Monday, October 29, 2012

A Week in the Life (v.3.5)

Sitting outside in the 80 degree weather at the beginning of the week

Playing with the autumn leaves.  Yes, they look brown & dead -- we only have oaks and no, we don't have pretty maples in our yard with their pretty color leaves.

Who needs expensive toys when you can play with a paper towel roll?

Speaking of paper towels, is it wrong that we stick a wet paper towel to her head and laugh?

Practicing her super-human strength by trying to rip up the paper towel

Sitting at breakfast on Saturday morning, heading over to get her passport

Yummy breakfast!

One of my favorite photos of all time!

Lucy napping with Finn and while this was happening...

This was happening.  I usually turn on the oven to warm it up if I need to let bread dough rise.  Unfortunately, this time, I forgot to turn off the oven.  Oven 1, Plastic bowl 0.

I didn't let a melted plastic bowl in the oven stop me, though.  I tried again and my pumpkin pull-apart bread was a success!  (I've made this recipe at least 5 times in the last month -- who's a sucker for cinnamon sugar & pumpkin?  This girl!)

Despite not having a lot of hair -- the girl still gets bedhead.

Just in case, you couldn't see the magnitude of her wild hair, a video captures it perfectly.

Playing with block in the kitchen while Mommy cooks chili

Totally teasing Mommy & Daddy all weekend by looking like I'm going to crawl to them and then not.

Up on all fours, just waiting to make my move...

I pretend like I'm going to crawl to them and then collapse on the floor in a pile of exhaustion, just to make Mommy feel sorry for me...

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Happy 36 weeks to my spooky lady!

  • So unscientifically, Finn weighs in at 21.4 pounds and is 29.5 inches tall.
  • We are currently in size 3 diapers.  They seem to be fitting well.  Once we moved to the size 3s, we lost the blue line that tells you when the diaper is wet or not.  Eain asked why they would stop making them.  I had said to him that it may be that the diaper companies think that by size 3, you should be able to tell by feel (on the outside) when the diaper is wet on the inside.
  • The wild woman fits into size 6-9 right now, with a lot of her stuff now with just a single number on it.  Brought to you by the number "9".  Eain thinks that we are going to need to swap out sizes really soon, heading up to 12 months already.  It would be the first time that we actually moved up sizes before she had actually reached the size that was listed on the clothing.  So this past weekend, it was really cold out, so I put her in one of her two winter jackets (one is size 12 months and the other is size 18 months).  I put on the size "12" jacket and I had to roll the sleeves up on the coat.  Her poor arms were definitely not long enough for that size.  I think that there are some clothes that we may need to swap out, but I think that we don't need to move all of them.  I'm trying to get as much use out of each size as possible.  I do think that we will be moving into size "12" way before she is 12 months old -- for sure!  Just not right now.
  • We are still breastfeeding, but the weaning is slowly beginning.  She is still eating the same amount; I am starting to cut down to pumping to twice a day at work (instead of three).  It makes me really sad that in less than four months it will be over.  :(  
  • The girl is a champ at eating!  I will list all the of the lumpy purees that I have given her: bananas, apples, pears, peaches, mangoes, plums, avocado, pumpkin, sweet potato, acorn squash, carrots, green beans, peas, & parsnips.  She definitely has her favorites.  But some of her other favorites are eggs, chicken, venison, kidney beans, cheese & rice pudding.  I almost always give her some baby portions of my food.  She is really starting to prefer my food over her purees.  So we may be transitioning her slowly into eating big-people foods all the time.
  • Which brings me to her teeth.  The girl STILL doesn't have any.  There are no little white buds on her gums.  Her gums feel lumpy, but have felt that way for the past weeks.  I'm not concerned as I know that she is going to get them eventually.  But I have to watch what I give her to eat -- and make sure that it can be gummed, instead of chewed.
  • We also aren't crawling yet.  Quite a few people have been surprised when they ask her age and then ask if she is crawling.  She definitely isn't going to be crawling from her stomach first.  She will crawl from a sitting position.  She will sit, lean to the side with both of her hands down on the ground and rock back and forth -- almost like trying to get her momentum.  Most of the time, it's her leg that is in the way of her getting onto all fours.  As of yesterday, she is able to now swing that front leg under her, but right now, she will just lunge for whatever it is that she is going after, landing on her stomach.  She isn't staying on all fours long enough to figure out her hand and leg movements.  It's the same story as her teeth.  I know that she is going to crawl at some point.  And I also know that when she doesn't start crawling, I am going to wish for my stationary baby so I can turn my back for a second to finish something on the counter.  She'll do it whenever she is ready.
  • She is starting to make the motions of pulling herself up as well.  She will put her hands up on the coffee table or on the top of her toy, but she doesn't have enough strength to pull her chubby little body into a standing position.  When we stand her next to her toy, she will stand by herself for a couple of seconds before faltering.  She also sticks her booty WAY out, trying to figure out how to balance her body weight.  It's so adorable...
  • The girl is a chatterbox, a serious chatterbox.  She starts talking from the minute that she wakes up.  Of course, we have our silent moments -- but she isn't afraid to use her voice.  Lots of baba's and dada's -- mama has fallen to the wayside.  She also now will yell sometimes when she really gets worked up about something.  She is also starting to play with her hands and her voice.  She occasionally will go "wa-wa-wa" hitting her hand against her mouth.
  • One of her new things is making faces now.  She will scrunch up her nose at something.  Or she will furrow her brows when something frustrates her.  
  • She is also a clapping fool.  She loves to clap and does so when she gets really excited about something (or when mommy claps and dances).  She also LOVES to dance to music and sing.  She is also starting to wave goodbye.  She does this mostly when we are leaving daycare and waves to all the workers as we leave. 
  • We are sort of sleeping through the night.  It isn't uncommon for her to sleep until 4am when she is put in her crib.  And for the most part, when she wakes up, she isn't crying.  She whines in her crib and talks to herself.  Most of the time, I get up and go get her because I can't sleep with her varying between talking and whining.  I know that I'm not going back to sleep, so I might as well hurry the process along.  Within the next couple of weeks, I'm going to begin trying to soothe her in her own room to see how that goes.  I think it will go well, as I said, she isn't upset.  She is just awake and lonely.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Hey-ho! Halloween's here!

