Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Rewind A Bit - Thanksgiving in the Desert

I've been waiting on my dad to upload some pics from Thanksgiving so I can post. Yes, I do own a camera but no, I didn't take any pics while we were there. When you have a simple point-and-shoot camera and everyone else in your family has fancy-smancy SLR cameras, you tend to not take pics when they're around! I didn't even take my camera to Christmas! The only downside is being at the mercy of other people uploading stuff.

Every Thanksgiving since I was little my family has gone to Anza Borrego to camp. Some years Brian and I go out a few days late so that we can spend Thanksgiving Day with his family. That was the plan this year until Brian got horribly sick with a killer cold that started out looking possibly flu-ish. In order to attempt to not get his germies, Austin and I drove down Friday morning by ourselves. And Brian actually felt semi-good enough to come down Saturday. Lots of driving for the 3 of us (it's about a 3 hour drive - more if you take the wrong exit like I did!) And then we all drove home Saturday night. Short trip but we still had a great time visiting with family.

Since I didn't have a blog last Thanksgiving, here are some from Austin's 1st trip out to the desert! (Granted he didn't spend much time out in the desert - just mostly in the comfort of my parents' motorhome!)

This year we did about the same! Normally we go off-roading but being all big and preggo, I didn't feel it would be prudent to do so. If McKenna has any chance of not being as ditzy as her momma, we figured it would be good not to jostle her around a bunch and save all those precious brain cells. So we just hung around camp and schooled Auntie Susan in card games! We did make it outside a few times but Austin is about as impressed with sand as he is grass, so we didn't spend a lot of time outside!

Some favorite shots of the weekend...

You wouldn't think the desert could be beautiful, but I think it always is! I love this place!

A gorgeous sunset.

Me and my precious boys! (I heart Austin's beanie so much in this pic!!)

Austin playing with his Auntie Suz and cousins. (Yes, Boomer counts as a cousin!)

My brother was clever and brought a projector and screen and everyone had movie nights outside. We obviously camp the old fashioned way.

My niece and nephew pretending they are on Santa's sleigh. Boomer is the reindeer!

A gorgeous double rainbow

It's possible that Bryce's beanie is a little big.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Santa's Not Welcome 'Round Here!

Three weeks ago, Santa visited our street and we thought it would be fun to take Austin out to see him. I don't know if it was all the police cars there, all the people, the fact that we were a little rushed to get him up on the sleigh before they left, or if he just plain is scared to death of chubby men with big white beards all dressed in red...but no matter what the reason, Austin did NOT like Santa Claus. Even when Daddy went up with him, he was still not a happy camper. We got a glimpse of his "Get me out of here" look that we'd only seen one time before at his 1st haircut.

Thankfully we did get him to calm down slightly for a decent shot of three of them. No smiles, but no screaming either. We'll take what we can get!

The following week Austin was over at my parents' house while I was out galavanting with my gal-pals. (aka eating really really yummy and way too much Italian food with some of the best women in the South Bay!) That night Santa just happened to come down their street, so Nani and Papa thought it would be fun to take Austin out and see him. They did not know about his previous experience, otherwise they may have thought twice. He didn't even let my mom get anywhere near the sleigh, let alone up on that crazy man's lap.

You can just see the look of distress on my poor boy's face!

Hopefully next year he'll be willing to at least smile for a pic or two.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Evolution of Walking

I've been trying to get around to post video of Austin walking for weeks now! But by the time I get around to uploading video of him, he's already made more progress and I feel like I should post that video. So I decided to post a quick video of each "stage".


First Steps!

Waddle, waddle, up, down, up, down..
(Or as my dad calls it.."His boxer stance")

Almost a pro!

It's so amazing to me how quickly that all that progress was made. From a baby to a little boy in a matter of a few weeks!

Balloon Boy

One of the things I forgot to mention on Austin's 14 month update was how much this kid loves balloons. When we're driving down the road he's able to spot them everywhere. So when he got his 2nd haircut a few months ago and they gave him a balloon for "surviving" it, he was in heaven! That balloon was his best pal for several days until it was a sad deflated blob.

Who needs toys? I should just invest in a helium tank!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

14 Months (And A Week...Again!)

I know I'm very behind!! I took Austin's Pooh pics more than a week ago now, but between Christmas shopping and what-not, I'm very behind on actually posting! I have a feeling that this is going to be the story of my life though! If I have a hard enough time posting about one kid, how bad is it going to be with two?!?

New this month...

We have an official walker. On our way to a runner! About one week after I posted his last month update, he decided that walking was the way to go. Unfortunately it was the week that Daddy was out of town, so Brian got little video updates each day on his phone. Each day was a little bit steadier and a little farther. He took some good tumbles in the last three weeks but they are getting fewer and far between. I am very thankful I put up the bumpers on the tables and the fireplace though, or we'd have several more posts like my "Not Me Monday" post!

My absolute favorite part of having a "walker" is having him come running to me when he wants me. He'll come and give me hugs and kisses and then take off to play again. That's the best!!

