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April's World

Updated: 2018-03-07T15:12:37.144-08:00


Easter Pictures



(image) We had a lovely quite Easter this year and celebrated with Neil's folks. The kids enjoyed an egg hunt in the morning and another hunt at Grandma & Grandpa's house. I thought quite a lot about Neil's Grandma Mae, who left us in December. This is the first holiday that we missed with her. I found myself wondering if she was looking over us that day. Smiling at the kids. She always enjoyed putting together Easter baskets for all her great-grandchildren. It gave her much joy to watch them opening up all the treats inside.
Neil and I are looking at our summer calendar, trying to plan some fun activities. We may even be brave enough to take the kids camping this year.

Tea Party!!


I just dropped my mom off at the airport after her 2wk visit from Connecticut. We really enjoyed the time we spent together and all the fun stuff we did. My favorite was a Tea party that Evelyn and threw for the girls on my mom's side of family. The little girls had their own tea table and loved it.

Here's the "ladies":

(image) And the little girls:



A feeling of warmth during a cold January day


Shortly after Jan 1st I started recieving plant and seed catalogs in the mail. Oh how precious these became many a cold night this month. I thumbed through the pages dreaming of sunny summer with it's warm breeze. I still consider myself a novice garden. Planting what I like and learning from my mistakes. Just today as I played with the children outside I noticed rabbits had mowed down all my raspberry canes. I said a few choice words under my breath at Peter Cottontail. Ah, tis the life of a gardener.

Luckily I get smarted every year. Reading up on deer/rabbit/disease resistant plants. I won't tell you how much I spent on gardening last year, but it sure did surprise me when I added it all up. This year I have come up with a budget and a new plan for saving money. I'm going to try to start all my own plants by seed. I purchased a shop light and bulbs from Menards over the weekend and have my list of veggies/flowers to try. I hope also that this will be fun for the kids to watch.

Here is what I will be planting/growing this summer:

Contender Peach Tree
Saskatoon Berries
Meyer Lemon Tree
Broom corn (Decorative)
Zucchini Buckingham
Celery Safir
Tumbling Tom tomato (grown in a hanging basket)
Pepper fruit basket
Pepper Carmen
Brandywine tomato

I have some other seeds too leftover from last year that I will use. I figure I'm being pretty bold with some of these items, but it should be fun. I ordered most of these items from or

Christmas memories


Although we had some sorrowful times this holiday season, we were still able to have much joy. Here's a family picture from Christmas Eve. My favorite memory from that evening was my uncontrollable laughter during the "White Elephant" gift exchange at a pair of soup mugs with a goose handle. I must have needed a good laugh because I couldn't stop. Guess who ended up with the mugs? (BTW the kids love to eat cereal out of them)

(image) (image)
Here's what Santa brought the kids. It's been a wonderful addition to our home and we enjoy "making" all sorts of things with them.(image)

How do you say goodbye to a friend?


Today my friend Emilie was laid to rest. She lost her battle with Sarcoma in the early hours of Christmas Eve. Emilie and I met online while planning our weddings. I immediately identified with her because she had an "old soul". A soul that had given her years of wisdom at a young age. These type of people always draw me in. We kept in contact after marriage and through having children. She found she had cancer at the beginning of the pregnancy of her 2nd son. Shortly after his birth she found out it was uncurable.

I've watched her and her husband re-evaluate their lives to enjoy every single drop of time that God gave them. Last month when dropping of a meal I walked in to find her on the couch holding her baby and smelling his hair. (I found myself wondering how long it had been since I had done the same with my own children.) She was generous enough to let me hold her baby and let me smell his hair. This was the last time I was to see my friend. Had I know that what would I have said? "I love you Emilie?" I don't know. Part of me is happy to have such a fond rememberance of our last time together and another part feels guilty that I didn't go and see her when I heard she was finally failing. I guess I didn't want to crowd her or take and precious time left that she had away from her and her family.

Her funeral was so terribly sad and yet beautiful. She had the full Christmas choir at the Basilica and the angelic voices gave a surreal presence to her spirit rising from this earth into heaven above. I felt blessed to call myself her friend and better because I knew her. My heart goes out to her husband Steve and her young sons.

Goodbye my friend Emilie, I love you!

A life well lived


We lost Neil's grandmother this morning and now she is at peace. We were able to say goodbye to her yesterday. She was a wonderful lady, always happy to have her family around her. She will be missed.(image)
(This picture was taken just last weekend at her Christmas celebration.)

