Sunday, February 27, 2011

In Which We Capitulate...

There is a craze sweeping the nation.  It's a bizarre phenomenon called "Pillow Pets"  (it's a pillow!  it's a pet!).  I had never heard of one until our niece, Eva, asked for one for her fourth birthday.   It's a truly weird thing in my mind; when I went to purchase it, I found a very fuzzy tiger (her choice) that looked kind of like a tiger rug (flat and spread out--the "pillow" version).  It then has a belly strap that "transforms" the animal into a pet.  I didn't get it.  But, Eva is awesomely quirky, so I figured maybe the obsession was just her.

Then Noah got one for Christmas.  Tasha'n'Kayla The Girls that I Love (name of his choosing, btw) is now a super-favorite, and is the only thing that can make him stay in his room at night when he is feeling less than restful (i.e., if you don't lay down and go to sleep, I will take Tasha'n'Kayla The Girls that I Love, and you will have to go to sleep without her.  Try that phrase on for size, fellow parents).  And our friends Derek and Dawn have the Tiger one for their son Kyler, and he won't go to sleep without it.  So, it wasn't just Eva.

When going to get a new key made for our garage door, we found Pillow Pets on sale for $10 at the local True Value hardware (the real ones, nonetheless, not knock offs)!  As Vivi had been most attracted to Kyler's tiger, we looked at each other and shrugged.  It was half off.  Why the heck not.  In a fit of super-wisdom, Russ suggested we let Vivi pick her own (what?  you don't take your 19month old to the hardware store?).  I winced, sure that we were going to come home with the freakin' purple, sparkly unicorn (gag, barf). Wisely, Vivi chose the bee.  Russ cited the Hawkeye color influence of black and gold.  Perhaps...
At any rate, Vivi was so excited about Beatrice that when we came home, she would not let go of Bee (for short) so we could take her coat off.

Vivi quickly learned that Bee is very soft and comfortable.  Here, as Vivi lounges, Bee demonstrates her marketed duality (it's a pillow!  it's a pet!).

At any rate, Bee has become a new good buddy in the toy department, and we are glad she is here (even though, for the record, I'm still not sure I understand the appeal).   Welcome, Beatrice!

Friday, February 25, 2011

So Manly!

Vivi has not been feeling well this week.  We've been home quite a bit, as she had an ear infection that started on Monday, compounded by a nice little virus AND teething.  Hurray!

I'm pretty sure she's feeling better though.  How do I know?
This morning she invited Jack Dog to a tea party.  Complete with tutu.  Just for him, though.  You know.  Black tie only tea parties around here.  

I must say, pink is very flattering on Jack!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

In Cars...

On Saturday, we went to our friend Parker's first birthday party.  I had great visions of snapping tons of shots of Vivi playing with her little friends, sharing toys and cake with the other babies...Except.  The Ager Play Center?  Where Parker's party was held?  They had cars.  Lots of cars.
And Vivi did not care about anything else at the party.  We had to drag her away from the firetruck to say "Happy Birthday" to Parker (most embarrassing, btw).  Parker, like a sensible little man, was enjoying the toddler area.  Vivi said Happy Birthday, wandered around for a few minutes, and then managed to find the ONLY OPEN DOOR in the gigantic toddler area, and raced across the entire play center (closely followed by Mommy and Daddy, of course), all for the purpose of...
...being reunited with the firetruck.  

But Vivi's attention was fickle, and she soon felt the need to drive nearly every car in the facility.  

There were quite a few.
Here she is, driving like Mommy, and innocently backing into the poor pink car behind her.  Daddy had a fun afternoon of imagining the headaches he'll get to endure when she turns 16.

So sporty in her little tan and red coupe!

And here driving the RV (!) one-handed, a true mistress of the road.  On a side note, the RV was TOTALLY awesome, with seats in the back and a kitchenette and everything.  For kids.  I KNOW.  I totally want one now (qualifying note--a Little Tykes one, not a for real one.  I haven't totally lost it).
Seriously, this is all we did for the entire party.  Drive different vehicles.  Still.  Everyone had a good time.  Happy Birthday, Parker!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Music 101

For those of you who don't know, the Beatles are my all-time, number 1, ohmigodilovethem band.  So, for Valentines Day, the Sanchez-Masi clan sent me some super cool Yellow Submarine Beatles magnets (along with some other sweet things that will be featured in a later blog).  I had to work today, and when I came home, Vivi was eager to show me her new friends on the fridge.

True, it sounds like she's saying "The Beedles," but Mommy about fell out of her shoes when she showed me her buddies and she (correctly) pointed out John and Paul (George and Ringo being out of reach higher on the fridge).

Interestingly, she refers to Paul exclusively as "Unca Pauw (or Uncle Paul to those how don't speak Vivi).  We're not sure why it's Unca Pauw and not Unca Jeen (Uncle John), since she certainly has both.  However, Unca Pauw it is.
Still.  Having my little lady learning the building blocks of my favorite band of all time made me unspeakably proud.  Yeah yeah yeah!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

How You Doin'?

So lately, Vivi has started referring to herself as "Monkey Baby."  But she says it in this very swanky, slightly drunken Dean Martin-esque voice.

It is both weird and hilarious.  She'll sidle up to you and go "Munkeh Babeee!"  in this very low, throaty voice and then laugh hysterically.  We're not sure where it came from, but I'm pretty sure her alter-ego, Monkey Baby, is a pretty sweet little hipster.
Well, hello, Monkey Baby.  Always prepared for the paparazzi with your sweet shades!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Yeah, It's Been that Nice.