It's that time of year -- one of my two favorite holidays (with Christmas being the other) is nearing 'round the corner.  With tricks & treats, witches & pumpkins, falling leaves & cozy-smelling candles, Halloween will be here in a little over a week.  And I can't be more excited for it.  Growing up in the middle of farm country in Iowa, October always meant three things...  National Fire Prevention week, Mom's rolled-out frosted sugar cookies, and Halloween!

Did you know that National Fire Prevention week is in October?  I do!  When I was growing up, National Fire Prevention week was always a big deal.  It meant that our local volunteer firefighters would come in their turnout gear and we all got to ride on the firetrucks around our little town.  Our class also got to draw posters to be entered into a contest.  The posters were posted at the firehouse later in the week, with the winners in each group having blue ribbons on them.  I won one year with my "Don't you carrot all?  Prevent forest fires" (a sad bunny rabbit with a fire going on one side and a happy rabbit with a fire that was put out on the other).  The posters were displayed in our local firehouse for all the locals to see at the Pow-Wow that took place on Friday night.  The Pow-Wow was a HUGE event for me.  Looking back now, it seems kind of lame -- but as a kid, it was magical.  The Pow-Wow was an event hosted by the local firefighters with bingo all night (until 9 or 10) and then a dance after that for the adults (which I never did attend).  Bingo was played by maybe a hundred or so people.  We had the old-time bingo cards that had sunk-in squares for each of the numbers.  You would use dried shucked corn as your number-markers, which most ended up on the floor of the firehouse by the end of the evening.  The local firefighters would be walking around to call out the cards to the lucky ones that yelled out Bingo.  It always ended with a black-out (where you had to fill your entire card) with a prize of $100.  And there was always popcorn.  I don't think that I ever won anything for all the times that I played and all the bingo games they called.  But there was something special about those Pow-Wows...

In my elementary classes, there were three holiday parties: Halloween, Christmas, & Valentine's Day.  I ALWAYS picked Halloween and I ALWAYS said that I would bring frosted sugar cookies.  Looking back, I didn't do anything to make these cookies and my mom deserves all the credit.  She would make the cookies, bake the cookies and ended up frosting most of the cookies when my brother and I had long grew bored and gave up decorating.  But, man did I love those sugar cookies...  She would only make them on three occasions -- Halloween, Christmas & Valentine's Day, so I could have brought them to any of my school holiday parties.  But there was something about Halloween.

