Monday, August 31, 2009

Hannah Montana

A few days ago Alyce found her Hannah Montana microphone. It was a gift from our neighbors and best friends Jeff and Liz. From all of the American Idol we watch and Rock Band we play Alyce knew exactly what to do and she gave mom and I an impromptu concert.

What is really funny is that Alyce wasn't even singing she was just pretending to.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Playing with a New Toy

Last weekend at Babies R Us we picked up a new car seat for Luke. While we were there we allowed Alyce to pick out a toy since there was a ton of stuff for Luke in the cart. She, like all kids wanted this and that with Mom and I saying no to most everything. Alyce did go for the brightest packages so there is something to marketing based on a pretty box. Eventually Alyce picked out a pink watering can that we thought was an appropriate purchase. We bought it for her and brought it home.

The first thing as we got home Alyce wanted to play with her new can. So I set up a hose so she could continue filling up her watering can and Alyce started watering our tree. She moved on wanting to water some "showers" meaning flowers but we don't have any planted this summer so she had to make due with a few blooms on our clematis by the mailbox.

The next day, Alyce was outside and again played with her new watering can then moved on to some hopscotch and bubbles. She isn't getting much better at making bubbles but she has learned to slow down the bubble wand rather than swinging wildly.



Alyce and Luke were at the photo studio getting their pictures taken. Alyce is finally at the age where she will pose for pictures rather than freezing her in motion. Even though we can get her to stay still we can't get her to smile on command. Once we get the pictures scanned in we will be sure to post them.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Nap Time

Nowadays Alyce only takes one nap a day. She having only one nap time a day is more accurate. The chances of Alyce actually taking a nap during nap time seems to run about 50/50. Sometimes even if she does take a nap she wakes up in a worse mood then when she went down. Waking up on the wrong side of the bed perhaps?

On the days that Alyce doesn't take a nap we still require her to be in her room for nap time or as we call it quiet time. Mom uses this time to take a nap herself or at least recharge her batteries. During quiet time Alyce stays in her room and plays with the upstairs toys. The floors in her room are kind of creaky so we know when she is moving around and is awake.

Occasionally nap/quiet time will run long or I get home early and my little girl is still upstairs. Yesterday happened to be one of those days. Walking into the door I asked Mom where Alyce was and "upstairs playing" was her response. Mom went on to say that she hadn't heard Alyce in a while and that perhaps she feel asleep. It was time for her to get up so we go upstairs and open her door so that the noise of us moving around will wake her up rather than us doing it. We find doing this helps cut down on her waking up with a foul mood. Opening her door and looking into the room we see that Alyce had in fact fallen asleep in her room. She was laying on the floor, her head under her bed, some floppy disks arranged in a 3 X 3 pattern next to her, and wearing a single snow boot. It was to date the weirdest thing I've seen Alyce do. Sadly I didn't have a camera handy and wasn't able to snap a picture for the permanent record. Instead I will leave a picture of the old weirdest moment.

This picture, taken last April is of Alyce sleeping on our dog's bed. She woke up from her nap and came downstairs then after a few minutes walked into the kitchen, laid on his bed, and went back to sleep. If memory serves she slept there for half an hour.

Monday, August 24, 2009

It Breaks Your Heart

Today Mom and the kids met me for lunch. I needed a piece of electronic equipment for a coworker and Mom was nice enough to run it to to the office. Lunch was a rather peaceful affair, however, Luke woke up at the end, started crying, and that ran us out of the restaurant. In the car on the way back to the office Alyce asked "is daddy coming home?". Sadly we had to tell her that "no Daddy had to go back to work work". Well she must have been really dead set on me coming home because when I got out of the car and walked around to kiss her and Mommy goodbye she would only lean her forehead in for a kiss and started to cry. The poor little girl. She mush have really missed or wanted her daddy. It just breaks your heart knowing that all your kid wants is to be with you and there isn't much you can do about it.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Healing Tree

The other morning, Alyce was watching her new favorite TV show, Go Diego Go. On this particular episode, Diego and his sister, Alicia, rescue a daddy Pygmy Marmoset and baby Pygmy Marmoset. Once they are rescued, Diego and Alicia realize the Pygmy Marmosets each have a boo boo on their hand that needs to be taken care of. So, they take the daddy and baby Pygmy Marmosets to a healing tree, where a little tree sap from the tree will make their boo boos all better.

