Saturday, November 28, 2020

big sister, little brother

Did you notice the absence of sibling photos in Colin’s five month pics? Don’t worry, it’s just because they were so cute I though they deserved their own post!
My friend Stacey made these adorable big sister and little brother shirts for Mae and Colin. (Check out her cute shirts and awesome insulated tumblers on Instagram, Facebook, and Etsy!)
Taking photos of a 4 year old and an infant is a STRUGGLE! Between the five month photos and these sibling photos, I took over 800 shots! As soon as I bring out the camera, Mae forgets how to smile naturally and instead rocks the awkward kid grimace. It’s equally challenging to coax a smile from Colin, who mostly just stares wide-eyed at the camera. That is, until I put them next to each other! Colin face just lights up looking at Mae next to him on the blanket, and Mae giggles as he tries to reach out and kick her! I’m glad Grandma was here this week to help out with our Christmas card photos. We never would have managed a cute pic using the self-timer!

Thursday, November 26, 2020

five months of colin

Happy Thanksgiving! We celebrated Colin's 5 month birthday with a big turkey feast. It's a little before 10 pm as I write this, and I'm realizing that if I don't finish this up quickly, I might not make it to the end without falling asleep!
Our little five month old is really starting to move! He wants to be on his belly all the time. He's working on his army crawling and can use his arms to pull himself along the floor a few inches at a time. He's really motivated if his ring of plastic keys or musical jellyfish are juuust out of reach. Occasionally he'll get into a good rolling rhythm and I'll turn around to find him in a completely different part of the room. I ordered a big baby gate and some cabinet locks last week, so we'll have to do some serious baby-proofing soon!
Colin had his first few bites of baby cereal last week. I think he needs a bit more time to figure out how to eat solids, since most ended up on his face and bib! We decided to introduce cereal a little early since our biggest issue this month has been dealing with SO MUCH SPIT UP. A spitty kid who only wants to be on his belly is a recipe for mess. Oh, and the raspberries... He is determined to communicate with us through a combination of yells and wet, spitty raspberries. Thank goodness most of our main floor is hardwood and linoleum! He's always in a bib, but he usually manages to spin it backwards to wear it like a little cape.
We have experienced a bit of the dreaded 4 month sleep regression. It has manifested as Colin waking up frequently at night, but at least he usually falls back asleep as soon as I give him his pacifier. Sometimes I wish he'd just go back to sucking his thumb and let me sleep! I can't complain too much since he doesn't need bottles at night and rarely needs soothing other than the pacifier. Unfortunately, he's also stopped taking a long nap in the afternoon and prefers to take sporadic cat naps throughout the day.
Colin still likes to lay on his little pillow, but when he gets tired of it, he just does the worm on his back until he's on the floor. Then he rolls over and tries to wiggle to the nearest toy. Sometimes he lifts his head from the pillow like he's trying to sit up, but he still has some work to do on his core strength before he'll be able to sit up well!
We celebrated a quiet Thanksgiving at home today, just the 4 of us. I made all our traditional foods except we nixed the mashed potatoes for homemade egg noodles (Dan's preference.) I did still buy a pouch of instant mashed potatoes so I can make a turkey manhattan (the sandwich, not the drink) tomorrow with leftovers. We cooked the smallest turkey we could find (13.5 lbs), so we will have leftovers for DAYS! Mae is not a fan of turkey, so we'll find out how long a 4 year old can survive on cranberry sauce alone. We spent the morning watching the parade and the dog show. Mae was completely enthralled with both! We took a walk and FaceTimed Dan's family. We spent the afternoon cooking and then watched "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" after eating our turkey dinner. We bought our tree yesterday, so we're excited to decorate it tomorrow!
My goal over the next few weeks is to get lots of baby gates and locks installed! I'm having fun watching this little guy learn to move around. Can't wait to see what the next month brings.

Saturday, November 21, 2020

inflatable friends

I will always remember the summer that Mae was born as the year of Pokemon Go. There’s not much to do with a newborn other than go for walks, so I would spend hours wandering around the neighborhood collecting Pokemon. This year, with a newborn and a pandemic, the lonnnng walk has again become an essential part of our routine. I try to think of a fun destination each day, which isn’t too hard since we can easily walk to several playgrounds, a creek, some trails, some hidden paths, and even a building with a giant fish tank in the window. We’ve expanded our walking distance to 3 miles round trip, so now we can make it to the library! We just finished returned “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” and now have a book called “No, No, Kitten” that Mae can’t get through without having a massive giggle fit.

Mae was excited for our walks all through the month of October. Not only did we have tons of crisp, sunny fall days, we also made friends with all the neighborhood Halloween inflatables. She would have long “conversations” with the decorations while Dan or I provided a silly voice for them.
The tall, spooky pumpkin head is usually the first inflatable we stop to talk to on our walks. His voice is a bit gruff, but he's very chatty. Mae usually gives him an update on all her exciting life events: upcoming visits from grandma, recent outings to the library, and what items in the house Colin has managed to pee/poop/barf on.

Next, we walk to the inflatable we have lovingly named "the YMCA ghost" since he looks like he's making a big "Y" with his arms. This guy only wants to talk about food. Mae tells him about what she ate, and he always asks for us to bring him something (banana muffin, hot dog, etc.)

Further down the street, we meet up with the giant spider (who sounds a bit like Boris from Rocky and Bullwinkle). He's usually our longest conversation of the walk. I wonder what the neighbors think about us?
Happy Pumpkin greets us at the end of the street. She has a squeaky, cheery voice but rarely has much to say other than wishing us a wonderful day.

Sometimes on the way back home, we pass by the ghoul with big claws. He likes to brag about his fancy red manicure.

And lastly, we bumped into this pair of eyeballs on a particularly long walk away from our normal route. They didn't have much to say. They just stared at us.

Not pictured: the top-hat-wearing pumpkin with a very posh British accent and the Dia de los Muertos unicorn with whom we practice our very limited Spanish.

We went out for a short family walk the Sunday morning after Halloween. GranE and Batman had just left after an almost week long visit. All the inflatables were crumpled in a deflated heap on the ground, waiting to be packed away until next October. Mae was coming down off a candy high from the night before. It was all just too much. She cried and cried. The Christmas decorations can't come out soon enough.