The Grunenfelders Visit!!

Story told by: Lainey

My friend, Emma, brought her Mommy and brother, Cole, to visit this week! They used to live here, and had to move away in 2013. We’re so happy to have them staying with us for a week!

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We had lots of fun with bath time. We could barely move, but we didn’t care. The more the merrier!

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We couldn’t wait to share books with each other. Emma is a smart preschooler, so she had lots to say.

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Daddy walked Emma and I to the park one evening while Mommy was making dinner. I may be just a tad bigger than my friend.

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After church we went to Cougar Country. We entertained ourselves with silly faces while Daddy waited for the food.

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She’s so weird.

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Emma’s beautiful Mommy, Chelsea.

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We got to have a “Frozen” movie night in our PJs.  This may have been the highlight of our week!

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I’m sure happy Emma is here.

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Daddy made some great popcorn!!

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On another day, we went to see the bears at the WSU research facility.

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The bears were sleeping, so we tried to help out by yelling. The bear opened his eyes, gave us a quick glance, and went back to sleep. We obviously weren’t persuasive enough.

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This bear eventually got into the bathtub and played with toys. He takes baths just like me?! How cool!

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We had a picnic at the park.

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Cole gobbled up his strawberries (and most of mine).

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We weren’t feeding Henry enough, so he helped himself to the chips.

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We brought bread to feed the ducks, so after lunch, we got to work.

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There were so many ducks, but I had no fear. At one point, I was dancing in the middle of a crowd of ducks.

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Henry and Cole just hung out and watched the action.

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Henry is so happy to have another boy in the house this week!

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After feeding the ducks, we were going to walk to the park, but about two seconds into our walk, I fell (because I just couldn’t resist running). Mommy said that I was a very brave girl. I needed three band-aids on my knee, one on my wrist, and I had two more owies on my other knee and wrist. Mommy asked me if I wanted to go home, but I insisted on heading to the playground.

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I could barely walk, though, so Chelsea gave me royal treatment.

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The nighttime routine was sure crazy around our house!

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Henry started eating peas this week, which was very entertaining for all of us. His look says, “Mommy, I’m going to hurt you if you give me any more of this stuff.”

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We all piled into the wagon and walked down to the park.

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Despite all of the toys at the playground, we only wanted to play with the rocks (and Cole just wanted to eat them).

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Emma and I got in lots of coloring this week.

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Emma and I had a picnic with fruit snacks to celebrate me going pee pee in the potty. I’ve loved having my friend here this week, and I can’t wait until they come to visit again!!

Awesome August Activities

Story told by: Lainey

We’ve had a great month of August! I wanted to show a bunch of our fun activities and events.

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Grandma and Grandpa sent a “just for fun” package. I had some delicious gummy bears in the package. I was a happy girl.

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Thanks Grandma and Grandpa!

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I tried to ride my car up the stairs. It didn’t go well.

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We met our friends, Claire and Nora, at Bonkerz. We sure love that place!

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On another visit to Bonkerz, Perry and Henry had a sweet moment together.

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Mommy and I spent some time with Joseph while his mommy worked in her classroom. We had lots of fun together in the bath tub.

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Ivy is going to be a big sister in September, so she came to hang out with us while her mommy got some things done around the house.

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I sure love my time with Ivy!

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My baby is wrapped up in burp cloths and blankets. (My baby is a giraffe rattle. Obviously.)

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Henry is sitting up on his own now (with just a few occasional head bonks).

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I’m a very helpful shopper.

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Henry always appreciates it when I play with him.

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Mommy says this kid is way too easy going.

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Ivy and I spent another morning together watching, “Frozen.” She isn’t a master at sucking her thumb (like me), but she gave it a good try.

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Then I put on my princess costume and doctor gear, and got to work!

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Ivy looks healthy!

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The nights are cooling off now, which means we can take some great family walks.

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I’ve been spending some great time daydreaming at the playground.

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Henry has been gobbling down rice cereal, sweet potatoes, and applesauce.

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One of our favorite annual events in August is the National Lentil Festival. Unfortunately, it rained….a lot. We first took cover under a tree. Right after this picture was taken, though, Henry had a massive blow out, so we had to make a run for it.

