Sunday, January 30, 2011

Tummy...One of Our Favorite Things?

For a while now, when we try to put Elijah on his tummy, he just rolls himself right over. I've just come to the place where I'm okay with him not crawling. It really is easier for him to just stay in one place, right where I put him down. He can't do that forever, but for now, it's okay. I have friends whose babies of the same age or even younger are cruising all over the place, but Elijah has been happy to be stationary. Not for lack of our trying, though. We try to give him lots of opportunities on his tummy, but they all last for three seconds, tops. He knows he can get off of his tummy and is about eleven million times happier on his back.

Until this week.

Just in the last 4 or 5 days, Elijah has finally started showing interest in things that are out of reach. He'd been doing that, but just fussing or crying because he couldn't reach something, but now, he's becoming adventurous! He even seems to throw his toys intentionally out of reach, and then reaches, reaches, reaches...until he face plants in the direction he was reaching! He's getting better at catching himself with his hand, but even when he doesn't, he seems to be proud of himself because that's what he was trying to do. This is in contrast with before-when he did fall accidentally, he'd hit the ground and just start crying because he didn't want to be there! So, now, he falls onto his tummy towards whatever he's reaching for, and then pushes himself up on his front arms and kinda wiggles around like a fish out of water. He doesn't seem to even be trying to move forward, but he is figuring out that he can change locations this way. Yesterday morning, for example, he rolled back and forth from back to tummy to back to tummy all over the floor. He loved getting right by the bookshelf and touching the baskets. Childproofing, here we come! He still doesn't stay on his tummy forever, but he'll stay even up to a minute before rolling to his back, and then from his back he'll intentionally roll onto his tummy again! I think he just might end up crawling after all!!

But wait...there's more! Twice now I have gone in to his room in the mornings and found him on his tummy!!! The other day he'd been talking a little so I knew he was awake, but then he started crying, and when I went in, he'd rolled onto his tummy-what a surprise! This morning, though, he was still asleep and I went in to wake him up (strangely, he had a rough time last night. Lots of screaming/crying, and we couldn't figure out why! Because of that, he was tired (so were we!), so he slept later, but I woke him after a little while so we could go to church). I woke him up from being asleep on his tummy!!!!! I can't believe he rolled onto his tummy and then chose to sleep that way!!! When I put him down last night, the last time, after an extra nursing, lots of rocking from mommy and daddy, baby oragel, etc, he was on his back, and I only heard a couple little cries from him before he fell asleep. I was SO surprised to find him sound asleep on his tummy! He's old enough now to pick how he wants to sleep, I think! :)

*Side note. He has been going down so well at night since the whole cry-it-out thing in November. It was so worth it and I will tell that to whoever wants to know! But that's why last night was weird. He was screaming, not just crying, and so that's why we kept going in there. So don't be alarmed, dear reader. We haven't caved on what we think is best for him, but we also don't ignore him when things sound off! :)

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

The Life of a Renter

Dear Maintenance Man,

When you came a few weeks ago, I was happy at the thought that you cleaned under the stove top. If it was dirty enough to prevent the burners from lighting, it must have been nasty. You got the burners to light again, so I thought it must be in great shape down there!

Well, this week the burners aren't lighting again. If it was as easy as cleaning them, I thought I could figure this thing out. I was very proud of myself when I finally figured out how to get the stove top off. My pride quickly turned to horror when I saw what lay beneath.

I must have misheard you last time, when you said you cleaned it. I want to throw up! I most certainly have not been cooking enough to drop all that JUNK down there! I am partly responsible for the oily mess on the bottom left, but I haven't eaten pretzel combos in years (yes, that's a pretzel combo in the middle...or at least it used to be, I think!), and I haven't thrown matches or nails or thumbtacks or five different kinds of pasta into the cavernous openings under the burners! I understand the occasional noodles falling through. But who was eating doritos over the stove?!?! And the bigger question, how could you have opened this up three weeks ago and left it that way?!?!?!

This makes me nervous about the dryer whose lint hose you also "cleaned." It is also working better, but these things are important to do correctly, I feel.

So yes, I cleaned that stove top up. I was nervous around all the wires and lines that I know contain gas, especially since they won't light. I felt like I was "playing with fire," so I didn't use any cleaners or chemicals, just water and far more than a healthy amount of paper towels. It's not great-looking down there, but now I don't need to throw up at the thought of what's lurking below deck!

What does it look like now? Well, trust me. It's better this way.


Sunday, January 23, 2011

A Tour of Our Home

To see our new home, go to this link:

Our Home

Christmas Vacation in Pictures, Final Installment

Josh, Dad, and James all worked on assembling the swingset. Sadly, it is still incomplete, but we can sit on it and swing...softly. No slide or see-saw yet. Apparently swingset assembly is a direct assault on manhood. It says to tighten all the screws every day. Impossible.

