Monday, June 27, 2011

Playing Catch-Up

We had such a super fun summer day yesterday that I almost forgot my guest post on living with the lowrys!  Please head over and check out what I had to say about my favorite vacation pic, and keep reading to see more great shots.  Today's made me text hubby to ask him to bring home some beer!  And I can't wait to see Shannon's pics when she gets back!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

My 24th Week in Droid Pics

We survived another week without Hubby!

JD woke up super early, so there was plenty of time to put finishing touches on his Father's Day card.

Hubby came to the playground with us before he left for his business trip.

JD was so sad after Hubby left, but a Target treat made everything better.
We hit the beach super early.  Our rule: If you want to bring it, you carry it.

We had the beach to ourselves for the first hour!

O looooooooves the sand!
We spent the morning at the LI Children's Museum. JD took advantage of being the only kid in the block room.

And O practiced his drumming.

In the afternoon, we walked around the mall and visited the puppies.  awwwwww!
JD and O were both part of a Macy's photo shoot, so stickers and squeezy pouches came in handy during all the waiting.

At the end of the day, O was ready for a nap!

JD struck a pose during his car nap.
Another trip to Target.  JD has been talking about "birthday hats" whenever we mention his party, so picking these up made his day!
O turned 8 months old!  He is now pulling himself up to stand and taking steps behind the walking toys.  This is him about to squat down to pick up a toy.  I swear he is doing it months ahead of when JD did!  I'm in denial. 

I did some Old Navy shopping armed with coupons.  Who doesn't love $2 tank tops?
Hubby is home!  I got to spend some one-on-one time with O at the farmers' market, and JD loved inspecting what we brought home.

There's a big tournament at Hubby's gym this weekend, so we stopped by for a bit to check in and let JD fire off a couple emails.  He's a little workaholic.

We have one more week to get ready for JD's birthday party, so I have to get busy if I expect to make half of the crafty things I pinned.  Please keep your fingers crossed for nice weather!

Did you take phone pics this week?  I'd love to see them!  Visit Amy for the code, and link up!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

I Will Try Just About Anything

A summary of our last 24 hours:

  • JD & O both had jobs yesterday.  I did everything I could to be prepared with favorite snacks, books, and activities, but JD refused them all.  There was a water cooler in the room (which he knows all about after Hubby somebody showed him how to work the one at My Gym), and he screeched until I got him a cup, then proceeded to dump the water on the floor, throw the cup in the garbage, and then screech to begin the cycle again. Whenever another child approached him he attempted to physically push them away, and he actually succeeded in knocking down two toddlers before I could stop him.  I tried to enforce a time out, but he absolutely refused to apologize.  Embarrassing doesn't begin to explain it.  However, when it was his time in front of the camera, he really shined, and everyone on set praised him for his outstanding behavior. I was so proud of how well he followed directions, and was so relieved to see him enjoying himself.  If only they had seen what had happened in the holding room!  It is as if he was a totally different kid.  The other moms said goodbye to each other with hopes of meeting again at future jobs.  Nobody gave me more than a goodbye.  I was the mom with the kid they never wanted to see again.
  • Back at home, we went to free play at My Gym.  JD really loves free play because he can run around without the structure of the class.  When it was time to go, he threw a fit, and the owner had to help me carry him out crying.  We walked next door to get pizza for dinner, and he felt like a big boy picking out what he wanted.  People nearby were complimenting him, but when it was time to go, I practically had to drag him out while he screamed about wanting a cup.
  • At bed time, he completely freaked out when I went anywhere near his room.  I felt guilty because it had been a rough day, and I know this week is especially tough for him because Hubby is away, and one parent splitting attention for two babies isn't fun for anyone.  So, I let him stay up late cuddling with me on the couch.  He was super snuggly and even pulled his blanket up over my shoulders and pushed my head onto the pillow with the direction to "nap".  
  • The transition to bed wasn't a complete disaster, and he fell asleep quickly.  Until 2 am, when he woke up screaming bloody murder.  Sometimes he cries in his sleep a little, so I left him for a couple minutes to see if he would settle himself down, but it only escalated, and he woke up O.  I got him out, and he sat reading like a perfect angel while I rocked O back to sleep.  But there was no way I was getting him back in that crib without his head starting to spin and new levels of screaming, so I let him sleep next to me in bed, where he woke me up a little before 5 this morning. Awesome.
  • I put them both in the car at O's morning nap time with the hopes of getting JD to take a little nap as well.  They both fell asleep, and I used the time to drive through the town's beach sticker line- where I made the mistake of shutting off the car.  JD woke up screaming, which woke up O.  Now I was the poor mom stuck in a line of cars with two screaming kids.  O finally settled into just staring at his brother, who was going to new levels of upset.  The lady selling the stickers only said "Good luck" as I drove away- not the "have a nice summer" she had said to the car in front of me.
  • After a snack and letting him run around a little, JD calmed down and we headed to his My Gym class.  We've had issues the past couple weeks with him not sitting for circle time, so we talked the whole way there about all the fun things they do in circle time, and he demonstrated his favorites from the car seat.  When we walked in, I reminded him that he was going to listen to the teachers and do circle time, but he screeched and ran wild.  He hid himself in a ball pit, so I tried the jealousy method and sat down with O for circle time.  O was loving it because he's usually sitting in his carrier off to the side, but JD started trying to get my attention by throwing all of the balls out of the ball pit. I told him to stop or we would go home.  He laughed and threw more, so I scooped them up, and left with 2 crying kids.  I told his teacher we would try once more tomorrow, but if he has a repeat performance we will have to take a break from bringing him (which scares me because he really needs the outlet for his energy, and upsets me because this is the same teacher who told me last month that he would probably be moving to the next level early because he listens to directions so well- where did that kid go?)
  • I arrived home with a plan to serve lunch and put him down for a nap.  He was an angel, giddily showing me how he was counting his raisins.  But as I write his he has been calling for me from his crib for the past 45 minutes.  He is delirious with exhaustion.
I am at a complete loss.  I called hubby and cried, and he started talking about having the babysitter come to help more often.  But that's not the kind of help I need.  I just want my good boy back.  I know I'm not perfect when it comes to discipline.  There are times that I let him see me get emotional in response to his bad behavior- especially when I am this sleep deprived, and he has heard me vent about him- both discipline no-no's.  But I do feel that I am consistent with expectations, and I follow through with consequences.  I am careful to choose my battles and acknowledge the good behavior, and Hubby and I are both becoming fluent in the caveman toddler language.

And I'm scared, because if JD was a baby who "knew what he wanted", O is certainly "strong-willed", and where JD's gross motor skills are super advanced, O is doing things even earlier.  JD is active and loud, and O is right there following his footsteps.  I actually had to ask the pediatrician what I should do when I can't get O to sit still long enough to nurse or eat a meal. (Answer: If he is gaining weight & hitting his milestones, we aren't really concerned.)  I want to enjoy my time home with JD, and I want to give O the attention he deserves, but at this moment, I just don't see how.

**Note- After writing this, I gave up on the nap and took JD out of his crib.  This afternoon should be awesome.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Tuesday Tip #6: Boon Spoon & Squeezy Pouches

I hate the original, orange Boon Spoon.  It's convenient for 5 minutes, but it's annoying to fill and more annoying to clean.

However, we love us some squeezy pouches in this house, and I want to be able to feed O the stage 1 ones easily while we are on the go.  I had seen the Plum Organics Boom Spoon attachment a while ago, but JD was already feeding himself, so I had never tried them.  Today, I gave them a test run with O, and it was much better than I expected.  I really only needed one hand, which meant I could use the other hand to do something like feed myself.    

This is perfect for when I have to pack for big days out because the spoons come in a cute little carrying case, and the pouches don't need to be in a cooler like our homemade food.  

And O was so into the squeezy pears that he didn't even try to grab the spoon or pull the food out of his mouth.  This may be our neatest feeding session to date!  I just wish Plum Organics- or any squeezy pouch maker- made stage 1 veggies.  O is probably ready for the stage 2 mixes, but I'm not ready to acknowledge that he is that big.

