Tuesday, September 30, 2008

"I get by with a little help from my husband..."

I came around the corner into Christopher's room and found him like this. He then immediately turned around to grab his lambs. Ryan and I joke that he has been "eyeing them up" for the past seven months, plotting and scheming how he will get his lambs. So now the moment has come he has succeeded, alas we will lower his crib tonight. Christopher will have to come up with a new plan to get his little lambs.

His first finger food: mango. He loves feeding himself.

Lately I have been feeling the effects of sleep deprivation. Instead of waking less during the night, it seems Christopher has regressed and wakes more often. Two nights ago after midnight CRW awoke for the third time since his 8pm bedtime. (We recently moved his bedtime back). So I asked Ryan, please could he get up and give him a bottle. This worked out well for a few reasons. One, Ryan hadn't seen him all weekend since he went on a fishing trip. This way he got to spend a little quality time with his son. Two, I don't think I have a lot of milk in the evening/night and maybe this is why CRW wakes freqently; he isn't getting full. And finally three, I get a more solid stretch of sleep and feel better the next day only waking once. Since it is the beginning of the night Ryan is helping with, he still gets a good stretch of sleep himself before waking for work. I feel a little guilty asking for this help, after all this is my full time job. Also I do worry about missing a feeding and how this will impact my milk supply. But we have done this for two nights now and I feel more rested. We will take it day by day and see how things go.

This weekend Christopher and I went to my parents house in Delaware. ("How about being wisked away to Delaware? Hi I'm in Delaware.") -->name that movie. It was a great time, with Aunt Sarah, Uncle Kevin, Baby McClain, Aunt Laura, Uncle Jason, cousin Leif and Grandmom and Granddad, oh and Grandma Millie too. And Sam the dog. Needless to say it was a full house. We relaxed, napped, played games and played with the kiddies. Christopher could not take his eyes off of Leif. And his skills flourished with all the observing going on. He is crawling all over the place. His vocalizations are changing (we heard "Dada" a couple of times.) I love watching the boys play.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Christopher has been hard at work learning to crawl. It is a process. It started a few weeks ago when he'd lay on his tummy with both his shoulders and legs in the air as he rocked liked a rocking horse and occasionally scoot backwards. Then he'd have short moments up on his toes or knees. After a day or two of teasing us with this, he finally figured out how to stay up on all fours. (See previous posting for this video). Which brings us up to the past week. Christopher has been making progress at moving forward. He seems to prefer bringing the left hand out first, then maybe the other hand follows, or he just flops on his stomach inching forward. Over the weekend he has made three consecutive crawls before stopping for a rest. I love watching him learn this skill. He's blossoming before our eyes. On Sunday he clapped his hands for his Grandmother Lola, then yesterday he does patty-cake almost on demand! He is so pleased with himself. Last night before bed, we had family play time and Christopher amazed us with his ability to change positions agilely and quickly. Like an old pro: sit up, lay down, pivot, sit back up, clap hands, lay down, up on knees, crawl, flop and repeat. He is such a joy.
Pulling things out of his play basket.

Riding a goose in the back yard.

A loving gaze at his Lulu.

Playing with Matt during a dinner date at Mark and Stephanie's.

Three good-looking lads; Matthew, Brandon and Christopher.

Matt: "Hey, how'd you get my paci?" Christopher: "Heh heh, when you weren't lookin', Cuz!"

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

More Pics From Lola

Below are some pictures from Lola from our weekend warrior project:

Jason measuring and cutting.

More saw action shots...

Christopher watched the project from his blanket on the front lawn. I like how he is looking at his Papa.

I like this shot. Everyone is happy to see Christopher.

Kevin: "Can't wait till our little baby is here, hon"

"Mom and Dad are fixing the house up nice for me."

I think Ryan looks sexy in this picture. Something about a man with a hammer...

Blowing in insulation.

This is a nice action shot of the weekend.

The Mick and Sue team.

Yikes, what a mess!

A Fresh New Look.

