Tuesday, June 30, 2009

May Highlights in Photos

Really this post should be titled "A Month with Lilianna".  We've known Liz and her daughter Lili for awhile now, through the baby wearing group we belong too.  Jules has always been drawn to little Lili, often making her cry by attacking her with kisses and chasing her down when he was crawling and she was already walking. At a recent meet up I discovered Liz's love for Ghent, and our common link of husbands in the Navy.  Joey is gone until the fall, and she and Lili were leaving at the end of the first week in June for the summer in Chicago so we decided to pack in as much fun as we could before they left.  This meant endless days of plans, ideas, running around, day trips, BBQs on the front porch, etc.

These are a few pictures of our trip up to Mattawoman Creek Farms, a local CSA that had an open farm day.  This is where I got my first 3 tomato plants, my basil, and my pepper plants.  The kids had a ton of fun running free in the fields, and we finished up with a picnic before heading back home.

We spend many of the hot days of summer outside here at the new house, this often leads to impromptu sprinkler and hose play.  There are a couple of spots for excellent puddle jumping out front that everyone seems to love.

One of the big things we wanted to do before Liz and Lili was go strawberry picking so we could try our hand at canning.  We gathered supplies, picked some dates, and drove out to Suffolk with the babies and some friends and their babies to pick our own.  The kids nearly ate their weight in berries and all ended the day covered in the drippy juice of such fresh and ripe berries.
Snack time before hand to gather their strength.



Note the face here!

After all that hard work the babies were starving!

Photo Op

Canning is messy.

But turned out pretty awesome!

Lili doesn't like to nap so much, but she does love to help.

Relaxing while the Mama's clean up.

We decided to take a day trip up to Richmond to check out the Children's Museum.  Jules and Lili had a freaking blast - we could have easily spent 2 days there without getting to everything.  It's not a really big museum, but it's jam packed with activities inside and out.  I can't wait to get back up there again soon.

Playing mechanic.

Working at the grocery store.

Driving the ambulance.  This was by far Julians favorite part, I could barely pry him away to let other have turns and every time he caught a glimpse of it he would race off to climb back inside.  

Giant sandbox out back complete with a little guys dream - diggers!

I came across a flyer at a park/farm up in Hampton about a tractor festival that was coming up, and on a whim we decided to pack up and go.  We drove up to Williamsburg, took the car on a ferry across the way to Surry, VA, and headed into the state park that was hosting a festival.  This was right at the beginning peak of Julians interest in vehicles, and his head nearly exploded when we walked into a field of hundreds of them, watched tractor pulls, and visited with a bunch of animals.

They decided that they wanted to drive.

Watching the tractor pull.

Petting the animals at the mini petting zoo that was set up.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Bullet Points

Since it's been ages since an update I'm going to bullet point all of the biggies and hope I can cover everything.  I'll do my best to be organized about it!  Mostly this is so I have a record of new things Jules has been doing in the last 3 months.

Words, Phrases and Signs
pees (please), mo (more), dump truck, semi truck, trash truck, pee pee, poop, thank you, deep (dip), water, milk, noodles, cheese, apple, car, bath, bubbles, doggy, giraffe, moo, woof, flower, pool, ride, stroller, momo (motorcycle), toast, mama, papa, ry ry, laura, lili, stella, james, julian, nico, snack, choo choo, eat, toes, eye, shoe, diaper, strawberry, blueberry, airplane, lawn mower, trash, cheep cheep (bird), nana, library, ball, medicine, pillow, blanket

i did it, no more, luv you, all done

please, thank you, more, all done, airplane, bird, drink, eat

Motor Skills and Activities
- throws with accuracy and distance, makes baskets in his basketball hoop
- eats using both fork and spoon appropriately
- can sort shapes with his shape sorter
- makes towers with blocks 3-4 items high
- jumps and gets both feet off the ground at the same time
- can drink from an open cup with supervision
- sleeps in a big boy bed
- tries to put shoes on his feet
- climbs into chairs with books to read 
- is obsessed with rakes, shovels, vacuums, mops, and brooms
- dances wildly to music
- loves to ride on my back in the mei tei
- loves a bubble bath
- runs naked through the yard while we are working outside
- loves water, sprinklers, pools, the ocean
- isn't afraid of anything it seems, slightly wild and crazy like his papa
- gives tons of hugs and kisses when he's in the mood, to us and his friends and their mama's
- gets great joy from vanilla ice cream cones and frozen yogurt covered in fruit and sprinkles
- follows simple, one step, direction (putting something in the trash, taking something to papa)
- initiates peek-a-boo
- is a huge comedian, often doing anything he can to get a laugh
- is especially ticklish in his arm pits
- is in a huge papa phase, he is often glued to Pete's leg when he is home - following him everywhere, mimicking everything he does (including needing his turn with the Perfect Pushups)

