Sunday, July 26, 2009

Another busy weekend

We had a nice, fun weekend. Friday we kicked things off with a visit to the Parenting Center. The fun really began Saturday though. When we woke up, we had a quick breakfast and got dressed, then Mom took me out in the bike trailer again. We had a fantastic time! We dropped a book off at the library, picked some potatoes and a plum up from Miguel, then went to the playground for a while. We were happy to spend some quality time outside together. It was nice, and we can't wait until Hazel is big enough to ride in the bike trailer and run around on the playground with us too. Hopefully by then it won't be 102 degrees out anymore!

Sunday morning was also a ton of fun. We headed over to Clark's house. His dad got a new car - a 1973 VW Thing - that Mom and Dad wanted to ride. They also wanted to check out their new metal roof because we need to get a new roof too. Anyway, it worked out great for me because we had a really great breakfast and I got to hang out with Clark. I like showing him how to do new things like climbing onto strollers and pushing buttons on his parents' DVD player. Hazel had a good time too. She likes hanging out with Clark's dad. He likes her too - he made a cool Andy Warhol-esque picture of her that Mom is going to have made into a poster for her room. He said she is his muse.

We wrapped up our nice weekend with a dinner at Dad's favorite restaurant, Freebirds. I had a chicken quesadilla and refried beans. I was hungry. I ate most of the quesadilla and all of the beans, and I enjoyed looking at the decorations and making faces at the Freebirds employees (they made faces back at me and made me laugh). Dad has good taste - I love Freebirds too!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Party! Party!

The rest of our visit with Bubbe was as exciting as the beginning. When I woke up Friday morning, Mom said we were going to do something fun. Boy, was she right. We went to the Jewish Community Center where I go to camp, but instead of going to my classroom, we went to the big swimming pool. We have been there before but not in a while, and this time we met up with the folks from the Parenting Center and had Tot Shabbat outside. It was really a great time and Mom was very happy to finally have a chance to play with me in the pool. We agreed that it was nice Bubbe could hang with Hazel and we could have a little special time together, like the old days. Of course, it was nice coming home to everyone too.

When we came home, I went down for my nap. I was too excited to sleep, and since I am now two years old, decided to try something new - jumping out of my crib! It wasn't such a good idea though. I scared the heck out of Mom and Bubbe and bumped my head. It made a loud thud, but by the time Mom and Bubbe made it upstairs to rescue me, I was already back on my feet, standing in the middle of the room crying. It didn't take too long for the lump on my head to go away.

That night Mom put me to bed on my mattress on the floor because she knows it's only a matter of time before I do it again. It worked out great, but at nap time the next day, I didn't want to stay down on the mattress or in my big boy bed, so Dad put me back in my crib. They said they decided I am not ready to give up my crib yet, so today we bought a crib tent, which will keep me inside the crib, safe and sound.

An exciting evening followed our exciting afternoon. We had Hazel's baby-naming at our temple. It was rescheduled from a few months ago, when Hazel got sick. Mom and Dad were worried about how well we'd behave during the services, but we both did great. The Rabbi welcomed Mom, Dad, Hazel, myself, and Bubbe up to the front of the congregation, said a nice prayer, and announced the Hebrew name for Hazel that Mom and Dad picked out - Chasya Bina. It means protected and wise, which Mom and Dad hope are characteristics Hazel has one day. After the service, Dad and I ran around the social hall - I really love having the wide open space to run around. Our friends Ken, Lara, and Clark came to cheer us on as well.

We got to see Lara, Ken and Clark again, as well as our other friends we get together with sometimes for Shabbat - Josh, Karen and Benjamin - when they came to help celebrate my second birthday Saturday morning. We started out by playing in the pool. Not just my little pool, but a giant pool our nice neighbor Candace let us borrow. We also played in my sandbox and on our new playscape. It was great spending so much time outside. I also rode in my tree swing and spent a lot of time going up and down the stairs on the deck. It has a railing, so I was able to walk up and down the stairs without crawling by holding on to the railing. Mom and Dad thought it was pretty funny, but they didn't realize that I was actually practicing my stair-climbing. That night I surprised everyone by walking all the way up our inside stairs! I just held on to the wall for stability. I'm still a little bit shaky, but pretty fast. For now, I'm still crawling when going down the stairs, which everyone is happy about.

