Thursday, July 31, 2008

The month's weekends in review

All is well in the Tidd house. Keeping busy with the busyness of life, that's for sure. Since our Beaver Island vacation, we were able to spend the following weekend with Kelsey and Samantha (our cousins). They were able to enjoy some life in slow motion for the weekend. The pampered themselves, played with Anna and I helped Kelsey get started on her new business venture with a logo, business card and start of a website. It was a lot of fun and we enjoyed their company!

The last weekend in July we did a family photo shoot around Grand Haven with our friend, Jenn. It was a lot of fun, Anna cooperated once again with us dragging her around and we got a lot of really nice shots! (I'll post a link for those when I post those).

The following Saturday (last weekend to this past weekend), we spent our week vacation in Silver Lake. My parents rented a cottage (my great great aunt and uncles old place) on the lake for all of us to enjoy. Since this is a very familiar place, I don't have a great adventure timeline to share as I did with Beaver Island. Don't get me wrong, we, well maybe Gary, had some adventures throughout the week and we had a lot of fun! We ate a lot of junk, read books and magazines, tried to plan gardens, went swimming and to the dunes, built campfires and ate lots of smores, went into town for Silver Lake garb (oh the steals at 40% off at the RV park!), went to Pentwater and to Little Sable Point and made sure Anna didn't get to everything that she shouldn't. :) It was nice to sleep in a smidge (if Anna let us), see the beautiful view of the dunes every morning, enjoy the sunshine, catch up on some reading and play some vicious Euchure. :) I have a bunch of pictures, so I'll post a few but add the links to my Facebook albums for your viewing pleasure.











http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=51326&l=01d89&id=501622976

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=51328&l=a64ce&id=501622976

We got back home on Saturday afternoon to get back into the swing of things again. It's always wonderful to have a vacation, but it's always nice to come back home again. Libby stayed the weekend with us to check out GVSU's masters program on Monday and to visit with friends. It was nice to have her around for the weekend.
Right now, we're doing work and email catch up and getting ready for the weekend. I have a busy one as Saturday is my birthday, a baby shower for a friend in Chicago and the big Boss picture for Grandma and Grandpa's 50th wedding anniversary. So lots to do of course!


In regards to prayer, please pray for Gary's Grandpa Hall as we wait for Wednesday to see what the diagnosis is of what kind of cancer he has and what the next steps to take are. Also pray for Grandma Madany (Martha's mom) as she didn't receive good news at the doctor yesterday in regards to her cancer. It's spreading and treatment is limited. Be with both of our families as tough decisions are needed to be made shortly and that there will be peace with their decision. God is the Great Physician for our bodies and for our minds, pray that His will will be done.


I'll post updates of us in another post. This poor 2nd child doesn't have near the updates as Anna's pregnancy did. :( Maybe that's a good thing as things are a bit boring on that front anyway. :) There will still be lots of pictures.


Love to you all,


Gary, Christie and the girl who gets into everything now

Friday, July 18, 2008

Beaver Island Adventure!

Friday, July 11

3am: Alarm goes off. Groan but realize we're going on a mini-vacation, so it's ok.

3:45am: Out the door, all packed with Anna awake, not sleeping like I want to, meeting mom, dad and Sheila at the Speedway.

4:15am: Arrive at Speedway, get Krispy Kremes and chocolate milk jugs for Gary and I. Gary gets Micky D's.

4:30am: On the road, headed to Charlevoix!
Between 5:30 and 6:30am: We're listening to our book, I start nodding off, so we turn it off b/c I keep missing things. Anna falls asleep shortly after we leave the gas station, by the way.

7:15am: After a beautiful drive through East Jordan, near Charlevoix Lake, we arrive at the Beaver Island Boat Company to await our ferry.
7:30 - 8:15am: Change Anna, feed her her bottle, sit around waiting for Gary and dad to park the cars and to get on the boat.

8:30am: We take off into Lake Michigan on our 2 hour ferry ride to Beaver Island. It was an overcast day, a little wind but a nice day nonetheless. Anna did fine on the boat ride. She didn't quite find her sea legs, so she looked like a drunken sailor trying to stand up on things. She ate and played, and took about an hour nap before we arrived at the harbor. Gary enjoyed being outside taking in the view, I enjoyed the company, a cat nap and Martha Stewart.


