Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!


What a wonderful Halloween!

This was the first year Braeden really got it. He put his doctor costume on right away and was ready to go. We got Gage dressed in the orange, black, and white striped onesie with the little spider. Then we were off. We must have gone to 10 or 12 houses before heading back to our cul-de-sac. Only two of our neighbors had their lights on. We tried anyway, but they didn't come to the door. Braeden was disappointed for about 4.2 seconds then dragged me off to the next house.

He was great about saying trick-or-treat, happy halloween, and thank you at each house which made me very happy. And if people asked, he would tell them he was a doctor.


When we got back to the house we turned our outside lights on so that the trick-or-treaters would know we were home. The first time the bell rang, I passed out candy to the kids. After that, Braeden decided it was his job to pass out candy. And he was amazing. And so darling. He insisted on giving two pieces of candy to each kid. He would ask kids how old they were (or as he would say it, how many are you). He would tell kids he liked their costumes. He even told two little girls they looked cute. Near the end, when we were running low on candy, I told him he needed to give out just one piece to each kid. So when he handed out the candy, he would tell them he could only give them one piece. He took his job very, very seriously. I was so proud of how grown-up he was.

Hold your applause...

A couple of housekeeping things to get out of the way before my real post...

In the video, Gage is walking with the hungry hippo. Mom bought it for Braeden when he was around this age. She got it at a yard sale for a couple of bucks but it sells new for $30 at Target. Mom gets the greatest baby stuff at yard sales, especially one sale at a local church. I went back to see if I had video of Braeden pushing the hippo around and couldn't find any on youtube. I did find this post from December 27 (good date!) on his blog about him starting to use the hippo. It looks like Gage is getting going on the walking thing earlier than Bray did.

About the socks...size small, blue & green color combo. :) Braeden and I were snuggling last night and he remembered he didn't have the socks, so I sent him to the top of the stairs to call down to Mat who brought them right up to him. He also had them on this morning. He's a boy obsessed! And what kind of mommy would I be if I took them back now? He would be bereft! So you see, I really REALLY need those new socks!

And now on to the big news...Gage started clapping! He started doing it a week or so ago, and it's so cute. It's one of those random things he does sometimes, so it might be hard to catch it on video. Maybe this weekend I can sit him down with Braeden. If Bray claps, maybe Gage will follow suit and I can capture it on film. We've got lots going on tomorrow so this might have to be Sunday's project.

Tomorrow Mat and I are going to the Gibsonville Fire House for early voting. Braeden should be psyched to spend a little time with the fire trucks. I'm on the fence about early voting. I love getting it done early and (hopefully) avoiding long lines and wait times on Tuesday. The Fire House is a lot more convenient than our regular polling place. And it's fun that we can go all together as a family. But I think I'll miss out on that rush, that feeling of excitement you get when you vote on Election Day. I guess it won't matter too much; the important thing is to vote, right? Well, that and voting for the right guy to win!

Remember the last time we voted?? This time I promise there will be pictures! Oh, and for the presidential four years ago they had a kids voting booth...I hope they have one of those. I know Braeden would LOVE to vote. And we all know who he'll be voting for!

Did I tell you he's started saying that John McCain is a bad man? Guess who he got that from? :) And do I feel bad about it? Not in the least. He is a bad man and he would be a bad president. And don't even get me started on his running mate, a woman whose name I don't even want on my blog!

I'm getting a hair cut tomorrow and a facial! My favorite spa has hired some new people, so they're booking appointments at 30% off to give the new people exposure. Nice, huh? And I am so excited to have a few hours of "me" time tomorrow. As much as I love my boys and our special weekend times, it will be soooo nice for a few hours of quiet.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

At the dentist

Braeden was perfect at the dentist this morning. He got his teeth cleaned then flossed. And he got a fluoride treatment. There were a bunch of flavors to choose from and he picked orange. They tried to do x-rays but his mouth was too small to hold the thing.

The glasses are to shield his eyes from the bright light they use. He liked the chair that moved up and down and reclined back, but he didn't like having to lie so far back on it. I think he was worried he would fall off, but I held his hand and that relaxed him. They also had Spongebob on the TV when he walked in, so he was happy. In fact, that explains the super-intense look on his face.

