Friday, December 05, 2008

So Much To Say

Two Very Cute, But Somewhat Lame Pics of My Boys

Today is Friday, December 12th, 2008.
I started writing this blog entry in pieces about a week ago and had to go look on the calendar to try to jog my memory of what important (well, important to me, anyhow) kind of things have been happening.

I am WAY behind on catching up. There's so much to say.

Tonight (Dec. 12th), I ran out to do some errands and left Daddy home with the two boys. I came back with gingerbread men to decorate with AJ when I got home. He's been staying up kind of late the last week or so because I keep loving his nap too much and letting him sleep until 3:30, from about 1:30!!! He should probably only be napping from 1-1:30, so that he'll fall asleep at a reasonable time, like 8:00pm. Oh well, the mom-time is nice during the day while the two boys nap, and AJ's been good and getting some nice time with Richard and I.

I'll have to be good next week though and wake him at a reasonable time from his naps or else Richard and I will forget what it's like to have mommy and daddy time in the evenings.

Let me start by mentioning that on Wednesday (Dec. 3rd), something happened to both AJ and Dexter. They both grew up just a little bit more. AJ was being more obedient, more pleasant, less whiny, and bumped up his vocabulary a few notches, even fixing some of his mispronunciations just out of the blue. For instance, he started saying 'yes I am' instead of 'yes I man', and he started anunciating and almost correcting his lisp saying 'sssssnake' instead of 'thnake' or 'nake'. He also started adding more detail, description, explanation, and story telling. This was even noticeable to Auntie Kim without me mentioning anything. Dexter started babbling continuously. AJ never really babble. He had lots of vocabulary, but didn't really babble much unless he was just in his exersaucer entertaining himself. But Dexter is 'talking' non-stop. 'Talking' is in quotations because I want to be sure that I am not implying that he is actually talking. Sure he says 'mama' and 'dada' and 'hi', and evidently, 'AJ', but I just mean he is constantly babbling and he thinks that he's talking.

Let's get on with the catch up now.


Pointing - If I didn't already mention this, back in October, Dexter began pointing. He loves to point at things in books because he knows you will say the word for the item. He points all over the place.

Books - Loves them. Rather, he loves looking through them and pointing at things all by himself. Yes, he likes to sit and listen to stories, but he is sooooo happy just to sit and turn pages of his board books. It's somewhat sad sometimes and makes me feel guilty if I'm not down on the floor with him.

Crawling - This is nothing new, of course, but man is he fast.

Cruising - Well, this has now progressed to standing alone for a few seconds, and he's started letting go more often to grab the next piece of furniture he'd like to move to. He might be walking if we stayed home more, but that's not going to happen. I'm thinking he'll be walking by his first birthday.
His First Birthday - It's right around the corner! He'll be 11 months old in 10 days and we've already booked his first birthday party! We'll do a BIG party at Captain Kids like we did at the pool for AJ's first birthday and then I'll invite family for cake and tea the next day.
-Since starting this entry, Dexter can walk very well, holding just one finger of mine by only one hand of his, and he's beginning to let go of furniture a lot more. I think there could be a first step maybe even this weekend.

Shape Sorters and His Fridge Farm - Somewhere around 10 months old, just a little before, Dexter really started to love shape sorters, and his fridge farm. He loves to fit things into things. He loves when he actually succeeds at fitting an animal piece into the appropriate place!

Clapping - Oddly, still no clapping. No consistent waving either. Oh well. He can turn off his light switch!!

Talking - I keep thinking that AJ's saying something to me, and when I don't know what he said I'll say, "Pardon me?", only to realize that it was Dexter babbling something. He sounds just like he's talking.

Happy - Yup, he's still always smiling.

The Ball Blaster - Around the 19th of November, he started accomplishing the feat of putting balls into the ball blaster toy mouth. He was very proud. This led to him putting blocks into his Peek A Block Farm and items into the mailbox of his Learning Home.

Clicking - On the 24th of November, Dexter started clicking his tongue and loves it when you return the sound for him. You hear 'click click click' down the hall. It's cute.

Talking More - On the 25th of November, AJ said, "He said 'aj'! He said 'aj'!" I didn't know if it was true or not, but I've heard him say "Aaajjj" the sound a lot in what seems to be an effort to say A.J. So, I think it's true.

Peanuts - On that same day, Dexter found a peanut on the floor, unbeknownst to me and started sucking on it. I'm hoping this means that he's not allergic to peanuts.

Attempts at Communication - On the 28th of November, Dexter did two very interesting things that could be coincidence or could be showing his cleverness.
1. He was drinking from his Baby Einstein straw cup and pointed at the Octopus and then pointed at the tv as if to say, "Hey, that's the same character in my Baby Einstein movie." or "Hey mommy, can you put on this movie?"
2. I was dressing AJ in the living room and Dexter came to me and tugged at his own shirt as if to say, "Can take me out of my pj's too?"
He is growing up WAY too fast. Did I mention that he's almost 1???
Weight - Although I weighed him one day at 25 lbs, he seems to still be 23 or 23.5. It must be all the exercise he gets now. This was like a week or two ago, so who knows what he weighs now.