10:45am: Arrived at the harbor on Beaver Island. From a distance it's what I expected - a small area with some shops and restaurants and lots of cottages/homes. It was beautiful.



11:00am: Unload our stuff and walk to our first nights lodging. Yes, we walked with a large suitcase, overnight bag, duffle bag, pack-n-play, booster seat, Anna, her car seat and base along with the rest of the families belongings. It was less than a mile, but that was not fun.
11:30am: Arrive at the house Gary's friends own and graciously let us stay. This was a place rich in cherished memories, lots of laughs, history and family. Mismatched furniture, rooms closed off with curtains rather than doors, a wood burning stove for heat and no screens for the summer. A vintage stove and an old way out of tune piano complete the picture (oh yeah, creepy crawlies that didn't sit well with my mother in law and sister in law). The water ran cool, even on hot. We figured out sleeping arrangements and figured out our day.


12:00pm: Head over to Dalwhinnie's for some lunch. A small eat in breakfast, lunch and dinner restaurant with a bakery counter filled with sugary baked goods.

1:00pm: Stopped by the grocery store for some essentials and headed back to the house.

1:15-2pm: Walked the property, took my "Christie pictures" as some of my family call it, full of wildflowers, unidentified metal objects and mossy rocks and trees. Got the Trooper ready for the grand tour of the island.



2:00pm: Loaded in the trooper to begin the adventure of the day. We headed over to the Whiskey Point Lighthouse for some photo opps of the beautiful lighthouse and watery vegetation. Stopped by the gas station (it was $5.49 a gallon, the highest in the country) to put 5 or so gallons in. The guys talked to the lady in the gas station and got a map of places to see. So we got the low down on where to go and started driving. Gary was driving, so we harassed him as we drove right by a few of those highlighted places. Finally we arrived at the Beaver Island lighthouse to climb 52 stairs to the top. This is where it got ugly. Gary's dad took over driving and we were looking for the big tree and the big rock. We felt like we were driving around in circles for hours. We did do a little circle tour but eventually found the big rock (which was very large) and the big birch tree or the Bicentennial Tree of the state. We headed back home, which seemed like it took forever.







6:00pm Arrive back at the house to repack for dinner. We had a nice (and expensive) dinner at Nina's on the lake. Good food, great company.

7:30pm: Back at the house, got Anna ready for bed and we were all sitting around the table in what the Wyman’s refer to as the, “Big House” when my dad found a poem in the living room titled, “Ode to Anna”. Thinking that this might be something cool to read dad brought it into the dining room where we were all hanging out and read it out loud to all of us. I wish that I had the text of the poem with me now to place in the blog, but I did not think that far ahead. In short the poem was about a woman named Anna from Beaver Island who according to the poem was the, “Emerald of Beaver Isle”. The poem talked about her life and death and her wishes for the family to continue on. Upon our return to the mainland I made a point to ask both Matt and Mike about the poem since I was very curious about the history behind it. It turns out that the Anna of Ode to Anna was their grandmother who was born on Beaver Island; their Grandfather met their Grandmother when he was stationed on Beaver Island while working on charting the great lakes. The history of the property then turns out that the, “Big House” was their grandparent’s home, and the, “Small House” was their grandmother’s brother’s house who was from what Mike remembers a lifelong bachelor which is why the small house is so small. How neat is it that we had another Anna back on the property once again, I can’t help but wonder if their grandparents were looking down and smiling?

8:30pm: We wanted ice cream and found that the whole town shuts down around 8. Not a soul in sight. So Gary and I headed back to the house.

10:30pm: We all started to get ready for bed and turned in for the evening.


Saturday, July 12

5:00am: Anna wakes up coughing and seems slightly un-rested, probably because the air in the house felt damp and musty. I hear her coughing so it's time to get up and check on her, in the living room I'm greeted by mom and Sheila also checking on Anna. We put Anna back down and hope for some more sleep.

7:00am: Anna wakes up for good this time so Gary and I get up with her and begin our day. Everyone follows suit shortly there after, some brave a cold shower and the rest get ready for the day.

8:15am: Head out to Dalwhinnie's for some giant full of goodness cinnamon rolls.