Later in the day, Alyce bumped her head on a doorway and she said, "Kiss my boo boo, kiss my boo boo." So, I kissed the back of her head and everything seemed fine. However, a few seconds later she said, "I need tree sap, I need tree sap." I was a little confused at first, but I soon realized what she was saying, she needed tree sap from the healing tree for the boo boo on her head. Well, while I was busy figuring out what the heck she was talking about, she was on her way to find a container to put the tree sap in from the healing tree that had magically appeared in our kitchen in the past 10 seconds. She found a container, got her tree sap and her boo boo was 100% better. Then she decided that Jake, our dog, needed some tree sap for his ears. We've been putting drops in Jake's ears because he had an infection in them, so Alyce decided to help him out too.

She hasn't mentioned the healing tree since that day, but I imagine we could hear about it at any time!

Thursday, August 20, 2009


I was listening to music on my phone and dancing with the kids when
the song "Life is a Highway" by Rascal Flatts came on. Alyce
immediately said it's my Cars! Yes, that's right she recognized the
song from the movie Cars. I couldn't believe it. My little girl amazes
me more and more everyday.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009


Today when I got home from work I got a request from Alyce. She wanted to make a castle. We weren't really sure what she meant since we haven't ever made a castle for her. We have in the past made a tent for her in our bedroom but we never called it a castle. Mom and I decided to make a castle. We took a few boxes put them on end and laid a baby gate across the top. We then strung her blanket across the front for a door and held it in place with a box of diapers. Lastly we took a few of her yellow blocks and used them for decorations.

Upon completion Alyce was ecstatic. She went on and on talking about her castle then rearranging some of her blocks. She would climb into and out of the castle over and over again. When Grandma came over later Alyce could barely contain herself because she wanted to show off her castle. She was dancing, jumping, and running all over the place. It was quite the site to see. When Grandma asked Alyce who made the castle she did give us credit by saying "Mommy and Daddy did it".

Monday, August 17, 2009

Swimming Pool Part 2

While Mom was feeding Luke I took Alyce into the kids play area. The play area consisted of a big bucket that would constantly fill with water and then dump itself out. There were water shooters of all sorts of which most of them could be controlled by turning valves which I thought was a nice touch. Alyce was mystified and terrified at the big bucket of water. From a distance she would watch it go through its cycle, however, when up close she would jump every time it dumped. She got over her fear and she and I walked around the kids area playing with some of the water shooters. While in the area Alyce must have been really tense as she never let go of my hand if I could even manage to put her down. There was a tunnel that ran from one side of the tower to the other and Alyce was drawn to it. Once there weren't any other kids in the tunnel I brought Alyce over then she and I crawled inside. While in the tunnel the bucket above us emptied its contents right in front of us. This must have been more than Alyce was ready for; she started shaking and yelled "mommy!" at the top of her lungs. She never broke into tears and didn't run away from the play area so it must have been more surprise than fear.

After our time in the kids area I noticed that the skies were starting to darken. I knew that Mom wanted to ride the water slides before we left so I went to relieve her of Luke duty. Right about the time I got to Mom over the loud speaker we heard that swimming was to be suspended due to weather. The pool rule about weather was that when no thunder was heard for 30 minutes swimming would be resumed. We decided to stick around for a while since it wasn't too terribly hot, Luke was asleep, and we were enjoying ourselves. Mom, Grams, PaPa, and I relaxed while Alyce examined every square inch of deck chair and the surrounding area.

The thunder continued for a while and after some time Mom and I made the command decision to call it quits for the day. We were going to get our hand stamped just in case the weather were to improve. It turns out that we didn't need the stamp. While exiting we were presented with two rain checks good for another admission before the end of the season.

Swimming Pool Part 1

On Sunday Mom and I brought the kids along with Grams and PaPa to the pool. We wanted to get in the water a few more times before summer was over and the outdoor pools close. This time we decided to forego our usual pool and went a little farther to another municipalities pool. This pool is a bit more expensive (1$ extra per person), but it does give you your monies worth. This pool has a big kids play area, two water slides, and a lazy river with inner tubes (for free).

The weather map on Sunday didn't look too encouraging. Mom and I thought we should give it a shot since we there weren't many days left in the summer. A lot of people must have had the same dilemma and decided to stay home. When we reached the pool the parking lot was almost empty and there was only a handful people inside. With the pool being so empty we were able to stretch out and everyone got their own lounge chair. Luke didn't need one since his chair had wheels. We got Alyce into her life jacket and we were in the water.

