March 31, 2010

Back in the Saddle....

I've been in a bit of rut, lately. I blame Steve. You can blame him, too. It's just that he was gone for quite a while, then he came back for a few days and I got sick right away, and then he left again for a few days and somehow in all that confusion, I got really behind on everything. Laundry, dusting, vacuuming, mopping, cleaning the bathrooms, and as you may have noticed, blogging just took a back seat to hanging out as a family and being completely lazy.

Well, I can safely say that I am back in the saddle, again! My house is so clean right now, I was walking around it, just looking for something that needed cleaning and couldn't find anything. For real. So, I figured I should take full advantage of this rarity and catch everyone up on our lives.
Let's start with Jack. My little Jack-attack is 9 months old as of yesterday. He is a whole new kind of different to me. Gabby took her first steps on the day she turned 9 months. Steven was mere days away from his first steps when he turned 9 months. Jack....well, Jack is no where near where they were, developmentally. He isn't even thinking about crawling, yet. I know I shouldn't compare them to each other but....that's impossible. They're all I know and I'm pretty sure I will always be comparing them to each other. Today, I cheered and made a big fuss after finding Jack sitting up in his crib after his nap. This is the first time he has gone from laying to sitting on his own. He has just started getting up on his knees to reach the the middle of his little activity table. He has 4 teeth. The bottom two are CRAZY crooked. I call him my little snaggletooth. If his adult teeth come in anything like these baby teeth, I see many trips to the orthodontist in our future. We should probably start a savings account, now. Jack feeds himself pretty well. I still feed him twice a day with some sort of mushed up food, but he feeds himself lots of Cheerios, crackers, mum-mums and other treats. He still nurses and has started "using" as sippy cup. He doesn't actually suck from it, but he gnaws at it and occasionally gets water in his mouth as a result. He's kind of fussy, lately. He's starting to warm up to Steve a little but would still rather have me hold him than do just about anything else. He smiles a lot and crinkles his nose when he's happy. He's very sweet and cuddly and sometimes I think he may be my favorite kid.

Gabrielle is...well, two. And that about sums her up. She has recently started telling us "No" or "I don't want to" in response to being told to do something. This has resulted in much fun in the Koper house. She is messy. Not just a little messy. She is a disaster area. Everything she eats is all over the table, all over the floor, in her lap, all over her clothes and sometimes in places that are truly surprising. She and Steven were digging in the dirt with shovels this afternoon and she tossed the shovel aside to dig with her hands. Somehow that's better in her eyes. She often comes up to one of us and squeezes our cheeks together and tells us to say, "Oooooooooooooo." I really don't know where this came from but she does it a lot. She doesn't like to have her hair brushed. She says it hurts. But on Sunday mornings, I usually sit her on my bathroom counter and let her play with my makeup while I blow dry or curl her hair and she doesn't mind at all, as long as she's got some mascara and bronzer to occupy her time. Sometimes she cries when I want her to wear a dress. She has to have socks on her feet at all times. If the seam of her sock is crooked at not lined up with her toes just the right way, she cries and needs it fixed as it is an EMERGENCY. She is silly and quirky and sometimes I think she may be my favorite child.

Steven is no longer a toddler. He is suddenly this tall boy. Not a little boy, but a real kid. Like a kid who can read and write and add and listen to conversations that we don't think he's listening to and then ask questions about them, later. I'm pretty sure his all-time favorite thing to do is argue with me. That, and make up really, reeeeeeaaaally long stories about racecars and tell them to me in the car when I just want to listen to the radio. He likes to ride his bike and he watches entirely too much TV. He reads EVERYTHING. We were all in the store the other day, and while standing in a certain aisle, Steven says, "Tro-jan. Trojan." Grrreat. He was talking baby talk to Jack this afternoon and I asked him to please speak real words to Jack so that Jack can learn. He then said to Jack, "Monkey! Elephant! Tree! Yellow! Beige!" Beige? He is always asking me if it is May, yet. He knows that in May, we are going to Florida for Aunt Cara and Uncle Kyle's wedding and he cannot wait. He often asks me, "What day is today?" Which cracks me up. Like he needs to know that it's Wednesday, the 31st because he's got some plans. He is growing into this whole person with his own individual thoughts and opinions and suggestions and ideas. He is so bright and independent and sometime I think he may be my favorite child.
Steven was pretending to ride a motorcycle when I took this - he is holding a plastic bin lid between his legs. He is not holding his crotch. Although, he does that often enough, I wouldn't be surprised if it is in a few pictures.

