Saturday, September 15, 2018

Since School has begun...

Some good things - about a week before school started, Gideon decided to start sleeping in his crib. He sleeps through the night now also. It's great. He usually goes down rocked and read to and soothed but awake for his naps. For bedtime, he prefers we put him to sleep and transfer him. (Last night he went down awake and went right to sleep.)
If he cries more than 30 seconds, we know he's not going to cooperate and we'd better go get him and try again. (He's stubborn if he's not ready. But when he's ready, he's good about going to sleep.) When he wakes up, he's usually chill and will sometimes lie there awake looking around or "reading" whatever book is in his crib.
The only not-so-good thing is that he frequently wakes up with a poopy diaper after naptime. Like his crib becomes his toilet. (At least it's contained in a diaper and he doesn't mess with it; my brother recently shared a rough nap/poop story with me about his little girl.)

Continue down for everyone else plus more cute pictures of my fast-growing boy who is independent, a little nervous about noisy things, quite talkative, a little jealous of anyone who wants my attention, and not at all nervous about climbing!

I don't know why I took this picture, but I love that Seth is still and everyone else is a blur. Fitting!

Look out - #1 has passed me!

Twins take turns who is taller; Natalie is winning this month.

My grandma gave me this hutch when she moved and I updated it. I'm still organizing our "school wall".

Finally perfected our dessert pizza. Next it cobbler pizza....
(Pizza, sometimes "pizzi" is one of Gideon's new words this month.)

 My cousin got married this month - fun family time!

We made a trip to visit Rob's parents (still recovering from an auto accident last month), and the girls had some music fun.

Carolyn got braces.

Gideon likes outside (one of his favorite words "ou-side").
(I'm trying to sand this chair so I can stain it and then re-upholster it.)

Gideon and I go for a walk many mornings after school drop off.

Thanks to the hurricane weather, my kids have been out of school since Tuesday.

  • Tuesday we got ready for my parents coming (evacuating the beach).
  • Wednesday we went supply shopping (water, batteries, 2-burner stove)...some things we have but wanted more of or things we don't have and have been thinking of investing it to prepare for power outages. (We also did piano lessons.)
  • Thursday we got some things done around the house and took a quick trip to the park. (Hot and Humid!)
  • Friday we gave the kids a day and went to the museum. (We have a membership and my parents got in free because they were from mandatory evacuation counties.) 
  • Today we did Saturday chores and are just enjoying some free time as we watch the sky rain all day.

I tried to go back Friday for produce we'd run out of ... but that wasn't too successful. (Mom had better luck at Kroger.)

He loves to open everything - dump it out or climb in or climb up or put something inside...such an explorer these days.

Saturday morning chocolate chip pancakes...We've got chocolate for breakfast and cheese dip for supper. It's a hurricane party? ;)
(On a serious note, the hurricane has been diminishing as the weekend approached, although it has been awful for some along the NC coast, we are still waiting to see if it causes flooding or something bad for us.)

Alee being hairdresser.

 Big Screen movie time (with a few dramatic posing girls)
We've basically had time for games, music, movies, shopping, sleeping, a little of everything as the state closes down in preparation for bad weather. Now just the waiting and praying.  We feel prepared. I think.

Some videos if you like:
Kaitlyn and Alee Piano Duet (Punch Line)
Jealous Much?
Rollin' Around
I can get out!
Lickin' the Plate Clean

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

The rest of the summer!

Every thing I can think of from July 1 until now (22 August - the day of school starting):

Natalie lost her phone for a while so she put up "lost ads" around the house. Her phone case looks just like that!

 We tried to dye the ends of the girls' hair for fun with temporary hair dye. (Should last about 30 washes, which I didn't think it would, but maybe....we were headed to the beach soon, plus pool time...and we bathe and wash hair daily.)
 It was called Splat midnight (so you don't bleach the hair to color it), but it still really only showed up well on Carolyn's blond hair. (Hers got the least time exposed to dye and Kaitlyn's got most.)
 And then it was washed out after 2 days! Whatever. I told them we'd try once more to use up the rest of the bottle.

Beach Trip 2018
I always take more pictures than I can possibly use.
Gideon loved everything about the beach and pool!

 4th of July Fireworks on the beach

Edventure Myrtle Beach
(I told the kids we'd go to Edventure some time this summer - they had a great deal in June that made the cost of a year's membership the same as us making one paid visit as a family! So, of course, we did the membership.)

They have two other locations and one is in Myrtle Beach. It was cute to see, but if we hadn't been able to go "free" with our membership, it would not have been worth the cost.  (The one in Columbia is awesome; we'll have to check out Hartsville some other time this year.)

 She wants an adding machine! What a girl...

 Not much for the older kids age at this one near the beach.

Shopping time
"Why can't I have this unicorn?"

Everyone loves that little chair!

 Gideon liked his little "seat" in Grammy's beach cart.

Grandma and Gramps took us for an ice cream. (Notice Alee at the table. She doesn't eat soft serve ice cream, milkshakes, or frosty at Wendy's. What on earth? She's super picky these days about food - consistency, food safety, etc - in addition to taste.)