At the end of the visit he had his pick of toothbrush. He had to decide between Shrek and Diego. Tough choice for a boy who loves both, but ultimately he picked Diego. It well with the Dora toothbrush we already have.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

These feet were made for walking

If I were you, I would turn the volume down pretty low on your speakers before you watch this video because some of us, and I'm not talking about Mat and Gage, are a little bit loud.


How cool was that??!!

After dinner Braeden and I were sitting in the big chair together watching Dora while Mat gave Gage a bath. I put my foot on his and he kept asking me what it was. It took me a minute to realize he was asking about my sock, my super-soft slipper sock. So I took them off and put them on his feet. He was walking around calling them his boots. He was way too cute in them not to take his picture!


Of course the socks were incredibly slippery! And that just made them more fun.


He never fell down, but he came close!


And he wore them to bed. I might never get my socks back. It's a good thing I've fallen totally in love with these LL Bean socks!! These would make an excellent early Christmas present. **hint, hint, mom**

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Preschooler food anxiety

Short post tonight...

I asked Braeden what he wanted for dinner tonight and he said macaroni then went to the pantry and pulled out a box of mac and cheese. I agreed to make that and thought we would have hot dogs too. But there was only one hot dog in the freezer. So Mat and I had hamburgers with our mac and cheese. And I steamed broccoli. I told Braeden he had to eat one piece, and he agreed.

We sat down at the table, and he wolfed down his mac and cheese and his hot dog. He drank his chocolate milk but still hadn't touched his broccoli. His one tiny piece of broccoli.

I asked him nicely to eat it. He reminded me that the last time I made him eat broccoli, he threw up. I explained that it wasn't the broccoli that made him throw up, it was the fit he threw. I told him he couldn't leave the table until he ate it. I told him he wouldn't be able to watch cartoons if he didn't eat it. And finally I told him I was taking his plate away and he could get down but I would not turn the TV on. Once I got up, he started acting like he was going to eat it, but he kept messing around with it.

So I took his plate and cleaned off his hands. He began to cry because he finally realized he wasn't going to get to watch cartoons. Mat suggested we dip the broccoli in the cheese sauce and Braeden agreed to eat it.

He was standing up in the kitchen when I fed him the piece and he started to chew it. He coughed a few times and we knew immediately that he was trying to make himself throw up. I told him not to do it, to stop. But instead he threw up on our kitchen floor. We were so, so mad at him!

We cleaned him up and sent him to time-out. Mat cleaned up the floor and I went to check on Braeden. He was doing fine but we made him stay in time-out until it was time for his bath.

I just can't believe he did this again.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Eating and sleeping

Tonight we gave baby Gage pinto beans after his yogurt. Like everything else we put on his tray, he had no idea what to do with them. I put one in his mouth and he spit it right out. But I persevered. And he ended up loving them! He must have eaten 20 of them.

It's funny to me that he isn't more into finger foods. He loves being fed purees but just isn't that interested in feeding himself. He still loves mozzarella, puffs, and cheerios. He'll eat toast and pancake but that's been about it. So pintos are a really big deal! And since he loves to be fed, I went to town this weekend cooking for him. I baked two kinds of squash, butternut and some kind of funny acorn squash shaped thing. I boiled up sweet potatoes. Then apples. And tonight I cooked corn. He hasn't tried it yet, but I hope he'll like it.

I finally broke down tonight and ordered a couple more diapers. :) Like you really had to twist my arm, right? There are four new colors of bumGenius diapers and those are our workhorse diapers. Gage always wears one at night and we send them to daycare because they're so easy for anyone to use. The only problem with them is that they used to come in just five colors--pale blue, spring green, soft yellow, white, and pale pink. And finally bG has come out with four new colors that are more vibrant shades of the existing colors. You can see the new colors here. Unfortunately bG didn't realize how high demand would be for the new colors so they're backordered everywhere. But I placed my order for ribbit and moonbeam, and when they're finally available, I'll get mine. I can't wait!

After I snuggled with Braeden in his bed, I went to open Gage's door. (His room gets really, really cold at night with the door closed.) We gave him a blanket a few nights ago. It's tucked in tightly on three sides so I don't worry about him getting wrapped up in it, but I seriously doubt he'll stay covered all night long. He moves around so much during the night. Tonight he was lying on his side under the blanket. Clutched between his arms was the taggie blanket I made him and one end was covering his face. He looked so silly. Very gently, very slowly I moved the blanket off his face and slipped quietly out of the room.

