Sunday, December 30, 2012

Christmas 2012

We had a very busy but wonderful Christmas this year! First, Grandpa was here for a few days. We had a great time hanging out with good food and surprises from Santa. On Christmas Eve, Randall cooked a fabulous prime rib, Sydney put out milk and cookies for Santa, and we got all the presents assembled and put under the tree. Mommy and Collin were both under the weather for Christmas, but it didn't slow us down too terribly much.

Christmas morning was so much fun. Sydney opened all of her gifts, all of Collin's gifts, and then "helped" open everyone else's. She was a happy girl.

Sydney's big gift from Santa was a "My First Trampoline." Grandpa and Daddy stayed up putting it together, and it's living in the garage until it's warmer out. She had tried one out at a friend's birthday party, so she knew what it was all about and jumped right in!

Christmas Day was beautiful here, so we enjoyed some time the park in the afternoon. I love these pictures my dad captured.

We closed out Christmas Day with bath time, where the kids played with some new musical instrument bath toys.

After Grandpa left, we welcomed Grandma, Pop, Uncle Corey and Emma. More family and more presents! These kids have been so spoiled. Here are pictures from Round 2 :)

Posts to follow will include the rest of Christmas week, Sydney's 3rd birthday and Collin's (gasp!) first haircut!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

11 months!

How is it possible that we are planning for Collin's 1st birthday already?! Our sweet and funny baby boy hit the 11-month mark this Tuesday.

After bath tonight, he was playing near his favorite upstairs location: the computer desk :)  It's close to his bedroom and the kids' bathroom, so while Sydney was still in the bath, we played nearby. I think there are few things cuter than a little one in his/her pajamas!

At 11 months, Collin:
  • is taking steps, but the record is only six at one time
  • can get up our stairs in what feels like 2 seconds
  • isn't saying much more than dada and mama (though his teacher swears he said bottle today - ha!)
  • wears some 12 month and some 18 month clothes
  • eats pretty much whatever Sydney eats, and still some baby food from time to time; favorites include any kind of beans, mandarin oranges, banana, pancakes, chicken, deli turkey & ham, yogurt, pears, and pickles
  • claps and waves at everything
  • is still a fabulous sleeper
  • smiles and laughs all the time
  • adores his big sister

We feel so lucky to be Collin's parents. He is an absolute joy. When he was first born, I questioned if life with two would ever feel easy. Well, I don't think "easy" is the word for it, but it certainly feels right :) We can't wait to celebrate his first Christmas next week and his first birthday in Virginia next month! Love you, buddy boy!!!

Friday, December 14, 2012

Random cuties

I haven't done a post since the recap of our Thanksgiving. Shameful! I promise to do better going into the holidays and then the kids' birthdays! In the meantime, here are some cute photos that don't fit into a blog post by themselves, really, but they are precious and worth sharing.

Our visit with Santa went GREAT. We did a trial run as you'll see a few posts ago (on a 70+ degree day in a parking lot, but whatev). It was the perfect way to gear up for the real deal at the mall. I love how this picture turned out! Sydney's smile is a bit hesitant, and Collin looks a little confused, but I think they liked him. I wish you could see the cute reindeer on Collin's shirt, but that's OK. This is a picture I took of the over-priced pictures we bought. :)

Sydney is consistent in her present request - a princess baby doll. I'm kind of ignoring the baby part, but I did get her a lovely doll - Belle from Beauty and the Beast. She doesn't realize that she can request things way cooler than that, so I think her big gift - this trampoline - is really going to surprise her. I imagine "princess baby" will suddenly become a thing of the past.

Last weekend, Randall had to go to Virginia to settle some of his mom's affairs, and he took Sydney with him. She had a great time at Grandma and Pop's house! She also loves going there to see all the pets. That is... two dogs, a turtle, a cat, and two birds. I think this fella is her favorite. I spent those days with Collin, and Corey's girlfriend Emma came down to join us for some shopping and hanging out. It was so easy with one kid, but of course I was ready for them to get home. Non-craziness isn't recognizable to me anymore.