It took a little while for Alyce and Luke to get used to the water. Alyce walked right into the pool and kept walking right to the point she couldn't touch anymore. I wasn't nearly as worried this time compared to the past as she was wearing a life jacket. I have to give PaPa and Mom some credit they got it to fit Alyce perfectly. The jacket didn't come up and strangle her even though she was relying upon it for buoyancy. Once we got Alyce off of her back, her feet underneath, and calmed down she wanted to swim towards the ladder. She did her best doggy paddle and with some help she made it up to and on to the ladder. Once Alyce was on dry land she would turn around and want to come back into the water. I would help her back in, she would swim towards Mom, sit down, and the process would repeat. Mom was holding Luke while in the water and it took him a bit to get used to the cool water. When first placed into the water he would arch his back in protest. Anytime more of his body was submerged he would protest anew. By the time I was holding Luke he was more than content to sit in the water and even kicked his feet and bit.

After the pool we wanted to try the lazy river. I would say the lazy river is the best part about this pool. For the cost of admission you can get an inner tube and ride all day in a big circle while going underneath two waterfalls to cool off. There are single and double tubes available and for those with small kids they make a double tube where one of the tubes is solid so the kids can't fall through (brilliant!). Mom took Luke and I took Alyce with Grams and PaPa following behind. We had a great time taking a few laps around the pool. Alyce wasn't a big fan of the water falls and wanted me to "go around" rather than get her wet. I made half hearted attempts to keep her dry but I wanted Alyce to experience getting drenched. After a few laps Luke was getting hungry so Mom, Luke, and I got out while Grams took Alyce for another two laps in the river. By the end Alyce wanted to get out.


This weekend while upstairs with Mom, Luke, and myself Alyce was having fun with a tried and true child favorite toy, a laundry basket. Alyce pulled a basket off of the stack, sat in it, and called it her boat. She seemed to have fun just riding adrift in the ocean that was our bedroom but I wanted to add something to make her experience more active. I took a clothes hanger, gave it to her, and told her it was an oar so she could paddle her boat. She took to this and quickly became an expert at navigating the high seas. I decided to join along and crouched in a basket paddling my own boat too.

Later that day while downstairs Alyce must have thought her boat upstairs was much too roomy and decided to cast off in her life raft. So with her trusty telescope she was ready for adventure on the high seas.

Friday, August 14, 2009

One Two Four

Alyce knows how to count. Well she knows how to count to two. And I think she understands that two is more than one. However, I think she applies two to mean more than one. When we ask Alyce to count whatever is in front of her she always counts one, two, and then four. If there is more than three things she will say "one, two, four, two, four" some other list of numbers. Mom and I are trying to get her to say one, two, three, four and just recently she has been. Most days Alyce is feeling kind of sassy and skips three almost on purpose. I don't mind that she can't count to 10+. She really isn't old enough to do it anyway. Any child her age if he/she can count to 10 is doing it only by rote memorization and doesn't really know the difference between 7 and 8 except that one comes after the other (1).


Thursday, August 13, 2009

I Want, I Need

Alyce's vocabulary is constantly increasing. I can't even put a number on the words she knows. What is now even more fun / interesting is that she is learning to use her new found ability to communicate. Over the past few weeks Alyce has been starting to say I want and I need. Before then she would just say the name of want she wanted; apple juice being a good example. She would just say apple juice over and over again. So now she says "I want apple juice" and if we fail to get her some juice a few minutes later she says "I need apple juice". Her saying I want and I need is pretty cool with the one exception is that she will say it over and over again until we respond to her or get her some juice.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

New PJs

Last week Mom got Alyce some new pjs. These pjs are girlish nightgowns where her old pjs were girlish shirts and shorts. Upon seeing the new ones Alyce was in love. She kept saying over and over again "I get new jemmies". After her bath I got to put them on the first time and Alyce looked really cute in them. She was a big fan too. While reading her bedtime book she kept interrupting by saying things "blue jemmies under the cozy" or "I got blue jemmies on". It was all super cute.

The next day we switched her from the blue jammies with the ice cream cones to the white ones covered in tiny multicolored hearts. While brushing her teeth and looking in the mirror Alyce said "I look like a princess". She then started posing like a model on a photo shoot while standing on her bench. How cute is that!

Monday, August 10, 2009


Mom and I attended the fair on Friday without the kids for a date night. We had lots of fun and even rode some rides. But we knew we would enjoy ourselves even more if Alyce were to experience the wonder of the fair as well. On Sunday we packed up the family and attended the fair on the hottest day of the five day event. The temperatures by the time we got there were around 96 degrees in the shade. There was the occasional breeze but the day was still pretty miserable temperature wise, however, we persevered and had a great time.

