Look at those beach birds!

It’s hard to believe summer is coming to an end and it feels weird to say it’s September (happy birthday Sam!). We probably all say that every year, but we really do have a pretty short summer compared to, you know, warm states. This was definitely a fun summer, one of many firsts. The biggest highlight was our first family vacation – we went to Silver Beach in July. More about that in a bit. Other firsts include itIMG_3766 (2) was our first summer having two mobile kids instead of one; first Chuck E. Cheese birthday party (Hannah turned 4); Hannah’s first amusement park visit; our first vacation without the kids (technically that was April though); Hannah’s first helicopter ride; I’m sure there are more.

What I was planning to focus on is the first family vacation. First, from Hannah’s perspective. Then I’ll write a post from Logan’s.

Hannah is at an incredibly fun, cute, challenging, and frustrating age. She’s such a beautifulfun-loving, goofy, artistic, energetic ball of fire. But sometimes that turns into a wildfire and the defiant, moody, grumpy Hannah comes out to play. Four out of five times I can find a way to break that mood by getting her to laugh and smile. But there’s often times when I’m either not having it or she’s holding out and is just incredibly irrational. Such is life with a
daughter I’m told (sorry ladies, that’s just what I’m told!).

So vacation from Hannah’s perspective was a blast. There were some moments of frustration, but for the most part she was super well behaved and had the time of her life. She got to swim in a beautiful, clean, giant lake. Play on the biggest beach she’d ever seen. Play in the biggest splash pad she’d ever seen. Ride a carousel a dozen times. Explore a couple of children’s museums. Sleep in her oIMG_3806 (1)wn big hotel bed. Color and draw. And eat lots of ice cream and other treats.

Something we thought was pretty cute and funny was when Hannah saw some seagulls
she said “what are those?” We told her and she said in her cute high pitched voice, “noooo, those are beach birds!” So now anytime she sees as seagull it’s a beach bird.

If you read my last post on here you know Hannah loves art, “projecks,” drawing, crafts, etc. and she still absolutely does. She also has quite the imagination and flair for the dramatic so we’re thinking she might enjoy some kids drama classes. Of course, we love sports and want her to be active in them IMG_3894 (1)too, and her favorite by far is gymnastics. She also has enjoyed soccer and I’m pretty excited to see if she likes tee ball next year.

We did find out this summer that Hannah loves heights, roller coasters, or pretty much any kind of thrill ride. She got to ride in a helicopter at the Sweet Aviation open house, here’s the video. She sang and smiled the entire time. We also went to Paige’s Crossing and we’re sort of doomed now if we go back because we had unlimited rides, which resulted in riding the roller coaster approximately 25 times, and I’m not exaggerating. Here’s a video of that, I believe it was our 3rd run. There were 20+ more and she loved it the final time as much as the first.

That’s pretty much all that’s new with Hannah right now. She still eats like 5 things so that’s a bit problematic at times. We’re probably as much to blame for that as anything because we let it slideIMG_3506, but she is getting better at trying new things at least one or two bites at a time
.

Oh and we got a crazy ass dog. His name is Chance and he is really good most of the time. But I’m sure I’ll share some stories down the road about our adventures with him. He won’t be getting his own blog though.

Check back for an update on Logan’s vacation perspective here: https://adventuresoflojac.wordpress.com/ in a few days. Needless to say going on a trip with a 1 and a half year old is completely different experience. A year ago I was amazed at how laid back he was, how much he slept, how little he cried, etc. Well, things change.

 

September 1, 2016. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Observations and musings, Updates. 1 comment.

Let’s do a projeck!

IMG_3008We have ourselves a little artist. And I don’t mean just a painter. A true creative, artistic, dramatic character of a kiddo who loves to paint, draw, sing, tell stories, and throw fits (which is really a very understated term to give them). It’s so cool and cute and frustrating and challenging and rewarding all at once. Which is something I imagine every parent can say about every kid. To call Hannah unique wouldn’t quite cover it. We’re all unique, that’s really just a synonym for being alive if you think about it (don’t think too hard, these posts aren’t supposed to be that deep).