Steve and I are great. Steve has been home for a few weeks in a row, now so that's a bonus! He had to go into work this afternoon for an evening flight. He won't be home until past midnight, but we had the morning together and he took us all out to Cracker Barrel for brunch and then we went to WalMart and I got the kids' Easter basket goodies. He never has a normal schedule, but sometimes it works out for the best because we can run errands together on a Wednesday morning when nothing is crowded and stay in on Saturday when every place is a zoo. We've been riding bikes a lot lately to enjoy this beautiful West Texas Spring. If you're on Facebook, you may have seen his face after a fall while riding with Steven. You should know that he is recovering well.
I have big plans for the rest of our week. I plan to clean out the kids closets and cycle out all their winter clothes for summer clothes. I know. It's riveting. Today, it is 92 degrees outside and absolutely gorgeous. I think spring is finally here to stay and I have never been so happy to see it as I am this year. This has been the worst winter we've endured since I lived in Nebraska and we had snow (shudder) on a regular basis. Yuck. We are so thankful for the beautiful spring weather!

And now, you're all caught up!

Our Lord has written the promise of the resurection, not in books alone, but in every leaf in spring-time.
~ Martin Luther

Happy Easter!

March 26, 2010

Singing Kids

Steven and Gabby have a new favorite song. Here they are singing it. It's adorable. If I say so myself.

and now you're as caught up as my lack of time and energy permit!

March 6, 2010

Bath Time Fun

Jack has recently discovered

that there is nothing more fun

than splashing.

And when Mommy puts a washcloth on his head,

all he knows is that it is up,

and that it makes him happy.

March 3, 2010

Alicia's Visit and More

I hadn't seen my cousin, Alicia in over 4 years - since Holly's wedding - until this week. She made the trip out to visit with Holly and me and our families. Catching up and just spending time with our sweet cousin was such a blessing. Steven cried the day she left - he had SO much fun playing with his buddy. Gabby did, too she just didn't show it very well in that she never remembered Alicia's name. But they both really took to her and she was such a joy to have around! We sure wish she lived closer!

While Alicia was here, Steven had his second soccer game. It was a massacre. We really felt sorry for the poor little red team. Our Zebras were a powerful force and showed no mercy. We don't keep score -but I do. It was somewhere between 10 and 12 to 0 by the end. Steven scored quite a few goals and was very excited. He's proving to be quite athletic.

Gabby and Alicia, pre-game

After the soccer game, we went over to Holly and Jrs house for Nolan's 1st Birthday. The kids had fun at their cousin's party. Even Jack had a good time. And of course, the birthday boy made out like a bandit and had so much fun turning 1! Holly has some great pictures HERE.

Steve was supposed to come home on Tuesday, which marked 2 weeks since he left. Yesterday, he was told he wouldn't be coming home until the 20th, and within one hour tonight, he texted me about 3 different dates he's been given for a return. So really, no one has any idea when he's coming home but it could be sooner than later and that makes us happy! We've really missed him. So we're hoping to see him in the next few days! Yay! Here are a few pictures for Steve:

Steven looks so sweet in this one, and Gabby - I'm not sure what was going on with her

This morning, I went to Abilene's Diddos for Kiddos. It's a big consignment sale that the city does twice a year. Racks and racks of children's clothes, accessories, furniture, carseats, toys, shoes and gear filled The Round Building at the civic center and I had a little too much fun shopping. Almost every item I purchase was priced between $2 and $5...but when they rang me up and I had 65 items, it kind of added up. What? Gabby doesn't need 11 new dresses? Why not? They were so cheap! Jack could do without 5 pairs of cargo shorts? Okay, maybe I went a little overboard, but think of how much I SAVED! I did get a Kelty hiking child carrier for only $45. And since there are soooo many beautiful hiking trails around Abilene, that's sure to be money well spent. A-hem.

Here are all the clothes I bought. Whew!

Random story: I recently got caught by Steven sneaking an egg-shaped Reece's Cup. When he was denied the bite he asked for, he informed me very matter-of-factly that "God wants us to share, Mom."
I'm thinking about pulling him out of Sunday School. He's learned enough.
And now you're all caught up!