He's getting much better at signing. Last month he was doing "More", "Milk", "All Done", and "Phone." Now he can do "Bath", "Sleep", "Please", and "Cheese." "Phone" and "Sleep" look an awful lot alike and "Please" and "Bath" do too. And often if you ask him to say "Please", he'll sign "Cheese"! But he's definitely getting more consistent and clearer. And he's done what I consider to be 2 word sentences! He often says "More fishies" (even though his "Fishy" isn't the right sign - it's a fishy face!) and he's asked for his nap by saying "Sleep Please" a few times! Such my little smarty!!

Tooth #4 finally popped through over Thanksgiving weekend.

He's starting to say more words, but they're not super clear and won't do them on command. He does a ridiculously cute "Hi" when he first sees you and occasionally will say what I'm pretty sure is "All done!" He can tell you what a kitty cat says.

Austin loves to give kisses. He even puckers up his lips...most of the time...if you're lucky! If you're not lucky, you get a big sloppy kiss instead! But they're both wonderful!!

He's recognizing an amazing number of words and phrases. I'm always surprised when he understands something I ask for, like "Bring me my wallet, please." I don't know how he knows the word "wallet" exactly but he must just be a little sponge! I think my instinct is to assume that because he can't say the words that he shouldn't understand them either.

He's started enjoying videos this month. After he wakes up from a nap and is still a little drowsy, I sometimes set him up in front of the computer and play Veggie Tales Silly Songs for him on YouTube. He is mesmerized by them and asks for "more" when each one ends. I can tell that there are some he likes and some he doesn't, because he'll sign "more" in the middle of some instead of waiting for the end.

I no longer have a kid that sleeps in! We're lucky if he makes it until 7, which we have deemed "waking up" time. That seems to be the time that he's happiest when he gets up and makes it until a decent time for a nap. Plus it's the time that Momma doesn't feel like crying when she gets out of bed! So we encourage him to go back to sleep, which he's been doing a good job of doing, or if he's completely up, he sometimes gets set up with some toys in his crib. He's such a good boy and will play and play until Momma doesn't feel like weeping at the sight of the clock anymore!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

What's In A Name?

I was hoping to announce our Baby Girl's name when we announced she was a girl. But due to some indecisiveness on both Brian and my parts, we didn't have it quite figured out at the time of the ultrasound. I've always been the type to share my babies' names. Partly because I really stink at keeping secrets and know that there is no way I could not share for 3 to 4 months! And partly because I love the idea of calling her by her name from the moment it's decided. I feel like I knew Austin better when he was born because we had always called him by his name. It probably sounds silly, but it makes sense to me and that's all that matters.

So today I'm happy to announce that we won't have to go through the next 3 months calling Baby Girl "Baby Girl" anymore. From now on she is McKenna Rose Crowley!

McKenna is a name I've loved since high school. I went to school with an awful, awful girl named Makenna, but I really loved the name. I'm just choosing to ignore how awful she was (Seriously, she was just awful!!) by spelling my daughter's name differently. Makenna/Makena is the Hawaiian version. McKenna is the Gaelic version and since Brian is 1/2 Irish, we like that spelling better.

Also, in the midst of our indecision, we looked up the meanings of the names we were considering and discovered that McKenna means "Son of Kenneth" in Gaelic. Now while she's not a son, it is a fun tie to my family cuz my dad's name is Kenneth. The significance of being linked to my family put us over the edge for the name.

Her middle name, Rose, is in honor of Brian's mom, Grandma Judy. Judy's maiden name is DeRose and we've known for a while that we'd love to use Rose as the middle name because of that! I love that she will carry a little bit of each of our families' heritage with her forever!

Now we just have to wait another 112 days or so to call her McKenna in person!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

How's Your Day Going?

This pretty much sums up my day.

How's your day going?

Monday, November 23, 2009

Not Me Monday

Not Me! Monday was born out of MckMama's desire to admit some of her imperfections and reveal a few moments she'd rather forget. She invited her readers to also post things that they couldn't possibly have done. You may find it therapeutic to join in and do the same thing!

I've never joined in Not Me! Monday because I've never done anything that would warrant such a post! After all I'm such an attentive Momma!

For example, it certainly wasn't me that turned her back on a one year old on a changing table to retrieve a sock, allowing him just enough time to tumble off and land on the floor. Not me! I would never do something like that!

And I'd never leave said one year old downstairs alone at my parents' house so I could just grab a few things from upstairs, only to find him, not 30 seconds later, rounding the top stair of their two flights of stairs! I know that it's dangerous to leave a child alone by himself! So that couldn't have been me!

And of course, I'd never take my eyes of my child near the bathtub while the water was heating up, even if it is just to flush a dead bee. Not Me! That's just asking for him to attempt to climb over the side, whack his head on the faucet and get caught under the down turrant of running HOT (but thankfully not scalding!) water! Nope, I always have 2 hands on my child at all times near the bathtub.

Oh and I'm sure it wasn't me that said "My child is soooo cautious, I don't need to wrap my furniture in baby proofing cushions! He's not going to fall hard." So it certainly can't be me that has a poor little boy with a huge red line down his forehead where he took a header into the side of the sharp-edged computer desk. If I did have a kid like that, he might look something like this...