We've not been spending too much time indoors.
The Ottos are no fools.  If we can get homegirl outside, we're doing it!
A side note to this photo...Vivi is a little weirded out by going on walks.  Apparently the thought of running down the street AND BEYOND is very weird for her.  She really preferred to have one of us walk in front of her, almost like "monster bait" (as Aunt Kate likes to say).  She almost needed Russ and I to prove it was safe for her to proceed.  Then she would get really brave and run 10 feet or so...and come to a screeching halt and turn back around to stare at us suspiciously until we caught up.

I cannot wait for this warm weather to be permanent!

Monday, February 14, 2011

The Day of Love....

Happy Valentines Day from our little Love Bug!

Don't you just love her outfit?!?  The dress and bloomers were a Valentines Day gift from Grandpa and Grandma Otto, and the fabulous striped tights were something we already had on hand.  She reminds me of a little derby girl, or a very soon to be punk toddler.  I am quite in love with the look as a whole, to be honest.  Vivi herself is quite in love with the gift the Valentine Fairy left for her (you have a better name for this phenomenon?  Let's hear it.). 
In keeping with all things red, the Valentine Fairy brought Vivi an Elmo Magna-Doodle!  She was most excited.
She was even nice enough to share with Daddy and let him have a turn.  A little snuggle time, a little Elmo, and a little Wonder Pets...not a bad Valentines Day evening!
Happy Valentines Day, everybody!  We love you all!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Rollin' with the Homies...

So today was SO NICE here in L-town that we actually ventured outside.  Noah and Aunt Kate came over for a bit of outdoor activity, and when Noah pulled up and Vivi saw what he had brought along, she was PRETTY IMPRESSED, let me tell you.

Yes, that's right....Noah brought over his big-boy trike.  Vivi was totally in awe.

There was some serious trike-envy going on at the Otto household.

Fortunately, Vivi was content to chase Noah up and down the block for 20 mts (although I am pretty sure she was in part trying to snag the snack out of the trike's trunk--very shifty, Vivi, very shifty).  And Noah, being the great cousin that he is, let Vivi have a turn on the trike.  Her feet didn't touch the ground, so she needed a little help from Mommy, but she really liked it!
So fashionable!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Nobody Puts Baby in the Corner.

Eat your heart out, Swayze fans...but that's not necessarily true.  We have been exploring the oh-so very fun world of discipline, and the corner has been our method of choice.  She's actually been responding to it pretty well.  And how do we know it's sinking in?
That's right.  Monkey is feeling the stern sting of discipline herself.  

The the other morning I was getting us ready for work when I heard "No-no, Monkey!  Naw-tee!  Teem out!  Co-nuh!"  Sure enough, I peeked around the corner to find her marching her Monkeys straight to the same corner she sits in when she is "naw-tee."
It was apparently a case of double trouble.  

We keep finding her putting other buddies in time-out, so I guess it is making an impression.  So that's...good?  I think?  

She does show empathy for the trouble little ones though.  Here, she joins Baby for a little time in solitary.
And just like with Mommy and Daddy, once the time out is over, all is forgiven with a kiss.
I figure that means we're doing something right.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Wonder Where?

So lately, Vivi has been really in to this show called "The Wonder Pets." It's a show about animals who "get in trouble" and are assisted by the Wonder Pets, an unlikely trio consisting of a guinea pig, a turtle and a duck with an inexplicable lisp (catch phrase-"uh oh, this is seeweous"--I cannot stand him).

However, since it is the only thing on tv she has ever paid attention to (other than football-sigh), we haven't really discouraged it.

Tonight she picked up the remote, handed it to Russ, and said "Woner-pes? Please?". Russ replied, "Baby, Wonder Pets aren't on right now. See?" and gestured to the blank screen. "she smiled at him and said "Daddy, Woner-pes HIDING. In TV." She then stared at him expectantly, waiting. Kinda hard to explain that one to her satisfaction, I tell you. Though I must say, it was a really interesting insight to her mental process. Of course if you can't see the Wonder Pets, they must be hiding. In the TV.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

A Visit from Iowa

Apologies, blogosphere.  It has been one heck of a week!  I had a crazy event last Friday, and so I spent every night last week painting signs and sewing yo-yo flowers (don't ask-but keep your eyes peeled for a coming etsy site; I now have about a hundred yo-yo flowers to dispose of).  But the event went well, and it was worth it.  And, to cap off our weekend (and the end of my sewing adventure), Derek, Dawn, and Kyler came to visit us!

It was so great to get to spend some time with them.  We all kicked back and relaxed.  There was lots and lots of pajama time!  And lots of cooking!  
All the cooking led to many attacks by the vicious and devious potholders.  The kitchen was a dangerous zone in the morning!
Later, Noah and Aunt Kate came over and everyone embarked on a sledding adventure!  We packed up and drove out to  Irving, where Kate and I used to sled when we were little.  It's a huge hill!  The boys were so excited!....until we got there and realized there was no slow left on the hill.  But when in doubt, improvise.  Dawn had the brilliant idea to go sledding in our back yard!  All the snow earlier in the week was piled up.
Yeah.  It's piled that high.  Russ could sled down on it with the kids.  Who were, in fact, having a blast.  Noah and Kyler got along great!
After a rousing snow fight, we all hung out and watched the Super Bowl together before Clan Grooters had to head back to Iowa on Monday morning.  It was so nice to have them here with us, and we're hoping to head over there and see them soon!