9:00am: Take a walk around town. See some people setting up for a small art show, take a picture of a giant hole in a tree and visit mom's friend Terry at the Harborview Motel. Strolled a bit more and went in shops that were open and visited with the locals.




10:00am: Mom talks to Terry and says that with how congested Anna was, we were going to head back that day to the main land and stay in Charlevoix a night because of it. She says she has vouchers she can give out a couple times a summer and she would love for us to use it. So we obliged as we were loving island life, packed up our things from the house and moved into the motel.

10:45am: Sheila stays back with Anna while dad, mom, Gary and I head out to Whiskey Point to see the Poker Run come in. Anna sleeps a bit, eats and plays.



12:00pm: We head back to the motel, regroup for lunch at Daddy Franks for some good ole island deep fried food.

12:45pm: Gary and Anna stay back for a well needed nap for the both of them. Meanwhile, the girls and dad head out to check out the shops and stock up on Beaver Island gear.

3:00pm: We get back to the motel, wake up Gary to head out to the Antique Toy Museum and Marine Historical Society. The toy museum with very kid oriented nickel and dime treasures, along with beads, little toys, games and a strange woman who runs it to boot. She seemed to fit in well. The marine museum was cool. Filled with history of the marine life that once was. The man was very friendly and talkative until..... he asked me what I thought of global warming. Ha. I laughed and said I think it's a big marketing ploy. He said well I think George Bush would agree. After that he wouldn't look or talk to us much more. Apparently he didn't like my answer. With that said and the face of that crazy lady at the toy museum has sign and stickers made that said "This mama's for Obama", I was charting democratic waters. :)
4:15pm: Head back to the motel where mom and Anna are hanging out. We decide to go sit by the pool (the only pool on the island). Anna of course freaked out at first, but soon loved kicking the water. So I brought her in to get her suit on. I gave her to daddy and she loved being in the pool! I went and got my suit on, so we played pass the baby in the pool between Gary, Sheila and I. We swung her around and even dunked her under once. She did awesome, didn't cry once. We had such a good time in the pool. I miss having one or at least a lake to go to! Someday. :)

video

5:30pm: All of us head in to get ready for dinner. We asked Terry what would be a good place to grab some good food. So we packed ourselves up in the Trooper and went to Stoney Acre Grill, a barn like restaurant with Donnegal Danny's Pub attached. We had a great dinner with great company.

7:00pm: Back at the motel for some R&R. Anna had a bath in the sink, ate and drank some grub and went to bed. She was quite tuckered out from the busy day we had!

8:15pm: Gary, Sheila and I walked up to Daddy Franks again for some ice cream - the only way to end a vacation day. It was a hoppin' place with it being a summer kids hang out. When we approached the counter, we found two high school, we thought, guys running the place. One seemed like a surfer, punk kid and the other a hippie, super happy guy. Gary asked for extra butterscotch on his sundae (after I saw him dump a ton on already), he got it back and said "thanks for hooking a brother up". All this after the bantor between the two of them on how many people were in line, running out of ice cream or hot fudge and various other oddities, he comes back to Gary with "keepen it real for all the gangsters all across the world." Say what? The very last place or person that we thought would say something so old school, so.... Gary. :) It was great.

8:45pm: Return back with 4 sundaes and a flurry enjoyed by all. Upon finishing our sundaes, we chat a bit and turned down Sheila's request of playing games as we were all so very tired from the past 2 days activites.

10:45pm: We start to all turn in for the night.


Sunday, July 13

5:30am: Anna starts to wake up and desparetly needs a diaper change. After waking Sheila up, we get her situated. I bring her into my bed (yes Gary and I slept apart in twin beds, hehe) to see if she'll cuddle with me for a little while. It worked for a while in Anna terms.

6:15am: We get Anna ready for the day and we follow suit. We were all showered and ready to go by 7:30am I think. Crazy!



7:30am: Packed up and headed to where? Dalwhinnie's of course. Again a repeat of a yummy breakfast. We take note that it's a tad bit windy out and hope our boat ride will be ok.

9:30am: After packing up the room, the guys bring our luggage down to the dock, bring back the Trooper and we await to board our ferry to go home.



