Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Heffelfinger Christmas 2009

So Christmas morning it was off to grandma and grandpa Heffelfingers for church and seeing all the cousins. After church they played and played and played. There weren't too many fights and overall everyone seemed to get along. Some of us watched a movie and just had way too much fun poking fun at it. My brother thinks there should be a Cheesey Movie channel and it would just suck people in, I have to agree. The living room was a little like Mystery Science 3000. We all headed down to Susie and Kip's house in the later afternoon. The kids had fun running up and down the stairs. They played and played some more. We managed to get a game of Trivial Pursuit in. It was the Pop Culture Edition- so we knew most the answers. We had another great day of celebrating with family. The girls were having so much fun with their cousins, that they didn't even open their presents from us until Saturday morning. They were too involved to even worry about it. It was really nice and made me feel like they weren't all about the presents, but enjoyed being with family.

Now Saturday morning, they ripped their presents open and again loved them all. They couldn't wait to open everything. Saturday we just relaxed and then on Sunday we headed over the the Country Springs Hotel where Jana, Mike, and Nolan were staying to have a couple of hours of playing at the indoor waterpark. Lilly enjoyed splashing in the pool. Maddie and Emma had fun taking turns with Daddy and uncle Mike going down the big slides and Nolan could have cared less about being in the pool. We ate some pizza with everyone and then headed home. Christmas weekend was over, but the girls still like each other (at least 75% of the time). They have been playing with their new games and toys, and even sharing them with others.

We still have the week of break left and so we will see what that brings.

Janetzke Christmas 2009

Chad had his last day of school on Friday the 18th, but Emma and Maddie still had school the following week. I helped his mom at Trinity with their Christmas Shoppe and so that meant that Chad had to be the 4K helper on Monday. He had an exhausting day, but he made it through with no one throwing up on him. (last year someone blew chunks on him) He even took Maddie to the doctor after school. She had quite the ear infection with fluid in her ear. She got on her antibiotics and is back to her normal self. Tuesday he took Emma and Lilly to practice with him while Maddie was at school. Wednesday we headed up to Germantown. We baked some cookies and hung out for the afternoon. In the evening my cousin Alex came over to watch Emma and Maddie while the rest of us went to a funeral. Chad's mom's cousin passed away the weekend before Christmas. Thursday we all hung out during the day, got ready for church and then came back home for celebrating. We ate and opened presents. The girls were having tons of fun. They loved everything they got. After they finally settled down, they hit their pillows and were fast asleep. We had a great time celebrating with the Janetzkes.

A little part of Texas in Wisconsin

So the Tuesday before Christmas we got a chance to hang out with Christa, Paul, Isaac, and Faith who made the trip from Tomball to see the rest of their family up here. We met over at Julie and Bob's house (Christa's sister). It was like we were part of a little Kasten get together. Julie and Bob go to Our Redeemer and their Carter and our Emma are in the same class. Julie also was Jana's roommate in college. Then you have Christa and Paul who were at Concordia while we were there (Paul is also Chad's college baseball coach's brother). Then their brother Luke went to Westland High School which is where Chad went. Not only are all the Kasten kids linked with us, but Mr. Kasten is one of Lydia's teacher's at Living Word. What a tangled web of the Lutheran world we weave. We had a great time just hanging out, the kids played with every toy in the basement while we all just talked. It was a relaxing evening and fun to get to see how big Isaac and Faith have gotten. The "big" kids spent most of the night downstairs, so there are just a few pics from that evening.

Lilly showing Faith how big she is.

Faith doing a great job sharing her toys with Lilly

Cousins Faith and Owen playing.

Lilly just hanging out with all the adults while the big kids ran around down stairs.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Thanksgiving, Sprecher, and Everything Inbetween

So here is what began our Thanksgiving vacation. Chad had a student help day and practice on Wednesday, but we then headed up to Germantown to go to church and enjoy some sibling bonding. I was determined to for everyone to hang out, I mean come on we are all almost adults and we are always going 17 different directions when we are all there. So after church the outlaws: Scott, Christina, and myself went down to the Sportszone on Mequon to have a couple beers and hang out. While we were gone, the originals got some little kids to bed (meaning our girls and the boy cousins) and just started the party. We laughed, talked, played some games, laughed some more. I think that everyone had a good time, if you didn't then you can correct me. I think most of us were on our way to bed by about 12:30, but there were a few (those without children) who stayed up even later.