He's been waking up pretty consistently around midnight since we came back from the beach. A couple of nights we've had to bring him down to bed with us so that I could nurse him. Then he stayed in bed with us which makes both him and me very, very happy. Mat's always worried we're going to start something we can't stop, but I just can't bring myself to care. And honestly, if I worried about that I would miss out on all the good stuff!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Game day

When I lived in NY I could see all the Giants games but since moving to NC I only get to see a few games each year. Today was one of the games I got to see...Giants v. Steelers. It was a tough game but the Giants played tough defense, lucked into a safety, then FINALLY got into the endzone and pulled out the win in the end!

Braeden played outside while I watched the game with Gage.


He's young, but he's already a big fan!


Braeden ran in to give me these little white flowers from our front yard. He usually brings me one tiny bloom at a time, but today he came in with three bunches. They're weeds, so it's nice that he pulled them from the yard. And of course it's so sweet that he wants to bring me flowers. He LOVED that I put them in a glass. And I'm sure he would love to know that I posted a picture on the blog. :)

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Dinner

Tonight I made meatballs from ground turkey and cooked them in sauce. The last time I did this we made Braeden eat a meatball. He completely freaked out and it took about 45 minutes for him to finish. Tonight I gave him pasta with parmesan cheese, one meatball cut into small pieces, and a bowl of applesauce. He mixed his pasta and cheese into his applesauce! He said it was good. I just didn't want to think about it too much! Then he put a little applesauce on top of his meatball and FINALLY finished eating that too. So strange.

The cutest part of dinner, though, was when Braeden and Gage cracked each other up. Braeden started doing this silly laugh. Then Gage laughed back. So they went back and forth laughing at each other for a few minutes. It was so funny to watch, partly because it was almost like they had no idea we were there. They were completely wrapped up in each other and their little game.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Silly boy!

Quick post tonight...Braeden knows how to spell Gage's name now. And tonight I was teaching him to spell Potter.

I told him we were going out to dinner tonight and I asked him where he wanted to go. He said Arbys because we just ate there on our way home from the beach. Then he said Monterreys but I knew Mat was really tired of going there. So then he had to decide between Monterreys and Moe's. When I pushed him for an answer, he said in his most exasperated tone, "Mommy, I have to think about this." We ended up at Moe's.

We've got a busy weekend ahead of us. I wish we could just be lazy but we have tons of errands to do and Mat's parents are visiting on Sunday.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Pumpkins

A couple weeks ago Braeden came home from the grocery store with a small pumpkin. He was so proud of it he immediately put it on the dining room table. Then last week his class went to the pumpkin patch on a field trip. Isn't that cute?? And he brought home a small, white pumpkin. So that went on the table too.

When I went to the grocery store Tuesday when we got home from the beach, I bought the little gourds I love so much. I got a little bumpy one, an egg-shaped one that has a green base and an orangey-yellow top, and two baby pumpkins.

Braeden was so so excited when he saw them on the table with his two pumpkins. The white one is the momma pumpkin, the orange one is the daddy pumpkin, and the little ones are the babies.

When he eats dinner he likes to have one of the baby pumpkins on the placemat next to his plate. And he always wants one of the gourds to hold while he watches TV. Only he asks me for one of the vegetables. One of the little vegetables.

So cute!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

My boys play!

At some point my video of Braeden and Gage playing together will load on youtube and I'll post it here. Until then, just know that there is a really cute video coming of my two boys playing together. This is one of the first times they've played together without one of them freaking out or starting to cry. Sometimes Braeden plays too rough for Gage and sometimes Gage messes with Braeden's toys or knocks down his tower upsetting Braeden. But today they played so nicely together I had to run to get the camera.



I didn't realize turning the camera wouldn't automatically rotate the video I was shooting, so I'm sorry the last 15 seconds are sideways. It's like on Barefoot Contessa when she leaves the top of the cake rounded instead of leveling it off. Rounded cake=homemade and old-fashioned. Leveled-off cake=professional and boring. My videos are liked rounded cakes. :)

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Pictures from Virginia Beach

We're home! And now I can finally post all the photos I took while we were at the beach...

