Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Harrison Pictures

My little boy had a birthday this past month.  These are just some of my favorite and totally random pictures.
Happy Third Birthday, Harrison!
(We did celebrate on time at home...I'm just a Blogging Procrastinator)...

Harrison, Spring 2010

Good Morning Mommy!

I see you!

Vacation Sleeping
Playing in the leaves with Ahnna

Big Boy, Just learning to stand/walk.

Red eyes...but still cute on Christmas Morning.

2nd Birthday, playing with phones.

Just hamming it up for the camera last winter <3.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Sensible Shoes

 It's finally happened.  I now have to wear 'sensible shoes'.  Gone are the days when I could run into Shoe Carnival (or Macy's or...well...any regular shoe store), pick up a sale pair of shoes and be on my merry way.  No, my feet have officially evolved into what I loving refer to as 'duck feet'.
Thank you multiple pregnancies.  
To be fair, this is also genetic.  I have the EXACT same feet as my 85 year old grandmother.  Fortunately, there are more options than SAS shoes.  I get to shop for goodies like Keen's and Kalso Earth Shoes. I have not yet found a shoe company that makes an attractive AND comfortable heeled shoe.  As soon as I find them, I will let you know.  Trust me.
This also means I will have limited shoes for about 5 years or so as these types of shoes NEVER go on sale...and in my 30's I've discovered that I have a hard time parting with large sums of money (this would have been handier when I was younger...).

In other cuteness news, we went to feed the Saint Mary of the Woods Alpacas this weekend.  The kids get a real kick out of this, and admittedly, so do I.

The alpacas were kind of showy this time.  One in particular was spitting.  I didn't get a picture, but Harrison thought that was pretty funny.

The Fiberist in me would love to have my own alpacas. 
 The realist in me says 'maybe we should try chickens first...'

These ladies are just so sweet!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Birds and Bees

Ahnna knows where babies come from...kind of. 
Here's the scoop.  
It all started when we acquired Otis.  The first week he came to live with us, we had him neutered.  Somewhere in conversation Ahnna picked up the phrase 'we cut Otis's balls off'.  And she repeated it, sometimes to random strangers, sometimes just to either Logan or myself...but she repeated it almost daily. 
 Now, Otis likes to lay in a sunny spot on our upper landing and often, Ahnna and I will sit and rub his belly together.  About two weeks ago, we're sitting there giving Otis his rubdown when Ahnna tells me that Otis has his balls cut off.  I (having heard this before...) say 'yes, Otis no longer has balls'.  
Then after a minute Ahnna asks me 'why did we do that?'  

Here is the rest of that conversation...

Me:  Well, we didn't want Otis to make puppies.

Ahnna:  Boys don't have puppies! (giggling)

Me:  No they don't, but they help make puppies...

Ahnna:  How do they make puppies?

Me:  Well...boy doggies make sperm in their balls and they put it in the girl doggies and they make puppies.

Ahnna sits for a minute...
and then crinkles up her nose and gets all serious and says:
Daddy did that to you....didn't he?

Me:  Umm....Yes.  Yes he did.

Ahnna:  Oh.

She didn't ask any further and I didn't offer more...but after the initial panic of potentially explaining exactly how daddy 'did that to me',
 I've been giggling about this since.  
I hope you did too.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

This week....

 Look! A picture where BOTH children are looking in my general direction!

The thing I like about this picture is that you can see the carbon copies we've created of each other.  On the left, pure Alissa....on the right, pure Logan.
I'm super curious about #3.  Maybe we'll mix it up this time?

There hasn't been a whole lot going on this week...
Lots of meetings and late nights.
(Derby & Library)

I had a birthday (33!).

And we're going to investigate signing up Ahnna for Girl Scouts this evening. 
 She came home with the flyer and very dramatically announced 'Mommy, I HAVE to be a Girl Scout'.
So we'll go check it out.

I also took the next picture last weekend to send to Aunt Sissy.  
I sometimes read a blog and everything is all shiny and perfect in the blogger's home....

