Madeline’s First Day of Soccer

Madeline’s first soccer season! It was so much fun! And how cute is she in her pony and soccer gear?? I love it. It was something we looked forward to every Saturday morning. It was the best for us to get out of the house early in the morning on Saturday as a family. She’d play soccer for half an hour and then play at the park that was right there for almost an hour. It was so fun to be together.dsc07113Madeline wouldn’t leave Daddy’s hand the entire season. We were hoping the last two sessions that she’d let go of the hand and play in a mini game with the other kids, but nope. Maybe next year 🙂

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dsc07887Madeline receiving her very first award! Yay for participation!

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And we tried really hard to get a picture with her buddy, Sammy, who she played with, but again, way too shy to stand next to him and look at the camera…dsc07900Madeline and Daddy playing some more after practice.

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dsc07913Her first soccer picture 🙂 <3 A picture taken by mommy is much better than paying an arm and a leg for a picture taken by a stranger that will not look nearly as cute!

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dsc07923My heart <3 <3

dsc07925And look at that form!

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Ellie at 5 months

dsc07691This adorable, non sleeping girl is 5 months! I feel like it has been the longest 5 months… I have really been struggling dealing with this no sleep thing. It was fine when I only had one kid, but it’s a whole different story when you have a threenager to love, have patience with, entertain, and actually get out of the house with (which also means looking and smelling presentable). So everyday is a work in progress. Ellie is a terrible night sleeper and I feel like I have tried every avenue to help her and figure out this mystery. And I am a terrible detective because I just can’t figure it out. I have tried about 5 different sleep swaddles – the miracle blanket, the velcro swaddle, the zipadee zip, Merlin’s magic sleep suit, Love to Dream swaddle, and sleeping on her tummy. So far, there’s no magical sleep thing. I just use the velcro swaddle cause it’s easiest for me to do in the middle of the night. She likes to be swaddled, but as soon as she escapes, she’s awake and can’t go back to sleep on her own. Heavenly Father has thrown a few tender mercies my way and she will occasionally sleep a longer stretch. Like the other night, she slept 4 hours straight! Haha woohoo! But then after that was up every 30 minutes or so. Anyway, I’m exhausted and my patience is thin. So I’m desperate to find an answer.

dsc07680I was talking with some friends about it and they asked if she had acid reflux. One friend said she cut out chocolate and that was the answer, and then one friend said she just gave her son a prescribed medicine for the reflux and then he all of a sudden started sleeping. So we tried the medicine. But she is not magically sleeping. I do feel like she settles down and falls asleep easier, and also has less spit up. But I still don’t know if she really has acid reflux or not. Some nights, she would have such a hard time settling down and she would cry and arch her back and fuss, so we would give her some tylenol thinking maybe it’s teething? And she would eventually calm down. But I hate giving her medicine for no reason. So I decided to try an Amber teething necklace. Nathan didn’t like the necklace idea, so we settled on an anklet. We tried that a few nights, but it made no difference. I don’t think she’s teething, so I don’t think it can be helpful yet. Some friends swear it works, but we are both a little skeptical. I’m more just hopeful that it works.

She takes 2-3 naps during the day. She always wakes up in the morning and is still sleepy. Poor baby that isn’t getting any sleep at night! She takes her first nap around 8:30 and will sleep about 30 minutes. Most of her naps are 30 minutes long and then right on the dot, she’s awake. But still very tired. I will try to get her back to sleep, but if she fights it, I can’t spend 30 minutes to try to win her to sleep, so I usually give up and let her sleep on me at the park or on an outing. Then she takes a 2nd nap around 1:00. I’ll get Madeline down for a nap around 12:30-12:45 and then I’ll go get Ellie down. I usually have 30 minutes to myself, then Ellie wakes up, I get her back to sleep, and as soon as she’s asleep, then Madeline is up from her nap. Then depending on how long her afternoon nap is, which is usually her best nap, she will go down for the night around 6 or 7. Then who knows how the night will go. Oh well, I won’t be sleep deprived forever, right??

dsc07718Ellie wears size 2 diapers and wearing 3 months size onesies and 6 month size jammies. Almost all of her baby hair has fallen out. She had long wispy baby hair randomly all over her head and then one big chunk on top, and it was driving Nathan crazy. He was always asking me to cut it off, but I said no way! I wanted to hang on to her baby hair and let it fall out on it’s own. Then he asked me again one day, and I was flustered, exhausted, and annoyed and I was just like, fine! Do whatever you want! He’s like, seriously? He got so excited, he grabbed his razor that he uses for his hair and went for it. After one swoop, he said, whoops, I think I cut that too short… I rolled my eyes and took over with SCISSORS, not a razor.