In the little bit of downtime we've had, I have been playing with all my great new birthday presents. I have a fun new cash register like the one I played with at Grandma and Grandpas, a cool travel tray and game from Aunt Lauren, fridge gears from Clark, Lara and Ken, a bubble blower and bulldozer from Benjamin, Josh and Karen, some pretend food and dishes from Aunt Susan, Uncle Stuart, Aunt Pat and Uncle Neal, and a new kitchen from Grandma and Grandpa. I also got lots of nice cards, checks and gift cards that will be fun to use.

Sadly, Bubbe had to leave today. It was so fun having her around, but she said Papa needs her around too. Hazel and I miss her already. I spent a while looking around for Bubbe this afternoon, but she is nowhere to be found. I heard we will get to go see here in September though; I can't wait.

One thing I forgot to mention earlier this week is Tuesday our friends Megan and her dad Russell took me, Mom and Hazel to the Austin Children's Museum. We had a fantastic time and wanted to thank them for taking us. We hope to hang out with them again soon.

Mom and Bubbe took some great videos of me and Hazel this week. There's one of me playing with pillows, dancing, driving my new car, and one of Mom and Hazel.

Here are lots of pictures from my party and Hazel's baby naming.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Hazel here

Hi! It's me, Hazel. I am almost 3 months old, and it's time for me to find my voice and write my own blog posts once in a while. Plus, Mitch is two and very busy now, so he doesn't always have time for this.

I wanted to let you know about a few new things I've been up to lately. This week Bubbe is visiting and we have been having lots of fun. Yesterday my big brother Mitch went to camp, so Bubbe, Mom and me had a ladies day! We started out by hitting my favorite clothes store, Gymboree, where I tried on (and bought) some cute hats. Grandma turned Mom and me on to Gymboree last month and now we're hooked. We found loads of hip new threads for me and Mitch for fall and winter. Next we hit Costco, where we got some yummy food and some pjs for Mitch and me. It was a super fun day.

I've been showing Bubbe all my new tricks: I'm really pushing myself around with my legs, talking a LOT, smiling up a storm and showing off my big dimples, grasping things, and sticking out my long, long tongue. Bubbe said I have a little lizard tongue!

Anyway, make sure you check out Mitch's birthday blog post to see pictures of our fun girls day out.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Happy Birthday to me!

This has been a huge week for me. Yesterday when I went down for my nap, I could feel excitement in the air. I was so wound up, I didn't go to sleep and after a little while, Mom came up to get me. We came downstairs to find Daddy home from work in the middle of the day, with a surprise guest - Bubbe!

Then this morning I awoke to quite a scene. Mom and Dad came into my room singing happy birthday. I didn't even know it was my birthday, but I was pretty excited that everyone was singing for me. But that was nothing compared to what came next. When I came downstairs, there was, sitting in the middle of the living room, a brand new car! Bubbe and Papa got it for my birthday. Thanks, Bubbe and Papa! When I saw the car, I just stopped at the bottom of the stairs and stared at it. Then I ran over to it, opened the door, got inside, turned the key, honked the horn, and rode around the room. I loved it! What a surprising morning.

The day just got better from there. This week has been a better time at camp because I got a new teacher, Miss Joanne. She is amazing! My first day with her was Tuesday and today Mom took me back to her. I got to splash in the little pool, and my teacher gave me a green scarf to put over my head so I can see the whole world as green. We have a huge paper mache tree in our room with a slide in it that I like, a cool spaceship made from a box, and today I rode in a box that we pretended was a car. The other thing I've been enjoying is a can filled with red circles (Mom called them poker chips, but she got in trouble for that - the teacher told her they are called red circles). I'm taking nice long naps there now too.

