Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Cleaning Queen

I just wanted to talk about my big little helper for just a bit here.
Mostly, I just want to make sure I have a written record of a time when she actually liked to clean and help me out with chores. :)

Sorry there are no pictures. :(

Let me say that Katie LOVES to clean. I really do not know where she gets it from. I am not a clean person. I really am not. I don't know how many people actually know this fact, but I truly am a slob. Brad is a clean person, but he does not enjoy cleaning. He doesn't go out of his way TO clean. He just doesn't really do much to warrant cleaning. Can't make much of a mess going to work and then playing computer games all night. ;)

If Katie sees me cleaning anything, she immediately runs over, says "keen!" (clean) and searches for some way to help. Here is my list of what my 2 year old absolutely loves helping with:

Although she can't put away most of the dishes in the dishwasher, she really enjoys helping with what she can. She is allowed to put away the silverware (though I have to reorganize the drawer afterwards), the cooking utensils (nothing sharp of course), pots, pans, and lids. She stands next to the dishwasher and dutifully waits for me to hand her the next item to be put away.

Setting the Table
This is probably her second favorite chore ever! And it's probably my first favorite one that she does. I love that I can finish cooking dinner while Katie puts everything we need on the table! She runs into the kitchen and I hand her items one at a time to be put on the table- plates, utensils, salt and pepper shakers, cups, napkins,  juice (if it's not too heavy), and various food items that are not too heavy and ready to go, like a bowl of salad or a plate of sliced fruit or something. Brad often helps her out in putting things in the right places, like putting her plastics plate/cup by her high chair and putting mommy's and daddy's plates by our respective chairs. I also want to mention that sometimes she acts like a puppy while she is setting the table. It's pretty hilarious.

Katie is very good about picking up her dirty clothes and putting them in her hamper. She is also great at handing me things from her hamper to put in the wash, and them later putting them in the dryer. I've started hang-drying almost all of our clothes now, and Katie loves to help hang things up. We're still working on the folding part. She is much more of a destroy-that-pile-of-clothes-mommy-just-folded kind of person.

Oh my, this girl loves to cook! If i'm in the kitchen and doing anything that looks even remotely interesting, she yells "cooking!" and pulls a dining room chair up to the counter so she can help. Adding ingredients to a bowl is her favorite part. I let her dump in the flour/sugar/eggs/vanilla/whatever else is needed for a recipe. The only downside is that every once in a while, she discovers that one of the ingredients tastes good all by itself. She was helping to make chocolate chip cookies a while ago and when I asked her to pour in the chocolate chips, she instead ate a few, grabbed the bag, and walked into the living room to eat them. Haha! She also likes to help stir, though she gets tired of it pretty quickly. Even the simplest tasks she enjoys though, like setting something in the microwave or rinsing fruits in the sink.

I have a little swiffer duster that is specifically for Katie. She takes it and dusts random things for me. She never really accomplishes much, but she enjoys pretending. She also likes to try and "seep" (sweep) with the broom. It's a pretty long broom, so she has a rough time with it. Instead, I usually try to give her one of those small broom and dustpan combos. I hold down the dustpan while she sweeps big crumbs into it.

Actual Cleaning
There is no cleaning task Katie loves more than having a spray bottle in her hand, spraying something, and then wiping it down with a paper towel. With heavy supervision, she is sometimes allowed to wield an actual cleaner and spray things like the toilet or the sliding glass door, but usually I fill up a small spray bottle with water or give her my little spray bottle that is filled with vinegar that I use for cleaning most things. She does tend to over-spray however, getting a little too trigger happy with those spray bottles. After the item is thoroughly soaked, she grabs her paper towel and wipes it down. For little messes, I hand her baby wipes to use instead.

- Whenever we get home, I remind her to take off her shoes and after doing so, she immediately puts them on the shoe rack by the door, without being asked. Katie is much better at this than Brad. :)
- For some crazy reason, she enjoys throwing things away in the trash can. When I hand her a piece of trash and ask her to throw it away, she actually takes it and says "thanks!"
- Though this doesn't happen all the time, Katie is pretty good about picking up her toys without being asked to do so. Many times, she will finish playing with something and just put all the pieces away where they belong. It's pretty awesome when this happens. When she forgets, a couple of gentle reminders will prompt her to pick up her toys before she gets anything else out.
-She also enjoys putting away the groceries, putting the cats outside, trying to clean the litter box (I say trying because I do NOT let her do this, but she tries very hard to be sneaky and scoop that poop. Time-outs are more often than not related to Katie attempting to clean the litter box), closing doors, flushing toilets, turning lights on and off, and picking couch pillows up off the floor.

Of course, this post wouldn't be complete without saying the most common thing she does around the house. Or really, the most common thing any 2 year old does around the house, and that is to make as big a mess as possible each and every day. :D

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Independance Day

I never did post about our 4th of July, did I?
Well, better late than never!
I'll be brief and post some pictures. :)

We were able to go up to my parent's house in Idaho Falls (they retired last year, sold their house in Cali, and are renting in Idaho for now). We've spent the last 3 July 4th's with them, so it was nice that they live much closer now.

