Counters

                                                           Lilypie Third Birthday tickers Lilypie Kids Birthday tickers Lilypie Kids Birthday tickers
Nearly half a million babies (1 in 10) are born premature in the US each year which is higher than that of most other developed nations. This is the journeys of our first born son, Finnegan, who was born 14 weeks early and weighed only 1 pound 15 ounces at birth. Of our daugher, Korrigan, who was born a healthy 7 pounds, 7 ounces at 37 weeks. And of our second son, MacKeegan, who was also born at 37 weeks at a whopping 8 pounds, 13 ounces. Our continued adventures reminds us daily how good God is.

Tuesday, January 31

What can Korri do?

The developmental milestones listed below will give you a general idea of what you can expect from a "typical" 12 month old, but every baby’s development varies in different areas.

Social and Emotional
  • Shy or anxious with strangers Yes and no, really depends on the situation
  • Cries when mother or father leaves Mom, yes, but is getting better
  • Enjoys imitating people in her play ALL the time and thinks it is so funny when she does
  • Shows specific preferences for certain people and toys Yes, Finn and anything he is playing with
  • Tests parental responses to her actions during feedings Not really, she eats very well and if she does "test" us it is usually because she is full
  • Tests parental responses to her behavior Who, Korri? Yes, constantly
  • May be fearful in some situations It takes her a long time to warm up to new situations
  • Prefers mother and/or regular caregiver over all others Yup, again, getting better
  • Repeats sounds or gestures for attention Yes, she loves to make people laugh
  • Finger-feeds herself Yes
  • Extends arm or leg to help when being dressed Yes, but is usually too busy to actually help
Cognitive
  • Explores objects in many different ways (shaking, banging, throwing, dropping) Yes, all of the above
  • Finds hidden objects easily I think so, haven't tested much
  • Looks at correct picture when the image is named Haven't tried
  • Imitates gestures Yes
  • Begins to use objects correctly (drinking from cup, brushing hair, dialing phone, listening to receiver) Yes, drinks water from a sippy cup and tries to brush her own hair
Language
  • Pays increasing attention to speech Yes and is an amazingly good mimicker
  • Responds to simple verbal requests Yes
  • Responds to “no” Responds, yes, but not always as we'd like her to!
  • Uses simple gestures, such as shaking head for “no” I haven't seen her shake her head, but waves and claps
  • Babbles with inflection (changes in tone) I think so, but haven't paid attention specifically to it
  • Says “dada” and “mama” Yes, in addition to "hi" "byebye" and "yay"
  • Uses exclamations, such as “Oh-oh!” She JUST started doing that and it's so cute
  • Tries to imitate words Constantly
Movement
  • Reaches sitting position without assistance Yes
  • Gets from sitting to crawling or prone (lying on stomach) position Yes
  • Pulls self up to stand Yes
  • Walks holding on to furniture Yes
  • Stands momentarily without support She just started, but is VERY unstable
  • Walks with adult help Yes
  • "Dances" to music All the time!
  • May walk two or three steps without support No
  • Crawls well Yes
  • Climbs stairs with adult supervision YES, and sometimes without adult supervision because she is so quick!
Hand and Finger Skills
  • Uses pincer grasp Yes
  • Bangs two objects together Yes
  • Puts objects into container Yes
  • Takes objects out of container Yes
  • Lets objects go voluntarily Yes
  • Pokes with index finger I haven't noticed her doing this yet
  • Tries to imitate scribbling Haven't tried but I don't know if she could hold a writing utensil
Physical
  • Triples birth weight and is 29 to 32 inches long Not sure since we haven't had her well-child appt yet, but she should be close
  • May take one to two naps daily At least two short ones a day, sometimes an additional cat nap
  • Teething continues She has 7 teeth with two more coming in
  • She usually sleeps from 8pm to 8am but some times gets up between 10 and 11pm. Far better than it was!

Monday, January 30

One year ago

One year ago today, our lives changed forever with the additional of our sweet, spunky, adorable new baby girl. This last year has had its challenges for sure, but the joys far out weight everything else. In the last couple of weeks, Korri has developed into a little "person" and has grown up so much. We no longer have an infant in our house (sad for mommy!), but rather a very opinionated little toddler...and we wouldn't change a thing. Korri, thank you for teaching me that there isn't such a thing as perfect parenting, but that I just need to try to be the best parent FOR YOU that I can be! I never knew that two children with the same parents, raised in the same house could be so different. There is never a dull moment around here and I love it!!  Happy birthday, Pretty Grill. We love you so much!
Above is the beautiful sight that greeted me this morning...smile and a wave from the birthday girl. (sorry it is a little out of focus). And below is the moment she turned one at 10:39am. This was much easier than 5:24am for Finn...although remembering was the tricky part. Thank goodness for cell phone alarms!
Thankfully, I'm in far less pain than I was last year at this time...although, to be honest, the epidural was still working, so it wasn't that bad! More to come later of her party yesterday.

