Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Ada Lou's Last Day in Chicago

Friday was our last day in Chicago and I thought we should go out on a good note and spend a few hours at Ada Louise's favorite place in the world, Bubbles Academy! Let me just say that when I walk into Bubbles Academy, I get excited, so I can only imagine how Ada Louise feels! It is just a dream for a baby...toys to chew on everywhere, comfy carpeting to crawl on, fun things to climb on, little areas to explore (camping, kitchen, dress up, tool shop areas), people coming through every half an hour or so blowing bubbles everywhere, and soothing music floating through the space. If Bubbles is a franchise, I NEED to open one in Omaha. This amazing space will absolutely be missed by the Van Horne ladies!

A True Inspiration

A few days ago, when perusing one of my favorite blogs, Rockstar Diaries, I came across a truly inspiring story of a baby with Caroli's Disease and liver failure. Ruby Jane Taylor was such a strong little lady and though she was only here for a short time, she touched the lives of so many. I was awestruck by this story and read through her blog with tears rolling down my face. Her parents are such strong and positive individuals. Please drop by Ruby's website and sign up to be an organ donor today!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Eating Woes

What is the deal with my little baby lady? She used to devour every puree that I made her and now she is picky, picky, picky. I cannot find the right time to feed her. She is either too tired, too fussy, too full....grr. She will take a few bites and then she is over it. I can't tell if she is teething or if she just on a hunger strike. She doesn't like bananas at all, which is a major baby staple. She generally likes veggies much more than fruit.
I thought maybe she didn't like my cooking...ha ha, so I turned to Plum Organics and Ella's Kitchen. Both brands have such great selections of fruit and veggie blends! I only feed Ada Louise organic foods, so it was great to find two brands that are organic and not jarred. I much prefer the pouches to jars. I am still making baby food for my little lady, but it is great to supplement with these fruit and veggie purees when Ada Louise is being especially persnickety, if we are on the go, or if we are traveling. They are great to keep at Grandma's house, since she doesn't have a Vitamix to whip up tasty treats.

A Day at the Park

Due to the craziness of moving, I haven't been able to take Little Lady A to the park as much as she would like. Fortunately, we made up for that on Monday with a really fun trip to the park for a lot of happy swinging time! Ada Louise LOVES the swings...she also LOVES all little kids and the park was jumping that day, so she was especially smiley. It was adorable to see her waving at all the kids and giggling at everything they were doing. I will miss the abundance of parks available to me in Chicago, but I am excited for a quieter and less busy park experience in Omaha.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

More Wisconsin Pics

So, at the Milwaukee County Zoo they have a mini-train that anyone can ride on that goes around the perimeter of the park. For me, I have fond childhood memories of riding on the train with my parents and grandparents. It was so fun to see all the people at the zoo waving at me in my little train compartment and feeling the breeze through my hair as I watched the animals from higher up and at faster speeds. I was hoping Ada Louise would love it as much as me. Even though she is only 8 months old, she was a real trooper on the train. She sat on her own side by herself before the train started and she wanted to look out the window. She seemed to enjoy the breeze through her hair, as well!

A Week in Wisconsin

Whew, it really was a whirlwind week. Derek stared his job in Omaha and was there all week. So, I decided it would be easiest to pack up the little lady and the dogs and stay with my parents in Wisconsin all week. We enjoyed some relaxation by the lake, visited my mom's store, Unique in Delafield, visited my dad's office, and explored the zoo.
Ada Louise enjoyed Cheerios for the first time...which meant that Olivia really enjoyed them, too...ha ha. Olivia would plant herself at the bottom of the high chair and wait for Cheerios to fall. It was heaven for her. Ada Louise picked up on Olivia's love of Cheerios and eventually decided to just drop them off the side one by one for her.
Overall, it was a good and relaxing week, though I am glad to have my darling husband home for the weekend to enjoy some brunch, packing and cool Chicago weather before the big move on Friday.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

More Mommy & Me Pics

Mommy & Me Photo Shoot

Since Ada Louise has been born, we have only managed to snap about 2 good pictures of her and I. I am embarrassingly unphotogenic, so I decided to use a Living Social deal that I bought for a photo shoot to get some good pics of Ada Louise and I. Are there some shots that showcase my post-baby chub arms? Yes, but I think when I look back on the photos that won't matter to me so much. The weight will go, but Ada Louise will not be this little forever. It was a really nice time to share with my little lady...especially with so little time left to spend in Chicago.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Things I Will Miss

I have been to Omaha many times over the past 8 years to visit my husband's family and now that it is my reality that we will be living there in just a few short weeks, I have had time to think about what I will miss about Chicago after all the complaining about how much I need to leave this place. So, here is a list of what I will miss:

1. All the baby/children's resources-
I absolutely loved my time being pregnant because I had Bump Club Chicago. It was so much fun to go out to dinner and listen to speakers who had pertinent information about having a baby and keeping them happy, healthy and safe. Post-baby, it has been so fantastic to have so many great resources at my fingertips. Play cafes like Little Beans and Kookaburra Cafe, Bubbles Academy, hundreds of baby boutiques, post-natal workout classes, etc. I am really hoping to start something in Omaha to bring moms and moms-to-be together and really expand the pre and post baby market.
2. My OB/Gyn-
Oh, how I will miss Dr. Sabbagha and Agnes. They are the most fabulous medical people I know. I love love love them and thank them for everything. I can't believe that Dr. Sabbagha won't be there to deliver my second child (whenever they come about) and Agnes won't be there to bring me back to reality.
3. Lake Michigan-
It is so calming to walk along Lake Michigan with Ada Louise. I was so thrilled when we had a picnic there for Mother's Day, this year. Though I don't take full advantage of it...I love that it is there.
4. Restaurants galore-
Though we don't go out to dinner at all anymore, I will miss the plethora of options that we have in Chicago when choosing a dinner spot. Mostly, I will miss the sushi. How I love sushi...especially from El Toro and Wakamono.
5. Walking-
My most favorite thing about living in the city is that we can walk most places. I can load Ada Louise up in the stroller and head out for coffee, groceries, a stop at the bookstore, the florist, a paper shop...really anything. I will miss that... a lot.
6. Brunch-
Lula Cafe and Nookies, I'm looking at you. Lula, I will never forget your amazing local and organic selection of goodies that grace your menu every weekend. Nookies, your mango hotcakes and pumpkin pancakes are divine. Fall will not be the same without you.

Hooray for Omaha!

So, we have officially done it! We have made the decision to move to another state, away from the bustling city we have known as our home for so long. We are moving to Omaha, Nebraska and I couldn't be happier about it. We are renting a house...yes, an entire house! So long 2 bedroom/1 bath apartment with a ridiculously small master bedroom and no closet space. We are on to greener, more spacious pastures...pastures with finished basements, screened in front porches and fenced in backyards. I cannot wait! In anticipation of all the farm-fresh produce we will have at our fingertips, Ada Louise has decided to take a stab at eating whole vegetables...veggies of the non-pureed variety...