Thursday, December 31, 2009

Our first Christmas as a family of 3!

I apologize, it's taken me a bit to get a moment to sit down and upload pictures and get my thoughts together to write this post.  Our Christmas season has been filled with many blessings and it was wonderful to be able to celebrate with BOTH of our families! 
My last post was about the forecast for Hastings for Christmas.  Let me just say blizzard was no joke!  I got very discouraged because Reid had to work and I decided we shouldn't leave in the weather conditions late in the evening.  So, I had told my parents we weren't coming.  I was bummed, but I would just have to be sad for a bit and then we'd try and figure out when we could go.  Well, Reid called about 2pm on Wed and said his boss was letting him leave at 4.  "Should we go?", he said.  Bless his sweet heart...he really wanted to get me home for my family Christmas.  So, I agreed and got EVERYTHING packed for all 3 of us and at 4:30pm we left KC.  I sat in the back with Jack so that I could focus my nervous energy on him and we could keep each other entertained.  I truly think if we had left at any other time, we would never have made it.  There was a break in the storm on the radar and I believe it was God pausing things for us to get there!  We made it in just over 5 hours (normal time = 4.5hrs) and boy I have never been so relieved to be home.  I just had a feeling it would be a special weekend. 
Skoch  Christmas Tree 2009:

On Christmas Eve the Skoch tradition is to go to 5pm Mass and then eat at Hunan's Chinese restaurant.  We get the full spread and we were EXCITED to enjoy some great food and company.  After dinner we headed back to the house and played cards for awhile.  That night we went back to the hotel in pretty snowy/windy weather.  The whole time we were in Hastings it snowed.  They had to get over 15 inches.  And the drifts were 6 ft tall in places!  In fact, the wind howled all night long on Christmas Eve, I was up from 5am on!  And that was NOT because I was excited for Santa.  :)  When we looked out the window on Christmas morning it looked treacherous.  Cars were stuck in the hotel parking lot, the wind was blowing so hard you could barely see the building across the seat.  We decided that our little car should just stay parked at mom and dad's and my dad's Tahoe would be the way to travel.  But, we opted to check out of the hotel on Christmas morning because the driving conditions were complete "white out."  We didn't think we'd make it back to the hotel that night and we couldn't just leave our stuff there!  And it's a good thing we did check out because, when we got to the 1 road that leads to my parents house, there was literally a 6 ft wall of snow that had a pathway carved through for cars to pass.  The wind continued to blow the next 2 days and we had 4-5ft snow drifts in the driveway in front of the garage.  The amount of snow was just ridiculous!  We weren't leaving; so we had a big campout at the Skoch house.  We didn't have to say too many prayers for a white Christmas this year.
Family picture on Christmas Eve:

Jack's getting ready for Santa to come!:

All smiles for his 1st stocking:

The white conditions and if you look closely you'll see the snow wall we had to drive through:

This year was the first year the Skoch decided to draw names for an exchange.  We each had fun playing Secret Santa for one another.  Jack got some great gifts from his aunts and uncles and Grandma and Grandpa Skoch.  He had fun playing with the paper and boxes the most, though.  The whole weekend my siblings were trying to get Jack to walk.  He will cruise right along if he's holding your hands.  But, when he's standing alone, it takes quite a bit of coaxing.  They got him to take 3 or 4 steps alone though.  It's exciting to see him gain confidence he needs to get moving. 
All the kids trying to help Jack open his gifts:

Jack and Mommy:

Christmas morning in front of the tree:

He loved the bows...but not when we put them in his hair:

We left for KC on Sunday morning.  We counted 19 cars/trucks/semis in the ditch on I-29 alone (only half the trip).  We're so thankful that our travels were safe and the roads were clear.  Reid had to work that evening and I went back to work on Monday.  We had to get clothes in the laundry and get prepared for the Kirby family Christmas on Monday evening.
Getting a good's nights sleep before Christmas with the Kirby's:

We gathered at Reid's moms house with TONS of food and presents and even a special visit from Reid's cousins from Chicago, Jon and Anne-Marie Phillips.  They spoiled Jack with tons of books, toys, and a great big bag of blocks!  It was a house filled with love on Monday night.  The kids were all smiles, we had a great pitch tournament going, and lots of great family time.  We both are blessed with wonderful families and it was such a great experience for Jack, to be able to share special celebrations with each side. 
Jack's really just interested in chewing on the ribbon:

Cool maracas from uncle Scott and Aunt Tes:

Big family shot:

Jack clapping for his favorite soccer team...the Reds (Liverpool):

Family pic at Kirby Christmas celebration:

We're slowly but surely getting back to our routine.  My living room looks like Santa dropped half the sleigh in it and Jack's got a new toy in his mouth every day!  :)  We don't have any big plans for New Year's Eve.  Reid will be working until midnight.  Jack and I may go to dinner with my sister-in-law and her kids.  If not, relaxation is on my list of things to do. 
We hope you had a blessed holiday season.  May God continue to bless you in 2010. 
Until next time...

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Big boy and Blizzards...

We just got back from Jack's 9 mos well baby check up.  Dr. Cattaneo said, "Well mom, I really think Jack's doing great and you're doing an awesome job with him."  That's always music to a mom's ears.  He even told us that we don't have to buy anymore baby food either!  That's music to mom's bank account!  :)  He's ok to eat anything we eat (minus honey and nut products), we just have to make sure to cut it up really good.  I'm excited to see what we'll have for dinner tonight!  Mom and son...dinner together.  I'm sure he'll enjoy it today...but I just had a vision of 18 years down the road when he's "going out with the boys" instead of mom.  haha.  I think I'll stay right where we are for now. 
Jack's 9 month stats:
Height- 29 and 3/4 inches -- 90th percentile
Weight- 22lbs 11oz-- 80th percentile
Head- 18.5 inches
Dr. Cattaneo said he won't gain as much weight now because he's starting to use more energy as he's learning to walk.  The doctor also said "he's got great chubby legs!  Nice and sturdy."  haha. 

In other news--It's about to blizzard in NE (supposedly).  I'm trying REALLY, really hard to stay optimistic.  We're not set to leave till Thursday morning (Reid has to work tomorrow), but it's supposed to get bad tomorrow until Christmas morning.  So, our Christmas plans may not happen.  :(  I was SO looking forward to our Christmas in Hastings.  Reid even got time off and everything.  We'll make the best of it, if we can't get there.  But, if you wouldn't mind saying a prayer for better weather and/or safe travels.  We'll keep you posted on how it turns out. 
We're wishing you a blessed and Merry Christmas,
Love the Kirby's

Until next time.......

Sunday, December 20, 2009

It's a Big Skoch Family Christmas!

Yesterday we spent the afternoon in Seneca, KS for the Skoch Family Christmas.  This is the first time in the last 5 years that we've attempted to have our annual Christmas and I was EXCITED!  I love when our family can get together.  So, this was much appreciated by myself and I hope a good time was had by all.  We gathered at good 'ol Valentino's (the only place big enough for our fam) for buffet dinner and a White Elephant gift exchange.  The food was great, family time was great, and white elephant was...well, white elephant.  haha.  The most special part of the day was that Grandma Skoch (or great-grandma to Jack) was completely surprised.  She had no clue that we'd be there and boy, was she thrilled.  She got to see all her 4 great grandson's together.  It was a special day.  We remembered our grandpa Paul in our before meals prayer.  I know he was looking down on us and smiling.  :) 
After dinner, some of us headed to grandma's nursing home to sing Christmas Carols for the residents.  They just loved it!  It was a great day.  I just want to say thanks for my big, little brother JohnMarc for giving up his weekend to hang out with us and drive me to/from Seneca.  Reid had to work and it's much easier to travel with a helper.  He was a trooper! 
Here are some pics from the day:
Grandma, the granddaughters, and their sons Tucker-2, Emery (on grandma's lap) 11mos, Jack 9mos, and Tate 2 months:

Eleanor Skoch and her children:

Mike Skoch family- (l to r) Tim-15, Ben- 23, Moom, Dad, Maggie-17, JohnMarc-21, Lucy-11, Me, Jack, Thomas-13:

2 generations of BCF's!:

2 days of work for me this week, 4 for Reid and then off to Nebraska for Christmas.  Tune in later this week for 9 month check up stats for Jack!
Until next time....