For those curious, I was preparing the 'famous' and ever popular Spaghetti Casserole.
We have to keep the trash can on the counter because Otis won't leave it alone.
Harrison eats 24/7 and is investigating cereal because I starve him & not five seconds before taking this picture had told him 'no' on yogurt- apparently the cereal was handy,
and Ahnna is 'helping' me with the Green Pepper (otherwise known as playing with it...).
Yes, I still have Christmas Ornaments up from last year in the windows. 
 It seems rather silly to take them down now.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Dr. Bombay

I took this picture this past spring and came across it while I was cleaning out picture files.
I miss puggy snorts... and rubbing your fat rolls... and full-face puggy kisses... 

Even though I'm feeling nostalgic...there are habits of yours that I don't miss, but I'm going to be polite and not mention them. 

I gotta keep a little bit of perspective here....

I guess...I just miss you Old Stinky Dog.


Friday, September 9, 2011

Popcorn Festival

Such big blue eyes!!!

So it's the beginning of September and in the Tipton household that means it's the beginning of FESTIVAL SEASON!!  
Since moving back to the Marshall Area, we've been big fans of the Casey Illinois Popcorn Festival.   We went a little later in the day than usual, so we didn't end up with too many pictures because I don't like the flash setting (everything comes out blurry & with red eye).
This is the first year that we've actually 'done' rides with the kids.  Ahnna is pretty laid back when it comes to telling her that we don't have any more tickets, but Harrison is a little harder to convince.  One look at the piggy train and the regular train & I knew that our previous ticket tactics were things of the past.  We went the ever-popular bracelet route and I can say that the money spent (although it hurt to shell it out....) was completely worth it.  The kids rode rides for a good two and half hours, ate a cupcake, played on the playground and fell asleep on the way home.

Piggy Train.

This is right before the operator had to stop the ride because Harrison was trying to jump out and examine the track....

'I ride Nemo's!'

Ahnna is in the 'I like to have my picture taken with my mouth open' phase.  

I'll just mention that she ONLY ate the icing.  The rest of the cupcake was abandoned....but it was pretty good icing.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

It's A.....

 Definitely a LEG!

 Yoga pose & potentially blowing bubbles?

Playing with hands.

 Ambiguous parts....

That much we know for sure!
It might be a girl...as it was for the first half of the scan.
It might be a boy...as it was for the second half of the scan.
At the end of the appointment when the technician gave us our cd of pics,
 she apologized that she wasn't sure,
 but she's leaning towards 'boy'.
I was reassured that all vital body parts were in the right place and functioning well.
We're also measuring a week 'early'
 although babies come when they will come
and we have an ETA of the week of January 11th-17th.
Current name selections are as follows
 (however they are not binding until we actually see the face of this little Tipton)

Girl:  Evelyn Grace
Boy:  Kellan Wilder

Feeling happy, incredibly lucky, and excited!

Friday, September 2, 2011

20 Weeks

Oh, belly shots...

So fun to try and take a tasteful picture of my ever-growing (and now definite) baby-bulge.  We have our Anatomy Scan scheduled for Tuesday, so we (hopefully) get to find out if we're team pink or team blue.  Of course, I get to torture poor Logan with the girl-name-game.  Grunts & 'no-ways' will no longer be acceptable answers...he's now going to be expected to play. 
I will say that he might luck-out if we get a definite 'meat and potato' shot.  Harrison left nothing to the imagination and we're pretty much in agreement on a boy name this time. 

We've been seeing a homebirth midwife this time around, so we're getting into nitty-gritty questions like 'what kind of birth pool do we want'  and 'where are we going to keep/what are we going to do with the placenta'? 

Logan is still kind of in shock that the midwife doesn't take it with her... 

I'm hoping that I'll actually want to do a water birth, but the biggest thing I learned in my last birth was that I may change my mind while in transition and everything I thought would be nice and comfy wasn't.  
But I also wasn't 'allowed' access to either a shower or tub last time...

