December 29, 2005

Xmas Pics

By popular demand here are the Christmas pics of the "world's cutest kids*"

*According to their parents, grandparents and close friends who were sufficiently bribed.

Riding her new tricycle Xmas morning.

Close up of the tricycle. Note the "inside" helmet she has to wear

Opening her present from Santa (thanks Manny!)

Look it's a Jack-in-the-box just what she wanted.

Smiling with Blue and Magenta - 2 new stuffed animals from Mom and Dad.

"I've almost got it. But get it in my mouth before Mom sees."

Kulia Christmas morning

"Think I can eat this present?"

You can never have too many Xmas baby shots #1

You can never have too many Xmas baby shots #2

You can never have too many Xmas baby shots #3

Christmas Dinner Clothes Pictures #1

Christmas Dinner Clothes Pictures #2

Merry Christmas Girls

"Hey is that a camera?

Are they cute or what?

Posted by Kevin at 09:41 PM | Comments (0)

December 16, 2005

Disney Land

Kevin made a very astute observation the other night. He noted that living with Leina was like living with the seven dwarfs only you never know which dwarf will greet you from the crib each morning.

Of course, we're overjoyed when we get Happy but more often than not we are faced with Grumpy or, now that cold season is upon us, Sneezy. Lately, I've seen quite a bit of Doc as Leina's new favorite past time is to ask "why" over and over and over again. Sleepy and Grumpy sometime appear at the same time and Bashful takes over when she's approached by stranges. Personally, I like Dopey and the silly songs and antics. Each day, Leina morphs through these characters at an alarming rate. I'm begining to think that the original tale was Snow White and Her Two Year Old but old Walt decided seven dwarfs would be more fun.

I guess if Leina is the Dwarves that that leaves me with either Snow White or the Evil Queen. And, I suppose, in Leina's eyes I'm both. I can play and snuggle with her or demand that she go to bed or turn off the TV.

Yes, we're just a magical kingdom here in McLaughlin land. Now, if only there really was a magic apple that would send her soundless into sleep during nap time!

Posted by Chrissie at 08:57 PM | Comments (1)

December 13, 2005

Full of Surprises

My girls continue to astound me.

For weeks, Kulia has been pushing up on all fours and rocking. Well, yesterday she fit all the pieces together before our unbelieving eyes. She popped up, pushed with her feet and reached with her hands and achieved crawl. I don't know whether to be amazed or scared. Probably both. She's still wobbly and can't go more then a foot or two but all the requirements are there. She's just waiting to kick in the afterburners and take off.

And Leina? Well, she is the ultimate talker still. I had the girls up at the park yesterday and I was chatting up another mom who's son was a month older than Leina. He was way beyond her physically - jumping off the play structure, running over the bridge and climbing up the slide. Leina was carefully picking her way up the jungle gym gabbing the whole time and the other mom commented on her incredible speech. Her son would say, "mommy, up slide!" Leina's version was "mommy I want to go up the slide and then you can hold my hand on the other side and catch me at the bottom so I can try the swings and you can push me fast but not too fast 'cause I might fall and have a booboo....." We pretty much tuned her out and chatted until Leina ran up to me and tugged my hand.

"Mommy," she began, "I want to go on the suspension bridge."

There was a moment of stunned silence and then the other mom turned to me and exclaimed, "what did she just say!"

I wasn't sure I had heard correctly myself so I bent down and said, "what did you say, honey?"

"I want to go on the suspension bridge," Leina replied pointing to the bridge.

"Wow, that's amazing. Where did she learn that?" asked the mom.

"Well, she watches lots of Bob the Builder," I began, "and her dad's an engineer."

"oh, well, that explains it!" said the mom.

Then that evening, Leina upted the ante even further. I was trying to settle her with her evening video and held up her two options.

"I want to watch ba-woo mommy," Leina said.

"You want to watch the blue one?" I asked, holding the blue video toward her.

"No, mommy, I want ba-woo!" Leina demanded.

"Oh, you want to watch Blue's Clues!" I said and began rummaging through our DVD collection.

"No, no mommy. Not ba-woo, BA-WOO!" Leina demanded. She was beginning to get frustrated by my lack of understanding.

"I'm sorry honey, I don't understand what you want."

Leina sat and looked at me a moment and then said...

"Mommy, what is Mogli's friend's name?"

"Mogli's friend? His name is Baloo." I answered.

"Yes mommy," Leina nodded sagely, "I want to watch Ba-woo."

Completely flabergasted, I quietly slipped the Jungle Book sing-a-long into the player and stared at my daughter in awe. These kids. They are so frightening sometimes. One never knows what they will do next.