Friday, December 18, 2009

9 months old...REALLY?!

Well, yesterday was Jack's 9 month birthday!  That means he's been outside of me for the same time he was inside of me!  It's almost surreal to think that all this time has passed.  We've had some ups and downs and I'm sure there are plenty to follow.  Jack's a happy, talkative, playful little boy.  His smile just melts my heart.  I sure am loving being a mommy.  Here are some pictures we snapped yesterday...
Bathtime for the birthday boy:

All clean and all smiles:

I have to get a monthly picture with my little guy:

Mommy's chasing after him with the camera...he thinks we're so silly!:

Thanks for checking in on us.  Until next time...

Monday, December 14, 2009

I scream, you scream, we ALL scream for ice cream!

Tonight Reid, Jack and I went to a yummy Mexican restaurant for dinner.  Jack is always so well-behaved in restaurants, but tonight he was extra vocal!  He was 'oohing and aahing' at the top of his lungs.  We tried to occupy him with cereal puffs and he was STUFFING them one by one in his mouth.  When those were gone, we resorted to toys...didn't like those.  Instead we spent about 10 minutes playing "Look mommy I dropped the book on the ground" game.  I finally came to my senses and stopped that.  Then Reid and I ordered Fried Ice Cream and Jack could barely take watching us enjoy the sweet treat.  So, I decided what the about a little vanilla ice cream.  YUM-MY...he LOVED it!!  When we finished, he squealed for more.  He was SO mad I stopped feeding it to him.  We managed to get him bundled up and out the door without too much of a commotion.  I guess he inherited his mommy's love of this cold treat.  Don't mess with a me or my son when you take away our ice cream.  :)

Sunday, December 13, 2009

The weekend is over!?!

Well, it's already Sunday evening and it seems that this weekend was over before I even got to blink!  If you haven't heard...the Northwest Missouri State U- Bearcats WON the Div 2 National Championship football game yesterday.  We beat Grand Valley State 30-23.  We spent the afternoon at Reid's aunt and uncle's house cheering on the 'Cats to victory.  It was quite surreal not being in the stands and watching Reid play, but we enjoyed the warmth of being in the front of the TV.  Jack was even getting in on the action...he was cheering along with us!  It's crazy to think that last year when we made the trip, I was 6 months pregnant!  And now, Jack's almost 9 mos old.  Time has just flown. 
Here's a picture of Jack with Daddy after the game:

Smiles up on Daddy's shoulders cheering at halftime:

Today we have just been hanging out and enjoying a quiet day.  I sang at the 4:30pm Mass last night and so we got to sleep in today.  It's always nice when we get to do that.  Tonight Jack and I are going to try and get the rest of the presents wrapped and under the tree. Daddy left for work about 3:45pm.  Tomorrow starts the last full week of work until Christmas!  We're getting excited at the Kirby household.

We tried to take a picture of Jack standing by himself in front of the tree, but he was preoccupied with all the "pretty's" as we like to call the ornaments:

Hope all is well and everyone is staying warm!
Until next time...

Friday, December 11, 2009

Gooooo Bearcats!

