Sunday, October 25, 2009

Dad's home!

Dad was gone part of this week, so we tried to stay busy.

Monday we went to open gym at Gymboree. It's time they set aside when people who take their classes can come and just play on all the equipment. I loved it! When we signed up for my Gymboree class, they gave us two free art classes, so Tuesday we went to one of those. I didn't like it as much as my regular class, which is more physical, so I kept trying to run out of the art room to climb on the stuff in the area we're usually in. Now we know I signed up for the right class! Thursday we went to that class again and I had a great time.

Wednesday we went to the Austin Children's Museum. We hadn't gone in a while because last time we were there I wanted to press the elevator buttons the whole time, which was frustrating for Mom. This time though, I really engaged with everything they had there. I found a cool toy barn with little animals, a train exhibit I really enjoyed, an exhibit where I put balls in little holes and then when I turned a crank it played music, a toy kitchen, a place where I put milk bottles in a crate and sent them down a line, a fish that I put balls in, and a setup where I put different shaped nuts and bolts in holes that were those same shapes. It was great and we were sad to have to go home for lunch and a nap at the end.

Friday Dad took me to the Parenting Center at the J. It was nice to spend some time with him after he got back from his trip.

Friday night our friend Zhenya came over. Instead of hanging around with her, Mom and Dad left - they went to our friend Prabhakar's wedding. Hazel and I stayed behind to keep Zhenya company. I had a great time reading my books and eating a nice dinner while Zhenya tried to manage Hazel, who is teething and has been extra screamy the past few days. When Mom and Dad came home from their very fun night out, Zhenya and Hazel were worn out. They were both asleep on the bed in Hazel's room! We are all very glad Zhenya was able to come hang out with us.

We also went to the playground at the school up the street a lot in the afternoons this week. The weather is amazing here right now, so we are trying to take advantage of it. I am starting to enjoy slides more and have been testing out my balancing skills by walking on a concrete retaining wall an inch or two off the ground.

Yesterday we went to a fundraiser called "Mac and Cheese Smackdown" at Central Market. The best part was we ran into my friend Benjamin and his mom and dad. His dad saved the day by sharing some of their hard-to-come-by macaroni with us. It was nice seeing them.

Mom and I had a chance to go out with my bike trailer today. We went down a couple of hills and had a great time.

Hazel is getting really fast at walking around in her toy and is still enjoying rice cereal. She grunts and gets really mad if Mom isn't quick enough with the next bite. Because of her sore gums, she is having a hard time sleeping so both she and Mom are tired! We all hope Hazel feels back to normal soon.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Growing up so fast

Hazel and I are both growing up so fast, Mom and Dad say.

Today Hazel went to the doctor for her six-month well visit. Dr. Jones was very impressed with Hazel's strength. She thinks Hazel will be able to crawl around by the time she goes back for her nine-month visit!

They also measured Hazel at the doctor's office. She is doing a great job growing. She is now 25.5 inches (50th percentile) tall, weighs 14 lbs., 4 ounces (20th percentile), and her head is 40.6 cm (7th percentile) around. She will probably keep up the good work - she is continuing to enjoy eating solid food. To see Hazel's growth chart, click here or on the right side of the blog.

I have also had a couple of big moments the past few days. Yesterday Mom invented a new game that we call "Ready, Set, Go!" The way it works is I get in my car, then Mom or Dad says, "Ready! Set!" while I pick my feet up off the floor. Then when I am ready, I say, "Go!" and whoever is pushing me zooms me around the room, fishtailing around corners. I think it is very exciting to go so fast, and Mom and Dad are very excited that I am saying my first word (aside from Mama and Dada, of course)!!!

Today I lost my duck that I sleep with. After I showed Mom the sign for it, she helped me look for it, and called out to duck over and over. After I while I helped call duck once too! After that, we found it. It's fun being able to talk, and in the meantime I am really excited to be able to communicate with signs. I learned "milk," "grapes," and "bread" this week. It's fun being able to tell people what I want, especially when I am thirsty, want something different to eat, or am looking for my duck.

I am learning to like peanut butter more. Today Dad surprised us by coming home for lunch, and he shared his peanut butter and jelly sandwich with me. It is really growing on me. I liked the sandwich a lot and kept asking him for more. It was fun, and I hope Dad comes home for lunch more often so he can share his yummy treats with me.

I also shared a big milestone with Dad tonight. Before my bath, I sat on my frog potty, which I do almost every day, but this time I went to the bathroom in it!!! No one is going to rush me with potty training, but it is very exciting to start getting my head around going potty someplace other than my diapers and the bathtub.

In less exciting, but still fun, news, yesterday turned out to be a beautiful day. After a fun morning at Gymboree, I didn't want to take a nap, so we went to the park near our house. I am really starting to like going down slides, so I did that a lot. Plus, we found an abandoned basketball on the playground, so we played with it while we were there and I figured out a new fun game. I carry the basketball up the playscape stairs (which is tougher than it sounds) and then shoot it down the slide before I go. It is loads of fun. While we were there, a cold front was blowing in, so it was cool and so windy it made us spin around in circles. I had a good time chasing Mommy and she had a great time chasing me (I am faster than she is). Also, I found a concrete wall that I like to walk on like a balance beam. What a great time.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Hazel is eating!

