Thursday, December 31, 2009


I didn't even get the chance to post that Ella is now crawling before she reached another milestone. Our little girl is pulling herself to a standing position!

About two weeks before Christmas, a few days before she started eating solids, Ella crawled across the living room floor for the first time. Since then, she hasn't stopped cruising. I was sitting on the floor with the computer nearby, and apparently, she wanted to know what I was doing. I soon realized she was sitting next to me...not where she had started! I plopped her back on the other side of the living room and she continued to show off her new skill. We quickly baby-proofed the living room and kitchen area, so now she's fairly free to roam. And roam she does. She loves to touch everything - feeling textures, pushing buttons, pulling anything that will move. She often crawls under the dining room table and gets stuck between the chair legs. We swoop in to the rescue, but she soon finds herself under the table again. What an explorer!

Yesterday she pulled herself up completely on her own for the first time. I went in to get her after her nap and took the picture below. She wasn't very happy, but I was extremely proud of her. She did it a few more times after that on the sides of baskets and boxes. My favorite was when she stood up next to her toy basket and looked in amazement at all the treasures inside.

Things are moving quickly in the Olsen house. We're just trying to keep up with our big girl! She is six months old, after all. So much fun!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009


Just before Christmas, we decided it was time to introduce Ella to solid food. We started out with infant rice cereal. Probably pretty bland, but what a change after milk for nearly six months! Ella seems to really like to eat off a spoon, although it took some practice. She's figured out how to open really wide as we put the food in, but she's still working on closing her mouth afterwards. Today we added brown rice to the menu, which she seems to love even more. I can't wait till next week when we bring in the fruits & veggies!
getting ready...
...and go!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Hello, Santa!

Last Sunday we made a trip downtown to Macy's to see their amazing 8th floor holiday display. We walked through the elve's workshop at the North Pole while Ella slept in her stroller. Maybe next year she'll be excited about it. (Mom & Dad thoroughly enjoyed it, though!) At the end of the workshop, waiting for us in a big, cozy chair, was the big guy himself - Santa! We plopped Ella on his lap and waited to see what she would do. She was great! She didn't seem to mind but wasn't quite sure what to do. We snapped a quick photo and continued on our way.

decorating the tree
Ang's favorite part

Friday, December 11, 2009


On a recent trip to Duluth, Ella got to spend the afternoon with her cousin Malena. Malena is just five weeks younger than Ella. Ella seems fascinated by Malena's hair and went after a fist full of it the last time they were together. The girls are just too cute together!

with Becky (Ang's sis/Malena's mom) & Grandma Scott

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

The Many Uses of Quaker Oats

This week Ella's favorite toy is an empty canister of oatmeal. She was playing in the kitchen the other day while I was baking, so I plopped the canister on the floor in front of her. Who would have known there were so many hours of enjoyment to be had from Quaker Oats? I mean, think of all the possibilities. If it's upright, it can be knocked over with a pretty cool sound. Then it rolls across the floor. Once it's grabbed (which isn't that easy for little hands and arms) the top can pop off, which opens a whole world of options. What if something is inside the canister? What if it's empty? And what do you do with the lid? See, endless hours of fun.

Another new-found favorite: the kitchen floor. Ella has discovered that if she slaps the linoleum and slides her hand toward herself, it squeaks. Such fun! It's pretty cute to see her little hand slap the floor over and over. Again, who would have guessed?

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

The Shore

I'm reaching back in our stash of photos that have not yet been posted and found these pictures from a trip we took up the shore of Lake Superior when we were in Duluth at the end of October. It wasn't Ella's first time to the shore, but it was the first time she got to touch the water. We had a great time exploring with her and showing her what it is about the lake that we enjoy so much. She may not quite understand yet, but it's definitely not too early to introduce her to such adventures. We hope the shore will bring many more memories and greater explorations in the future.

Friday, December 4, 2009


Past are the days that I could put Ella on the floor and expect her to stay in one spot. Over the last two weeks, she has mastered the art of scooting around to reach objects anywhere on her level. She seems to be the most curious about spots or fuzz she sees on the the carpet. She lifts her little body up into a plank or push-up position, analyzes what it will take to get to her destination, and then pushes herself with her feet and hands, sliding on her belly. It's pretty cute when she really wants to go after something. There's no stopping her. We know that before long she'll be crawling around the apartment, which has caused us to jump into baby-proofing. Is it really that time already?

On Thanksgiving Day while we were at Grandpa & Grandma Olsen's, Ella had her first few real crawling movements. We - Grandpa & Grandma, Pete's sisters Kathryn & Kristin, and Pete & I - watched in amazement for at least 30 minutes while she got up on her hands and knees and sort of swayed forward without any actual movement. Then, she did it. I haven't seen too many more since then, but she's definitely getting around on her belly a whole lot faster than she was before. I think she experienced what it's like to be mobile and is going after more. Yikes. Crawling, which leads to walking, which leads to running. Get ready, Mom & Dad, things are going to get busy.

An example of her recent busyness: Yesterday morning, all in about 5 minutes time, Ella knocked over my glass of RED juice on the carpet, which I quickly tried to wipe up. While I was doing that, she went after a fresh bottle that didn't yet have a lid (in my haste, I left it on the floor by the couch) and tried to pull apart the milk pump. At that time I put her on her blanket with some toys in order to finish cleaning up. She quickly spit up on the blanket and some toys and immediately put her hands in it to play. This mom is learning what not leave in her little girl's reach.

She's also learning that it's best just to laugh.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Apple Fest

For the past three years, Pete and I have been making the trek to Bayfield, Wisconsin the first weekend in October for Apple Fest. This year we made it number four. We were so excited to take Ella to the parade and out to Erickson's Orchard. She was happy in the apple bucket and loved playing with the apples, as you can see in the pictures. Apple Fest number one with Ella. They'll be many more to come.

always our first stop
and this is usually the second


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