Drawing - AJ is really getting quite good at drawing. Sure, sometimes he draws it first and then decides what it looks like, but yesterday (Dec. 11th) when we were drawing together, he drew a boot "Like your rubber boots, Mommy" and coloured it fully and in the lines, I might add. He also drew himself, but then turned it into himself as a blue robot "Like in the movie Robots, Mommy". He drew a pig and a turtle. This time he even had a small story to go with it.

Conversation - Jack is back from Disneyland! AJ's been very excited. We finally got to see Auntie Erica, Jack, and Baby Rya today at the McDonald's playplace, and again that afternoon when Auntie Erica was able to pop by for a visit!!! It's been really cute to listen to Jack and AJ's discussions...
AJ - Jack! Did you go to Disneyland?
Jack - What did you say to me?
AJ - I said Did you go to Disneyland?
Jack - Yes I did go to Disneyland.
AJ - I would like to go to Disneyland with you Jack.
(AJ probably also added in his favourite line "maybe last time ago like Sunday or Monday) I love this.
Later they were riding the ride on vehicles and pretending to be stuck in the mud (which is just like a book AJ has called My Truck is Stuck). Jack claimed that he was stuck in a traffic jam. AJ must not know what a traffic jam is because he said, "I'll help you out of the traffic jam, Jack!"

Pronunciation - This is really improving. He is more and more clear every day.

Spelling - Okay, well this is just funny. Last Thursday (Dec 4th), at McDonalds, when a little girl asked him his name, instead of saying "A.J.", or "Alton James Clark", he said, "Up down across, down scoop". (He told her how to write it.) That was toooooo cute for words.

Speaking of Spelling and Letters - He's still doing his 'J' backwards. I try not to push it, but man, it's bugging me. AJ knows all of letter sounds consistently for a,b,c,d,e,f,h,i,j,k,l,m,n,o,p,q,r,s,t,u,v,w,x,y,z. The only one that he doesn't always get right is 'g'. He says the soft 'g' sound, which, granted, isn't technically incorrect. When it comes to writing letters, this is getting amazing. I'm sure I mentioned in the last blog or two that he loves tracing letters now. Well, a while ago, he said to me, "I'm going to write an 's'." And he proceeded to accurately write the letter 's', top to bottom, and the right direction! And, it wasn't a 'one time' thing. He can do this anytime and it's a hard letter for little kids to write! His 'm' on the other hand is still usually up down up down up down up down. I don't try to fix that yet though. I'm more concerned with that darned 'j'.

Getting Clever at Playtime - I've meanly started to be honest with him about how I don't really want to play cars and trains sometimes. However, he has learned that there are certain activities that I will never say 'No' to: Puzzles, books, and 'learning how to read'. A few days ago, he came to me and said, "Will you play cars with me?" I said, "I really don't want to play cars right now, and I'm unloading the dishwasher right now too." Then he said, "Will you do 'reading time' with me?" And of course, I said, "Yes, of course." lol. Smart alec!!!

Pop the Maggot Dragon - What's that? You've never heard of him? Of course you have! This is AJ's favourite book and CD right now. Picture him singing in his sweet soft high voice, "Pop the Maggot Dragon.... Lived by the sea. And frolicked in the autumn mist, in a land called Honnalee."

Letter Facination - AJ is now into pointing to all things that resemble letters and then telling me about it. The power lines look like 'Xs' and 'Hs'. The big poles at the ferry terminal look like an 'A' with no across thing. He criss crossed his arms and said, "Look! This is like Tic Tac Toe!"

Preschool - AJ can put on his own backpack now. This is cute to watch. I should video tape it, actually. I'll be starting back to work soon, so AJ will be starting at a new preschool.

You're So Fart - For the 'sm' sound, AJ uses a 'f' sound when he talks. Like he calls, 'smarties' 'farties'. We were doing a puzzle last week. It was his big 48 piece Diego puzzle, and he was doing great, really finding and placing most of the pieces himself, and I would often congratulate him saying, "Awesome buddy! You're so smart!" Well, I found and placed one of the pieces he was looking for and he leaped over the puzzle to hug and me and say, "You're so fart! Way to go!"

Sid the Science Kid - AJ's really taken a liking to this show as of late. When I was saying that I think we should do a 'dinosaur' birthday for Dexter's birthday party, he said, "Just like Sid the Science Kid" who had just had a birthday a few episodes ago.