Most everyone we've mentioned our preferred birthing method to this time around has been supportive, 
and I don't know if we've just become those friends/family that do things a little offbeat or not, but we really appreciate the support and open-mindedness of those we've told so far.
We're truly hoping and planning for a smooth, uneventful birth 
but we are also preparing a back up plan should it be necessary.

If you had told me while I was pregnant with my first that I would be SO excited to give birth, I would have thought you were nuts.  I look back now on my first pregnancy and I was so scared of labor and delivery that I pretty much ignored that it was going to happen until I was actually in labor.  It was a medicated birth, helped lead me to my second and very empowering birth, and I'm curious how this birth will continue to change my perception of this process.
Until next time...

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Lemonade Stand

As witnessed by many a Marshall residents, the Annual Lemonade Stand Contest was a couple of weeks ago at one of the last band concerts of the year.
Of course, we had to participate ;).
Logan went to Lowe's and worked for three nights with Ahnna on a stand that would be light-weight enough for myself and my mom to set up on our own, and would still be functional.
We came up with a 'Thomas the Tank Engine' theme.
And I will say, Logan did a great job!

Ahnna and Harrison were probably their own 'best' customers....

Here is Ahnna playing on the 'track'.
I call this the 'Abbey Road' picture...

One of the contest rules was that contestants had to make their own signs....

As requested 'blue' lemonade. We used blueberry jello and lemonade mix. YUM!

More sign. It's just cute.

Blurry Ahnna by the sign....

And the only picture that I could get of Harrison that really came out. He ran around all night long and fell asleep before the end of the evening (and yes, he's wearing a Christmas T-shirt. It was clean, don't judge-lol). All in all, we were there for FIVE hours including set up, serving, tear down, and awards.
But it was worth it :)

Friday, August 19, 2011


See! I told you it wouldn't take long until we added another four legged creature!
This is Otis.
He is a One year old Italian Greyhound.
We adopted him from a young couple who just 'wanted to find him a good home because they signed a new lease agreement and can't have pets'. Logan and I took pity on them because once upon a time, we were that young couple who got a puppy without thinking it through.
That puppy was the loveable terror that was Dr. Bombay.
And yes, we definitely had moments where we thought about getting rid of him.
But we're a little older now, and a little wiser, and a LOT more patient.
We're still learning his little quirks (such as he doesn't tell you when he needs to potty....).
And he hates the kennel with a fiery passion (we're working on a solution for that....he broke the door off of the big kennel today).
But I think we're just going to have to keep him.

First Day Of School

Our Oldest started school yesterday.
As you can see, it was a bright and shiny day and she was full of excitement.

She still hasn't quite gotten the hang of 'real' smiling for pictures, but that's okay....Mama tends to still do cheesy grins too....

Logan walked her to school. He was both excited for her and I like that they had a few minutes to talk before she entered what seems to me is 'the big world'.
(And yes, she picked out the Batman backpack all by herself.)

Many of you know that we've talked about homeschooling a couple of times. Today was one of those days that I was rethinking the decision to not push for it so hard. I want our Ahnna to have a good academic experience, but I worry. Kids can be cruel. And then I remember that kids can also be awfully darn nice. We live in the small town that I grew up in and those awfully darn nice kids are now grown ups, and many still live here too (and have children Ahnna's age...).
I like that Ahnna is going to the same elementary that I went to.
I like Ahnna's teachers.
Deep breaths...she's going to be fine....
and so am I (and daddy...).

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

The Haircut Game.

I'm not quite sure why I do it....
but I like to play the haircut game with myself.

I imagine myself with a long, flowing hairdo until reality steps in
and I remember that while my hair looks 'okay' longer,
I have thin hair.

And it has gray in it that is more pronounced when it's longer.

And longer hair is hot in the bad way.

And I just like it shorter.

This is the longest that my hair has been since my first year of college (REALLY).

And so
at the end of June
I had it all cut off.