11:15am: We finally board and notice it's still windy. The winds were out of the west and some knowledgeable guy, ahem no, said the waters should be calmer. Nope. Everyone but Sheila and Anna spent the 95% of the boat ride finding a way not to lose our lunch if you will. For Sheila, the woman behind her gave her the push to lose her lunch along with a dozen other people. Not cool at all. Anna slept the whole way home. :) It was probably the worst boat ride I've been on. But I remained focused on my breathing and ended up in the clear. Gary laid on the floor and the parents sat back and held their own pretty well. An older guy turned white and, pardon the language, ralphed like I've never heard anyone before. That's where self restraint played a big role.

1:45pm: Arrived back in Charlevoix with much enthusiasm to get off that boat! Yeesh. We packed up the cars and got out of dodge. Gary and I visited Matt and his fiance Tammy for a little while, saw their new house and where Matt works. It was nice to see them again.

5:30pm: On the road again, listening to our book where I stayed awake to listen and even drove a bit. :)

7:50pm: (GPS told us when we'd arrive home) Got home after an adventure that we'll never forget!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

A new approach

I might have to do this blog in terms of updates on the family and other adventures. We'll give it a whirl. :)

Baby Tidd #2: I'm at week 14 and all seems to be well in baby land. According to my trusty Baby Center newsletters, it's about 3.5" long and the size of a lemon. I'm still feeling well, no morning sickness or nausea this time. But this time is different as in the last month or so a lot of food I eat doesn't sit well with me. Leads me to believe it's a boy - but that's what I thought last time. :) And for all you curious souls, we aren't going to find out again. We loved finding out at the end, it made all the work so worth it. Sorry Grandmas. :) You can always get us diapers! :) I'm gathering more ideas for the room, haven't put them all together yet. The room will be a sherbert orange, I can tell you that much. I haven't felt any fluttering yet. Some pants are too tight, but I'm by no means showing yet.



Anna the Banana: She will be 9 months on Friday - hard to believe! It's amazing where she started and how far she's come in such a short period of time. She truely is the joy of our lives. We still go in every night to watch her sleep (and for daddy to move her back to the center of her crib to prevent dents in the head or stuck limbs). If one goes in there before the other, we usually find the other one and say "come look at her." She's gotten so big as the first time we put her in there we felt so bad that this crib was swallowing her. Now, she gets stuck in the rails, pulls herself up in the morning so we can get her out. She's amazing. She's crawling everywhere and into a lot of things. She's eating more and more adult food and not gagging near as much anymore (that's a relief to her parents). She becomes clingy closer to bed and just needs you close to play on or climb on. :) She babbles more and more - I hear a few more syllables of words come out every once in awhile. She has 2 teeth on the bottom and is getting better at letting us see them. She still is a trooper with letting mom and dad drag her all over town and on crazy vacations! She rolls with it like no baby I've ever seen. I swear we lucked out with the best baby ever born (Anna if you're reading this later in life, remember that we said this about you. :)).

Mom & Dad: We're boring. We wake up, do our routine, go to work, pick up Anna, come home, eat, play with Anna, do Anna's nightly routine, relax or do other things we have to get done before we head to bed. Wash. Rinse. Repeat. :) Everything is going well for us though - we can't complain at all considering the economy these days. We are truely blessed to have eachother, our jobs, money to pay our bills and great family.

So that's are update on our growing family of soon to be 4. I'm going to post again this week, maybe even today! Gasp. I know.

Love to you all!

Gary, Christie and Anna the Banana

Monday, July 14, 2008

4th of July Bash!

Last weekend was wonderfully long weekend over the 4th of July holiday! I had a "free day"off from work on Wednesday and the rest of the week we all had off. Wednesday was a mommy/daughter day. We went and visited daddy at work and had lunch with him. Then we headed to Pier One for a little shopping (I carried her around instead of the stoller, makes it a tad bit hard to shop, but I could watch her little hands better this way). And on our way home, the worse storm I had ever been in or seen crowded around us as I drove home. It got really dark, started to pour with visability almost nill and then hail. So I'm trying keep the car in front of me in site so I knew where to drive and at the same time, kept talking to Anna (she wasn't crying or anything) to make sure she knew I was there and maybe for my peace of mind that I was keeping her comfortable. Well we arrived home and I found that she fell asleep! I couldn't believe, but I can b/c she is my daughter and I can fall asleep anywhere, anytime. :) So found that the power was out, there was a river running down the alley and our garbage cans had been blown quite a ways away. Gary stayed at work still the 2nd wave blew over and the power still hadn't come on so we decided to head to Gary's parents for the night. Weak, yes. :) The power came on later that night and all has been well.
Thursday was a crazy cleaning in and out day as we were having my family up for the long weekend along with Gary's family. We wore ourselves right out with all that we did. That night, my family showed up from a long trek through Chicago to Grand Rapids traffic/construction.