I can shoot pics with one hand & feed him with the other!
And a bonus tip:  I recently saw a friend out in a restaurant with her toddler, who was happily sucking on his squeezy.  I asked her where she buys them, because I'm always trying to find a good deal on them (Babies R Us currently has them 10 for $10).  She told me that different Targets sell them for DIFFERENT PRICES!  

The Target by me has them for $1.19.  The Target 20 minutes away has them for .99- regular price!  They are $1.29 & $1.49 on Target's website.  I'm not going to drive across town for 20 cents, but when I'm stocking up for 2 hungry boys, every little bit counts!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

My 23rd Week in Droid Pics

There hasn't been much blogging, tweeting, or picture taking happening around here lately because we are 2 weeks away from JD's 2nd birthday, and there are A MILLION projects going on.

On our way to a party.  Cheese!

JD starts talking about the balls as soon as we pull into the parking lot.

Playing with our new bubbles
Our train ride home from the city started like this...

...quickly became this...

...and ended like this right before it was time to get off.

This is the last time O & JD will both be in the "under 2" class at the library.  I feel pretty guilty about it, but O is just going to have to tag along to JD's big boy class from now on.  JD cannot handle sitting on the sidelines in the baby class, and Hubby is usually unable to come along.

He would not let this football go.
We went to a playdate where JD we made this gift for Daddy.
My boy is a jumping bean!

And O thinks that is amazing!

I made these to use as centerpieces for JD's party. 3 down, a couple dozen more to go...

And we grilled the yummiest steaks and paired it with a corn/tomato/avocado/spinach salad.
We had a house full of friends and their adorable children  :)

It was a good night.
It's blurry and hard to see, but JD is pretending to be Hubby talking on his bluetooth.  HAHAHA!

OUCH my poor gums.

But I can still laugh at my momma!

We FINALLY finished re-finishing our deck.  Now I'll be making trips to Pier  1 & Home Goods for decor  :)
I hope you had a great week too!  Did you take phone pics?  Head over to Amy's, grab the code, and link up!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Tuesday Tip #5: Baby Powder

I love everything about the beach, except dealing with the sticky, sandy mess when it is time to go. I will do anything to avoid getting loads of sand in the car, especially in the car seats.  It's already messy enough back there!  And I like to go to the beach first thing in the morning and stay until nap time, which means the boys fall asleep in the car, and I transfer them to their cribs. Nobody wants to sleep in a sandy bed. 

Hitting the showers on our way out is an option, but then we're all wet again, and drying off and changing is a process that usually ends in at least one of us covered in sand again.

Last year, I learned a great tip for instantly removing the sand from squirmy babies and toddlers: baby powder.  You simply shake it on when you get to the parking lot and wipe the sand off, no matter how sweaty & sticky from sunscreen you are.  

Bonus: everybody smells powder fresh after :)

Do you have a favorite beach tip?

Saturday, June 11, 2011

My 22nd Week in Droid Photos

It isn't officially summer yet, but it sure felt like it this week!  


Ava turned 3!

JD tried desperately to get her to fetch a stick. She wasn't into it.

The Greek church near our house had a fair, and we took advantage of all the yummy treats.

Mr. Potato Head time at My Gym

JD showing O how it's done

Hubby was finally home, so I left JD home with him while I took O to a go- see.

HOT town, summer in the city...

The new exhibit at the Children's Museum, Grossology, made everybody giggle!  This piece explained how farts make different sounds.

And we played in the outdoor water exhibit for the first time!

O played peek-a-boo in our beach tent. Or maybe he was trying to eat it.  Either way it kept him busy for a while.
We had a great time with friends & all the toys!  Bringing the kiddie pool was a brilliant idea by my friend Jacqueline!  

After naps, O did a little skinny dipping in the backyard.

We had a playdate (no more naked swimming), and slide + baby pool = lots of fun!

O enjoyed rubbing his peas all over his face!

We took our first trip of the season to the farmers' market.  I was so excited, it was all I could talk about for days.  

The boys were both snoring when we got home, so I sat in the car and enjoyed a giant pretzel & fresh mustard from the market  :)   mmmm
 Did you take phone pics this week?  I'd love to see them!  Grab the code from Amy and link up!

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