Saturday, December 18, 2010

Busy, busy, busy...

We've all been busy lately, hence the lack of recent posts.  I've been busy getting ready for Christmas, making cards and what-not.  Cory's been busy getting everybody else ready for Christmas, hanging lights despite the dumpings of snow and the bitter, bitter cold.  And David's been busy crawling around the house, getting into everything, learning to chew Cheerios (with his one tooth), and doing this:

What is up with that goofy face?  He started doing it spontaneously about a week ago, and as is customary for most of his newly developed skills he just won't stop.  Of course, he's not being encouraged to continue by anyone.  Ahem.  Guess I'd better start practicing the phrase, "don't make that face or it might freeze that way".  Funny!

Thursday, November 25, 2010


Wanted to spend a few moments counting our blessing on this, David's first, Thanksgiving Day.  Here are a few things we are most thankful for.

This lady who eagerly gives up countless days to take care of a certain special someone.  Patt, words cannot express how grateful we are that David is safe, sound, and happy in your care day after day as we both work to provide for him.  The experiences that you give him during your days together have helped mold him into the little treasure that he is.  THANK YOU!

We are also thankful for this lady, who makes a long weekly drive to spend Tuesdays with David.  We appreciate this more than you know, not only the bonding time you have with him, but also the countless loads of dishes you have done and piles of laundry you have folded - eagerly, all so I can have more free time when I get home from work.  What you do to help us raise our son does not go unnoticed. David is so lucky to have both of his Grandma's be such an integral part of his life. THANK YOU!

Thankful as well that this guy is still around.  He's fading, I know, and that pains me.  But his tail still wags each and every day, and proving that you can teach an old dog new ticks, he is tolerating the invasion of David quite well.

We are also thankful for this giant. He couldn't stand to be in the same room with David at first and now he's like a moth to David's flame.  But then again, aren't we all.

Last but not least, we are most thankful for this little creature who has brought new purpose and meaning to our lives, and through who's eyes the big bad world looks pretty darn wonderful.  We rolled the dice and hit the jackpot, didn't we?

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

David waves

We were just relaxing in the living room this morning, me doing some picture editing on my laptop and David cruising about.  It didn't take him long to head toward the door and out of the room.  Sarcastically, I waved at David and told him "bye, bye", since he had obvious intentions of leaving without me.  My facetious tone was trumped as David turned at the doorway and waved to me for the first time. I was overjoyed, and managed to capture his second and third waves on film.

As with most of my short films, please ignore my goofy narration.  Enjoy!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Our weekend in pictures

Started out the weekend with some kisses, David's newest skill (the big, open-mouthed, slobbery kind). As you can see, I am way more into it than he is.

Headed down to Exit 76 Antique Mall for some lazy Saturday browsing.  Hit the jackpot.  Here's the loot:

This one in particular just made me smile.  Just about the sweetest thing ever.  If only it could tell stories....

We left regretting not getting a few things, but then half the fun is in the hunt and you gotta leave something for next time.

Sunday morning, Cory went to Target to do our weekly shopping while David napped and I finished cleaning the house.  Apparently, the toy aisle beckoned irresistably because Daddy came home lookin' like Santa Claus a bit early.  Look how surprised David was:

First, a crawl ball:

Second a talking-singing-mewing-barking-what-have-you electronic book.  Oh, joy!  He loves it.

Spent the rest of the day doing what we do best these days.... crawling around!

Hope everyone else had a great weekend, too!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

He's on the move

After weeks of flopping, rocking, creeping, rolling, and flailing, David is finally crawling.  Sure, it's a combination bona-fide-crawl/army-crawl, but it gets the job done.  He also successfully leans forward from a sitting position to all-fours when something strikes his fancy across the room.  And he gets there, after whatever-it-is, combining all the moves from his repertoire in a satisfactory manner until he reaches his destination.

Of course, whenever I pull out the video camera, he freezes.  But this is the best I could capture:

And, in other milestone news, I was shocked last Tuesday morning to find a sitting (and smiling) David greeting me in his crib. Obviously, he had attained this position on his own. That act went unwitnessed until yesterday, when he went from crawling to sitting right before my very eyes . Once again, no camera in hand. Oh, well.

What strikes me most is that David looks so tiny with his legs tucked up underneath his body when he's trying to crawl. Lately he has seemed so BIG to me, and to see him appear teeny and vulnerable again is pretty sweet.  And the purposeful, careful movements that he must make to stay balanced just simply melt my heart. I know that life as we know it is over now that we have an almost fully mobile child on our hands, but hasn't that been the theme of the past year? Adapting to change has become our specialty, and we will do so once again.  Watching our little one grow and develop makes any and every sacrifice worth it.

