Tuesday, June 29, 2010

What's Right and Wrong

I think most people who read my blog know that Steve, the girls, and I live in North Minneapolis. Also, if you know North Minneapolis, you know that we are the minority as far as race is concerned. When we first moved here and I spent a lot of time at home with the girls, sometimes my news for Steve at the end of the day would be, "Guess what? I saw a white person walking down the street today!" I am totally not kidding about this.

One of the exciting parts about moving here for me was the fact that we would be surrounded by people of different color and ethnicity. Steve and I talked about the fact that our girls would grow up thinking so differently about people who didn't look the same as them. Well, actually I should say they will grown up not thinking differently about people who don't have the same color skin or the same type of hair.

Steve and I both grew up in rural America where people of different ethnicities were not common. I remember knowing two people who were not white like me. Two. And I didn't meet them until I was 12 or 13 years old. Our hope for our girls is that they will see all people as just that, people. Nothing more, nothing less.

So today I took the girls to eat dinner at the deli at Byerly's in the hour I had between work and Steve's softball game. We got our "chicken and rice" as the girls call Asian food, and took a seat.

Tryn picked our seat and right after we sat down she turned around to look at the people sitting behind her. It wasn't just a *glance to see whose there*. It was more like *stare, stare, stare, not look away, stare some more*.

I looked at what had caught her attention and it was a Native American man who was facing her, talking to a woman. I told Tryn to turn around and that it wasn't nice to stare, all the while thinking, "She is staring at a Native American? She doesn't stare at African Americans, Asians, or Mexicans, but she's staring at a Native America?! What in the world?!"

But she wouldn't stop turning around to look at him.

Finally, I was getting a little frustrated and I said, "Tryn, please stop turning around and staring at people. It's rude to stare, which means it's not a nice thing to do."

And she turned and looked at me and said, "But Mom, he's wearing a necklace. HE's (as in men in general) aren't supposed to wear necklaces, are they?"

"Well, yes Tryn. Boys can wear necklaces if they want to."

"But Daddy doesn't wear necklaces, does he?"

"Nope, Daddy doesn't. But he could if he wanted to."

"But he's not supposed to, necklaces are for girls."

I love that although Tryn has never been around a Native American before, she didn't care that he had different color skin than us or that he spoke differently than us. No, the weird part of her day is that for the first time she saw a boy wearing a necklace.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Crazy Week

I didn't blog one single time in the past week.

It was a crazy and weird week. We took two trips to the ER for the worst flu our family has had. Steve had to be hooked up to an IV on Tuesday to get some liquids in him, he hadn't been able to keep anything down for hours and was so dehydrated. Berlin had a late night trip to the ER on Thursday because she was also not able to stop throwing up.

Tuesday a good family friend of ours, Michele, died rather suddenly from cancer. Her family and our family know each other from Open Door. Her funeral was on Saturday.

On Friday we had the most bizarre storm I have ever seen. It rained so intensely for an hour that this is what happened to our street:

Our sidewalk was underwater and we could not see the curb at all. Both of our cars got wet floors in the inside. Steve moved them during the rain and our Pontiac didn't work the entire next day while the engine was drying out.

Like I said, it was a crazy week.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Randomness for Sunday Afternoon

I am blogging twice in one day which is just bizarre since I often can't get myself to blog twice a week, but I have some random things...

1. This morning Berlin was trying to smash play-dough against her face in order to get an imprint of her face in the play-dough, something her father taught her. Awhile later she came up to me and said, "I have owie in my nose," while shoving her little finger repeatedly into her left nostril. I looked up there but could not see anything. She persisted though, that she had, "An ouchie up there." Finally, I plugged the right side of her nose and told her to blow and a big green booger sized piece of play-dough shot out and landed in my hand.

2. I have spent a leisurely morning sitting on the front porch reading a magazine while the girls played in the kiddie pool. I read an article that told me how often I should wash each piece of clothing that I wear. Jeans = 4 to 5 wears, blouses = 2 to 4, t-shirts = EVERY time you wear them for longer than 4 hours, and the list goes on and on. This is fun information because it makes me feel better about the fact that I don't wash my clothes every time I wear them. I do sometimes re-wear t-shirts (gasp!) once or twice before washing them though. Then the thought crossed my mind, "Who in the world sits around and does studies on this type of thing?" I mean, there were calculated reasons why it was okay or not okay to wash things after x number of wears...WHO gets paid to figure that out? Seriously! What a weird job.

