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Sunday, February 28, 2010

Weekend Update

We have had a nice, low-key weekend. Friday was a great Mommy-Jackson day :) We ran some fun errands (well, I thought so and Jackson seemed happy to accompany me!) and had lunch at Panera. After we got home from our morning outing, I was downstairs checking e-mail and it seemed awfully quiet upstairs... I actually wasn't too worried that there was trouble, I was nervous Jackson has fallen asleep! Sometimes he naps in the morning, and sometimes he just has quiet time. I never really know unless we are in the car mid-morning. If he starts to fall asleep earlier than usual, then I know he just had quiet time. This was the case on Friday! I had to bring in Jackson's car seat to adjust the straps to a higher slot (too windy to stand outside and do!) and Jackson was having the best time with his car seat inside! When I got upstairs to check on him, I found Jackson just relaxing in his seat with his truck. So funny!

Yesterday Jackson and I went to our friend Lily's first birthday party! Jackson had a good time playing with Lily's toys. He especially liked sharing her really cool push-cart! He also enjoyed sharing my piece of cake--the frosting was a particular winner! Last night we had a family date to Firehouse Subs for dinner. Jackson had a great time watching all of the going-ons. The chip rack needed to be re-filled while we were there--oh, such entertainment!

Today has been a nice hang-around-the-house day. The biggest excitement so far has been trying on Paxton's collar! Jackson loves playing Paxie's tags, and he seemed so excited to have them around his own neck. Paxton was a gracious big brother and shared his collar for quite a while...

We are meeting James and his mom and dad for dinner and some hang-out time later. We will also go out and enjoy the somewhat nice weather! That's right, the snow is definitely melting! We are welcoming March with open arms :)

Saturday, February 27, 2010

End-of-February Update

New things Jackson likes to/can do:

***I think he is meowing! One of his favorite books is Open the Barn Door. It is a teeny board book that I bought just to keep in the diaper bag. He had a little lift-the-flap one for Halloween that he LOVED and kept him entertained when we were out. After the holidays were over my mom and I went looking for a non-holiday one, and this was the only one we could find. Little did we know it would become a favorite :) This is almost always the book Jackson brings over when he wants to read a story! All it is is a different animal on each page. The sound the animal makes is on one page and a flap with the corresponding animal under it is on the facing page. Anyways, when we get to the cat page, he almost always makes a sound that sounds like a meow! On a related note, he also loved Doggies by Sandra Boynton. He will woof during that book sometimes :)

***I beep-beep his nose whenever I poke it, and he has started doing the same thing to us!

***I taught Jackson the rhyme for The Itsy Bitsy Spider and he not only loves when I do it, but he will lie on his changing table with his little fingers pressed together and make them dance up the spout! SOOO cute!

***If Jackson brings me a book while I'm getting lunch or dinner ready, I will stop to read it to him once or twice, but not a whole bunch of times. Since the books are super short at this stage, I just squat down to read it. Jackson doesn't care that I'm not sitting all the way on the floor, he will situate himself between my legs just like if he was sitting on my lap! He is such a snuggler when he sits still long enough!

***Not only do we get kisses now, we get hugs! It is super cute! If you squat down to his level and ask for a hug he will run over with his arms out, grab your shirt or shoulders, and squeeze a little!

Friday, February 26, 2010

Thursday Fun!

The boys enjoyed a snack to-go on our walk on Thursday! They seemed to quite enjoy this novelty :)

We are battling another super bad case of diaper rash :( It just snuck up on us! I'm hoping the culprit is not pineapple, because Jackson loves it these days! To not be able to give him mandarin oranges OR pineapple because of the diaper rash repercussions would be sad :( Plus, those are the two fruits that come pre-cut! LOL

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Things I Love Thursday

Apparently there is a whole community of bloggers sharing things they love on Thursdays! I love it! Here is my first attempt. I am sharing one thing I love and one thing Jackson loves.

My newest love is this amazingly yummy drink from Seattle's Best Coffee! We go to Borders each Monday for storytime and Seattle's Best hosts the cafe in the bookstore. I am usually a Chai Latte girl, but this is a different spin that is almost yummier!

We had good luck at the library yesterday and one of the books we checked out is:
It is so cute and Jackson really seemed into it when we read it at bedtime last night!

Check out more favorite things at: Diaper Diaries!