Wednesday, January 25

Finn is done

For all the waiting masses (?!?!), Finn's 3 year pictures are finished and ready for you to view! Just click on the link below:

Finn's 3 year pics
password:  govikings (if you need it)

Jess did a great job, yet again. I LOVE the one with Finn wearing Korri's hat. It literally makes me laugh out loud. Hope you like them, too!

Monday, January 23

Twenty Questions - Finn 3

Starting at age 3, I will be asking Finn and Korri these 20 questions every year around their birthday. I am hoping to assemble a small album for each of them with their yearly answers. It should be fun to see how their answers change. I chose NOT to direct or influence Finn's answers in anyway.

20 questions: answered by Finnegan

1. What is your favorite color? Yellow
2. What is your favorite toy? Thomas
3. What is your favorite fruit? Orange
4. What is your favorite tv show? Meet the Letters
5. What is your favorite thing to eat for lunch? Cottage Cheese
6. What is your favorite outfit? Jammies
7. What is your favorite game? Marbulous
8. What is your favorite snack? Cheese Its (NeNe’s)
9. What is your favorite animal? Tigger and Goldy
10. What is your favorite song? ABC’s
11. What is your favorite book? Chicka Chicka Boom Boom
12. Who is your best friend? NeNe
13. What is your favorite cereal? Daddy’s blue cereal (Boo Berry)
14. What is your favorite thing to do outside? First Nothing; Second: Shovel
15. What is your favorite drink? Milk
16. What is your favorite holiday? Fruit
17. What do you like to take to bed with you at night? Goldy pillow
18. What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast?  Fruit
19. What do you want for dinner on your birthday? Cottage Cheese
20. What do you want to be when you grow up? Kangaroo and a boat

I have to say, I was surprised that he understood and answered them appropriately (although toward the end, he needed some prodding to finish!). Some of his answers were exactly what I thought he was going to say and some surprised me. 

Sunday, January 22

Daddy Day/Mommy Getaway

Yesterday, the kids got to have a "Daddy Day" while I got to have lunch with friends from high school. Jim took the kids to the Mall of America and Underwater World (or whatever it is called now)!
I think he thought it would be a good way to spend the time, but I thought it sounded like a lot of work. I guess all went well, other than that mall being a complete zoo.

I met Holly and Heidi in St. Cloud at Olive Garden. It was so nice to catch up...not so nice to realize how old we've somehow become. Hmmm... It is amazing that it's been...ummm...TWELVE years since high school, yet the minute we got together, it was like old time. Love that. We got there at 1 and I didn't leave until almost 5:30! What could we possibly have talked about for that long? Who knows but trust me, there was never a lull in conversation. We're hoping to get together twice a year but bring all the kiddos in the summer for a play date. Can't wait!

Then last night was Grace's birthday party, which Jim brought the kids to and I was able to meet them there later. It worked out great and the kids had a blast. We didn't get home until TEN (yikes!), but the kids really did well and bedtime was a snap. I think they were both sleeping within two minutes of being put in bed. No, we are not moving regular bedtime to 10, regardless of how easy it was!!

This morning, I gave Finn my old point-and-shoot camera and let him loose to take pictures. Here are a few!


He actually took a few good ones and LOTS of his fingers, the floor and the couch. This last one is very "Blair Witch."

Wednesday, January 18

Ch-ch-ch-ch-changes

We've had a few changes here over the last couple weeks. Korri started pulling up to things...well, everything, she started crawling up and down the stairs, she is quickly outgrowing size 9 month clothes and her ability to express herself is maturing like crazy.

Finn turned 3 (duh!) and had a blast at his party. On his birthday, we decided it was time to turn his car seat around.
Part of me wishes we could have waited until his adjusted third birthday, but I also think it is good we were able to wait as long as we did. He loves being able to see more and now he never stops talking or asking questions while in the car! He has a strange obsession with wanting to know what road we are driving on all the time.

