Thursday, December 31, 2009

John, Elise, and the train

A few days before we left for Christmas vacation, Elise came over for an evening visit. Although she was wearing a very elegant holiday outfit, she had no qualms about "playing train" with John, who was already in his PJs.

To start, Elise played conductor while John played passenger.

Then they switched roles.........

Some random pre-Christmas videos

I am very, very behind in uploading videos and pictures of John! So to avoid any confusion, I'll first upload some that were taken at home a few weeks before Christmas.

Here's John playing with his favorite kitchen toy (again), but this time it's even funnier because he's bare chested.

I've entitled the next video "From the the wall!" (Kind of like the rap song, except much, much cleaner, hehe.)

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Kami's birthday

Kami's birthday was on Wednesday, so we all got together at Stephanie's house for a chili dinner. We tried snapping some group Mommy-Baby photos in front of the fireplace, and in one of them, we're all actually looking at the camera! Amazing!

As always, John and Elise had fun playing at the coffee table. (Elise lapped him at least twice.) They enjoyed playing with Aunt Kami, Aunt Jen, and Aunt Sheri, too.

Reading a book

John loves reading books! He sits very nicely in Mom's lap and pays close attention to what's on every page. Dad got out the camera yesterday and captured us reading Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? and I Love You Through and Through.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

The new playroom

This past weekend, Daddy turned the rarely used office into a new playroom for John. This required the complete reorganization of the guest bedroom to fit all of the bookshelves from the office as well as the dismantling of several pieces of furniture and our old desktop computer. The new playroom is convenient, spacious and, best of all, carpeted!

Elise came over for a date yesterday (John's 11-month birthday!), and she and John had a great time "breaking in" the playroom. Here are some cute videos we took of them together......

First shoes!

We finally bought a pair of shoes for John at Target the other day. (We had looked around for a long time but hadn't seen any kickers worthy of John's adorably short and plump feet.) These are brown leather Oshkosh loafers with a velcro strap. They are both rugged and refined (if that's possible to achieve with a baby boy shoe), and they will look good with almost all of his clothing. Plus they only cost $14.99!

As this video shows, however, they are still a tiny bit big. John is in between sizes 3 and 4, so we got the size-4 pair so he could wear them longer.

John's train

One of John's Christmas gifts from Mom and Dad is a walker/ride-on train. (Mom decided it would be ok for John to open it a few weeks early, since he likes to practice walking around the house so much.) Here is a video of him playing with his new toy. He loves it!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Three videos from today

Video 1: John helping Mom unload the bags from our trip to the grocery store.....

Video 2: John devouring a snack of Puffs cereal.....

Video 3: John playing with a mixing bowl and the dishwasher.....

Monday, November 30, 2009

Aunt Kami's great idea

Aunt Kami and Aunt Jen came over for dinner last night. Even in her sleep-deprived, new-mom state, Aunt Kami devised an ingenious plan to entertain John - put him in an old Yuengling box and "drive" him around! Austin, you are one lucky little guy to have a mom as clever as that. Here is a video of John's box ride.

Friday, November 27, 2009


We had Thanksgiving dinner Wednesday night at Elise's grandparents' house in Austin. Aunt Kami, her sister Jill and Aunt Jen came too! As always, it was a blast watching John and Elise play together, and we all enjoyed holding Kami's adorable three-week-old baby, Austin. What a little bundle of joy he is!

At dinner, John sat in a booster seat across from Elise, who was in her highchair. While Elise politely (and neatly!) ate her cut-up pieces of ham, turkey and green beans, John made a game of throwing his on the floor. I think he maybe ate one piece of meat. So I gave him a few cubes of stuffing, and he seemed to like that. In the end, to make sure he had gotten enough to eat, we gave him some pureed baby food and puff cereal (his favorite).

After dinner, John had fun playing with Elise's walker. (Mommy followed behind him in the event of a spill.) Here is a cute video of this, narrated by Elise's mom, Stephanie.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

"Walking" with Dad

Finally, a video of John "walking" with Dad! John loves to "walk" around the house as one of us rolls behind him in the office chair. (At least there's ONE good thing about having tile floors everywhere.) Notice how easily distracted John is by the random things on the floor...... a paper Bath and Body Works bag, the tray from his highchair, the spaghetti strainer....... He HAS to put his foot on everything he passes!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Eating Chipotle!

At the suggestion of Elise's mom, I gave John some of my Chipotle the other day. I put a few spoonfuls of rice, black beans, corn and cut-up chicken on his highchair tray and waited to see what would happen. It was a big hit! As you can see from these videos, it's difficult to say what he enjoyed more about the new cuisine: eating it or playing with it.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

In the kitchen with John

As I mentioned in the last post, John started pulling up on things this week, hooray! The first things he pulled up on were the open door of the dishwasher and the bottom ledge of the refrigerator.

Here are some pictures (and a video) of John with his beloved dishwasher.........

And John with the refrigerator........

John laughs at the grossest things!

Here's a video of John laughing hysterically at Mom as she clears her throat. Gross!

Friday, November 13, 2009

10 months old!

As of November 8, John is 10 months old! Here are the answers to some questions I'm sure you're dying to know about him at this age:

Q. Can John crawl yet?

A. John still gets around by scooting on his belly. He is shockingly efficient with his scooting. Now he only uses his right foot to push off of! (The left leg he usually leaves up.) The big toe of his right foot has actually developed a blister because of this. I would be very surprised if John ever crawls on all fours because he can go everywhere he needs to go on his belly.