Seen Around the House

I'm embarrassed to say that Jackson's favorite toy upstairs is the toilet brush! LOL He found it in the bathroom one day and was hooked... I bought new ones the other day and he grabbed them out of the bag and walked around like this for a good, long while!

Paxton has been much more cuddly lately, which we LOVE! He especially likes to sit down near us when we are reading a story. Perhaps I should get him a library card?

James was having a sit in Jackson's little chair yesterday, but of course Jackson wanted in on the action. They seemed pretty excited about sitting together :)

This truck was Jackson's first favorite toy from early on. He has kept enjoying it, but recently it is always in his hand! Especially in the morning. It is the first toy he goes to get after finishing breakfast. The reason this picture is funny is that I got out my camera to take a picture of him with his favorite truck (he was especially cute this morning) and he ran over to his chair for me to take the picture there. Apparently he has caught on that this is a good picture-taking spot!

This week has been pretty quiet and uneventful. We went to storytime on Monday and both boys colored in pictures of ladybugs! It was really cute :) I experimented with Jackson coloring last week when I took him by himself. This week I figured we might as well give it a shot with both boys coloring! It was cute and fun!

The weather has been a bit warmer so the snow is melting, slowly but surely. Since school is back in session, the sidewalks on our main street are plowed nicely. This lets us get out for shorter walks. It's still a little challenging, but better than nothing!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The Blogging Community

I have been thinking a lot about blogs and both their purpose and audience. I read quite a few blogs on a regular basis. I also continue to be surprised when someone totally unexpected admits that they follow MY blog! I LOVE finding that out! I started our family blog when we found out we were pregnant. I knew that I would want a record of the whole experience, but I also took a gamble and thought our families that weren't with us each day would like to read along as well. Once Jackson was born, my blogging slowed down a little, but I still wanted to continue recording the new things that happened in our life. There are many woman who host blogs devoted to menu-planning, recipe sharing, organizing, and money saving. I LOVE "flipping through" those blogs for new ideas! I have also found a large group of families that blog about the adoption process. I find this fascinating! I stumbled upon one through a link on a friend's blog and have just clicked along through many amazing stories. Josh makes fun of me about reading some blogs of people I don't know. The main reason I continue reading some after I accidentally find them is to gather new and different ideas for my job: being a mom. That helped him make sense of all of this blog reading :)

I also think it's interesting to think about the friendships of blogs. My college roommate, Allison, and I have kept in pretty good touch since college ended. But, our blogs have helped us stay even closer! She was a steady reader of mine while I was pregnant and I have loved reading along with her pregnancy! Some other good friends from college also have blogs now. Brandi and Becca are using their blogs to update their family members since they all live across the country. Blogs definitely allow you to become closer with people. Emily was in my cohort in college and we were definitely friendly, but we didn't really keep up except for the occasional Facebook message in the past years. However, now that we both have babies and blogs, we have a new venue to share ideas and our lives. (She made my super cute new banner, by the way!) I have become what I would call friends with a few other ladies through their blogs. I found them through friends of friends, but have been so struck by what they said that I just had to let them know I was reading along and post some comments! Both Shadley and Emily seem to appreciate any and all comments, so this had led to some fun sharing of ideas! I also think blogging is a great way for travelers to share pictures and updates. We have some family friends who are in the Peace Corps and it is so interesting reading about what they are doing!

This is not necessarily another suggestion for comments, but do feel free to read along and post your thoughts!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Middle of the Night Photography

I just checked in on Jackson and this is how he was situated! It first struck me how cute he was, but then I saw his sock missing! Poor little guy :(

Adventures in Food

Jackson had a pretty awesome eating day! He started out with a bowl of 2T oatmeal mixed with a tub of banana and mixed berries. He then ate a whole piece of peanut butter toast, a few bites of another piece, and a few handfuls of Kix. For lunch he scarfed down two big veggie pancakes, a YoBaby meal (yogurt, fruit, and veggie in one), and a ton of grapes! He had a big snack of more grapes and a bunch of yogurt melts (we were waiting for Petey to have her oil changed and yogurt melts made him quite a patient guy), so dinner wasn't so big. He just had a tub of the Gerber ravioli (he LOVES that stuff), a few pieces of pear, and some graham Goldfish. That is a great day for him!

