Happy Halloween!

This is Lea's second Halloween... but the first Halloween she has gone trick-or-treating! I wasn't really sure what to expect from a 13 month old and wasn't actually planning on trick-or-treating. The plan was just to walk around the block and check out all the other kids trick-or-treating....

After the first house, though (saying hi to the neighbors) and seeing all the other kids, Lea was so excited and ready go. She carried her little pumpkin bucket and walked (almost) the entire time. She really had a blast... knocking on doors and waving at everyone. We all had a great time! I can only imagine how much fun next Halloween will be. :)

Lea also helped me carve a pumpkin today.
Yesterday we had fun at a fall festival with Lea's friend, Josh.



Fun at the Fair!

Yesterday we spent the day at the state fair. I mean.... the. day. We got there a few minutes before 9am and didn't leave until a few minutes after 2pm! Kevin's parents met us there and we had a blast. Lea was great, riding on my back in our lillebaby EveryWear carrier for the first half. Then, she walked... a lot. She loves being around the action and hustle & bustle. When we walked through the rides and games section she loved it. All the loud music, huge rides spinning around and people yelling didn't scare her one bit. She just watched and danced! I was amazed at how much energy she had. Even after a nap in the car on the way home she kept her energy up for the rest of the day. Here are some highlights from the trip...

Sharing a ham biscuit for breakfast.

Checking out some big pumpkins.
It was cold!

Carving some wood w/ Roy Underhill from Woodwright's Shop.

Hanging w/ Roy

Having Lea's silhouette made. It turned out beautifully!
YUM, again!
Playing w/ mommy

Riding on daddy's shoulder's back to the car.


Sleeping on the way home. :)


Like mother, like daughter

I found these old pictures of myself when I was a baby... I think it's safe to say that Lea has my eyes!

Me at 3 months
Lea at 3 months

Me at 6 months

Lea at 6 months

Me at 1 year

Lea at 1 year
So, what do think... See any resemblance? My mom wants me to try and get a picture of Lea wearing my blue dress (above)... that's just like my picture. Um... it's kind of hard to 'pose' a one year old! But, I'll try.


Home again, home again!

There is nothing like being home... in your own, comfy space with the people you love. It was a very long week and I was exhausted by the end of it. It was also just as hard being away from Lea as I thought it was going to be. I did keep my promise, though... I video Skyped with her every single night before she went to bed.

Waiting to get off that airplane felt like an eternity. Of course we sat in the very (I mean, v e r y) back row, so it really did take a long time to get off! I rushed through the airport so quickly and headed to baggage claim where I knew Kevin and Lea would be waiting. As I came down the escalator and turned the corner... there they were. Lea dressed in all pink, toddling around and Kevin keeping a close eye on her. It took a few seconds for Lea to recognize me, but when she did, her face lit up and she ran right over to me! It was the best feeling in the world!!!

I brought some gifts home for little Lea... one being a HUGE stuffed dog that I got an excellent deal on. Gotta love the discounts after the trade show! I carried that thing through two airports and endured several strange looks, but I knew Lea would love it... and she does. She gives that thing a huge hug before bed every night and each morning.

We had a pretty low key weekend. I just enjoyed being with my family and couldn't get enough of Lea. Unfortunately, I also brought home a cold... I am trying to take it easy so I get better fast. I admit, I do not handle being sick very well. I'm pretty much a baby the entire time.

The ABC Show went well. Our booth looked amazing and I am very happy with how it turned out. Here are some pics...

Working hard during set up
Taking a break for a photo op
The front of our booth

Team dinner

Making Bellinis in the Beaba Babycook :)



Svan and Anka



Where am I going?

Friday morning I am off to Las Vegas for the 2010 ABC Kids Expo. Every year Scandinavian Child (SCI)attends this huge juvenile industry trade show along side other manufacturers and distributors, such as Maclaren, Graco, Skip Hop, Boon and Medela (to name a few). Over 900 exhibitors fill over 1 million square feet of exhibit space. Scandinavian Child will have 2500 square feet of that space... that's bigger than my house! The show is open to retailers, manufacturers, sales reps, importers/exporters and media. It is not open to the public.

We begin planning for the next years show immediately after the current years show ends... that's right, just days (perhaps even hours) after this show, we will already be talking about and envisioning things for the 2011 show. It's a big deal and it takes a lot of work. We ship a ton of stuff to Las Vegas and we take a lot of staff. We work our tails off two full days before the show even opens just setting things up. Then, the people come. For four days we're on our feet from 9am to 6pm talking, demonstrating and selling. Even after the show each day, our work is not done. We take manufacturers and customers out to dinner. We attend receptions and awards shows. Staying busy is not a problem during this trip.

To give you an idea of how this all looks, here's some pictures I found from the 2009 show.

Row after row of exhibitor booths.
Asile after asile of people customers.
Front, corner view of our booth last year.
So, hopefully I'll stay busy and the time will fly by. Because, honestly... while I will be working very hard to ensure that SCI has a good show, I will be thinking about Lea and Kevin the entire time and how much I'd rather be here with them!


"Say 'Bye, Bye'!"

I am going away, out of town, out of state, across the country... for a week. I am leaving my family... my dog, my husband, my daughter. This will be the very first time I have ever been away from Lea and my heart is not taking it lightly. I am filled with anxiety. I am nervous. I am sad.

While I am away, I know she will be safe with her daddy. I know she will have fun playing with her grandma. But, will she notice I am gone? Will it make her sad that I'm not here? Will she understand that I am coming back?

One promise I can make is that every night, before she goes to bed, I will video Skype with her. I will sing "You Are My Sunshine" to her before bed time just like I do when I am home. Maybe she won't really care that mommy is on the computer screen, but it will sure put my heart a ease a little bit to be able to still see her every day!

I am hoping that this will be harder on me than it will be on her. I can take it. I am prepared to have a lifetime of difficult challenges... that's what I agreed to do when I became a mommy anyway, right?!

I am praying that the trip will fly by and I'll be home, safe and sound, with a beautiful, happy toddler running into my arms when I walk through the door. I will miss my family more than words can express.

On a lighter note, Lea has discovered 'The Necklace'. I found a cheap "pearl" necklace in our Halloween costume stuff and Lea fell in love with it. She immediatley knew what to do with it and pranced around the house like she was the Queen of the world! It was adorable.


Our Big Girl

Here's some of my favorite pictures from Lea's first birthday party (sorry it took so long to me to post them!)...

Excited to see the ponies!

Lea's first pony ride!

The Birthday Girl!

Yummy birthday cake and cupcakes made by mom (me!)