People's Republic of Zollner

So the world DOES in fact revolve around Madeline Jane and Karis Anne Zollner!

Sunday, April 30, 2006

Welcome Beautiful Laura Ann

Miss Laura Anne Kelly arrived Friday evening! We went to go see her today and she is absolutely precious. I love newborn babies so much, it was wonderful to hold her and soak in all her newborn wonderfulness..... makes me want another one! Maddy seemed like a great big huge child compared to her, she has come a long way in almost 8 months. Laura, who will be called Lulu, is almost exactly the same size Maddy was when she was born. Her mama Mary is doing well, recovering and resting after an intense natural labor! Congratulations Mary and Gannon, she is beautiful!

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Krista's Baby Shower

Sue Wills and I hosted a shower for my wonderful friend Krista Harris this morning. She and her husband Chad are expecting their little princess Alayna in June... just a few short weeks away! Doesn't she look fabulous? I think she is a truly beautiful pregnant woman, glowing with life and love from inside out. Krista and I met at a bible study when I was brand new pregnant with Maddy (then just known as Cletus the Fetus). She commiserated with me about morning (or rather, all day)sickness... we were instant friends. Alayna's big brother Gavin is totally adorable and my very favorite 3 1/2 year old! Krista received many wonderful presents in anticipation for her little is so fun to see all the pink and purple tiny newborn things... it brings back memories of when Maddy was itty bitty. It seems like just yesterday she was in gowns and those little mittens so she wouldn't be able to scratch herself.... happy sigh... anyway, it was a busy shower with lots of kids running around. And add in some serious rolling/crawling on Maddy's part. So happy shower to you Krista, I'm so honored to be part of your life!

29,999 New Neighbors

Last weekend we accompanied my mom Linda down to Philomath to set up her beehives. She started two hives with two different varieties of honeybees. She also has mason bees, however they live in small boxes with holes drilled in them that are nailed to a wall. They do not sting, they are simply efficient pollinators that are nice to have around. Micah, our dog, came along for one last romp with Kona, my brother and sister in law's German Shepherd, who is staying with my parents until they get settled in Colorado. Micah and Kona absolutely ADORE each other, they play and run and jump and bark and have a blast until they both collapse exhausted.

On the way down we stopped to see my friend Toni and her adorable new baby boy Aidan. He is one handsome little man! But, while we were there Kona got a bit too excited on her way into the backyard and totally knocked me flat. 65 pounds of muscle mid-jump will do that to a person! At first I couldn't move my knee and was worried I had blown it out, but it is doing better now. But the shoulder I landed on could use some TLC still.... so there I was flat on my back unable to get up and my Mom and Toni were trying to manage the dogs who were now loose and going bezerk, the sleeping newborn, 7 1/2 month old Maddy, and 2 year old Kendra. Man do I know how to make an entrance!! Toni was very gracious and just took it all in stride, but I felt awful to create all this chaos for her. Just what every new mom needs! Our journey south continued after much ice and ibuprofen and we started the next day fresh and ready to go.... Maddy and I stayed way back and acted as photographers as Grandma Linda donned her bee suit and went to work. We decided to leave the dogs in the house so they wouldn't run apeshit through the hives and destroy all her hard work, not to mention get stung. 30,000 bees can pack quite a punch!After my Mom got the bees into their new homes we headed back to the house to let the dogs out, or so we thought.... those dumb dogs had actually managed to flip the deadbolt and lock us out of the house.... no keys, no phones, just me, Maddy, my Momand 30,000 of our closest friends. GREAT! We tried to break in but apparently we aren't quite as crafty as we would like to think. Luckily, my Mom remembered that one of the back windows didn't have a lock and managed to jimmy her way through with her hive tool. That is a funny mental image: my Mom climbing through a back window in her beesuit. The next morning we noticed that the bees had started to congregate rather tightly on the front of the Italian hive (they tend to be a more aggressive breed). This is not typical behavior and we became concerned as they slowly started to envelope the entire hive, a swarm-like behavior. Not good. But all the resource books assured us that bees rarely will swarm from a new hive. I made the brilliant suggestion that maybe they were just sunning themselves, but the innate beekeeper wisdom deep within my Mom told her otherwise. And sure enough a few minutes later they were up and gone. All 15,000 of them. My Mom yelled "You ungrateful bastards!! You didn't even give it 24 hours! I drove you all the way from frickin' Seattle and worried about you and gave you a beautiful new home and you frickin' swarm on me!!" I had to laugh, but we had a sinking feeling: so where did they go? The super helpful books (that had previously dismissed the idea of swarming so quickly) said they don't go more than 1,000 feet to find a temporary resting place until a new home can be scouted for. We crept around the property and couldn't find them. You wouldn't think 15,000 clustered bees would be that hard to find, but our hunt yielded no swarm..... however, we could sure hear them. The bee hum was impressive to say the least. Not too much later a man was walking down the road and stopped to ask for directions. We pointed him down the road and he went on his way. But not one minute later he was back and exclaimed "There are hundreds of yellow jackets all over the road!" With glee we shouted, "where where show us show us" practically jumping up and down. He must have thought we were possessed or something. Sure enough, they had landed just up the road, not 30 feet behind the ill-fated hive, amidst a thorny nasty patch of impossibly hard to get through blackberry brambles. Unbelievably though a beekeeping neighbor was brave enough to wade through the brambles, cut down the swarm, capture it in a box, and put them back in the hive which he made some adjustments to in order to prevent another exodus. WHEW! What a crazy day! All the bees tucked safely away in their new homes with only one sting resulting in 29,999 new neighbors at our country estate.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

In the News

Breastfeeding mamas unite to make positive change in our society! Hurrah!

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Maddy's First Easter

Here is Maddy on Easter Sunday.... Check out her fabulous faux fur coat ~ thanks for all the great clothes Toni! We had a nice day, we went to church and then headed down to Mt. Angel to see Jason's family. Uncle Michael was there along with Jenny, Brad, Abby and yet-to-be-named-Baby-Girl Foster, Gigi and Gpa Vandehey, Shrock Family, Warner Family, Pettit Family and Grammy and Grandpa Zollner. The second picture is Maddy's great grandparents, Gigi and Gpa. Tons of great food and family, what could be better?

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Breastfeeding in Public

Gasp! I know, I know: I am going to talk about breastfeeding in PUBLIC! Most of my friends and family will say "You go girl!" and some others will be shocked and dismayed at this post. The reason that I am writing this is because a woman was recently asked by a store manager to cover up or go to the restroom while nursing her child at a local grocery store (Fred Meyer). This astounds me. Every day I see mothers nursing their babies and I have absolutely no reaction to it. Except maybe to want to offer her a pillow or get her some water to drink. I can not for the life of me understand how our culture can be so backwards about so basic an issue as feeding our babies in the most natural, convenient, healthiest and efficient method available. I think it is about time we started to embrace the fact that breasts can and should be used for something other than holding up Britney Spears' bikini top. As a breastfeeding mother I think it is ridiculous to feel pressure to force my child to eat on the toilet or be distracted by having a hot blanket over her face. I work very hard to treat Maddy as I would want to be treated and neither of those options would appeal to me. I will excuse myself to go somewhere private if that option is available and I know that someone I am around may be uncomfortable with breastfeeding. Respect, discretion and modesty are key of course. But, if done discreetly, very very very very little skin shows while nursing. Someday I hope that nursing in public will be as commonplace as feeding a child from a bottle filled with chemicals, oh excuse me, I meant to say formula. I believe that as a society we need to embrace and support a mother's right to feed her baby with a timely response to that child's hunger. Would you make your toddler wait until you get out to the car to give him a carrot stick? Or make him go into the bathroom stall before you feel comfortable offering him a snack when you are in a public place? I think not. You would simply feed your hungry child. And since breastfeeding is so super fantastically perfectly made for your baby and is pre-mixed at the perfect temperature straight from the source at a moment's notice, it is a NO BRAINER to me that breastfeeding in public makes for happy mamas and healthy (quiet) babies.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Maddy's Pukey Pesach

Thursday Maddy and I traveled by train to Seattle to celebrate Pesach (Passover) with my family. We decided to go at the last minute to say good-bye to Brian (my brother) before he moves to Colorado for a new sales position with Novo Coffee. He has been contemplating the move for a while, but it has all fallen into place rather quickly. Lesley will join him in a few months after she finishes up a project at her current job, finds a new position and gets their household ready to move. They'll be living in the Denver area: we wish them prosperity and happiness in their new home!

