Monday, November 5, 2018

Halloween 2018: Halloween!

Connor was a policeman last year for Halloween.  And he had a police birthday party in February.  And he wears his police costume at least once a week just for fun.  I guess I shouldn't be surprised that he wanted to be a policeman again this year.  Luckily, the costume that was a little big last year fits him great this year.
As Austin doesn't have a clue what Halloween is, I got to decide on his costume and I wanted it to be something that partnered well with Connor's.  Austin was Connor's prisoner a.k.a. inmate a.k.a. "policemate," which is what Connor kept referring to him as.
I DIY'ed a white t-shirt with stripes and Austin's inmate number (103118, of course).You can't see it on the front because it's behind his blankie.  I opted to skip stripes on the back and went with just the number.
Daycare had a costume parade earlier in the day so I left work early in order to go to that.  Austin's class was up first.
Then came Connor's class.

Note the missing button on his chest pocket.
I said that Connor's costume at school was an off-duty cop: shirt untucked, hat askew, no belt...  As soon as we got home, I made a few adjustments.  Thank goodness for hot glue!  I fixed his belt loops that had torn and glued a button back on.  When it came time to actually dress up for the night, I made sure he looked presentable and ready for duty.
We went to the neighborhood behind ours to trick-or-treat.  They really go all out with the decorations and it's a lot of fun to be part of the crowd over there.
Our policeman and prisoner made this Halloween one to remember, for sure.  I love doing holidays with my boys - all of them!

Friday, November 2, 2018

Halloween 2018: Pumpkin Shaving

Connor was so excited to "shave" our pumpkins this year.  I guess "carve" just isn't a word he hears very much so he got it into his head that it was shave and he couldn't get past it to learn carve. Okay by me, I love that 2018 was the year we shaved the pumpkins.
The McHusband and Connor got started while Austin was napping.

After I fed Austin a most nutritious lunch of ravioli, he joined in the shaving fun.

The first pumpkin and its proud creators.

Connor had taken it upon himself to clean the pumpkin and Austin, in true monkey-see/monkey-do fashion, also had to do some pumpkin scrubbing.

Then it was time to take the pumpkins down to the hay bales at the end of the driveway.  With our house so far back and behind trees in addition to the fact that we don't get any trick-or-treaters, it makes no sense to decorate the front porch.  Luckily we had leftover hay from planting grass seed so I was able to set up a little something closer to the street.

I love how excited Austin is in this picture.
Connor couldn't wait to put candles in his pumpkins and transform them into jack o'lanterns.  He even dressed for the occasion in his glow-in-the-dark skeleton pajamas.
Connor was pretending to be a zombie. 

I love my little spider pumpkin holder.  Even if we don't get around to any pumpkin shaving, at least one pumpkin will be ready for Halloween. 
Actual Halloween celebration up next!  And by "next," I mean soon...ish.  Definitely before Christmas.


Sunday, May 27, 2018

Austin: 13 Months

Well, that year flew by.  You know that saying, “The days are long but the years are short”?  That was my life for the past year.  And I don’t think the long days and short years are over, but maybe the days will be a little shorter and the years a little longer with Austin being older.
First the requisite apology: I am a major mom failure when it comes to documenting you, Austin, and I’m so sorry about that.  But man, going from one kid to two was so much harder than from none to one.  Being a full-time working mom-of-two means I don’t often have the time or energy for much extra in general and blogging definitely falls in to that category.  But let’s see if I can make it up to you a little.
At a year (or so), you are a much better sleeper, although you’ve had some stints where you wake up and can’t get yourself settled.  Thankfully that usually occurs between 8 and 10 in the evening as opposed to the middle of the night.  We are currently working on weaning you off your bedtime bottle and that’s going…okay.  You were really mad at first when the bottle was empty before you were ready, but you’re slowly coming around to realizing you don’t really need it and you’re ready for bed.  I’m not in a huge hurry to get rid of the bottle because it’s a few more minutes with you each weeknight.  You are in bed between 6 and 6:30 and since we don’t get home until 5:20 to 5:30, I don’t get much time with you in the evenings.  So I’ll take the snuggles while I can get them.
You are into everything.  Please imagine the exasperated tone with which I might say that.  I love watching you explore and figure stuff out, but sheesh, could you just sit still with a toy for five minutes every once in a while?!  You love pushing cars around, throwing the “bah-bah” and having it tossed back to you, and putting stuff in stuff.  You will look at books for a few minutes and I hope we can spend more time actually reading them in the next month or so.
You are a climber already.  You get yourself right up onto anything that’s the right height for you, and you try desperately to get yourself up onto the couch but you aren’t quite tall enough (thank goodness!)  Stairs aren’t even a challenge any more and you climb on up those like you’ve been doing it for forever.  You are better at turning yourself around so you can go down them on your belly feet-first (as opposed to head-first like you used to try), and I love to watch you approach the stairs then back up a bit  and pivot on your belly to get your feet hanging in the right place.

You like to be wrestled with and held upside down.  You are going to be our little daredevil.  Let’s not dwell on that part of your personality…
You are going to be walking any day now.  You are standing yourself up in the middle of the room and you have taken a random step or two recently, but you aren’t off and (literally) running just yet.  However, I expect that by the end of June, you will be walking well and we will rarely find you on all fours.  Yay?
Like Connor was at this age (and continues to be), you are a great eater.  You absolutely love green beans and peas and sweet potatoes.  Baked beans, scrambled eggs, bananas, blueberries, Cheerios.  You like applesauce and Greek yogurt, chicken sausage and breakfast sausage, and the various pasta dishes and casseroles I’ve made.  I hope you continue to have a diverse palate and don’t suddenly start turning your nose up at anything.
Other than pink eye and the daycare snotties, you have been a healthy kid.  No illness that required antibiotics – hooray for the gut biome remaining intact!  At your one-year check-up, you weighed 24.5 pounds (88th percentile), your height was 95th percentile, and your head circumference was 92nd percentile.