Friday was a fun day filled with Allendale based activities, which was wonderful! We hit the pancake breakfast at a local CRC church for breakfast - very good - and it was Anna's first introduction to eggs and pancakes. She gagged most of the time, but she's already coming around with eating adult food so much better! Then we had lunch at the homestead and headed over to the park behind the township hall. They had a chainsaw wood carver, garden tractor pulls (which have their own website to promote such envigorating events) and a decent size car show. Anna had a great time on her first swing ride and sliding with daddy. She loved it! We headed back home for a cookout complete with burgers and porkchops, caramel apple salad and corn on the cob! Then we sat around and chatted for a bit until we packed up and headed back over for fireworks. Anna did great despite it being way past her bedtime. She enjoyed some cotton candy as well. She sat in a dazed state on Grandpa Tiemens lap and watched the fireworks.





Saturday turned out to be a big walking day. We headed to Grand Haven for the day as dad and Martha had never walked the pier before or to Grand Haven at all. We headed to downtown GH for some window shopping and to show them what store my cards are in (The Saltbox) and ending up at The Kirby for some woodfired pizza. From there, we continued down the boardwalk, stopping for some ice cream and finally reaching the end of the pier. We tested the waters once again with Anna and the lake, but again she freaked out and wanted nothing to do with it. We headed home after a long day of walking and being in the beautiful sunshine.




We finished off the weekend with church and a new recipe for dinner - grilled chicken bruchetta - and it was delicious! After everyone left on Sunday, it was too nice out to sit inside so I busted out Anna's new pool. She had the same reaction as the lake at first, but she got used to the colder water and eventually loved it! Daddy joined her and that made it that much better for her! All in all, it was a great weekend.


Love,

Gary, Christie the Boog

Monday, July 7, 2008

Ding Ding Ding..... Round 2!

I've been such a slacker on the blog front and I apologize, I have great intensions I promise. So much to do, so little time especially with the beautiful weather! I'll update you on the general life of us and next post will be events in the last couple weeks rather than all in one.

So we do have some big news to share with those who don't know already, but Anna is going to be a big sister come this January! It was a bit shocking at first, but with the shock mostly worn off now, we're excited to welcome this wonderful blessing to our family! So here we go with round 2 of updates on the size of the baby in fruit and veggies, doctor's appointments and how I'm feeling. I'm 13 weeks along and feeling great! I haven't had any morning sickness or nausea, just some food aversions and sleepiness, so if this is the way all my pregnancies will be, I'll take it! I do have to do shots again unfortunetly. I started those at week 8, so we're well on our way of being permi-bruised for another 6 months. Gary gives those to me and we're definitely getting this down pat. He's such a wonderful support and partner in all this. I don't know where I'd be without him.

My official due date is January 18. So is Baby Tidd #2 comes on it's due date, Anna and baby will be exactly 15 months apart! Having kids so close together is a bit foreign to Gary and I, since we both have younger siblings 6 years younger than us. But the more and more we tell people, the more and more we find out that they had kids that close or their siblings are all that close and it turns out to be a wonderful thing for both parents and kids. The kids will be close in age where they will be doing similar things at the same time and they turn out to be best friends later in life. So we're excited to see how this will all play out. We just know that the Lord has a plan for us, where as this was a bit different than our plan, that He has the ultimate plan for us. Who can argue with that?! Stay tuned for another baby room design with Christie. Not quite sure on what I'm doing yet, but have some ideas rolling around. :)

We tried to make it special to tell everyone, but Anna wanted to eat the paper.

We did this picture with Anna and had to do it with this one. :)

My drug of choice.... well not choice, but these are my 9 boxes of shots to start.


