Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Charlie {month 7}

Charlie turned 7 months on Tuesday.  It's hard to believe how quickly the months are passing and how quickly Charlie is growing.
I'm 7 months old 
It was another great month, and Charlie hit some fun milestones.  He started sitting, just after he turned 6 months, then started getting up on all 4's and rocking.  He can move well in a circle, and can manage to scoot backwards, but still hasn't figured out how to move forward, and it's making him mad.  Instead of working on it, he has decided he just wants to stand, and if we are holding him, jump.

He still smiles and laughs all the time, and doesn't like to sit still.  I think in the past month, I've changed more diapers, and put more clothes on upside down than right side up!
Look at me now!
He is talking more - mostly in the form of grunts, but occasionally "da" and "ba".  He also started giving kisses.  The cute, baby, open mouth kisses, it's the sweetest thing.  During bath time, he refuses to lean back in the baby tub, so it's making bathing both kids together rather difficult.  When he gets to sit in the big tub, he splashes and kicks and has so much fun.  Sydney is not too happy when he splashes her in the face.

We're struggling a bit with food.  I went from giving him whole veggies, to homemade purees, to baby food, to baby oatmeal and he didn't want any of it.  Then we were out to lunch at a barbeque place and he grabbed at a rib.  We let him take it and, of course, he loved it.  Crazy boy.  Turns out, he is only interested in eating what we are eating.  Here are the foods he will tolerate so far: ribs, chicken, scrambled eggs, cauliflower florets, broccoli florets, split pea soup.
Cauliflower - ok!
This month we celebrated Charlie's first Halloween.  His first costume was Sandy, the dog from Annie, but he also wore Sydney's sushi roll costume to a party because it was much cuter.  We walked in the Farmer's Market Halloween parade, went to a party at a friends house, then made it trick-or-treating to 5 houses in the neighborhood.  Charlie could have cared less, but Sydney had a blast.
Annie and her dog Sandy
Here are some more of my favorite photos this month:
I didn't even know he could sit on his own until Bama just sat him up one day (Oct 30th, for the records) and he stayed!
At the Farmers Market parade
My happy baby
Kisses from Dada
Still figuring this whole swing thing out
Moving backwards
I don't know how he gets himself wrapped up like this so quickly
I still spy his big smile
Charlie looooooves being up on our shoulders, he just cracks up
Nighttime shenanigans
Charlie is naked because he was messy from eating
Sydney is naked because....I'm not really sure. Maybe because Charlie was naked?
Look Mom!
Proud big sisters holding their baby brothers
Reading books to Charlie under the table
First kiss - kidding, it's family
Giving cousin Audrey some love
I just assumed he wanted a hand when he let go....
Charlie and his signature smile
7 months - side by side with Syndey
color coordination was unintentional
It was a fun month, and we're kicking off Charlie's next month with Thanksgiving.  We will be spending lot's of time with family as 2016 comes to a close.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Charlie {month 6}

Charlie turned 6 months old on the 22nd!  How is it possible that he is half way to a year old?

Happy Half Birthday Charlie!
This was another busy month for us, and Charlie hit some fun milestones.  Once he figured out how to master rolling from his belly to back, he started rolling all over the place.  We can't keep him still.  He is able to pivot on his belly and is trying so hard to figure out how to get up on his hands and knees at the same time. 

Catch me if you can

My favorite part about this month is Sydney's ability and excitement around making Charlie smile and laugh. Without fail, if she starts jumping or crawling around, Charlie burst out in laughter.  I assumed that Charlie would be fascinated with Sydney but I never expected Sydney to be so amused by Charlie.  She gets a kick out of him doing silly things, like rolling under the table, making funny noises or playing with toys in different ways.  She is also very interested when he does new things, like eat real food or grab his feet, both of which he started doing this month.

I started back at work at the beginning of October.  It went surprisingly well for both of us.  The daycare ladies love how much he smiles and laughs and the other kids are having fun making him giggle too.  Before going back to work, we did some sleep training.  It went well and Charlie is now able to sleep through the night!  It's life changing.