A second Christmas of Loss


Last year my grandmother passed away a few days before Christmas and this year it looks the same for Neil's grandmother. Something internal happened yesterday afternoon and in a short period of time she became comatose. Her wishes are to go naturally at her home, so it is just a matter of time now. I went over right away and spent 4 hours with her yesterday. It felt so wonderful to share time with her while her spirit is still with her body. I didn't have the chance to do that with my grandmother.

I am sad, but I feel at peace with her going right now. She doesn't appear to be in any pain and I am thankful for that. We're going to go over again this afternoon and take the kids to say goodbye. I'm not sure if Evelyn will understand any of it, but she will certainly pick up on our sadness.

Giddy little Mommy!


Evelyn is going to Wisconsin with her Grandparents this weekend to help celebrate her cousin's 4th birthday. (Happy Birthday Aiden!) I'm giddy with delight as I imagine Neil and I only having to care for one child. We've been planning fun stuff for our little "Wyatt weekend". It will be nice for him to have our undivided attention, which he's never had. Yeah!!!!

Obligitory Santa pictures


(image) We visted Santa over the weekend and it pretty much went how I expected. Evelyn was excited and wanted to talk to him. Wyatt cried his little eyes out.

Are you serious?


This thought went through my head yesterday after Evelyn told me she ate a light off the Christmas tree. At first I thought she was kidding, but then she showed me exactly the light she ate. Yup, she ate at least part of it. I looked it up on the internet, but there's no information. We're just making sure all her meals are high fiber, I don't think there's much else we can do.

We took the kids ice skating yesterday for the first time at a local park. Both were pretty wobbly and my back hurt after only a few minutes from bending over and hanging onto them. I just wish the weather was a little warmer. Skating in the teens/twenties is pretty cold for them (and me too!) I didn't bother bringing the camera because I knew my hands would be full.

But the most exciting thing that happend yesterday was we adopted our very own elf. (See I experienced a house elf at my SILs. Basically Santa "sends" an elf to your family to watch over the children to make sure they're good. Every night he flies back to the North Pole to report your behavior to Santa and in the morning he's in a new spot. (Magic!) The kids can talk to him, but they can't touch him or he'll lose his magic. Evie named our elf Fritz. This morning Evelyn raced downstairs to search for Fritz! It's really a lot of fun. Then when Christmas comes Fritz will go back with Santa until next year. (We picked ours up at a local Halmark)

Deep thoughts


All I seem to think about these days is how fortunate we are. There isn't anything we need that we don't have and really our list of "wants" is mostly related to having/planning fun with our family. It must be something about getting older or having children. I've always felt "lucky", but more so now with two health and happy children playing in the background.

We're participating in sponsoring a family for Christmas this year instead of buying some adult gifts. I had a magical moment a few weeks ago while walking to the cash register with a red bike in my cart. I felt like I was floating on clouds thinking of the small boy who would recieve this gift. I haven't felt the true spirit of Christmas in past years. Looking at the bike with a large gold bow on it makes me feel like there's hope in the world. Hope for humans to unite instead of fight. Hope for people to ban together to tackle world hunger and disease. Hope to save our planet from global warming.

The need to pray for others has also been very strong lately. I feel helpless with so many around us that suffer. Disease, health issues, cancer, death. It's been a very hard year for so many we know, but we've also seen so much life. So many friends and family continue to grow their families. God's will to create a circle of life is so visable to me now.

Wonderfully "Wicked"


Neil took me to see "Wicked" last night at the Ordway. It was one of the best musicals I've seen in the past 10 yrs. It was really amazing. The music, the singing, and the story were so original. I could clearly understand the singing and the set was really visual. I teared up a few times, which is a sign that I'm really into the show. The way the musical tied in the with original Wizard of Oz movie was so well thought. I won't give much away, but it was one of my favorite evenings with Neil.

Halloween Recap


Wyatt trying on a Dracula mask:(image) Carving pumpkins with Dad:
(image) The Boo Crew:
This year was so enjoyable for us. We had our friends the Orstads over for pizza and trick-or-treating. The kids really enjoyed each others company. Evelyn and Soledad held hands almost the whole night. Wyatt charged in the front of the group, just excited to be running down the street at night.

Thoughts for a loved one.


We're back from our trip to Boston/Connecticut for my brothers wedding. While we were there we got news that my cousin's husband passed away very unexpectedly. I was fortunate to meet him at a family reunion in September. A wonderful man with an immense love for his family.