On Halloween day or the Friday before the weekend of Halloween, the afternoon was spent at our classes' Halloween party.  Everyone would dress up in their costumes and we would have a Halloween parade up and down Main Street in our town.  My mom would take off early from work to see us in the parade every single time.  And the rest of the afternoon was spent playing in our classrooms while eating cookies and juice.

Each year, my brother and I would dress up in our costumes on Halloween night and our mom would take us around town.  We would drive, park and trick-or-treat in the couple of blocks around the parked car, then pile back into the car and move it and repeat over and over.  When I was young, I can remember that trick-or-treating started at 4:30pm and ended at 9:00pm -- that was 4.5 hours of candy, candy, candy.  And we would be darned if we didn't try to hit every single house in our town with its' outside light on, even in the rain.  Gosh, my mom was such a trooper.

The title of the post was taken from my favorite Halloween song as a little girl...

One little, two little, three little witches
Flew on their broomsticks
Flew over ditches
Slid down the moon &
Tore their britches
Hey-ho Halloween's here!

My other favorite Halloween song...

Five little pumpkins sitting on a gate;
The first one said, "Oh my, it's getting late.
The second one said, "There are witches in the air."
The third one said "But I don't care."
The fourth one said, "I'm ready for some fun!"
The fifth one said, "Let's run and run and run.
"Wooooooooo" went the wind,
And out went the lights.
And the five little pumpkins rolled out of sight.

My mom wasn't afraid to let her holiday-freak flag fly (and I'm not ashamed either).  We started out with the simple cardboard decorations that were hung in every window.  And there was this little 7" ghost holding a pumpkin that lit up that was always placed on top of our television which was under our big picture window in our living room.  Each Halloween, the decorations grew a little more.  Now there are many outside decorations at my parents' house, including a light-up graveyard and a blow-up headless horseman carriage complete with two ghost horses.  My mom has proudly passed the holiday-freak flag down.  I have at least a little bit of Halloween in every room on our main floor & four light-up pumpkins outside (I'm going to try and get photos of our decorations for Finn's first Halloween post.)

Another thing about Halloween that I love is haunted houses.  I love scaring myself.  E and I went to a single haunted house in the 10+ years that we have been together despite my absolute LOVE of them.  I finally drug him to The Bates Motel in Philly.  We did the three hopper pass (hay ride, corn maze, & haunted house).  The hay ride was okay -- fun, but not scary.  But the corn maze seriously did me in.  (A side on the side story -- I've only been to one corn maze before in college, and we ended up running away from the chainsaw guy so fast that we caught up with the group in front of us.  Not a good idea as we no longer got scared.) E realized that if he walked behind me, he could scare the living crap out of me but jumping up from behind me.  After the second time, I wasn't going to fall for him jumping up behind me.  So when he did it, I turned around to tell him that it wasn't funny and I came face-to-face with a scary man with a chainsaw.  I don't think that I screamed louder in my life.  Funny story from the haunted corn maze (and probably the one story that E remembers)?  We got into the middle of the corn maze, which was an open yard of sorts with a horse stable on either side.  I was trying to walk quickly through the middle of the open yard and scary man that worked at the maze came running after me.  I screamed and ran -- he grabbed me and started to drag me into one of the horse stables.  I started screaming at the top of my lungs for E who just stood there laughing his butt off at me.  I saw that my knight in shining armor wasn't going to save me, so I do the only thing that I could remember from self-defense class...  I dropped to the ground, becoming dead weight.  Instantly the scary man became concerned for me and asked if I was okay.  I got up from the ground as quickly as my legs would carry me and I ran into the maze.  Eain was left to tell the scary man that I was okay and that I wasn't hurt.  Some knight in shining armor...

As you can see with all the photos that I'm posting with this post, last weekend, we went to the pumpkin patch with Finn.  My mom came to visit for the weekend, so it was really special for her to be able to spend the weekend with Finn in her Halloween costume and buying her her first pumpkin.  We also went to the Farmpark on Sunday, which is basically a farm that's built like a zoo.  I'll have more on that in another post, as we didn't take any photos and we are most definitely going back.  What can I say -- I took one step in the dairy barn with the cows and was instantly brought back home to Iowa.  I even told my mom as we stepped through the doors "Mmmmm, smells like grandma & grandpa's farm..."  I think that I might invest in a membership there, because I would love to go back over and over again -- whenever I'm feeling homesick.