Saturday, June 30, 2018

11 Month Little Man

What the, I was just sitting here about to procrastinate doing his first birthday post when I realized I haven't even done his 11 months.  Well then here goes.

Little Man did indeed hit 11 months!  The room was given a mini-makeover to feel more like his own, and he's done well in his own place.  He's eating a lot and sleeping pretty great and walking around like nobody's business, months earlier than either of the older two.  He has absolutely found his voice and makes it heard often, and often quite loudly.  He's still pretty easygoing most of the time but when he's upset or impatient he doesn't really hold back.
They finally booted me out of Primary but at least the company in EQ is good.
What a change half a room of color can make.

Thumbnail for a video but still so cute!  He approves of the new baby swing.
Such a fun church buddy.  Always keeps me on my toes.  Or on my feet at least.

"Yawn and Back Again," by Milo Baggins

He loves his mommy so much and is looking so big.
Okay then, next time it will be time to ready on birthday the first.  Such a big boy, full of life and personality and sweetness.

Thursday, April 26, 2018

MDG at 10 Months

It's been another month already!  Little Mister is growing so fast and keeping everyone in the family on their toes.  He's moving all over the place and yes, already walking.  He can often be seen standing up on his own and taking several steps, which is amazing and also pretty crazy.  He's a bottomless pit in the high chair, eating just about everything he's tried and always hungry for more.  He's found his wail at last, making himself heard quite often and seeming to make up for lost time, but never without reason (Feed him!  Hold him!  Put him to bed!), and never for too long.  He has this funny nasal whimper he does that makes it kind of hard to be upset at the whining, ha ha.  He's a good sport through some recent sniffles and once we put him in his own room -- blessed day! -- started sleeping through the night again.  We're thinking he would wake up in the night and see us there and be like, what the heck, why aren't you coming to get me?? when if the same thing happens in his own room he usually just realizes no one's around and goes back to sleep.  A plan has been enacted to turn sister's room into his own space.
Such a great traveler on the airplane back from CA.
First Easter!
Look at him smiling around that binky.

Supporting Mommy at her 5K.
Post-bath surprised faces.
10 months!  Look at that smile!  Look at how the hat barely fits!
Sweet boy, keep growing but stop growing.

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Easter 2018

This year's Easter was a little different in a few ways.  It fell on General Conference Sunday, so we didn't have our usual church outing (and so The Wife couldn't figure out the right time to put together her Easter outfits, which it turns out didn't arrive in time anyway).

Easter morning was as exciting as could be expected.  It's amazing how much kids get such a thrill out of plastic eggs and candy, but I so love their enthusiasm for the magical and festive.
Everybunny is having a great morning.
We opted for a family brunch situation rather than the usual dinner, just for something different and since people might start having their own evening plans.  There were eggs to be hunted and so much delicious food.
When your sister is a pro photog you sometimes get the most lovely photos of your kids at special occasions!  See her work at Blue Hill Images.
In betweentimes we visited our new favorite tradition, this cool replica of the tomb, located right here in Alpine.
So nice, but I do mean to suggest to them to change up the music loop (that is, to include more than one song in said loop).
Then we invited Mom and Dad over and joined forces with Elise & Co. for their wonderful Mediterranean feast (it does make more sense as an Easter meal when you think about it), which we might have to make a tradition if the Rs are amenable!!!
This was also the project of the weekend... Hurray, no more worrying about the giant gaps where the springs inevitably pop off every time I jumped on it.
The old ones looks so wilty compared, ha ha.
And that's all there was to it!  Julie made a marvelous angel food cake that was praised by all, the kids had a great time grounded in the purpose of the day, we caught some GC talks and discussed the news and overall enjoyed the spring weather (until it turned to winter again a few days later) (but now it's spring again so it's fine).

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

9 Months and 37 years, Pasadena and Hogwarts

It's not every day your young man turns 9 months, now is it, eh?

Or 37?

Well, Little Man and I both did, respectively, and on the same day.