Monday, July 18, 2011

Fourteen Weeks

We're officially at Fourteen weeks today...which means...SECOND Trimester!! Here's a belly shot/self portrait. I know I haven't posted in a while, etc. but I really forgot how exhausted pregnancy makes me. It's all I could do to get out of bed, put in eight hours at work, and then hand the kids donuts and easy mac while rotting their brains on a random cartoon (insert awesome parenting award here). Finally, I'm starting to get a little more active (by this I mean that I'm not lying comatose on the couch...), knitting & reading a bit here and there, and planning for the birth. I'm sure you'll get a dose of the plans here as we think through them. We are going to attempt to find out the sex provided this little bean cooperates and we're completely unsure of names (although I have a solid contender if we find out we're having a boy this time around).

We have had a bit of tragedy these past few weeks regarding our pets. As a few of you know, our cats tested positive for Feline Leukemia. This meant that we had to make the hard decision regarding our kitties, and they are now no longer suffering (some of them had become quite sick very quickly) or spreading the virus. I still have two that I was not able to catch before vacation that need to go in and I am dreading it as much as I was the first time around, especially since one of them is our favorite. We also lost Dr. Bombay this past week. He was 10 1/2 yrs old (an average life span for a pug) and his snoring and snorts and pugg-y wiggles are missed. He has been sleeping most of the time for a while now, so it wasn't completely unexpected, but still...it wasn't a good week for the Tipton pets. Currently, we're down to three, and at the end of the week, we'll just have Gideon (sweet, brain-damaged, unable to handle noise Gids....). We're going to try and wait a while before we dive into pets again, but I doubt it will be too long before we have another kitty randomly show up on the back doorstep or a snorting creature of some sort added to our family.
So, until next time <3....

Wednesday, May 25, 2011


I'm quietly announcing that we will be expecting a new little Tipton in the middle of January 2012! Things have been quiet as I am battling the early pregnancy nausea and tiredness that will hopefully only last a few more weeks :). We do ask that you not spread the good word on Facebook for a few months as I have several friends who struggle with infertility/miscarriage challenges and it's still VERY early.
We're so excited! :D

Monday, May 9, 2011

We're Number 2!!

We did not win our first bout. (Not that you can tell from our faces...)

But, clearly, we played our hearts out!

My mama, sister, nephew, son and good friend drove hours to see this event...

And for that I am eternally grateful!
Thank you all who traveled to see the Bash Valley Clobber Girls first public appearance on the track!
Until next time...

Friday, May 6, 2011

Scrimmage Time!

As many of you know, I 'do' Roller Derby. Some might find this surprising for about five seconds, then laugh and say 'of COURSE you do roller derby'.

Full disclosure here: I'm not very good. I fall down a lot, I have poor balance, and quite honestly at the last scrimmage it became painfully obvious that I'm that girl that the other team knows they can either knock down or trap in a diamond (we call it a 'goat' in derby...). I've also taken up a horrible habit of 'lowblocking'. This means I am tripping/falling in the way of an opposing team member (it's ALWAYS an accident, but still, it's not 'legal').

But despite all this, I pop back up every time I fall. I can now skate backwards. (This is HUGE because I couldn't even MOVE backwards until recently.) I recognize as soon as I've done something wrong and try my hardest NOT to do it again. And I have a ridiculous smile on my face every time I leave practice. I love it.

This weekend is our first bout. I'm ridiculously nervous/excited/ready.
Wish us LUCK!
Hugs and Derby Love!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

The Pot Party

Not THAT kind of party...

A garden pot party!

My mama brought me to Barkley Farm Nurseries north of Paris, where we dined on cheese, crackers, cookies & strawberries, sipped on wine and coffee, and picked out the lovely blue pot.

I chose Zinnia's and Lantana's for my arrangement. The staff at Barkley Farms were incredibly helpful and sooo artistic!

If this isn't optimism, then I don't know what is. Here's to keeping these alive! Happy Mother's day!