A week ago last Thursday was my official first appointment. The doctor wasn't able to get the heartbeat with the doppler, so she brought in the ultrasound to make sure all was well (she wanted to make sure b/c of me doing the shots). Saw the baby! Just a wee little thing. It's about the size of a lime. Saw the heart fluttering and all looked good. Gary and Anna were there, so that was a neat experience to have our little family together to see that (eventhough Anna wanted down). We also, once again, realize how much we love our nurse and doctor. We couldn't have found any better people to take care of us. God has certainly provided for us, more than we think we even need. Otherwise, I'm doing well. My pants got a little tighter quicker this time around. :) So that's our exciting news!

On the Anna front. She's growing so much everyday, it's unreal! Where do I begin (since it's been so long...)? :) Last you saw, she was figuring out to pull herself up on furniture. Yeah, we've mastered that. She's been climbing up and popping her little head up on everything. Yesterday, she even climbed the stairs (with Gary and me right there with her). She's figured out how to crawl and nixed the army crawl. She likes to get on her knees to play and she can sit on her butt from crawling. So basically she's amazing. :) Not bias at all. She says mamama and dadada when she's upset or just babbling - we're not sure if she realizes what she's saying yet, but she's getting there. She also sits and talks to herself, figuring out syllables. She's puts 99% of everything in her mouth.... make that 100%. She does sit with books very nicely and trys to turn pages which is cool to watch. All in all, she can entertain herself very well but towards bed time she just likes daddy close to her to play. So cute.


video


What a good girl, she's already reading on her own. Maybe she could teach Uncle Alex. :)

We're ready to move on to stage 3 foods and finger foods. We've been starting to give her adult food and she's eating more now than gagging on everything. We've tried a lot of things and has liked it all which includes melon, cheerios, sweet potato puffs, crackers and hamburger meat and noodles. We started that about a week ago and she's figured out the release of food in her mouth rather than keeping it in her fingers to dissolve. This will be lovely to get her off baby food and on to our food. Now about that potty training thing.... :)


So she really likes popcicles. :)

She also cut her first tooth finally! We brought her in the same day I went in to get checked out as she had been having crying outbursts at night which is unusual for her and she threw up at daycare the day before. She's quite the fiesty one, so it was hard for the doctor to check her ears as we thought it could be an ear infection. Nothing. So we just gave her Tylenol to help her sleep better and 3 days later, out popped a tooth! I think the one next to it may be coming through too, but she is not cooperative at all for me to look in her mouth.

She absolutely hates it when you wipe her face off, wipe her nose, change her diaper 50% of the time and change her clothes. I think she doesn't like being confined or held down. No one does, but she gets so upset sometimes that it takes a little bit for her to calm down. Then she looks at you with water filled eyes like you ruined her world. It's cute, but trying to change her gets very frustrating when she fights to get off the changing table or roll over. I tell her every night, we have done this every night of your life! Yeesh. Stubborn little thing.

She remained in this pose while I got the camera - she had such a disgusted look on her face, it was too good to pass up!

The post picture of eating with Grandma Tidd. :)

On the flip side, she's a really big ham and she knows it. She does this little crinkle of the nose thing when she's playing around with whomever will watch and knows it's cute and people laugh. I used to do that. :) She giggles when you run around with her and scare her a little and when daddy attacks her on the floor. She'll mimic you with sounds and screams. If you do something to her a few times, she'll lean in so you'll do it again. Now that she scurries across the floor, she'll crawl over to you whether your on the furniture or on the floor and climb you like a mountain.

Anna would like to say thank to her Great Uncle Peter and Great Aunt Yvonne in China for getting her bears (that she'll share with her baby brother or sister) and the adorable outfit!

Great Grandma and Grandpa came for a Saturday visit last weekend. Not enough attention of course (see Grandma's shirt?). Hehe.

Parental front: We're doing well. Back to work after a very long and nice 4th weekend. We sold our old maroon Taurus (so very sad to see it gone) and now have to put that money into fixing our new Taurus b/c the air conditioner unit crapped out on us already! Oye vey. Sometimes it feels like smooth sailing, sometimes it's like smacking a brick wall. Such is life. We're very thankful for all that we do have and can afford to fix, so many people struggle far more than we do.

Stay tuned for another post soon, I promise!

Love to you all!

Gary, Christie and Booger