Ellie does not like to be on her tummy, so we don’t have tummy time too often. Although she needs it to work out her back muscles more. She has rolled over a few times, but just doesn’t care to do it. She sits in the bumbo a little bit.

This girl is still chill, patient, sweet, and always has a neutral face. It takes a lot to get her to smile and laugh. But Madeline can always do the trick. She really love her sister. Ellie adores watching Madeline’s every move. Which is great, but not great when I’m trying to get her to nurse. She really enjoys looking at everything around her. It’s fun that she is more alert now.

We sure do love our Ellie girl.

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dsc07685She is always blowing raspberries, or has her hands or some other object in her mouth.

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dsc07591I signed Madeline up for a tap and ballet class through the community center. She and I were both so excited about it. I took these pictures right before her first class. She was clearly ready to go!

We got there and she immediately clammed up and just wanted to sit with me. There were only 3 other girls in her class. But her teacher was super frumpy and not inviting. She didn’t ask the girls’ names, she didn’t introduce herself, she was not exciting in the least bit. Very lame. So Madeline was even more wallflowerish than normal. But she loved watching the entire thing and when we got home, she was dancing and doing some of the things that they had done. So I took her back the second week, but the parents were not allowed in. And of course Madeline did not want to go in without me. So we sat outside the door. They had a video monitor up so we could see what they were doing, but it was so tiny. I tried coaxing her in there, but it was hopeless. So we cancelled the class. It wasn’t worth the money or the time to take her to sit outside and not be able to watch anything. I was bummed, but oh well, she’ll participate when she’s ready. I sure do love this cute girl in her leotard and tutu and her self taught poses!

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This was Madeline’s first actual birthday party. I really had no idea what to do plan it or how long it should be, or what activities to do… So I did a lot of googling and scratching out and putting in ideas. But it all came together and the kids had a good time. Nathan had the grand finale idea and it was the best!

Madeline decided she wanted a Butterfly Birthday Party! Grandma Donna was gracious to host.

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We started off with reading The Very Hungry Caterpillar who turns into a beautiful butterfly.

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Then we had snack of butterfly crackers, cheese, and butterfly shaped watermelon.

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Then we tried to do a cocoon contest, but it didn’t quite work out. But it was still fun.
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Then all the girls got butterfly wings and the boys got some homemade caterpillar things 🙂

dsc07383We had a freeze dance party with the wings on and the kids loved that.

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The dance party was followed by the kids catching butterflies with their butterfly catchers.

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dsc07401Then we had a craft. The kids colored a popsicle stick and then picked out two pre-folded pieces of paper and a pipe cleaner. We helped them put them together to make a butterfly and Aunt Rachel hot glue gunned them onto their sticks.

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And then it was time for cake!

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Madeline was so shy and did not want to blow out her candles. So all the kids helped blow them out for her.

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Everyone patiently waiting for cake.

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The whole party group!

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And for the grand finale! This was all Nathan’s idea and it was the best. Nathan ordered a dozen butterflies and they came in tiny little boxes and asleep on ice. We took them off the ice about 2 hours before their release to wake them up. We could hear their little wings hitting against the box. Everyone got to open up their box and release their butterflies. It was magical!!

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dsc07569And the beautiful, amazing cookies made by Aunt Meggy as party favors.

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Madeline is THREE!

dsc07264I still cannot get over how old my baby girl is. She is THREE! I always felt like she was big and old, but as soon as Ellie arrived, I was blown away by how much older she seemed and how giant she was. It was like she grew up over night when I saw her at the hospital holding her brand new baby sister. It breaks my heart when we watch videos of her when she was 18 months -2 years and our little baby girl is no more. She’s still little and so cute and sweet, but she is just growing, growing, growing. It’s so weird when a phase is over and you realize that they will never be that little again. (tear) We love her so much, it’s just crazy. We adore nearly everything about her. Except the moments she has, reminding us that she is a 3 year old toddler. 🙂

At her 3 year check up, she was 3 ft 3.75 in (96%ile) and 37 lbs 5 oz (93.5%ile). She’s usually mistaken for older than she is cause she’s so tall.