From his first weeks at daycare
Other things that Charlie is into these days are food and books.  Not reading books, but playing with the pages, eating the edges and occasionally looking at the pictures. Speaking of eating the pages, right now, he is grabbing at everything and putting it straight to his mouth, including faces, hair, zippers all the hay at the pumpkin patch.

Loves his books

For a long time Charlie has been eying our food and a few weeks back he started lunging at any food in sight.  He is a busy boy, and we thought he might be ready, so we gave him some avocado!  He was pretty excited and shocked by it all, but in typical Charlie fashion he smiled his way through his first meal.  Sydney was also excited about Charlie eating avocado until she saw the mess he made.  When Charlie wouldn't eat a slice of avocado off a spoon from her, she decided to spend her time cleaning up the table and Charlie's face.  We gave him some sweet potato and carrots to play around with as well but we are taking it really slow - as in, we are busy and there isn't a lot of time between when we get home from work and bed time, especially with toddler to entertain and feed.

Sydney cleaning up

Here are the rest of my favorite photos from the month:

My little guy
Hi Dada
How cute is that V-neck t-shirt?
Friday afternoon beer before we pick up Sydney
Now that I am back to work, both kids need baths in the evening
So this is the only practical option
Everyone has fun
Sleeping baby - so cute
Found my feet!
Can I have one, please?
Coming home from work to 2 happy kids makes for a fun night
Our happy guy
Dada gets a kiss during story time
Christmas jammies in September!
I'll never be tired of this smile
Favorite son, Favorite daughter

Even though the sun was bright, he still managed to smile for me
Sydney picked out a little pumpkin for herself and one for Charlie

Typical diaper change. This little guy doesn't sit still
tough day at daycare
I have a feeling we will be doing a lot more cleaning up after Charlie's meals
First good rain
Time for a walk and to jump in puddles
One of Charlie's many Halloween costumes
Charlie went swinging for the first time on his 1/2 birthday.
I couldn't get a photo because he wouldn't take his eyes off Sydney next to him
6 month side by side
With the end of the year coming, I expect the next 6 months to fly by as quickly as the first.  We love this little guy so much and can't wait to see what's next.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Summer Vacation {Planes, Trains and Automobiles}

Sydney's school closes for a 2 week summer break, so we decided to take a road trip up to Bend, Oregon to visit some friends, then head over to Portland to stay with my parents.  The plan was to all drive up, then Brian would drive home to get back to work, and I would stay with the kids a few more days and fly home with them. 

My best "mom win" of the trip - Sydney's snack pack
She loved this and it provided hours entertainment and food
We gave ourselves 2 days to get to Bend.  Without stopping, it's an 8 hour drive.  We went into day 1 hoping to get to Kalamath Falls (6 hours without stops) but with the expectations we may only make it to Redding (3 hours without stopping).   It took us 7.5 hours but we ended up making it to Kalamath Falls.  The kids were troopers.  We stopped for a coffee break around Redding, we stopped when Sydney got car sick just north of Shasta, and for dinner in Weed.  Day 2, we woke up feeling refreshed and decided to take a detour to Crater Lake.  We literally debated if we should do it until seconds before the turn off.   It was definitely a detour for us, not the kids.  It added 45 minutes onto the drive, but it was beautiful and I was so happy to finally see Crater Lake.  It's on the list of places to go back to someday so we can spend more time there, camping and exploring, it's stunning.

At Crater Lake
We spent a few days in Bend with our friends the McGuire's checking out some breweries, some parks, and popping around downtown.  Our first day, we had the most amazing breakfast at McKay Cottage before spending the morning letting the kids splash in the river at Tumalo Park. It was beautiful and fun.  A perfect way to spend our first day in Oregon. 

Deschutes River at Tumalo State Park
After a few days, we loaded up the car and hit the road for MarMe and Grandpa Billy's house.  It was finally a bit of a vacation for Brian and I as grandparents are always excited to focus on the kids, and babysit so we could sneak away for dinner and drinks.
Brian took Sydney to the coffee shop one morning and they gave her a water in a to-go coffee cup
She thought it was so cool. Now, whenever we go to coffee, she wants her own "coffee"
Sydney had SO much fun with all the toys and games my parents have in Portland.  She was obsessed with the playhouse in their backyard and spent hours with MarMe, "cleaning" and making "phone calls" from the old rotary phone.  She was also really into a huge Annie doll that my mom made for me and my sister when we were little.  She dressed up like Annie, she played hide-and-seek with Annie and had to have Annie sleep in the bed next to her. 