Walking the few blocks from the parking lot to the fair grounds we first went into Agriland. Agriland is tent full of kid friendly farm related stuff. There are lots of farm animals to look at and pet like baby cows, sheep, goats, and pigs. Other animals such as baby chicks, chickens, and bunnies are there but are either in incubators or in cages so you can't touch them. Alyce was a big fan of the animals. She reached out and touched the ones that she could reach and got face to face to others. Alyce seemed rather interested in the baby chicks. I don't think she quite understood that they hatched from the eggs in the incubators. After looking at the animals we took Alyce's shoes off and she got to play in big bins full of wheat, corn, or soybeans. Alyce was first in the wheat bin and commented that she was standing in sand. Her analysis was correct, the wheat did look and feel like big grains of sand. While sitting in both the corn and the wheat Alyce filled up buckets full of material and then would dump it out. I would say that Alyce enjoyed her time in the tent but she was ready to go when asked if she was ready. We probably should have checked her a bit closer when finished. After the fair we found bits of wheat between her toes and a kernel of corn found its way into her diaper. Neither of those could have been comfortable.

After Agriland we brought Alyce to what we think the fair is famous for, waffle ice cream sandwiches. A waffle ice cream sandwich is exactly what you think it is. Take two fresh waffles, add a bar of ice cream between them, and viola a waffle ice cream sandwich. The biggest downfall to such a treat is that you are putting something warm next to something cold. That leads to a big mess unless you eat them quick. With Alyce's help we consumed ours quick enough that the only mess needing to be cleaned up is some sticky fingers.

Following the ice cream we showed Alyce the motocross that was taking place in the motor arena. She was interested at first but after a few minutes she was having more fun playing on the bleachers than watching the races. Reminiscing to when I was a child I remember playing on and underneath the bleachers. Either the bleachers are irresistable or it's like father like daughter.

After the motocross we reached the main event, the rides. Up to this point Alyce's ride experience is almost exclusively rides on a carousel. Almost any other time we've tried to get her on a ride it has ended in unhappiness or tears. But it has been a year since we've tried her on anything new so it is time to try again. The results were better than Mom and I could have dreamed. To ease Alyce into the rides we first put her on the carousel. I asked which animal she wanted to ride and her response was the "giraffes". Luckily for us we were third in line and were able to get the one she wanted.

Following the carousel Mom and I were in for a big BIG surprise. After Alyce got off her giraffe then walked over towards a roller coaster running next to the carousel. As she was watching the coaster finish up a cycle I asked Alyce if she wanted to go. She responded with a nod. Mom and I were both sure this was going to end badly so we wanted to give her as many outs as we could. We recommended that she watch the coaster for a little bit just to make sure she wanted to ride. As it was running I informed her that Mom nor I would be able to ride with her. After all of that I asked again if she wanted to ride. Her decision remained the same, yes. Or in her case a quiet nod. So I bring Alyce up the stairs and strap her in to the coaster. Before I have a chance to take her picture she is off like a rocket. Alyce wasn't ready either and for her first lap she was holding on for dear life. Mom and I thought for sure that she would be crying after the first lap started so abruptly. Instead as Alyce finished her first circuit, we get our first view, and she has a smile from ear to ear! Mom and I were both flabbergasted. Here we were expecting the worst only to experience the best. Our little girl was riding a roller coaster all by herself and enjoying every minute of it!

There were some downsides to Alyce's time at the fair and with the rides. She had her first taste of disappointment. Alyce wanted to go down the big slide and I wanted to go down with her. However, the rules of the slide stated that riders had to ride alone (no doubles) and had to be taller than the fence (which Alyce wasn't). So Mom and I had to break it to her that she wouldn't be able to ride the slide and naturally she was disappointed. Throw in the heat and no nap and she was moved to tears. For reasons beyond this blog I knew what she was feeling and I could only offer my apologies at not being able to ride the slide.

After the rides the entire family was toasted. We were hot, thirsty, and tired. We had a good time and I am glad we went. If it weren't for Alyce I doubt that we would have gone to the trouble. I don't know if she will remember this trip to the fair but Mom and I will remember it as the day our little girl rode her first roller coaster.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Alyce at the Fair.


The family is at the fair and it is hot! Alyce doesn't seem to mind.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Fair Parade

As written earlier, later on Sunday the family went to my hometown to see its fair parade.  On the way to the parade Alyce feel asleep in the car about five minutes before we parked.  Mom and I thought she needed the nap so Mom loaded up the stroller with the folding chairs, baby bag, and Luke then pushed it all up a hill to the parade route while I carried Alyce.  In my opinion there is nothing cuter than a child that has fallen asleep on their parent's shoulder.  I don't get to enjoy that very much as Alyce always wants to see what is going on and rarely ever takes a nap while out in public.  Sadly, I had to wake Alyce up from her slumber.