Hannah is a lot like most 3-going-on-14 year old girls – loves princesses, ponies, fairies, and dolls. She’s not totally a girly girl, she loves bugs and doesn’t hesitate to pick up a worm or ant or random unidentified beetle. We’ve always had “boy” toys for her too, and she likes playing with them to an extent, but she has an above-average attention span when it comes to the stuff I mentioned before. However, if you really want to get her excited and having fun, give her a “projeck” (that’s how she pronounces it). Arts and crafts, painting, drawing, gluing, stamping, stickering, sewing, cutting, singing, it doesn’t matter. Last rainy weekend we had a fun time drawing on each other with washable markers – we did that for almost 2 hours I think, so we may have to get her a little toddler tattoo kit!

She’s not really one to sit and listen to you read a book to her, which is something we’ve been doing sincIMG_2999e she was just days old. She’d rather take the book from you and make up the words herself.

One of the best memories I’ll ever have of her is the first time she told me a story off the top of her head. Not borrowing from a book she heard or a story I made up for her, but her own little parable with a beginning, a plot, and a happy ending. I don’t remember the exact specifics, but it was about two animals who weren’t friends at first, were doing an activity and didn’t like each other, but then ended up being friends. This was a couple months ago and lately she’s been more into making up songs about current situations. She isn’t always comfortable singing in front of people, but when she does you can tell she is paying attention to the sound and at the same time understanding the words.

You always want to think about what they’re going to get into when they get older, and Hannah could end up doing a wide range of things, but I thinkIMG_3106 we may have a performer on our hands if we can continue to build her self-confidence.

Hannah is a big sister now and the jealousy seems to be waning a bit. Sure there are moments when “baby brudder” has a toy that she wants or has one of “her” toys, and we’re teaching her not to snatch them away and to be nice and caring and sharing. And I think she gets it. The sweetest moments are when they’re playing together nicely and she says “here you go buddy” in her high pitched voice. Very rarely is he “Logan” around our house. He’s Logey, Rogey, Yogi, baby brudder, buddy, or the boy.

I haven’t written in a few months, so there’s probably so much more to tell that I can’t wait to share with her when she’s older, but for now this is what jumps out at me. Sam is doing an amazing job with Hannah and Logan when she’s home with them 2 days a week, and it’s nice that they have a mix of a few days of socializing and a couple days home with momma. Crazy to think that she’ll be in Kindergarten before we know it!

May 7, 2016. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Observations and musings, Updates. 1 comment.

Can we have this to go please?

We recently discovered that an hour wait, a missed nap, and noisy, unfamiliar surroundings can quickly cause an 8 month old to go from happy and curious to agitated and restless to crying and pissed off in just a matter of minutes. OK, so we already knew that, but we’ve been smart and/or lucky enough so far to avoid such a situation…until recently, when Hannah made her first restaurant visit. We had a feeling that the long wait could be the first ingredient in a recipe for disaster, but the night started out just fine. The waiting area was packed and this lovely March weather pre photo IMAG0846-1_zpsb7b15e6f.jpgvented us from waiting outside, so we all (mom, Josh, Jill, Mariah, Monica and us) managed to carve out our own little section right in the path of the nice employees attempting to seat and serve tables. Hannah actually made it through the wait just fine, but we could tell she was getting a tired and hungry. The cute little squirt is a timebomb, and while Sam and I can usually cut the red wire before the timer hits zero, sometimes there’s stopping it. This was one of those times.

We had our bottle warmer plugged in behind the hostess station and it was ready about the time we were seated. Success. Then started my scavenger hunt. (Listen to this while reading the next few sentences) Head to the table with baby and baggage to help get Hannah seated in her high chair. Over to the bathroom to wet a washcloth. Back to the table to drop it off. Down to the hostess station to grab the bottle and bottle warmer. Return to the table to drop off the bottle. Go to the bathroom to wash of the pacifier that fell under our neighbor’s chair. Finally, I got back to the table and sat down to order with everyone. Hannah reluctantly took a few bites and sipped a little milk, but she was starting to get a little restless and wasn’t all that interested in refreshments. She didn’t finish the food or bottle, but she definitely wasn’t full. The fuse was lit and it was a quick burner. While to us it actually felt like hours, as I’m sure it did for our neighbors at surrounding tables, it was probably only 20-30 minutes of actual discomfort. Sam did her best to keep Hannah entertained, walking her around the restaurant in an attempt to distract and calm her. Meanwhile, I ate, cause that’s what I do best. In hindsight, we probably should have left the restaurant a little earlier and took our food with us. I finished mine, but Sam felt so bad for our neighboring tables that she barely ate…so hers came home in a container and she got to eat it cold a little later. Moms are the bomb. At the time, it was so loud in there that we could barely hear Hannah, so it didn’t seem like it could be bothering anyone. Sam begs to differ. We packed up and headed out. It was a delightful ride home, a screaming baby in the backseat and two flustered, frustrated parents in the front. All ended well though, we got her in her jammies and she took a bottle and passed out like nothing even happened. Short memory that one.