Some people gathered in the kitchen to have a drink and talk.

Others played Clue on the back porch.

Thanksgiving morning came way to quick, at least for me, I know I am old. I made a run to KMart, you might think I am crazy, but I got some really good deals on some things the girls really wanted. It is hard to pass up buy one get one on things like v-tech games, barbies, and baby toys. We all managed to fit on the back porch for dinner. That's right all 17 of us and we only had to add a card table at the end. The little kids minus Lilly were sitting at their own table. It was pretty impressive if I do say so myself. I am guessing that that may be on of the last time that happens. Maybe we need to get some banquet tables for the back porch, you know the ones like they have at church. We actually headed home that night to have cake for my dad's birthday which landed on Thanksgiving this year. Before we left we did do some Christmas gifts for the kids, since Kathy and Scott will be in Saint Louis for Christmas. It was fun to see them try to figure it out, they knew it wasn't Christmas, but believe me they weren't complaining.

Friday morning I did venture out to three stores, Wal-Mart $3 pajamas, Target $5 Barbies, and KMart $7.99 Christmas dresses for the girls. I left around 5:45 and was home just before 8. I knew what I wanted, I didn't need anything that bad, so I wasn't mad if they were all out. The rest of the weekend we hung out since the girls were feeling a little under the weather.

Sunday was the first Soda with Santa at Sprecher Brewery. It is this really cool thing they do, they have been doing it for the last couple of years and I hope that they continue it. So we were down there with Sprinklefingers to do some cookie decorating for the kids while they were waiting for the soda to be done. What happens is you come in, get your picture taken with Santa, go on the Brewery tour and while you are on that, they put the picture you took with Santa as the label of root beer bottles. It was fun watching all the kids and their reactions to Santa. There were a good number of criers. We did that for three weekends. The girls came down the second weekend. Emma wanted no part of the picture, so we have a case of root beer with just Lilly and Maddie. Then after the tour started it kind of clears out, so we thought that maybe she would do it if we all were in the picture. She did and the bottom picture is one that is now on 6 bottles of root beer.

The man who plays Santa is an employee of Sprecher and does such a great job. This past Sunday was the last one. There were 2 week old twins, then my favorite kid of all three Sundays: I think most of you have seen Elf, you know when they announce that Santa is coming and Buddy yells "Santa- I know him" this kid yelled Santa the exact same way and was shaking with excitement. I could not stop laughing. There were a few who brought their letters for Santa and then another favorite who brought a picture from a magazine of what he wanted.

We also Maddie's Christmas program thrown in there too. It was back on the 2nd of December. At Our Redeemer they break up the grades and do their Christmas programs as the Advent service in the evening. It is kind of nice so you don't have 500 people at one program and there is more opportunity for the kids to sing more and be involved more. She did great and sang out. The people next to her weren't squishing her this time, so she was able to do all the action.

So we are now about 10 days away from Christmas. We are going to Woodstock this weekend to celebrate Sammy's birthday. Chad is done with school this week and the girls have two days next week. Since he is off on Monday, he gets to be Maddie's helper. She is so excited that dad is going instead of me. The Keipers from Texas are coming and so we are getting together with them either Tuesday or Wednesday evening. Maddie cannot wait to see Isaac. She told me the other week that she is going to marry him. What a goof.

Also don't forget to watch Amy on A Home For The Holidays (it is an adoption story) that airs on Wednesday the 23rd on CBS. It is either a 7pm or 8pm thing. You would have to check your local listings.

Thanks for sticking with me and this long post. Here is a goofy picture of Lilly trying to get her whole fist in her mouth.

Monday, November 30, 2009


So if you take a look at the chart above you will notice the two red teeth on the bottom, which Lilly got about 2 months ago. She also has two other teeth that popped through about 2 weeks ago, no not the top two red ones, not even the top yellow ones, but yes the 2 top green ones. Just imagine this little person with hillbilly teeth. She knows how to use them, but she looks just way too funny. We are hoping that the top will start to fill in soon.

I try to get pictures, but she is not very cooperative. Maybe sometime soon, but for now just imagine her sitting outside a trailer, with her overalls on, yelling at her cat with her 4 teeth.