I don't know my cousin intimately, but my heart aches for her, their children and their families. I think about them daily. I can't imagine what she is going through right now. Losing your husband at the age of 31 seems so cruel to me. Not enough time together. She has an amazing family, siblings and parents that are helping her get through each day.

At a time when there is such an immense hole in her life, I just wish there was something I could do or say. The distance between us prevents the normal helping of meals/childcare. For now I offer my prayers to her and their families. May God's guiding light help you find your way through the darkness. All my love.

Our first trip to the hosptial


Yesterday was our first trip with one of our Children to the hospital to have some dental work done. I was really scared because of the anesthetic; I had a bad experience a number of years ago when I got my wisdom teeth removed. It was a long day with lots of waiting. Neil held Wyatt while he was being put under while I sat in the waiting room and cried. Luckily there were other parents there who talked to me and helped me feel better. One of the mom's had a little girl who was having teeth pulled and ended up with a few root canals. My heart sank for her.

Wyatt ended up with 6 cavities filled. Oy! I keep telling myself at least we caught this when we did and not later. When Wyatt started rousing they came and got us. I got to hold him and after 1/2 cup of apple juice he took another little nap on my shoulder. He just wasn't ready to get up quite then. When we woke him up 40 min later he had a big smile for us and I knew my little buddy was ok.

He was starving when we came home and he ate a ton of dinner and then was ready to eat again 1 hr. later! He slept good last night and as far as I can tell he doesn't know what went on. Overall it was a good experience for us. The medical professionals had great communication and we didn't have any surprises. For now, we'll be focusing on keeping his teeth clean and flossed. It's wonderful seeing his teeth white and not yellow.

My last day in my 20s!


How have I done on my "goals" of this past year?

1. Try a new recipe every month
2. Exercise regularly
3. Create a family scrapbook
4. Give up my daily diet coke
5. Become more organized
6. Keep the kid's scrapbooks up to date
7. Make regular "Dates" with friends
8. Volunteer to help and organization or event
9. Make a new friend
10. Read more books by authors I don't know
11. Donate unused items/clothing
12. Research presidential candidates
13. Help a friend/family or neighbor in need
14. Read food labels before buying
15. Create more relaxing/recharging moments for myself
16. Think before I snack
17. Take a moment to enjoy my children everyday
18. Do something special for my 5yr anniversary
19. Find a new way to manage stress
20. Educate myself how to lead a greener life
21. Memorize Neil's cell number
22. Give blood
23. Write more letters
24. Eat less processed food
25. Be proud of myself
26. Attend church more regularly
27. Appreciate my husband more often
28. Recognize special dates in other peoples lives (bdays, anniv...)
29. Try to be more positive in nature

The only thing I didn't accomplish this year was give blood. Something to think about and try to do this next year.

On the eve of my 30th birthday I'm not feeling nostolgic or sad, but I'm not feeling extremely happy about having to say I'm in my 30s either. It's more indifference. One number isn't going to define who I am or how young I feel. Overall my 20s were a very fun place to be. Meeting Neil, a marriage, a new house, a daughter and a son. I'm thinking there won't be so many life changes in my 30s. Maybe a little more time for relaxation and more time for Neil and I. I predict vacations will be more enjoyable as the kids become more independant.

I feel very lucky to have been blessed with 30 years of health and happiness. Happy Birthday to me.

Dental dismay!


Yesterday was Wyatt's first trip to the dentist. Unfortunately we didn't come out with a healthy check-up. He has decay (cavities) on at least 4 of his 10 teeth!!! I knew of at least two of the teeth and thought they were just discolored, but nope, it's decay. I felt enormous guilt at first, but the dentist said that this is a result of not enough enamel, and that was determined when he was developing as a fetus. (again more guilt felt, since I "grew" him). The thin enamel is present on almost all his baby teeth. (sniff, sniff). So we'll have to go to Children's Hospital and he'll be put under so that she can Xray the teeth and treat them.

The "putting under" really scares me since neither him nor Evie have even done that. We'll schedule the procedure some time in the next two weeks. My poor little guy.

Evie's first day of preschool


Evie started PreSchool on Tuesday and it went as well as I could have hoped. She was really excited all morning and when we finally got to school it was evident that she wanted to be there. The program that she's in is twice a week for 2 1/2 hrs. I stay part of the time every Tuesday.

She kept asking me to leave, ha! I guess she's not as dependant on me as she use to be. I was happy to see a diverse class of children including a handicapped child. It's been hard trying to expose her to different things/people staying at home and I think this program will be just what she needs right now. A few of the children could even write their names, very impressive. Evelyn is the youngest in the class with a late August birthday.
(image) Here she is exploring her new locker!

