Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Yo ho! A pirate's life for Ben

The other night, Ben had a fun Skype date with Aunt Amanda and his cousins in which he showed them his latest book-of-choice, Peter Pan. After some pirate songs and ideas about how we could create our own pirate adventure, Amanda, aka SuperMom, diverted a goodnight meltdown by suggesting Ben put the book under his pillow and dream about the two of them flying like Peter and Tink.

Big eyes. Nodding head. Off to bed he went...SuperMom.

And by 7:30 the next morning, I was wrapping a cereal-box sword in duct tape and Ben was collecting items for his treasure chest. I was concerned there was not enough coffee in my system yet to make the morning exciting enough for my first matey, but we actually had a really good time putting everything together, drawing a map and taking turns hiding/seeking the chest. Although Ben's clues left little for the imagination..."Mom! I put it on my chair!"

Pirate Ben with his sword, map and treasure chest
(paper coins, Mardi Gras beads, and a Happy Meal watch)

Some of his best pirate poses of the day:
Shiver me timbers!
Katie Beth even got in on the action, finding a pirate named Larry to shake her booty with.
But then things started to get out of hand.
Scurvy scoundrel!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Latest Ben-isms

During our hike Tyler took a bunch of pictures of Ben sitting in a tree. They turned out pretty cool, but my favorites were of just his face while we were teasing him by asking if he was Batman.
You can tell he was flattered!

I know I just did a whole post about Ben, but in the last few weeks he's been extra funny (and extra exasperating, but this is my scrapbook, and I'm focusing on the positive). Here are a few moments I can remember. Don't forget to drop your "l" and turn "t", "k", and "g" to "d" and...oh just call us and we'll have Ben re-enact it!

Randomly in car...
B: I called Miss Dawn a stinky butt.
Me: What? Who is Miss Dawn?
B: She's really tall (reaches hands high) and has a big bottom (stretches hands wide) I call her a stinky butt (giggles).
Me: (commence lecture about name calling while trying to keep a straight face)

Ben's Toy Story 3 remake cast...
Ben: Buzz Lightyear
Katie Beth: Jessie
Zoe: Woody
Me: Barbie (what? I just made a small suggestion)
Tyler: Ken!
Grandma: Slinky
Grandpa: the piggy (sorry Dad)
At that point, he ran out of characters and started to assign barn animals to the rest of the family members.

Choosing which story to read from his toddler Bible:
B: I no want to read that story (Adam and Eve)
Me: Why not?
B: Because people don't live in gardens.
(flipping pages)
B: I want to read about brave queen Esther. (looking at picture) She's so sad.
Me: Why do you think she's sad?
B: She wants her mommy. (pause) She lost all of her toys.
(I give him his other Bible)
B: No, I don't want to read that Bible. Jesus' beard is short.
Me: So you like the other Bible because Jesus has a longer beard?
B: Yes.

After complaining that my shoes were hurting my feet one day after church, Ben made a major protest the next time I put them on. "Noooo! Those hurt your feet!"

He's very observant of our clothes (and complimentary):
"Oh Grandma, you look so nice."
"Oh Mommy, your shoes match your shirt!"
"I'm wearing jeams just like Daddy!" (the "m" is not a typo)
"Oh Mommy, I like your Christmas shirt" (it was a brick red and ivory striped top)

When I called Tyler "honey" this morning:
B: Honey? (scrunching up his nose) Did you call Daddy honey?
Me: (embarrassed) Yes, I call him that sometimes.
B: (laughing) Honey is for bees!

More to come as that imagination just continues to grow. Speaking of that, I should go see what all those loud thuds and constant babbling are about while he's supposed to be napping...

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Let the sun shine in!

In celebration of the phenomenal sneak peek of spring we are enjoying this week, let's play catch up on that other great break from the winter doldrums we had a few weeks ago!

At our friends' for lunch, Katie Beth loved her first swing ride.
Ben felt the same about his first trampoline jump!
catching some air
Looks like he's holding on for dear life...
but, as you can see, he's only about four inches from the ground. Go Ben, go!

On Sunday, we headed to Cloudland Canyon, GA. Tyler and I (and Zoe) hiked there several times while were dating, but hadn't been back in years....
carrying a little extra cargo these days!
My whole world, under a ginormous boulder.
If that doesn't say "Kodak moment"....

Ben was loving being on Zoe duty

Top of the mountain to ya!

Just a walkin' and a chattin'...when did he get as tall as my belly button?!

