Sunday, October 31, 2010

14 Months

Somehow, 13 months just passed right by without a blog post.  Oops!

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Max is becoming more of a little boy every day.  He jabbers, “vrooms” toy cars across the floor, has opinions, understand willful disobedience, and is constantly interacting with us. 

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He loves to walk behind push toys and cruise along furniture.  He’ll let go and stand on his own for a few seconds, and he loves walking around the house while I hold his hands.

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Max can certainly climb!  He’s not an expert (yet…) but he surprises me with the places he can reach.  He’s often sitting on top of Alex’s train table and other unusual spots.

He just took his first steps on Friday night, but that’s a post of its own…as soon as I can get the video to load!  Grandma & Grandpa Schurman were here for Max’s first steps!September2010 153

He loves ride-on toys.  He sits on the Bounce & Spin pony several times throughout the day, and he giggles and jumps for quite a while!  He climbs on and off easily from the toy train and 4-wheeler, and Alex even let him ride the little tractor in the garage today.  Max doesn’t get far on his own, but Alex is always willing to climb on behind him and “zoom” Max around the house.

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Max LOVES snacks!  I’ve heard from many nursery workers at church that Max could just eat for the whole hour he’s in there.  He’s on a Goldfish cracker kick right now, and (thanks to Aunt Deb) he’s probably tried every flavor they make.  He also likes any other type of cracker, teddy grahams, and even (sadly…) the dog’s food.  He’ll drink any kind of juice, is starting to drink plain white milk (rather than milk mixed with yogurt), and loves it when Mommy shares a sip of lemonade from her straw.  He hasn’t quite gotten the hang of sipping through the straw yet, so I have to do the finger on the straw trick to drop it into his mouth.

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Max eats whatever we eat at mealtime, but his favorite is CARBS with veggies as a close second.  Most meats (except for ham) require a bit of encouragement.  His favorite breakfast is a big pile of dry cereal and some small chunks of fruit.  He ADORES pizza and garlic bread.  He also loves when Mommy feeds him soup – especially broccoli cheese soup!

We’re all done with baby food except at for fruit & cereal at bedtime.  Since he’s no longer nursing, Max needs a little something on his tummy overnight. 

I shouldn’t say Max is no longer nursing, as I still let him nurse for a few minutes in the early morning.  He goes to bed around 8 PM, usually sleeps all night, and he wakes at about 6 AM.  I’m not ready to be up for the day, so I offer him 5 minutes of nursing and he’ll sleep until around 7 AM.  At some point, I’ll have to give that up…but it’s just so convenient right now!  If he wakes during the night, he gets a quick kiss and cuddle, then gets put back in bed.  He’ll usually cry for a few minutes and then go back to sleep.

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He doesn’t talk as much as Alex did at this age, and he certainly doesn’t use as much sign language as Alex did.  In fact, Max will NOT watch the Baby Signing Times videos.  Flat out refuses.  His only sign is “all done” when he’s finished eating.

His short list of words:

seez (please)
I see!
bup (up)
dot (hot)
mmmm (if something looks good to eat)
whassat? (what’s that?)
and possibly…ba-ba (dog)

There are a few other words (birdy & tree, for example) that Max has repeated, but he doesn’t use them on his own yet.  And yes, he DOES say dance and knows what it means.  It’s adorable! ;)

His favorite way to communicate is still screaming and shrieking, but he’s starting to jabber a lot of nonsense sentences as if he’s telling you something. 

Max’s favorite video is an old “Kids Sing Praise” VHS cassette.  He loves to watch the children singing.  Other than that, he watches what his big brother watches…and we only do TV before breakfast and before dinner…or 20 minutes of the praise video while Mommy takes a shower.

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Favorite toys?  Whatever Alex has…cars, trucks, tools, trains.  He likes the musical table, Bounce & Spin Pony, and he loves to play with puzzle pieces.  I often catch him putting dog food down the floor vent.  (Sigh.)  He also loves to turn the TV on and off, dump all the kitchen towels from the drawer onto the floor, push all the buttons on the living room telephone…you get the picture ;)

Other “stuff”

