Thursday, April 16, 2009

Oh, The Fun We've Had

In the last few months, Dan has been VERY busy with his company. Within a years time they have grown from 1 drill and 1 employee to 4 drills, 17 (or more) employees, and they have 4 sub-contractors working under them. Needless to say there have been many lessons learned about employees, costs, and business practice in the midst of it all. With all that said, he has been working long hours and feeling stressed during the hours he is off. So each moment he is home I try to make it enjoyable and plan something (ok, maybe the planning is more for me, because I feel like I don't get much Dan time and would rather not take naps or lay around). When he isn't home, I try to do anything to fill up mine and Marissa's time (call my mom, sister, or sister in law and go on some sort of adventure). Here is a little taste of our family time in the last 2 months.

Enjoying water and coffee at Starbucks

One Saturday after coming home from work around 7:30pm Dan mentioned that we should pack up and go bowling...I gave the "good idea...but really, right now, look" and he mentioned that maybe another Saturday we should go bowling. So the following Saturday in March, by Dan's request we went bowling as a family. Dan and I enjoyed competing with each other and Marissa had a wonderful time walking around the bowling alley. She was such a trooper and we soon realized that it was only logical to expect Marissa to be so good for 2 games. Although it was only a short trip out, we still had a fun together, just the 3 of us.

Dan about ready to bowl a...gutter ball.

The last week in March, my mother got to watch Aiden (my nephew, her grandson) for the day. She wanted to do something fun and I suggested trying out the Tulip Festival in Monitor. Neither of us had ever been so we didn't know what we should expect. It turned out to be a great place for toddlers. Aiden loved the tractors, the old fashioned water pumps (with rubber ducks), and watching all the kids. Marissa just loved watching all the kids. I cannot wait until she is a little older and can enjoy herself at all the fun places we go (not that she doesn't enjoy herself...just doesn't fully get it yet). After eating lunch and walking around the gift shops it was nap time for both the kiddos.

Aiden and Marissa being tulips.

We were able to get a free season pass the first time my mom and I went to the Tulip Festival, so I was determined to get my use out of it. I suggested to Dan that we go and "check it out" one Saturday afternoon. Dan had so much fun spending time with Marissa and looking at everything. He is such a fun dad and peeks her interest in so many new things. There were some Parrots there that previously had not been and Marissa loved watching them. The Parrots and Marissa exchanged "hi's" for quite some time. Dan took Marissa down the bumpy slide numerous times just to hear her laugh over and over. We had a great afternoon together, and Marissa was definitely tired by the end of the day.

Our family adventure at the Tulip Festival.

On "the" beautiful Sunday afternoon that we had a little while ago (sad, that I can say that and everybody knows which Sunday I am talking about...we need more of those :0), we decided last minute to head over to my parents house after church so Marissa could swing. Unfortunately the park doesn't have any baby swings, so we pack up and go to the Schmidgall's. We soon found out that my sister was over there relaxing outside with my parents. Almost a 1/2 hour into enjoying the sun, Toran stopped by with Aiden and Gracie. It was quickly decided that someone should go into town and get some meat for us to BBQ. The kids had a great time playing outside and we adults enjoyed the weather and had some great conversation. I love BBQ's, family, baby swings, and spontaneity.

From left to right (clockwise): Marissa swinging at my Grandma's house, Dan and Marissa at Starbucks, Marissa at Logan's birthday party, Marissa experiencing Dafoldills, My mom with Marissa and Gracie.

It took Marissa a little while to feel comfortable walking on the grass.

The day after Easter, both Toran and Michelle had the day off. We all decided to take the kids up to the Children's Museum in Portland. We spent 1/2 the day there, but easily could have spent the entire day. Aiden and Marissa had such a fun time playing with the "Bob the Builder" exhibit, in the Water Room, the Garden, the Digging Room, and so much more. I wish the Museum was a little closer to the Salem area...I think we would go quite often.

My little adventurous girl jumped right in the bulldozer and wanted to drive.

She couldn't get enough of the slide.

Marissa enjoyed picking flowers at the "Bob the Builder" exhibit.


Spring is such a fun time of year and it seems to be even more enjoyable with children. We had a great Easter Sunday! The day started off with Grandma and Grandpa Schmidgall and Aunt Michelle stopping by to give Marissa her Easter baskets full of clothes, toys, fruit snacks, and candy. After getting all dressed up, we made our way to church. Marissa enjoyed running around the foyer while Dan and I switched off watching her and listening to the sermon. It is a whole different ball game with kids...not quite as focused.

After church we headed home for a little nap and then to Aunt
Bev and Marilyn's for the Schmidgall Family dinner. After dinner the cousins had a little Easter Egg hunt and Marissa did such a good job. She collected almost 5 eggs (granted they were the obvious ones in the middle of the room) and knew that she needed to put them in her Easter basket and all. It was pretty cute. We are so thankful to have a family that takes time for each other and to stop and remember the importance of each holiday.

Friday, April 3, 2009


I have been waiting for that first word to come out of Marissa's mouth, so that I have some glimmer of hope that she will be communicating with full sentences by the time baby #2 is born (I know this won't actually be happening, just a funny dream). She actually said her first official word about 3 weeks ago while we were getting ready to go to a birthday party. Dan was in our room getting ready and Marissa was in her room playing. She yelled what sounded like "dad" and so Dan yelled back "Marissa". This went on for at least 5 minutes and we just thought it was the cutest thing ever. Now every time she wants her dad, she literally yells as loud as she can for him, even if he is right next to her. Each evening when she hears a diesel pick up driving by the house, she walks over to the door and yells "DAD". It is pretty cute.

Marissa has also said her second word, which was right after was "dog". Wow, she looks like her dad, has a
quirky attitude like her dad, loves dancing like her silly dad, and even loves dogs like her dad...does this little girl have anything of me in her...we'll have to wait and see.

Other words that she has attempted, but not said on a regular basis: hi, bible (ible), all done (da, done), eye, and puzzle (zuzzle). This is too fun.