He is back to drinking really well too! Phew! He had been doing so great with his cup and then he got sick :( Apparently he doesn't like to drink a lot when he doesn't feel well...?

I'm sad to say my experiment failed :( I was hoping to get away from buying the "toddler" ravioli and just make normal ravioli. I tried just giving them to him, but Jackson didn't fall for it. I saved some of the toddler tubs and put the "regular" ravioli in there along with some chicken broth since that's what the toddler ravioli sits in. He at least picked one up before handing it back to me. *Sigh* I can't say I didn't try!

Next up: sweet potato pancakes!


Yes, this blog is about more than a shameless plug for my awesome Cousin Amy's kids' books! But, seriously, she has a ton of books out now and they are all fabulous! I can't wait to go buy Jackson the newest one: The Wonder Book.

This is relevant to Jackson because he is consistently using a spoon all by himself!!! Josh was starting to wonder about some milestones he should be hitting soon and using a spoon was one of them. The fact that our sweet boy wasn't using a spoon yet was entirely my work. I didn't want to deal with the mess. Be honest, is anyone surprised by that? I didn't think so :P Anyways, I decided to bite the bullet and see what happened. I handed over a spoon the other day and he just took off with it! Well, not literally! In the first sitting he ate a whole tub of applesauce by himself. That same afternoon he polished off a tub of fruit and a yogurt with Josh! He is doing really great and you can tell that he is proud of himself :)

On a related eating note, I am also working with Jackson to use plates and bowls during meals and snacks. I gave him his grapes for lunch in a little bowl yesterday and he loved that! Towards the end, he dumped them out on to his tray and took turns eating them and putting them back in the bowl. When he finished those, I sprinkled some veggie Goldfish into the bowl. He was really excited about that too! He definitely made up a little game for himself where he would dump them out, eat one, put them all back in the bowl, eat one, and repeat!

On a related game-making-up-note, Jackson had a silly game in his bedroom yesterday after his nap with his books. He has this super cute stuffed firetruck that was a hand-me-down Easter basket. It is perfect for holding a few board books near the glider. He would take out one book, hand it to me, let me read the title, take out another book, put that book on the stool so he could knock the first book out of my hand, pick up the second book, hand it to me, and repeat. He did it for all of the books and after he gave me a new one he would put one hand up by his ear like, "All done!" Not sure what the point was since we didn't actually read one whole book, but he enjoyed himself!

As you can see, Jackson is in the spirit of the Winter Olympics and has chosen snowboarding as his sport of choice :)

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

President's Day Weekend

Yesterday I took Jackson to story time by himself for the first time! It is still a great outing when James is with us, but it was fun to go just Mommy and Jackson :) We haven't done much in the way of experimenting with crayons, so Jackson tried it out at the end of story time. He colored a little of the dinosaur picture and then got a sticker! He is pretty excited that I put his picture on the fridge :)

We had a great weekend, overall. We are getting used to having Josh home for extended periods of time...Yesterday was our first non-cranky day for a few days. It was great! I'm hoping that Jackson was just finishing getting whatever sickness out of his body that might still be lingering. His rash was pretty much the same as of Friday but I decided not to take him in since he seemed ok otherwise. That was a good decision since Saturday morning his face, back, and tummy were like new again! It was magic! Over the last couple of days his arms and legs have gotten better too. Everything just worked its way out! He still is a little congested from his cold, but it's also just that yucky time of year when everything is so dry. Glad to have that behind us!

We had a nice, low-key Valentine's Day. We definitely don't make a big deal about anything, but Josh and I started the tradition a few years ago to have dinner at Chipotle. This year we changed it to Qdoba since there is one close by and we had a coupon :) Josh and Jackson woke me up in the morning with a homemade card and then Josh ran out to get our favorite breakfast burritos for brunch! Jackson and I had a trip to the grocery store, we took a family walk, and then we left for our family dinner!

Jackson was super cute yesterday! He had such a good time playing with Paxton yesterday--mostly the playing consisted of Jackson following Pax around trying to give kisses! Jackson also enjoyed kissing Daddy through the railing of the stairs for each stair he went up! So cute! He has continued to be super snuggly today too--I love it!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day!

Happy Valentine's Day!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

February Fun!