The home improvement projects never seem to cease here on Bush Street. This past weekend we summoned family and friends to assist us in re-siding the house. We decided to make it extra challenging and do it on a record breaker hot weekend, with rain in the forecast! Thank you to everyone who sacrificed a day off to help us tackle this huge project. In addition to re-siding the house, we removed the old pitiful insulation and hired a team to blow-in cellulose insulation. This should make our heating bill a little more friendly this winter, and keep our little family snug and warm. To remove the old insulation, the guys pulled off the exterior slat boards, pulled out the insulation, then nailed the boards back up. In the meanwhile, you could see the interior plaster walls! It was weird to see our house so exposed. Speaking of exposed, we were nervous Friday night as we listened to the rain pound our house, which already had some siding removed. We had our doubts the weather would hold off enough to let us get this big project completed. There was so much in the setup: rent scaffolding, rent dumpster, coordinate help and gather tools and materials. If we weren't able to work as planned, I don't know what we would have done! Well mother nature looked out for us, as Saturday came and went without any showers. Sunday though, whew what a scorcher! I really felt bad for everyone working so hard in 95 degree heat. I encouraged everyone to drink water, take breaks and passed out Popsicles. Christopher was a champ, sleeping through men hammering on the wall just outside his crib. The inside of our house was so loud, while as many as eight to ten hammers pounded at one time. In the end, we completed the insulating, the house wrap and 3/4 of the siding. We should complete the job this upcoming weekend. So far, it looks great. Again to our crew: thank you, thank you, thank you!

Good-bye old!

Friday night Ryan begins removing the old siding on the back wall.

Early Saturday, we continue removing the insulation. See the interior wall? Yikes! Mom was clean up crew. I don't know what we would have done without her.

Half way done removing the insulation...phew! The hose running past Kevin's feet was connected to a shop-vac that blew in the insulation through two inch holes drilled through each board.

Jason helping getting the job done.

Sunday morning, we continued to wrap the house with fan-fold, which protects the house from wind and weather exposure. Mom was as good as two men this weekend, this is no surprise.

Finally! We begin cutting siding and nailing it up.

Not too tight, it needs to bend with heat exposure.

This is the foreman on the job, Donnie. He is a friend of Ryan's from the bass club. Without him, this project would have been impossible. Here, he is leveling up the starter strip.

Here is the house 3/4 the way done. Next weekend we will finish the trim, soffits, spouts and shutters. The weekend after that we replace all the windows. Then I can get started painting the front door, pick out light fixtures, and of course, the landscaping!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Keep On A Rockin' Me Baby...

Christopher's newest talent; getting on all fours.
This one is for you Laura; Plank Pose.

Christopher in action. It is amazing how good he is getting after only a few days of practice. Could this mean he'll be crawling soon?

The last video, Christopher backed up against the closet door. He liked the sound of his feet kicking against the door. I like his reaction.

On a mushy note...

Happy 3rd Anniversary Ryan! Remember shortly after we met when I asked you "where do you see yourself in five years?" and you said "married with a kid"? Well here we are, five years later. Wow, I'm glad you were right back then! I love you now more than ever and am so happy with the life we have together. I enjoy watching you being a father, seeing how much you love Christopher and sharing in all the joys of parenthood. You're the greatest hubby and Daddy. I love you.

Go Ravens!

The Ravens' littlest biggest fan.

Watching the opening game with Aunt Kristi.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Playdate With Cousin Matthew

"Get this kid off my face!"

Thursday Christopher played with his third cousin, Matthew. They are three weeks apart. The first time they set eyes on each other, Christopher had a look on his face that said "who the heck are you and what are you doing in my excersaucer?". In all it was a good day (I had Matt from 7:30-3:30). The boys are on similar schedules, which was good and bad in a way. There was only one rough patch, between 12 and 1pm, when both boys were hungry. I ended up nursing Christopher, with Matt leaning against my thigh while I gave him a bottle. There, problem solved! The boys were great, taking naps simultaneously which gave me a reprieve.

Beep... Beep... Beep!

That is sound of Christopher backing up. They say babies learn to go backwards before they go forwards, and Christopher is no exception to the rule. He has been on the move these past few days, scooting backwards that is. During this past week, Christopher has perfected getting up on his knees. I have been trying to keep track of his "firsts" and this blog has been my best way of tracking them. As time permits, I then document these moments more artistically on paper via CRW's scrapbook. Sometimes its hard to nail down an exact date when a "first" occurred. Although he has been practicing getting up on his knees all week, I think yesterday was the longest and most frequently he accomplished this task. Also yesterday, he picked up a Cheerio with his pincher grasp (thumb and forefinger) and placed it in his mouth for the first time. Then he proceeded to do this several more times! He is changing before our eyes. Here is a sequence shot of Christopher scooting backwards around our coffee table:

And he keeps going and going and going...

Our Cheerio Eater: