Saturday, December 26, 2009

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Reina's 1st Christmas! She is 11, almost 12 months in these pictures. She can stand well and has taken 5 steps to Mama or Dada. Reina also tries really hard to copy words that you say. She does great with the words: baby, Mama, Dada, and many consonants that begin words such as zipper, stars, monkey, and bunny. And for bird she says "Ttt."

p.s. Paul's beard is only TEMPORARY. Long story but it's his turn to have the beard for a family picture which will be posted at a later date.

What a BIG girl standing all by herself! She is at Papa Will and Mummi's house where she spends a lot of time. I think I'll post a video of some of her favorite things to do at their house :)

Saturday, December 5, 2009

The Biggest Binki Ever!

Reina cracks us up daily, but this incident was picture worthy. Below you see a binki and a rubber octopus bath toy. Reina hasn't used a pacifier for months but she discovered the biggest binki ever and couldn't resist!

Here she is with some other silly faces:)

She looks like Grandpa Guinn in this picture when he is concentrating on a task (at least the tongue looks like him).

And below she looks just like a picture of her uncle Matt when he was about her age. Although uncle Matt is a twin to daddy so I guess it's in the genes.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Candy, Carving, and Coeur d'Alene!

We just love Halloween! I guess I'm speaking for the family, but Paul and Reina seemed to enjoy dressing up and getting free candy as well. This year our costume theme was somewhat "Lord of the Rings-ish". Reina was a fairy princess, Paul a Knight (next time I promise his costume will be homemade and much cooler), and me a wood elf. It's hard to tell from the pictures but I had elf ears as well. I was pleased with myself in that I sewed/put together most of my costume and also made Reina a cloak to go over her dress thanks to verbal instruction from my mother-in-law. We took a quick 6-hour trip to my brother's house in Coeur d'Alene to enjoy the picturesque fall town scene that thrives there. The little shops on Main street all gather and hand out candy to the trick-or-treaters at closing time, and then all of the houses, which are well-kept Craftsman and Victorian style designs are decorated for fall fun.

Teem (pirate), Emily (witch), Miia (unicorn), Kaija (witch), Luukas (spidy-man)

My brother Teem created this carnivorous man, and Paul created the victim!

Friday, October 2, 2009

Favorite Things!

Reina's Favorites at 8 months:

Food: Raspberries (fresh), peaches cut up (but those slippery buggers can also make her a little impatient), cereal puffs, and bits of things found off the carpet. If I come to sweep her mouth to see what garbage she found she quickly clamps her jaw shut so I can't steal it from her. I've been making my own baby food to add protein in her diet and she loves it just as much as everything else. I haven't discovered anything she doesn't like...even fish! You can freeze homemade baby food by putting it in a muffin tin and stick it in freezer until hard, then let them thaw a few minutes on the counter until you can pop out each individual serving size of food. I store in a ziploc in the freezer and take a serving out as need be. My sister Sanni told me this inventive idea.

To Do: Her new thing now is to clap her hands all by herself, crawl EVERYWHERE (right now she is pulling daddy's Robert Jordan books off the book shelf). And just this week Grandma Guinn and daddy taught her to pull herself up from sitting position to standing! You go girl! Since Grandma Guinn had surgery and is in a foot cast, she likes to stand up to Grandma's recliner and squak to get her attention. Reina still loves peek-a-boo and will play it with herself if she finds a shirt, a pajama, anything made from cloth. She loves it when we sing and dance with her. Some of her favorite songs are: "You are My Sunshine", the Finnish "rowing" song, "Bimbala Bima" (also Finnish), and "Jesus Wants Me for a Sunbeam." Reina also loves to babble...she actually says "mama" like 25 times a day, especially when she wants something.

Funny things she loves: She still likes to head-bang (literally), something she picked up at 5 months. The past month or so she has been closing her eyes really you do when someone splashes water. For some reason it looks so funny on a baby. She notices that we laugh so she'll do it more and more. I'll try my darndest to get a picture of this but she gives no warning. She is very flexible and often gets herself into splits (well, splits like an L) and prefers to sit side-saddle (legs dangling to one side like riding a horse). She's hilarious when she's cocking her head to one side while observing people.

Daddy's Favorites at 28 years: (all answers are what Mommy believes are Daddy's favorites...he's not home)

Food: Red Robin Whiskey River Barbecue Chicken Burger and Bottomless Fries, Burger King Whopper (although rarely gets), Tillamook's Udderly Chocolate Ice Cream, any diet soda, Sweet Tomatoes salad that he creates along with their clam chowder, and my homemade hamburgers. (These are favorites, not staples...except for the ice-cream. We're trying to cut back on that.)