I Love You - AJ's started spontaneously saying, "I love you" as opposed to, "I love you too, Mommy". This has been very sweet and makes me feel bad for anytime I've been angry during the day.

I Like to Move It Move It - He's been really into singing and dancing more than ever. Loves this song from Madagascar, the movie, and even shakes his butt while he's dancing to it.

Gymnastics - I think I'm going to enroll AJ in gymnastics in the spring. He's just loving sommersaults and flipping over and climbing and head stands. I'm so excited. I think he'll really like it! Permission to be crazy!

Bad Dreams Continued -
Wahhhhh, There's a shark in my room!
Wahhhh, Somebody's coming!
Wahhhhh, There's a bumble bee in my room!
Today, I realized that when he wakes in the night, as of late, I think it's because he needs to go pee.
I'll update this situation soon.
He had a shark dream a few nights ago and was telling me all about it and how he poked the shark in the nose! I wonder how he knew to do that?

Something Funny
Normally, I shower at night. However, we had come back late the other night and I just didn't feel like jumping in the shower. This meant that I had to shower in the morning while I had the boys alone with me. No problem. I plunked Dexter in his crib to play safely and told AJ to play in his room or watch a movie while I took a 5 minute shower. I told him that he wasn't allowed to climb in Dexy's crib while I was in the shower. He understood and agreed to play in his room. But, he wanted to lock his gate that blocks his room (to keep Dexter out). I explained that he can't lock it while I'm in the shower because he won't be able to get out. "Who will come to get you if need to get out?" Back and forth we went about this topic, and I finally just headed off to the shower and heard AJ lock the gate behind me. ARG!
Well, not 30 seconds into washing my hair I hear "Mommy! Open my gate!" I reiterated that I couldn't come to him because I was in the shower and he'd just have to wait. He, of course yells, "But I need to pee!" (little bugger). I said, "Too bad, so sad! Guess you'll have to pee in your pull-ups! I told you not to lock the gate!" (he was still wearing his pull ups from night time). He said, "No, I don't pee in my pull-ups!" Next, while conditioning, I hear, "Mommy! Come wipe my willy!" Thinking he had figured out the gate and gone pee in our ensuite, I yell, "You don't need me to wipe it! Just shake it off!"
Finally, I get out of the shower. I walk to his room where the gate is still in fact locked, and see AJ standing with his pants and pull ups around his ankles. Behind him is a 'make shift' toilet consisting of an upside down lid from his memory game. It has definitely been peed in. And, he was definitely standing to pee because there was some significant 'splash-age'.
I asked him why he didn't just pee in his pull-ups. He said, "Because I had a dry night!"
I was so dissolutioned at this point. I couldn't really reprimand him in any way and was impressed with his toilet idea. I just gave him 'the look' instead and said, "Next time, are you going to lock the gate?" He said, "No, I won't."

Bedtime in the Loft Bed
AJ normally just takes naps in the loft bed, if he does sleep in there. A few nights ago I let him spend the night up there. It was the first night in a while that he didn't wake in the night crying from some sort of nightmare or what have you (which by the way is getting really annoying). Anyhow, the point is, he didn't fall out in a tired stupor in the middle of the night. That was good. Since writing this, he had 4 more nights like this without waking up and calling for us. But, the last two nights, he called for us. Bummer. However, AJ's sleeping in his loft bed for bedtime now. His toddler bed is gone and taken apart. His toddler/crib mattress though is now at the end of his loft bed as a little reading area. The cushion puts Daddy's mind at ease.

Dexter's Sleep
Dexter's been sleeping better than ever. He's usually in bed between 6:30pm and 7:00pm. Sometimes he wakes at 5am or so and puts himself back to sleep (thank you to Nancy and Ryan for giving me the idea to attach his soother to his sleepsack with the soother clip-best idea ever!). On the weekends, we've gotten kind of lazy and let him sleep until 8:00am! It sures messes up his routine for the day, but man is it nice!! Well, since I wrote this, I must've jinxed the situation. He's had two nights or three nights now, where he's woken and needed me to intervene. Perhaps because I was pushing his bedtime later than usual, like 7/7:30pm instead of his usual 6:30pm.

We are embarked on an adventurous weekend last weekend (the 5th, 6th, 7th).
Friday night - We went to the candlelight parade in Mission. Richard convinced me to let Dexy come too, so our little family sat at the side of the road from 7-9:30pm watching the parade! The boys thought it was great. They especially loved the sirens and lights!

Saturday Morning - I went to a craft fair and then we all headed to my mom's to decorate their tree and listen to Christmas music. There must've been 12 or more boxes of decorations to bring up from downstairs. YIKES! She'll be decorating for days!!
Dexter's eating some Christmas treats!!!

Sunday Morning - We headed down the road (after picking up an Americano from Starbucks, of course) to chop down our Christmas tree. It was super! We met up with Auntie Jen's family and it was just really nice and very special.

