Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Toddlerhood

Brandon's first "official" day of work was yesterday. Which meant that Caleb was a terror. I don't know if he's still adjusting to the move, or if he's simply a toddler now. Yesterday we took turns yelling at each other and making each other cry. Not to mention all the million other things that went wrong simply because we were already having a horrible, rotten, no good day.

Today was better. Caleb got in two naps, which makes both of us a lot more pleasant to be around. Plus, we got to go visit Shannon in between those naps. And even though it was more a visit for me (since her oldest son was sleeping and Caleb had no one to play with), simply being out of our house and around other people seems to really lift Caleb's spirits.

Even still, with all those things working to our advantage, Caleb was either laughing or crying all day. There wasn't much content time. It's weird to me, because he hardly ever cried as a baby -- only when he absolutely had a reason to. And now he cries at the littlest things, although it's usually because we took something away from him that he thought should be his, but we disagreed. He did spend more time laughing than crying today, fortunately. He just thinks everything is funny now (except when I take things from him). Whether it's him running away from me, or me telling him no, our life is just a barrel of laughs. Hysterical laughing. Sometimes, he'll just look over at me and I'll start laughing, which makes him start laughing.

Caleb created his first art masterpiece today. I'm actually quite proud of him. I've tried a couple times to teach him to draw (or rather, scribble nonsense on a paper), but he's shown no interest. Mostly he just likes to take his markers out of the box and put them back in again. He's also a huge fan of pulling the lids off and on (although he needs help to get it off the first time). But today, out of nowhere, he suddenly grasped the concept of putting the marker on the paper and watching the colors appear. I didn't have to help him at all. And look what he ended up with!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Getting Settled

We've been busy this week trying to get settled into our new apartment. Besides the fact that milk is ridiculously expensive here, all is going well.

Caleb and I have made our first trip to the pool (although it was too cold to even attempt a brief swim, so we hung out in the spa for a little bit instead). We've also had our first visitors (Shannon brought her two adorable boys over for us to meet and play with -- it was so much fun). Sadly, neither of these first were captured on camera, so you'll have to wait for our second attempts to see all the fun we're having. Hopefully our seconds will be super soon!

Anyway, here's a little video of Caleb at the store. Isn't he just such a good helper?

video

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

We Survived!

After an extremely boring, sleep-inducing drive through Nevada, followed by a treacherous, heart-stopping drive through the mountains of California (in a blizzard at four in the morning), we've safely arrived at our new summer home!

Sadly, the sun wasn't shining much today. Hopefully, Utah's bad weather didn't follow us here.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Don't Forget Yertle!

About two months ago, I bought Caleb this stuffed animal at Kohls. It's Yertle the Turtle from the Dr. Seuss story. Since Caleb's our little turtle, I thought he needed it. I also bought him the book and gave it to him for his birthday, but the turtle I let him have right away.

We'd been wanting something to attach Caleb to, like a security blanket. Or in this case, a security Yertle. "They" say it's good for kids. Caleb didn't have anything he really loved like that, so after we got Yertle, we worked really hard at attaching the two of them.

It was a pretty easy task actually. Caleb LOVES Yertle. It still surprises me how much he loves him. In the mornings, when I go to get Caleb out of his crib, he'll start to climb up, then stop, grab Yertle and hand him to me first. Then, after I have Yertle, Caleb will stand up and hold his arms out...not to me, but to Yertle. As soon as I pick him up, he hugs Yertle so tight, leaving me to wonder what happened to the days that my baby used to hug me in the morning.

I think one of the reasons Caleb loves Yertle so much is that he's easy to grab onto (or strangle to death, if needs be).

He also makes a great bat, when you need one in each hand but only have one actual bat.

And he's great to wrestle with, since Caleb always wins.

Plus, Yertle is super tasty and so much fun to eat! (Note: Below, you will not find any pictures of Caleb eating Yertle's bald little head. That's because, Caleb's already eaten most of Yertle's hair. Caleb's friend, Naomi, also got a Yertle, and I'm always surprised to see how nice her Yertle's hair is.)





