Saturday, October 3, 2009

Goin' to Grandma's (and Grandad's)

I remember when I was little, I had a suitcase that said Going to Grandma's. I used to love visits to my grandparent's house. After we moved to KC as a kid, I remember getting to fly to their house for a week or so at a time. I still love going to their house. Since they are our closest family now that we live in Nashville, I decided we should take a trip to see them, and let Brice and Rider experience going to see the grandparents. So, one Monday morning about 2 months ago, we loaded up the car - me and the two boys and made the 5 hour drive to Troy, IL - pretty close to St. Louis. Thankfully, the drive was very uneventful. In fact, my bladder cooperated, and we didn't even have to unload everyone on the way there...we drove through Mickey-Dee's for lunch, I fed Rider in the parking lot while Brice ate his nuggets and we were back on the road in under 15 min. (One reason why diapers are still an okay thing). My sister and her sweet little Max also made the trip from KC, so we got to see them, too! Bonus!

We had a great time that week. Brice - like he does with most men in our family - fell in love with Grandad - whom he lovingly calls PawPaw. PawPaw loved his new little buddy and they spent a lot of time together. Brice got to pick okra from the garden, and one afternoon, the girls took the little boys shopping while PawPaw and Brice stayed home and napped together. In fact, Brice took a nap on his lap - if you know my kid, he doesn't do that with anyone! How special! :) Brice sure does love this man, and I mean, really, how could you not???

Rider and I shared a room - which didn't allow for a ton of sleep for me, but we managed, and he got all kinds of love from Grandma. Max loved playing with Rider...he was so good with him. I think Beth should have another one for Max to play with. Just a thought! :)

Grandma taught Beth and I how to can that week, too. They have a nice, big garden - that I am jealous of - jealous of the space and time to have a garden - someday I will have one, again! Anyway, their garden was full of tomatoes, so we boiled, peeled, cut, strained, boiled again, then canned our very own tomato juice. We also made some delicious chili sauce - which I have used on - yes, you guessed it - chili, and it is very yummy. How fun to learn one of those long, lost skills! I've since looked at stuff in the grocery store to do my own canning, but it is a little expensive, plus, I don't have my own veggies from a garden. I'll stick to buying them for now. :)

We also tried out a new omelet cooking method - in a ziploc bag in boiling water. Yes - it works - in fact, that's what we ate for dinner tonight. It is so easy! Crack 2 eggs, add a little milk, salt, pepper, any fillings (bacon, sausage, cheese, peppers, onions, etc) put all into a quart size ziploc bag, "smush" everything together (Brice's favorite part), place bag into boiling water for about 15 min, cut bag, and your omelet will roll right out. Try it! I love omelets and this is the easiest way to make one!

Since our trip last month, we have been able to see Grandma and PawPaw again. We recently took a trip to KC, and on our way home, we stopped off for some delicious potato soup, grilled cheese, and peach cobbler. Grandma sure does take good care of us!! Thank you for all the wonderful memories, and many more to come. We love you guys!

Friday, October 2, 2009

A Growing Boy!

I am constantly amazed and reminded how quickly babies grow up. Rider turns 6 months old on Sunday...seriously...6 months?? Where has the time gone? I can't believe he is halfway through his first year of life!
Some of Rider's favorite things:

*rolling - back to belly, then crying because he's on his belly - which is getting better - sometimes he'll flip back on his own.

*sitting - he will now sit for extended periods of time, then either face plant or fall to one side or the other.

*standing/jumping - if you're holding him, he wants to be standing in your lap. Relax? No way! He also loves his johnny jump-up...the doorway jumper thing. He gets going, and gets so tickled - it is adorable! He has an exersaucer that he will tolerate, but he must feel a little restricted in that. :)

*eating - we are still doing the nursing thing which has been a huge $ saver, but also sweet times. He has also started eating solids, and isn't a huge fan of the veggies. He enjoys his fruit, though. It's amazing, really, how anti-climactic starting solids for the 2nd baby is. I remember it being much more fun with Brice than it has been with Rider. It is fun watching his face light up when he sees his food, though. :)

*sleeping in his car seat - no, not all the time, but he does love to sleep in his carseat. For now, his naps happen there. If he naps in his bed, he will still only take a 30 min nap, but in his seat, he'll at least take one 2 hour nap for me. Yes please! It is really nice because he will do this church, the daycare at the gym, restaurants, friends' houses, you get the idea... He gets strapped in, gets his blanket, and I cover his carseat with another blanket, put him in a corner, and he drifts off to sleep without much of a peep at all. It's amazing, really. No cuddles for him - he'd rather be ignored. Not really - of course I cuddle him as much as he'll let me, but in reality, that's not much at all. :(

*visiting his friend Amy at physical therapy - he is a perfectly healthy little guy, but he likes his right arm and hand better than his left...a lot better. So, we had some tests run, and nothing is wrong with him, so now it is just a matter of getting his left hand caught up to the right. He's just a little slow on that side. Darren is still holding out hope that he'll be a left handed pitcher someday. :) He is making tremendous progress - last night, he held his bottle by himself with both hands!

*sleeping at night - yay! He doesn't sleep through the night - he still wakes up once to eat - somewhere around 3 or 4. But, he goes to bed at 7, wakes at 7 or 8, and if he does wake up at other times, he will get himself back to sleep on his own. No more walking, rocking, bouncing, etc in the middle of the night! Now, I get up for no more than 10 min, feed him, snuggle him and put him right back down. We are all much more rested at night! It is wonderful!

One of his last nights sleeping swaddled...the picture quality is terrible, but ahhh - a sleeping baby is too sweet!

Rider's little personality is really starting to come out. He is absolutely precious and has a smile that lights up his whole face. He loves to laugh with his big brother and I swear sometimes he's telling me jokes. Hard to believe he'll be crawling, walking, talking, and feeding himself so soon. For now, I am very much enjoying my baby!

Catching Up

So this morning at my MOPS meeting, we had a guest speaker in talking about scrapbooking. I am not a scrapbooker...I don't have the time, money, creativity, or really the desire to get into it. When I started my blog, I intended for this to be "scrapbook-y"...a way to document and journal what goes on in our lives. I have been so bad lately about updating, and the longer I wait, the less I want to do it because I start to feel overwhelmed, and feel like I can't leave something out. So, I am going to be playing catch-up the next couple days. Hopefully my blog readers won't get overwhelmed by all the entries I plan to post. Enjoy, and hopefully I can be more faithful in documenting our lives - so at least my children will have something to look back on - even if it isn't a scrapbook!