Lesson learned: baby’s first visit or visits to a restaurant should be when he/she is well-rested and during non-peak hours. There is a lot for them to process, all 5 senses are being stimulated at the same time. We had been avoiding doing too much in public for months with the flu being so nasty this year and Hannah only being half-vaccinated, so it’s something we needed to ease into. Well, that night was the equivalent of taking a high school freshman to a nightclub on spring break – too much to see, taste, hear, touch and smell for the first time. Luckily, Hannah didn’t get alcohol poisoning or fall off a balcony, she just shed a few tears and exercised her vocal cords a bit. No harm done!

March 31, 2013. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , . Observations and musings. Leave a comment.

Say Cheesepickles!

Sam and I have a super power. It’s not going to last forever, maybe months, hopefully years, but for right now we have this power and we’re going to abuse it. We can’t fly or bend steel or even shoot spider webs (though if Sam had that power she would probably cut off her own hands). We do kind of have x-ray vision, but it only applies to diapers, though that’s not what I’m talking about. I’m referring to our ability to get Hannah to smile simply by making eye contact. It isn’t 100% automatic. When she’s sleepy or hungry or gassy or distracted and/or just NOT in the mood. But usually when she sees one of our faces she gets the biggest grin, it’s 100% impossible to not return it. In the first few weeks of her life the only smiles we got were when she was about to fill her diaper with something smelly, whether it was a colorful collection of crap or a colorless, but certainly not odorless, gas. It’s always hard to pinpoint when she starts or stops doing something. I’m terrible with dates, but it’s quite possible Sam remembers the date and time of Hannah’s first smile. I do know that, despite the fact that she just went to the doctor for shots (she no longer hates us), for the past couple of weeks whenever she looks at us she cracks a smile. And we love it. Often it’s our favorite, a big ol’ toothless beam. We can never, ever get enough of those. We find ourselves making the weirdest noises and faces just to get another one. Occasionally, she’s smiling when we don’t want her to. Why in the world would you ever not want your child to be smiling, you ask? I’ll tell you when. When it’s midnight and she (and I) should be in bed, but instead she’s just staring up at me, playfully cheesing away. That means she’s wide awake and is either going to keep playing, or if I’m not cooperating, cry till her mom comes to the rescue. I try to avoid looking directly at her, because according to something I read, and I believe it, making eye contact with a baby is the equivalent of giving him/her a cup of coffee. But how can I not? So instead I try to outsmart her by keeping my head facing the TV or my phone, but peek out of the corner of my eye. Or, another “trick” I try so I can sneak a peak – my face is down toward her, but I’m squinting my eyes so it looks like I’m asleep. It doesn’t work. She just smiles even bigger and starts riding her invisible bicycle. Ever tried to smile with your mouth full? Well somehow she can even smile with her pacifier in, so it just hangs there like Winston Churchill’s cigar. When she pulls that it’s difficult to suppress a chuckle or two.

We are extremely blessed to have a happy, healthy baby, and we’re very grateful. Some updates: She’s up to 13 lbs and is long. According to the doctor’s chart, her head is not small. She’s managing to hold it up quite a bit though, she’s extremely curious and just wants to look around at everything. She recognizes certain voices and she really loves her Grandmas. We know these moments aren’t going to last forever. There is going to come a time when we she won’t smile at us no matter what we do. That being the case, please forgive me for not having written for awhile, I’ve got a baby to stare at!

September 17, 2012. Tags: , , , , , , , . Observations and musings, Updates. Leave a comment.

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