Enjoying a quiet, relaxing day at home today, just waiting to see what else the little guy has in store for us...

Monday, November 1, 2010

Happy Halloween

I managed to procrastinate David's costume search until the last minute.  So, under duress, the three of us headed out this past Saturday night to find something - anything! - for him to wear for the holiday.  It wasn't until we were standing in a Halloween store gazing at $60 (eek!) baby costumes that we looked at each other and wondered out loud, what exactly are we doing this for?  We're not really costume party-goers, never have been.  And our neighborhood usually only attracts a handful of trick-or-treaters.  Nonetheless, we gladly shelled out 20 bucks for an adorable scarecrow costume.  And all this just to dress him up for a half hour or so, merely for our own amusement. 

Worth.  Every.  Penny.

As David "enjoyed" his costume, I carved a pumpkin.  The old me (the one with boundless energy and lots and lots of free time that still lives inside me somewhere) planned on carving three, but the new me was pretty happy with just the one. 

Hope everyone had a Happy Halloween!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Our weekend...

In the midst of a fantastic, relaxing weekend and realized I hadn't updated in a while.  Where to start?

First of all, happy "seven months old" to our little David.  Here he is playing this morning in his stretchie camo PJs.  I wanted to get a picture of how cute he is in this thing before he outgrows it.  Although the outfit itself is pretty adorable, his cheesy poses and expressions obviously steal the show.

We went to Stuckey Farm last night to check out the pumpkin situation.   Didn't end up with a pumpkin, but had a nice stroll among the apple trees.  We went late in the day to avoid the heat and David was exhausted.  Thankfully, he stayed content in his front carrier, which is par for the course.  Worked on capturing the late day light with my SLR, didn't quite get the effect I wanted but still captured a few good shots nonetheless.

David has just been a ball lately.  Lots of belly laughs, smiles, chuckles, "talking", and trying to get up on all fours to crawl.  Any day now I expect him to go creeping across the floor, but for now he seems pretty satisfied to sit and play on the floor.  What huge joy in such a small little package.  Love that boy.

One side note:  I also learned this morning that life really is too short to make your own baby food.  Spent the morning washing, steaming, and pureeing carrots, thinking this would be a great way to save a few dollars a week and give David some wholesome, tasty food.  I proudly presented the final product to my customer for lunch.  Not exactly the reaction I wanted.  He ate a few bites with a neutral expression.  Then he coughed.  And sputtered.  And GAGGED.  What?  He pretty much hated it, clearly.  It wasn't as bad as his reaction to pureed chicken and gravy last week, but still pretty insulting.  Although I didn't get any pictures of this ultimate rejection, I will always remember that he did not enjoy the first meal I ever prepared for him myself.  Oh, well.  Gerber, take it away...

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Fun at the breakfast table

I'm glad I had my new pocket video camera handy this morning, because David delivered a stellar performance and I was the only witness.

After filling his belly with milk, oatmeal, and peaches, he was in a delightful mood. When such is the case, I often leave him in his highchair for a bit after breakfast so that I can get some things done in the kitchen.  Doing so today rewarded me with this, a spontaneous little game that David, on his own, decided to play with me. It's not long, but you get the idea.

I know, it's not really peek-a-boo per se, but it is clear he's figured out how to goof around and play, even when he doesn't actually have a toy in his hands. And the fact that he came up with this entirely on his own just amazes me.  What a joy!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

He's a sitter!

Can't really mark this milestone on the calender because I'm not exactly sure when it first happened.  We'll just consider it this week, though, because after sitting supported for months, David is now confidently, consistently, and enjoyably sitting on his own.

He's wanted to be upright since he was very small, always resisting the traditional cradle hold that most people assume all babies prefer. I started propping him up once he could hold his head upright, and he's been "sitting" in his highchair, Bumbo, and Exersaucer for some time now. Still, he tended to tip over every time we let go.  Finally, he is able to maintain this new position - and has discovered this is a wonderful new way to see the world.  The new playtime (and bathtime) possiblities are endless!

Of course, excitement still gets the best of him and he wobbles over, but that's OK.  How else will he learn to balance if he doesn't tip over every once in awhile? I think he secretly enjoys the free-fall. Might we have a thrill-seeker on our hands? Sometimes I wonder. Timber!

We'll continue to encourage, record, and enjoy these fabulous milestones.  I never dreamed having a baby would be so much fun!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Our first family vacation

We just wrapped up our very first getaway as a threesome in the Great Smoky Mountains of Tennessee.  It really couldn't have been any more enjoyable.

The drive down was amazingly easy.  David slept a good part of the way, and didn't really get fussy until we hit the gridlock near Gatlinburg.  Friday rush hour gridlock, I might add,  but no matter.  We quickly found our cabin nestled in the foothills near town, and settled in for the evening.