February 8, 2009

February 7, 2010

Jackson's Winter Entertainment

Snotorious B.I.G. Makes a Comeback

Tuesday night did go pretty well. Jackson seemed to have a good night and was in pretty good spirits Wednesday morning, despite the fact that I thought his rash was spreading... Wednesday night was hands down the worst night we have had with him! Around 10:30pm he started fussing and every 10-15 minutes would fuss again for his pacis. Around 11:30 he just got really upset and stayed that way until 3:30am!!! Josh and I were exhausted and despite the fact that Jackson MUST have been exhausted himself, he still woke up around 6am and did his very best to protest a morning nap. The afternoon nap didn't go well either... We decided to stop the Benadryl because it might have been the cause of all of this. Sudafed and Benadryl do not do good things to me and I suspected it might have the same effect on Mr. J. I feel so bad for him if had the feeling Wednesday night of wanting to crawl out of his skin or being so tired and not being able to sleep! I did call the doctor and asked for a nurse to call me back just to run things by her. She agreed that every once in a great while there is a child that gets hyped up from Benadryl instead of calmed down. She suggested not giving him a dose before bedtime and waiting until Friday morning to see how his rash looked. Thursday night went SO much better! I definitely think we made the right choice by stopping the Benadryl! He did start itching a tad more, but the Aquaphor seems to have soothed that. His rash looks much better today...finally! It's definitely working its way down (and out hopefully!). His face, back, and tummy are looking good. His arms are better. His legs and bottom are the worst now. They were the last part to get the rash, though.
We went for a walk through the woods on Thursday, and that was a work out! Phew! This picture doesn't do it justice, but the snow hit me mid-thigh and Paxton's belly was even sinking in when he bounced around!

Jackson is all ready to head out! A friend passed along the tip of putting too-big socks over shoes to help with protection against the snow. Part of our problem the other day was Jackson's shoe fell off right away! This prevented that problem and kept any snow from sneaking into his shoes or up his pantlegs!

Getting ready to head outside!

Mommy and Jackson with their first sleds!

Jackson LOVED this for a short few minutes... It was super cute!

The roads are looking much better and trucks are out improving the initial plow jobs. Josh went to work yesterday for the first time since last Thursday! Not too bad to go in for one day and then have a three day weekend! BUT, wait for it...wait for it... there is MORE snow in the forecast for Monday!!! Seriously?!

For entertainment purposes, here are other nicknames floating around for our lovely snow storms: Snowpocalypse, Snowmaggedon, Snowbowl, Snowbliteration, Catastrasnow, SnoWTF?, Pande-snodium, and Tsnownami.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Snoverkill? Snow Joke!

We knew while we were watching the snow fall...and fall...and fall... over the weekend that there was more snow in the forecast for midweek. The prediction early on was about four or five more inches. Eh...not great, but not too bad. After 26, what's another few? The prediction kept upping: 6-8, 8-10, 10-20! What?! Oy! Sure enough, the snow began falling about 4:30 this afternoon. This was while I was on my way to the pediatrician with Jackson (more on that later). By the time we were on our way home, about an hour and a half later, the roads already stunk! Again! The plows didn't do such a fancy job to begin with, but the added layer of snow made it tricky to see where the "good" spots were to drive! As I sit typing this about five hours after this snow started, we have at least a few inches!!! It's supposed to keep snowing until tomorrow night!!!

Well, days four and five of Snotorious B.I.G. have been a bit quieter. The federal government closed yesterday and today so Josh had two snow days home with us! Woo hoo!!! We fully intended to make another go at sledding, but Jackson has had some irritation building on his cheeks and we didn't think being IN the snow was the best idea. We did take a nice walk through the neighborhood with Paxie. It was interesting to observe people's strategies of clearing snow out of their parking spots and off of their cars...

I thought the irritation on Jackson's cheeks was leftover from all of the cold junk that had leaked out of him last week. He has been going full force with the paci since he hasn't felt good and I just figured all that gunk built up and irritated him. However, I started to notice Sunday night and yesterday that he was getting larger red patches on his cheeks. He also had quite a good rash on his tummy. He has had heat rashes (for lack of a better term) from time to time and the doctor even saw one once and said not to worry. We chalked it up to a random irritation. Yesterday I thought he was getting worse as the rash spread from his cheeks behind his ears. I called the pediatrician and a nurse called me back pretty quickly. She understood that I was trying to make a good decision based on the fact that we were getting large amounts of snow again in the near future! She wasn't sure what the rash was from my description, but said monitoring it would be just fine. She also suggested some hydrocortisone cream. We let him air out during the day, but I put some of the cream on before bed.

