Friday, November 30, 2012


This video totally made my day - can you imagine how amazing it would be to hear your mama's voice for the first time?

Thursday, November 29, 2012


If I had to choose one moment that was my favorite from our Thanksgiving weekend, it would be this one:

Cole had been SO EXCITED to meet Baby Rowen.  Several times a day, he'd ask me about her - "SEE BABY WO-WEN?  COLE SEE BABY?"  Leading up to Thanksgiving, I'd talk to him about her - how babies cry a lot because they can't talk; how Rowen will be very small and we'll have to be very quiet and gentle; how babies don't eat food like big boys, but drink milk from a breast or bottle.  All this information just made Cole even more excited.  "KISS BABY WO-WEN! HUG BABY WO-WEN! COLE HOLD BABY WO-WEN PEESE! ROCK BABY WO-WEN, BACK FORTH BACK FORTH!"

The night before we left, Cole was so excited he started baby proofing our house - even though we were going up to Rowen's house - it didn't matter, he put all our chalk and crayons and small toys up on the counter.  "BABY WO-WEN CHOKE! NO EAT CHALK!"

Cole kept his distance and observed for a couple days in his quiet way, just soaking her all in - but on our third day there, he requested to hold Rowen:

And oh - was I PROUD mama!  Our sweet, gentle boy held her so carefully, caressed her soft head gently, was so still and quiet while he examined every inch of his cousin's little face.  He pointed out her eyes, lips, nose, and cheek; he held out his small finger so she could grasp it with her strong grip.  And when he was done, he declared, "ALL DONE!" so we could take Rowen away before he got up. 

I was so proud of my darling boy...but there was some sadness, too - in that I can picture just how sweet Cole would have been with his little sibling, who would have been due in a couple months.  I take comfort in knowing that he'll still be a great big brother, even if it's not for another year!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012


We had the loveliest Thanksgiving this year!  Since my sister just had her sweet little baby a month ago, in the spirit of providing the most relaxing atmosphere possible, we all crashed up at their house! :)  I was a teensy bit nervous about the drive up - our first long drive since Cole has been potty trained - but he made it the 5+ hours without an accident (or even peeing when WE stopped to stubborn boy FLAT OUT REFUSES to pee in a public toilet).

Cole was thrilled to help in the kitchen as much as possible - my little sous chef!

Showing off his turkey shirt:

Baby Rowen worked harder than anyone...being a newborn is hard work, you know!
We all finished the day stuffed full of good food and good wine - the best way to be!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Random Adorableness

Some adorable things Cole's been up to lately:

1.  He recently learned how to say and sign "I love you"!  SO adorable:

2.  He continues to be obsessed with plaid.  At least five times a day he will request to wear his "PLAID SHOES MAMA! PLAID SHOES PEESE!", which are very unfortunately too small. 

3. He likes all his food cold.  ALL of it.  He requests an ice cube in his oatmeal in the morning so it will be cold (bleh!).  One of his favorites?  Cold spaghetti with meatballs. ::shiver:: so disgusting!

4. He is incredibly observant of his surroundings.  While we're driving, he'll point out the Children's Museum (which we never, EVER drive by and haven't been to since beginning of August!) and other rarely visited places...and, um, some more frequently visited places like Dutch Bros ("MAMA COFFEE! MAMA COFFEE!")

5. He adores his daddy more than anything.  And to be honest, I can't blame him - they seriously have SO MUCH fun together!  He still requests every day to "HANG DADDY! PLAY WIF DADDY!"

Monday, November 26, 2012

Christmas Planning

Oh. my. gosh. 

Can you BELIEVE it's less than a month until Christmas?!!

It snuck up on me this year!

Not that I'm complaining - I adore Christmas more than any other holiday.

So, in the spirit of planning ahead, here are some of the things Santa is planning on bringing Cole this year:

Stocking stuffers:

1. Train
Cole has a train set and he loves it - but these adorable little wooden trains have a tendency to get lost, so I plan to get him a couple more.
2. Train Whistle
Um, I may live to regret this...but I'm thinking about getting Cole this wooden train whistle.  I'm sure he'll only want to use it when I'm on important phone calls and all, but why little boy wouldn't love an obnoxious noisemaker?

3. animals from Michael's
You know those cute little animals that Michael's Crafts stores carry?  I couldn't find a picture, but Cole adores small animal figures and I think a couple of his favorites will be a hit.

4. Undies

Oh yes, I said it.  I bought Cole undies for Christmas!  Cute undies with airplanes, trains, and his beloved animals - he seriously gets excited about picking out his undies in the morning, so why wouldn't he love to get some in his stocking?