Gig 'Em

Here are a bunch of pictures of Lilly from just a random day where she was really happy and smiling the whole time. She was enjoying playing with my A & M hat. Maddie still knows and I'm sure Lilly knows that even though we may not live in Texas anymore, we still say Horns down- sorry Christian.

Saturday, November 21, 2009


So at the beginning of November Chad had the Teacher's Conference in the Dells. He went up on Sunday afternoon and then was home Monday night. Both him and the girls still had off on Tuesday, so we decided to go to the zoo for a couple hours in the morning. We had lots of fun and there weren't too many people. It was a brisk day, but it was sunny and the animals were pretty active. We actually even got some time to play on the playground- usually it is packed with kids and so you can't even climb, but they only had to share with about 5 others. So here is our outing to the zoo earlier this month in pictures.

Maddie sizing herself up by the baby gorilla.

Even being bundled up all day, Lilly had a great time navigating our day at the zoo.

Maddie and Emma in the small mammal house- we didn't go to the bat side of it.

The three of them watching some crazy mammal doing sommersaults and running back and forth

Maddie insisted she have her picture with the prairie dogs, but you can't even see them in the picture.
The giraffes were inside while we were there, I think they were cleaning up outside, so it was pretty cool to see them up close. Not as close as the Houston Zoo, but still pretty close.

We spent a good amount of time in the Big Cat House- here are the two Tiger cubs that were born in July. We had never seen them before.
Here is one cub with mom- we even watched the video of their vet check up and that is all that Emma could talk about for the rest of the afternoon.
The Lion just watching all the people at the Tiger Cub area. It was a little creepy the way he just was staring over at the cubs.

We had lots of fun and it is always fun to just spend a few hours at the zoo. Chad wonders how I can go as often as we sometimes do, but the girls love it. We can go different ways and see the same animals, but they love watching them and Maddie is getting into wanting someone to read about the animals and tell her about them. I look at it as a great chance for learning. Don't know if we will get to the zoo again until the spring, but you never know we will see.

Sunday, November 15, 2009


You may think that this post is going to be about Maddie, our rockstar, but really it is a Lilly update. Can you believe that Lilly is 6 months old?? She just had her 6 month check up on Friday. It was going pretty good until we were told she has another double ear infection and then they also gave her 4 shots. So let's just say she was not a happy camper. She is following in her sister's footsteps in the height and weight department.
Height: 27.5 inches- 94th percentile
Weight: 19lbs. 6oz- 95th percentile

So you may be wondering about the rocking, well Lilly does not want to be left out of anything her sisters are doing and so that includes being able to get around. She rolls everywhere and then usually ends up under a table, couch, or chair. She has started doing the rocking thing on all fours. She has no idea where to go from there, but give her a couple weeks and I think she will be on the move. She just wants to move and is in that I can't move yet, so I am just going to get mad phase. At least she loves her feet and so when she gets mad and is on her back, she just eats her feet.

Lilly got her two bottom teeth about 3 weeks ago, number 3 is out too. The funny thing is is that it isn't the top front one, it is off to the side. I think another one on the other side top is just about ready to come in too.

Lilly is starting to look more and more like her sisters. She is also starting to take on some of their mannerisms. It is scary sometimes, but knowing how different Maddie and Emma are, I think she will be okay.

We have been eating lots of different foods, apples, bananas, peaches, pears, green beans (yuck according to Lilly), peas, squash, and sweet potatoes. She loves to eat just like her sisters too.

This picture was taken tonight while she was drinking her dinner bottle. I have a picture just like this when Maddie was probably about 8 months old, drinking her bottle and legs up in the air.

Monday, November 02, 2009

What A Weekend

So we had quite a weekend, good thing the girls don't have school for the next two days and can recover. It started on Thursday. Maddie took a ride with grandma and grandpa to Iowa to pick up Nolan. Jana and Mike were moving out of their apartment and so with Nolan not there, they were able to clean it and get all the last things done a little quicker. While they were in Iowa, I actually attended a funeral for a guy I went to high school with. He was sick, but it still was a little sudden. There were a good number of people that I went to high school with there. That is the cool thing about going to a school like Martin Luther. You knew everyone and most likely you had more then one class with them.