 Happy 1st Birthday, Gideon!

 enough birthday pictures!

Since the weekly emails (for his first year) ended after his birthday, I'll start including some Gideon updates on the blog.
 He really loves books lately. Mostly, he brings us The Very Hungry Caterpillar over and over again. But he has a few other board books he likes.

 He was playing with a magnet on the freezer here. I was watching him (because sometimes he tries to eat them when I don't - so all magnets are kept up high now), but for this day, he was playing nicely. It was fun to watch him put it on the freezer, then try to put it on the table folded beside the freezer. He experimented several minutes with it sticking or not sticking to surfaces near him until something else caught his attention and that science moment was over.

 Alee pulled out toppings for tacos and alerted me that if dad didn't come home from work soon, she would have to put back the cheese and sour cream because she had been timing it and they had been out too long! She's very aware of food safety and germs these day. (That's good, but sometimes she goes a little extreme on us.)

 We've been wanting to go at least once to the museum for their Tuesday night observatory nights, so we finally made it on a clear night to look through the telescope!

We all waited in line to take a turn.

The twins and I went to the ward pioneer activity. Kaitlyn, unfortunately, did not win her game of stick pull with her (very athletic) friend. I, however, did beat my brother (barely!)

Bath time is still a favorite time of the day. We can say, "Do you want to take a bath?" or "It's bath time!" and he knows just where to go! If the door is open, he'll walk in and stand next to the tub waiting. He plays and has fun, and after washing and playing a few minutes, he'll stand up and reach to get out. All done.

Some of the activities that my older children thought were a bit dull (one I even thought about skipping, but decided to go afterall) were the ones that caught Gideon's attention! I can't believe he has interest in things like that already. We'll start toddler time at the library this fall.

After our 12-month checkup, we needed to go carseat shopping for a bigger seat!
Shopping for what?

Alee wanted a new seat too - all her friends have a booster seat!
All her friends are not in the 90-something percentile for height with legs that can reach the floor in the van!

Kaitlyn wanted to shop for something else...(I know! I always want a new bag too!)

 Ultimately, we chose a Graco seat that will be everything from backwards toddler seat through backless booster until he no longer needs a seat.
 Last time in infant seat. (I do miss being able to take out the entire seat when he's asleep, but 31" just is too long for an infant seat!)

Gideon has learned where the box of baby foods are. When he's hungry, he grabs a pouch and brings it to us! (He does eat mostly whatever we eat. He will not eat normal spoonfed puree baby foods. But he doesn't prefer vegetables or even many fruits, but he loves the squeezy pouch baby foods, so we get those for his nutrition and our convenience. He usually eats one with his meal or for a snack.)

We went to the Columbia EdVenture (have been twice lately and hope to go once more before school starts so the older kids get a chance to enjoy it some more).

Daddy (DaDa) was his first real word, but outside was his second. He loves being outside! (And I love that we have a screened in porch. Sometimes, I just put him on that and leave the backdoor open while I do dishes. For the summer, the girls usually join him. They've taught him the seesaw and introduced him to the slide Alee got when she was his age. He figured that out in about 20 minutes!)

We went on a long car trip to Tennessee (near Nashville). Carolyn took it upon herself to take a picture of him every hour (or more often) on the way there:
 When we stopped for lunch, I lined up the kids on the curb away from the parking area of the gas station near a grassy are to eat bag lunches (and run around afterwards). When Rob came out of the bathroom and saw us all sitting there in a line eating lunch, he said we looked like a field trip.

We had fun visiting some of Rob's side of the family.

Seth is outgrowing the playground!

He makes a great step stool though...

The kids made food creations for lunch while we were there:
(I'm sorry - my phone turned some upside down.)

The girls wanted to play on the keyboard most of the time!)

We finished up our shopping for wedding color clothes. Seth found some pants the right color at Target but the ones in his size were tapered (rather than loose). I think they looked better on him anyways, but he's used to wearing loose.

"They're touching my legs too much. It feels like a snake. Like cotton snakes."
He decided they felt ok, and we bought the cotton snakes for the wedding.

 Everyone except Gideon has our outfits! (I ended up buying fabric for his outfit the Monday before the wedding and then sewed it on Thursday and Friday - yes, I finished it the morning of the wedding with Carolyn sewing buttons on! Pictures of that farther down!)

The last week of July/first week of August, Carolyn went to girls camp and Seth went on a trip with a friend. (Carolyn LOVES girls camp.)

 While they were gone, we did other things - park for Alee and Gideon while the twins were at a library teen activity....

(notice Gideon wanting a nap...he sat in the stroller or held by me most of the visit, which turned out to be a good thing!)

We spent a look of time in the Kapla block room.

Turns out Gideon got hand-foot-and-mouth disease (a virus that I didn't know was going around right now). He was a little feverish and drooly early in the week (but he's teething). When his chin rash (which comes up when he's teething and drools a lot) got really REALLY red and bumpy, I took him in to the doctor and found out what he had.
 The good news is, he has had a clingy week, so the places we went in public (before we knew he had a virus), he did not really get down and touch everything.