It happened to coincide with a most auspicious event, a choir tour to Pasadena, which meant that The Wife and I had to take advantage of heading over to see Harry in Hollywood.  Having already experienced The Wizarding World of Harry Potter on the other coast, and visited Disneyland just a month before, it was just the right timing to finally see That Other California Park.

We flew to teeny-tiny Long Beach airport (and lost a baby toy, alas), rented teeny-tiny Kia Rio (despite their insistence that I upgrade for a larger care and my insistence that I and my very small party picked Economy size for a reason), drove DIRECTLY to the beach (which was wonderful and different from other recent beach visits), and then made our way to teeny-tiny Ramada in Pasadena (it wasn't the best place ever but they did [eventually...] have a crib, which was of utmost importance).
The front-facing camera is a game-changer I tell you.

We missed our babies!

We had some food at the impressively named Top Restaurant and the next day headed first thing to see Harry.

When we went to Universal Orlando, Harry only inhabited one of the theme parks, and I will say that based on our experience there at the time, Hollywood's version seems almost identical.  We bought our passes online which allowed us early entrance (but not free parking -- wah waaah), and this turned out to be a really great thing.  We were able to do all the big time attractions before most people even had a chance to get into the park.  The weather was great, the rides were few but fun, the experience was unique (all the escalators!) and the tour was worth is for the Bates Motel.  I had a birthday button from the very start which I'm pretty sure led to my being chosen at Ollivander's.  It was all very magical and the wand that chose me was cool but I ended up getting the Elder Wand instead (eep!).  We borrowed a friend's interactive wand so we could try that new feature, and I didn't feel AT ALL silly waving my wand and needlessly uttering incantations in front of shop windows...

Don't think I missed an opportunity to flaunt this little baby.

Or this one!

That's what we in the fandom like to call a REAlly Hidden Mickey.

Worth the hour-long backlot tour just for this set.

There was other stuff there too, like Squishee Milhouse.
Little Mister didn't seem to realize it was his 9 months, but he had a good time anyway!

I realized only too late that we were actually driving RIGHT PAST the Disney animation studio, which seems like a huge misstep on my part not to take more advantage of, but as far as I've learned we couldn't just traipse in and ask for a tour anyway.  It was enough for now to just see it, along with all the other Disney landmarks I've heard so much about (Griffith Park, Forest Lawn, etc.).

Later that night my choir met for rehearsal and dinner, which featured a lovely birthday sing-along and delicious ice cream sundae, and then the next day was the actual purpose of the trip:
Twohey's!  AKA 2ee's.  Don't ask, I don't know.

We were invited to perform a 23-minute show at ACDA.  It's a real honor to sing there, and we made the most of our time by showing just what a community choir can do -- wide vocal range, four languages, variety of style from early sacred to contemporary musical theater, and some effective and subtle choralography to top it off.  We were informed later that this ain't Utah, not just anyone gets a standing ovation, but...

We had just a few hours to wrap things up and get back to the airport, which is indeed teeny-tiny, and then head back home to see our other babies, from whom we had never until now spent a night apart, but who were safe and happy in the care of Nana and Papa.
Reunited!  And pretty happy about it!
It was nice to have another mini-vacation just a handful of weeks after our full-on family event, and baby boy did a great job on the airplane both ways, Julie was a great sport trooping along on my choir tour, and I mastered that last phrase of German that I had been struggling with.

Back home, back to work:
I wasn't there for my birthday but they decorated for when I came home all the same.

Then of course there was this...


As for Little Mister, he's still a happy healthy boy.  He's very active and crawling all over the place, he's eating plenty, he's having trouble sleeping through the night (at the time we had a plan which is now set in motion...), and he's starting to be more... vocal...  More on that in the weeks that followed.  He's really starting to prefer his mommy, especially to strangers, but he's still pleasant around relatives and friends.  He's been a champ through some sniffles and is showing real signs of more teeth appearing.  We're pretty sure he has a late-arrival birthmark, his hair is lightening considerably, and he is still tall and chubbsy.
So happy!  Even when his nose is runny!

