Sunday, March 28, 2010

Frugal Bookcase

We have been storing Amelia's books on the lower shelf of her changing table. As you can imagine, that shelf wasn't meant to hold that much weight! The shelf kept falling out on one side and I knew we needed another place to store books!

Anyone who has visited us knows about our dresser solution for Jason:


Stackable wire cubes! Jason had so much stuff piled on top that we were wanting to get a few more for him. Since they are only sold in 6-packs now, we hesitated since we only needed 2 or 3. My sister suggested that we use the extras as a bookcase for Amelia. Great idea! Except, as you can see, Jason cleared off and organized his "dresser" while I was gone so we don't need extra cubes for him!

So, we took Kim's idea and used two milk crates that have been sitting outside by our door for about a year and made a bookcase for Amelia:


I kept her holiday books seperate and they are still on that lower shelf of the changing table:


So much better!

At first I felt sad that we couldn't get her a real bookcase because of space and finance issues. Mostly space issues, though. Jason said he loved the milk crates and it looked nice. He then reminded me that this solution for book storage suits us. We like to recycle and re-use whenever we get the chance and this is just one more way we have been able to do that! Plus, we spent NO money on this :) That's what we call a win-win situation!

So that's our frugal, world-saving idea of the week!

The Rest of Our Week

Amelia and I are back in Milwaukee now, exhausted. We did do much fun stuff while we were home! My mom and sister have Wednesdays off, so we had a fun day planned. It started out with Amelia's one-year pictures at Target. We got some good ones, suprisingly, despite Amelia being a royal pain. It was nap time, so she had her reasons. I will share those pictures when I get them!

After Target, we headed to the Mall of America. My dad had picked up some discounted, pre-paid tickets for Underwater World from his work for us! Amelia loves fish tanks, so we thought she would have a blast. She did! She was so excited. Here are some pictures from our time there:

Baby sharks:



Group shot in the "North Woods Walk":


I like it when the animals are laying on the glass like this:




Amelia rode around like this a lot:



They have a cool new jellyfish exhibit that opened last week. It was a big hit with Amelia!



We took Amelia on the carousel and this is how it went:


Not well! She was so scared :(

On our way home from the mall, we saw some turkeys!


For dinner, Amelia and I headed to Lisa's house to grill with her and Marie. I don't have any pictures but I do have this video:

video

Lisa has a stash of toys at her house for her nieces. Amelia loved this one!

Thursday we ended up staying in MN instead of driving home because I didn't work until late Friday. Since we had the day and everyone was at work, we went to go visit Sarah (Lisa's sister) and her famliy since we hadn't seen them in almost a year! It took us about an hour and a half to get there and it was such a nice drive! Once we got there, we were greeted by this little guy:


He just hopped right in and then went back to see Amelia:


His name is Twin (after the MN Twins). Their other kitty is Viking (yep, after the MN Vikings).

While we were there, we enjoyed some outside playtime in the cold (high 20s). Amelia borrowed a fleece suit from Sarah's youngest, E, so she could play outside with the big girls while E napped! R brought Amelia their Little Tikes car and we were sure Amelia wouldn't know what to do with it so we told the girls to be careful and not push it because Amelia would probably just stand with it. Well, she suprised us both and climbed right in and started "driving":


I told you all she was a smart girl! It must be all that time she spends in the car...

R and H "made thunder" on top of the car, which Amelia thought was great:


We had a great time with our friends!

We spent Thursday night at home since we had barely seen my dad on our visit. We grilled some steak and had baked potatoes. It was a pretty relaxing night, which I really needed.

Friday morning, I needed a new tire... So my dad brought my car in right when they opened so I wouldn't be stuck there all day waiting for tires. Once he got back I loaded up the car and we went to Subway for lunch with Grandpa:


Our drive home was a little shorter than normal since we only stopped once! It was fairly peaceful too. Amelia napped most of the way and played with her toys. This guy, however, was so annoying:


Daddy was glad to see us when we got home! We unloaded the car and I got ready for a long night at work (we had a midnight movie). Yesterday Amelia and I finished unpacking everything, stopped by the bowling alley to see a friend and when daddy got home we did some cleaning! It was nice to have last night off to spend at home after a long week.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Auntie's Golden Birthday

Last night was a late night. Amelia was up until nearly midnight! She cried and cried when we put her to bed and when we would go in after a while, we found this:


We would let her out, to burn off energy, and she would just rub her eyes. She was so tired but was fighting it so hard!