This is one toy that we better not forget to pack!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Daddy's Little Helper

We're busy trying to get ready for California. And by busy, I mean I have two whole bags packed now (and we're supposed to leave tomorrow). I really should be cleaning my house, but I wanted to post these cute pictures.

Brandon's been trying to fix our sprinklers and put them on an automatic timer so that we don't have to worry about watering our grass while we're gone. He started working on it Saturday, not sure what the problem was exactly -- the sprinklers flooded in one huge gusher instead of sprinkling across the entire lawn.

Of course, all that upturned dirt sounded like a fun place to play for Caleb. And I'm sure Brandon really needed the help.

Which such a great helper, the boys were able to get the sprinklers working on Saturday. But they still needed to set it up to sprinkle automatically.

Caleb was quite eager to help his daddy again today.






After a while, Caleb decided Daddy had it under control and took off after the neighbor's tricycle. I mean, she obviously wanted him to go for a ride, or she wouldn't have left it out front, right?

Don't be surprised if you see one of these under the Christmas tree soon. Caleb loved riding it (or rather, being pushed around on it).

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Bedtime

Tonight, as Brandon was saying our family prayer, Caleb leaned up three time to give him kisses.

Then, as I sang to him, rocking him in the chair, he lifted his head up off my chest to give me a kiss.

I love those baby kisses.

And have I mentioned yet that we taught him to sign "love"? It is by far the cutest thing in the world. Of course, he does it in his own special modified way, but it melts my heart every time.

I'm not sure if he was still awake or not, but he kept grinding his teeth tonight. Number three has broken through on the top. My mom first noticed it last Tuesday, but I wasn't able to feel it for several days after that. It's definitely coming in though.

What I Learned at Church Today...

For all those of you who have (or have had) a baby too young to go to nursery, you know that getting anything out of church can be a challenge. In fact, simply surviving all three hours is a little miracle in and of itself. So in honor of that, I'd like to share all the things I learned at church today.

1. My kid is cute. (During sacrament meeting, he waved his arm around copying the chorister.)

2. My kid is also handsome. (Caleb and Daddy had on matching blue ties today. So handsome.)

3. Sitting in a bench is so much better than the chairs way back in the overflow of the cultural hall. (We actually learned this a while back, but find it beyond our capability to show up early enough to get a bench -- not that we're late to church usually, there's just that many people in our ward who actually come, and they come before us.)

4. Having a baby who can walk to class is slower, but much easier, than carrying a twenty pound child to the same place. (When we entered the Sunday School class, Caleb stopped next to an old lady and gave her a smile. It absolutely made her day. It's amazing what something as simple as a smile can do for a person.)

5. Having a baby who can walk is a terror when you want them to sit still in class. (Brandon was teaching Sunday School, so Caleb felt no need to stay near me. It didn't help that there were a bunch of babies in the front row on the other side of the room that Caleb was dying to play with. But since all those people have babies of their own, I don't think Caleb distracted them too much from the lesson.)

6. Churches should have a father's lounge. (Brandon always takes Caleb to priesthood. But after being good for sacrament meeting, and struggling to behave for Sunday School, Caleb can't sit through another hour of church. Instead, the boys always end up in the hallway with Caleb's friends and their daddies, since none of them can be good at that point.)

7. Little babies are super cute. (There are several newborns in our ward currently. I just love those tiny feet and hands.)

8. Babies don't really need cute blankets. (But their mommies do! Relief Society is always freezing. Lucky for me, Liz keeps Naomi's blanket. Thanks for sharing with me!)

9. Diaper bags are girly. (I love coming out of class to find my husband with a nice girly bag strapped over his arm. Maybe I should have gotten him something manlier to take to church on Sunday. At least we don't have a baby girl and hence a nice pink bag for him to carry.)

