Monday, December 31, 2018

Happy Birthday, Madison!

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(Yep, I made that sign on the dry erase board.  I didn’t forget.  I remembered. Aren’t you proud of me?)

Today, you turned 9. You are one finger away from two handfuls and double digits.  Nine seems so grown up.  And you are growing up. 

You still like some things that remind me you are a little girl: silly games with Ellie, reading picture books with me, coloring (but more advanced pictures now), giggling at little things. 

I love those things. 

But you are doing things that are also showing me who you are becoming: lengthier chapter books, building lego sets all by yourself, an interest in your clothes/hair/style, journaling.

I love those things, too.

While I say sometimes that you should stop growing, I don’t really mean it.  I love seeing you change, develop new interests, try new things, experiment with who you are.  It is neat to watch this progression. 

I love that you enjoy going to church, especially Sunday school.  (You have had the privilege of Grandma teaching you for a few quarters.)  You also look forward to Kingdom Choir practice and performances.  You even had a solo!!!! in the Messiah for Young Voices.  Wow!  What courage to sing in front of everyone!  And you have started going to Jr. Missionaries.  Another way to grow with your friends in your love for Jesus. 

Thanks for the way you play with your sister, care for your friends, and love us as your parents.  You are an amazing 9 year old!

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Aerial Yoga

This year, Jennifer treated the girls to an aerial yoga session at Flex Yoga in Wooster.  I was going to join, but with a dislocated pinky, it was kinda hard to be all in. 

We had never done this before, so there was some hesitancy before going.  But I reassured them that all they needed to do was sit in the silks and only do what they were comfortable with. 

But the minute the silks came down, they were all in.

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It was Erin (and Marianne), Jennifer, Ellie, Madison, and Maggie in the silks. With Gloria and I watching.

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The instructor was fantastic – relatable, encouraging, and just the right amount of push.  Erin did a great job.  And Gloria even got in the action for a bit.

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The girls tried all kinds of things – standing up, swinging, flipping completely over, twirling like a ballerina, and more.  It was really neat to watch them try all the things.

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At the end, they wanted more.  If only everything fun wasn’t 30 minutes away from us, right?  But, I think I would like to do a session with my Ediger side sometime.  I think there would be others who would enjoy it. 

It was a great gift, Jennifer!  Thanks for helping them try new things.

Welcome Home, Pepper!

So, we gave in.  I thought we would hold out a little longer.  But each trip to the shelter led to more begging for a pet.  They started asking for guinea pigs and hamsters.  Then, we saw this little guy on facebook looking for a home – born October 8.

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We talked a long time as we headed to Columbus, just Jeremy and I.  We discussed pros and cons.  We called the family to ask questions.  We didn’t know what we should do. 

I headed there on Wednesday night to check out his temperament.  I took back-up.  Second opinions.  My mom and Steph. 

He was adorable.  He didn’t bark.  He didn’t jump.  He stole our hearts.  There was not a unanimous decision, but it did prompt more thought. 

We took the girls to visit him on Thursday.  We decided that if neither of them (especially Ellie) freaked out, then maybe he would be our new addition to the family. 

The girls did a great job.  They both held him.  They walked up to him unworried.  It went so well. 

We said yes.  Ellie could talk of nothing but the dog for days.

We went pet supply shopping on Sunday, and brought him home on Christmas Eve. 

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He started out pretty mellow.  He hadn’t been housetrained at all, so we are starting from scratch.  It is a learning experience.  I feel like I just had my first kid again and am failing on an hourly basis.  But there are moments when it is going well, too, and I am glad we did this thing. 

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Madison is pretty confident around him.  Picking him up like he is her personal baby.  She is working on getting him to sit to get a toy. 

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Ellie is a little more tentative.  He has started jumping as he has settled in.  She is doing better though, and I think will adapt okay.  Really, she has no choice. 

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He has some toys he loves – a fox and a bear for the win right now.  He goes (fairly) willingly into his crate.  He sleeps all night long (MAJOR win with this one!!).  And he is still super cute. 

Sunday, December 30, 2018

Yoh #1, Yoh #2, Bricker, and Tschiegg Gatherings

Sometimes this takes a couple posts.  This year, I am just putting them all in one. 

YOH CHRISTMAS #1

Christmas morning, we woke up and celebrated as just our family.  I appreciate that we can do this.  It is unrushed, but goes so quickly.  There are only four of us and only so many presents.

We started with cinnamon rolls and eggs for breakfast.  Stayed in our PJs for the gift opening… probably why there are so few pictures of me at this thing!  The girls had fun opening gifts.  They are fun to watch because they get excited over all kinds of things – even small ones.  For Madison, the small thing was yogurt drops! 

Madison received some clothes, winter accessories, the baby bunny Calico Critter, a plush white bunny (the only thing she asked Santa for), and some books.

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Ellie received a Calico Critter nursery school and panda family, winter accessories, books, and clothes. 

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I surprised Jeremy with some clothes – that he actually likes!  He surprised me with a t-shirt from Ululani’s Shave Ice stand in Maui!  I love it!