We've been having a great time, but I had a little accident at camp Tuesday. I was running full speed across a big room and I fell. I was going so fast, I skidded on my nose so I have a little carpet burn there now. Mom says my new boo makes me look like a boy who has lots of fun.

After camp today, Mom brought me home to see Bubbe and Hazel and I found my car again. I rode around in it all afternoon, and Peepa joined in the fun. She likes my car too. I also found I could put my duck, bear, and monkey in the car.

Dad came home early from work, and we all went to a groovy place called Threadgill's for dinner. The last time we were there was right before Hazel was born, when Aunt Lauren was here. It was delicious. I had some jalepeno corn bread muffins, chicken, corn, carrots, and sweet potato fries, but my favorite thing there by far was the fried okra. Mom and Dad were surprised by how much I liked it; we even had to order a second helping for me.

After we got home, I got a banana cake and opened a couple more presents. I didn't have a chance to open all of them though, because I wanted to play with the first few I opened - my very own computer, from Aunt Laurie, a copy of Best Nest I get to keep (before I had to read the one we got from the library), and my own mp3 player (now I don't have to get Mom and Dad to lift me up to turn on their CD players). Anyway, it's not nice of them to give me a nice present and then take it away, even if it is so they can give me another one!

You can see pictures from our fun day here.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

A need for speed

When I woke up this morning, Mom said she had a surprise waiting for me. She changed my diaper, then before I even got out of my pjs or had breakfast, put a bike helmet on me. I haven't worn it in a while so I didn't remember it and it didn't bother me like the last time I had it on. Next thing I knew, she took me outside and put me in my bike trailer, which was one of my birthday gifts last year. We didn't go far - just down to Miguel and back - but Mom could really feel it in her legs. I had so much fun, I smiled the whole time. My favorite part was going down a little hill. It is such a small hill it doesn't even look like an incline, but it made us go pretty fast.

Hopefully next time we ride, we can get out even earlier so we can stay out even longer before it gets too hot. Today we left as fast as we could and got out the door around 8:30, but even that is on the verge of being too late in this weather. Mom is super excited to be on her bike and to be able to take me out in the trailer again. I like it a lot more than last year - we haven't ridden since then because Mom couldn't do it while she was pregnant. We can't wait for Hazel to be big enough to come along too.

Speaking of Hazel, she has been going through some major changes. She is still cooing and smiling at us a lot, and she is starting to move around a little bit. She can really push herself around with her feet when she's lying on her back and we think she is trying to learn to roll over and sit up, although it will probably be a while before she can do either of those things. She is also really sucking on her hands. Maybe she is starting to teethe already! She is pretty fun and exciting.

After we returned from our cycling adventure, we got dressed and ate breakfast, then went back to pick up our food from Miguel, who had lots of colorful, gorgeous veggies and fruits. Our next stop was this week's birthday party, for Noble, who turned one. It was great. I rode in a swing that looks like a car, learned to climb up and down a ladder into a clubhouse, pushed a lawnmower and a truck, and looked longingly at a swimming pool (Mom and Dad forgot my swimsuit). It was a great time. I especially loved the swing.

We had lunch and rested, then headed downtown to continue our search from last weekend for the frozen banana stand. Finally we were successful! It was more than worth the effort. I had a banana with vanilla dip and coconut; Dad had peanut butter and Oreos; and Mom had chocolate with toffee. It was excruciatingly hot outside, they had a long line, and Dad told us all the ways he would "improve their execution," but it was divine anyway.

What a non-stop fun day. And, hard as it is to believe, Mom and Dad say more good times await us tomorrow!

For pictures from Benjamin's party last weekend, some random shots of us this week, and the fun we had today, click here.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Happy Fourth!

Today we celebrated our freedom by spending the 4th of July outside. I started my day with a nice breakfast out at my new picnic table, which is one of the birthday/Hanukkah presents Grandma and Grandpa got me and Hazel. It was fun. Mom thought I'd just jump up and run around but I surprised her by sitting still and eating my breakfast the whole time. She thinks I must have learned this at school. I was happy to see Mom learned her lesson and didn't try sitting on my table this time.