He's slimmed down quite a bit in these last few months, and spends the majority of his days outside on the porch, in the yard or at the park/zoo/botanical gardens.  He loves to be naked and dirty and I don't mind letting him be so.  Some people think I'm crazy, but what is more fun then sitting naked in a giant mud puddle!

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Hello Again!

Our camera died on us not long after my last post, we moved and life has been mad busy since then.  I'm rarely on the computer anymore with the porch and yard calling to us, BUT, I bought a new camera this week and between that and some pictures that some fabulous friends have taken recently, I hope to get back into my blogging groove. I've definitely missed it and want to make sure to document some of the awesome things Jules is doing and saying.  So here's hoping that I'm able to get at least some pictures uploaded tomorrow morning while the crazy boy sleeps.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Frolicking at the Fun Forest

Karianne and I took the boys to a new park while we happened to already be down in Chesapeake.  It's a huge park, tons of slides, climbing features, tunnels, hiding spots, and swings all under the cover of tall trees.  James and Julian had a blast running around being wild men.  Jules is wearing his "papa hat".  I scooped up a mini version at Target for him because he is always desperate to wear Pete's even though it's too big to stay on.  Now he grins the cheesiest grin when he and Papa both wear their hats.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Zooing it with Friends

James, Ellen, Stella and Jules had a blast running around at the zoo together today.  Jules is especially in love with all things monkeys and giraffes. 

Diggers were also popular.  They are building a new Tiger enclosure and it was incredibly difficult to drag the toddlers away from the construction site.  We probably could have spent the entire afternoon watching that instead of the animals if the babies were in charge!

Finally Jules and Stella are evenly matched. 

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Just When Life is Looking Up

Just when things were starting to look up, go more smoothly, be better - wham!  Our brand new car, to us, was completely totaled in an accident barely 2 months after we bought it.  That through a major wrench in life as we have been managing all the insurance woes, as well as figuring out how to get a new car that would be just as awesome as the first one.  Sadly, the blue Matrix was 1 of 2,500 made so we had to settle a bit, but overall we found a comparable replacement.  We should be able to pick it up on Saturday so that is good.  

We also had some major house hunting to do.  We've been really unhappy in our current place for awhile.  There has been a lot of turnover in the building since we moved in 3 years ago, and the more students that move in the more noise and annoyance we are experiencing.  Luckily we found a duplex just two blocks away, in our price range, and with WAY more storage space and square footage.  We are going to be able to get in the new place starting April 7th, and we are SUPER psyched!  

I'm doing well actually, the move has given me a lot of positive energy.  I'm packing and donating and trashing like crazy.  This move is going to bring us such a welcome fresh start as a family, with more room for Baby Jules to run and play and a porch to relax in the evenings on.  The quality of our daily life is going to go WAY up and I think that is going to be very good for my mental health as well. 

I have a bunch of stuff to get posted, I'm behind again because of all the dramatic events, but slowly but surely they'll be posted:)

Friday, March 6, 2009

Spring is Here!

We took advantage of a beautiful day and met Laura and her daughter Ryan at a nearby park.  Laura rides a bike with Ryan for their local trips when weather is good, and Pete decided to take Jules for a spin to see how he liked it.  Answer:  He didn't want to get down!  Pete came back 2 or 3 times to play but Jules kept insisting he keep riding. The kids loved it.  Since I have no business being on a bike, that is going to be Pete's arena.  We've got a friend in the area who is going to pass down a seat for us, and Pete is going to start looking around for a cheap bike option so they can have some fun riding around the neighborhood together.

Ryan and Jules had a blast having the park to themselves, and you can see the well documented love between the two of them - lots of hugs and squeezes between the two of them.  Ryan will always be his first love!