It's a Friday night and Jack and I just got back from yummy mexican food with my friends Alessia and Amanda and their fiance' and husband, respectively.  It was a great time and Jack got to see Owen, his little buddy (Amanda and Daniel's 5 month old).  And I LOVE good Mexican food!  Now we're curled up watching some Wow Wow Wubbzy on nickjr.  Jack just loves his TV.  In fact just a minute ago I switched it to another channel to check a score and he looked up at me like, "Mommy...why did you just change my channel!?" back to Wubbzy we go.  He interacts very well with the characters.  He points at things and laughs out loud when his friend "Moose A. Moose" comes on between shows to give some 'advice of the day'.  He's getting very good at playing by himself in his playpen, so mommy can get some work done.  He'll sit and "read" to himself.  He's turning pages and pointing at objects on the page.  I love to watch him play. 
Tomorrow is a big day!  The Northwest Missouri State University Bearcats are playing in their 5th STRAIGHT Division 2 National Championship (football).  Now, for those of you who don't know...I've made that trip to Alabama, to watch the Bearcats for the last 4 years.  The last 3, I've been rooting for a special offensive lineman, my hubby.  This is the first year Reid and I won't be making that trip.  Boy, does it feel GREAT not to have to drive to Florence, AL!!  However, we will be watching in full anticipation for a Bearcat win.  The last 4 years have not gone our way and we've lost.  The heartache we've experience is hard to put into words.  I'm praying for a great game and an even better outcome.  We'll see what happens.  B-E-A-R-C-A-T-S!  You can find the game at 12pm cst on ESPN2. 
Not much else is going on this weekend.  Reid works every night 4pm-12am and I'm singing in the church choir for Saturday night Mass.  Then, it's 7 more working days until Christmas vacation for us!  I can't wait!
Until next time...

Monday, December 7, 2009


Well, Jack's been saying, what I think is, the word "Up!"  I don't think he quite understands the meaning, but he says "upf!"  It's so cute...he will say it all the time and he'll repeat it back to us.  So, likely it's just the sound he's repeating...but again...his mommy still thinks it's the actual word.  In church yesterday I whispered 'up' into his ear and he turned back and looked at me and squealed "Uuuuppf!"  haha.  I couldn't help but chuckle.   Needless to say I have to keep the pacifier 'muzzle' in, during church nowadays.
Today he took his first self-produced spill.  He was walking along with his walker and lost control.  He's doing very well with it, but sometimes he gets going a little too fast.  He's bonked his eye on the handle bar and now has a growing bruise on his right eyelid.  It has the potential to be a fairly big shiner. 
We've been blessed with some MAJOR sleep lately.  Last night he went to bed at 930pm and slept until 1051am!  I'm not sure what the deal is, but I'd venture to guess he's working on some more teeth.  He's been fairly fussy and squirly during the day.  So, tylenol and naps are the routine for now.  But I shouldn't complain...I'm still taking sleep where I can get it!  (That likely won't go away for awhile).  :)
Here's hoping for another great night of sleep! 
Until next time...

Friday, December 4, 2009

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

Well, it's starting to look like Christmas in our house!  I toyed around with the idea of waiting on putting up the tree, because I was worried about Jack getting into it.  But, I've even got presents wrapped under it now and he hasn't looked at it twice.  He smiled really big when we lit it for the first time and that's it.  :)

Christmas corner in our house:

The tree while the room light is on:

I'm pretty proud of my mantle decorations!:

We hope you're having as much fun getting ready for the holidays as we are. 
Until next time...

Talkin' to that BABY in the mirror....

So cute not to share--
Last night, I took Jack with me for a little retail therapy yesterday at Kohl's (I can't resist a good deal). While I was trying on clothes I parked his stroller in front of the mirror. Well, he was NOT having it at all and he squealed and wiggled his way so much, mommy gave in and took him out. So then, I find myself sitting on the bench in the changing room, half dressed, and I'm thinking to myself "well what am I going to do now...I can't hold a baby and try on clothes." So, I stood him up next to the mirror and he just had a cow! He was talking to himself, pointing, and laughing. He would slap his hands (kinda like he was giving himself a high-five). It was adorable.
One of those moments I wish I had a video camera.....:)
Any time you need a good babysitter while you're shopping alone with a baby...the mirror worked wonders for me!
Until next time...