I'm sure that the simple fact that I now spend my days chasing around a 2-year-old while feeding and diapering a 3-week-old is enough to explain my 2-week absence from the blog, but there are actually other reasons. :) We have been keeping quite busy here in chilly Indianapolis.
While the excessive snow in Peoria two weekends ago prevented my dad and stepmom from coming over for a visit, my college sister braved the weather and came anyway. Kristin arrived last Saturday and settled in for a good visit. She was infinitely helpful, getting up in the night with Shaylee so that Ben and I could sleep and watching the girls for me during the day so that I could run some much-needed errands.
One of Kristin's lifelong friends, Dani, drove over from Champaign on Sunday afternoon so that they could visit with another high school friend, Katie, who now lives here in Indy. Kristin and Dani spent one night here and one at Katie's, and perhaps more importantly, kept me conscious and amused during late-night Shay feedings. When Dani departed for Peoria on Tuesday, Kristin stayed here, and Dad and Diane came over on Wednesday to make up for their cancelled visit.
We had an excellent visit with all of them, including an ample meal of what we hear is "Indy's best Chinese food" and an early Christmas celebration. This was Dad and Diane's first time to meet the baby, and we had a hard time prying Shay out of Grandma's arms so they could head home on Thursday afternoon! Kristin departed with them, and we were left with a short break with no houseguests.
On Friday night, we attended Bryn's friend Christopher's second birthday party at Chuck E. Cheese. It was a little challenging to keep an eye on Bryn as she ran excitedly from game to game while also attending to Shay, who wanted nothing but to sleep in her carseat, but we luckily had many friends present who were willing to help. It was great to get caught up with friends, and Bryn had a fabulous time on all the rides, as well as reveling in pizza and cake.
Later that night, Ben's mom, dad, sister, and grandma arrived to spend the weekend. We celebrated and opened Christmas presents on Saturday morning. Bryn was absolutely enthralled with every gift she received, and it was hard to convince her to stop playing for long enough to open the rest of her gifts! Shaylee slept through most of the proceedings in her great-grandma's arms. After naps, we went out to Sears to have portraits done of the girls and their grandparents. Then dinner out, then home to put the girls to bed. Ben and Jill stayed up late playing with Jill's Wii, and Ben and I were able to receive our second night of good sleep in a row, due to the noctural habits of Nurse Jill, who took over Shay duty for the night.
Sunday held church, then the departure of Ben's family. We spent the afternoon next door, celebrating our neighbor Leleia's third birthday. Definitely a few busy weeks, full of visitors, presents, and parties for Bryn. I think she's going to be pretty bored with me once the new year arrives and all the excitement ends!