10. True love doesn't last long when you're only one. (Naomi gave another boy a kiss at church today! My poor sweet Caleb. Maybe it's finally time to introduce him to chocolate. It's the best cure for a broken heart.)

I'm sure that the talks and lessons were also really good. And I can vaguely remember some of the things that were talked about. Something about charity. And how little things now determine where our life will end up later. Read your scriptures. Keep a journal -- it'll help your children later in life as they go through the same stuff you're going through now. The priesthood is the power of God on earth. We should treat our husbands as if they are the magnificent men they ought to be, and then maybe they will be that way.

Basically, all the stuff they teach every week.

Friday, April 18, 2008

With Tongue

A while back, I wrote about Caleb's great kissing skills. He's improved somewhat. He rarely sticks out his tongue when I ask for kisses. He still sometimes does it when he voluntarily gives me kisses though.

Tonight, Caleb had a date with Naomi. Both of them understand the word kiss and will respond accordingly. Which means that they'll give each other kisses. And since both of their moms get so excited and cheer for them when they kiss each other, they'll willingly do it again.

We thought the above picture turned out super cute. But the next kiss was even better. Because Caleb leaned in with his tongue sticking out, and Noami leaned in with her mouth wide open. What do you get when you put those two together? Caleb's first french kiss! (And Naomi's too.)

He's going to end up a total player. Can you see it now, all those teenage boys hanging out, talking about girls -- "When was your first kiss?" "When I was one." "No, like a real kiss." "Dude, when I was one. Tongue and everything."

Sigh.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Double Outing

Caleb and I ventured outside today. Normally, when we go out, we either go to the library (two and a half blocks north) or to the grocery store (a block or two northwest). Well, today we decided to be super adventurous and did both! I know, I know, we're totally crazy.

Caleb in his stroller. We only ever use this stroller when we go on walks. His other stroller is in the car, and well, the car was with Daddy. So he got to ride in the baby stroller again.

Cute Converse shoes that used to be Trevor's. I don't know if Trevor ever wore them because they're super clean. I don't know if Caleb will ever wear them again because they were a pain to get on. The whole time I'm trying, Caleb keeps grabbing one of his Vans and handing it to me, as if to say, "here Ma, try this one, it'll be easier."

I love watching him look around at everything. And occasionally he'll glance up to make sure his mommy is still around.

Some pretty flowers we saw on our way. I figured since I had a camera with me and was already taking pictures of things, might as well get a shot of these pretty flowers too. Caleb tried grabbing the bush while I was taking pictures. I was fine to let him play with them, except that while we're parked there, a car pulls up into the driveway. A tad embarrassed, we quickly continued on our path.

First stop: the library. Caleb loves the library. He thinks it is so much fun to pull books off the shelves. Pretty soon he'll be big enough that he actually wants to stop and read a few too. But for now, most the fun is pulling them down (he's the same way at home too).

On our way back home, after the grocery store, we passed by this Episcopalian church with this cute iron fence.

I took Caleb out of his stroller and put him on the other side of the fence. At first he was upset at me, but then he quickly realized that beating on a metal fence is just as much fun as beating on all the other stuff we normally beat on at home.

Such a sweet little boy. We sure had fun on our walk today!!

Provo Temple


We went to the Provo temple about two weeks ago (during those rare sun shiny days). It was so nice to be out and about and not just cramped up in our house. It might have been a little too bright since Caleb kept squinting in the sun whenever I tried to take his picture.

In front of the temple. (Even though you can't actually see the temple in this picture, I swear it's there, just to the right.)

I love this one of Brandon snuggling with Caleb.

Caleb loves his belly. He'll often pull up his shirt to show it off (just like little girls do with their dresses). He especially likes to pull up Mommy's shirt and try and tickle her belly (or at least poke the fat around some).

Caleb got these shoes for his birthday. We thought it was funny how closely they matched a pair that Brandon has. As if these two boys didn't look enough alike already!

