paige's parents watched us, too. Who do you think would step up? Grama Max and Grampa Don were in Chicago, Big Mama was at a party, and Papa, well, we thought we'd give him a break. So, we went to Paige's field hockey game with her rents.

Ms. Renee....

Mr. John... (who I don't think really volunteered to spend his Sunday this way...)

Oh, I forgot to mention. This post is also photographed by yours truly. So, it may seem a bit random. But that's how my 5 year old brain works, a little here and there. Just stick with me.

Hayes has a slight obsession with monster trucks. So, I thought you'd like to see one of his favs, Madusa. Get it? Mad USA. And it's driven by a Gail (that's how Hayes says girl).

Maybe this is what Hayes will do for his parent mandated college scholarship.

Oooh, the mysterious Paige. You can tell that she's a great babysitter, no?

And folks, it is starting to warm up around here. You know what that means? Zoo! Let's rock and roll to our first visit to the zoo this year!
And, of course, we ran into Fouad.

Wondering why we have the huge smiles? Just wait...

March of the penguins!

How cute are these king penguins? We loved it! But then had some behavior problems so we had to leave the zoo a bit early and with haste.

Well, let's leave this cold, pass the computer over to our Mom for a sec, and head to Florida!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Chicago is...

MY KIND OF TOWN! I loved it! Every SINGLE minute of it. I think I'm a big city girl at heart. So wonderful. The trains. The buses. The museums. The taxis. The lights. The snow. The AMERICAN GIRL STORE! I love Chicago.

But let's back up. Remember, my birthday wasn't finished last time I blogged about it. Well, I was waiting for the closing ceremonies. Girls' weekend to Chicago. We planned this a long time ago, way before we knew Weiler was Weiler. Back then I said that if the baby was a girl, she could come, boy baby, we'll see. I changed my mind the day Weiler was born. No lie. I told my Mom as soon as I met this incredible bundle of joy that a boy baby was more than welcome on our girls' weekend. So, we left Hayes in the care of Big Mama (and Papa, too). They had a blast, but that is NOT what this blog is about tonight. Nope, we're heading to Chicago. Hop on the Megabus with us and let's roll!

There was so much snow! I've never seen so much. Couldn't even open the gate to get to the park to play. But that was A-OK, we had plenty else to do in this windy and snowy city. My dad calls my mom cityAnnie when they travel. Well, Dad, I introduce you to cityReeder. Or cityMeatball. Or cityDesertRat. Or cityPoose. Whatever you want to call me is fine.

Waiting for the train. I loved all the public transportation. I definitely got more comfortable as the weekend continued. At first, I was a little unsettled by the space between the platform and the train. Can you imagine? Rookie move.

Oh, the money spot. American Girl store was even BETTER than expected. I ended up going with Molly, she won my heart with the red white and blue tap outfit. I just KNOW my Dad is going to love it. That's why I picked it, truly. But first Molly and I got dressed up in our flower girl dresses. You know, I'm going to be the flower girl for Aunt Boo's wedding. Never to early too start practicing.

There's Molly in her rockin' outfit. Don't you think it's grand? She even got her own little teacup. This tea was fantastic. They even sang happy birthday to me. Girls' only-Mom, Aunt Boo and me. Oh, yeah, Weiler, but he was not the center of attention, don't worry. Do you think my mom should nurse Weiler at the tea while drinking champagne? Aunt Boo and Mom laughed about it later-they didn't even realize it at first! Molly was fantastic-it took me a little while to get her all set for lunch, everything had to be just right!

Ooooh, city lights. Glorious, beautiful Chicago. On our way home to meet up with Prince Evan at 1 of 3 pizzerias for the weekend.

Aunt Boo was so wonderful. She colored with me and colored with me and colored some more. She and Prince Evan gave me new markers, crayons and coloring books for my big day (not to mention American Girl palooza) so we went to town!

And there was some male bonding time squeezed in there, too.

And more snow came! Can you believe it? We made it out before most shoveling happened so we took to the roads. It was fantastic, and so beautiful, and SO much fun!

And then we went to the childrens museum. That's where Prince Evan and I built a small house for almost two hours. He was my apprentice! And Weiler looked on...

And hung with Aunt Boo during building time.

And we kept on building. This was the lanai.

And then we went to chase butterflies once the adults convinced me that there might be other wonderful things to do in the museum.

My mom liked this sign. Enough said. And I agree. I wish she'd put her phone a little more often, too.

And then we got ready for the super bowl. Amber had some work to do, on facebook, I'm sure, so Prince Evan got to hold Y.

No, we're not finished with Chicago! Museum of Science and Industry. 2 problems with this museum.
1. There was some loud thunder in one part, which freaked me out terribly.
2. We didn't allot enough time. So that means we're gonna HAVE to go back to Chicago. I'm serious.
For those of you who know us well, you know the Kappel humor to be found here...

I had Mom take this pic for my brother left at home. I even picked out a tractor in the gift shop to bring home to him. I did miss him, even said so, maybe once. So I wanted him to know what we did and that we love him! Maybe next time, hayesyboy.

Ooooh, this is for my rents. They have a mean competitive streak with air hockey. Mom always wins, by a lot, but Dad keeps trying. Kind of like soccer tennis. Anyway, I really like mazes. So this is the perfect combo of their craziness and my calmness.

Oh, did you see my hair tie in the above pic? We got that at American Girl-it was our napkin ring, pretty cool!

And this one is for Aunt Kari. She has a thing for clowns.

This is my comfort zone. Ask me anything. Teach me anything. I even told my Mom that one of my favorite things about Chicago was when that lady was teaching me at the museum. Genes. What 5 year old isn't interested?

This cool museum has baby chicks that hatch EVERY day! Super cool! We didn't see one come out but they sure were pecking those shells! And I was a little annoyed with the camera.

Last day in Chicago, third pizza place evaluated. Let's get a taxi and get outta here!

See ya next time! A huge thanks to Aunt Boo and Prince Evan. Without you two this blog wouldn't have been possible! You all ROCK!

Life as we pose it

Reeder here, ya'll. First off, where are the comments? You people claim to be following our blog, but, well, I can't hear you! So, come on, leave us some love!

Alright, enough berating. We went to the museum center the other day. You might see it as an awesome cave and such, but, well, Julia and I saw it as the perfect setting for a modeling shoot.

And Hayes will climb anything. Stalagmite is no exception.

Watch out America-your next top models are in Cincinnati!

NikNik is pretty good at posing too. She loves getting her hands on Y.

This is my serious pose.

Peace out!

Enough of that. So, we go to the grocery store about once a month. And for some crazy reason mom took all three of us with her. You can't see Hayes, but he's in the car under his boots. I have no idea where I am, and you can clearly see Y. Just look north of the apples, west of the chex.

Y was sooooo cold. Aunt NikNik is on this extreme cost cutting deal where she basically is using no heat. Some could say she's green. We say she's crazy. It was freeeeeeeezing. We convinced her to crank it up, but in the meantime we had to bundle the cutest baby ever.

Ooooh, this was fun. I love school. I love tests. I love showing off my big brain. Hearing test at 5 year check up? Right up my alley!

And Y was with me for his 2 month. 14 14, cool weight for Y, if you ask me!

This is Hayes talking on his ZhuZhu pet phone. He's so weird...

Hey, I'm off to Chicago-see ya in the Windy City!