Friday, August 31, 2012

And the award for Best Picture of the Year goes to...

...Rob Ellis!!! For his video montage of his daughters' first year. Man, these kids are cute!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

July 28th: The One-Year Birthday Extravaganza

Oh man, what a year!  On one hand, I can't believe it's gone so fast.  And on the other, I can't believe life has changed so much in just 1 year! 
Friends, Family, Coworkers
So we had a party.  And if there has ever been a reason to celebrate, it was Aug. 2011-July 2012.  It was a little crazy getting ready for everything...but that's very appropriate because it seems like "crazy" has kind of been a theme for us this year...and in the end, it turned out great and was all worth it (another theme).  :)
The kiddos weren't used to having such a large audience when they eat, but before too long they were getting down to business on their delicious chocolate cake (a la Costco). 
Cake in the eyeballs.  Annnnd we're done. 
At the 1-year mark, I am just totally in love with these little girls.  

Savannah is getting ready to walk.  She LOVES music and immediately starts rocking out whenever she hears any.  She's a total ham and loves to squeal with laughter whenever we chase or tickle her.  She is happiest in any kind of water, is a mama's girl, and has crazy, crazy hair.  Savannah is such a sweet heart.  She's pretty easy-going and independent, and will just crawl away to go exploring around this huge house of ours. 
Baby's first baby...yummm
Lily is walking already and it cracks me up seeing such a little bitty person walking around like she owns the place.  She is so outgoing and will toddle around the house babbling and gesticulating, like she's bossing everyone around.  Many times she looks at you, just waiting for you to look back before breaking into a huge grin.  I love this little fake laugh/cackle she does when she hears other people laughing and just has to be a part of whatever is so funny.  Lily is curious, sweet, and full of spunk. And her dimples.  They kill me.
Lily carried her baby around 24/7 for the rest of the weekend
It's so fun to see Lily and Savannah interact and play.  Their eyes light up whenever they see each other and they definitely share a language all their own.  One of their favorite spots to hang out is on the stairs; climbing up, sliding down, throwing their toys and watching them bounce down, collecting them, rinse, repeat.   And whenever it gets too quiet for too long, my trouble-alarm starts beeping and more often than not they've learned some new trick together that means I need to step up my baby-proofing game.  

Life is really, really good and as much as I was looking forward to being a mom, I never imagined it could be so wonderful.  I'm so grateful for these little people in my life! 

P.S. and I did it: one year of breast feeding!!! Never thought we'd make it, but we did. :).

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Ironman Rob

 For the past four or five months Rob has been burning the candle at both ends because he and his good friend, Gavin, decided they needed a big goal in their lives.  (Mid-life, almost-30-years-old crisis?)

We toyed with the idea of biking across the country, but didn't think it would go very well with 2 babies in tow.  Another marathon didn't seem like a big enough goal to Rob.  So, after some discussion and not very much planning, they decided to train for an Ironman triathlon!

Since there aren't very many couch-to-ironman training plans around, they decided they should start with a half-ironman.

Training began.  And thankfully after a few months of 5 days a week of early morning workouts, long Saturdays of training, lots of peanut butter banana protein shakes, and a slightly frazzled wife Rob decided that he would have to postpone the full iron man training until he has a little more free time...maybe it will be his almost-50-mid-life-crisis?

They slept on the floor of a member of our church's house the night before the race.
So they signed up for a half-ironman race in the bustling metropolis of Muncie, IN  on July 7th.  They took off work to drive 18 hours, arrived at the race, and were told that due to a crazy heat wave the race was being shortened and wouldn't be the full 70.3 miles. 
Early Morning pre-race
They were a little bummed. 

But they did the race, got some cool gear, turned around and drove (18 hours) home, and then a few weekends later they set up their own 70.3 mile course in (burning hot) Houston so they could REALLY sport their medals with pride. 
Two Awesome Ironmen!
Rob has now sworn off any and all exercise--especially if it means he has to get up before 6am.  But I'm really proud of both of them and really grateful he's done!  :) 

Monday, August 6, 2012

June 2012: Katie is Wifed!

In June we flew our little family of 4 out to CT to celebrate my sister Katie's marriage to her perfect match, Russell.
Presenting Mrs and Mr Hill (could they be smiling any bigger?)
 We're so glad to have Russell in the family and he really is the perfect complement to Katie.  He likes to cook, she likes to eat.  He is pretty easy going, she can be a little bit intense.  :)  He is the last child in his family, she is the first.  He is tall, she is a wee bit vertically challenged.  And they both have been smiling constantly for the last few months. 
Erik is so proud...
It was great to be back in New Canaan and see so many of the great people I grew up with. It was also great to spend time with all of my family that came out for the wedding.  All grandparents, lots of aunts and uncles, and even a few cousins made the trip.  
Obligatory group shot
Erik's girlfriend, Megan, did a GREAT job as the wedding photographer. She managed to be everywhere at once and even squeezed in a mini photo shoot for us.    Looking at these pictures I realize that we are entering the stage in life where we will need to start using bribery (or threats) to get everyone smiling at the same time!
3 smiles, 1 grimace
3 smiles, 1 concerned confusion
2 smiles, 2 something elses...
Megan also took this cute cute cute picture of my mom with the babies during one of the few minutes she had to sit down amidst all of the planning, organizing, hosting, celebrating activities of the weekend. 
It was a busy trip, and we definitely need to figure out some kind of magic concoction to get the kiddos to sleep on an airplane, but we're SO SO SO happy for Katie and Russell and loved being there to celebrate with them.