Speaking of your head, you’ve already had one haircut and another one is on the horizon.  Connor was and continues to be the same way with seeming to need a haircut every month or so.  Thank goodness for those free haircuts every 10.
You are a mama’s boy, but you sure do love your big brother and your daddy, too.  And Monte, he’s a favorite as well.  You love to crawl all over him and he is so good to put up with you.  You love going for walks and being outside in general, and I will like that more for you once you are walking and you can be up off the ground.  You love your baths and I think we’ll have a blast with the water table this summer.  And you still love the vacuum, which is annoying since you chase me around while use it.  But I suppose I’d rather have you like it than be afraid of it.
You communicate via sign language and a few words right now.  You say uh-oh, “bah-bah” for ball, “aw-duh” along with the sign for all done when you are ready to get out of your highchair, and plenty of da-das but I’m not sure that’s always dada (as in dad).  You’ve said more ma-ma lately, but I don’t know that it’s mama yet.  Soon, I hope!
Austin, you are AWESOME!  We are so glad you rounded out our family.  Connor tells me all the time, “We just love our Baby Austin” and “Baby Austin is so cute, isn’t he, Mommy?”  When I pick you two up from daycare, Connor always asks if you had a good day.  Austin, you are very lucky to have such a great big brother.  I love you, Austin!

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Halloween 2017

I need to fulfill my promise to future Austin, who I'm sure is totally awesome, and get his six-month post written up.  But first, I need to recap our Halloween this year because it was a lot of fun and I don't want to forget some of the details.

I'm calling Halloween 2017 Connor's first REAL Halloween.  In 2014, he was an infant; in 2015, he was sick and still didn't "get" it; in 2016, he just wasn't into the holiday and told me "Nothing" over and over again when I (or anyone else) asked him what he wanted to be for Halloween.  But 2017 was his year.

Connor knew a long time ago that he wanted to be a police officer for Halloween so I ordered his costume from Party City and it looked great!  The only negative was the hat.  It was so small!  So I had to shell out more money for a better and bigger hat, but it was worth it because it's more adjustable and will fit for a long time and it really completes the costume/uniform.  The hat arrived the day that Bass Lake Park hosted its annual Spooktacular Event - perfect timing!  Connor actually won a runner-up prize, which I'm sure wouldn't have happened if he hadn't had his hat.
Connor got to wear his costume to daycare on Halloween.  I didn't get a costume for Austin, but I dressed him in black and white stripes so that at least when he was with Connor, I could say he was Connor's prisoner.  I snapped a few quick and not-so-great photos before they headed to school.  (Please note the 6-9 month pants that are barely containing our little chunkers.)
I wasn't going to do trick-or-treating since Austin typically goes to bed by 6:30, but the McHusband talked me into it and I'm so glad he did.  I got Austin changed into his pajamas and gave him a bottle then put him in the stroller and kept my fingers crossed for general happiness followed by sleepiness.
Apparently I wasn't the only one tired from being up since four-something-in-the-morning because he dozed off pretty soon after Connor started ringing doorbells.
We had talked to Connor about how he'd say "Trick or Treat!" or "Happy Halloween!" when people opened the door.  He combined those and told everyone "Happy Trick or Treat!"  Yes, it was as adorable as you imagine - my little police officer toddler in his slightly-too-big costume and hat combining those phrases with gusto and holding out his little pumpkin for a treat.  I wanted to go to even more houses just to hear him say that over and over again.
The neighborhood we went to had lots of houses decorated with lights and blow-ups and all other assorted Halloween paraphernalia.  Some stuff was spookier than others but Connor didn't let it faze him.  Only one thing made him nervous and it would've gotten to even a seasoned trick-or-treater.  It was a hairy hand/spider thing mounted toward the ground that jumped out randomly.  Connor saw it before he hit that house, and I thought he wouldn't go past it but apparently the pull of more candy was stronger than the fear of being gotten.  He later told us, when asked how he liked Halloween, that he "didn't like those scaries."
Connor loved all the "Christmas lights," as he called them, that people used.  We stopped at one house that was all lit up and Connor told the homeowner, after he'd gotten his candy and said thank you, "I like all these lights.  They're pwetty."  She just loved hearing him say that totally unprompted.  When he joined us in the street, he looked ahead at the other houses and their lighted decorations, kinda motioned to the general surroundings with his arm, and said, "This is so beautiful."
Something else this neighborhood had?  Adult treats!  One house offered beer or wine, one had sangria, and another was giving out condiment cups of vodka Gummy Bears!
Connor loved Halloween and as we were heading home, he said, "But Halloween isn't over yet" because he could still see the lights on and people out.  But he was tired so it wasn't too tough to get him focused on walking home.  Austin had woken up by this point but was just content to ride in the stroller all snuggly under a fleece blanket.

Final verdict?  Halloween 2017 was a big hit all around, and we are excited to do it again next year with two trick-or-treaters.  And more of those Gummy Bears.  And maybe our own Thermos of an adult beverage in the stroller's cup holder.