Sunday Night
- Mom and Ken (Gram and Papa) came to watch the boys while Richard and I went to the Northview Christmas Production. It's a great show every year. If you've never been, I encourage you to go.
Monday Night - We decorated our tree!

Foot Passenger Day
I had a crazy idea last week. I thought it would be a good idea to pack up the boys and head to the ferries, load up the stroller, and head over to the Island as foot passengers to visit my cousin, Shauna, who just had a baby on Nov. 28th, and Richard's mom who had just arrived back into town on the 2nd of Dec. We wouldn't have carseats with us, of course, because we would be foot passengers, so I asked Shauna, Auntie Brenda, Baby Ethan, and Richard's mom, Norma to meet us at the ferry terminal which is pretty close for all of them. That way we could visit and have coffee.
It was so great.
My sister ended up coming with us and was, of course, as usual a BIG help!!!
8:00ish - we left the house to head to the terminal, packed with kids, mittens, toques, and food and drinks for the whole day.

Stocked up!!

10:15 - the ferry headed to Duke Point. It wasn't one of the awesome ferries like the ones that go to Victoria with huge kids' play area, but it did have a small play area, and the ferry wasn't very busy, so it worked out really well. I think Dexter took a nap on the way to the terminal, if I remember correctly. We had lunch on the ferry.

12:15 - we got off the ferry, got Dexter to sleep for a not-so-long afternoon nap, and soon met with everyone. Norma (Granny) hadn't seen the boys since April!!! Poor Granny! She came bearing gifts just a like a Granny! She had some cool Thomas trains for AJ and a cute little car with animals that stack on top for Dexter. Both boys loved their toys and were very happy to see Granny. Shauna and Auntie Brenda came bearing Starbucks coffees and the new baby-Ethan! YAY! He was so sweet. It's a pretty boring terminal in the arrivals area as the shops and playground are of course in the departures area and you need a ticket to get in there. It all worked out. The boys had their new toys and Granny and everyone to talk to. And we all chit chatted about the new baby and baby-stuff in general. It was so great to see everyone.

3:15 - the ferry headed back for home. This one had an exceptional play area and great little friend named "Kenny" for the boys to play with. We fed Dexter his dinner on the ferry and AJ coloured, played, and the boys watched a DVD too because I had the car DVD player with us.

5:15 - We arrived back in Tswassen, and headed to the McDonalds to meet Grand-Dan for dinner. AJ got to see Grand-Dan and play at the playplace and have a not very healthy dinner. But it was a nice treat!
6:00ish - We gave Dexy his bedtime baba at McD's and changed him into his sleeper.
7:00pm or later!!! - We headed home. Dexter and AJ slept the whole way.
The day couldn't have gone any more smoothly.

Jack's Birthday Party
Before heading to Disneyland, Jack turned 3 years old. He had a really fun birthday party at the park. The kids had lots of fun. Here's some pics courtesy of Auntie Erica.
Feeding the ducks. Which we're not really supposed to do.

The babies. Clockwise from the left: Emerson, Jaxon, Rya, Dexter.

Tomorrow we'll be watching Auntie Kim get her black belt in Karate. I'm a little afraid to see what happens to AJ after watching this, as this is what he does after watching Kung Fu Panda...


Monday, November 17, 2008

Birthday, Santa, Boobies, and Letters

Dexter's laughing his head off because AJ's moving ahead and it's moving him ahead too.

It's November 17th. I'm starting to write this, but I don't think I'll finish because I'm waiting for the pictures that go with this post.

First off, since hardly any of this post, if any at all, is about Dexter, I'd better say something about Dexy now.
Still lots of smiles. Finally starting to have longer awake times between naps. His cruising is involving more and more one handedness lately. He likes to push things down the hall and walk behind them. The steps are long and draggy sometimes, but he's getting the hang of it. He just loves wrestling with AJ. I have a hard time letting them do this without 'going all mom' on them, but I try to let them have fun. They have the most fun in the tunnel down in the playroom chasing and pushing and tumbling inside and out. He's got 5 teeth, and the 6th is still trying to bust through. Luckily it's not bugging his sleep the last two nights.

Another Couple Cute AJ Sayings
While walking past the lingerie section at American Eagle...
"Hey, look Mommy, they have boobie stuff here!"
On the way to my friend Nancy's house down the street...
"Does Nancy live in Mission?"
"No, preschool is in Mission. Nancy lives in Abbotsford, just down the street."
"Oh, Abbotsford! That's where we live. We live in Abbotsford. Our house lives in Abbotsford, right mommy?"
"Yes. We live in Abbotsford, in our house."
For everything...
"Look at me Mommy! Watch this Mommy!" (yes, we've entered this phase)

AJ Went to a Birthday Party
A boy in AJ's class was turning 4, and AJ was invited to his party at the rec centre. It said it was a 'gym party'. I thought that meant that it was like open playgroup. Oops. Nope.
As I was dressing AJ for the party, I was trying to think of what I should put on AJ: Party wear, or casual wear? This was quite a dilemma, if you know me at all. What would be worse, being under-dressed or over-dressed. I figured, over-dressed is the better choice. (I could hear Auntie Erica whispering in my ear "AJ's always over-dressed."
Well, sure enough, the party is in the actual gym. It's not open play. The girl running it is running games of British Bulldog, tag, soccer drills, and such. AJ clammed right up, as it was a 'new' activity with 'new' kids. He ran a bit and rolled on some mats, and otherwise just watched.

Was he over-dressed?
Oh yeah, was he ever!!!
All the kids were wearing sneakers and sweats!!!
I don't even let AJ out of the house in sweats unless it's some sort of special 'outfit' that's like a whole matching pants and hoodie deal, but it's rare. REALLY rare. I was shocked beyond belief.
You're thinking to yourself, "Get over it Sonja. They were going to be in a gym."
But all I could think was, "This is a party!! Where's the party clothing?"
Nonetheless, great kids, great parents, great cake, great snacks for the kids and parents, and lots of fun.
My favourite part of the party?
When the parents were trying to get the gift opening part all set up and all the kids who brought gifts started opening them themselves to show Alexander what they got for him. Not just pulling stuff out of gift bags either. I'm telling you, they were ripping the wrapping paper. It was like a look into the future.
Loved every minute of it.
All in all. It was really nice to be out alone with AJ while Daddy watched Dexter.

This was an interesting part of the party. The leader was asking everyone his/her name and their favourite game. She didn't see AJ hiding there and as we were heading to the gym, AJ yelled, "Oh no! I didn't get to it! I didn't get a turn!" At first, I didn't realize what he meant, and then I clued in, and she did too. She asked him his name and his favourite game. Well, he's so shy. There was a bit of silence. A few repeated words, like 'my my my my name my my my', but patience is a virtue and AJ finally spit out, "I'm AJ. My favourite game is DON'T BREAK THE ICE". Yes, he yelled that part.

Christmas Photos
So, Richard and I (mostly me) still wanted to do another Christmas Family Picture for the Christmas cards. Richard had this 'cool' idea to put the camera on the tripod on the coffee table and we'd all lay in a + with our heads together for a picture. It was horrible.

I stopped the chaos. "STOP. This is ridiculous!!! Go put some jeans on, and let's do this sitting on the fireplace like I wanted in the first place! And... I want their shoes in the picture."

No shoes in the picture. The best one, Richard's head's cut off, and the next one is blurry because I was bouncing Dexter while the camera was trying to focus.

Here's the chaos...


Naughty Mommy Moment?
I don't know if this is naughty or not.
After finding out that TWO of my friends put there babes to bed with their soothers on one of the soother ribbon clippy thingies, I thought I'd give this a try too.
Well, aside from saying 'yes' to marrying Richard and deciding to have children.

Proud Mommy Moment
As you all know, AJ's pretty good with his letters, letter sounds, drawing, and that sort of thing. He's not Einstein by any means, but he's a with it guy in this department.
It's been really neat to watch these skills develop over the last 6 or so months. Back in the summer, maybe July/August, when AJ was watching Super Why on tv, he started yelling the letters he saw as they found the 'super letters'. This lead to him 'reading out' letters in words when we'd be out places. You know, like, Home Depot this summer. We'd be walking in and he'd see the sign as we were pulling up and say, "Look, 'H', 'O', 'M', 'E'", etc.
Then, as I just wrote about a couple entries back, it was this same spelling but with him saying the beginning letter sound, like the 'k' in the word, 'kids'.
Anyhow, my point is...
It's neat to watch the steps progress.
Tonight, when showing Daddy how we organized his colouring books and stuff into magazine boxes, AJ noticed that there were some printing books. They weren't new, but I guess he hadn't seen them in a while. He asked what they were. I said that they were for writing letters. He asked if he could do some letters (please note it was about 8:30pm, already late for bedtime), and I wasn't going to say no to learning, so I let him sit at his table and gosh by golly if that kids didn't start tracing letters. I'll give him a break on the 's' and the 'e', but man oh man, upper case and lower case, even a 'q' and a 'b' and a 'k'. He could trace letters.
What's next!!!???? The pics from this aren't on the site yet.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

More AJ Quips and Quotables and Santa Pics

While wiping the crumbs off of AJ's pants after dinner...

"I'm a crummy guy!"

At White Spot when Grand-Dan snuck up behind AJ and tickled him...

"Has to be Grand-Dan!"

