Saturday, December 25, 2010

Hello, goodbye

Goodbye Minnesota, cold weather, snow, and work.

Hello Florida, sunshine, and family! We're too busy to really blog now, but we'll do it when we return to our life stuck indoors. Merry Christmas!

Nina has pink eye and an upper respiratory infection, so please send prayers for Christmas. It's a chilly 60 degrees, the guy at the pharmacy just told me and Kara to "stay warm" haha.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

We went to Aunt Annie and Uncle Adam's house to celebrate Christmas with cookie decorating, games, Charlie Brown, and presents. Nina got the hang of ripping paper and looks extremely cute in the sweater than Aunt Annie knit for her.

Cousin Gus also got in on the action

We spent a fun evening with Emily Kaiden and we had a brief visit with Mary Sue, too. Despite the difficulty of parking downtown, getting to see Emily was well worth the struggle and Nina added some conversation.

We went to see a Christmas Concert at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church. The music was fantastic, Nina enjoyed the show, laughing and smiling at the kids in our area. Only twice in the hour-long show did we have to quickly give her a pacifier as she tried to sing along with the choir.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Snowed in

Well, following the "snownami" of 2010, snow plows didn't get to our street until early Tuesday morning. If it hadn't been for a fun celebration with some family on Sunday, the extended weekend had the makings of the 12 days of Christmas gone wrong: 5 frozen church goers, 4 stuck cars, 3 shovelers shoveling, 2 feet of snow, and one snow plow driving the wrong way.

What did we do when stuck inside for such an extended amount of time? We made another video! We actually tried to cut down on the amount of pictures we're storing by deleting some unnecessary ones, but in doing so, we found some funny outtakes and silly faces and decided to put together a short video:

Friday, December 10, 2010


We recently shared a holiday tradition with Nina by going to the Holidazzle parade, visiting 8th floor Macy's, and meeting Santa. It was a relatively warm evening and we all had a great time.

After watching just a few minutes of the parade, we hustled over to Macy's. We beat the line and enjoyed the fact that Nina was little enough that she didn't know that we had skipped a lot and was content to look at whatever was in front of us. Both Santa and his elf commented about her laid back attitude.

After all the fun of the parade, the display, and meeting Santa, downtown Minneapolis had one more treat for us. As we walked through the St. Thomas skyway, we stumbled across a magazine cover featuring our famous friend and one of Nina's favorite walking buddies, Adam. No Christmas celebration would be complete without him!

Monday, December 6, 2010

5 Months

Nina is 5 months old today and we look back on a month which included growing teeth and drooling, her first trip to Nebraska and drooling, Johnny Jump-up and drooling, and time spent in the snow with freezing drool. It's crazy how quickly time is flying and we're all excited for the upcoming month of holiday fun and our trip to Florida! We've been somewhat surprised to see that Nina has remained a blue-eyed babe, we'll see if it stays.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Walkin in a winter wonderland

Being in Nebraska reminded us how much Nina loves walking outside, so today we bundled up and took a trip around Como Lake. She had a good time looking at all the pretty, snow-covered trees.

The Christmas season has started inside as well. Nina has been dancing to the seasonal tunes while watching decorations go up throughout the house. She and Kara trimmed the tree and Nina once attempted to pull it down.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

All I want for Christmas...

... is my two front teeth:

Nina's had plenty of quality time with Nana this week while Barb is on vacation. The two have been reading together, taking a car ride or two, and inventing new games. Tonight we all went to a local coffee shop for P.J. Stories, a night of storytelling. Nina was captivated by the two stories, the Magic Gourds and the Polar Express. She turned all of her attention to the storyteller, the man wearing green on the stage. She enjoyed seeing a bunch of kids dressed in their pjs, too. The pictures don't show it, but she's also been moving her tongue a lot more these days; we think it's another sign that she'll like starting solids in a couple weeks.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

New faces in new places

One of the best parts of visiting Nebraska was the opportunity to see some friends and family who hadn't yet met Nina.

Carly was funny, as always ----- Amy had the knack; she'll be a good Aunt & soon

Nina also got to meet Jake's puppy, Nelli. She was reminded of her other "cousin" Gus who's a bit bigger and more mature. Nina watched Nelli with extreme interest and liked petting her.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Road Trip

Nina made her first trip down to Nebraska and did a stellar job. She slept the majority of the car ride both ways and liked looking out the window when she was awake. The bad road conditions at the start of the trip caused us to spend a surprise night in Owatonna, which meant that Nina got to see all of her grandparents on Thanksgiving day.

