Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Charley's Six Month Photos

My sweet Charley Jane.  I just want to eat her up.

I love her crazy hair, her giant cheeks, her chubby rolls, and her wrists that look like they've been squeezed with a rubber band.  My sweet baby girl. :)

Monday, January 21, 2013

Closer to 3 than 2!

Jackson turned 2 and a half on January 9th.  Since I'm not doing monthly updates for him anymore, I wanted to jot some stuff down here that I want to remember about him.

Jackson, at two and a half you:
  • are talking all the time.  Daddy and Mommy love listening to your sweet little voice and it's always fun to see what you're going to say. 
  • are SUCH a picky eater.  You have a few things that you like and it's hard to get you to try anything else.  For breakfast you like french toast, eggs, waffles (still FROZEN!), scrambled eggs, and cereal bars.  For lunch and dinner you like macaroni and cheese, grilled cheese, peanut butter and jelly, pizza, chicken nuggets, and ravioli.  You mostly like to snack on crackers and pretzels but you eat go-gurt, applesauce, fruit and veggie pouches, dried fruit, and apples and bananas.
  • LOVE a routine.  We have playdates every Tuesday morning, music on Wednesdays and you go to PDO on Thursdays.  You do so much better when you have a predictable schedule.
  • still love Baby Signing Time.  You have close to ten videos and you know so much!  We have gone far beyond the typical sign language knowledge of babies.  You can sign the whole alphabet and know words like police officer and doctor.
  • throw a huge fit when we leave the library because you don't want to let the librarian hold your book to check it out.  Mommy has to pry it from your hands and you make a huge scene until you get it back.
  • are obsessed with puzzles.  You LOVE them.  You have about 10 that you do all the time.  You are still not able to do most jigsaw puzzles independently.  You have a couple but you never want to play with them.
  • love trains.  You want to play trains all the time.  You especially like Thomas the Tank Engine.
  • don't take naps anymore.  Bedtime and naptime are getting harder and harder because you fight it so much.  You come out of your room again and again and Mommy just keeps taking you back in.
  • take your shoes and socks off almost every time we're in the car.  Many times Mommy doesn't even put your shoes on until we get to our destination.
  • wear a size 2T and a size 4 diaper.
  • are nowhere near potty trained.  You don't care.  At all.   Mommy asks you every day if you want to sit on your potty and you always say no.  You have pottied on it twice.  But, you have also peed on the carpet twice when you got out of the bathtub.  So, we have a loooong way to go.  Come on, buddy.  You can't go to kindergarten with diapers!
  • play with Mommy's phone and know how to navigate through the whole thing.  You can find videos on youTube, find music, and watch videos.
  • have a few favorite TV shows.  You like Mickey Mouse, Bubble Guppies, Thomas, and Sesamy Street.
  • know how to throw a massive fit!  You can make Mommy and Daddy so frustrated but then after you go to bed, Mommy and Daddy smile and talk about what a sweet boy you are.
We love you so much JJ!

Sunday, January 20, 2013


Last Sunday we had a couple visitors!  Uncle Bob and Great Grandpa Clark came to stay with us for Grandpa's sister-in-law's funeral.  Aunt Doe and her family live in Joliet so it worked perfectly for them to stay with us.  After a long day of traveling, they finally arrived around 3pm.  We had a great time chatting and they loved getting to know Jackson and Charley more.
Grandpa had his hands on the kids any time there was a chance.  Bryan stayed home on Monday to go to the funeral but the other days it was so nice to have an extra set of hands.  Monday they were gone all day and came home to eat Harold's Chicken Shack fried chicken.  It was greasy and delicious.  We spent most evenings interviewing Bob and Grandpa about growing up with Dick.  I'd like to make Jackson a book all about his "Sampa" since he won't remember him.
Tuesday is the day of my moms' group so we went on with that as planned.  We were meeting other people at Little Monkey Bizness and Uncle Bob and Grandpa came with us.  They were put to work babysitting and spent a lot of the time hanging out with sleeping babies in carriers while the baby's mommy was with the other kid.  We were thankful for the extra pairs of eyes! 
After naptime, we took them to the train station so they could head to the city to meet Bryan, Marianne, and Keith for dinner.  JJ loved seeing the big train!
Wednesday we took Jackson to Monkey Joes to jump in the inflatable jump houses.  He had a blast and worked out a lot of energy.  Then we headed to downtown Naperville to walk around a bit and have lunch.  The visit went by in the blink of an eye and apparently we got no pictures of Uncle Bob.  Shoot!  There was one but it's terribly lit because of the sun so you can't see anything.  Sorry Uncle Bob!  You'll have to come back and visit again so we can get more pictures.

