Erin Virginia

Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Fiona's Birthday Interview (and Video) - Age 3

1. Who is your favorite person? Maddie (friend from school)
2. What is your favorite color? Green
3. What's your favorite television show? Little Einsteins
4. What is your favorite outfit? Dora shirt
5. What sport do you like best? Play with the cars on the playground
6. What song do you like best? Twinkle, twinkle, little star
7. What is your favorite cereal? Mini-wheats
8. Who is your best friend? Maddie
9. What do you want to be when you grow up? Make big towers
10. What is your favorite book? Jonah and the Whale
11. What are you really good at? Playing with Eloise
12. Where do you wish you could go on vacation? To the ocean
13. What is your best memory? Playing with Maddie yesterday at school
14. What would you buy if you had $10,000? Teddy grahams
15. What food do you hate the most? Chicken
16. If you could have a wish, what would it be? Ice cream cones
17. What is your favorite ice cream flavor? Vanilla
18. What are you thankful for in your life? My family
19. What do you like to do with your friends? Play with them
20. What do you hope you will get to do before your next birthday? Get presents

Fiona - 3 Years

Our Fiona has been with us for three years. She is still an affectionate, sweet girl with a lot of spunk. She loves to eat cheese and crackers, but her favorite snack in the whole word is graham crackers and peanut butter. She says, "This snack makes me happy." She loves being thrown up in the air or twirled. Fiona loves to help around the house and will water plans, unload the dishwasher or sweep and dust as much as I will let her. She is starting to skip her naps on the weekends and will just roll around in her bed during quiet time instead. She generally sleeps through the night in her own bed without any problems.

Here are a few anecdotes: 
  • Fiona thinks any delivered items are "emails." For example, she picked up the local newspaper from our front steps the other day and said, "Here you go, Mama. Here are your emails." 
  • She considers anything in the past to be "yesterday." As in "Mom, you remember yesterday when I went to Lilly's house and..."
  • She likes to eat both salmon and ham. When she wants either, she asks for "halmon."
  • She calls the lawn-mower, "mower-lawn." 
  • She loves to be read stories and to hear stories. Chris and I often tell her stories about places we've traveled, and sometimes we ask her to tell us a story. She generally replies, "I don't under-know any stories" (combining "understand" and "know"). Her favorite stories are the following (these are Fiona's titles): "Women is sick," which is about how she and Chris and Eloise saw an ambulance help a woman at a tie shop in Rome, and "Kids Steal Mama's Wallet," which is about how I had my wallet stolen in Paris but then recovered it. 
  • When we were staying in a hotel room in the spring, Fiona randomly picked up the telephone, and we heard her say, "Mr. Chocolate Man? You bring me some chocolate. You bring chocolate for me, my mama and daddy. Eloise is too little." Chris and I laughed really hard. Now she'll call Mr. Chocolate Man from my cell phone sometimes. 
  • Sometimes we split her bedtime routine. I might help her brush teeth and then read her a story. Then Chris will read her a couple more stories and put her to bed. After I finish reading a story, she will run to Chris and say, "Time to read to your honey girl.
We celebrated Fiona's birthday with a fiesta on the 18th. I picked up a few clearance Cince de Mayo decorating items, and we had tri-tip burrito bowls for a meal. The party was busy with food, piñata, presents and cake, but Fiona had a blast.

Getting her nails done for her party

Dressed up

Pictures with these two are hard

Eloise wanted a turn at the piñata

Princess dress from my parents

Our big present to her was her first bicycle.

On Fiona's actual birthday, the 21st, I took the day off work, and Chris and I took her to the Mall of America for her first amusement park rides. Her first ride was the log chute, which she LOVED. I thought she would be scared going down the chutes, but she laughed. I took her on the Ferris Wheel afterwards, but I think it was a little anticlimactic.

Ferris Wheel

After Chris went back to work, I took Fiona to a local rock/crystal shop because she loves to collect rocks and also look at my childhood collection of polished stones. We picked out a few new ones together, and she enjoyed lining them up to look at them.

July 27 edit: At her doctor's visit today, Fiona was 37 inches (50th percentile) and 31 lbs (55th percentile). Her doctor told her that she didn't know what she would ask Fiona at her 4 year check-up because Fiona can answer all of the 4 year questions already. :)

Monday, July 20, 2015

Living Room Update

The walls seem to be closing in on us at our house as the girls grow and the toys multiply. Chris and I made the decision to update the furniture in our living room to create a more open, functional space. Our much-loved leather couch that we bought before we got married created a barrier between the dining room and living room, blocking our view of the kids while they played. And I just haven't been playing my beautiful piano that Chris bought for me our first Christmas together as a married couple. In the end, we made the tough decision to sell both pieces.

We ordered our new sofas/loveseats through Joybird, a furniture retailer with a physical presence in California. The company offers custom furniture builds (which we needed for our smaller-than-standard sized space) and guarantees free returns (including return shipping) for any reason. I couldn't find a single poor review of Joybird, so we moved forward with the order. The rest of pieces we ordered online after the sofas arrived. Chris and I compromised on the coffee table: I wanted one or two small ottomans or a small table, and Chris didn't want anything. So we ended up finding an acrylic table that we both like (with no sharp edges!). Win, win, except for all the oily smudge marks the girls leave on the table.

Before & After

Before & After

Before & After

Rug & Table

Greta's side of the room

The girls' play area (more toys in the trunk)

Monday, July 06, 2015

June/July with Family

June and July (so far) have been busy with family. Sean and Bonny and kids spent their last couple days in Minnesota with us after the moving company emptied out their house. Fiona and Cora had a "sleepover" on an air mattress in Fiona's room after watching a show and eating popcorn each night. Fiona chatted Cora's ear off long past bedtime. We had a hard time keeping the kids from jumping on the air mattress, especially Eloise. We were sad to say goodbye but were happy to have a couple final days of concentrated time together.

Playing doctor was a popular game

Over the 4th of July weekend, Matt and Katie flew in from Chicago. Friday, we drove to Lake Minnetonka and hopped on Rob and Allison's boat for a couple hours. Afterwards, we met at Tilia for dinner without the kids.

We pulled up to shore for a bit so the kids could play in the sand. 

The siblings

The girls passed out, no joke, 30 seconds after buckling into their carseats.

Saturday, we spend the evening at Rob and Allison's for dinner. I put Eloise to bed in a pack 'n play so we could stay late enough to watch fireworks at a neighbor's house.

First s'more