Life With Riley

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Riley is hilarious.  Well, I think so but then again I am her mom which does mean I’m biased, but if you lived with her you’d think she was hilarious too.

Current Riley moments:

The girl is in love with superheroes.  She loves watching Wonder Woman, the old Batman and Robin series, and anything we can find that is age appropriate for her (there’s a lot of stuff for teens rated PG-13, esp what is available on netflix streaming).  She loves the stories, and the simplistic idea of good guys and bad guys and asking questions about both.

Another favorite is singing.  She will sing anything at any time, unless you ask her to specifically sing something and she’ll clam up like the Warner Brother’s cartoon frog.  Occasionally she’ll comply but it’s always with a laugh and a smile.  She’ll sing the Wonder Woman theme song – we’ll hear her belt it out when she is supposed to be going to sleep.  She is a bit trying as her other favorite song is one she learned from Musicare but only remembers one verse:

Snow is falling on
Grandfather Mountain
Snow is falling so deep…

Snow is falling on
Grandfather Mountain
Putting all the bears to sleep

I feel for her teacher -she apparently hears it a LOT from Riles- it’s her default sing to her self song at school as well.  What can I say, the girl gets it from me I guess. I love to sing and I’m thrilled that she’s found her voice.

When she finds her tone and the right key and loses the nasal… that’s when I’ll be relieved!!!

She does sound pretty good at times, it’ll be interesting to see as she grows if she continues to be so outgoing.  One of the elementary schools we may try for is an arts magnet school where she could develop her love of music and art further.  She loves the stage and performing- I found out this week that another teacher has her sing the Ariel song (the Ah ah ah— bit) from Little Mermaid.  She’s been singing that one forever it seems but it impressed her little friends.

Otherwise things are going well at home- we’ve had a pretty easy time of things this winter. Dad’s feeling a bit under the weather but he’ll be back in the swing of things soon we’re sure.  Work for me is going great- lots of positive and interesting challenges. 

We’re a blessed family and thankful for each day we get to celebrate life together!


Hello all!!!
It has been a while since we last updated but trust me, it has been busy busy busy at our house! Except for when we were at the beach but even that was a busy time!
Riley is now two. Two years old and running strong. She is the light of our lives still and just a joy for the most part. Hey, she is two and with two comes trouble. Of course trouble for her is what other people dream of as a good day! Yes, we are spoiled and know it when it comes to Riley. Which makes it hard for us not to spoil her as well.
We had a wonderful summer, with the trip to Milwaukee, Mark’s trip to Canada, Luci’s visit, my trip to JadeCon /Indianapolis, a visit from Grandpa and Grandma Hagenbuch with Meghan and Madison, and our trip to the beach with my extended family. It is hard to believe it is over and there is a chill in the air with the leaves changing color. I constantly look around and wonder where the time has gone!
As for Ms. Riley, she is now singing, talking in basic sentences, counting to 20, and is in love with Thomas and his friends. She loves to play, especially with her trains and Belle is always around as well. She loves to play with her kitchen and tea set, she loves balls and sandboxes, and she loves puzzles and reading.
Well, it is well past my bedtime, but wanted to say hi and let you know too that we’ve uploaded a ton of new pictures from our beach trip. Click on the link to our flickr account to the right.

June Update

Posted on: June 26, 2008

Too Cute Cowgirl
What a month – lots of travel, fun with house gremlins, family time…and pictures! Riley got to spend a lot of time with Mommy over the past month as Dadda was traveling up North, eh – for the annual Canada fishing trip and then cousin Becki’s wedding in WI. Riley got her first airplane ride and all reports seem to reflect that she was quite the good little traveler. Here are some of the highlights:

  • Dadda drove up to MI in early June for the Canada 2008 excursion to the Ivanhoe River where a good time was had by all (including the thousands of mosquitoes and black flies that showed up without invitations!); we had an exciting flight into the lake as the wind was blowing a tad on the high side of the scale so there were lots of dipsey dos in the plane; on the plus side John (our pilot) was busy so we got all of our gear (and beer) flown in on Saturday instead of having to wait until later in the week! Sunday and Thursday provided some of the best fishing I can remember – Captain Horhay took Dadda to school on Thursday putting about 6 fish in the boat before I even had a bite! Horhay was also the Big Fish 2008 Prize-winner and took home a nice Crosley Washer game set.
  • After Canada and a few days of down time, the next trip was a drive to WI for the wedding; we stopped in to see Aunt Joyce which was a nice surprise for her and a good visit for the family; traffic and construction made the trip to WI a bit on the slow side, but we got to the hotel in and met up with Mom and Riley who flew in earlier in the day; we had a nice dinner at a local German restaurant and met up with some of Mom’s friends – we got to tour a good bit of Glendale (or some other part of Milwaukee) on the drive over as Dadda got a bit lost – we got the extended tour of a nice outdoor mall, complete with the Salsa music festival though – bonus! The wedding was quite nice and you can check out some of the pictures (and a couple of videos!) over here.
  • Riley made out like a bandit at the wedding and afterwards – she is now the proud owner of a shiny new Maize and Blue tricycle which she proudly calls Riley’s bike! We’re working on getting some pictures up of her sitting on her new pride and joy (she’s not quite big enough to reach the pedals but she loves being pushed/pulled around the house, deck, sidewalk, etc.)
  • That’s all for now, check back soon for some new pictures and the like, sorry about the lack of posts – but it’s tricky updating things from backwoods Canada with no Internets and electricity!