To Do: Spending free-time with mommy and Reina, especially running trails with me while Reina's in the jogging stroller. He also likes to read sci-fi/fantasy books (currently reading Jim Butcher novels), listen to talk radio (Glenn Beck, Laura Ingram), play Guitar Hero/Rock Band with whoever will play (usually Steve his bro, my bro Teem, and maybe even Mommy).

Funny things Daddy loves: Daddy loves to watch literal version videos on Youtube over and over (in fact, one of the songs was on the radio and he knew 90% of the words to the literal version song)! Likes to check-out his "nerdsite" websites everyday i.e. Forgeworld, Bell of Lost Souls, Blue Table Painting...just to name a few and dreams of days where he can paint and play Warhammer...which doesn't happen. And also likes to watch Mommy be silly with Reina.

Mommy's Favorites at 28 years:

Food: Pumpkin pie with whip cream (a whole pie), beans in any form (not green beans), Tillamook's Black Cherry Vanilla ice cream, chocolate chips, salt and pepper popcorn, blueberries, any kind of soup, and lately I've been really craving Mongolian Grill.

To Do: Anything with Daddy and Reina together which may include trail running, camping and recently picking out Halloween costumes together. I like going to Zumba or Quad step at the gym (those that are bored to workout should really check out Zumba), going to Spanky's (a local consignment store where I can take my clothes in and get store credit to buy Reina clothes, or myself)! I like to take pictures and would love to own a great camera some day soon! Of course I love to ballroom dance but since I still nurse Reina it's been on hold for a while (dancing time is Reina's needy time).

Funny things Mommy loves: Giving Reina a bath (just so I can see her splash in the water with that naked bum), watching "America's Next Top Model" (completely lame I know, but sinfully addicting), picking up things I find for my home that doesn't exist, playing Madlibs with my family and using very juvenile words.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Baby You Can Drive My Car...

... because you got my keys!

Reina is 8 months and is the awesome-est baby evah! -Paul

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Summer Dayz

It is officially September so I decided to fill everyone in on what we've been up to this past summer.

We just got back from a quick trip to the Oregon coast. We stopped at the Tillamook Cheese Factory (mmm...cheese curds), waded in the river, and went to beautiful Oceanside beach. The view was spectacular, but the whipping sand forced us to leave the ocean sooner than we would have liked. Luckily we retreated back to our friend's beach house where we cozied up and watched "Confessions of a Shopaholic."

My oldest sister Tarja and her three children Reagan, Kamryn, and Ethan were visiting from California for six weeks so we've taken advantage of this treat and done some fun things. My brother Teem and his family also spent about two weeks with us. Over the 4th of July we went camping up North at Riffe Lake. We couldn't have asked for better weather. Teem brought his new boat for tubing and fishing. We watched a fantastic fireworks show right at the campground since the owner's brother lives next door and does a show every year with an actual flamethrower. All the kids loved it...but I think the firewworks startled Reina a bit so we didn't keep her out too long. This was Reina's first camping trip and she did great! But of course she always does. The only thing we were worried about was sleeping in a new and unfamiliar place, but she did just as good as at home. We are glad she is so adaptive to the environment. (hmmm, now I sound like a biology teacher). We didn't have a sleeping bag for her so I had the idea to use her too big snowsuit as her sleeping bag...yes, you can use this idea!

I think Tarja and her family are head-over-heels in love with Reina. Her cousins just can't resist keeping their hands off of her; those of you who know me know how I am about hands and germs. Anywhoo, we all have had our fair share of being sick this summer. It's been rotating from Paul, to Reina, to me, and back and forth. I heard on the news that if you have had fever and flu-like symptoms this summer that it is probably the swine flu. If that's the case, then we will be immune to it this fall! So I'm a little behind on getting Reina's 6 month shots since she has been sick off and on.

We took our annual trip to Loon Lake with all of my (Aliisa's) family. We of course did the usual boating, fishing, relaxing, and taking family photos. This was Paul and my first time wakeboarding. Paul got up on his first attempt and did great! I, however, only lasted a couple of seconds up then didn't know how to stay year right? Tubing was a lot of fun though because both of my sisters and I rode at the same time for 30 minutes while my brother tried to throw us off; of course I was his only success at being flipped off the tube. I could hear everyone laugh as they zoomed past me STILL on the tube. I do have a rug burn on my hand to prove how hard I was holding on. Although this has been a super-busy summer, we are glad that we have some great memories to look back on with family. We just love our family, the BIG and the small!