After consulting with a friend of a friend who happens to be a car seat expert, I decided on Finn's next stage car seat, found a great price online and ordered it!
We decided on a Graco Nautilus. Can't wait for it to arrive. Finn could stay in his current seat for a long time, but Korri will be transitioning from the infant seat soon and we want her to be in the Britax because it has the highest safety ratings (not that we aren't concerned about Finn's, but he is bigger and stronger than she is!).

Tonight, we finally put away Finn's crib and set up his toddler bed! He was giddy when Jim was taking apart the crib and kept jumping around.
When Finn saw the bed in his room, he said, "Can I go to sleep now?" Ha! When it was really bedtime, he didn't want to go to sleep, but lately, that has been a common occurrence anyway.
As you can see, we put the head of the bed against the wall. Well, in his crib, he always slept with his head near the door (why? I have no idea but Korri does the same thing!) and he promptly laid with his head at the foot. So, Jim went in and switched the bed, so at least, the rails might keep him from falling out. So far, so good!

Now looking at the pictures, I'm thinking we need to change the decor in his room to reflect his new "big boy" status. That makes me sad because I LOVE his Noah's Ark themed room. I think we will redecorate for his next birthday. He can deal until then! I need to get the curtains up in Korri's room first...it has only been almost a year! Sheesh.

And tonight, Jess posted a preview of Korri's one year pictures on Facebook.
I don't know how Jess did it, but she managed to capture a smile. Can't wait to see the rest!

Tuesday, January 17

Sneak peek

Pictures went really well on Saturday. Finn was his normal, happy-go-lucky selfish and would have kept "performing" all day, I think! Here is a sneak peek...(amazing!)
Korri was another story. She honestly smiles and laughs so easily at home and she would NOT crack a smile almost all day. Jess said she got a couple smiles toward the end. Sheesh...Korri was making me work for my money! Sneak peek to come. (Courtesy of Jessica Hislop Photography)

Since Korri is almost one and will most likely be starting milk soon, I started offering her a sippy cup with water. For a while, she really didn't get it, but this last week, she definitely is getting a significant amount from cups.
The thing is...usually she finds Finn's water cups and drink those! Oh, and she usually drinks it upside down (like in this picture). Hmmm...

NeNe so graciously watched the kids last night (Jim was traveling) so I could take a sewing class. I got an amazing sewing machine from Jim's mom for Christmas and while I kind of know how to sew, I wanted a refresher course. It was VERY basic, but I learned a few things about fabric and patterns. Now I can't wait to make something! My goal is to eventually make a cute sundress for Korri!

Saturday, January 14

Movin and shakin

Remember how I said that Korri has mastered pulling up to stand? Well, the other night, she pulled up to standing against the refrigerator!
What's the big deal you ask? There's nothing to hold onto to leverage herself up! I remember when Finn was in PT and him pulling up to a wall was such a big deal. In Korri's case, she just wanted to reach Finn's magnet letters on the frig!

AND as of yesterday, she has started cruising! It is all about appropriate motivation for her. If she pulls up to the couch and I'm just a little further than she would like, she's started stepping sideways to get to me. She can probably only do one or two steps at this point, but it is a precursor to walking...God help us all!!

It just kills me when she does all these "normal" things at a "normal" time with no effort on my part (or PT) to help her. Every single little baby step was so hard and took so long for Finn to accomplish and with Korri, if I weren't paying attention, I feel like she would be driving a car or something! Hopefully it will be MANY more years before that ;)

I'm excited for Finn's 3 year and Korri's ONE YEAR pictures today with Jess. Kristine and Zander will be there, too, for Zand-man's 6 month pictures. Should be a fun time. Hope the kiddos cooperate (especially Korri's hair!) and take a few good ones!

Friday, January 13

Birthday shenanigans

Finn's big day was wonderful. In the morning, we met some of his ECFE friends at Choo Choo Bob's in St. Paul for some fun train-time. Thank you everybody who came, it meant a lot. I honestly think he could have stayed all day. I don't know if he realized his friends were there for his birthday, but it didn't matter.
After playing, several of us went to lunch at Trotters Cafe around the corner. There were three adults and SIX kids, and while we took over a whole corner of the restaurant, it went well and the kids got to share each other's lunch, which they loved.

In the evening, the four of us met DeAnn, Ann, Grandma (Kathy) and Austin at El Loro for dinner. Finn LOVED it and kept dipping his quesadilla in his spanish rice! Austin couldn't decide if he wanted to sit by Korri or Finn. Grandma and Austin had a sleepover at our house that night, so going to bed was a little difficult (because the boys just wanted to play together!).