We had our Santa Pics today!!! Too cute!!!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Mini Baby Book Entry

As Auntie Erica excitedly noticed Dexter's pointing, it occurred to me that it's possible I didn't write about Dexter pointing at things and at pictures in books for the last month or more. It's pretty darned cute. It's like he's asking me a question each time. When we read "Goodnight Moon", he points to the same things on the cover each time: the bunny and the fireplace. Back and forth he points to them to hear me say what they are.

But does he clap?
But, according to Richard, yes!
A couple months ago, Richard claims, I was trying to show him how Dexter had clapped that day, and he wouldn't show Daddy.
Regardless, whether he clapped or not, isn't 'clapping'.

I'm having a really hard time staying consistent this time. He'll definitely copy me, like, he'll copy 'change', 'more',and 'finished', but he doesn't use them if you get the distinction there.
I think once he claps, it'll follow soon after. We'll see.

Sometimes, I walk in the living room and there's Dexy, having hauled out the book basket, grabbed a favourite book or two, and he's sitting there enjoying it and turning the pages as if to say, "Look Mum, if you're not going to read to me, I'm just going to do it myself, okay?"
What a sweet sweet thing.
Duly noted, Dexter is a book destroyer. Anything with paper pages is far away from him now. Board books, he can have, but he doesn't just gnaw on them, he tries to consume them.
His most blasphemous book destruction to date? The Very Hungry Caterpillar. Tsk Tsk.

Shape Sorting
Dexter's really getting into this whole idea of trying to fit blocks into holes or shapes into their spots or fridge farm animals into the magnetic fridge farm. I love it. He's really turning into a person.

He got to play at Jack's yesterday for a little while in the backyard while I took Dexter to pick something up in Aldergrove.
Today, I needed to get some house cleaning done, so I asked Erica to drop off Jack to keep AJ company while Dexter napped and I cleaned.
It was so nice. The boys played down in the playroom so well together while I was upstairs cleaning and checking on them sporadically. It was sooooo peaceful upstairs. Ahhhhh.

Dexter's Cruising
He's starting to indicate that he'd like to let go and walk away. He has let go for brief periods to then squat down. He's started to take up walking on his hands and feet occasionally. That's weird looking. In the middle of the room, he'll just start pushing up onto his feet as though he's going to stand. Sometimes, he even picks his hands up off the floor and stays there balanced and squatting. His first birthday is going to be soooo fun if he's walking by then.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Getting Too Smart For His Own Good

Cheeky Monkey

So, this morning after I put Dexter down for his morning nap, AJ asked me to play cars (from his loft bed that he's not suppposed to be on unless it's sleeping time). I agreed and started to set up his ramp. That little smart-alec, then proceeds to say, in my mommy/teacher tone of voice,

"Good job, Mommy. That's good ramp building. Just like I asked you. Good listening. Yes. Good ramp building."

What a little &%$#%#^%.

That's exactly what I say when I'm trying to give him some praise for actually doing what I've asked WHEN I've asked it (which is very rare as of late).

Some Early Reading
When we arrived at Old Navy yesterday, after a fun time at Captain Kids with Auntie Erica, Auntie Jen, Uncle Dave, and all the kids, AJ saw the big sign in the kids' department that says "KIDS".
He pointed up and said, "K, I, D, S. Look mommy. 'k' " ('k' being the sound, not the letter).

PJ Day Again
It's Tuesday. It's Rememberance Day. We're sitting at home having a PJ day. Yawn. We had a pretty bad night with Dexter. Interestingly enough, it followed a night where I let him have some of our cheesy cauliflower. Last time I let him have some cheese, he had a horrible night. I bit off most of the cheese last night, but he still had a bad night. He's allergic to milk, so it could be that it bugged his tummy all night. Or, it's just a coincidence, and his teething (he's getting tooth 5 and 6 right now) was just getting the better of him.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Just a Bit More

I forgot that I had written a few extra tidbits on the corner of the calendar, so here's those items too...

Dexter Doodle Doo
-Dexter loves the Magna Doodle. Normally, he loves to eat the pen and the string, but the other day, I turned the pen around for him so he would make mrks on the screen when he hit it with the pen. He quite liked that.
-A day or two ago, when I walked into the living room, he had gotten a hold of the magna doodle and this is what he produced!! I'm pretty darned impressed!

This or That
-AJ decided that I needed to be 'given a choice' on Friday. We were headed to play at Captain Kids, and before heading out the door, he said that he wanted to bring his camera (one of my old cameras). I said 'no' and spouted off our usual reasons for not bringing toys to play places. He said then, that he wanted to bring his camera case, instead. I said 'no' to that as well for the same reason. He then laid the two items on the table and tapped one at a time and said to me, "This or this? This.......... or this?" Just the way that I would be giving him a choice. It was cute. I said, "Neither." I hope he doesn't pick up on that too.

