Tuesday, February 28, 2012


thank you all for your kind words about our new house! we're pretty excited (at least i'm sure we will be after we stop feeling like we need to vomit and/or cry all the time -- talk about a commitment...)

anyway, to kick off home ownership, we picked up the keys to our new place last night and took the girls and a picnic blanket over for a little celebration.

on the menu: strawberries and chocolate with champagne flutes of sparkling cider.  

for the inaugural toast: to an empty house soon to be filled with laughing and loving and crying and screaming and playing and running and bumping and hugging and kissing and messing and cooking and cleaning and growing and learning and all the good things of life.


Monday, February 27, 2012

property virgins

31 and 28.

that's how old bryan and i are, respectively, as we finally complete the last "to do" on our journey to adulthood.

said journey can include various and sundry milestones, but here's a basic overview (and in no particular order):

graduate college: check, check, bonus check
get a job: check 
pay all your own bills/get off your parents' cell phone plan: check
get married: check
have children: check, check, mini check

and as of this day, february 27, 2012, bryan and i now also (drumroll, please)...

own our very own home:

welcome to the wheeler's.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

like water for chocolate

afton was supposed to be a breeze to potty train. she showed great interest, loves her panties, hates to be wet or dirty, and tells me immediately when to change her diaper. plus, she has a bladder of steel (like big sister summer).

it should have been a total breeze.

but alas...

it seems along with that iron bladder, afton also has an iron will, and somewhere along the line, she decided that she would never, not ever, go potty in the potty (a mindset perhaps related to her deep-rooted distrust of " the machine").

she has been in panties full time (minus nap and bed) for several weeks now, and in the course of those several weeks, she has miraculously managed to never, not ever, go potty in the potty.

she sits on her little throne every fifteen minutes all day long, comes off dry as a bone, and using her bladder ninja powers, holds it (for hours) until she gets into her pull-ups for nap time or diapers for bed (and, of course, she sometimes has accidents. maybe she's even had one all over herself and the floor in the middle of the grocery store -- *totally* my bad.)

now, my overall potty philosophy is pretty laid back; it's an aspect of parenting that i'm unusually calm about, and i follow a general "comme ci, comme ca, whatevs" kind of vibe. but, for some reason, i desperately needed afton to go potty. once. ONE TIME. sometimes a mother needs a sign, even a small sign, that she is not just a complete nut ruling the land of the screaming crazies. that somewhere, somehow, in the middle of it all, progress is being made.

and today was the day.  i decided that to-day, come hell or high water, afton was going to pee in that potty. we would finally see who's iron will was stronger.

and it turns out (was there any doubt?), it's mine.

after four hours and over twenty ounces of milk, i knew she had to go.  i sat her down on the potty, grabbed a pile of books to read to her, and said that if she went pee in the potty, she could have her very own full size candy bar (mommy of the year award, right?) blinded by my need to make some kind of headway at this point, i would have done just about anything to hear that tinkle.

long story short, afton got her a candy bar.

mission accomplished.

Monday, February 20, 2012

a new niece

meet the brandest-newest member of the family:

caitlin elizabeth sutton
born february 19, 2012

welcomed by cindy and peter and proud big brother, joshua!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

fancy nancy

as one of their valentines this year, summer and afton (and mom and dad) received tickets to go see the evergreen city ballet perform fancy nancy's bonjour butterfly

i've been looking for a live performance to take my little pretties to for awhile now, and this show fit the bill perfectly:  the girls would get to see ballerinas dance live on stage (and then meet them up close and personal after the show), they would get to dress up and parade around ala fancy nancy (and what little girl doesn't love to do that?), the ballet is based on a story that they already know and enjoy, AND they would get to meet the illustrator!

first, the girls got to pick out their own outfits (their fanciest ensembles!), jewelry (the more the better!) and hair accessories (big and pink!)

then, when we arrived at the theater, they got to meet robin preiss glasser, illustrator of the beloved Fancy Nancy book series (and former professional ballerina), and have their very own book signed by her.