Every night after dinner, she would go on a walk with Grandpa Billy.  She always came home with a few things they found along the way - flowers, pinecones, string beans, it was the cutest thing.
After dinner walk with Grandpa Billy
One morning we went to the Oregon Zoo.  Sydney is finally old enough to get excited about the animals.  I think her favorite were the seals swimming underwater.  After a few hours, she was so worn out,  she was a zombie just sitting in her stroller staring blankly at the animals.  Another morning, my mom and I took the kids to the Children's Museum in Portland.  We kind of rushed her through so we could see all the exhibits, but I have to say her favorite part was the piano out front. 

We were able to catch up with a lot of friends and their kids, which is becoming more chaotic, and more fun, as everyone's family grows. We met a handful of new babies, and some friends were even lucky enough to catch Charlie awake.
At the Zoo
Being at your grandparents house, you always get spoiled.  Sydney got to experience this for the first time this trip.  We went to Frozen Yogurt twice, she snacked on graham cracker bunnies nearly everyday, she baked her own blueberry pie with MarMe, and I even let her put a little whip cream on top of her berries a few times.
Spoiled by MarMe - Mama would never give her a bite that big
Everyone was nervous for me to fly home with the kids by myself, except me.  I figured if it was horrible, it was only a 1.5 hour flight and that people would be more sympathetic because I was on my own.  Plus it had to be easier than all the time we spent in the car.

Leading up to the flight, Sydney and I read an Airport book. She was so excited.  She has been on many flights, but this was the first one that she was old enough to understand what was going on.  We were looking out the window at the gate when our plane rolled up. She was so excited, she kept saying "Sydney's plane. That's Sydney's plane.  Mama, that's Sydney's plane".  Both kids were perfect in the airport and on the flight, it was super easy.  I even made it to the bathroom for myself and changed Sydney's diaper in flight.  I had a feeling by the time I made it all the way to the front of the plane, someone would offer to hold Charlie, and I was right. 

If you ask Sydney what she did on the plane, she will say "I put on my seatbelt".  Charlie's friend Nathan, and his mama Danielle, picked us up from the airport.  It was such a treat. She packed a snack bag and stickers for Sydney, which was so thoughtful.  Both kids fell asleep on the drive home, Sydney with one hand in the snack bag.
through security, heading to get a coffee
Here are some of my favorite photos from the trip:

Brian and the kids at Crater Lake
Charlie at Crater Lake
Checking out the view
The most amazing brewery in Bend
Sydney and Tyler having a blast at Tumalo State Park
"Big Splash" as Andy throws a big rock into the water
Watching elephants with MarMe

Walking around downtown Bend
Charlie's first time facing forward
Downtown Bend
Feeding the ducks leftover bread from our picnic lunch
Another day, another brewery in Bend
Sydney loved 10 Barrel
fascinated by the seals at the Portland Zoo
The playhouse
Cooking in the playhouse
Having so much fun at MarMe and Grandpa Billy's
Baking her very own, teeny tiny, blueberry pie
ready to eat
Sydney had so much fun playing in the fountain downtown Portland
We had to drag her out
Bedtime stories with Dada and Annie

Matching Annie
Jumping on couches with "Dell"
We have a video of them jumping and Sydney watches it over and over again
Park date with Mama's friend
I love how he is lounging in the tub
MarMe and Charlie
This kid likes to stand
Grandpa Billy and MarMe
and one with just Charlie

someday I will miss this
but Charlie took way too many naps like this on our trip
playing in the grocery store at the Children's Museum
Intense piano playing
another trip to FroYo
Here we go! On the plane
Quick snooze and snack
Passed out on the drive home from the airport
We had a great time on our trip and it was so nice to catch up with friends and family.  As fun as it is to go away, it's always nice to get home and get back into routine.  We are already looking forward to our next family adventure.