P.S. Here are some family pictures my sister Sanni took. She did a great job as usual, and Reina looks especially cute even though she was very you can tell by one particular photo.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Memorial Weekend at Loon Lake

We just got back from a nice, long Memorial weekend at Loon Lake. Our family (Aliisa's side) stays at a family friend's lake house usually once every summer, but we were able to squeeze an early stay there over the holiday. The weather was excellent with high 70's/low 80's for this time of year so that we were able to do some boating, swimming, fishing, and water sports. Last summer my sister Sanni, sister-in-law Emily, and I were all pregnant...and this time there were 3 little girls lounging in the sun in their little sun hats and swimsuits- Heleena, Miia and Reina! We are excited to see these three cousins grow up and play together whenever we get together.

Paul finally got his first fishing license and caught the first catch of the bunch...a large-mouth bass and while trolling he caught a kokane salmon. My brother Teem has become quite the fisherman and was able to give Paul some guidance. The funny thing is that the guys were pulled over by the fishing police and Paul didn't have his fishing license on him...they luckily let him go back and get it. Whew! The guys went turkey hunting one day but didn't even see a turkey...but I'm sure they will do it again in the fall when the season is better for it. They weren't too bummed since they still did some shooting anyway.

The water was still a bit cold since it freezes over in the winter and hasn't had time for the sun to warm it, so the only brave souls to do water sports were Teem and August when we go again I am going to try skiing and wake-boarding for the first time! We are looking forward to going again and are so grateful for our kind friends loaning their house. Also thanks to Emily and Teem for all they have done to make this possible for us...we really appreciate it!

Friday, May 1, 2009

Reina Rolling Over... Or is it Falling?

Reina is 3 1/2 months old here. She has never had any trouble keeping her head up during "tummy time", she just doesn't like it! So to avoid this treacherous event she proceeded to flop herself over. We just had to capture this moment again and again...and again.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Beautiful Blessing

Look at that dress! I was so happy that the design worked out perfect for Reina's blessing dress. I wanted just a hint of pink throughout the dress; antique-like that can never get "out-dated". It came out perfect! Grandma Guinn has such great sewing skills! Although she did say that this was more difficult to make than her daughter's wedding dress. We're grateful for all the effort and it's something that will always be special for our girls.

Aunt Sanni helped take these pictures of Reina. She is exactly 7 weeks in these photos. She was getting hungry (of course) during her photo shoot, so we are lucky to have gotten some good pictures!

Reina, Our Little Sweet-a Pie

This is a video of Reina taken at about nine weeks old. As you can see, she loves to smile. She had been smiling and playing for about ten minutes before we started videoing, so she gets a little tired near the end. But she sure is sweet.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

How Reina Came into this World

So I finally am trying to get back to our blog. I'm not the best at keeping up with a "so-called journal" but I do enjoy reading others and once I do complete a blog entry I enjoy reading our family's accomplishments. So this is one of my goals: to stay up-to-date with this...(crossing fingers).
Reina Suvi Guinn is the newest addition to our family. She was born on January 8th, 2009 at 6:07 pm weighting 9 lb. 1 oz. Yes, a VERY big girl! I knew when I would be going into labor since I was to be induced on Thursday, January 8th. The night before (Wednesday) I was at the gym doing a "light" workout on the elliptical. An older gentlemen was impressed to see me there so late in my pregnancy...I let him know I was going to have a baby tomorrow! Following my shower that Wednesday evening after the gym, my husband Paul and I went to clean an office building that we take care of twice a week (once during the weekend and on Wednesday night...which it was the day before I was going to have a baby). That night I of course did not sleep much with thoughts of: "This is the last night it is just Paul and me." "Next time I sleep in this bed there is going to be a baby sleeping between us." "Uh oh, I have been anticipating this for 9 months and now it is here and I am not ready." "Yeah, I am ready to be a mommy, but oh the pain tomorrow...what if I can't take it?" "Is it possible that I am weaker than other women and will pass out?" "That's impossible, you went to the gym and cleaned the night before you delivered...hmmmm, maybe not the best idea!" "Woohoo! It's finally here!" "What's she going to look like?" Okay, so you get the point! Fear; excitement; all tangled into my thoughts.