Posted by Chrissie at 03:11 PM | Comments (0)

December 07, 2005

Xmas Cutie

As we started decorating tonight Kulia found our Xmas hats:

Isn't she a cutie!

Posted by Kevin at 09:42 PM | Comments (2)

Back in Stride

Doing much better today.

Kevin took the day off - thankfully - and we bundled up the girls and headed to Sleighbells to cut down our Christmas Tree. It was nice and empty since it was a weekday and we wandered the fields a happy little family. Kevin's outside stringing the last of the lights and I'm impatiently waiting for Leina to wake from her nap so we can start decorating the tree.

It hit me last night why I'm so down. This is the first Christmas that Leina understands. She's so excited for Santa and his reindeer to visit. She keeps asking where her stockings are and why we don't have a tree. At night we walk around ohhhhing and ahhhing at the crazy neighborhood lights. I so want to kick our family traditions into gear.

I want to make Kulia her own felt stocking. I want Kevin to lift Leina up to place our angel at the top of the tree. I want to show Leina all the cool ornaments that have been handed down to us for our parents and grandparents. I want to see her eyes glow when she sees all the twinkly lights on our tree. I want to lie under the branches with her and gaze up at all ornaments just like I used to with my sister.

See, all we needed was one day to catch our breath and rub our sore feet. Now, we're back Jack!

S come on kid, wake up already! There's a tree that needs trimming!

Posted by Chrissie at 04:12 PM | Comments (0)

December 06, 2005

Marathon Running

Haven't had much time to blog. Kevin and I are in triage mode right now. He's slammed at work and is working 12 hour days and weekends. I'm juggling both girls single handedly which is ok except Kulia is having a horrible time with her teeth. Too add fuel to the fire, she had her six month check up and received FIVE shots. Unbelievable. I thought she was grumpy before. Ha! She turned into a screaming ball of adorable chub tonight. Her screaming freaked Leina out and she begain yelling "mommy, what's wrong with sister? Mommy, mommy, hold me! I'm scared!" At one point I had both of them 9in my arms crying and clinging to me. I must say that as a mom, I have developed incredable upper body strength!

Kevin stumbled home at 7pm to help get the kids to bed and then dragged himself back into work. He didn't even eat dinner or shave today so he looks as ragged as he feels. I broke down in tears last night right in the middle of washing a huge pile of dishes just from feeling so overwhelmed. Yup, it's definately Christmas time! Time to run around like crazy trying to cram everything into on measly month. Sigh.

I'm doing much better today. I had a beer with dinner and I must say, I'm feeling rather....floaty. It's been 15 months since I've had a beer so I'm afraid the alcohol has gone, voosh, right to my head. Rather pleasent really.

The girls are great. Leina is loving her advent calendar. Every morning we check off another day and she gets a little present. Today, she found cocktail umbrellas in her Advent box. You know, those little paper umbrellas they put in tropical drinks? She adored opening, closing and twirling them. She tucked them behind her ear or held them over Kulia's head to keep the pretend rain off. They were quite a hit.

Kulia? Well, she is scaring the pants off me. She's clocking in at a whopping 18lb 10oz right now. Even more frightening, she's getting up on all fours and rocking back and forth with the most manical gleem in her eye. And you know what that means.


Yup, I predict she'll be tearing around the house by Christmas time and it keeps me up nights just thinking about it. I remember what a handful Leina was when she started crawling and Leina was 1 year old. She understood "no" and "don't touch." Kulia, at a mere six months old, is not even close to understanding that. I have horribly vivid dreams of me chasing after her as she speeds around the house stuffing everything that isn't nailed down into her mouth.

Gonna need a lot mroe beer.

So excuse the lack of posts but Kevin and I are running a marathon right now and until we get out from under this horribly busy time, it's going to be a long slog. It would help if they stopped moving the finish line on us but hey, such is life.

Posted by Chrissie at 09:02 PM | Comments (0)

December 03, 2005


Kulia is sitting on the ground stuffing everything within reach into her mouth.


Artie wanders up and begins to voraciously lick her face as if it is covered in peanut butter.


Kevin witnesses this licking and says, "not the face, Artie! Not the face!"

Artie continues to lick.

Kevin, exasperated, blurts out "what part of 'not the face' do you not understand dog?"

I begin laughling. "Um, probably, 'not', 'the', and 'face'?"

Kevin sends me stink eye and pulls the dog away from our youngest who seems a bit sad to see his big slobbery tongue leave.

Yes, another typical day at the McLaughlin home.

Posted by Chrissie at 03:04 PM | Comments (0)