  • using his big boy carseat, but still rear-facing
  • an excellent sleeper, although he sometimes fights his morning nap…usually he sleeps from 10/10:30 AM until 11/11:30 AM and then again from 2:30/3 PM until 4:30/5 PM…with a bedtime of 8:15 PM
  • loves to play with Alex in the bathtub
  • thinks his Daddy is just amazing
  • won’t say Mommy’s name, but his favorite person is definitely Mommy
  • doesn’t really snuggle except at bedtime…and then he climbs up my lap, buries his head on my shoulder, and wraps his little arms around my neck while I sing to him   
  • insists on a Bible story whenever I put him in bed – naptime, nighttime, whatever…he points to the book and say “seez, seez”.
  • loves having a small blanket to cuddle in his hands as he sleeps – usually uses a super-soft minky “taggy” blanket that my aunt made for him, but any small blanket will suffice
  • has a little “game” with Daddy when Max is in the high chair.  Max looks right at Daddy with a cute little grin, makes this funny little grunt while tensing his whole body, and waits for Daddy to do it in return.  They go back and forth with this during dinner.
  • is getting interested in using a fork, but it usually ends up getting tossed to the floor after about 5 minutes. 
  • while in the car, plays the same “game” with Daddy that Alex used to play.  Max will call out “Dada!” and Daddy replies with “Max!”  This is all done in a growly voice.  It’s so cute!     October2010 181 
    So, that’s Max at 14 months.  I started this post about 2 weeks ago, and I’m thinking that – finished or not – I’m posting it now before he gets any older! ;)

Friday, October 22, 2010

The Pumpkin Patch pictures

It’s not too often you get a letter in the mail these days, with Facebook and e-mail available for communicating in a hurry.  I was surprised to find an envelope from Phonesavanh in my mailbox today with a letter and a stack of pictures.  So, I’m spent naptime scanning the pumpkin pictures and posting them here.


I’ll also add them into the original pumpkin patch post & delete this posting later on.  Here are our cuties, thanks to Phonesavanh’s camera…

All 5 kiddos - Mia, Bella, Gabe, Max, and Alex
(Mia is Bella & Gabe’s cousin)

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Just try taking the snack cup away from this little boy.  Max is a cracker addict!  Therefore, all pictures of him have a snack cup in his hand.


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Friday, October 15, 2010

20 lbs of Apples

So, we came home from the orchard a few weeks ago with twenty pounds of apples.  It took a while, but we’ve finally accomplished everything that we set out to do!October2010 023

Alex and Mommy spent a Sunday afternoon with the apple peeler/corer/slicer.  My kiddo loves any gadget, and this one fascinated him.  He was also pretty impressed with the long strings of apple peelings…as you can see in the picture below!

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On that day, we canned several jars of apple pie filling (minus the yellow food coloring, which is totally unnecessary).  I’d never done this on my own before, but it was actually pretty easy!  A recipe, a couple of big cooking pots, some canning jars, tongs, and basic ingredients…that’s all it took…no fancy canning equipment.  Although, if I did this every year, I’d definitely want a few canning tools!

We enjoyed dipping apple chunks into the leftover pie filling sauce.  Mmm, was that yummy!

Max enjoyed any apple chunks we passed his way, and he also had a great time playing with long strings of apple peels.

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Today, we FINALLY finished off the apples and made a crockpot full of homemade applesauce.  No recipe – I never do it the same way twice.  This time, I just put the apples and about one cup of apple cider in the crock and left to cook all afternoon. 

Since we waited so long to make it, we’ve eaten a lot of our apples already.  That means I’ll probably just stick this sauce in the fridge rather than canning or freezing it.  It’s easier this way, but we won’t have a stock of yummy applesauce for this winter.  Oh well.  That’s what I get for being a procrastinator!

Alex “helped” by eating any apple chunks that hadn’t peeled properly. 

October2010 043Max helped by devouring anything that fell to the floor.  Occasionally, Mommy purposely tossed something his way because we weren’t spilling much!

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Hopefully it tastes pretty good made with apple cider – we’re having homemade waffles, bacon, and applesauce for dinner tonight.  YUM!

Pumpkin Patch

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Last weekend, we spent a fun morning at the pumpkin patch.  I have no pictures to prove it.  Ironically, I double-checked that Keith had grabbed extra camera batteries.  I did not double-check that I had the camera. Sigh.

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Anyway, we met my friends Phonesavanh & John and their two kids – Bella & Gabe – to spend a morning having fun together at the bestest apple orchard/pumpkin patch around. 

To get to the pumpkins, we took a wagon ride pulled by a tractor.  This was Alex’s FAVORITE, of course! 

They dropped us off at the pumpkin patch, where Alex proceeded to examine every pumpkin in the field.  That may not be an exaggeration! Finally, Daddy convinced him to pick a pumpkin and Mommy chose a pumpkin for Max.  We also got some adorable pictures…on Phonesavanh’s camera, which doesn’t do me much good!

After that, we visited the gigantic gift shop to sample delicious salsas and fresh apple cider.  Max drank two dixie cups of cider! 

We headed outside to the kids farm, hay bale maze, and “Moo Choo” train.  Max & Alex loved the animals. Max was more fascinated than I would have expected him to be.  He really liked the chickens!  Alex enjoyed petting the animals, and he really enjoyed feeding grass clippings to the cows.  (Strange child…)

They had some kid-sized tractors near the hay maze, and Alex loved sitting on those!  He also had a chance to climb up and sit on a real tractor that was on display in the kids area.