Tonight at dinner something very strange happened. It all started out normally enough. Mom made me a delicious grilled cheese sandwich, a pear, and some milk. I was happily eating, when suddenly, Hazel sat down at the table with us. And then (you won't believe it, but it's true), she started eating real food! Well, I'm not sure I'd call it food, but it was milk and rice cereal and she ate it from a spoon. Mom and Dad said I ate that stuff when I was her age, but I'm not sure I believe them. In any case, I have to admit that Hazel did a pretty good job eating for the first time. You can watch the video by clicking the image above, clicking on the Hazel's First Food link under videos, or just click here. If you want to compare, here's my first time eating.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Lots going on

We have had a lot going on here lately. Last week we met up with my friend Megan and her mom at a place called Jungle Java. We'd been there once before, a while ago, but I wasn't super interested in it the first time. This time though, Mom made me climb up in the big structure and I really played. It was fun and I hope to go back again soon.

Also last week, we had an exciting visitor. A police officer came to our house. No, he wasn't there to arrest me! There have been a lot of house break-ins in our neighborhood lately so we had the police come and do a free survey of our house to help make it harder to break into. The exciting part was at the end, Mom took me outside to show me his cool car. He was really nice. He showed us his computer and turned the lights on for me. Mom said that better be the last time I ride in a police car.

The very next day, more people showed up. I was taking a nap when all this banging started over my head. I woke up very confused, so Mom took me to the window to check out all the racket. There were tons of people outside with lots of trucks and ladders, and were VERY noisy. A few months ago we had a crazy hail storm and it damaged our roof, so the men came to give us a new one. I had a really good time watching all the activity out our window.

Today we continued our quest for excitement by going to a place called Gymboree Play & Music. Since I'm not in school, Dad and Mom decided I need to get out and do something, so this morning we set out to find a fun class. Hazel did a good job riding in her baby carrier (a ride I have also been enjoying lately) and I did GREAT and really enjoyed it.

I paid attention more than Mom expected and I liked climbing and playing on and with all the stuff. I really liked a red see-through scarf the teacher gave me - I kept running around with it over my head. It made everything look red!

I also ran and jumped around a lot and walked across a little balance beam they have, which is about an inch or two off the ground. All the kids in the class were boys, which was a new experience for us (everywhere we go, I am in the minority because most of the other kids are girls), and there was a dad there. It was good, so we signed up. I was so worn out when we got home, I ate a huge lunch and then practically climbed in his crib myself for my nap! I am excited to go back again Thursday!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Long weekends with Dad

Dad has to use up his vacation by the end of the year, so he has been spending some extra time with us on some Fridays. This was our second long weekend in a row, and he has next Friday off too. It has made life easier for Mom and lots of fun for all of us.

This weekend we checked out a gymnastics and dance class we thought I might take, but it was too serious for me. The other kids in the class were a little older than me and liked quietly sitting still more than I do.

The trip to the Northwest Rec Center worked out anyway though. On our way out to the car after bailing on the gymnastics/dance class, we noticed kids around my age hitting balls with hockey sticks. Mom, who played field hockey (very poorly but enthusiastically) for four years in high school, was really excited so we stopped to watch and find out more about the class. It's called Sportball, and they do all kinds of things with different kinds of balls. It involves a lot of running around, so it's more my speed. We will probably sign up for the next session.

After we left the Rec Center, we stopped at a playground behind an elementary school. We met another kid my age, and although there were two nice playscapes, I had a lot of fun running up and down the school stairs and wheelchair ramps. It was a nice morning and a good chance to blow off some steam.

Hazel has been having a lot of fun too. She has been hanging out in my old Jumperoo and we picked up an activity station for her. She likes pushing buttons that play music and chewing on a bird on the toy. I tried helping her push the musical buttons and she grabbed on to me and pushed me away! She's not very good at sharing, but she's still little so it's okay. I play with it while she's napping because I really like it too.

We've had a nice change of pace lately with the weather. We've had a few cool days and even some rain! It's been a good opportunity to wear my nice new jacket. Mom and Dad said I look like a cool dude.

Since I am still not talking, Mom and Dad started teaching me sign language the last few weeks. I started with "more" and "all done," which have helped me to stop throwing food on the floor. Before I knew how to tell Mom and Dad I was done eating with my signs, the only way I could tell them I was finished was to throw my food, so everyone is happier and less frustrated this way. This past week, I have also learned to sign "apple," "banana," "help," and "book." Hopefully this will encourage me to talk soon. So far, so good. In the meantime, I have been saying "ooo, ooo, ah, ah," to tell them when I'm thinking about monkeys.

Here are a few pictures of Hazel playing in her new toys, me in my rain jacket, and some pictures from Rosh Hashanah.