Sunday, July 31, 2011

Just the two of us

My bubba and I left the kiddos for three days, two nights to take a trip to Seattle to see my all-time favorite companion, Wheeler, take the plunge and enter into marital bliss.  Wanna know what?  I loved every minute of it and I missed my kids for maybe about an hour the whole time we were gone.  I knew they were in good hands and enjoying themselves.  Carsten was being showered with love from my friend Rachel and her husband Ted - the newly weds, and Elisabeth was having sleepovers at her bestie's home.

More than anything, Lance and I felt like we were 10 years younger, on our honeymoon together.  We slept in, went swimming at the pool at 11 pm at night, ate spectacular crab on Puget Sound, bought some Finnish goods and chatted with a Finnish woman in Finnish, went sightseeing, and just enjoyed each other's company without having to push a stroller through a crowded Pike's Market or be a slave to our kids' nap schedule.  In fact, we laughed all weekend at how easy it is to travel without children and wished we would have done more before EB and Little Man joined our family.

Don't get me wrong.  I love my children. Being a parent is the most rewarding thing I have ever done.  But I also love my husband.

Lesson learned:  Couples need to take time to remember why they fell in love.  Couples need time to strengthen their relationship and enjoy each other's company without their kids there.  A strong marriage makes a strong family.  As I am not one to hold back my opinions in life I will say this:  I think every couple should have at least a weekend away from their kids every year.  Not only is it good for the parents, it is good for the children on many levels.  My children have become quite adaptable in life (whether this is nature or nurture may be debatable. . .though I attribute it to nurture) and have learned that they are safe and loved by many family and friends.  

And parents always come back.  Hopefully more rested and in love than when they left.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Nine at Nine

Nine months is a wonderful age for this boy.  What I am saying?  Every month is a wonderful age for him.  Here were his stats at his last check-up:
9 month photo with his bear

Weight:  20 lbs, 3 oz (45th percentile)
Height: 28 1/2 inches (60th percentile)
Head Circ.:  17 3/4 inches (45th percentile)

He has really chunked up these last two months, providing a tasty little neck to smooch and chunky thighs to squeeze.  He only started wearing 6-9 month clothes a month ago and he is just about grown out of that size in 6 weeks.  Here is how else he has changed:

1.  Pass the peas please.  And the watermelon, the cereal, and whatever else that you have for me to eat.  He likes to especially steal french fries.  Sometime between 7 months and 9 months, Carsten has decided he LOVES to eat.  And eat.  And eat.
Watermelon season.  His favorite.

Don't mind if I do.  (Stealing french fries off of someone's plate while we were on vacation.)

2.  Movin' and Groovin'.  Carsten is a crawler, though he prefers to do the army crawl.  He hates to be held for extended periods of time unless he is sleepy and wants to snuggle.  He is close to pulling himself up.
Look at me!  I am crawling!  (And you obviously haven't childproofed yet, Mommy!)
3.  Throwing caution to the wind.  Electric cords?  Good teethers.  The beagle's tail?  A tasty snack.  The stairs?  A good place to crawl down.  Now that he is mobile, Carsten has a crazy sense of adventure.  Does anyone want to explain to me why, if my little boy has access to lots of toys and open floor space, is it that he always heads for the dangerous stuff?
Loves when his dad carries him around this way.
4.  Little voice.  Our little man has discovered he has a voice.  And he isn't afraid to use it.  Between his growls, raspberries, high pitched screams and the crooning he does in the car to the music we are listening too, we have affectionately started to call him "Lil' Pterodactyl."  He calls me "Mama" and has said "Papa" once or twice.

5. The charmer.  He still has a way with women.  He still openly flirts with any female that will look his way and he will often stare down any woman who isn't looking his way, in hopes she will give him a smile and the attention he deserves.
How can the ladies resist this?  I know I can't! 
6.  Self-entertaining.  I have been blessed with children who are good at self-entertaining.  Carsten has just discovered the joy of toys.  Mainly, he likes to empty toy boxes, throw balls and crawl after them and empty out our DVD shelves.  He can entertain himself for long periods of time and does so with a huge grin on his face and squeals of delight.

Emptying out the DVDs.  Again.  For about the 5th time that day.
7.  His sissy.  He loves his sissy and is happiest when he is in her presence.  He also loves to play with her things, much to her dismay.  However, despite how protective she can be about her toys, she takes the responsibility of "teaching" him how to play seriously and he eats up every bit of attention she will give him.
Playing together. 
8.  Water baby.  This boy LOVES to swim and about propels himself out of my lap and into the bathtub the moment I turn on the water.  Good thing we live in a climate that allows you to swim almost year round.
Bath time for baby.
9.  Practically perfect in every way.  He is still the happy-go-lucky, lovable, baby who will is ticklish beyond measure and lights up the room whenever he enters.  His patience is never-ending and his soul as tender as ever.

On a side note...I really need a better camera.  Any suggestions????