We actually got Braeden to wear his baseball hat a couple of times. Amazing, right? He had to wear it backwards because the wind was so strong it blew his hat down the beach.


P-Pa and Braeden fed the seagulls on the beach!


How cute are my two bigger boys in their backwards cap?!


Braeden had the best time playing in the sand. He even got his toes wet in the surf this year!


Right after dad took this picture, a big wave came in and got me. Braeden was able to get out of the way but not me. :)

More pictures

Each year we go to the beach we take a family picture. Now there's four of us!


Gage has a new trick...he bites down on the spoon when he's being fed! He and MeMa had a great time together!

Still more pictures

Cute, right?


Here's Braeden and P-Pa at the aquarium.




Gage was so cute looking at the rays and sharks in the tank.


Gage loves P-Pa's beard and hat...he was always grabbing at one or the other.

Monday, October 20, 2008

beach day

Today was our last day at the beach and we finally had some better weather. We spent a couple hours on the beach this morning. After lunch we walked down to the Neptune statue and took some pictures.

Mat and I went to dinner tonight with Abi and Jeremy, while mom and dad stayed home with the boys.

I'm about to fall asleep while typing so I'm off to bed. More tomorrow and photos too, hopefully.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Arrgh matey!

I almost forgot to blog tonight...

This will be short because Gage is asleep on my chest and I'm worried the noise from my typing will wake him.

We had a good day, a cold and windy day. The boys went down to the beach but couldn't stay more than a minute. As soon as Braeden sat down he was covered in sand. It was like a sandstorm near the ground. Mat said he was screaming. I'm sure it hurt really badly.

We went to the aquarium this afternoon. I'll post pics when I get home.

Then tonight we had a great dinner at Rock Fish, a restaurant Mat amd I ate at last year. It was our date night last year and we wanted to go back this year. It's a good thing we went tonight since they'll be closed for the season tomorrow!

Braeden and MeMa were pretending to be pirates at dinner tonight. When we got back to the hotel he kept asking her if they were still pirates. It was very sweet. He might have to be a pirate for Halloween.

It should be warmer tomorrow and less windy, so we'll get to the beach finally!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

I just cannot get over how big Braeden looks in this jacket with his hat on backward. It was so windy that Bray's hat blew off a couple of times.

We went down to the beach after lunch to fly the $5 kite Mat bought at one of the stores on the boardwalk. Turns out Braeden doesn't care too much about kites but I think Mat enjoyed it until the string broke.

Friday, October 17, 2008

on the road

We left home around 5:15 snd just got back in the car after a quick dinner at Arby's. Braeden is telling me a story about a tower that is wet and tired. (The "toy" in his kids meal was a pop-up book on the Eiffel Tower.)

Mat says we should be at Virginia Beach around 10:00 tonight. Hopefully Gage will fall asleep now that it's dark and he's nursed and eaten banana. I hope Bray will sleep some too since he'll be awake for a while once we get to the hotel.

The car is stuffed! In my list last night I forgot to mention my pump and the three or four other random bags that I had to add to our load in the few minutes before we left. We have too much stuff!!

Mom and dad are already there, and Abi and Jeremy will drive down tomorrow.

I'm posting with my blackberry so this is all I can manage for now. More tomorrow from the beach!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Packing overload!

Tomorrow we're going to the beach! We've been looking forward to the trip for a while now, especially Braeden.


I just can't believe how much stuff we're bringing with us!! Gage is going to sleep in the pack-n-play and Bray will sleep on an inflatable bed. We've got his suitcase and a bag with Gage's clothes and diapers in it. Mat and I each have a bag packed with clothes. There are a few bags with food and a bag with beach towels, extra wipes, sippy cups, and medicine. Then there's the bag with Mat's rollerblades. And the bag full of toys. And Braeden's dog. And a gift bag with birthday presents for mom and dad. We also need to bring mom and dad's advent calendar. And maybe our kitchen sink. :)

We'll be leaving tomorrow after work and coming back sometime on Tuesday. And how will I live up to the terms of my own blogging challenge? Well, I guess you'll just have to keep coming back to find out. :)

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Pictures

I've blogged before about how Braeden comes home and strips down to "just the underwear". While sometimes we get variations on that look. And yesterday he decided he had to take just his shorts off and leave the rest of his clothes on. Weird but cute, right?