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We made it to dinner and were soaked. Absolutely dripping-wet soaked. (Mommy’s shirt was supposed to be a light gray and my hair was very wet.) Fortunately Mommy had an extra outfit for Henry and a sweatshirt for me to replace my shirt. What a night!

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The next morning we went to the Lentil Festival parade with Uncle Jaron and Tiffany.

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Henry absolutely LOVED the group playing the bagpipes.

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He was singing along with them.

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“Did you see that, Daddy?!?!”

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And here comes the WSU marching band! I was especially interested in the “hackophones” (saxophones).

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Here come the cheerleaders!

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And football!! It’s almost time for some Cougar football. We are pretty excited around our house!

My 6-Month Appointment

Story told by: Henry

I had my 6-month checkup today. I have a little exczema on my torso, but other than that, I’m doing great!

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We spent some time hanging out together while we waited for Dr. Mike. He was stuck at the hospital doing rounds, so we had some time to play.

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While Mommy and I played, Lainey read her magazine. She picked out her outfit today (which she insists on doing most days).

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Lainey pulled out the toys, which was really sweet. It stopped being quite so sweet when she insisted on playing with all of them at once.

Once Dr. Mike came, he checked me out and gave me the all clear. Here are my stats:

Height: 27 1/2 inches (75th percentile) (Lainey was 27 inches at this age.)

Weight: 20.6 pounds (90th percentile) (Lainey was 18 pounds, 6 ounces at this age.)

Head Circumference: 18 inches (98th percentile) (Lainey’s head measured at 18 inches as well at this age.)

I’ll see you again, Dr. Mike, at my 9-month appointment!

Robinson Family Camping Trip, 2014

Story told by: Lainey

We met the extended Robinson family to go camping in the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest in the Northern Cascade Range of Washington. We got there on Friday afternoon and left before lunch on Sunday.

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Due to some traveling delays caused by a delightful toddler (me) and a sweet, little baby (Henry), we were one of the last families to arrive. That meant that we got some assistance with setting up the tent!

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While Na Na and Daddy set up the tent, Henry and I hung out with Ba Ba (while also yelling out some occasional advice to Daddy and Na Na).

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Henry’s first camping experience seems to be off to a good start.

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Finishing up the tent.

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While everyone finished with getting the camp ready, I got to work with some coloring.

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The tent is finished. It’s our first time camping with this big tent. It has SO much more room than our tent from the past few years!

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Time to get started on dinner.

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Henry is just happy to be out of the car. What should have been a five-hour trip became almost an eight-hour trip. Those darn babies just don’t know how to be patient. (I, of course, was a perfect angel for the entire trip.)

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After taking a walk with Na Na, we got out the sidewalk chalk. This campground just needed some color!

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Molly came to join in on the fun.

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Henry went down for a nap, so Mommy, Daddy, and I walked down to explore the river.

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We got right to work on filling up the river with rocks.

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This is a picture of us early on Saturday morning. Henry and I weren’t too interested in sleeping the night before. After many attempts on our part, we finally ended up in Mommy and Daddy’s bed around 3 a.m. This picture was taken around 5:30 a.m., which is when Mommy and Daddy gave up on sleep and decided that we could leave the tent to greet the day.

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We got our clothes on and snuggled for a few more minutes while Mommy and Daddy got dressed.

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I ate a few bites of breakfast with Ba Ba, but I wasn’t very interested. There was too much fun to be had!

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I convinced Na Na to take a walk with me around the campground while Ba Ba and Daddy introduced Henry to the world of ham radio.

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Henry happily hung out with the adults, but I couldn’t be convinced to stop moving. Right after this picture, Mommy walked with me while I rode my bike.

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Then we went to join the rest of the family down at the river.

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The water was extremely cold, but I had lots of fun dipping my toes in and playing with my bucket.

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After playing at the river for awhile, we went back to check on everyone and found Ba Ba sound asleep. He can sleep anywhere at anytime. Impressive.

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On Saturday afternoon we had a wedding shower for Uncle Jaron and Tiffany (they’re getting married in October).