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We didn’t notice any jealousy issues when Ellie first arrived, just a lot of copying mommy and wanting to be super involved with all things Ellie. Even though the pumping thing was annoying, it was a huge blessing to give Madeline the opportunity to feed Ellie and be involved. It was a good way for them to bond and for Madeline to feel important. She looooved to feed Ellie and I loved watching it. Once Madeline turned 3 and Ellie was about 4 months, that’s when she started to show jealousy. She started to ask to be held like a baby, she has asked to nurse a couple times (which I have let her try, but she doesn’t get any milk), one time she wanted me to pick her up and lay her down like a baby on the blanket and give her toy and she had that blank baby stare and sticking out her tongue, once in a while she gets annoyed and wants me to put Ellie down, she whines and fusses a lot more, and when she’s sad, she just wants milk in her special milk sippy and wants me to hold her. I try so hard every day to give her undivided attention, especially when Ellie is asleep. But sometimes, that’s just not enough, she wants ALL my attention ALL the time. Which is really hard. So she ends up watching a show or playing on the tablet to keep her from staying right by my side when I’m trying to tend to Ellie or get her to sleep. I’ll be trying to get Ellie to sleep and she’ll come in and just want to hang out on the bed and she’ll “whisper” all kinds of things to me. But her whisper is one of those loud whispers, and Ellie just perks right up. I’m still trying to work on balancing my life.

She is still very shy. She rarely talks to people and always wants me to do things for her or tell people things for her. Only a few people know the Madeline that we know. She’s just a whole different person in public and in the comfort of her home with familiar faces.

Occasionally, Madeline will see my chest and just want to put her face on it and breathe in deeply. I love those little moments that remind me she’s still my baby. And she still smells so sweet and yummy. Madeline is definitely in her terrible threes and it’s exhausting. She throws multiple tantrums a day, cries easily over everything, very whiney, stubborn, sassy, and very bossy. If we don’t do things her way, then oh boy, she’s out of control. I often have to tell her to change her attitude or we can’t go to the park or whatever. She’s also very defiant and independent. She wants to do everything herself, and if she doesn’t get to, then she’ll put whatever back and do it again. Like If I take her shirt off, but she wanted to, she’ll put it back on just so she can take it off herself. Or if I take her out of the car, but she wanted to get out herself, she’ll go back in the car and then go out of it. But she’s not like that all day, or even every day. She is still our very sweet, thoughtful, caring, helpful, tender, funny, happy, soft-hearted, kind girl.

dsc07274She loves helping out. When we go to Costco, she always asks if she can help bring stuff inside. So I’ll hand her the smaller things that she can carry, and when I hand it to her, she excitedly exclaims, “Thank you!” And if I ask a favor of her she says, “Sure I’d love to.”

Madeline is still in a crib. We really really need to get her into a big girl bed, but it’s been hard to find the time where Nathan and I can sit down and find a bed and mattress and sheets and everything. So we just haven’t. But it’s definitely time. When she wakes up in the morning, which is usually around 6-6:30, she will yell out from her crib (cause she doesn’t know how to climb out), “Mommy I’m awake!!” or “It’s morning tiiiiime!!” or “Raaaaach!” She used to call and call and it would get louder and louder, and Madeline has a really loud yell, that it would wake Ellie up and it would make me a not so happy camper. So I told her she’s only allowed to call for me twice, cause I will hear her, but sometimes it takes me a while to wake up. We have a blanket over her window to make it dark in there, so we can’t just put books in her bed for her to look at when she wakes up cause she can’t see them.

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dsc07263Madeline is such a smart girl and is always eager to learn. She has recently learned the word WHY. So after EVERYTHING, WHY? Why? Why? Even after I tell her why, WHY? It’s good, but also annoying, especially when I have to keep explaining something over and over, or she’ll ask a question that she already knows the answer to, or that I have just answered. She still loves to ask me where people are. “Where’s Daddy?” At work. “Where’s Emily?” In Utah. “Where’s Riley?” School. “Where’s Jackie? (our neighbor, who she doesn’t like)” In her house. ALL. DAY. She always wants to know where everyone is.