Labor Day recap


This past weekend we travelled to Vandalia, IL for my grandparent's 60th wedding anniversary. We took the drive down in 2 days and the weekend was a blast. I was able to see cousins that I hadn't seen in 10 yrs. Meet new additions (spouses and babies) that I had never seen before. At first it seems overwhelming to belong to such a large family, but after a short time you realize that's what they are: family.

Sat. night was a large celebration and everyone really enjoyed themselves. Sunday we had a mass at my grandparent's church to celebrate their marriage. Spending time with my Dad's side of the family makes me sad that we don't live closer. I really enjoyed the company of my cousin's and aunts/uncles. I think we'll try to go down at least every other year now.

Here's the Themig clan (8 missing from the photo). We are the ones in blue in the back.

Evelyn's 3rd Birthday


We celebrated Evie's 3rd birthday at the park this year. She invited a few little friends and it was really so much easier than the large parties we've thrown in the past. The kids played on the playground equipment, ate lunch/cake and painted turtle stepping stones that my MIL had made. There was almost no setup and a fast and easy clean-up. This just might be our new spot for b-day parties for the kids.


Summer Days


Wyatt and I headed out to Connecticut the first weekend in August to help throw my sister-in-law, Erin, a surprise bridal shower. It was hard keeping a secret for that long, but it was so much fun to surprise her. Evie stayed in MN and enjoyed spending time with her grandparents, dad and a friend. Having only the responsibility of one child for one week truly felt like a vacation. Wyatt ate up the attention from family and friends. He rarely threw a tantrum and was a real trooper in the airport. (Both our flights were delayed going and coming).

After about 5 days I really started to miss Evie. I found myself thinking about her often and longing to hear her little voice on the phone. When I returned she didn't leave my side for the rest of the night.

I'd love to start a tradition every summer of taking the kids out to Connecticut. It's so relaxing at my parents house. I miss the beach/shells and summer smells. We spent a lot of time hanging in the shade of my parents apple tree. Wyatt enjoyed helping himself to all the apples that had fallen on the ground. As the summer is starting to wind down, I'm already thinking of the possibility of taking both kids out to CT.

Here's Wyatt with a little stranger anxiety and his Uncle Ryan:
(image) Playing on the beach:
(image) Enjoying an apple from Grandma's apple tree:

Weekend at the Cabin


(image) (image)
Here are a few pictures from last weekend at Neil's folks cabin. It's the first time we've gone somewhere as a family. The cabin is located on Lake Superior in Port Wing, WI. Overall the trip was relaxing. The drive was a little long for the kids (3hrs each way) because they are not use to being in the car that long. The weather was mild, but windy so pants and sweatshirts were our attire, which felt funny for July. Evelyn loved "going" on her potty on the porch. We all slept, eventually, at night after some family goofing around to get some energy out. We came back relaxed and looking forward to our next trip back.

4th of July pictures


We went strawberry picking for the 4th of July for the first time. We headed out to Pine Tree Apple Orchard in White Bear Lake. The strawberries were smaller that the ones in the store and also sweeter. They didn't last as long in the fridge, so I ended up freezing some of them. Wyatt spent most of the time eating the berries we picked. Evelyn spent most of the time as the "Strawberry Police" yelling at her brother to stop eating. Strawberry picking is pretty slow going unless you hit some plants that were loaded. I don't think it's a family activity we'll do every year and it will be more "fun" for everyone when the kids get a little bigger. We do plan on going Raspberry picking soon.

Words, Words and more Words!!!


Something has "clicked" in Wyatt's head and he's started talking this week. It's been an explosion of words and he's eager to mimic what you are saying. Here's the words he has so far. The last 6 he just said the past two days.

Ev (short for Evie)
Thank you

Evelyn started talking at 10 months, which I know was super early. I've been wondering how Wyatt will fair since his gross motor skills have been so much better than Evelyn's early on. (He's 14 months old) I look forward to all the words to come and for communication between us to become easier.

Summer update


Is it really July already? I feel like June zoomed by us!!! My mom came out for 2 weeks and it was such a nice visit. We did alot of work in our yard pruning trees and planting new things. I didn't realize how much work our yard needed until this year. The kids ate up her attention!
(image) Neil and his dad started our deck project. I think by the end of this week the framing should be done and Neil can start laying deck boards. Our gazebo kit is being delivered sometime this week. How exciting! (image)