Here is a video of John from when he first started scooting (back in September):

Q. Can John pull himself up to standing position or "cruise" (hold onto furniture and take steps along it)?
A. John can pull himself up to standing position on a few very low, very sturdy things in the house. Today he practiced pulling himself up to standing position on the door of the dishwasher (while it was down). He thought it would be fun to play with the dirty silverware inside, but Mommy thought otherwise. John likes to stand against things like coffee tables, but he is still learning how to "cruise" them. If you put John against one end of a coffee table and an object he desires at the other end, he either tries to lean his way to the object, or he uses the wrong foot to start out and almost trips himself. (I will try to get a video of this for your viewing pleasure!)
Interestingly, while John still has a long way to go with his cruising, he is getting quite good at taking steps with someone holding his hands and walking behind him. At the beginning of this week, he couldn't take more than one or two steps at a time. (I don't think he understood that he even COULD take steps.) Now he can walk all the way across the room this way!
Q. What is John's favorite toy?

A. John is a bit anti-toy at the moment. He greatly prefers adult stuff that could in no way be considered toy-like. A few of his current favorites are water bottles, baby wipes containers, baby wipes, Mom's sunglasses, Mom's shiny wallet, shoes (open- or closed-toe -- he doesn't discriminate), and anything in the drawer of the computer desk. If I had to name one actual toy, it would be his activity table that plays music and teaches the alphabet and colors.

Q. What kinds of foods does John eat now?

A. John still eats his oatmeal every morning for breakfast. He hops up and down in his highchair when he sees Mom taking the cereal container out of the pantry! For his other "meals" he still enjoys the stage 2 pureed foods (fruits like apples, bananas, pears, prunes and veggies like sweet potatoes, squash, corn, carrots). He abhors pureed green veggies like peas and green beans.

In the last month, we've started giving him a variety of finger foods to try. He LOVES crackers, teething biscuits and bread (notice a pattern?). He likes cooked corn kernels and black beans. He does not like cut-up avocado or bananas. The jury is still out on the mesh feeders that we bought recently -- John devoured the fresh fruit and veggies we put in a feeder for him last week, but this week he won't even look at the feeder, regardless of what is inside.

Q. Does John say any words?

A. He still says "mum" all the time, but I don't think he necessarily is addressing me when he does. His new favorite word is "dat," which may be the precursor to "dad" or "that" -- can't be sure. John can also vocalize a whole bunch of other syllables that I can't even distinguish to be able to spell them here. Lately John has taken to shrieking (in excitement) at the top of his lungs. That goes over really well in public :)

Q. Just how long is John's hair now?

A. Pretty darn long. His bangs are below his eyebrows now, so I have to sweep them to one side so they don't get in his eyes. The hair coming out of his two (yes, two!) cowlicks still stands straight up in the air. John's hair is a mix between Kate Gosselin's mullet and the hair of that singer from the '80s band Flock of Seagulls: in other words, very chic.

Not surprisingly, his hair is the first thing people notice about John. "Look at that hair!" they say. "Can I touch it?" they ask.

Mommy and Daddy love you so much, John! We can't believe you are already 10 months old. Time needs to slow down!

John's sleeping positions

There's no doubt about it.......John can sleep in the craziest of positions (not unlike his father). He tosses and turns A LOT while he's sleeping. He sticks his butt in the air and then flops back down on his tummy. He moves his head from one side to the other. He rotates 180 degrees and then another 180 degrees. He rolls onto his side and then rolls back again.

I went into John's room the other day to check on him after he was nearing hour three of his morning nap (yikes!). This is how I found him. Comfy looking, right?

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Halloween night

We enjoyed a very casual, relaxed Halloween night at home. We brought two dining room chairs out onto the porch and sat there watching trick-or-treaters stroll by and handing out candy. Later, we brought the jungle jumper out for John. He stood in the jumper playing with a package of Halloween mini oreo cookies for close to an hour, which is quite impressive for Mr. Antsy Pants. John did not wear his chicken costume that night, since he had worn it the previous night for the battalion Halloween party. (We figured he had already endured enough laughs for one holiday season.)

Second trip to the pumpkin patch

We took a second trip to the pumpkin patch last Wednesday. There were not very many pumpkins left by that point, but the weather was much cooler and more enjoyable. Look at how much fun the kids were having......Elise even tried to kiss John!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

John's wake-up routine

Whenever John wakes up (in the morning or after his naps), he rolls or scoots over to the side of the crib, pulls down the bumper, and peers through the slats, watching the door and waiting for Mommy or Daddy to come get him. He kicks his legs behind him on the mattress, too. So cute!

John has the same routine when he is not ready to be put down for a nap or to be put down for bed, except that he adds to it some high-pitched screaming and fake (crocodile tears) crying. We haven't filmed it, but you can imagine what it sounds like. Not so cute!

Monday, October 26, 2009

A fun Saturday at home

John and Daddy had a good time playing on Saturday afternoon. John showed Daddy how he can stand against the activity table unassisted! (Daddy sat behind him just in case John lost his balance.)

Saturday night we met Aunt Erin and Aunt Kami for dinner at Boston's. John enjoyed eating some saltine crackers and playing with a yellow Boston's balloon. He also enjoyed the special attention he got from the female restaurant staff, hehe.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Photos from last week

John loves to play on Daddy's shoulders. (Don't you think John has his father's ears?)

John also likes to play on the tile floor. He scoots all around the living room and the dining area too. He scoots under and over objects in his path.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

At the pumpkin patch

John met up with his girlfriend Elise at the pumpkin patch in Harker Heights yesterday afternoon. It was a real scorcher......89 degrees in October! The kids were dripping with sweat, but they still seemed to enjoy themselves. The highlight was playing with (translation: eating) the hay.

I put John's new hat on him for a few of the photos. Trendy, no?

Here's Elise in her pretty brown sundress that matches John's outfit:

Here John looks at Elise:

Here Elise looks at John:

Some other fun photos from the "shoot:"