I originally intended to take pictures of Gage because he was holding his own bottle and I had never seen him do that before. But of course Braeden, ham that he is, needed to be in the pictures too. I just love his face in this one. He looks soooo calm and sooo sweet.


And here's Gage holding onto his bottle. Impressive, right?


I brought the camera upstairs tonight when Mat finished Gage's bath. I just love this big, soft hooded towel, so I couldn't resist taking a ton of pictures of Gage in it. Of course he was moving in almost all of them. He crawled to the gate and pulled himself up. He was just smiling, smiling, smiling and I needed pictures of it so I sent Mat through the gate to get some. And look what he got!


Then just to cap off the night, one shot of a naked bottom!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Spelling

I promised to post more about Braeden's spelling, and here we go!

I've already told you he can spell mommy, mom, and Bob. He can also spell his name! At first the only time he was spelling his name was when we were snuggling in his bed. Since he has his name on his wall I just figured he was reading the letters, but I covered his eyes and made him spell it again. When he does it he always spells out Braeden Rhys, never just Braeden. :)

He can also spell Dylan, another of his classmates. He hasn't spelled any of his other friends names but he does do something else. He'll tell me that there are two A's in Makena. And one K. Or that Macy has a Y in her name. Or that Matthew has two T's in his name.

Cute, right?

What makes me nuts, though, is that he says Y starts with me meaning his name starts with a Y. I always explain to him that he HAS a Y in his name not that his name STARTS with a Y. But he keeps insisting that his name starts with a Y. He'll get it eventually. I'm just impressed he knows as much as he does!

Monday, October 13, 2008

More tests

Gage and I went back to the doctor this morning for his follow-up blood work. We've never had to wait more than five to ten minutes in the waiting room. But at his nine-month appointment we waited at least 20 minutes, and this morning I waited close to 30 minutes. I hate waiting but it was nice to spend that extra quiet time with Gage.

Anyway, since this wasn't a real check-up they weren't planning to put Gage on the scale. I insisted, though. So I put my baby (in just a diaper) down on the scale and waited. Mat and I have been convinced he was looking chubbier. His round cheeks seem rounder.

Two weeks ago Gage weighed 15 pounds even. This morning he weighed in at 15 pounds 10 ounces!! YEA!!

Then came the hard part. The lab tech came in with a nurse practitioner to draw blood. Last time it was just a finger prick. This time they brought the butterfly stick thing to take a vial of blood for a CBC. Gage sat on my lap and I held his right hand. The nurse practitioner held his left arm straight and the tech stuck him with the needle. (Sorry, mom.) It took a little manipulating, apparently babies' veins roll around and it's hard to actually get the needle in, but blood started to come out into the tubing that leads to the vial. Unfortunately it stopped before reaching the vial.

The tech put a spiderman bandaid on that arm and moved over to try the other. Gage didn't make a peep while she worked on his left arm. He looked curiously at the tech while she worked and he flinched once or twice but never cried or even tried to move away. I talked to him the whole time and kissed his forehead but was shocked at how quiet he was. He fussed more while she worked on the second arm. She never got any blood from his right arm and after a couple minutes of trying decided she didn't want to put him through any more.

One more spiderman bandaid and the tech and nurse practitioner left us alone. Gage was very happy to nurse while we waited for the results. Five to ten minutes later the doctor came in to tell me that there hadn't been enough blood for the CBC. No surprise there. But they checked his iron and it had gone up; it was still below the range, but the doctor said the supplement we're giving him is doing what it should. With his weight gain and the small rise in the number, she was a very happy doctor.

And I was a happy mommy to be getting out of there finally. Gage fell asleep in the car on the way to day care but woke up when I got him out of the car. I gave him his taggy blanket and put him in the crib hoping he would fall back asleep. He'd had a big morning!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

The next big thing?

This video is two weeks old by now, but really nothing has changed. Gage loves to pull up but he hasn't tried letting go yet. I don't think he'd be able to stand for longer than a couple seconds. His legs just aren't strong enough yet. But he also really enjoys walking with one of us holding onto his hands.



And here's a sweet Braeden story from tonight...