Hello everyone!
Riley is 19 months old today and continues to amaze us every day. Her vocabulary is growing by leaps and bounds, she can definitely count to five and sometimes ten. She recognizes her name if you write it and can spell it. She still insists on calling “i” “dot!” though. She’s so cute doing it I can’t complain though. Another thing she has taken to loving to do lately is put socks on her hands and using them like puppets. I love how she plays and has such an imagination even at this age! I can’t wait for the weather to cooperate for us to take her to the zoo– she is going to go crazy seeing the animals! She loves monkeys right now– and makes the funniest monkey noises too.
Today Riles is having daddy time– mom is actually coming to you from Taylor’s Tires. After hitting the consignment sale this morning, I took a chance on getting some new tires for the Outback and was lucky enough to have a laptop with me and free wi-fi so the wait hasn’t been too crazy. It’s one of those things you keep going “oh next saturday” and then forget and then repeat so when I thought of it I decided to go on and take care of it.
So yeah, nothing terribly exciting to share. There are a few new pictures on the Flickr site, just click the link to the right to get there. Maybe even some more later- maybe even some more little mini-movies!
Well, hopefully will be leaving soon so going to keep this short. Just wanted to point to some new pictures and let you know we’re all healthy, safe, and happy here. And still just amazed at this little miracle we were given.
Oh! One more thing to share… it is consignment sale time here and last night we got a mini-magna doodle for Riley. She fell in LOVE with it. So a regular one is on the list, maybe for Easter. 🙂 She just loves scribbling and watching it disappear. I love playing with them too!

Cough cough wheeeez wheeeeez sniffle sniffle whine whine…that’s been the most common combination of sounds and activities from Ms. Riley from about Tuesday until Sunday this week. She’s doing fine now and getting back to her old tricks (and some new one’s that I’ll mention shortly), but Riley was diagnosed with the croup earlier this week, she was definitely not feeling well for most of the week.

Read the rest of this entry »

It’s official – Riley has joined the ranks of the biped, walking on two feet, taking steps with no help ranks!!! Beth and I both saw her walk a few steps between one of her toy chests and Beth’s glider. Riley is definitely not up to running a marathon or anything like that, and truthfully she still prefers the ‘I can crawl’ or ‘I can be picked up and carried to my destination’ modes of travel, but the walking is definitely a real situation now. Guess that means that we need to finalize the house proofing and relocating all of the items that are now within reach of Ms. Grabby Hands.
The weather in NC is finally trying to get close to Fall temperatures too. Soon it will be time to start up with Dad’s least favorite activity – the raking of the leaves, yukola. Along with the walking, Riley is working on learning more words and sounds. Most of the time she can tell you that a cow says ‘Moooooo’, and sometimes she’ll say that bunny rabbits ‘hop hop hop’ – although you can really only hear the ‘p’s, still very cute. We’re working with her to spell her name on some of her cups, it’s neat to watch her pay attention as we run her little fingers over the letters.
We hope that everyone is checking the Flickr site for more current Riley pictures – we are trying to share Beth’s day care drop off pictures as often as we can. If you haven’t been keeping up, click right here to check out the goodies! That’s all for now, hopefully we’ll continue improving on keeping the site and the pictures up-to-date.

Dad just wanted to do a quick check in to provide a bit of update during his Daddy-Daughter time this week.

  • I knew that we had a good baby, but Riley is really showing off this week, and helping Dad along since Mom is out in LA having fun with the big Celebration 4;
  • Dad got Riley to daycare on time every day, and didn’t forget to pick her up either! I had no idea just how long of a drive it is from my work to the daycare; the drive from daycare home was a special treat every evening with Riley providing a lively commentary and plenty of ‘updates’ about her day;
  • Riley got to spend a few hours on Friday with Aunt Suz and her parents while Dad was part of an Entrepreneurial Boot Camp at the school where he teaches (Boot Camp is right making kids show up for class on a Friday night!); Suz and her Dad Sam took some great pictures of Riley too!!
  • Dad and Riley had fun on Saturday – multiple trips to the front yard for swing time, a nice stroll around the block too, and lots of floor time with Riley knocking down Dad’s stacks of blocks and playing peek-a-boo with Dad’s hat;
  • Here’s hoping that Sunday, Monday and Tuesday morning go as well as this week – I’m sure that they will, and I know that Riley is missing her Mom and waiting for Tuesday so that she can catch up and give Mom her version of her week with Daddy!

That’s all for now – check out the new pics, leave us some feedback, and check back in a while for more news from sunny NC.

