Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Wreaker of Havoc

aka, my son.  As Ethan gets older, I'm quickly learning that with increased mobility comes increased challenges to mama.  In our case, this is especially apparent on the changing table, where Ethan likes to make once simple tasks, like getting him dressed, or changing his diaper, into Olympic events, complete with punches, kicks, twists, turns, and any other physical motions he feels like throwing in there.  He grabs my sweater and puts it in his mouth, he swipes the Desitin and tosses it to the floor, he knocks down anything within's crazy!  When he really gets going, he's like a bucking bronco!  And I've tried to hold him down, but until I can become a literal octo-mom, as in I actually have eight arms, resistance appears to be futile!  So for now I guess I'll just laugh and enjoy the show. :-)

By the way, this clip is just a small snippet of his usual shenanigans...but you'll get the drift!  Oh, and please pardon the stuffy nose- I am battling a gnarly sinus infection (yet again...)

Splish, splash...

...Ethan's takin' a bath!  Tonight we packed up Ethan's baby bath tub (sniff sniff, no I'm not crying, why do you ask?) It's been coming for about a soon as he learned to sit up, he no longer reclined in the tub.  Instead, he would sit bolt upright balancing on that little seat, which, since it was angled for babies who were leaning back, looked uncomfortable and more importantly, unstable!  So tonight we decided we'd try him in the regular (or as we called it, "big boy") bath tub.  He LOVED it!  Check it out!

This is FUN!  I'm a big boy now!
LOVE those wet eyelashes

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Top 10

Clay and I had a fun discussion about this last the realm of eating and drinking, what are your top ten, all time favorite, life is better because of them, items?  Keep in mind, these are not desert island picks (in other words, you don't need to worry about staying alive on these 10), and they don't have to be the things you eat or drink the most frequently- we're talking about the things that you love, adore, and relish every time you partake of them.  And you have to be specific (makes it harder)!  Clay rattled his off pretty quickly, but I had a much harder time, because I enjoy food so was like asking me to choose a favorite child!  I guess when you're as picky as Clay, it's an easier task.  ;-)  Anyhow, many things I love (like peanut butter!  and yogurt with granola! and lemon sorbet!) did not make the cut, but here's where we landed last night.  I'm sure if we talked about it again tonight, the list would change.

My picks:

2-Caramelized Onions
3-Peppermint ice cream
5-Gruyere cheese
6-Dark chocolate
8- Blackberry pie, a la mode
9- Dried cranberries
10- A good margarita

Clay's picks:

1-Bacon (see folks, this is why we're married!  We've got similar interests, haha!)
2-Fettuccine Alfredo
3-His mom's breaded steak, which is pretty much the only thing I cannot successfully accomplish in my kitchen.
4-Red wine
5-Coffee (again...we complete each other)
7-Queso and chips
8-A good burger (his is lettuce and cheese only, which in my book, does not deserve the label "good," but hey, it's not my list...)
9-Macaroni and cheese

What about y'all?

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

5 months old!? My sweet E!? ALREADY!? How can this BE!?

I just realized my title rhymes.  How clever am I? :-)

I cannot believe that my Ethan is already 5 months old.  I can still remember every second of the day he was born like it was yesterday.  I know that sounds cliche, but it's true!  The thing that is so wonderful and surprising is that this motherhood thing just keeps getting better!  Just when I think he can't possibly get any cuter, or be any more fun, he goes and does it!  He is just a big ball of sunshine- smiley, laughing, and playful.  I am so blessed to be able to spend my days with him!  Every morning when I hear him stirring in his crib, usually before the sun is even up, I groggily stumble to his crib wishing coffee could be taken intravenously.  But then he SMILES and I'm instantly, happily awake.  And it's not just a run of the mill, generic smile- he lifts his eyebrows and makes this face that looks like he means to say, "Hey mama!  It's YOU!  I'm so glad you came to get me up!"  He's the most wonderful alarm clock a person could ask for.