I woke Alyce up because the parade had started and I didn't want her to sleep through the entire thing.  I figured the police cars, color guard, and motor cycles would have been enough to wake her but I was wrong; she slept right through.  Once I nudged Alyce awake she was wide awake and ready to go.  She was generally interested in all of the floats going by and even waved to a few of them with my encouragement.  This parade also held a new surprise for her, candy.  We gave Alyce a bag and she and I moved to the front of the spectators to await the surgery goodness that was sure to come.  When the first person dropped some candy into her bag Alyce didn't really know what to think about it.  She looked at the candy, at me, and then Mom not really sure what to do with it.  After a few handfuls we moved back to where Mom was feeding Luke.  We gave Alyce a tootsie roll from her bag of booty and a second.  Alyce did continue to ask for more candy but we kept her to two.  Her disappointment didn't last though as Alyce received another prize.

I don't think we were even close to the front row but a representative of a float for the local hospital seeked us out and gave Alyce a multicolor full size plastic slinky.  The parade could have ended at that point and Alyce wouldn't have minded.  She stretched, bounced, and swung her new toy all over creation.  Her toy time experience was enhanced because she was riding on my shoulders and six feet of slinky stretchiness is much more fun than two.  I enjoyed having Alyce on my shoulders.  It is one of those things that only dads get to do.  Before we even had Alyce I would see other dads hoist their kids on high and I knew that being a dad was for me.

As the parade drug on for 2+ hours eventually we closed up shop and met Grandma or as Alyce likes to call her (last name omitted) Grams for dinner.  We weren't able to see Grandma earlier as she was managing her own float in the parade.  By time time we met for dinner it was coming up on 8:00.  Alyce, bless her heart was a trooper.  She had an action packed day, limited naps, large gaps between meals, and didn't complain a bit.  Mom and I really enjoyed our day with her and days like these are why we became parents.


On Sunday the family went out to my hometown for the parade that precedes the fair.  The fair comes to town every year around this time and going to the parade is part of the experience.  Leading up to the parade the kids already had a full day.  For lunch we took advantage of the unseasonably great weather and ate at a local park.  Mom and I had Subway sandwiches, Alyce had a peanut butter and jelly sandwich or as she likes to call it a "jelly sammich", and Luke had Similac soy formula (yum). 

After lunch Mom and I took turns watching Alyce as she took turns on the play ground equipment.  Alyce rode on some slides, climbed through tunnels, swung on the swings, climbed ladders, and for the first time rode a merry-go-round.  Alyce didn't ride the biggest slides.  She tried but upon sitting at the top she said they were too hot and didn't try again.  I can't blame her, the slides were warm and I'm glad that she made a decision based upon information (feeling the slide).


While one of us was with Alyce the other was with Luke.  Luke had a pretty good time at the park too.  While we were eating Luke was in his car seat looking up at the sky through the shade trees above us.  After some lunch he drifted in and out of sleep enjoying the cool breeze in his car seat.  Two hours at the park then we had to get the kids off for a nap in order to go to the parade later.

Mom and I really enjoyed the leisurely Sunday all thanks to an empty schedule and great weather.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Hide and Seek

Back in March I wrote about Alyce playing hide and seek.  Since then Alyce has gotten a better grasp on how to play the game.  In the past when I would say "where's Alyce" she could come running out of her hiding spot.  Now when I say "where's Alyce" she stays hidden but says aloud "I'm over here".  When we play upstairs Alyce's favorite hiding spot is in a little nook behind Luke's crib.  When she is standing there you can just see the top of her head.  Of course with her giggles and saying "I'm over here" we know exactly where she is.  However Mom and I pretend to not know her location and start looking in other hiding spots.  We open the closets, drawers, look behind doors, and behind the rocking chair.  Every time we go to a new location we ask "are you in here"?  Alyce, between giggles says "no I'm over here".  After looking in a few locations we go to look behind the crib and behold Alyce is there in her hiding spot.  Once we find her we give her great big hugs and tickles then we are off to go find a hiding spot for ourselves.

When we hide we don't give away our location like Alyce does by saying things out loud.  We don't have to.  Jake our dog likes to play hide and seek too.  Every time we are in a spot Jake finds us and continues to look at us even though we try to shoo him off.  Naturally Alyce picks up on this and knows to follow Jake's lead to find us.

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