After a long wait in line, Alex got to ride the Moo Choo.  He, as usual, took it very seriously.  This is one of those barrel trains, and it takes you out of sight of your Mommy and Daddy while you make a big circle.  He didn’t mind one bit!  He never cracked a smile, but we’re used to that – the first time he experiences something, Alex takes it very seriously!

Afterwards, we grabbed a box of fresh apple donuts and left in our separate cars to meet at McDonald’s for lunch.  Unfortunately, we weren’t clear on which McDonald’s we would go…and we ended up eating our lunches separately.  Oops.

When we got home, I snapped a couple of quick pictures of my two little boys who are VERY proud of their little pumpkins!  We’ll buy a bigger pumpkin to carve later, but for now, both boys are very happy with these little ones on the front porch!

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Should I ever get the pictures from Phonesavanh, I’ll be sure to add them to this post!

Thursday, October 14, 2010


September2010 156Alex:  I would wike to go to CZS wiffout cwothes.

Mama:  I’m pretty sure they don’t let you in CVS if you’re naked, Alex.

Alex:  Oh, I guess I will haff to wear cwothes then.

(And thank goodness for that!)

Monday, October 4, 2010

Tot School (catching up)

(Alex is 33 months)

Well, I guess there’s very little evidence that we did a Cow theme. We did, although it took us two weeks and we still weren’t as thorough as we could have been. I took very few pictures, and I just didn’t consistently sit down to work with Alex in the morning. Hopefully, as I'm out of the first trimester and have a little energy again, we can do a little better from here on out!

Here are a few things we did in the past few weeks.

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Cut & Paste – just when I thought Alex was getting good with the glue, he got carried away. It started out pretty nicely with one little drop of glue on the back of each egg.

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And then he got a little carried away. I think this picture is after I cleaned up some of the mess. Can you see the amount of glue on the top piece? September2010 118

This car one was his FAVORITE! I supervised the glue, and he just ADORED “driving” the cars into the parking spaces. This one had to hang on the fridge for a while.

September2010 123 Just for fun…

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Pompoms and tongs with Alex’s friend Grace…and yes, Alex is wearing a plastic fireman’s hat!

September2010 126 September2010 127Cow magnet page – I think it’s from Making Learning Fun. You roll the number dice, and then you put the correct number of magnets on the shape.
September2010 130 September2010 131Lots of cow-themed books…

Alex’s favorite was Daisy The Dancing Cow by Viki Woodworth. He giggled every time we read him the story! “Moo-ee! I’m a hoofer!” was quoted a lot in this house! :)

We also went apple picking to finish up our apple theme from a few weeks ago, and Alex enjoyed using the apple peeler-corer-slicer to make apple pie filling, too!

And that’s all we’ve got. We really did learn about cows and the letter C, I promise! We’re having lots of fun with leaves right now, so hopefully I’ll have a better post to share next week! :)

Check out the Tot School website to see what other tots are learning about this week!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Apple Picking!

Alex has been so excited to go apple picking.  For some reason, he really took an interest in our apple week for tot school.  He couldn’t wait to go visit an apple orchard!

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I made the mistake of telling him the night before, so Alex was awake at 5 AM!  Since he’s not allowed out of bed until 7 AM, he eventually fell back to sleep (at 6:45) and slept until it was almost time to leave!  I had to quickly get some breakfast in him and get him dressed to go!September2010 172

We met Aunt Deb and Grandma S at a little orchard about 30 minutes away, and Alex had a blast!  It really was a joy to watch him get so excited about the apples.

He brought along Apple Farmer Annie, which we renewed from the library.  He had to show it to the workers at the orchard, silly boy!  The lady was so sweet to Alex, and he was excited when she gave him an apple bag of his very own.

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Even though I’ve heard great things about this little orchard, the apples weren’t anything special.  They were spotty and small.  They’ll be just fine, though, for the applesauce and pie filling we hope to make this weekend.

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We could have found nicer apples and a lot more activities at another (more expensive) orchard, but this day was quiet and low-key and fun!

Thanks, Grandma & Aunt Deb, for helping to make this a FUN day for Alex…and for Max, too! 

Alex was so excited to show Daddy all of our apples when he came home from work, especially the little bag he’d filled on his own.  And I won’t tell you how many times he’s helped himself to a little apple snack this week.  Perhaps it’s a good thing these apples are tiny!

So, apple picking with Alex was a great success.  Now, who’s coming over this weekend to do a whole bunch of canning with me? ;)

The rest of the pictures:

Max helped Grandma pick some Red Delicious…

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taste-testing…not that he could really get his little teeth into that apple

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