Mat was getting him dressed for bed and Gage and I came upstairs to see how things were going. Braeden told us that Mat was the daddy because he dealt with the poopy diapers. He agreed that I was the mommy because I too dealt with poopy diapers. So I asked him what makes MeMa MeMa. And what did he say? Because she loves him.

I just thought that was really cute!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

A fine fit

I was exhausted last night so I went to bed at 9:30 without pumping. And boy, was that a mistake! I woke up at 4:30 in pain but rolled over and was able to go back to sleep for another 40 minutes. When I woke up again, I was in serious agony. But only on the right side. Because that's the side that makes all the milk. Weird, right?

So, at five in the morning, while the rest of my house slept, I was sitting in the living room pumping to relieve the pressure. In no time at all I had pumped four ounces from the right and two from the left. And I still felt uncomfortable and overly full, but I knew baby Gage would be waking up soon and would need to nurse.

From now on, no matter how tired I am, I absolutely have to pump before bed!

This morning Braeden was playing with my mom's advent calendar. One of our new Christmas traditions is to exchange advent calendars (Abi, mom, and I each have one), fill it, and return it to the rightful owner. Last year I had Abi's advent to fill. Her calendar is rough because the boxes are particularly tiny. It's hard to find things small enough to fit. But this year mom has to worry about that, and I have her advent to deal with.

I bet you're wondering why I'm worried about it now on October 11. Well, I need to have it filled so I can give it to her next weekend when we meet up in Virginia Beach. Last year I shipped Abi's advent and it cost about $20 to do it. It's just easier and cheaper to take care of it now. But thanks to the advent, I'm already in the Christmas mood and am having a hard time accepting we're barely into October.

Anyway, Braeden liked opening the doors on mom's calendar. I reminded him about how much fun he had opening the advent last year. Mom had filled the calendar with things for him, like a bouncy ball, and things for me, like earrings. I wonder what Abi will do...

Braeden went in search of things that would fit in mom's calendar this morning. Pacifiers fit really well. And so do tubs of lip balm which we just call lips in our house. Small shells fit. And so do pennies. Who wouldn't love an advent calendar filled by Braeden Rhys?

That reminds me, I think tomorrow's post will be about spelling. :)

After he put the first thing in the calendar this morning he said, "That looks like a fine fit to me." Where did he get that from??

I don't want to give anything away, but I will say that I bought a few things for mom's advent on etsy which is one of my most favorite ways to kill time online. Check it out if you haven't already...you won't be disappointed!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Big changes!

I completely forgot to blog about this over the weekend but we finally made the switch...Gage was too long (if you can believe that) for his infant car seat. So now he's riding around in Braeden's convertible car seat. And what is Braeden sitting in now? A big boy booster seat, of course!


This was another of those tough for mommy moments. Like sad that Gage was starting on solids tough. Mat and I bought that infant car seat along with the giant stroller at Baby Depot while I was pregnant with Braeden. It was the first big purchase we made for him. We bought that long before we bought a crib or changing table. I remember wheeling the different strollers around, popping them closed and testing their weight to see if I would be able to lift it up and into the back of my Outlander. And I remember thinking of the tiny baby that would eventually be carried around in that little seat. And now that baby is three and a half and riding in a booster seat. After Braeden outgrew it (right around this same time), we packed it away for baby number two.

Mat probably doesn't know this, but if we had had a girl the second time around I was planning to ditch that gray car seat and buy a new girly one! :) But instead we used the car seat for another 10 months and now it's in the landfill. Mat put the seat and the two bases out for Tuesday morning's garbage pick-up. Braeden likes to watch the garbage men and when he saw them pick up the car seat, his face lit up and he laughed and laughed! I was so glad Mat and I were both right there to see his reaction.

The other hard part for me about transitioning Gage out of the infant car seat and into the convertible one was that it meant giving up my little stroller that Mat's parents gave us. I love that thing! It snaps up and pops down so easily. It's lightweight and so easy to push. I got so much use out of it while I was home with Gage. We spent a lot of time wheeling down the aisles of Target and the grocery store or walking around Alamance Crossing. But now Gage is going to be riding in the little umbrella stroller my mom got for Braeden when we went to Virginia Beach. I'm sure Gage will be happier since he'll be sitting up and looking out at the world.