Sweet boy
Here are some of the new stats on our guy: at his 4 month check up he weighed 15 1/2 lbs, and was 24 3/4  inches long, which puts him in the 75th percentile for weight and the 50th for height.  I think he might have inherited my looooong torso, because although he fits into his clothes, the pants always seem a bit long for him.  Hopefully male clothing will be a lot friendlier to that body type; growing up I had a terrible time finding certain types of clothes.  Let's just say "low rise" jeans were TOO low on me!

Looking too cute in his snazzy outfit.  I love love love love LOVE that sweet grin!
He is still very chatty, and has added squealing LOUDLY to his vocal reportoire.  For some reason he really gets going any time he's on the changing table.  And he's really laughing now too, which obviously delights us.  It makes us feel like he might like us just as much as we like him! ;-)

He has accomplished a few more "firsts" since I last posted...this list is in order of when they occurred (from 4 months to 5 months):

First time traveling: visiting Florida at Christmas.  Although I didn't get any pictures of our actual Christmas, here's a picture of Ethan and Clay at the tree lot!

As you can see, Ethan is absolutely thrilled to be a part of the selection process...
First time eating solid food: rice cereal.  He LOVED it! Made a big mess the first time, since he was getting the hang of the spoon, and you have to make it so watery for the first time (he definitely does better with it when it's thicker), but he has eaten it like a champ ever since.  I didn't originally plan to give him solids at 4 months (I figured we'd wait until he was 6 months), but it got to where any time Clay or I ate anything, the kid would watch us like a hawk!  I am not kidding, his little eyes just bored holes into I got the message that he might be ready, ha ha!

The aftermath
First time rolling continuously.  He mastered flipping from tummy to back at 2 months, and back to tummy at 3 months, but something clicked at month 4, and he realized he could put the two together and MOVE!

First time using his exersaucer.  It was so funny, the first time he got in it, you could tell he is an engineer's son.  He examined every inch of that thing, like he needed to understand how it worked before he could play in it.  I love this precious look of concentration!

Fascinated!  Can't you just see the little cogs in his head turning?
First time using his jumper.  This was a Hallelujah moment for me as a mama.  Dinner time had become the most fraught part of my day because Clay wasn't home yet, I was trying to get things done in the kitchen, but still entertain Ethan, who was winding down for the day (read: getting fussy), and believe it or not, hard kitchen floors aren't the best for baby play.  Thankfully, my parents sent the jumper, which was immediately installed in the doorway between our kitchen and dining room, where it is used every. single. day.  I love it!!  It keeps Ethan safe and in my line of vision, while keeping him entertained and happy, HANDS FREE!  Luckily, Ethan likes it too.  It's funny, because for about the first month he didn't really jump in it...he just kinda swung around in it, batting at the toys.  In fact, the first time he actually jumped, it must have been an accident- I turned around because I heard him jump, and he looked so surprised!  But now that he's learned how to do it, he goes to town!

You can't see me, but I'm in the background doing a dance of celebration! :-)
First time eating fruit: I chose nature's super-food, the mighty avocado!  I am making Ethan's baby food, and this was the best option all around for my first try!  It is a rock star nutritionally, but you also can't find an easier food to make baby friendly.  All I had to do was mash it up, add a tad bit of water to thin it out, smush it through a strainer, and voila!  Baby food!  Ethan loved it, just like me!  I like to imagine that some sweet day the two of us will gorge ourselves on tortilla chips and guacamole together! ;-) 

First time sitting up!  He is all but mastered this skill.  The picture below shows him with his Boppy behind him for support, but he really doesn't use it at all.  These days we sit him down without it, and with the exception of a few times (like if he reaches too far to one side, he'll roll down), he stays up on his own!

Smiling at daddy!