3. The other day we had a thunder storm, which made Berlin very nervous. We were all sitting at the dinner table eating and Berlin kept looking out the window every few seconds - waiting for the next loud clap or flash of light. After several minutes of the storm, and after Berlin had actually started looking a little more relaxed about the whole thing, she turned to Steve and said, "I don't want more, Daddy. Push a button. Turn it off." Haha!!

4. I am really obsessed with Nutella right now. I might have to go to the store and buy some before this day is done.

5. The other day some of the HS students from where I work were taking a bus tour of North and we stopped by my house. A few people really needed to use the bathroom, but I couldn't let them in my house because it was too messy. *Sigh* I am having a really hard time getting this place under control since we came back from Nashville.

6. Right now Tryn is supposed to be having nap/rest time and she is in my room belting out her own version of "Jesus Loves Me" as loud as she can.

Sweet Cece's

While we were in Nashville Rollie and Cait brought us to a new ice cream place, Sweet Cece's. So yum. If there is any topping that you could think of to put on your ice cream I am pretty sure they have it.

My girls were amazed, not only by the sheer volume of treats at their eye level, but they got to pick whatever they wanted to put on their ice cream. Heaven.

My bff, Cait :)

Friday, June 18, 2010

Tryn's Letters

Another thing that happened in Nashville is shown here in this video. Tryn figured out her letters. I actually just made this video today, but Tryn figured this out while in Nashville. We have been working on, "Tryn, T-T-Tryn starts with a t and so does the word toy...and train...and table, ect," for quite a long time. She memorized names and certain words. She knew what letter each of our names started with, but I think just because we talked about it so many times.

Last Friday I was pushing Tryn around in a cart in a grocery store in Nashville and Tryn said, "Mom, b-b-bread starts with a b!" And then, without any prompting she just started talking about everything, "Mom! R-r-Rollie! He starts with an r! And a-a-apple starts with an a!" and she just went on and on. Like it suddenly clicked. Check it out:

Reading Baby Berlin

Okay, so I just tried loading a video of Tryn and uploaded the wrong one. Oops! However, since the videos take so darn long to upload, and because Berlin is reading a book in this video, and because I am giving equal attention to both kids by showing a video of both of them :), and just because Berlin is so darn cute...here you go! Sorry it's a little longer, I meant to edit it before I posted it, but since it's already on here:

Thursday, June 17, 2010

A Little Birthday

Cait's birthday was actually the day we left Nashville (sad!), but while we were there we had a little birthday party pre-birthday day. Cait and I made a bunch of food and we made the cutest cupcakes that have ever existed.

See? Bummer the picture is a little blurry, but you get the point.

They tasted delish too, but they were just so darn cute.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010


I don't even know where to being. First of all, I don't understand those crazy blogger moms who blog for a living, blog several times a day, and even blog when they are on vacation. How do they have time? Or, really, how do they have the desire to blog while on vacation? I don't.

I don't even have the desire to blog after vacation. I just want to put on my pj's and revel in the fact that we survived a total of 28 hours in the car with our kids and nobody killed each other.

But, if I don't do it now I never will. Just like I never posted the pictures that I took on Memorial Day...or any of the other 1,200 pictures that I took within the span of a week.


I am not like those other blogging moms.


Nashville. So fun. I am going to have to break in into a few different blogs or will absolutely decide that I don't have the energy to write at all. For now, I just want to say that one of the best things about Nashville is cowboy boots. Cait and I love our cowboy boots and we get to where them whenevertheheckwewant in Nashville, which is so fabulous. I have had my cowboy boots since I trained my horses back when I was, oh, maybe 13 or so. They are really old and I could never get rid of them, not because I thought they would be in style again someday, but just because I loved them and could not part with them. Now I am so glad :)

Even Tryn, who also LOVES her cowboy boots (wonder where she gets that from), wore her boots all over Nashville. Of course, because that's what you do in Nashville. Or in Minnesota when you are Tryn or me.