Bye bye!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Wishing for Warmer Weather

The last two days have been absolutely freezing here. We finally had a couple nice days, and then out of nowhere, freezing cold. (Although, according to my mother, if I watched the news, I would have known it was coming. But then I wouldn't have had the fun experience of running around the Salt Lake valley yesterday wearing capris and flip flops while it was snowing on us.)

In hopes of enticing the warmer weather to return to us, here are some pictures from back in the good ol' days (which was almost two weeks ago now) when the sun didn't hate us as much.

Caleb got these bubbles for his birthday and absolutely loves them. And occasionally, on a nice windy day, he can make the bubbles appear all by himself.




Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Walking

At last, a video of Caleb walking. Probably not as cute as it would have been a week ago, but still cute.

video

Monday, April 14, 2008

Ironman Competition

While we were at Sears today, Caleb discovered this table with all the little wires and beads that you can push around. You know, the kind that are normally at doctors' offices.

Well, I guess he didn't quite understand that it was the beads you were supposed to push, because instead he decided to push the whole table. :)

video

Friday, April 11, 2008

One Year Old

We took Caleb to Kiddie Kandids today. I really love that place simply because they have a clicker button on their camera and can usually get some really good photos because of it.

Well, Caleb was kind of a stinker today. He decided he was going to be really shy and that he wasn't in the mood to have his picture taken. Still, the girl managed to get some pretty good ones.

My mom commandeered blogging rights to two of the photos, so hopefully she tells the story of how she cried during the buying part of the photo shoot. But here are his cute one year old photos:




Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Metro

Being one is so much fun. Or at least, having a one year old is beyond fun. Caleb seems to be learning so much each day. Sometimes I just can't believe how much he can say and understand now. When did my little baby stop being a baby?

Unfortunately, his learning spurt comes at a time when Daddy is increasingly more and more busy with work (we're leaving for Sacramento in two weeks). Which means, Caleb is getting a little too much mommy time and hence possibly turning into even more of a girly girl than he already is.

As part of his metro makeover, today at lunch Caleb decided to wash his hair. With peanut butter sandwich and banana. Yum. He did it again at dinner time. So, by the time bath time rolled around and Daddy was finally home again to witness it, it was beyond cute with actual shampoo.

Caleb and I went grocery shopping together today and I decided to rent a movie from redbox. For some reason the machine didn't register that I had swiped my card, but by that point, I'd already given the card to Caleb. So then he got to swipe it. Several times. Every time he swiped my debit card in the redbox machine, he would laugh and laugh and laugh.

After all the fun, I went over to the other redbox machine (there are two at our grocery store) and that one had the movie I had actually wanted, so I decided to get it too. Which meant Caleb got more laughs out of swiping the card repeatedly.

He was sorely disappointed by the time we rung up our groceries and the card went through on the first swipe. He's now a natural born spender.

In order to counteract the spending spree, we came home and put some change in his piggy bank. He loves to drop the coins in there. Too bad I rarely have cash on me and hence no new change to give to him.


(We thought the camera was broken, so I took this with my cell phone. After Brandon came home and we had the baby in bed, he was examining the camera and it looks like it might just be my lens which is broken. Good news for the camera, but sadness for the lens since it was my favorite lens.)

Monday, April 7, 2008

Baby Steps

You know that credit card commercial about personalizing your credit card with a picture and how you can even capture your baby's first steps and put it on your card? So all these years, I thought that a baby's first steps or first words were these huge momentous events. Now, I think it's all ridiculous. I have no idea what Caleb's first word was. Sure, he's said lots of things but does he realize that he can say them? I just don't know. But I'm sure he's definitely said his "first word" by now.

And while Caleb's "first step" might have been almost a month ago, he's only now really starting to walk. Today he took thirteen steps in a row! I doubt we'll be getting many more than that any time soon. Apparently, our living room is only about thirteen baby steps across. So until we find a bigger space to walk in (or start doing circles), thirteen might just be our max. But he really is starting to walk a ton now. It's still so exciting every time he does it.