Next, we all decorated our wagon and our necks and headed down to the park for the Milwood neighborhood parade and Fourth of July party. It was a really great time. We wanted to be in the parade but since it's so hot and Hazel is so little, we skipped that part and just went straight to the park where the parade ended and the party began. When the parade showed up, it was led by a firetruck, kids on bikes, a tractor, a pony, a juggler on a unicycle, families with wagons, and parents on bikes pulling kids in bike trailers. Lots of people were dressed up in patriotic costumes and we saw many (hot) dogs. At the park, we were entertained by the 40 piece Austin Civic Wind Ensemble and did some great people watching. I really enjoyed the music - I clapped and snapped along and especially liked the big drums. Dad found cheeseburgers for us all! I ate lunch in my wagon and cooled off by dumping water on myself, which Mom said was a very smart thing to do. I also liked looking at all of the other kids running around.

Hazel had a fun time too. She came out of her stroller at the park and sat on Mom and Dad's laps watching all of the craziness. She is definitely getting more alert and was clearly paying attention to all of the activity. Mom and Dad picked up snow-cones on our way out, but they didn't share any with me.

For pictures of our Fourth of July fun, click here.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Camp and the Cones

This was my first week back at camp, and it was filled with excitement. Tuesday was my first day. When we got there, we found out that I am now in the Cardinal room. There was a flag with a pretty red bird hanging outside my classroom door. That morning there was a thunderstorm outside, so we played in a big room called the block room. I was sad and cried when Mom dropped me off, but my teacher gave Mom a report when she picked me up at the end of the day that said I was happy in the morning, had a good day, ate some of my lunch, and enjoyed listening to music, playing in the home center, and looking at the rain out the window.

I had a little trouble going down for a nap, the teacher told Mom. She said it took me about 20 minutes to fall asleep but then I slept for 2 hours, until they woke me up to go home, unlike most of the other kids. Mom said my teacher doesn't know what a hard time falling asleep is - 20 minutes is nothing. Anyway, sleeping on my nap map for my naps and when I go to bed at night the past few weeks has really helped. Also, I brought my duck and monkey to sleep with at camp, so that also made it a lot easier to sleep in such a strange place.

When Mom picked me up, I wrapped my arms and legs around her leg like a monkey on a tree. We went to the Parenting Center afterward and I didn't leave her side. Wednesday morning we went to a playdate at my friend Ellie's house, and again, I stuck pretty close to Mom. Mom thinks I was worried she was going to leave me since she left me at camp Tuesday.

Today was an even better day at camp. It is sunny and HOT out, so we started the day outside in some little pools like I have at home. Daddy dropped me off because he has a couple days off work for the holiday and I didn't cry or anything. The teacher's note today said I felt happy, had a GREAT day and ate some of my lunch. I enjoyed going down the slide, playing in cars, cooking in the home center and dancing in the block room. I had a much easier time going down for my nap and slept for 2 hours. She said I'm a sleeper! They also pointed out that all the boys in my class have curly hair. I am the youngest in my class (again).

At the end of the day, Mom, Dad and Hazel all picked me up. When they got there I was still asleep so Mom woke me up. To celebrate my first week of camp, we headed downtown to eat frozen bananas at a new place called Bananarchy. Unfortunately, they moved (I guess that's bound to happen when you want to eat at a place that has wheels) and we didn't know where their new location is, so we went to a place called the Mighty Cone instead. Hazel slept through it all and Mom and Dad had a brownie, a chicken cone, and a milkshake, which they shared with me. Yum! Unfortunately, the Mighty Cone won't have t-shirts for 10 more days. One of our goals for the 4th of July weekend is to find the frozen banana stand, so stay posted to find out whether we succeed.

Click here for pictures of our trailer cuisine tour of Austin -- so far.