Sunday, May 26, 2013

Adventures outside the home

We go through spurts where we love to be SUPER busy outside the home. Sitting inside all day makes us go stir crazy and both J and I need some fresh air. We love the fact that it's finally nice outside and we can head out without jackets (well, aside from yesterday's 50 degree weather, what was that all about?!) Recently we just love to walk the neighborhood but sometimes but other days we throw in some scheduled activities to learn and play! 

We went to the Larchmont Elementary Carnival for the second year in a row.  
It's amazing what a year will do!!
We were hoping to see the fire engine again but this year we had to settle for a petting zoo and a train! J finally got the hang of petting the goats and desperately wanted to get into the cage with the chickens. 
We ate a big pretzel together and tried to eat a hotdog but he just at the bun. This kid doesn't know what he is missing...I am actually feeding him things like Mac N Cheese, hotdogs, and chicken nuggets and he refuses them. What kind of kid is he??! :)  I guess he's my carb-loving kid!
We took a brief nap and then walked over with Lael, Alex and Jordan to the ODU baseball game which was so much fun. He stood looking down upon the players in the dugout and watched about 30 seconds of the whole game (Just enough for me to get this shot which looks like he might have been engaged in the game). Most of the time we were down behind the 3rd base line looking at the equipment they use to groom the field. One of the employees even gave him a ball from one of the games! We ate a hotdog for dinner (again, he at the bun and I at the dog).  He then proved once again that his favorite artist is Stevie Wonder. Before he was born, he went wild when the opening act played a Stevie song at a concert and he continues to dance wildly to his music every time he hears it. I think that is so fascinating 
The Mazzio twins turned 4 and had another bounce house which was way more fun for Jackson to play in this year. Both J and I bounced around for a good hour, ate some picnic food, played in their new outdoor play house and fell right asleep after a fun-filled day.  Many of his neighborhood friends are 4 and 5 years old and it's so sweet to see how kind and gentle they are with him. 
We had a great morning doing Girls on the Run. It's an organization which teaches girls about self-esteem, teamwork, healthy eating and overall healthy living. With the lessons, they also train for a 5K. I got to be a running buddy for Clair, a 3rd grader. She was awesome to run with and it is so encouraging to know that there is a program out there to empower girls to be healthy in all aspects of life.  
Finally, we are on our second cycle of swimming lessons at the Y. Jackson is a little water baby and sure loves his speedo!!! Gotta show off that belly while you've got it, right? He has learned how to sit and wait (ha) on the edge of the pool and then get in safely, how to get out with a little help, how to blow bubbles (still learning that one), be comfortable on his back (not loving that just yet) and get his whole body wet. He really just loves to splash around in the shallow end and hide in lockers :) 

WHEW!!!!!! We need a big nap! 

Mother's Day

Life has been way too busy to sit at the computer and blog recently! Jackson is moving faster every day and we are struggling to keep up with him! We thought that he was going to work off his belly, but there is no sign of that just yet. We had a great Sunday celebrating Mother's Day and BB's birthday several days before. Beth cooked up a stunning brunch, as always, and we enjoyed good company with Lou and the Speasmaker parents.  I'm saving my Mother's Day gift, a pedicure, for after the Tough Mudder next month when my feet will really need some TLC. 
Front porch sittin'....watching motorcycles go by

Our little family

J loves giving high-fives but we have yet to convince him to give them to strangers or acquaintances.  He currently just stares long and hard at strangers, not in fear but in curiosity. 
Happy belated Mother's Day to you all!

Sunday, May 5, 2013

18 months

A few days late, but happy half birthday, Boo. 
You continue to amaze us as you learn and grow each day. You are coming in consistently at 75% height and weight and still have a 95% head (big head, big brains!). Thankfully you have been in the same wardrobe for the past few months (especially considering that it's still winter in May!). We can't wait for warmer weather so we can see more of your precious little thighs in cute toddler shorts.
You have realized that you can reach doorknobs but most of them in our house don't do anything. We either have doors that are impossible to open/close with a combination of lift, pull, wiggle and shut, or door knobs that are just for show. Our closets are no longer safe from you! A new stepstool allows you full view of the kitchen counters and gets you one foot closer to grabbing bananas for yourself. I loved having your help baking cookies the other afternoon.
You are still our big eater, eating like we are all told to...breakfast like a King, lunch like a Prince and dinner like a pauper.  You try to get your hands on every little piece of fruit you can find in the house but we have managed to slip in a few red and orange peppers; still nothing green gets by you. You eat hummus by the handful (literally), chicken nuggets and all things dairy. You like buns without the hotdog and finally tried mac and cheese last week.  Juice is not your thing but you do have an affinity for sweets when we allow you a treat.  We're trying to convince you that using a spoon is your best bet, but in the meantime you learned how to use a napkin which has spared us some mess. I also taught you how to cover your mouth when you cough/sneeze, which will hopefully keep my face cleaner