We spent the first full day exploring the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.  In the morning, Cory drove the winding Newfound Gap Road up into the mountains to our first destination within the park, Clingman's Dome.  We hiked the 0.5 mile trail up to an observation tower, pushing little David all the way.  The hike was more steep and strenuous than we had anticipated, but the pinnacle view was exhilirating and worth every huff and puff.  It was a clear day, and you could see for miles.  Despite the glory of the view and the immense beauty of our natural surroundings, the big hit in the park that day was David.  Almost everyone we passed commented on his cuteness, a running theme for a good part of our trip.  Loved it. Cory and I each took a handle on the stroller on the way back down the trail to the parking lot, a little extra insurance against a runaway David careening down the mountain.  That trail was steep!

Driving back down the mountain after our impromptu workout, we enjoyed the vistas and panoramic views of the surrounding peaks from the road.  David was asleep at this point, so we skipped some of the trails that we might have explored along the way in order to allow him a well-deserved nap. Once at the bottom, we stopped at the Sugarlands Visitor Center and picked up a National Park Passport for David.  He got his first two stamps from the ranger there.  Hopefully this will start a lifelong endeavor for him.  I want to see so many of them myself - the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, Yosemite, Arcadia, Mesa Verde - and I hope we can all do this together in the coming years.

We enjoyed a picnic lunch of summer sausage, fruit, and cheese at a charming little picnic area called Metcalf Bottoms.  Afterward, we attempted a hike to see a waterfall (Laurel Falls), but gave up and turned back when we discovered that the trail the guidebooks sold as "relatively flat" was anything but.  I guess flat is a pretty relative term in the mountains, especially when you're hauling around a 6-month-old.  There was no way we were making that hike after conquering the trail to Clingman's Dome.

We wrapped up our first day with some relaxing back at the cabin, and Cory treated me to a delicious steak dinner on the grill.  David was a champ, and went right to sleep in the portable crib without a fuss. The strange surroundings didn't seem to phase him a bit.

The next day, Cory headed out to play golf at the Gatlinburg Golf Course.  He sent back some pictures on his camera phone occasionally, and the views were spectacular. That area of the country has not suffered from the dryness that has afflicted the Midwest, so the trees were still green and the grass still lush.  Quite a welcome change of scenery from the crispiness of home.

While Cory golfed, David and I relaxed at the cabin. I even made two scrapbook pages.  It was heaven... without the distractions, I got done what might have taken me two weeks to complete at home. I enjoyed every minute of the process. When Cory returned from his golf outing, we headed back to the National Park to continue our explorations, hiking some easy nature trails. At one point along the mountain drive, I glimpsed a black bear lumbering along a wooded ridge near the side of the road.  I couldn't believe it.  No pics or videos to prove this, so everyone will just have to take my word for it.

We also tried to go to Cades Cove, an historic valley on the western side of the park known for its scenic beauty and wildlife sightings, but the road was closed due to an accident.  Regretfully, we turned back toward Gatlinburg and staged a family photo shoot at the National Park sign.  It's hard to get a baby to look at the camera when you're using a self timer, we discovered.

We spent our last evening at the cabin with a delicious dinner of grilled pork chops while catching the Colts game on TV.  So relaxing, with no agenda but to enjoy each others company. Once again, David slept soundly that night. And thankfully, so did we.

Before heading out of town, we attempted to see a bit more of the park on the Roaring Fork Motor Trail, a one-way loop touring road under Mt LeConte, the peak visible from our cabin. Although we were disappointed that the road was closed, it was a blessing in disguise.  Where we were forced to turn around was a nature trail on an old homestead, complete with reconstructed log house, log barn, grist mill, and other structures.  We wandered through the forest, exploring the pristine woodland and catching glimpses of years gone by in the crumbling stone foundations and roads.  It was gorgeous.  Couldn't catch the beauty on film like I wanted to, but the sights, scents, feelings... the whole experience will stick with me forever.  And who cares if he won't remember it, having David along for the ride (literally, in the Baby Bjorn carrier attached to Cory) made everything all the more perfect.

We're already planning our next escape.  Still, back in Indiana, we were reminded that there really is no place like home.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

David at (almost) six months

Our little man's half birthday is coming up later this week.  Since I'm short on time and energy today (both D and I have colds.... booo!), thought I'd share a little about what we're doing these days the best way I know how.... pictures!

We're doing lots of rolling around.

Making funny faces.

Making art (my latest project from Claudine Hellmuth's mixed media class on Big Picture Scrapbooking)

Scrapping, although just one page.  Guess who it's about?

Sleeping much better.  All three of us, thanks to the most important one... ;)


And just being cute.

Can't wait to see what the next six months will bring!
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