Here are a couple more pictures of Grandpa with the kiddos.  We love you Grandpa and we're so glad you could come see us!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

For Comparison's Sake

I had some fun comparing Charley's 6 month photos with Bryan and Jackson.  She definitely looks like her daddy!
I'm so glad she's finally smiling in the last picture.  My goodness she's a toughie.
Jackson and Charley are so similar and so different.  Jackson definitley has my eyes and Charley has Bryan's.  When I looked at his baby pictures I used to tease him about being cross eyed.  He and his mom said he "just had a wide bridge of his nose."  Now I can see it first hand.  Charley has the same thing.
It's so weird to me that Jackson was ever this young.  It makes me so sad that Charley is already turning into a big kid and she be a Terrible Two before I know it.  NO!!!!  SLOW DOWN!!!!!

Caroline Jane~ Six Months

I finally got closer to a smile this month.  Not a big one, but it's something!
Caroline Jane, at six months you:
  • weighed a little over 19 pounds at your doctor's appointment a couple weeks ago.  You had a full diaper and all your clothes on though.  Your 6 month appointment is tomorrow so I'll update when I know your new stats.
  • are loving the exersaucer.  Mommy likes it too because you stay off your head and practice using your legs.  You didn't put weight on you legs for the longest time and Momma was starting to get worried.  You do it now though!
  • are a pretty good sleeper but I have to get up a couple times a night to put your pacifier back in.  I'm only out of bed for about a minute so I don't mind doing it. 
  • really funny about naps.  You seem to sleep well every other day.  Some days you only sleep 30 minutes at a time and other days you take a nap that's two hours or more.
  • are so laid back.  You get so many compliments and people say you are the best baby ever.  We agree!
  • love your big brother.  You are really starting to watch everything he does. 
  • have had lots of baby foods.  You really like everything but your favorite thing to do is blow raspberries while you have a mouth full of food. 
  • eat solids one or two times a day.  Your bottles are typically 6 ounces each and you have 4 or 5 of them. 
  • are the absolutely sweetest little baby with a very serious attitude.  You are stingy with the laughs and smiles probaby because you are in awe of all the shenanigans your brother causes.
We love you so much baby girl!
And some outtakes:

Jackson wanted to help too.  He kept posing his bear and saying "cheese" but he jumped out of the chair before I could get his picture.  He's a goof!

Monday, January 7, 2013

1,800 Miles with a Toddler and Infant

Oh. My. Gracious.  We're back and finally recovered from the longest road trip ever.  We alternate holidays between Bryan's mom and my parents.  This year was Christmas in Kansas City so we started there which is about 500 miles each way and about 8 or 9 hours of driving each way.  We came home for 36 hours, just long enough to unpack and repack, and then left for Cincinnati to see Bryan's mom.  It took us almost 6 hours and is about 300 miles.  We stayed a couple of days and then drove to Columbus to spend New Year's Eve with Quad One, Bryan's close friends from high school.  We were so glad to be home.  We calculated on the way home that we drove over 1,800 miles and were in the car for over 30 hours.  Gross. 

The poor kids were so tired of traveling.  JJ does not ever nap well and this was no different.  He finally crashed after an exhausting trip and slept for a little over 100 miles on the way home.  His total on the whole trip was only 160 miles.  Out of 1,800!!! 

When we got home, he just kept saying, "this is a fun place" and gesturing to the house like Vanna White.  He has been so happy here.  He definitely does better with structure and routine so we are all happier now that we've got some of that back.

Aside from all the time actually in the car, we had a great trip!  It was so fun to see Mimi and all of our friends. 

Now for pictures:  I was having a ton of trouble with Blogger so these may be all out of order and not centered.  I'm not sure what was going on.  Charley became a real sitter at Mimi's house.  She's still not the most stable but she can do it!

The gift I was most excited to give was a t-shirt quilt I made for Sharon using all of Dick's shirts.  She gave me a bag of his t-shirts after he passed and I told her I would make one.  I didn't mention anything else about it.  She was so excited and shocked. It turned out great, especially for my first time making one!

 We went to EnterTRAINment Junction thanks to Mimi!  We had the "do everything" passes in our stockings and JJ loved it.  We're excited to make it a tradition and take the kids each year.  There was a kids play area with tubes and slides and this little train that Jackson was excited to ride.  The rest of the place is filled with room after room of model trains.  It was crazy impressive.  We had just seen the trains at Union Station in Kansas City and this was about ten times bigger!
On New Year's Eve we drove to Columbus for the Pancake Breakfast.  It's an Anchorman  reference and what we call our annual gathering.  It's changed quite a bit over the years as we've added spouses and kids.  We're up to five kids now!  JJ and Steven are in the first round of kids.  They enjoyed their pizza and their dinner date.
This year we added Rylan, Dean, and Charley too!  We tried to get a picture of all the kids but we were unsuccessful.  We should have recorded our attempts to get them all sitting still and looking at the camera.  Better luck next year!
Here's the Quad:  Dan, Dustin, Lee, Jeremy, and Bryan
We had a great time but we are so loving being at home now!