Wearing Uncle Paul's Shoes
-I've said to AJ things like "When you're a big boy like Uncle Paul." or "When you're a big boy like Adam and Matt."
-Well the whole growing thing really has him thinking and I have to be careful how I say things. He's suddenly sprouted and grown out of about 4 pairs of jeans in the matter of 3 weeks. I was pretending to be mad and said, "You're getting too big! You'd better stop growing up!" He looked very concerned. I assured him I was just kidding and that everybody grows up and grows out of their clothes, even Adam, and Matt, and Uncle Paul. He said, "I'm going to grow big like Uncle Paul and I will wear his shoes."

Don't Sit on the Bear Potty!!
-So, AJ has taken up this new habit of standing to pee, realizing he needs to poop too, and rather than putting the seat down, just sitting on the 'bare potty'. I keep saying, "What's the rule? Are you allowed to sit on the bare potty?" And he says, "No. I sit on the seat to poop."
-Well, the other day, the seat was left up from the last time he peed, I guess, and Dexter was heading over to the potty and AJ says.....

wait for it.....

this is funny....

"No Dexy, that potty is only for bears! Don't go on the bear potty!"

Driving Dexter
-Dexter is in love with all ride on items at our house. Whether it's the zebra downstairs that bounces and spins or the 3 ride on vehicles upstairs. He loves to ride them and be pushed around. He is trying desperately to figure out how to mount them himself. Once on though, he is movin'. He's learned how to push along with his feet. Just a bit, but nonetheless. He really feels like a 'big boy'.

Hampering My Son's Artistic Development
-AJ has a paint easel now. He really enjoys it. There are four colour coded paint brushes with matching paint cups: red, blue, green, and yellow. He defintely knows which brush goes where, so the paints don't get messy.
-I come over to the easel and he's mixed up all the paint brushes, and I start to get on his case and clean off the brushes to put them back in the right containers when AJ says while painting on the paper, "Look mommy, blue and yellow paint. It's green now."
-Obviously, I have to let him mix paints now. Did Picasso's mom have colour coded brushes and cups, probably not.

Flying Dragon
-I forgot to mention that AJ, while trick or treating could feel the wings of his dragon costume flapping on his back while he was walking and running. He would say, "Look, Mommy, I'm flying. I'm flying!" Throughout the night, when he wasn't holding his treat bag, you could see him holding his wings and flapping them. It was cute.

The Dangers of Grocery Shopping
"I want to help push the cart. I want to help push the cart!!"
right on the bottom grating thingy

Thursday, November 06, 2008

All of October

AJ at the pumpkin patch in 2007, 1.5 years old.

AJ and Dexter at the pumpkin patch in 2008, 2.5 years old, and 9 months old.

The Pumpkin Patch
The first thing I wanted to talk about was our day at the pumpkin patch. Well, actually, our first day at the pumpkin patch. On Tuesday, October 22rd, I took AJ and Dexter to the pumpkin patch with the goal of taking some pumpkin patchy pics and getting two pumpkins. We went to The Apple Barn. I just love it there. Pumpkin patch, hay ride, playground, jumping pillow, three crazy slides, a petting zoo, horse swings, and one more slide. Here's some of the many pics from that day.

AJ is in the middle of the pumpkin patch here.

AJ having his pumpkin weighed to find out the price.

AJ on the jumping pillow.

AJ and Dexter in the pumpkin patch.

AJ jumping off the bottom of the 'slow slide'.

This is AJ feeding the goats on a second trip to the pumpkin patch that weekend with Daddy, The Hodson-Maloneys, and The Tjarts.

This is the first set of pics I took of the boys on a wagon when I got there. Yes, you're right, hand over the 'worst mom of the year award', that's Dexter falling off the wagon. I stopped his fall.

Dexter deciding which piece of dirt to eat.

Dexter showing off his climbing and standing skills.

This is the big crazy fast slide. AJ sounds like he is literally tumbling down it. Nonetheless, he thought it was fun and wanted to go again and again and again.

The horse swing!

AJ running away because the Mommy-goat was going to 'get him'.

Two boys in baby swings.

Happy Dexy in the pumpkins!

The very long and very slooooowwww slide. That's AJ way at the top!

I told AJ he could only pick a pumpkin that he could carry to the stroller. He chose this one and is proving his abilities.

At the end of the pumpkin patch day, we were wiped. AJ had cereal for dinner and some raw veggies and fruit. We kept it simple.

Mill Lake Park
We had a day in the last couple weeks where we went to Mill Lake park and spent something like 3 hours there!!
Here's AJ and Dexter in the swings there.

My Day With Two Toddlers,Two Babies, and Four Car Seats in One Car
I am so behind that I'm going to be forgetting half the things I wanted to write and some things will be way out of date.

The bonus for 'my readers'? You don't get as much detail.

