Monday, July 30, 2012

Girls Can Camp Too

Anna, Sue, Elyse and me went camping at Lake Cushman in Hoodsport, WA about a month ago. OJ even came out for the day. Yes, girls can camp too! Even girls like ME! Now, we might have had Bill drive the trailer to our destination AND pick us up, but still! Funny the people surprised that I like to camp. Now, I like it a whole lot better now that we have an RV. I'm pretty much done with tent camping. And I like the RV even better, when it doesn't involve the woods - but I like real camping too. Our first trip just had to be in the woods. Bill was working on our driveway, so us girls decided to go!

Sue took the most precious picture of Elyse and me. The cute backstory is she was really into the kissing. Grabbing my neck (as you can see) and holding the kiss for a long time. We laughed and told her she was so "romantic". I love my girl and so thankful to Sue for capturing this precious mother/daughter moment. She even framed it for me as an early birthday gift. Love.

Here is my summary of the fun:

* OJ learned how to french braid (Carin, that is for YOU). 

* The best ice cream ever is Olympic Mountain Ice Cream - the Vanilla Salted Caramel and Kentucky Pie were TO DIE FOR. Elyse had her tongue out the entire time. So cute.

* No phone service for a whole weekend - and we survived!

* Sharon gave us an awesome backpack and it was perfect for our hike.

* The girls enjoyed how we brush Elyse's teeth. Yes, we sing the ABC song - hey, it works!

* We ate better camping than we do at home. Anna is a great cook and hooked us up!

* Our hike at Staircase is really one of my favorite places on earth. The moss just hangs everywhere - it is so beautiful. The water is a beautiful turquoise and the green - it is everywhere. Simply magical.

* Elyse possibly did watch many episodes of Caillou when she was stuck inside as it was raining. She would wake up asking for, "Cai!!"

* The girl did awesome sleeping in the RV.

* Anna didn't even mind the white noise (not everyone gets to hear a waterfall sleeping in their RV!)

* Us girls proudly got the awning up by ourselves! Yes!

* We survived a four hour power outage (haha).

* Good times with great women.

Here you go!

Lake Cushman Camping Trip from Courtney on Vimeo.

Sunday, July 22, 2012


My baby girl,

You definitely know what you want these days!

We will be driving down the road and you will shout, "Hand! Hand!" You want me to reach back to your car seat and hold your hand/touch your cheek. It isn't the most safe thing when I'm driving, but I've been known to oblige.

You are so polite. Even during a temper tantrum, if we hand you your milk you will say, "thank you" which sounds more like, "chay choo". You will belch and say, "Excuse me" or your version, "me me".

You still love your animals. We were at a restaurant last night and you were calling for Libby, "Biiiiiibbbbeeeee!" You love to feed Libby, yet scold her when you think she is doing something she shouldn't.

You love to be held and "Up Please" has transitioned to what used to sound like "apple" to a more mature "uppie".

You love lotion and beg for some for you... and your baby. If I use baby oil gel, you ask for a "bite" and yes, you'd eat it if I let you.

Lip gloss. You will run off with the wristlet from my purse / diaper bag and get out that lip gloss before I know it. If I'm getting ready, you will hold onto my legs and say, "pweeese" and motion to your lips so I will put some on you.

You are OBSESSED with iPods, phones, iPads, etc. We have an iTouch you call your "G" and we bring that out when we need a serious distraction for you.

You are still incredibly social. You say HI to everyone and even blow kisses.

You still love your sleep. You sleep ten hours and twelve when we don't have to wake you. Naps are once a day from two to three hours.

You love Dr. Suess' ABCs. We have been reading "Little Hoot" each night before bed. You love hearing about the little owl who likes to go to bed early (thanks Taryn!).

You insist on shoes coming off whenever inside asking that they be taken off (which sounds like "Owwww").

You are still a great eater. Your newest fave? Blue cheese dressing! You lick it off your fingers and even dig out the chunks of cheese.

You will pull my shirts off the rack when they are on their hangers on the drying rack and say, "Cute! Cute!" Little fashionista.

You brush your teeth standing on your stepstool while I fix your hair. When time for me to brush your teeth, you insist on being held and we sing the entire ABC song.

I wished I had a video of you last night at Nordstrom. Marcie and I laughed as our friend, Athena, had you trying on all the Tory Burch flip flops! You entertained many customers! (except for two very large tantrums - oye!"

Baby Girl, You make us smile and laugh every day!

We love you so very much!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Dance Fever

Cousins Emily and Clare were in town from IL in May (I told you I'm behind in these posts!!). Emily joined Elyse, Tanner and Maggie in a dance party on the back patio for some cousin dancin'! Good times!

Cousin Fun from Courtney on Vimeo.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

I'll Get it, Mom!

We laid about seven yards of beauty bark in our backyard recently. That Friday night, Bill had a huge pile of it on our side yard. We all pitched in to help spread it - you can imagine Elyse was a big help. By the end of the night, we were all a sticky from sunscreen and sweat and had beauty bark all over us. Showers were welcomed that night!
The next day, Elyse ended up running through it without her shoes. She had teeny, tiny slivers in the bottom of her feet. She sat with Bill as I methodically went through and picked out as many as I could with tweezers. We even tried the credit card trick, packing and duct tape. There were still tons of them there, but everything I read on-line said it would be OK. They would work their way out - just watch for infection. I don't know - I still worried.