Braeden LOVES his big boy booster seat! He loves that it's just for big boys. And he loves that he can reach the seat next to him so he can put toys or books there. It even has a cup holder that he can store little toys in. Not that Mat will let him have drinks in his car, but there's always mommy's car!


I hope you can see in this picture just how excited Braeden was to try out his new big boy booster seat! He was ecstatic, overjoyed, delighted. I really can't find the right word, but just look at that smile. Gage seemed pretty happy in his new seat as well.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Cartoons!!

This is hard for me to believe but I've never posted about the cartoons Braeden likes to watch!! Cartoon time is very important in our house. Braeden gets to watch TV after breakfast and after dinner (if he's gotten a green light at school, if he's been a good boy for us, and if he ate all his dinner).

He goes through these phases with cartoons. Like for weeks all he wants to watch is Spongebob. Then suddenly he's over that and wants to watch something else. For a long time after dinner he would watch Baby Looneytunes and Krypto the Superdog. I didn't care for the looneytunes but I did like Krypto and was kind of sad when he got tired of that.

My parents gave him a Blue's Clues DVD this summer so he's been into that now. We're lucky because there are two episodes on in a row in the mornings. While we get ready for work, Bray watches Blue's Clues. And he writes stuff down in his handy-dandy notebook. Or sits in his thinking chair. And if you have no idea what I'm talking about then you obviously need to watch one or one hundred episodes of Blue's.

The schedule is totally different on the weekends which Braeden doesn't understand. Usually we end watching Sprout for the good night show or the sunny side up show. Then he can watch episodes of a bunch of different shows like Bob the Builder, Fireman Sam, or Berenstein Bears. Berenstein Bears was another of his phases. He had to watch it EVERY morning! We've got several of the books and have seen some of the episodes four or five times.

My favorite of the sprout shows is Make Way for Noddy. I can't tell you how much I adore it! Noddy is a little wooden toy who lives in Toyland. He drives around this adorable red and yellow taxi and even flies a little red and yellow plane. And his clothes...his blue jingle bell hat and his yellow scarf with red polka dots just make me smile. Fortunately Braeden likes him too. Noddy isn't his favorite, but he still likes to watch him. The song sticks in my head all day. Make sure you have your speakers turned up if you visit the link above because you'll get to hear the song too! :)

Sometimes Braeden just wants to watch a video. He doesn't care what we try to tempt him with (Dora, Diego, Spongebob), it's a video or nothing else. We don't have too many for him to choose from, so I guess we need to build up our collection. He likes the Disney movies I have, Beauty and the Beast and Sleeping Beauty. He also likes Monsters, Inc. He LOVES Shrek especially the third one with the Shrek babies. In fact, I finally got to see the whole movie the other night. We watched it two nights after dinner which is how I finally got to see the end.

And on rare occasions we let Bray watch cartoons in the middle of the day on a weekend. Like if it's raining, or one of us is sick. And sometimes he watches football or tennis with me. Or music videos or autocross or formula one racing with Mat. He likes the funny-looking cars racing around the track. And I like the noise they make.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

A challenge

I've decided I haven't been a very good blogger since I started back to work. My boys do hundreds (at least) of cute things each day and I'm not slowing down long enough to chronicle them.

So, I've issued myself a challenge. I am going to blog EVERY single day for ONE whole month. There will be a post on one blog or another every day from now on. I tend to filter myself and only post things that are big or momentous when the little every day stuff is often more fun or certainly just as important.

Maybe someone else (ahem, ET) will want to jump on my bandwagon and give this a try, too!

Anyway, tonight I'm playing Keno which leaves Mat home with the boys. I think he and Braeden will have bean burritos for dinner. It's easy and they both love them. We had Mat's standard home alone without mommy dinner--chicken nuggets and biscuits--Tuesday night. Then last night I made parmesan chicken for dinner. Partway through breading the chicken pieces I realized it was practically the same thing as we'd had the night before. I felt a little ridiculous. Of course, my homemade chicken nuggets are sooo much better than the frozen ones from the box so it was okay. Right?

