Wednesday, February 24, 2010

A "Wicked" Winter

I know--it's been an eternity since we last blogged, and with the record snowfall this year you might think it an appropriate event and time of year to start anew. However, this is not that post.

The first week in January, Abby and I woke up way before the crack of dawn and met up with some friends on a Wednesday morning for the five hour drive to New York City. Surprisingly, the drive was uneventful and we were walking the streets of Midtown Manhattan soon after 10 am. I love New York City. I love it even more at Christmastime. Seeing Rockefeller Square with the decorated tree and the ice rink brought back memories of my youth, when my dad would take us into the city to work with him on days like Christmas Eve or New Year's Eve. Radio City Music Hall, FAO Schwartz, and The American Girl Place were all great, but there real reason we were there was to see...

Again. And we loved it, again! After the show we headed to dinner and to check out Times Square then to grab some cheesecake. Abby and I had seen Wicked in Chicago in the Spring of 2007. So now Abby had seen "Wicked" in two different cities. (Same leads though, the Chicago gals had made it to Broadway.)
This created some "feelings" in our family. We checked the Wicked touring company's website and found that the show was playing in Philadelphia, the city of Grant's youth. A week and a half later, Grant and Alex headed to Philly on a Saturday morning for some cheese steaks and and the show.

So you see, for us it has been a "Wicked" Winter!

And by the way, DC to NYC and back in a day--no problem. I am already planning to introduce my kids to the once-a-summer Wednesday matinee tradition my mom had with me and my siblings when we were young. If you are up for the adventure, you can come too.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Jakey's First Haircut

My baby. My last "first haircut." Jacob's hair was too long. I didn't cut it earlier thinking he would look younger with baby hair when I got his picture taken. The picture hasn't happened yet, but here is the hair cut.

So handsome!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

The End of an Era?

Abby turned nine last month. For the first time since she received a Bitty Baby for Christmas of 2003 she did not request anything from the American Girl catalogue. Instead she requested a locket and a scrapbooking kit. Wow, I thought, is this the end of little girlhood and the beginning of the 'tween years? I asked her if she thought maybe she was getting to old for her American Girl dolls (Felicity and Elizabeth). She assured me she was not, she just wanted something else this time. She also confided that she knew Grandma Willis and Aunt Coco had gifts for her from AG. She is growing right up. It is hard to believe how quickly it has gone. She is turning into a beautiful and loving young lady and a wonderful and helpful sister and daughter. Rest assured, the era is not over, she already has some ideas for her Christmas List from American Girl. Thank goodness.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009



Pete and Abby
Shoveling the driveway for mom.

As the rest of the country has been blanketed and sometimes downright pounded with the fluffy white stuff this winter, we here in the Washington Metro area have had nothing. Okay, there have been flurries a couple of times, but never enough to play in, (unless you live in Olney). But today that changes! School has been cancelled, the kids are outside, and the hot chocolate is on the stove. Winter has finally arrived for the Willises. Of course it waited until: Jen is finally trying to get to the gym on a regular basis (she officially began training yesterday for the Charlottesville,VA half-marathon), Grant is going back to work on crutches after missing a week and a half for ACL repair surgery, and the kids already have a shortened week because of the end of the marking period, but, we'll take it!

Hot chocolate waiting inside. Ben skipped the cold but participated in the hot chocolate.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Jacob's on the Move

Jacob, apparently unsatisfied with life on his back, has decided to make a move. He rolled! The first time we discovered him on his belly we wondered if it was a fluke, but over the last few days, each time he was placed on his back he would end up on his tummy. At 2 1/2 months, he has achieved this milestone earlier than any of his siblings who were each between three and four months.
Because the bassinet does not provide enough space to safely complete a roll, this event has also led to a move of another sort: the one from the bassinet next to our bed to a crib in his own room.
Baby Jacob is a joy in our lives. We love his sweet smiles and his growing interest in all of the hustle and bustle around him. We are treasuring each moment he is small, for we know how fast babies grow.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Christmas 2008

Christmas 2008 has come and gone. The tree was in the living room this year (and so too, therefore, were the presents), there was a new child in the mix, and the other kids got a bit bigger, but other than that it was much the same as Christmases past: little sleep, uber-excitement, moderate chaos, lots of family time, and an all-round great day.

Oh yeah, and a Wii. (No doubt more on that later.)

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Abby Joins the Emergency Room Club; Pete One-Ups Her

December saw the Willis family mark some medical treatment milestones.

After a pair of scissors that Abby had used at a church activity somehow found their way into her knee, she got to experience her first trip to the emergency room and her first set of stitches. This is especially significant because Abby, to that point, had been the only Willis child (exempting Jacob) entirely unfamiliar with ER life. We even wrote about it in a previous entry. Luckily, Jen was with her when the event transpired, no doubt mitigating the trauma (at least a little) and she is now no worse for the wear (well, except for the scar).

Not to be outdone, Pete this month became the first Willis child to stay overnight at the ER. He came down with a case of croup on a Friday night, rested most of the day on Saturday, but experienced difficulty breathing after waking up from a late afternoon nap. Although his breathing quickly improved once he received a nebulizer steroid treatment at the hospital, the doctors wanted to keep him overnight for monitoring. This was no inconvenience for Pete. Jen and I switched shifts (she had taken him to the ER -- I don't deal with that kind of thing very well) and Pete and I spent the night in a nice big room within the pediatric ER wing (a nice facility) watching movies and cartoons late into the evening and being waited upon by a conscientious medical staff. After he checked out fine in the morning, he still didn't want to leave. Why would he?

To all of you doctors and nurses out there, Thanks.

Abby's Knee -- post-scissor attack

Pete in his "alien mask" that the nurses let him bring home.