Saturday was a crazy day! My cake decorating was interrupted by a bang, crying and my mom saying, "That is really bad!" Finn had hit his head on the corner of the wall and it swelled up immediately...it was disgusting. We put ice on it right away and Austin got Jim up. Jim called the nurse's line and they said we had to bring him in. So mom said with Korri and Austin while Jim and I took Finn to Children's ER. Two hours later, the party was still on! He was fine, but we just had to watch him during the day and through the night. Sheesh!

Finn's 3rd birthday party was wonderful. He had a blast and everybody was so loving and generous to him. Even with two hours ripped away from my decorating time, the caked turned out okay.
We even did the pinata outside...in January! I'm sure that will never happen again, but the kids loved it. And even blindedfolded, after one swing and a miss, she whacked the heck out of it and the candy and toys went flying. Finn still talks about hitting the pinata. I/we could not have pulled it off without my mom's help. Thank you doesn't even come to the gratitude we feel, but nevertheless, THANK YOU SO MUCH!!

I also had a wonderful birthday on Monday. Jim stayed with the kids while I went to Juut Spa and Salon for a 75 minute Replenishing Facial, which includes a neck and shoulder massage! I was in heaven and didn't want to leave. After that, Jim surprised me with a cake (from Target!) and a night out!
Stacey so kindly came over to watch the kids while Jim and I went to dinner (I picked Red Lobster). After dinner, we were supposed to go to a movie, but there wasn't anything out that we really wanted to see. SO...we went shopping instead! That might not sound great to some of you but it was to me for two reasons: 1. no kids to haul in and out of the car. 2. Jim and I used to run errands all the time before kids and we really enjoyed it. It felt good to pretend like it was just us for a while!

Now we are 3 and 33! My how the time flies. Auntie Kristine's birthday was on Tuesday and Grace's birthday is tomorrow. After that: Korri's birthday! Sheesh! Saying this is a busy time of year for us is a major under statement :)

Thursday, January 5

Pull ups

Korri has mastered pulling up to standing! For a while, she could only do it if the object she was pulling up to was close to the ground. But now, she pulls up to the couch...or whatever she wants to get to...all the time. It is so cute to see her little head pop up when you're sitting on the couch (there is also a row of piping on the couch that she loves to chew on...great!). She is still getting into everything, including the Christmas stuff that we NEED to put away!

So, when I'm at my wits end, I put this chair up to at least block her from the tree area. I have to be careful because she figured out how to crawl through it when the legs aren't behind the couch! Sheesh. On the bright side, after some initial frustration, Finn has figured out how to climb OVER the chair (since I don't have to worry about him taking ornaments off the tree, bows off the left-over presents or falling when trying to climb up the stairs!)! It was a big deal to me, since he rarely is able to do climbing things like that.

I need to start getting ready for the big day tomorrow!

Monday, January 2

Welcome 2012

We had a wonderful trip, although, we will NOT be traveling with Ms. Korri until she is older and can sleep better at night. She either kept us up really late or was back in our bed very early every single night. And she didn't nap well there either, so I think she was sleep deprived (as were we!). She is sleeping much better since we got home (Thank you God!!). All things considered, the kids did great on the airplane rides, which we are/were very thankful for. Traveling direct would have been much nicer than stopping, but you do what you can afford!



This Christmas was very special for us. Finn "got" Christmas and all the things that went with it and he enjoyed showing and explaining things to Korri. I've said it before, but Christmas when you have children is so much better! The kids, of course, got way too much stuff as they have very generous people in their lives. I took probably too many pictures, but when you have a new (good!) camera, who can blame me?!?! Sasha kept up with me shot for shot since she got a new camera for Christmas, too! This pic is Christmas Eve morning after Santa came. They are reading the letter Santa and Rudolph left for them. Finn thought that was pretty cool.

Oh and I went to my very first yoga class while we were in Washington. Jim's aunt Debbie goes and on Tuesday night, she asked if anybody wanted to go with her. SO...I said I would go if Sasha went! It turned out to be Power Yoga (of course!) and was a little too much for me since I haven't done yoga in...well, since before Finn was born. It felt so good to do yoga, though, and now I want to take it up again and maybe find a DVD to do with Finn since yoga strengthens your core muscles and that is what he needs help with.

I uploaded all pictures up until 12/31 on our picture website (link to the right), so have at it. There are a LOT, so be warned.

Now, we need to put Christmas away and get ready for Finn's THIRD birthday! Not sure how three years have passed, but I hear they just keep going faster and faster the older your kids get. Yikes! We hope you all had a wonderful Christmas, a safe New Year's and that 2012 treats you well.