Friday we still had school, so the girls went and Lilly got to hang out with Nolan. The rest of the afternoon the girls kept Nolan entertained, chased him, and made him do all his "tricks". Chad came home and I think we just all hung out, I can't even remember Friday since it seems so long ago. Jana and Mike got here late on Friday evening since they made a stop at Direct Buy in Schaumburg to order their cabinets.

Saturday we got ready for everyone to get here. We made a Wal-Mart run, got the house picked up, watched college football, and waited for everyone to get here. Once the Chapman's got here Chad decided that Maddie, Ben, Emma, Sam, Joel, and himself would go see Astroboy. So they got going and since it was just Nolan and Lilly; Jana, Amy, and myself went to see the Hangover at the Budget Cinema. Jana had not seen it before. When we got back the rest of the company was here. Uncle Kip, Aunt Susie, Jared, the Chicago Heffelfingers and everyone was ready to go trick or treating. The problem was that is was only 4:30 and it didn't start until 6:30. So we tried to get the kids to eat something before going and then it was time to get them dressed. It was cold, so we needed to layer under their costumes. So we took our 8 crayons out around grandma and grandpa's neighborhood.

I know that Crayola is spelled wrong, but Sam didn't want to switch with Ella. We also went in birth order with Lilly being the trademark. It is a little hard to see her since she is in the stoller.

Maddie the Orange A

Emma the Pink L

Lilly the brown Trademark

Nolan the Green A, but we all thought he looked a little bit like a gnome

We got back and everyone was not ready for bed, so we let the kids run around for a little while and then it was off to bed. The rest of us talked for a little while and then were all more then happy to set our clocks back one hour and get that extra hour of sleep.

Sunday morning Lilly didn't like the whole daylight savings and thought that 6am would be a good time to get up. She wasn't alone, Nolan was up and the girls were shortly after.

A little cousin love in the pack n' play.

We all went to church at grandma and grandpa's church, since it was grandma and grandpa's 40th wedding annviersary.

Grandma and Grandpa 40 years later- this picture is courtesy of Maddie the photographer

After church the Pownell's and Chapman's headed home. The rest of the day was spent relaxing and just resting up. We watched a little of the Packer/Vikings game, we played some games and even went outside for a little while. The girls were a little wound up, but everyone went to bed pretty much without a fight.

Lilly just hanging out on Sunday night.

The girls are off school and I don't know who is more disappointed, them or me. Now that it is 6:15, I would say me. Let's just say that school does Maddie good. Chad is on his way home from the Dells (Teachers Conference). So tomorrow everyone will be home, maybe we will do something fun.

Hopefully they don't all decide that 6am would be a good time to wake up like this morning. Good thing everyone took a nap this afternoon.

Phew!!! What a weekend and I am glad that it is over. I am tired and now that the Holidays are coming, the weekends may all be like that.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Pumpkin Farm Take 3

Okay so this is our third trip to the pumpkin farm. This time we met some college friends and kids at Swan's pumpkin farm in Franksville. We were a little worried that it would just be too muddy to go, but we took the chance on Saturday afternoon. It WAS muddy,but all of us with our trusty boots, we did alright and didn't come away with too much of a mess. Nick and Ashley came with their son Eli and daughter Addie. Ryan and Kate came with their daughter Michaela, I didn't get any pics of her since she is just about a month old and spent the whole time in the snugglie. We had a great time and it turned out to be a okay day weather wise. The kids didn't want to leave, but we promised them we would get together again soon. So here is the pumpkin farm in pictures.

Emma riding the train- you can sort of see Eli sitting next to her.
There is Eli, he wasn't so sure about riding with Emma, but she did let him drive.

Maddie also took a ride on the train, but was too cool to sit by Emma and Eli.

Maddie and dad took a walk through the kiddie Corn Maze, she did a pretty good job and didn't get lost.Here she is at the end of it- what a big girl.

After the train riding, we fed a few goats and sheep. Emma actually held the food and let them eat out of her hand.

Maddie and Emma, the pirate and fair maiden.

Emma posing for Kate (who was taking the pictures)

Lilly spent most of the afternoon in the snugglie, but at least it was warm in there.

Maddie and Emma posing for Kate.

Emma really enjoying her cookies, she ate them both at the same time.

Maddie, Eli, and Emma measuring up.