For example.
On the 24th of October, I watched Jack and Rya along with AJ and Dexter for the day. Had I written this that day, you'd now be reading a 1000 word diatribe on all the cute things they did, and how suprisingly enjoyable it was to be with the 4 kids all day. But now, you get a few things that stand out in my mind from that day.
*Jack arrived at my house with a sesame snap glued to his leg of his corduroys, also known at my house as 'lint-and-cat-hair-picker-uppers'.That was funny. I was picturing him at home eating the sesame snap, resting it down while playing, and kneeling on it forgetting it was there. It was just cute.
*Rya did some impressive waving and was her usual cute, sweet self.
*I put 4 car seats, yes, 4 car seats into my car. Dexter, Rya, and Jack in the back, and AJ in the front middle beside me. We headed to Auntie Jen's house to go for a walk to the the local creek and park with her, Makenna, Emerson, Jaxon, and her neighbor, Candace, with her son, Josiah, and her daughter, Madison. Rya and Dexter alternated sleeping in the stroller. AJ walked. All the kids were great. I started feeding lunch at the playground and finished up at home.
*Rya, as suspected, was a little weirded out by the idea of napping at my house (having never done that before), so I eventually just put her in my sling and she slept on me for an hour and 20 minutes! It was sweet.
*All the kids were great all day.

This is AJ and Jack having lunch watching a movie, and Rya having her lunch and looking so cute. Dexter was in the exersaucer, having finished his lunch already.

Family Picture at the Pumpkin Patch on Sunday, October 26th
Here's our 'family picture' from the boys' second trip to the pumpkin patch with Daddy and some of our friends.

Some Funny AJ Sayings and Such
Before the kiss goodnight...
AJ - "I want to get a tricycle with no wheels."
Me - "You mean a bike?"
AJ - "Yah, a bike."

Before receiving his chocolate milk...
AJ - "...and put some chocolate in it!"
Me - "Uh... manners?"
AJ - "Please."
Me - "Please what?"
AJ - "Please put some chocolate in it this time."
(We had gone to Starbucks earlier where he got a half sweet chocolate milk, and when we're at home, I either don't put any chocolate in his chocolate milk, or I only put in two drops. I guess he's onto me after tasting 'the good stuff'.)

In the car while listening to his CD from music class...
AJ - "Can you turn this off and turn on Mommy dancing music?"
Me - "The radio."
AJ - "Yah."
Me - "This?" (I turn on 94.5, and it's talk instead of music at this time)
AJ - "Where's the music?"
Me - "Sometimes there's commercials. I have a better idea." (I proceed to put in my Paul McCartney CD.
AJ - "Yah, this is music from when Daddy was in the car with us. Last time ago."
Me - "Oh yeah, yes it is. When Daddy was in the car with us last weekend, we listened to this CD."

When playing with his little Tonka vehicles and Disney Cars and is looking puzzled at one of them...
AJ - "This one has no mouth!?"

I've been working on the playroom downstairs. AJ is quite stoked. He knows that Dexter is not allowed in his section, and each day I'm adding something new to do in his section. I picked up an easel last week, and AJ's super excited about the painting. Today we broke out the stamps and ink pads and he was ecstatic. He has a reading tent and couch up high, his kichen, his tools, felts, playdough, painting, stamps, and soon, Lego!!

AJ has finally passed 24.5lbs. When I weighed him the other day, he was 26lbs. YAY!

Dexter's been crawling for a month now and he's all over the place. It's exciting and annoying too. I find myself saying, "Where did Dexter go?" much more often than I'd like. We're in need of more baby gates. I need swinging ones, I think for the bedrooms. AJ's room and our room. And one for Dexter's room too, so I can pen him in there for safety while I run some laundry downstairs.
It's so neat that sometimes the boys are each playing in their own rooms. I'll be folding some laundry in my room and Dexter's in his room and AJ's in his room. It's just a sign of changing times in our family.
He's trying to climb up on things too, like the couch, and AJ's bed. I think he'd be going up stairs too if we had that kind of house.
When I've missed his 'sleep window' on occasion and he doesn't want to go to sleep, he'll throw his dinosaur and paci out of the crib. He knows I need to come in to give those back.
Have I mentioned that he's cruising everywhere? He loves coasters, specifically glass ones. He let's go to grab something else. He can push his walking toy and walk behind it. He can wave good-bye, but not too often.
He's saying 'mama' to me now, and he says 'dada' sometimes too. Richard thinks that Dexter looked right at him the other day and said, "Hi Dada". Maybe!?

Dexter is just slightly shy of 23lbs.

I need to update more, but I can't remember what else I wanted to say.

Dexter's 9 Month Portrait
I also decided to take Dexter's 9 month pictures myself instead of going to a potrait studio. Here's some faves.

Feel free to tell me your fave.

In these ones, he's super happy because he's enjoying his squeaky shoes!