On Saturday, Riles was having some floor time. She was happy playing and was doing some of her usual not crawling but pushing her self backwards on her tummy with her hands. Think reverse Army crawl.
All of a sudden, she saw something she wanted, leaned forward, and STARTED CRAWLING FORWARD. Crawling– as in butt in air, moving forward on hands and knees, real honest crawling. It wasn’t perfect and it wasn’t for long, and she didn’t quite do it as well today– but our girl was crawling.
Of course today she’s decided that she is a big girl who doesn’t need to nap or sleep again, ever! Honestly, she had maybe two catnaps of 15 minutes today and wouldn’t go to sleep till almost 10. Her normal time is by 8:30 and that is with 2 hour or so naps, plus one on the drive home generally during the day!
And to answer Aunt Nancy’s question– CJ’ers are my friends from an online mailing list, Club Jade. If you’re feeling really curious, check out our group blog maintained and updated by dunc. We’ve been together since 1995. Long story short, we’re a group that met online through a mutual love of the Star Wars universe but over the years we’ve branched out from there. Friends who are from or live all over the world and I look forward to seeing them in person every year or every chance we get. Except last year, because our annual con (convention) was the same time Riley was born. Anyways, Riley has a ton of honorary aunts and uncles that I’ll get to see for the first time for most in 2 years this coming week. And we get to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Star Wars while we’re at it. 🙂 I’ll miss Riley and Mark, but I’m just glad that Mark is the type of father and guy who would let me go and realizes how much seeing everyone means to me. Of course, I think it helps that he’s leaving for 2 weeks later might also play a part in it… 😉

Hello! Today brought Riley’s first doctor’s appointment (other than follow up after the tubes went in) in ages! Dr. Sumner even started to make a joke about it but I ruined it. Whoops. However we were all happy because the idea was if we had any doubts about doing the tubes, how great she has been doing since is proof we made the correct decision.
So, drumroll please!
Ms. Riley Anne is 27.5 inches long and 18 lbs 12 oz! Her growth curves look great, she’s right at 50% for height and weight and 55% for head circumference. Overall, she is doing awesome and pleased the doctor with her progress. All this on no afternoon nap and after skipping two bottles today!
Oh yes, apparently Ms. Riley is deciding to have no part of bottles at daycare, however she still hasn’t quite figured out the whole sippy cup thing. In a strange place, that little one! We’re trying different styles, and giving her opportunities at home and at daycare. She’s taken a few pulls but nothing consistent and nothing to get too excited about. We’re confident she’ll figure it out soon- that is one of the things she does best, figuring things out!
Also, in additional news, Riley has found her BFF (best friend forever). If you’ve checked out the pics on the companion blog, Life with Riley in Pictures you may have caught a peek! Riley’s new best friend is a rag doll version of Belle from Beauty and the Beast. Typically Riley is very easy going- if you take something from her, or one of the kids at day care does, she just basically shrugs and goes on to something else. Try and take Belle from her? Oh boy, that does not make Riley happy at ALL. So now we have a Belle for home, a Belle for naptime at daycare, and one to keep back just in case. I can’t say that I’ve ever seen or heard of a kid being so attached to something at such a young age.
Other than the usual, nothing much else going on. I’m getting ready to *GASP* leave Riley and Mark for the first time overnight since Riley was born. I go back and forth about it in my head, but everything is set for the trip. I’ll be heading out to Celebration 4 in Los Angeles, working as a volunteer and seeing my fellow CJers. We’ll have a great time I’m sure, but I am going to miss Riley and Mark terribly.
Time for bed, hope all is well with everyone and as always, feel free leave a comment! If you ever have a question about Riley or how she’s doing, feel free to comment or email Mark or I. 🙂 Sometimes we just need a little prompting to get to writing..,

I realized that I forgot some news in my last post, so i wanted to include the new info and add some new news as well.

  • Last Friday (4/13) Beth noticed that Riley has an important new addition – teeth, well at least a tooth, we aren’t sure if there are more sprouting up but one little chopper is definitely visible now; so far Riley is not a huge fan of the application of Baby Orajel, but it does seem to help, and she continues to drool like a champ as the new additions make their way into her mouth;
  • Baby Boo had her post-op checkup with the ENT specialist today and it was good news all around! her tubes are all clear, there wasn’t any infection in either ear, and she’s off the hook for 6 months until her next appointment; they did another hearing test as well – Riles responded well to voices and was intermittent with the static/white noise tests;
  • After the doctor appointment, we all went to Mimi’s Cafe for lunch, Riley enjoyed more Cheerios and orange slice, she even liked mashed potatoes and ate some real turkey as well! After lunch we walked over to Ben & Jerry’s for Free Cone day and Riley enjoyed a bit of vanilla ice cream; we also went to Costco today to pick up some formula and other items, and we found out something that will sadden Grandpa George – Riley does not like chocolate pudding! They were offering up sample cups of pudding and for a joke we tried to give Baby Boo a taste, and she made the sourest face we’ve ever seen. The chocolate pudding is a family joke – ask Grandpa Horhay for the details the next time you see him 😉

So long for now from blustery NC, we’re still working on the new pictures (although there is a new picture of Riley from Ben & Jerry’s this afternoon on her other site – she’s relaxing in her stroller after enjoying some ice cream 🙂

Flickr Photos

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