What's more all-American than an orange push-pop?
Yum! While we were there, we also got to see my old neighbors from growing up, the DeJongs! They had come up for vacation and their son and his wife live in Rexburg.
So, Katie has worn this onesie for the last THREE Independance days! Crazy, right? Her first she was just 3 weeks old and my sisters' girls were decorating shirts. Katie's cousin Peyton was getting a onesie decorated and it was a size 18 months. My sister Marci used one of the extra 18 month size onesies to make one for Katie. It was pretty large on her little 3 week old body! Then last year, it fit her almost perfectly, though it was still a little big. She was still in a 12 month size. This year, she was too big for it, but I used a onesie extender to snap onto the bottom so she could still wear it. I'm thinking next year i'll have to somehow cut it up and make it into a shirt or something. :)
After burgers and hot dogs at the house, we headed out to wait for the Fireworks show. The Meleleuca Fireworks Show in Idaho Falls is AMAZING. If you ever get the chance to see it, you should go! My parents had parked the RV much earlier in the day to secure a spot for us to watch.

 Katie was waiting very patiently for the fireworks for a while, but then she got bored and just wanted to run around in the fields.
She noticed daddy sitting on top of the RV and wanted to join him. I know, not so safe. Daddy's are just crazy sometimes. I kept telling Brad to get farther away from the edge.

We stayed up there for a couple of extra days, hanging out with my family. We went by the river to feed the geese and ducks twice.
 Katie loved them!

Yes, that is Cap'n Crunch. Haha! I guess My little sister's husband has bought the generic kind and didn't like it at all, so we thought the geese might. They didn't really. Lol!
Overall a fun trip. It always makes me miss Idaho even more when we go up to visit. It was even harder to leave this time though, because it was the last time i'll see my brother, and his new wife, for a LONG time i'm sure. They moved up to Alaska just a week later. Sad day.

Anyway, good thing Idaho Falls is only 3 1/2 hours away!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

7 Weeks!

So, I have approximately 7 weeks left until baby boy arrives. And while that doesn't seem like a long time, it sure does to me!!!
Summer is not a fun time to be pregnant! Our electric bill was double this month what it normally is, thanks to my absolute need to keep the AC at 72. I would make it even lower if I wasn't worried about freezing poor Brad and Katie. I am just so dang sweaty ALL THE TIME!
Ok, anyway.
So 7 weeks left.
And I also happen to be in that "nesting" stage. You know when pregnant women suddenly have to have absolutely everything clean and ready to go for when baby arrives?
So i've decided, in order to distract myself, I will thoroughly and completely deep-clean one room a week until baby is here! There are about 7 main areas in the apartment and 7 weeks left, so it works perfect! There is the living room (i'm lumping the dining room in with this one), kitchen, master bedroom, master bathroom, Katie's room, the guest bedroom, and the guest bathroom.

Today, I did the guest bathroom!
I know it doesn't seem like a guest bathroom would need much deep-cleaning, but our cat and her three kittens have been occupying that bathroom for the last month. It is also Katie's bathroom, meaning scumy bath toys and a ring around the tub. Yuck!
I did everything from the baseboards, wiping down the walls and door, taking a toothbrush to all the cracks and crevices, washing the shower curtain and liner and even scrubbing the plunger!

Here's the rest of the schedule:

(I'm going to list these by the week in my pregnancy)
Week 33- Guest Bathroom -DONE

Week 34- Master Bathroom

Week 35- Kitchen

Week 36- Katie's Bedroom (this includes getting baby things ready!)

Week 37- Living Room/Dining Room

Week 38- Guest Bedroom (definitely needs to be done by this time. My mom will be coming to stay)

Week 39- Master Bedroom

Week 40- BABY! hopefully. . .

As you can see I saved the easiest rooms for the end as I know it's going to get more and more difficult to do too much at a time. Week 40 will just be last minute things, making sure everything is vaccumed, laundry and dishes are done, the freezer is stocked with meals ready to go for after baby's arrival, putting the car seat in the car and setting up the bassinet and all that other fun stuff.

I can't believe it is getting so close to the end! Even though it feels like I still have forever to go, I also feel like much of my pregnancy went by so fast! I guess being distracted by Katie helped. When I was pregnant with her, I spent most of my pregnancy laying in bed watching Netflix. :)
Not that I don't wish I could be doing that this time around because chasing a toddler is TOUGH.
Oh boy. A toddler and a newborn. What have I gotten myself into?
I'm so excited for this new little guy though. Like, REALLY excited. Can you believe I will be a mother of two? Am I really that grown-up?
Sorry. I'm starting to ramble. I think I need to take a nap. That's all for now!

OH! Let me add a few Katie pictures so you don't think that reading this post was a complete waste of time. :D

 Oh, that little stool. She loves it! Speaking of, does anyone know how to get chocolate pudding off of a footstool? Hehe.
 Getting all pretty.
She loves to try and let the kittens play with her toys. It's hilarious! She doesn't understand why they don't think balls and horses and bath toys are as awesome as she thinks they are.

Feeding geese in Idaho Falls, though she refused to call them geese and would only call them ducks.