and finally, after enjoying a simply delightful performance (afton especially loved all the clapping), we took the ladies out for "parfaits" at "la pierre froide."

definitely fancy nancy approved.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

smiles, stripes, hearts and hugs

and one final word on le jour de l'amour:

it just wouldn't be a valentine's day at the wheeler's without hello kitty.

midnight crepes

yesterday, bryan and i went out on our first date in nearly six months. it's been quite the series of unfortunate events that has kept us from seeing each other socially for the past half-year, but we've finally broken free of the curse!

(read about our last romantic excursion, august 19, 2011, here.)

last night, bryan took me out to an asian fusion bistro where i ate all the giant plate of beef bulgogi that we had ordered to share (hey, i'm pregnant, remember?!). then we were off to see mission impossible, the romance movie of the year, which, as i'm sure it did many a young man, inspired bryan to drive around through the night at particularly high speeds.

we eventually arrived home to a clean house, sleeping children, and our cheery babysitter (plus, cute valentine's gifts from the girls!).

and then, though it was way past our bedtime, and he would have to get up in just a few hours (i peacefully slept in til nine -- hey, still pregnant!), bryan made me some crepes, slathered in homemade strawberry jam and topped with fresh whipped cream.

a well-deserved date night success for casa de la wheeler.

and the sign said

every year for valentine's day (since we've been together), i have snuck in to bryan's cubicle, office, place of business, apartment, etc. etc., and decorated to my heart's content. it keeps me entertained, and bryan doesn't seem to mind, so it's become quite the wheeler family tradition (see here and here).

this year's display was a simple eight foot by eight foot square kraft paper sign that read "just a little note to say i love you!" (get it? a little note?) which i taped along the exterior wall of bryan's office. 

here's a pic after some adjusted positioning by bryan so that he could actually get in to his office yesterday:

anyway, the odd thing about our little vday tradition is that i have been doing this for nine years now. NINE years. EVERY year. and yet somehow, bryan NEVER sees it coming.

when february 14th rolls around, i think the ruse is up for sure, though i still go through the motions of hiring accomplices and creating water-tight alibis and hiding things and sneaking around and all that jazz. but by golly, every valentine's day so far, bryan has continued to arrive at work none the wiser.

"how is that even possible?" one might ask. "are you (*gulp*) drugging him?"

no, no drugs yet (wink, wink). i suppose it's just that his particular brand of obliviousness has proven to be a marital asset after all.

go figure.

crossing fingers for next year!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

heart on my sleeve

this one's for you, babe:

just in case incubating your (third) child wasn't an
obvious enough sign of my affections.

happy valentine's day!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Monday, February 06, 2012

optical illusion

i know i just posted some bumpalicious pics a few days ago, but it just so happened that wheeler threeler's much anticipated pregnancy pop day happened this weekend (for the uninitiated, "pop day" is when one day (i'm talking, like, seriously one day) during your third trimester, POP! you all of a sudden have a giant protrusion (with super cool stretch marks to prove it), a completely flat bum (if you're "lucky" like me), and all those friendly strangers at the grocery store start asking if you're set to deliver any day now), so i thought i'd do a visual update.

here's the optical illusion/topographic belly map:

and here's the POP!

no, not quite ready to deliver "any day now," but certainly one day closer.

Saturday, February 04, 2012

warm weather

sunny and sixty on a saturday (in february!)?
yes, please.

Thursday, February 02, 2012

sunshine on a cloudy day

okay folks, i have finally decided (after almost three pregnancies!) to give the self/mirror/preggo photo shoot a try.

go easy on me: it's my first time.

why, yes, i would like fries with that.

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

little love letters

i've been waiting all year for february 1st. 

it's officially the season of love.

this year, i made summer and afton valentine's pillowcases (tutorial), complete with happy heart pockets perfect for filling each morning with loves notes and treats.