Monday, November 26, 2012

Sofi's 1 year old bday party!

We had so much fun at Sofi's first birthday party. Val sets the bar high (luckily we already had our party because I can't compete with this one!). She made home made play-dough which smelled delicious (ask Eli how it tasted), and yogurt finger paint in various neon colors. Notice how nicely the other moms are dressed. I know my child and I was right to dress in icky clothes because both of us were covered in cornstarch yogurt about 1.5 minutes into finger painting! We had a blast playing with bubbles, balloons, banana bread cupcakes and if you look, there were two other BOYS at this party!!! Jackson has some boy buds despite all the evidence that proves otherwise. And I am incredibly blessed to have so many new friends through Val.

J holds on with both hands to Val's homemade cupcake
In other happenings, Jackson has been to the polls 3 times in his short life, which is almost equals the times I have voted :( I am better now, I promise! We took a 5:15 am run which ended at the polls at 6 where we froze our booties off for 30 minutes (only 30 minutes!) to get inside. I was slightly disappointed that no one offered us a spot inside while we waited but that is what blankets are for. He then went back to the polls 4 hours later with dad. 

Who thought giving Pad Thai to a finger-feeding 1 year-old in a nice sweater was a good idea?
Finally, Jackson's newest game is peek-a-boo but he is the one who hides. It makes me realize how ridiculous I look when I play with him. 

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Visit to Springfield

We had a great visit up in Springfield last weekend. We were supposed to see Aunt Karen, Uncle Bob and Riley in September after the Tough Mudder, but things happened which prevented us from making it to NJ for the weekend. Thankfully we were able to meet up in Springfield for a few days. For ease of titles, Riley is my cousin but she is also going to be J's cousin as well. I won't be able to keep things straight with Aunts, cousins, cousin's babies, great uncles, second-cousins-once-removed, etc all running around. Riley brought Jackson a ball pit for his birthday and he can't get enough of it. His favorite thing is to drape himself backwards over the edge and relax.  He sets himself up for the perfect tummy zerbel :) Hopefully Aunt Karen got some pictures of them was tough to keep two very active kids still (and looking somewhat towards the camera) at the same time for a picture!

Riley and her static hair
Then, we went over to South Run park for some time at the playground. I wasn't much of a runner growing up, but since I moved away I discovered a great trail from South Run to and around Burke Lake for a 7-8 mile run. It is perfect...shady, beautiful, quiet and just hilly enough for a challenging workout. We played on the slides for an hour or so and then grand mom and pop pop took Jackson so I could go running sans baby jogger. I miss the convenience of having my water bottle, iPod storage, etc but it is nice to just run by myself.  Jackson loves the slide and the swings and is almost ready to go down the slide totally by himself! I just can't let him go just yet :)

just doing some cleaning
And finally, he is taking after both granddads and becoming quite the engineer, stacking small spice jars  all morning. I love to watch his little brain figure something out and try to execute it. Being a parent is the most rewarding job ever.

Friday, November 16, 2012


So I am the luckiest gal ever. I have an awesome husband, a cute little kid and the greatest friends who like to do things like thisthis, and this.
We had so much fun taking pictures before going trick-or-treating. It was an adventure to corral 4 almost/new/experienced walkers in the front yard while in costume and try to get the in photos together!

Eli is usually he happiest kid ever but he was under the weather :( Poor guy. We are so glad that they joined us for a few minutes and brought delicious homemade kid-friendly cookies! Look at that shy dragon

something was really frightening or sad I guess?! 

Sofi is the one who taught Jackson how to clap!
Kristi made this hat and skirt (see above)

Happy Tails to you!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Chick Fil A

How do you know you have a toddler?

Your dog's fur is covered in clumps of oatmeal.  
The floors are sticky with whole milk. 
The dishwasher runs daily instead of twice a week.
You start your car and "Itsy Bitsy Spider" blasts over the speakers.
Cheerios are everywhere...and I mean, everywhere

I love being the mom of a toddler. Don't get me wrong, I am EXHAUSTED most days, but watching him grow up is incredible. Jonathan remarked the other day that it's quite odd to see him walking around our house. It's these same setting that held the immobile blob of cute chubby baby and then the crawler, but for some reason it looks strange to see him walking around our house. I guess it just emphasizes the point that our little guy is growing up. In a moment of true creative genius, I told a friend, "It's like they are...well, you know...little people". I could have made millions if I just thought of that earlier! *sigh*.  He walks, eats adult food, dresses in cute little boy clothes and is starting to do real problem solving and purposeful play.  

Recently, there has been one thing that makes me so encouraged to be a mother. It is that look that Jackson gives me. When he turns around, looks into my eyes and gives me the look as if to say, "Hi mom. I trust you. I love you."  It's the look like I am the greatest person on this earth.  What a huge responsibility and privilege that I've been given to raise this little boy with Jonathan. 

here are a few shots from our week
men in white (grandad Byrne)
playing outside with Grandmother Beth
Blair and I just did the Wicked 10K as 80s prom queens. Yes, our hair is crimped :)

I never go out to eat but yesterday I was running errands with jackson and I thought it would be fun to stop at Chick Fil A. We got some nuggets and a yogurt and shared our lunch together. This brings back memories of being a kid and going out to eat with mom and made me really excited for when Jackson is a little older and we can go on 'dates' together. Chick Fil A is the BEST place to bring a 1 year old if you are by yourself. They not only asked what I needed, but they even anticipated my needs, bringing a place mat, toy and cleaning up for me when I was covered in yogurt, mustard and chicken. I might be forced to go there more often since it was such a great experience! :) 
  I bought some crayons for a program through church and got an extra pack for Jackson. Coloring is slightly above his skill set at this time. His goals were holding all of the crayons in his hands and making sure to lick each one. The green tasted the best. 

Monday, November 5, 2012

Walking, Waving, High 5-ing

We love watching Jackson grow up! In the past few weeks, he has made some exciting developments, including waving, giving high-fives and walking! We just think that each phase of his life is getting better and better.