Last night did not go well :( The poor little guy was up every couple of hours just very unhappy! Today he had some more lethargic bouts similar to last week before I took him in. I really struggled because I thought the rash was looking pretty bad, but I haven't seen that many rashes. Maybe it was just a normal rash? I certainly don't want to have myself pegged as a paranoid parent that runs to the doctor for everything out of the ordinary. I also wasn't sure if I'd be making as big of a deal of this if the snow wasn't coming. After more naps than usual and seeing the rash spread to his back and legs, I decided to call and make an appointment. They got us in late this afternoon and boy am I glad I went! Jackson was having an allergic reaction to the amoxicillan!!! It seems odd to us that it took so long to show up (almost a week), but the doc was pretty confident! He checked Jackson's ears and throat and everything seems to have cleared up! Yay! He said to stop the amoxicillan, start Benadryl every 6-8 hours until Friday, do oatmeal baths, and use Aquaphor to soothe his skin. By the time we got home, it was 6:00--normal bedtime for this little guy! I gave him a quick dinner and then let him soak in the oatmeal bath. As I was soaking his poor, red cheeks with a washcloth, I think he was starting to fall asleep in the tub! I slathered him up with the Aquaphor and he seemed more comfy already! Phew! More Benadryl at 11 tonight and hopefully a more restful sleep for all of us!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Snotorious B.I.G.: Day 3

This was actually Jackson's first time walking outside! I hadn't realized that until I set him down between our snow piles! He LOVED it! I was hoping that letting him walk on the clear sidewalk amongst the snow would help him enjoy playing IN the snow more!

Saying, "Hi!" to the neighbor shoveling!

Off to go sledding!

First sledding run with Daddy! This one was MUCH more enjoyable than the one on Christmas Eve! Phew! He made lots of runs with Josh and me, but his shoe came off on his first go with me, so his tootsies were a bit chilly by the end...


Snow day three was a very fun day! We were all glad Josh wasn't spending the day shoveling out our family like many of our neighbors. He was out for a few stints to clear out a few spots, but for the most part, we got to enjoy the sunny snow day! Sledding was a BIG hit! Jackson was definitely ready for a nap when we got home, and he took a nice, long one! He actually has had wonderfully long morning AND afternoon naps yesterday and today! I can only imagine how overtired he really was for most of January when he was taking one hour long nap! Poor little guy! At least I know we were on the right track for fixing his problem! We enjoyed watching the Super Bowl at the end of the day! We had some yummy snacks, chili, honey corn bread, and milkshakes for our festive little party! We were also quite happy with the outcome of the Saints winning!!! The highlight of the evening was Josh learning that the government was officially closed for Monday! Yippee!!!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Snotorious B.I.G.: Day 2

The deck this morning--about 18 inches and the snow was showing no signs of slowing down!

It was my turn to sleep in this morning, and this is what I woke up to! Josh had already gotten a good start on shoveling by then and I went out to help him. Jackson was a great supervisor! He hung out by the door (inside!) pretty much the whole time we were both outside and had the best seat in the house. His favorite was watching a very nice neighbor make multiple passes with his snow blower :) Josh got both of our parking spots shoveled out while working to keep the sidewalks clear. It was really hard to stay ahead of the snow! He also helped our neighbor across the street shovel out his car. Even though they hadn't started on their properties themselves, Josh also started shoveling out the sidewalks of the neighbors on both sides of us!

Enjoying the show :)

The front of our house with the snow that had already fallen in addition to the snow Josh shoveled out of our parking spots!

Willowdale Court to the right...

...and Willowdale Court to the left!

You can just make out Josh's head and his orange coat! This is from our living room looking out into the street. The snow pile is so high in front of the house that we can't see Petey!

It finally stopped snowing by 6pm! We had a total of 26 inches!!!

Snow day two was just as much fun as the first :) Josh did work MUCH harder, but he was pleased with his decision to most of the heavy-duty shoveling today! We did not get out for a walk because the snow was falling pretty heavily most of the day, and Josh was busy shoveling or resting before shoveling some more! Josh made another yummy dinner consisting of BBQ chicken and more fries for the leftover dipping sauce! Then it was an early bedtime for him and time to catch up on TV for me!