And the fun didn't stop there folks! We weren't going to let a little thing like naptime steal any of the sunlight, so after a couple of carnaps, we arrived at the park...with the rest of Chattanooga.

Did you know that you get your picture in the paper when you quit sucking your thumb?!
As far as Ben knows, that headline concludes with "that he earned after he stopped sucking his thumb!" (wordy, but thorough)

I guess it's worth mentioning that the photographer was really there to commemorate the beautiful's been a rough winter for us southerners! But we couldn't be prouder of our little big man and thought he deserved a new set of wheels.

complete with Spiderman pads and gloves
(helmet was at home, yikes.)

But truthfully, I'm not sure who enjoyed picking out a bike and learning to ride the most...
Feel like I should post a poem about fathers and sons here.
So sweet.

While the boys were being followed by the paparazzi, I was hanging with this hot mess:
Missing a sock, wrecking the carseat, plugged with a paci...this girl was ready to get out and explore!

So we did.
Big brother was happy to take over swing duty during a bike break.

Now that was a great weekend.

More please?

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Hams for dinner!

We've got 'em every night at our house!

Sometimes they are salty hams, but on this night, they were just a little spicy.

Ben 3-year stats:
3 ft, 2 in tall (60 percentile)
33 lbs (50th percentile)

Katie Beth 9-month stats:
27 in tall (50th percentile)
16 lbs, 8 oz (10th percentile)

Doctor said it's time to fatten this little piglet up!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Katie Beth is 9 months old!

Dear Katie Beth,
Whew, whadda month!
Okay, so a month and a half since the last letter. But still, you've certainly grown up in a few short weeks! Around mid-December I realized that you were doing really well sitting up without needing a pillow for protection. Then I blinked, and you started leaning forward and putting weight on your hands. I turned around, and you began to crawl. I must've sneezed and suddenly you are pulling up, balancing and even cruising along furniture.

Knock, knock - who's there?
It's Katie Beth!
"Here I go...weeeeee!"

loving on the lamb
This rocker makes you shriek, squeal and scramble out of my arms. Just like the bathtub does.

You absolutely love your baths and still don't really mind when water gets in your eyes...which is good considering how much splashing around you do in there. However, I did discover your first phobia this month - bubblebaths! (Da-da-duuuummmm) I misinterpreted your spastic arm flailing for wanting to join Ben in the suds, but the moment your skin touched the bath foam, you shot out of the water and up my arms like a wet cat! Then cries of terror ensued until you were safely out of harm's way.

Look who's standing up in her crib! Now that the mattress has been lowered, the guardrail is just the right height to gnaw on and thrash about on when angry that no one will rescue you from your crib as demanded. (which is hard to picture as happy as you look here!)

You will be our need-to-babyproof baby as there is nothing more intriguing to you than a brick fireplace, potted plant, power cord, or dog toy.

Well, except for maybe just the dog herself!
Zoe may not seem too interested here, but that certainly changes during meal time when she has to be constantly shooed away from under you. (no ulterior motives there or anything!)

Big (yet still toothless) grin after a yummy meal in your highchair

You may be weaning yourself as you have little patience most of the time for nursing. But you've been a great eater, only putting up a fight when I fed you beets. But they did smell like dirt, so I didn't push it. Otherwise, you've like spaghetti, scrambled eggs, chicken, taco meat, blueberries, bread - honestly pretty much everything. We also experimented with self feeding this month, and you LOVE trying to pinch little morsels and cram them onto your face...sometimes even into your mouth!

You are wearing size 2-3 diapers, 9-month clothes (some 6-mths too), and taking a morning and afternoon nap. At 7 p.m. you turn into a pumpkin and are ready for bed - and will let everyone know. Nights are still tricky as you'll have a great stretch of sleeping through the night, only to be followed by an equally long stretch of multiple wakings and crying. I'm trying to do better at letting you settle yourself now that your reflux seems to be more controlled. Lately we've had some early, 5:30 a.m. mornings, but I keep telling myself that like all baby phases...this too shall pass. (I also tell the Starbucks girl that I need another shot.)

And that hair. It deserves a letter all of its own. While you are in your ninth month of Bow Bootcamp in hopes that you won't constantly pull them out once you realize they are in your hair, they also serve a practical purpose of containing the wild mane atop your head! So long and stringy on top, you would never know that underneath, is not even an inch long.

It's been an exciting month: your first ear infection, Christmas, plane ride, and trip to Canada. You are keeping us on our toes, but the smiles, coos and eager crawls up our legs make it so very worthwhile.

I love you,