A few days after his birthday, he started taking steps. A few days later, he was walking across the room. And a month later, he's walking fast! (Still a little like Frankenstein, but much more stable - he carries things around, squats, pushes up to standing from anywhere, climbs...etc)

He loves music!

Thursday night before David's wedding was a late night for most of us - Rob had the kids and I was on reception decorating duty. It turned out nice.

Everything worked out and we enjoyed the wedding celebrations - we were on time, clothes ready, things ready, smiles ready!

Carolyn has been practicing art lettering.

Gideon was hungry (I was making calzones...which smell like pizza), and so he brought me the pizza trays. Coincidence or did he make that connection that it smells like we need to get the trays for supper to happen!?

Gideon loves toys. Alee sees him as a disturber of the peace.

He is also super jealous these days (of anyone that needs attention from Mom or Dad that isn't Gideon!) The feeling is mutual for Alee. He tries to push her off my lap and she wants him to go away sometimes so that she can have me all to herself.
When Alee and I tried to read a book one afternoon (which we've done most of the summer), Gideon walked into the kitchen and slipped in a puddle of water. He needed consoling, so the nearest sister picked him up and brought him to me (on the red recliner, with Alee). He had no attention span for our book and was wiggly and difficult. Alee exclaimed, "Why didn't you leave him in the puddle?! He's ruining our reading time!"

He holds a pencil (pen, crayon, anything writing) remarkably well for a child his age. I don't think any of my others held one quite this well and knew to make marks with it at 13 months old! (Guess there's something to be said about being the youngest of a family of mostly/almost teens!)

Other Gideon updates:
He grunts a lot, but he has some words he will say:
Jesus (pointing to picture over computer), "don't touch" (sounds like doh tuh),
go go go" (with riding car toy), "night night", "bye bye", "water" (sounds like wah-something), "tiger" (as in Daniel Tiger), and every once in a blue moon: "mama".
He's said a few others in copying us "shoes" "diaper" (di di) "ice cream" (more like ice si), etc.

He copies everything we say with some sounds similar and some intonation and length similar, but it still sounds like babble. Mostly, he talks in his own little babble of jibberish - so many sounds and "words" but we have no idea what he's saying most of the time!

He understands what we mean when we say bath, eat, outside, pacifier.

He loves the toilet, especially the flushing part - so bathroom doors stay shut most of the time!

He's slept through the night a couple more times now (on his mattress on the floor in our room).

His favorite show is Daniel Tiger's neighborhood.
His favorite books are The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Goodnight, Moon.

In getting ready for school, we used the last week to do some projects/organizing and have some last outings now that Gideon is better.

My favorite find in cleaning our old school files was this certificate from Seth's 2nd grade year - look closely!

This project hasn't gotten very far - but at least it's finally started! (I'm sanding, repainting - or staining, and then recovering. It will need some new fluff inside the seat.)

(I was too busy trying to keep Gideon from drowning (FEARLESS!), but we took one more lake trip on Wednesday after I uncovered this chair and painted a hutch.

We fit in one more zoo trip (including the water splash side) on Thursday

Gideon loved the fish best

 Why can't they all look in the same picture??

We had a 6th grade orientation at the middle school for the twins. They are a mixture of excitement and worry. They don't have a single class together - not even homeroom or PE that all 6th graders have at the same time. But they have lockers. :) I hope they had a good first day!

Then we had one more state museum trip on Rob's Friday off.

And one more pool visit on Saturday

Monday we had dentist appointments and time to relax before school starts on Wednesday

Tuesday we got all the things for school ready and had church activities at night.
Gideon practiced kicking a ball in the hallways.

Gideon has finally decided the crib is not so bad - he has started sleeping in it most nights - and quite a few nights, he's slept through the night in it. (Last night he still joined us before wake up time, so I know it's not "Poof!" and he's sleep-fixed! But it's nice to be able to put him it in asleep or awake and not have him scream for 20 minutes and then go get him out with a full diaper and red eyes.)

And today - we began school.
Alee at the elementary school, the 3 girls at the middle school, and Seth at the high school. This is the only year that the majority of my (5 school-aged) children will be at the middle school.
 They're each holding up fingers for what grade they are in.
Seth (10th), Natalie (6th), Alee (3rd), Kaitlyn (6th), Carolyn (8th).

 Some old, some new, some borrowed, some blue. :)
Seth and Carolyn have bookbags I used in high school), Natalie's is new but came from Rob who got it for free - I'll cover the symbol with a patch of her choosing, and Alee and Kaitlyn have new bookbags.

 Guess who's driving to and from school this year!?

 And this one is back to being alone during the day.

They all left him.... :(

Rob went to a grad school orientation this morning.
And Gideon and I have been putting bits of pieces of the house back together (including the hutch I repainted and needed hardware put back on). Actually, I have been putting pieces of the house back together. He has been taking pieces of the house apart! (Maybe some week I'll reorganize the lower kitchen cabinets so that he can't take so many things out!)

 He took one good nap in his crib - which flew by! And it's almost time to go pick up Alee. (The others will ride home with Seth.)