DSC03068While the wedding shower was going on, Annika was amazing and hung out with me (and the other kids). We had lots of fun together.

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After a fun game, we had s’mores for the wedding shower snack. There was a burn ban in effect, so we used marshmallow creme. It was a fairly decent substitute for toasted marshmallows.

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Na Na brought suckers for all of the kids, so I happily took a break to enjoy my treat.

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Time for presents.

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We made sure to capture a picture of the entire gang (minus Mommy who was taking the picture).

DSC03093We got a picture of Daddy and Uncle Jaron with their cousins.

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And finally some pictures of the second generation of cousins with Great Grandma Jackie.

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There will be two more kids joining this picture next summer. The more the merrier!

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Molly and I are just about the same age, so I especially had fun playing with her this weekend.

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Ba Ba and I found some “hair” for him while out on one of our walks.

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This is what the rock looked like by Sunday morning. They always say to leave the park better than you found it, so I did my best.

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This was the final picture of the trip before we got in the car to drive home. This sums up the fun, messy, dirty, exciting weekend that we had. I was one of the happiest girls this weekend. I can’t wait for more camping next summer!

A Weekend in Coeur d’Alene

Story told by: Lainey

Sam, Darcee, and Oliver moved to Montana a few months ago. We have really missed them, so we jumped at the chance to meet them in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho this weekend. (It’s somewhat of a halfway point for us.)

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We got on the road early on Saturday morning.

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Mommy and Daddy had their coffee.

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And I had my stuffed animals. We were ready to go.

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We got there first, so we spent some time running around the park. As usual, I helped to entertain my brother.

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The Coeur d’Alene Street Fair was happening this weekend, so as soon as the Stricklers arrived, we grabbed some delicious food!

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Ollie got a nice ride on his daddy’s shoulders.

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Ollie really enjoyed the fries. He’s a man after my own heart.

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After lunch, we went to spend some time on the awesome playground.

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Then we checked out the kids part of the fair. I was thrilled about going in this castle!

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They helped me make this flower in the castle. Isn’t it beautiful?!

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Then I met one of the princesses. I was really excited until I saw that she had a strange animal in her hand.

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We also walked through the vendors for awhile. It was 104 degrees, though, so we only lasted for a few hours.

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We went back to the hotel so everyone could take naps. Ollie and I decided that we weren’t too interested in naps, so Mommy and Darcee took us to the pool (while Henry and Daddy napped).

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We spent an hour swimming, but the fun ended when someone pooped in the pool (it definitely wasn’t us).

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We quickly showered and headed to dinner. Red Robin!!!

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I am so happy that we’re spending the weekend with Ollie. I really miss him!

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After dinner, everyone went to bed while Mommy and Darcee went out for a fun girls’ night. They could have sat there and talked all night, but the yogurt shop needed to close. Darn.

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When Mommy arrived back at the hotel, we were all asleep. I woke up at 2:30 a.m., and decided that I was ready to be up. I just didn’t want to waste time sleeping. I stayed up until 4:30 a.m. (I NEVER do this. It was just excitement from the trip.) Henry woke up at 5:30 a.m. This picture captures our morning…me watching as much TV as I wanted, while Henry took his first nap of the day and Mommy and Daddy downed cups of coffee.

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After sufficient coffee had been consumed, we checked out of the hotel and headed down to Lake Coeur d’Alene.

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It was another day in the triple digits, so the lake felt great!

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While we played in the water, Henry played with his toys.

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After awhile, though, he was just begging to go in the water, so Mommy took him in.

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Swimming makes me hungry!

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I tried out my swim ring for the first time, and I loved it. I didn’t even need Daddy holding on to me. I just kicked all over the lake.

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The heat wore Henry out, so he easily fell asleep!

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We all ate lunch on the beach, and then we played for another hour.

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Mommy taught me how to make sand castles. That was really fun!

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I kept poking holes in the sand castle and identifying each hole as a different princess. I wasn’t exactly thrilled when the water destroyed my sand castle, but Mommy and I built many more.

We had such an incredible weekend! I miss seeing Ollie, but we have plans to see them again at the end of October. I’m counting the days!