And then you do things like listen to really fabulous music all over the place all of the time. This was a show that Steve played with Cait, although that is not them playing in this picture. It was in the middle of the afternoon, 1-3pm. Because that's what people do in Nashville, play music or wish they were playing music - all the time.

And, of course, when you go to Nashville you visit your best friends Rollie and Cait. Which is really the only reason for going to Nashville. Boots and music are bonus.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

The Past Four Years

Birth Day (well, pretty close to it as most of Tryn's first two years of life pictures are stuck on a broken external hard drive)

First Birthday

Second Birthday

Third Birthday

Fourth Birthday


Last night, after you had been asleep for a few hours already, I had to come into your room and hold you - just to make sure you were still small enough to fit in my arms. You are getting so big, I can't believe you are 4 already! With the way the time flies with you I am afraid that tomorrow you are going to go on your first date and in a month you will be married! Daddy told me last night that we still have at least 14 years until you move out of the house, but 14 years does not feel long enough to me at all. Besides, you will really only think I am one of the greatest people in the world for about 5 more years and then I will be dumb.

While I was holding you last night I was remembering my favorite moment from when you were born. You came into this world mad as can be about the whole birth process. You were making it known loud and clear that you were not pleased, and then the midwife handed you to me. I said hi to you and you immediately stopped crying and just listened to me. You also looked right at me with your eyes wide open, like you were in wonder that you finally got to put a face to that voice you had been hearing for 9 months. It is still by far one of the most favorite moments of my life. Then you went back to crying :)

You are one of the sweetest and kindest four year olds that I know. You are always so helpful. Whenever I ask you to help me you say, "Of course!" like there would be no other response imaginable, I love it! You are also a great encourager. You are always cheering Berlin on to her accomplishments and most days when you see me you tell me how nice I look (especially if I am wearing a dress;)). One of my favorite characteristics of you is that you are very logical. If Daddy or I explain to you why we are doing something, or what is happening next, you just seem to think, "Oh, that makes sense," and you go along with whatever it is. It's great. I also love how much you like to tell and hear stories, how you like to act out movie parts, and how much you like music.

Before you were born I sort of freaked out a little bit and was wondering what I got myself into by signing up to be a parent. Now I can't imagine my life without you. You bring so much joy, love, and happiness to our little family. You are such a special little girl and Daddy and I are so glad to have you, I love being your mom.

I love you with all my heart,

Saturday, June 5, 2010

The Golden Birthday

Four years ago, 10:01pm on June 4, our first baby girl came into this world and changed our lives forever. Steve and I didn't tell Tryn that her actual birthday was yesterday because her party was today and we didn't want to deal with the birthday being a whole two day long ordeal. It also gave us a chance to go birthday present shopping yesterday afternoon and stay up until 11:30pm last night decorating, baking cake, cleaning, wrapping presents, and assembling a bike.


This is how we do things around here.

Needless to say, Steve and I were definitely awake at 10:01pm last night and toasted Tryn's birthday with a glass of wine and the question, "What used to motivate us to get out of bed in the morning before kids?" Literally, until that actual Saturday morning of June 3 when I woke up with contractions, what reason had ever forced me to get up on a weekend morning? Nothing important enough to remember.

38 hours of labor later, Trynica Kryslin Haines was born to us and we have forever since had a very good reason to get up on Saturday mornings.

This morning was nice because both of the kids slept in, but then Tryn woke up first and so Steve and I got to spend a couple of minutes with just her before Berlin got up and everyone else got here. She had a hard time paying attention to anything but her presents though. :)

This was Tryn's reaction to a Princess Tiana beach towel...

...this was Berlin's reaction! Haha!!

We decided to have a little kid party this morning, these are Tryn's little friends. Everyone is actually pictured, including her cousin Tyvan who is sitting on my lap on the edge of the couch. See the corner of his little yellow shirt?

This is Tryn's new big girl bike. (Ohmygosh I have a FOUR year old child!!!!)

We also had a friend come over who was able to make some balloon things for the kids. Swords, puppys, giraffes, and crowns were all part of her repertoire and the kids loved it!

And of course, birthday cake!!