Elijah still loves bathtime! His favorite toys these days are the brightest colored bath-squirters, the hot pink stingray and the lime green seahorse!
A close-up of the seahorse.
The only way we could get a good family picture was to give EZ an ornament to gnaw on. Otherwise he kept tugging on my necklace, crying, or trying to leap out of our arms!
New clothes from GrandSarah. Unfortunately, he's growing much faster than expected and only got to wear this a few times! It was super cute, though!
Sporting his new suspenders from Tia Jen!
Our ATS class started! I spoke at the retreat!

We have an awesome bunch!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

A Walk in the Park

...or to the park, rather. We have a little park/dog run just at the end of our street. Josh was working on training Jewel to walk nicely and not pull (we've totally dropped the ball on that one! Her training has been mostly limited to when she stays at the Howards. We just don't walk her much!).

It was a pretty chilly day, so EZ had to get all decked out in his winter clothes.
BaBa took him on his first slide experience. He didn't actually seem to care. Soon, though!
On the other hand, he LOVED swinging! It's so cute!
Here he's watching his Uncle Josh swing so high. It was hysterical to watch Elijah's head go back and forth following Josh.
Becca and Allison got to use the grown-up swings! :)

Friday, January 21, 2011

Christmas Vacation in Pictures, Part 4

Dad got Elijah a couple hunting outfits. Except James doesn't like me to call them outfits. Sets of clothes? :) This one is hilarious-it has an opening like real hunting clothes (I guess. I've never had real hunting clothes of my own.)!
Mom and Dad worked hard on trying to get Elijah to stay on him tummy so he can start learning to crawl. To no avail so far, though-he just rolls himself right over.
I love my little cuddlebug!
We worked on sending out our Christmas letters. Elijah wanted to be with me while I signed them!
I'm not sure what they were doing, but Jen and EZ had a great time playing with a straw...
What cuties!
Josh thought EZ's exersaucer looked like fun. Too bad Josh is too big to sit in it!
Elijah started eating teething biscuits-he loved them!!!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Christmas Vacation in Pictures, Part 3

Elijah's favorite thing about his first Christmas was the wrapping paper. Chewing on it, specifically. Actually, he cut his first tooth on Christmas Day, and his second five days later!
I had to unwrap his presents for him and try to get the paper away before he actually ate any of it! He didn't seem at all interested in what was inside the paper!!
Uncle Josh thought this looked like a good method, so he tried it on one of his gifts.
Here Elijah is modeling two of Tia Jen's presents. Kristi made her a mug warmer (is that the right terminology?) for her multiple cups of tea each day, and I made her a head wrap with some fabric I had used to make a baby blanket. Doesn't he look cool?
I was excited to receive this "Baby's first Christmas" ornament from my grandparents! It just seemed like we should have one of those!
It was so fun having everyone here! I love Dad's smile in this picture!
We had a bit of an electronic Christmas! :) Josh got a kindle (and promptly began staying up hours later than everyone else reading)!
I got a laptop (let me just say I was SO stoked about this! My husband is the GREATEST!!!)!!! I have no idea what I was doing with my expression in this photo. Sneaky face?
Even Elijah got a laptop! Mickey Mouse's voice says the colors and numbers, though to me they all sound the same. Who decided (fifty years ago?!) that kids should learn from a mouse who sounds like it's talking underwater?I told you you'd see Josh eating Elijah again. Here's another example. We got about ten of these same shots, trying to get one with Josh smiling. He started each photo smiling so angelically, then timed it perfectly so that when the camera actually took the picture, his mouth was open!Jen and Josh performed some acrobatic feats for us! :)
We took a sweet family photo! I really like how it turned out!
Is Josh eating Jen in this photo?
Elijah's bib says "Merry Christmas, ya'll"!! He's ready for Christmas dinner...which for him, was the same as any other day!
Josh is ready to dive in to the fondue!
We had cheese fondue for lunch...
...and really, chocolate fondue for dinner. We really go all out for Christmas dinner around here!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Christmas Vacation in Pictures, Part 2

Wednesday, my dad and siblings arrived! Everyone was thrilled to get to see Elijah again. He had changed so much since last time they'd seen him, and this was Josh's first time to meet him!

Strangely, the above may be the only normal picture with these two. Every other picture involves Uncle Josh trying to eat his nephew. You'll see.
All the playing with his grandson wore Baba out. Dad waited to pick his grandma name until he got here and Elijah was chattering away all the time, "Ba ba ba ba ba." Dad ensured that his name would be easily pronounced by his grandson!
We had lots of visitors! GranSarah and Ramon came...and brought Grandmother with them! We hadn't seen her since July, so it was a treat!
Pop Art and Gigi came a couple days later. Elijah had skipped his morning nap, which made for a cuddly baby!
Uncle George, Aunt Sara, Rebecca, and Allison came a couple days later. We had fun!
Uncle George demonstrated the fireman hold on Elijah. :)