That's about all I have to report for now.  I am going to try to be better about posting more frequently.  It's my neurotic nature- I feel like I need to get everything just right before I post, and with a 5 1/2 month old, there's not much time for that kind of perfectionism.  Going forward I hope to focus more on just capturing the little things that I'll want to remember when we're older, and not worry so much about stupid things like the dang number of spaces between the photos and the text! Yes, I do pay attention to that kind of stuff, and yes, I think God sent me a strong-willed child to teach me how to relinquish control.  Until next time! :-)

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Holiday whirlwind, 2010

So remember how I promised a massive post was coming soon?  Well that was two weeks ago...yeah, I fail.  I seriously under-estimated how busy the holidays were going to be...or seriously over-estimated how productive I'd be.  Take your pick!  Nonetheless, I completely missed Ethan's 4 month post and the holiday posts I'd planned to write.  Bummer.  Never fear, though- I am going to do a quick catch up and get right back on the wagon. :-)

Thanksgiving 2010 was absolutely lovely!  We hosted it at our house and both sides of our family came up (having the first and only grandbaby provides a bit of leverage, heh heh).  I cooked the entire meal from scratch and loved it! I really liked being able to put my own spin on the Thanksgiving classics, and I'm pleased to say that everything turned out great.  My one regret is that I didn't get one. single. picture.  Of anything!  Not the food, not the people, not even of Ethan in his precious little Thanksgiving onesie!  I set a beautiful table with rented linens and fresh flowers and fall leaves...not one picture to show off!  So here's the menu I used: I decided that since I'm the only person in our family who eats dark meat (they're all crazies!), a whole turkey would go to waste.  So I bought a breast and made a turkey roulade, a la Ina Garten (you basically roll up the turkey breast around the stuffing, like a jelly roll).  I'm telling you, if loving that woman is wrong, I don't wanna be right!  The stuffing had sausage, pine nuts, mushrooms...oh, it was so so good!  I also made mashed potatoes and cranberry sauce using the recipes of another woman I love, The Pioneer Woman, Gran's yeast rolls (which I was the most intimidated about because she doesn't use recipes), roasted brussels sprouts, roasted carrots and parsnips, and gravy.  And for dessert THREE (count that, THREE) pies: apple, for my beloved; pecan, for my dad; and pumpkin, because the Bible says you've gotta have something pumpkin on Thanksgiving.  OK, so I lied about that.  But it is a pretty set in stone rule in my family.  I loved spending the day in the kitchen, and having my whole family around one table, laughing and talking.  But do you know what I loved even more?  My mom and mother-in-law were like little kitchen elves who spirited away every. single. dirty. dish.  These dainty little hands of mine touched nary a sud of dish soap.  It was magical.  I wish I had that kind of service all the time! :-)

Christmas was also great, but yet again, I did not take a single picture.  Ironically, I made extra sure to bring our camera AND the camera battery charger, because I just knew we were going to be taking SO many pictures it'd need to be recharged...oh, well.  You know what they say about the best laid plans!  I just got so caught up in the moment, I didn't stop to think about a camera until it was too late.  Hey, it happens to John Mayer too.  In all seriousness though, I hate that I don't have pictures of Ethan's first Christmas!  Luckily, I've got lots of memories, but it still bums me out.  NEXT TIME I will get the camera out before everything starts.  Or better yet, I will delegate camera duties to someone who isn't a primary caregiver!  Anyhow, the trip to Tampa was Ethan's first time away from home, and he traveled like a champ.  We left as soon as it got dark (around 6), in the hopes that since he sleeps through the night at home, he'd sleep the whole way down...and he did, there and back!  It made for a very quick trip- we've never made such good time (Clay and I usually stop, but didn't this time for fear of waking the babe). I wish I could say he slept as well while we were actually there- let's just say a Pack-n-Play is no substitute for a real crib.  And I forgot the noise machine, which I think helps him sleep better too.  But even though he was waking up more than normal, we all still got plenty of sleep.  He had a couple of nasty teething days toward the end of the trip- I felt so bad for him!  Although he'd been teething for at least a month (the drool all over everything I possess is proof), he hadn't really had any gum pain until then.  Thank goodness for Oragel!  But the crazy thing is that he hasn't had any since...?  I don't know what's up with that, but I'm certainly not complaining. 
So, since the 2010 holidays were photographically an epic fail for me, this will be a picture-free post.  But my next post will be Ethan's 4/5 month update, so it'll be FULL of photos, since I take lots of pictures when it isn't that important! ;-)  Stay tuned!!