Beach boy.

So happy!  Clever Mommy to remember to bring his li'l hat!

 Love that boy!  I was glad to share my big day with him!  See you in a couple weeks!

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Baby Girl Turns 3

Just like last year, it's hard to believe another birthday for Smoochface has come and gone.  We still call her Baby and she's more adorable than ever with her snuggles and funny faces and that little Head Tilt she does and everything, but she's definitely growing up.  She makes jokes and tells stories and has tantrums on occasion, and is generally starting to figure things out.

In the name of keeping it real, for quite a while we've had this really weird and often distressing bedtime regression where the majority of the time she just screams when we leave the room no matter what we try or do or don't try or don't do, and no matter if we gave in to the stalling tactics or ignored them completely, and though all the websites say to just let her cry it out all over again it didn't seem to be doing the trick.  It was extremely frustrating and disheartening and causing our hearts to break on the regular but we just didn't know what to do about it.  She's just generally so sweet the rest of the time but we truly dreaded bedtime.  But, at long last, we've made some progress.  We feel like she's probably just lonely, because she's fine while we're nearby, so usually one of us will just lie on the floor next to her bed and read or write or elsewise multitask, so she knows we're not there to visit or play, but to keep company while she reads and goes to sleep.  Miraculously, it has really been working, and it's absolutely worth the time spent in her room (then we get some nice companionable silence with her instead of listening to her cry for an hour or two).  Next: how to get her to stay in her bed all night, though I admit the cozy snuggly warm body in between us at night is not an unwelcome thing to wake up to on cold nights.

Anyway, back to the real business:  She is so cute and funny and sweet.  She loves Nursery, she loves her bros, she loves her mommy, and I'm glad to report she loves her daddy too.  She dropped the binky with little to no reluctance ages ago, potty training was a relative breeze, she has a good and pretty varied appetite, she gets the usual scraped knees and bonks on the noggin that come with trying to go generally faster than her little legs will allow.  She sometimes has trouble listening but also knows how to obey.  She is observant and makes relevant remarks and jokes and always wants to know what we're talking about.  She has a lot of unique interests but she's also aware of what others are doing and enjoying.  She's both average and she's extraordinary.

Great baking helper
Clearly enjoying her (and our) first ever Comic Con.  She had a princess dress when we arrived but had an Accident before we even entered the venue, immediately outside of the bathroom of course.

She made up for the lack of costume the next day.
It's like she knows she's so adorable or something.
Except when she makes faces like this lawlawlawlawl.

Yes, based on the number of stickers on these charts... I'd say she has the concept of using the potty pretty well down.
Ward choir buddy.
Sunday picnic.  Those crossed ankles!!! <3 td="">
Her smile!  (And his!)
Quoth Mommy, cool shades, girlfriend!
Noticing a startling resemblance when we introduced the kids to a certain Christmas classic.
A budding artist!  All the grandkids love Nana's watercolor corner.
If there are Christmas lights on display we will find them!
First visit to Disneyland!!!  She had her concerns the first time on the Carrousel but she shortly overcame them and to this day tells us how she was "so brave!" thereafter.
Taking a little daddy-daughter walk one morning to the esplanade to clear the motel room space and give her a little breather.
Reposting this to draw your attention to...
Heading into Narnia at another small con in Sandy.
She loves a balloon animal.  I think the remaining portion of this poor creature was only just disposed of.
Her last night as a 2-year-old. So adorable when she sleeps. *sigh*
The birthday cereal box isn't really enormous, it's just enlarged to show texture.
This cake by Mommy is so amazing!!!  She loved it so much!!!
Big birthday smiles (and a photobomb by Charlie)
Happy birthday, Smooch.  You know how to work your Daddy but he also knows how to work you (as much as anyone knows how to work a toddler, ha).  We can't wait to see what 3 means for you.