Today Amelia, Kim and I spent the day together. We had lunch in St. Paul at Cossetta's (yum!) and went to Como Zoo and Conservatory to celebrate Kim turning 23. Amelia had a great time at the zoo!


Here is a collage of some of our favorite animals that we saw today:


Anyone else see a pattern? Amelia loves big cats. One thing I was glad to actually see for once was this guy:


It is so hard to find the wolves usually but not today! I used my zoom and got in close enough for a blurry, but decent, picture.

After walking through the zoo we headed to the conservatory. I was excited to go to a particular part, the "sunken garden". Guess what? It was closed for a show change today! This was the best view I got:


I snuck a photo when a worker was bringing in more flowers. I was pretty bummed!

Before we headed home, we stopped in Stillwater to take a peak at this year's flooding:





You can see that the water is so high that the lift part of the bridge has been raised and the bridge is closed!

Once we got home Amelia had some fun outside:



She loved the ball I got her at Wal-Mart:


Once our parents were home from work, we all went for a birthday dinner at the Mongolian Barbeque. After dinner Amelia got a bath in a big girl tub for the first time!


We have another bug day planned tomorrow so I should hop in the shower and get some sleep!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Back Home Again, in Minnesota

This morning Amelia and I hit the open road and headed north to MN. It is my sister's golden birthday tomorrow and we came up to suprise her. Amelia was a good little travler, as usual:


This guy, however, wasn't a good traveler:


Lucky joined us, as an additional suprise for Kim.

Once we got to my parent's house, Amelia sued up some of her energy that she had stored up from the drive. She was all over the place. She was just in her diaper, socks and a new hat from Nana. It was a funny sight:


Amelia and I met Jason's sister, mom and Kory at Barker's in Hudson for dinner.


It was tasty. (I had a bison burger, Jason)

Auntie Liz and Amelia walked the length of the restaurant!


Now if only she would show some interest in walking alone! Wait, she would need some balance for that...

We have a busy few days ahead of us!

A Clean Shave

Well, I came home from work the other night to a bathroom with hair all over. A trash can of hair. A drain clogged with hair. You get the idea, right? Well, then I found this:


Apprently, boredom causes the urge to shave one's head. I am going to be honest, I don't like it. He says that he has always wondered what it would be like and now he knows. I hope that that is true and that this will now be out of his system. Here are before and after shots, side by side, taken by Jason himself.



**I should add that Jason did attempt to clean up. He just didn't do too thorough of a job...

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Auntie M

On Tuesday, my friend Marie came down to Milwaukee to visit us for a few days. We have been having some awesome weather this week, so we went on a walk right after Marie arrived so we could enjoy the weather and she could stretch her legs after the long drive. We walked about 5 miles and near the end Amelia fell asleep:


I couldn't even get her to wake up when we got home. She was out cold!

Tuesday night I wowed Marie with my domesticity. I cooked dinner. Complete with apron and baby:


Wednesday, in honor of St. Patrick's Day, Amelia wore an adorable dress and a shamrock headband:


Can I share a secret? The "headband" is actually a garter from the dollar section at Target! See:



It works, right?

Around lunchtime, we went over to Marie's grandma's house so they could visit while Marie was in town. After that we went to the art museum. We had a good time! I am so glad that we have a membership so we can go often and not spend a ton of money.

We parked down the street, where my sister and I parked over the weekend, again. It went better this time as it was sunny and beautiful out. Amelia didn't like being ocvered in her blanket though. She kept uncovering herself:


She also wasn't a fan of me lowering the canopy of the umbrella stroller so it would block the sun.




As you can see, she didn't like the sun in her little eyes!


We had a great time with Marie. Thanks for the visit, Marie!