30 January 2008

brothers & sisters & more brothers

Lars and I were reminiscing the other night how amazing it has been to see our friendships grow and change as we and many of our friends have added children to our lives. Where there was once just us adults having a nice leisurely meal - usually at some sort of restaurant sometime well after the 6 o'clock hour, now we typically gather at one of our houses around 4:30 so the kids can run rampant, eat a few bites of pizza, and be out the door at 6:30 so the bedtime ritual can begin. We parents try to talk about our lives over the loud chaos or between tears and yelling matches over who gets to play with what toy. Sometimes I think back to those nice, quiet meals and find myself looking forward to the day when the kids are older and we will be able to have those "adult dinners" again. But I also know when that day will come I will think back to the loud chaos of life with young ones and my heart will ache for what once was. . . ahhh, the perplexities of being a parent.

Okay . . . back to the kids. Thought I would share a couple of pics. Here are B and A with the Snyder kids Bjorn (born almost exactly one year after Bergen) and baby Signe (born this past December and is already 3 months old)! It will be great for Annika and Signe to have each other when the big brothers start to do what big brothers do. . . torture their little sisters! (Right Chris and Megan?!)

We also got to see our good friends Chad and Michelle this past month which was great because we hadn't seen them since Annika's birth. . . way too long. But such is life with kids. It just gets busier and busier and life seems to go by faster. But always a good time hanging with the Ness Mess.

25 January 2008

copy what?

Upon arriving at Walgreens to pick up a few photos ordered from of one of the thousands of Snapfish albums we have sent over the years, my parents were so "kindly" told they would not be able to take home the photos they had ordered. Instead they were going to keep the "copyrighted" photos at the store.

Copy what?

After my mom argued with the manager for about 15 minutes that in fact it was her daughter who took the photos, digitally enhanced them herself and uploaded them onto Snapfish for her loved ones to order as they wished - the manager finally caved. I, however, wouldn't be surprised if they have a photo of my mom behind the counter that says something like "keep a close eye on that one".

18 January 2008

look at me!!

Hard to believe, but Annika is 6 months old today. . . . and has very age-appropriately started to sit all by herself! She is such a happy girl who has a smile on her face all the time. . . who rarely makes a peep all day long (I know that one will change soon!). . . . who has become my little bird with her mouth wide open during meals and will eat pretty much anything that is offered to her (other then a bottle or sippy cup, of course!). . . who is finally starting to sleep better at night (thank goodness!). . . who loves to giggle at her brother. . . who lights up when I sing to her. . . who is truly a gift from above.

Happy 6 months sweetie!!

10 January 2008

sibling love

A Christmas card we received from our good friends the Pfefferkorns (who also welcomed a second child this year) commented on what a joyous surprise it has been for them to experience the love their two girls share for each other. She said, "witnessing the siblings bond was something that I wasn't really anticipating. It is so beautiful and touching." And as Amber always makes me do, I started to think about it and I couldn't agree more. There is little that makes Annika smile and laugh more then watching her brother be silly. And Bergen loves nothing more then just wanting to hold Annika's hand or bring her toys when she is crying. Yes, it couldn't be more beautiful and touching.

I know it will be short lived. Someday as we are taking a road trip and the kids are fighting over something which is nothing in the back of the mini van (yes, I said mini van!) I will think back to these special times when their love was so new and pure. And from what I have heard, this amicable stage quickly starts to come to an end as the baby gets mobile and into the older child's toys. So, here's to hoping Annika is a late crawler like her brother was. . .
This is a little long, but I downloaded it right after reading the Pfefferkorn's card. There are parts that couldn't have been more of a perfect example of the joy they bring each other.

little drummer boy

A little bit dark, but here is a rock star in the making. . . both Uncle Nels and our little drummer boy. . .

playing catch up

I am stealing a title from the Buurstra blog (Julz, hope you don't mind!), but that is exactly what I need to do. December was a crazy busy month for us and getting a chance to update just wasn't in the cards until now. So I am going to give the cliff notes, which in and of itself, will be a challenge given all the happenings and events over the past month. . . but I am going to give it a try.

So.. . . refill that coffee, put your feet up and settle in. . .

We went to see Santa on Saturday Dec 15 at our local community center. I wish you could have seen Bergen's face when Santa walked into the room - pure amazement. We were one of the first ones in line and our brave boy walked right up to Santa, sat on his lap, and ever so quietly told him that he wanted "cars" for Christmas. We had also been watching the Polar Express at lot at the time and B asked Santa if he came down on the train. . . oh, it melts my heart!!

Great-Grandma Betty's 90th Birthday Party
Shortly after our visit with Santa, we jumped in the car and drove to Duluth for my Grandma Betty's 90th birthday party. We had a wonderful dinner at the Boat House in Superior and I know that Grandma loved having her great-grandchildren there for the celebration. A very quick trip up and back. . . .

First Christmas Program @ Preschool
I worked and worked and worked with Bergen on the two songs he was going to sing in his very first Christmas program. . . . only to see him stand at the front of the church with this great deer-in-the-headlights look on his face and not even utter one word. It was great to see his whole preschool class dressed up in their Sunday best - they all looked so grown up. After the performance we came back to our house to enjoy some Bakers Square Candy Cane pie. . . a perfect ending to great show.

Let the Christmas festivities begin. . .
Dec 23rd. . . .Little Christmas Eve with the Birk family
Dec 24th. . . Christmas Eve afternoon with the Leafblads
. . . . Church at Tim and Pam's church and then back to their house for dinner
Dec 25th. . . Christmas Day morning with Peg and Great Grandparents
. . . . . Christmas Day afternoon at the Leafblads

Here are a bunch of pics from the different gatherings. . .

Feiro Baby Shower and Small Gourmet Gathering
The day after Christmas we drove to Duluth to be at the baby shower for Katie Feiro. We are SO EXCITED for Brian and Katie and I was thrilled to be at their shower . . . this baby is an answer to so many prayers! I sadly didn't get a picture with the mommy-to-be. . . it was a little crazy with all the people there! However, we did get some GIT and B-GIT pics . . . .

Christmas Weekend in Duluth
While in Duluth we saw Grandma Doris (a.k.a. gamma-d as Bergen says), Grandma Betty, Aunt Marilyn, Aunt Maren and Uncle Charlie. Lars worked at my Dad's office on Thursday and Friday as he hadn't planned on being in Duluth until after work on Friday, but the partners at Keystone were supportive and gave Lars the okay to drive his very stressed out wife up north early. Here are some photos from our weekend up in the cold north. . .

New Years Eve
We went to Rob and Carrie Nelsons who hosted a first annual new years eve party at their beautiful home in Maple Grove. . . we had a great time seeing friends that we don't get to see as often as we would like and it enabled us Ole girls to do our gift exchange together. We also got to meet Beret and Joel's little man Sam. . . who is just as cute as ever.

New Years Day
We have begun a fun tradition with Peg, Megan and Michael to have our Christmas celebration on New Years Eve. . . which had to be pushed back a day this year due to scheduling conflicts. We had a nice, leisurely afternoon hanging out and opening gifts. . . then finished with a great dinner. A great way to end the Christmas celebrations and begin the new year!!

So, those are the cliff notes. And no worries - there won't be a quiz. But, if you made it all the way to the end. . . in the words of Michael Scott. . . you get an A++!
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