The last random photo is from a couple of nights ago. They are still loving taking baths together, and poor Collin lets Sydney pretty much use him as a toy. It's cute and sad all at the same time. Ha! They both splash like maniacs and laugh their heads off. I love it, even if the bath-giver (and the whole bathroom) winds up soaking wet, too. She still calls him "my baby Collin" and I think it's so funny that she has no idea he's going to be WAY bigger than her in no time. For now, she can pretend she's in charge. Usually they are at opposite ends facing each other, but Randall caught this photo and it perfectly illustrates her caregiver ways.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Thanksgiving 2012

And this wasn't even everything --- the deviled eggs and stuffing hadn't made it to the table yet, never mind the pumpkin pie, banana pudding and birthday cake!
We had such a nice Thanksgiving holiday in our new home! Grandma and Pop came to visit along with Corey and Emma. Sydney was soooo upset when they left. We had delicious food (thanks to chef Randall), fun family time, and we squeezed in a celebration of my 31st birthday. All in all, a great weekend with perfect weather.

No clue whose brilliant idea this was --- goofy people

Chef Randall and his oil-less turkey fryer. Delish!

This person enjoyed the food the most. Since this meal, he primarily wants real food. Forget that pureed baby stuff!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

10 Months

Collin turned 10 months old on the 18th! I'm two days behind, but we've just been so busy, now that BOTH of our kids are on the go at such a crazy pace. It's hard to believe we'll be celebrating his 1st birthday in less than two months. Where has this year gone??!

At 10 months old, our sweetie, cutie-pie son:
  • is a crawling maniac
  • pulls up and stands on his own for up to 10 seconds - and is SO PROUD of this!
  • adores his sister and laughs like crazy at her whenever she's being silly
  • still just babbles, mostly saying things that sound like "dada" but he has all sorts of other words we can't understand yet :)
  • takes two good naps a day when we're at home; two very short naps at school
  • is eating every kind of pureed baby food and has moved into several finger foods
  • wears 12 month clothes and size 4 diapers
  • loves to bang on things, including the remote controls
  • can get up our stairs in no time; baby gates are my new best friend
  • shows a lot of interest in real toys; favorites are the play kitchen and anything that lights up and plays music - he dances!
Collin rarely cries. I heard a kid crying outside his classroom yesterday, and when Sydney and I walked in, I said "Oh good, that's not mine."  His teacher said, "Right, because Collin cries like ZERO times a day!"  That makes a mommy feel oh-so-good!

And here's his favorite person in the whole world, big sister! She loves "my baby Collin." I always say he doesn't have a chance because she is going to be all up in his business for the rest of his life. Ha! She's taking his picture in this photo --- her new favorite thing in the world. I spend a lot of time deleting!

 And of course she needed one by herself for good measure!
Now that our lives have settled down a bit, we're really enjoying being in our new home and starting to get acquainted with our new life. It has taken awhile, but each day is a little more familiar. We feel so lucky to have two healthy and happy kids. There are certainly challenges (hello, she IS a strong-willed toddler!), but this week is a great reminder to be thankful for everything we have.

Happy 10-month-iversary, Collin!!

Monday, November 12, 2012

A little Halloween, A little Christmas

(Don't worry, we haven't forgotten about Thanksgiving!)

Here is a recap of our Halloween. I think Sydney has had some pretty awesome costumes for her three Halloweens so far, and Collin is off to a great start! I loved their dog and cat ensemble this year.

Of course, when trick-or-treating was over, we returned home to the awful news about Randall's mother. I like to think that she would love knowing her grandbabies were out having a fun time on what turned out to be a terribly sad day.

Sydney liked to be escorted close to the door, but then she would knock/ring/accept candy on her own. Maybe by next year she'll be like all the other crazy kids running all over, wishing her parents would just leave her alone!This picture looks like our neighborhood was deserted, but there were kids everywhere. We just got an early start :)

Jumping forward and skipping a holiday or two, yesterday we learned that Santa was going to be part of a Humane Society fundraiser not far from our house. We thought this was the perfect opportunity to see if Santa was going to be considered naughty or nice by our kids this year. They love him! Sydney told him all about the princess baby doll she hopes he will bring her (now we must find one of those.) Collin didn't really care about it one way or another, but at least there were no tears. Can't wait to get them dressed all cute for a real visit to Santa (preferably with a nicer backdrop!) closer to the holiday.