He's also taken to pushing things across the room to aid him in his walking. He has a couple toys made for that purpose, but will push just about anything big enough to help him walk. Like his toy table. Or earlier, in the kitchen, he pushed the trashcan across the room. Good thing it was mostly empty or he would have had a real hard time with that.

Earlier today, Caleb actually reached up to take my hand so we could walk from the bathroom to the living room together. It's the first time he's done that. It's surprising the things that get me excited these days.

On a completely different note, I took these pictures after the re-cake incident and really liked the way it turned out. I'm thinking of getting it made into an 8x10 to put on our living room wall, but can't decide which I like better. The original is on the left and the right one just has the colored faded some to give it a more artsy feel, but I don't know. What do you think?



(Sorry they're small, I wanted them to fit side by side.)

Saturday, April 5, 2008

AAA

I wanted to post about the Awesome, Awesome, and Annoying things Caleb did today.

AWESOME: Communicating.

Caleb signed two new signs today: eat and thank you. It is so cute. I almost don't care if that kid learns to talk because watching him sign is simply the cutest thing in the world.

He also seems to understand a great deal more than I give him credit for normally. Today, I was shooting baskets in his hoop and the ball bounced back behind the couch. I asked him where the ball went and told him to "go find the ball for mommy." Well, he went crawling back behind the couch and found the ball, then rolled it over to me. I couldn't believe he had understood. But clearly, he knows what ball means.

AWESOME: Walking.

We've been trying really hard to carry Caleb less and make him walk more (holding onto our hands). The other day, we even put his shoes on and made him walk from the car to the building we were going to. All this practice has gotten him to start taking more steps. Usually only two or three at a time. But at least he's being more adventurous.

Today, he took seven or eight steps in a row, completely unprompted. We weren't trying to get him to walk to us at all. He was standing up, playing with his dump truck (which he loves) and decided to walk over to his daddy, seven or eight steps away. It was awesome.

ANNOYING: Wasting my day away.

Caleb has this thing about laptops. He loves them. LOVES them. If I'm on my laptop, he wants to play on the laptop too. He's the same way with books. If I'm reading a book, he wants to read my book. Or rather turn the pages (and one time ripped a page out completely -- bad news considering it was on loan from the library). And we try really hard not to watch TV when he's awake.

So what does that leave for me to do? Absolutely nothing. All I can do is sit on the floor and either play with him, or play with his toys without him (hence the shooting baskets story referenced above). Only then does he feel free to play with his toys too.

I'm going crazy. I feel like I'm just wasting my life away. Sure, it's good to spend time with my kid, but I seriously get nothing done. And it's not like I have many demands on my schedule, so there's nothing I really have to get done. What do stay at home moms normally do with their days? And don't say clean, because that's a completely pointless venture in our house until the baby goes to sleep. Plus, we really only clean the house if people are coming over. So what else is there to do?

Keep On Partying

The day after Caleb turned one, we had a family party up at my mom's house for him. Originally, when I scheduled the party, I did it around Caleb's nap schedule. But that week, his naps had been off for some reason (and are now back to normal), and he ended up not getting a nap at all before the party.

For the most part, he was still good, considering he's almost always good and is especially so when there are other people around.

My mom has a little playset in her backyard that all the kids had fun playing on. Well, all the kids except for Caleb. It was his first time on a swing or slide, and he wasn't really a fan of either. So instead, he watched the other kids play and thought that was plenty of fun.



The one thing he did think was fun was opening presents. He especially liked that we opened presents inside where it was nice and warm. He's a total expert at it now and needs very little encouragement. He got a little distracted by all the other kids who kept getting to play with the toys Caleb was opening.


By the time we got around to the pinata, Caleb was definitely grumpy. He cried the whole time. Maybe he just didn't like the idea of beating up a turtle, one of his kin. After that though, we put Caleb down for a nap and skipped the whole cake thing.