Braeden wouldn't eat his chicken, though, because it had black on it. Or so he said. The nuggets were browned because I cooked them in a little olive oil, but to him that's black. And he's convinced he doesn't like black. We gave him ketchup but he mixed his jasmine rice into that. Then he started dipping his finger in the ketchup and licking it off. Gross. We told him if he didn't eat his chicken, he wouldn't get to watch cartoons, he wouldn't get any toys in his bath, and he wouldn't get to read a story before bed. He started wailing so we sent him to time-out. Finally he came back to the table and announced he would try the chicken.

When he says that you know you're golden. He's going to eat whatever it is. He gets this silly smile on his face as he brings the chicken slooooowly to his mouth. And he watches you the whole time to see how you're going to react. When he finally gets the chicken in his mouth, he'll say hmmm, I like it. (Just like in Green Eggs & Ham) He's so ridiculous but so sweet too. But it makes us crazy because it will take him 45 minutes to eat his dinner. Then he gets upset when he can't watch cartoons because he's used up all his cartoon-watching time.

Have I posted about Gage's yogurt? I can't remember. He LOVES it! Or he loves it when I give it to him. Mat's tried once or twice and Gage doesn't eat it for him. I don't think it's the yogurt that's the problem, I think Gage is just tired or really hungry when Mat's trying to give it to him so he reacts so badly to it.

So that's it for today. I'm at work or I would post some pictures I took earlier this week. I also have a video I need to upload to youtube. I'll save that for tomorrow, I guess.

Every day, people. Every single day. :)

Monday, October 6, 2008

Eating together

Tonight I was planning to cook a few peaches we bought this weekend at the grocery store. Well, I guess peach season is really over. I peeled the first one and it was nasty inside. But two of the four were fine, so I cut them up and started boiling them. But it's hardly worth cooking two little peaches, so I cut up a butternut squash I had bought a couple weeks ago and threw that in too. It turned out really, really well! Mat was a little grossed out but I guess it helps that I love squash.

It's a good thing this worked out for us. Gage hasn't been great about eating finger foods. He loves cheerios and puffs, toast, pancakes, and shredded mozzarella cheese. Mat's tried giving him string cheese cut up in small pieces. One time he ate it and the next he just pushed it around the tray. He hasn't been interested in eating bits of banana or veggies though. He ate a bunch of peas one night then wouldn't eat them the next time.

We bought yogurt this weekend, and he loves it! We started with the stonyfield yobaby yogurt. The six-pack comes in vanilla and banana. When we give him yogurt, we've been starting with some pureed fruit or veggies then giving him half a container of the yogurt. This weekend we'll buy regular yogurt and see how Gage likes that. The yobaby stuff is just too expensive!!

He loves being fed. Maybe he's just lazy! :)

After he finishes his dinner, we give him some apple juice in a sippy with the iron supplement in it. He loves his juice and his sippy! He really loves bangng the sippy on the high chair tray.

One day last week I had made macaroni and cheese. I cooked some extra elbows and cut them in half for Gage. He ate a few but just didn't seem to care for them. Over the weekend we had leftover macaroni and cheese one day for lunch. I gave Gage a little bite of mine and he loved it! So we all ate mac and cheese for lunch that day. :)

Thursday, October 2, 2008

The things he says

Here's a cute, quick story about Braeden...I made Mat write this one up because he knows the book and was there to have the conversation with Mat.

So Bray has a book (I think it is called “Giggle Giggle Quack”) that he likes very much and he and I have read it many times. Basically, the story centers on a farmer who goes on vacation and leaves his brother in charge of the farm. The farmer leaves the brother handwritten notes describing how to care for the animals. During the story, the brother is fooled by a crafty barnyard duck, who replaces the farmer’s notes with all sorts of silly instructions of his own design (telling the brother to order pizza for the hens, bathe the pigs in the house tub with the farmer’s special bubble bath, etc.). Anyway, before the farmer leaves for his vacation, he (ominously) tells the brother to “Keep an eye on duck, he’s a bad influence on the cows.” In our hallway, we have a nightlight that Gage is a little obsessed with. He always wants to play with it, and Bray enjoys playing sheriff and yelling at him about not screwing around with it. At one point this weekend, Bray told me to “Keep an eye on Gage, he’s a bad influence on the nightlight.”

goodmama, good baby

I'm headed to NYC tomorrow for a whirlwind work trip and I'm up way too late, but I wanted to post these pictures that I took days ago...Gage in his sky blue goodmama.