They were going to call me sometime that morning when they had an "opening" for me to come. Usually when it comes to doctors and appointments everything runs late so I expected a call NO earlier than 10am. Much to my surprise they called at 7:20am. They question, "Is this Aliisa?" With a surprisingly restful 5 hours of sleep I responded, "Yes". They ask, "Are you ready to have a baby today?" What kind of a question is that? I felt like I was at a Bed and Breakfast and they were calling my room asking if I would like an omelet or scrambled eggs. So I respond with an embarrassed red face, "Sure." So of course they want me to quickly hop in the car and already be there before I even have gotten off the phone with them. My husband Paul lovingly makes me an omelet (hmmm....I just realized the reality of my breakfast order). I quickly put my hair in a bun, knowing that I won't want ANY distractions later today and dash a little blush and lip gloss on my face. (I've been told by "What Not to Wear" that the quickest way to look fresh is a little blush.)
We arrive at the hospital around 8:15 with all the necessities in discover those "necessities" that they tell you to bring were never used. They brought us (Paul and me) to a nice, big, room where you deliver and sleep all in one. We actually had a great view of the secluded trees and shrubs in the center of the hospital courtyard. I didn't get hooked up to the Petocin (which speeds up contractions) until 9:30. I was already dilated to 3-31/2 for the last 3 weeks and had been having minor contractions for a while now...but nothing painful whatsoever. The Petocin didn't really do anything so my doctor came in to break my water. Dr. Virgin came in a little after 11am in between delivering another lady at a different hospital. I couldn't believe how easy she just came in, put a long tube in me (it looked like one of those squeezy things you use to suck the juice out of a turkey), and suddenly I began to leak. At this point I began to feel like I was a turkey who was done and ready to be carved. My hours of baking were up ( 9 months), my turkey timer had official popped (belly button), and the stuffing was beginning to leak (water broke). Once my water broke, that's when I actually started feeling contractions. The first hour of contractions felt like bad gas or diarrhea pain. The second hour I really started to have major contractions and had to change positions so they made a warm bath for me. Paul helped out a lot during those contractions by pressing my hips together during the minute long contractions. The only thing that kept me from the horrible pain was the idea that the pain was somehow "lessened" with squeezing my hips together. The "minute" between contractions of course seemed to last only a few seconds compared to the "minute" long contractions. After the second hour of real contractions in the tub I had to change positions because the pain was getting to be too much. My nurse kept asking what my pain level was. Earlier I had told her I would get an epidural when it was at an 8. At this point I wanted to say 8 but still forced myself to stick with it a little longer (since an epidural tends to delay dilation) so I said 6. The third hour of contractions was leaning over the bed on a medicine ball and realizing what an overcoming amount of pain the body goes through to deliver. At the end of this third hour I finally said it was time for an epidural. My pain was definitely a firm 8. Relief. Immediate relief with the epidural. Wow, why didn't I do this earlier? Now I can't feel a thing and I can actually fall asleep. I attempted to sleep for an hour or so. My mom and sister Sanni arrived at this time after the epidural was completed when all was peaceful. At this time Paul finally got to leave and get something to eat while I rested. After three hours of the epidural I began pushing a little after 5pm. My doctor was not there yet and I was afraid I would deliver before she got there. But luckily she got there the last 10 minutes of my delivery. I pushed for 53 minutes. Pushing made me VERY sleepy so in between each set of pushes I had to breath through an oxygen mask. It was my only relief. If I did not have that oxygen mask I think I would have passed out. My eyelids were drooping and the only thing keeping me from going to sleep was the oxygen mask and bites of jello in between pushing. My mom ordered that I get to eat. She was right, I would have passed out without the energy from the jello. Because of the epidural I could feel the contractions but couldn't really feel if I was actually pushing. So they brought a mirror that showed the crown of the baby. That mirror really helped me and gave me the effort to really push and know that my pushing was actually accomplishing something. Soon after the mirror arrived I was able to push until out popped Reina with her big, round, cheeks and big eyes.

Everything with the labor and delivery went great! The nurses kept commenting at how easy of a patient I was. I surprisingly handled the pain much better than I expected. No screaming, no crying; just moaning.

Reina was born with chubby little cheeks and eyes wide open taking in this new world. We like to think that the veil wasn't completely closed and that she was welcomed with angels at her side comforting her with this new life. Reina just kept looking and looking at her mommy those first minutes of being born. I think she was told that I would be her mommy and would be taking care of her. Apparently after she was born when they brought her to me I said "This is my baby? I have a baby? I have a baby!"
And now she is here and with us. We are blessed to have such a healthy and wonderful little girl. She is our little miracle and blessing and hope that she will always feel blessed to have us as her parents. My favorite thing in the whole world now is laying in bed with daddy and baby Reina sleeping between us.