I couldn't help it. Each night after her bath, I'd work on her feet some more. I realized my OCD in finding all the slivers were affecting Elyse. She never complained that they hurt, but she started obsessing about them too. Pointing to her feet - trying to look at the bottoms.

One night, I let her have the tweezers and cracked up as she tried getting them out herself. Oh, this girl makes me laugh! Forgive the poor cell phone photos. Here we go!

Maybe if I put my foot up on the ottoman, I can see better.

OK, maybe I'll try sitting down.

Let's try this angle.

I think I got it!

Good laughs.

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Sunday, July 15, 2012

RV Trip #2

I know, I know. I never even posted about RV Trip #1! That trip was just the girls - pictures coming I promise. I think I still have pictures from May I haven't posted. Oh, well.

Last weekend we took the trailer on our first family outing to Westport, WA. Libby even came along. You can think about Westport in a couple of ways. Around here we often think of it as a depressing, gray, stormy fishing town with not a whole lot to do. However, it is a pretty cool destination for a weekend getaway. First of all, the fishing lifestyle is pretty cool to see. We stayed at an RV park right downtown. We looked out from our bed right onto the marina. It was pretty great. 

I got off early on Friday and we left right away. We'd planned it pretty easy where we'd eat out for Friday dinner and do an early dinner Saturday. That way, we only needed food for breakfast and snacks.

Before we left, I rented and downloaded movies from iTunes on the iPad. Friday night, after Elyse went down, Bill and I cuddled up to watch a movie after she went to sleep. We went to bed pretty early (between 9:30 and 10). That night was a horrible rain, thunder and lightning storm. It hit us somewhere between 11 and 12. Wow, it was loud. I just kept thinking - please lightning, don't strike our trailer. Being down at the marina is a little noisy anyway, but the thunderstorm was pretty eventful. It made for a bit of a restless first night's sleep - for Bill and I anyway. Elyse was out like a light.

The next morning, we slept in a little bit (thanks to Caillou on the iPad entertaining Elyse, while we snoozed). We went into the neighboring town of Grayland for the Windrider's Kite Festival. It was pretty impressive. HUGE kites!

Elyse fell asleep on the way there, but she woke up quickly when we arrived and she saw what was in the sky.

You can park near the beach or right on the beach - if you have the right vehicle. We walked along - checking out all the amazing and colorful kites.

This picture makes me smile because I swear I have a very similar one from about 2005-2006 with Bill and Annie on the beach in Gold Beach, OR. It is possible he is even wearing the same jacket.

This kite behind us was super cool - like a big cyclone.

Elyse is starting to outgrow the Ergo in this position. I don't think it is supposed to choke my neck.

I had no clue she was making this face. Funny girl!


Libby was pulling like crazy. This was right before we stopped at the trunk to switch collars to help control her.

Elyse is so funny. She loves walking with both of us, but then she realizes she is not with the other and gets so excited! I love both of their expressions.

Happy girl.

Clue #1 we were nearing naptime = the spacing out look. I had about ten pictures of this exact face.

Yes, it is naptime. Time to go.

We drove home via Cranberry road and looked at the cranberry bogs. So cool.

Got back and putting a sleeping girl down. Pillow propped up against the window to help block the bright light.

Sat on our lawn chairs outside and watched some fishermen clean their catch.

Just like Deadliest Catch - foul language and all.

Our direct view from the RV.

We went to Bennett's Fish Shack that night - we highly recommend it! Not to mention House of Pizza where we went the night before. Thank you, TripAdvisor for good picks!

The restaurant where we stayed (not so great reviews) - and why we did not eat there!

Handsome husband and cool shot.


When Elyse woke up, we walked downtown to eat. Here is the view of our truck and RV from town.

And, a little closer.

It was pretty grey on Saturday. Bill and Elyse on the boardwalk.

We walked out onto some of the floats to check out the water.

Pelicans getting dinner.

Elyse hanging out. She had Wall-E in the background and was coloring and reading.

Elyse was sacked out on the way home.

Friday night, Bill and I watched another movie and called it a night. Saturday night was much quieter. Bill had trouble in the early morning as the fishing boats started up, but I slept through all of it.

Definitely a great trip and we WILL be back!! It was great having our own place with our own things. We had our own restroom and shower, but they had facilities too if we needed it. I loved having Libby with us, not to mention knowing where we stay will be clean. We have had such bad luck with hotels the last few years. To bring our own "home away from home" and save money on hotels, is a win-win for me! We definitely allow more screen time for Elyse while in the RV, but she seems to transition decently once we get home. At least no more than usual does she beg for "Cai! Cai" for "Caillou" or ask for her "G" - what she calls the I-Touch.

I do love our little trailer! It was a fantastic deal and perfect for our little family. More fun times ahead for sure! On to planning the next trip. We are so busy though in the near future, I think it will be AUGUST!

PS: For my HCA friends - we ran into Rosie B at the donut shop Sunday morning! Can you believe it?

PSS: Little Richard's House of Donuts has a apple fritter that rivals Lattin's in my book - WOW!
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Saturday, July 7, 2012

Because I Just Love Her

There is not a day that goes by that this little girl doesn't brighten our day and warm our hearts. She is so sweet, funny, smart and busy.

I need to take some time to do a little more sharing about her, but for now - I give you this. Because I just love her.
Elyse and my rollers. July 7, 2012.

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