Brian and Lesley hosted a wonderful Seder meal at their home.... there was much laughing and drinking and celebrating with good friends and food and family. Lesley cooks a mean Matzah Ball! The traditions for Passover are really beautiful and wonderfully full of hope in God's protection and promises. Each food has significance from the history of the Israelite people and their enslavement and subsequent exodus to freedom. Maddy was captivated by all the rowdiness and excitement. She was passed around and bounced and stayed up waaaayyy past her bedtime because, hey, who can sleep through a Zielinski party? But at 10:30pm she decided enough was enough and vomited all over mommy. NASTY! So I took her hint that she had been totally overstimulated, got her cleaned up (thanks for the extra outfit Cara!) and Grandma and I headed home with our little bundle. It does NOT pay off to pack lightly when traveling because by now she had blown through her normal outfit, the spare and her jammies not to mention the only outfit that I had to wear. All in my attempts to avoid a suitcase on the train. Sigh. Then Mt. Maddy blew again in the car - sorry about your upholstery Grandma! So now not only am I stinky and tired, but you can add worried to my list of emptions. I am a champion gold medal worrier and I was in overdrive now...Why was Maddy sick?? I had myself convinced that she was going to vomit, aspirate and die at any second. It continued through most of the night but we managed to get a little sleep in between bouts. I just snuggled her on her side next to me and that seemed to comfort her. Poor little gal, she was really having a hard time with it, though... Today we hitched a ride back down south with Grandma and Grandpa on their way to their Philomath property. What a whirlwind adventure for all of us, let's hope this bug passes quickly and soon Maddy is back to her sunny sweet self.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Today I had one of those "I've got my self together oh no wait just kidding I don't have any clue what I am doing" moments. Maddy was feeling generous and we slept in until 8:30. That in itself was a reason to declare the entire day as fabulous!! So we got up, nursed, got dressed, Maddy practiced rocking on all fours while I attempted to regain control over my rat's nest of hair (it didn't turn out so well but I was still high from the extra sleep and didn't care -- still don't, but I digress) and headed out the door to the library for storytime. Maddy loves to watch the other babies and completely enjoys the songs, dances, games and toys. Natalie the librarian brings out a huge bin of amazing toys for the babies and they descend upon it faster than you can even imagine. And within seconds it looks like a bomb has gone off in the room. So we are happily playing and then I look down and realize that I am wearing one brown boot and one black boot!! ZollNERD! I start cracking up and the other moms (and dads too) join in and tell me of the fifty-eight thousand brainless things they have all done this past week too. I so love watching the babies who are just a few months older than Maddy - it is crazy to think that soon the rocking will become crawling will become walking will become talking will become a child and not our little newborn baby anymore. Bittersweet in the most wonderful way.... and the good thing is that on this journey I have learned that I can have greasy hair and mismatched shoes and still be the happiest (if no longer the most organized) mom around.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Here is Maddy hanging out in her sling a few weeks ago. They are super versatile for a mom and baby on the go or having bonding time at home. We also enjoy using our Moby Wrap which came in very handy at the airport for hands free traveling while holding baby close. Maddy highly recommends both!

Saturday, April 08, 2006

I am starting this blog as a way to keep people updated on the ins and outs of the Zollner family. I hope to update is about once a week and have lots of pictures posted of Maddy as she grows and changes. And maybe I'll even throw in a few of me and Jason since every once in a while people wonder how we are doing too.....

Last week we were able to travel to Los Angeles, CA to visit family. Maddy and I were accompanied by Grandma Linda and Grandpa David. We stayed with my great Aunt Jeanne at her condo in Northridge. It was a wonderful time catching up with my mom's side of the family that live in that area. She even got to meet her cousin Isis who was born just 3 days earlier. What a beauty!! It was delightful to put them next to each other because she has beautiful chocolate colored skin and Maddy is so fair. We make them good in our family!! We visited Universal Studios, the Reagan Library and enjoyed a beautiful day of driving to the beaches, including Malibu where Maddy could dig her toes in the sand and dance on a surfboard. Jason had to stay home to work and make the bacon, but we missed him! Especially when Maddy had her fist huge blowout at the Burbank airport and again at Universal Studios! Those up the back and out the collar ones totally amaze me, where does it all come from??? And how does she know to do it only in a crowded public place with limited access to a changing area? People kept warning me of the impending blowout and now I am a proud member of the club. She did great on the planes and revelled in all the attention she received from the other travellers, she does create quite a stir wherever we go (which of course tickles me pink!).