They played together while the new puppy slept in his crate.  We don’t yet trust him to not eat small toys!

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YOH CHRISTMAS #2

Christmas evening we headed to Gloria’s to greet Jen and Arturo who had just gotten in and to celebrate Christmas.  Niki and Jason’s family wasn’t able to come this year because they just welcomed Zadie at the beginning of November.  We facetimed with them, but it definitely wasn’t the same without the extra little bodies running around.  We had a good meal of turkey and mashed potatoes before opening gifts.  The girls were pretty excited for gifts again.  They both received an American Girl trunk/carrier with classic clothes and old school American Girl dolls – the real deal!  They were very excited.  (Jennifer had given permission to Gloria to pass along her pristine condition dolls.  They will probably not stay in such great shape for that many years.  We’ll see.)  They also got personalized stationary and envelopes made by Jason, and books from Jen and Arturo’s travels in Scandinavia.

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BRICKER CHRISTMAS

The day after Christmas, we headed to Marianne’s house for the Bricker gathering.  This is always a loud and fun time.  I even got some time to play an actual adult card game this year.  (Usually, I am entertaining my own kids or helping them with something.)

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Our gift exchange was a little unusual – kinda a white elephant type thing.  It ended up okay, but a little confusing how to actually play the game with dice.  (Pinterest doesn’t always work like you expect.)  We brought Pepper with us, and he provided entertainment for everyone.  He actually did really well, and didn’t whine too much when left alone. 

TSCHIEGG GATHERING

This isn’t a Christmas party, but it is a fun holiday gathering that Gloria started hosting three years ago.  There is a potluck supper then a few rounds of Aunt Jane’s Bingo.  Aunt Jane’s Bingo consists of each player having 5 playing cards face up in front of them.  A caller calls cards from a full deck.  As you hear your card being called, you turn over a card.  When all five cards are flipped, you call BINGO.  You play this same round until all cards are called and all players have won.  When you win, you pick an inexpensive gift from the table.  The second round is played the same, but you can steal a gift from others if you want.  It is fun.  The girls love it because they are guaranteed to win.

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Ediger Christmas

It usually starts the night before with supper.  And it did again this year.  Just pizza and veggies, but it was extra time to hang out. 

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Saturday morning, we gathered around 9 for coffee cakes and delicious egg casserole.  (Still need that recipe, Steph!) 

Then, we took family pictures:

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This year, it was the youngest girls turn to read the Christmas story.  They were so excited to be able to do this.  Grandpa practiced with them, and gave them each a section. 

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Afterwards, it is family sharing time.  We did this at both my extended family gatherings growing up.  There wasn’t much sharing.  Ellie had written a story about what happens at the Ediger Christmas, so she read that. 

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Then, Jeremy played “You are my Sunshine” on the harmonica while we sang (unrehearsed!).  That was due to a contract deal negotiated after they heard him sing on the caroling video. 

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Finally, it was present time.  I like that each person sits and watches while one person opens presents.  It makes it last longer… and requires more patience… but it makes each person feel important.  (I tried to get pictures of everyone, but I am just posting my own kids pictures.)  Madison received Calico Critters and their cozy cottage and a drawing book that she played with all day. 

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Ellie received a body pillow and big Lego set and American Girl doll crutches. 

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We had lunch (ham ball, cheesy potatoes, salad, etc).  Had dessert.  Just hung out.

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Then, headed to the gym to burn some energy off.  We started with volleyball and scooters and a few kickballs and basketballs.  The volleyball game was a good way to ease in to the day with all ages playing.  For the final game, we did 10 years and older only.  It got a little more heated with that.  I also realized I am getting old; my right shoulder hurts when I try to overhand serve the ball… underhand serves for the win, I guess.  We then transitioned to basketball.  I play just to play.  I am not really good, but it is fun to compete in a different way.  Here were the teams… (Perhaps you can guess which team is a little more serious about the game…)

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We were about 10 points in (2 of which I had scored for my team by some miracle!), when Luke sent a rocket pass down court to Steph.  I threw my hand out to deflect the pass.  I deflected it.  I also managed to get my pinky on my left hand to point in a different directions.  I screamed for everyone to look at my hand.  Then started crying/screaming hysterically.  Luke removed my hand from my vision.  Then, asked if I wanted him to try to put it back in place.  I said, just do something.  And screamed in anticipation of the pain.  (Graphic picture coming…)

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Jeremy loaded me up and drove me to the Aultman Orrville ER.  Thankfully, it was very slow when we got there, so we were in and out in about an hour.  I took 2 sets of X-rays.  It was dislocated at my middle joint.  They numbed my finger (which hurt about as bad as the dislocation) before putting it back in place.  Even though it was in place, it still wasn’t quite right.  It would pop out each time I straightened it.  Apparently, I tore the ligament (called the Volar Plate), and my “pulley system” was broken.  They splinted it, and referred me to a hand specialist.  I returned home to mom’s in time for supper. 

It was a good day, even with the trip to the ER.