She had a wonderful time at her first Thanksgiving meal. Many thanks to Susan and John for their warm hospitality. The meal was fantastic and a fun time was had by all. Nina is excited to meet her newest second cousin next month & sends best wishes to Ashley & Matt.

Laughing with Laura-----Loving time with Uncle Jake and Kelsey

Nina played a lot with Nana and Papa, finding new toys and laughing along. We'll post more stories and pictures soon.

Hammer Time!----------------------Little gymnast

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Working at the U of M

Nina offered her services to the University of Minnesota this past weekend, taking part in a study designed for 4 month olds. Nina happily wore her U of M sweatshirt for the on-campus experience. The research focuses on the developmental course of sensitivity to pictorial depth cues and Nina was up to the task. She was shown a series of shaded faces, sometimes accompanied by lights and/or ringing bells. The researchers then gauged her reactions and interest level. Nina was a little over-zealous at times, as the researchers asked Kara (who was blindfolded so as not to influence Nina) to hold her still because they couldn't record her eye movements when she was jumping in excitement. The photo below shows some of the faces in the background. To learn more about the study, you can visit:

Below are some photos from the successful Turkey Bingo night, courtesy of Julie Ann Williams. Thanks JA! You can see Lucy and Nina leaning on their prize turkeys, while Everett holds tightly to his dobber that saw plenty of use. Please pray for safe travels for us as we try to head to Nebraska on Wednesday, hopefully we can beat the blizzard!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Babbling away

Nina has been babbling a lot lately, especially at night. Apparently she likes giving herself a bedtime story. Here's a video showcasing her latest chats.

The photos and movies are piling up, and, as a result, we've needed to get an external hard drive. Can you tell she's our first child?

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Busy, busy, busy

It's been an action-packed weekend and Nina has been having quite a bit of fun. She's visited with a lot of people. She started the weekend by winning big at turkey bingo. Many thanks to the Tranby family and little Everett for the invite and congrats to baby Lucy who was also a winner.

The photo below is from brunch with some Young Life friends and their little ones too --Gretchen Merritt's Logan (born 4 days earlier than Nina) and Katie Schmidt's Britta (almost 7 months; check out her awesome sitting-up skills). They had an excellent time together. She's sporting her Swiss sweater in the photo on the right, thanks to Grandpa Rod and Grandma Katie. Nina cherished time with them while mom and dad went to the terrific new Harry Potter movie with Aunt Annie and Uncle Adam.

The tooth is still cutting through and Nina is confused by some her new teething toys. She's had more fun in her bumbo lately too, especially when she's worn out from her workouts in the johnny-jump-up. Thanks Jess!

More photos and stories from the busy weekend will follow. Stay tuned...

Monday, November 15, 2010

Jump-Up Video

Here's a video of Nina showcasing her johnny-jump-up skills as well as another odd, new trick featured at the end of the movie. She loved looking around during a trip to Target yesterday and then was pretty tired after all the jumping.

Last blog post, we mentioned Nina might be getting teeth in the next month or so... well, it looks like we overestimated the time, as one of her bottom teeth is already starting to break through. AUGH, she's growing so quickly!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

The snow makes ya wanna... JUMP JUMP

Nina has a lot of new things going on these days. She woke up to her first snowfall and loved going out in the brisk weather.

Later, because she has been so active, we decided to try Nina in the Johnny-jump-up. She had fun bouncing, spinning, and just standing. Many thanks to Abby!

Nina's bottom gums are also a bit swollen so it looks like her first teeth are on their way in the next month or so.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Giggling and Going

Tuesday was Nina's 4-month check up & she continues to be very well, despite a little congestion. We're so thankful for a healthy baby! She weighs 15 pounds on the dot, putting her in the 77th percentile and she's in the 75th percentile for height.

We received a few tips on how to help her ears adjust to the change in cabin pressure on the upcoming flights to and from our Florida Christmas vacation. She fussed when given the shots and then slept the vast majority of the evening.

Here's a video of Nina giggling a bit, and of her on the move. She also has a new trick that we're trying to get on tape for a future video. If you want to see a past video, we've created a movie library and a link is in the upper right.

Many thanks to all veterans, soldiers, service members and their families for such service and sacrifice.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

More weekend fun

Nina made the most of her extra hour by visiting with family, making her first trip to the Mall of America, and sleeping a bit more. She had fun playing with Nana and showing off her new skills.