Madeline can sight read only the important things: Book of Mormon, Jesus, Target, Costco, Trader Joes, and Oooh La La (thanks Fancy Nancy). Whenever she sees a Costco truck on the freeway she gets so excited. And when she sees Trader Joes written on something, she will say it like she’s sounding it out “Trr-aaee-der J-j-oes. Trader Joe’s!” She also loves to tell us how to say things slowly, “Can you say that? Say, “Tr-a-der Joes.” And then we have to say it slowly and break it up like she does. She does that with a lot of words. Such a little mother. She loves to read books with me and to herself, and sometimes to Ellie. I adore hearing her “read”. It’s my favorite. She loves going to the library and finding new books and all the Fancy Nancy ones we’ve read a million times. She still loves reading all of her favorite board books, and she also loves Fancy Nancy, Lady Bug Girl, any cutesy Halloween books, Madeline, and the Crayons books. Her favorite tv shows are Daniel Tiger, Little Einsteins, and Tumble Leaf.

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She still loves to draw. She draws people now and it’s my FAVORITE. I seriously love it so much. She loves drawing small details too, like hands, shoes, eyebrows, eyelashes, chins, etc. She can write her name, but she’s still shaky on writing ‘N’s. I have to tell her what letters to write for her name, but she knows it starts with M! She can write these letters: M, O, A, I, C, H, S, F, E, L, D, J. She also still loves to sing, sing, sing! For her birthday, we got her a little guitar and she loves that thing. She’ll walk around and play her guitar and sing at the top of her lungs. She also loves sitting on Daddy’s nightstand and pulling out the cards he has sitting there, opens them up and just sings the content. She is so artsy and musical and I hope I can help her develop those talents.

Madeline loves to know where I am and what I am doing at every second. I don’t know what she’ll do when we move to a bigger house and she can’t see me or hear me at all times. That is one thing I (sometimes) enjoy about this little place, is that we can always call out to each other from one end to the other, and we always know where someone is. If I stare at something too long, she asks, “Whachoo looking at?” She’s so observant. Even with her listening. We don’t like her to say Gosh, we always have her say Goodness, and sometimes we slip up and say Gosh and she makes sure to correct us. Every time she poops, she has to turn the fan on and she plugs her nose. And every time she toots, she sniffs and then makes a stink face.

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This year in primary, we have had a Book of Mormon Challenge, so we decided to participate with Madeline. We read from a children’s board book called The First Book of Mormon Stories. We read evert night after two stories. After we read a story from there, she grabs her own little red Book of Mormon, and flips through it and asks, “What one we’re on?” and we tell her a book, and she flips through and points and says okay, and then proceeds to sing the first and second verses of Book of Mormon Stories. Every night. It’s sweet and we love it. We are so happy to have this as a habit and hope to continue it forever as a family.
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Madeline talks really well and can pronounce almost everything properly. But she still has a slight lisp and will occasionally still have liquid R’s. And when she says yellow, she says lellow. Nathan tried to get her to say YELL-ow. And she could say Yell, and Ow, separately, but when she said yellow, she just couldn’t get that Ye part down and would still say Le-low. It’s cute and she’s 3 so I’m not worried about it. When she says pretzel, she’ll say it like, Prentzel. Sometimes when we are talking, and I pause cause I can’t think of the word, she will fill it for me 🙂 haha I always think that’s so funny. She’s such a smart girl.

She still loves to be a mommy to her friends and to her baby sister. Watching her play with her friends is comical sometimes. If one of the mom’s tells her daughter to stop doing something and they don’t, then Madeline will call out to her friend to tell them to stop. One time she even started counting cause they weren’t stopping! Madeline’s best friends are June, Gwen, James, and Riley. She loves them all so much. She loves to be a mommy to her dolls and her new best friend, Lolli Love. Aunt Meggy took her to Build A Bear for her birthday and she chose a purple Care Bear named Lolli. She sleeps with Lolli Love every night and carries her around the house. Madeline likes to pretend there’s a baby in her belly and she will have me feel her tummy and then she’ll push out her tummy abruptly, like a baby kicking. It’s hilarious.

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Madeline loves her Daddy so much and would be the happiest girl if he never had to go to work again. I love watching their relationship and how much they love each other.

We love her blue, sparkly eyes, her loud, deep laughter, the way the corners of her mouth curl up when she smiles, we love her gappy smile, we love her sweet smell and sweet disposition, how much she loves to be the funny girl, we love her curly hair, and spunky attitude, how creative and smart she is, how thoughtful and kind she is, and how much she loves to be together as a family. We sure do adore our sweet Madeline Mae. Every night, as she lay asleep in bed, no matter what frustrations were felt throughout the day, we stare at her and talk about how much we love and adore that sweet, sweet girl. We are so lucky she’s ours.

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