5. Matchbox cars
Just one or two - I don't want him to have a million because it totally takes away from the specialness of having them.  Chris and I will pick out a couple of cute ones to stick in his stocking.

"Real" presents:
1. Card Table fort
I just finished Cole's card table fort - it's part camping (like the one shown above) and part train.  I think he'll love it - but it's a toss up of who will play in it more, him or his dad :).

2. Balance Bike
Cole already has the most wonderful tricycle (his gift from last year from Grammy and Papa), but after a year he still doesn't quite have the hang of it - he lacks the strength to pedal.  I've heard rave reviews of these balance bikes and I think Cole will love his!

3. Christmas Eve jammies
As per our family tradition, Cole will have new Christmas pajamas to open on Christmas Eve :)

4. Broom

If I could get Cole a mini vacuum that really works so he could help out with the vacuuming, I totally would.  Since the only model of these is like $250 (I don't think it's worth THAT), I'll settle for a child sized broom, since Cole LOVES to sweep (where he got this from, I have no idea, because I RARELY sweep!)

What's on your must-have list for your little ones this year?

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Parenting FAILS

I like to think that I'm a pretty good parent.  I'm consistent with my expectations, I use natural consequences instead of punishment, I've never spanked Cole or even used a time out.

Um, but I am FAR from a perfect parent.  Here's a list of some of my biggest parenting fails:

1.  The bink.  Oh, the bink, the bink.  Yes, Cole STILL uses his bink - and LOVES it.  Seriously, he isn't really attached to a blanky or lovey...but the bink is another story.  I know, I know, we need to get rid of it - but it makes his SO happy and brings him SO much comfort... and days we don't have a good nights' sleep are hard for everyone! I'm totally dreading the day we will get rid of it and I know that day is fast approaching.

2.  Interrupting.  I have GOT to nip this in the bud.  There is nothing more rude than having a child interrupt an drives me CRAZY!  Unfortunately, I've sort of let this slide because we were just so excited when Cole FINALLY started to talk and we wanted to encourage him as much as possible!  But now that he's talking much more, I have to make sure he knows to wait his turn to talk.

3.  Letting Cole dress himself.  Truly, I like to think I'm really awesome at being patient and helping Cole be as independent as possible...except with dressing and undressing himself.  Usually, I'm just in too much of a hurry to let him take the (LOOONNNGGGG) time to figure out which body parts go in which holes for his clothing.  One of these days I will take an entire afternoon so we can practice together putting his clothes on and off...but until then, I help him out.

Yup.  Still have some things to work on to be a better parent.  What are some of your biggest parenting fails?

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Water Baby

Cole is 100% a water baby.  One of his absolute favorite things to do is to play in the kitchen sink - he'll turn the water on and fill various sizes of cups and containers and be happy for an hour.

And it doesn't matter if it's freezing outside - he still manages to go right to any source of water and have a blast:

Friday, November 16, 2012

Feelin' the Love

Cole loves to dole out kisses and hugs.  Truly, he gives me a serious-faced kiss and a tight squeeze of a hug at least fifty times a day.

It's so awesome and so sweet, and I always get this warm fuzzy feeling when he does it. "Aw, he must love me so much to give me kisses and hugs!  I must be a really awesome mama if he loves me so much." "I feel so loved and special when he lays a smooch on me."

But then I started noticing that he sorta doles out those kisses and hugs to EVERYONE...and more importantly, EVERYTHING.

The dogs?  Oh yeah.  Many times a day poor Chloe is subjected to hugs and kisses...Nala usually runs away fast enough that she doesn't get it as frequently, but she's not left out either.

Inanimate objects?  You betcha.  Stuffed animals (very sweet); cars and trains (cute); his stroller (??).

Strange objects?  Um, yes.  Every day when we walk into the house, Cole gives our house a hug and kiss.  No joke.  Also: "Cole, let's blow a kiss to the bottom of our shoes instead of using our lips to kiss.  We step on all sorts of yucky things that we don't want to kiss." -(BOTTOM OF THE SHOES!!!) 

And the weirdest one yet?  The toilet.  Yup, you read that right. The toilet, which happens to be at just the right height and size for Cole to wrap his cute little arms around and give it a squeeze...and then plants a smooch right on the (closed, thank goodness!) lid. child loves me as much as the toilet.  Feel the love, people.  Feel the love.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Fall Leaves

As a teacher, it was always super comforting to me to know that, in some essential way, all kids were the same.  All kids love recess.  All kids love those rare movie days.  All kids love to press buttons.  You know, silly things like that. 

And yup...all kids LOVE to play in the leaves.  Cole is no exception:

And you know what I love?  That these leaves were in a I don't have to rake them! :)
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