 You are our sweet child, still very cautious about most things and you are still momma's boy. You realized that we left you last week and since then have not left my side. I know I should be grateful for these moments but I am really craving some independence for you right now.  You have also been cutting your final two teeth (bottom K9s) for the last 2-3 weeks which I know must be painful so we've allowed a little extra paci time and given you plenty of snuggles. I love how you will be playing with toys and then suddenly come over to give me a hug and walk back to your toys. Will you do this when you are 12? 17? 27? You are not a big risk taker, which makes me happy as I have already had about 50 mini-heart attacks from the sudden movements you have made that have/almost ended up in injuries.   You fully assess a situation, look for my response and then occasionally try it, so I'm trying to back out of the picture more and watch what you'll do on your own. You still seem to be very cautious. 
 If given a choice, you would spend every waking moment outside, walking up and down our sidewalks, looking at planes, trucks and cars and searching for pinecones.  We love chasing bubbles, taking Link for runs and going to the Pirate Park to play with mulch and go down the slide.  
Swimming lessons at the Y were a huge hit, and you are fairly proficient with kicking, blowing bubbles and sliding off the edge of the pool on your belly. Being on your back is your least favorite position, both in the pool and for diaper changes, and you protest large and loud! 

You love going to church nursery, seeing your grandparents, petting Lincoln each morning, throwing away trash in the outside cans and watering your tomato plant.  You love being tickled, reading books, playing with cars and walking up and down ramps. You love water from the bathtub spout and the watering hose. You prefer to be clean vs. messy. You still rub your hair when you are tired and start it immediately after we give you the paci for bedtime.  You are a belly sleeper with your butt in the air, usually legs crossed indian style beneath you (looks uncomfortable!). You are crazy over all things that move in the air, water and land.  You love classical music and make quite a good conductor. When asked to 'give mom a kiss' you turn your cheek towards me, and you give us the best hugs around the neck.  You have a few words, finally: ball, duck and dada. More are coming, all starting with 'b': bus, banana, berries, bear. We can't wait to hear you talk more so we can know what is going on in that cute little head of yours! 
Here are some shots from our two attempts at a 18 month old photo were not having it so we had to recruit daddy the next day. As you can see, you have developed quite the sense of what you want and when you want it and you are sure to let us know when you are not happy with the current situation.  Don't worry, we still love you even when you are having knock down, thrash around, yell and scream tantrums multiple times a day :) You are still our sweet little boo and you are just learning

We thank God for you every day, Jackson. We pray that you will grow to be a kind, strong, God-fearing man and we are grateful for the chance to parent you on your journey.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Hatteras in the Spring

We are so grateful to have wonderful friends who happen to have an amazing beach house in Rodanthe, NC. We were able to visit again in April for a relaxing get-away with just the three of us.  It's amazing to see how things have changed over the years. 
The first year we stayed in Buxton in a pet-friendly hotel, visited lighthouses, lay on the beach for 8 hours and ate at Orange Blossom Cafe every morning. We had an amazing 4 course dinner for our anniversary as well. Yum. 

Lincoln got so much attention back then...

We enjoyed three (childless) Thanksgiving celebrations there, first with Kate, then with Ila, then Summer, Ilah, Jackson, Susannah and this coming year, Luke and Virginia and Hanger baby-to-be!  Thanks to the Doziers for contributing a boy to this whole thing!

The next year we had our baby-moon when I was 5 months pregnant. 
preggo kayaking in 17mph winds....yeah, that was fun :)

We went down for the 4th annual Friends-giving with a 1 month old Jackson...
kitchen clean-up duty

 ...this past October with both sets of parents for J's 1st birthday celebration...
...and finally in November for the 5th annual Friends-giving
J and Susu
We love this house and everything about the area. The calmness of the sound, listening to the powerful ocean waves from the top deck. Enjoying a cup of coffee on a breezy morning and a beer while watching the sun set. Soaking in the sun, eating apple uglies, lounging around doing nothing. 

We took J man to see his first lighthouse and he went crazy over the big busses unloading tourists from up north! We went to watch the fishing boats come in and unload their catches on the dock. J touched a  tuna...ewwww. He splashed around in the sound, walked on the beach and played cars on the top deck for hours.  
Look! A huge bus!

impromptu splash in the sound