And all of this wouldn't be in the span of just one week, cuz if I were to make such atrocious mistakes, I'd at least spread them out over the course of several months!

But once again. That can't be me. I'm such an attentive Momma!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

I'm Sorry, I Did Not Understand Your Selection. Please Try Again

I just learned that voice automated phone services do not work so well when you have a one year old. A loud one year old at that! The pilot light on our heater keeps going out and our house is ridiculously cold in the morning. So cold that my child has purple-y lips right now and my fingers are frozen. I'm trying to make an appointment for the gas company to come out and fix whatever needs fixing and this is how my experience with their system went.

Gas Company Automated phone lady: Thank you for calling the Gas Company. If you smell gas, please say "Emergency." If...

Austin in background: Blah blah blah doodle bwahh ahhh

Gas: I'm sorry. I did not understand your selection. Please try again. If you smell gas, please say "Emergency." If you have a billing question, please say "Billing." If you need an appliance fixed, please say "Appliance."

Me: Applian...

Austin:Pttthhh ahhhh grrrrr eeeeeee!!!

Gas: I'm sorry. I did not understand your selection. Please try again. If you smell gas, please say...

And that's when I hung up and realized that I'm just going to have to wait until naptime to make this appointment! Whoever designed those systems did not have children or otherwise they would have given me a touch-tone option.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

We're Having A Little ...............................

That's right! We're about to enter the grand new world of dresses and bows and oh, so much pink stuff! I can't wait! Honestly I would have been just as excited about a little boy too. It would have been fun for Austin to have a little brother, but I'm just as excited to do all the girly stuff too!

Our ultrasound was wonderful. She's healthy as can be. Cute little round head. Got all her brain, which is a good thing! Good pumping heart! Both kidneys! And the all so important 10 fingers and 10 toes! Our dr has a beautiful new ultrasound machine and you could (well, I could at least!) really see what the tech was looking at. It was so neat to see her cute little cerebellum and the ventricles or the brain and watch her heart beat in real time. This technology is amazing! Yes, I'm still an uber-nerd even in motherhood!

Isn't she just the cutest little Skeletor ever??

And look at that perfectly round little noggin'!

This one is kinda hard to tell what you're looking at, but she's sucking on her hand.

She was really active the whole ultrasound. I had a bag of skittles right before hand, in hopes that she would be enough of an exhibitionist to tell the gender. But I may have overdone the skittles cuz she was bouncing around a bunch. It's so weird to see kicks on the screen but only be able to feel about 1/2 of them. It won't be long though until I feel every kick and wiggle!

At one point she even reached down and grabbed her foot. You can see it in this pic.

That's a hand holding a foot. You can even see her big toe!

We can't wait to meet our little princess! What a fun new adventure!! I'm so looking forward to seeing Brian as big time mushy daddy too! All wrapped around a sweet little finger! But if she's anything like me, we need to start praying about the teenage years now!

Also, we have no final decision yet on her name, but hopefully we will figure it out soon. We just need to "live" with our few last choices a little bit before pulling the trigger. I can't wait to start calling her by her name though instead of calling her baby girl or munchkin! We'll announce it when we have it figured out.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

13 Months (And One Week)

We had to wait to get Austin's Pooh picture until Daddy was home during the day. I just can't wrangle a kid and get a cute shot. By the time I back up to take the picture, he's off the side of the couch, tackling the lamp! Definitely a two person job.

(Notice the spoon in his hand? Yeah, that's apparently the best toy ever! He crawls around with spoons all day long)

New this month:

OOOOh so close to walking. I mean really walking. He can take multiple steps in a row. But he has to be highly motivated. Which usually means he's walking towards food. If you put him down at just the right distance from the table he will walk to it to get Cheerios. But if you try to make him go too far, he gets down immediately and crawls. He did however walk to me from his walker! Awww! I think it was the farthest he had gone at that point! Double Awww!

As mentioned above, he loves spoons. He crawls around with them. Holds them in the carseat. Etc. I think it comes from us working on him feeding himself. He can actually do pretty darn good if the food he's trying to eat is relatively thick, like mashed avocado or applesauce. He likes to try to take his Cheerios or chopped fruit and put it on the spoon and then try to get it in his mouth. So far that hasn't worked out so great for him, but it's stinkin' adorable to watch!

He has learned to spit. If someone has a magic solution for making a 1 year old stop spitting, PLEASE LET ME KNOW!! I don't know why it bothers me so much, but it does! He used to just simply spit out food he didn't like, but now he does it with some juice behind it and then continues to spit like he's trying to get the taste out. And he's doing it just because even if it's not meal time. And he KNOWS it bugs me cuz he'll take out his pacifier, look at me, spit (with the most defiant look a 1 year old can muster up! Seriously, how do they learn this already???) and then stick his pacifier back in! I've tried saying "no, we don't spit", tapping/flickling him on the lips, time outs, and ignoring it completely and yet he still does it!

He learned to sign! I started signing with him at like day one, thinking if I did so, maybe I'd have a cute little 6 month old telling me what kinds of food he wants to eat! Yeah, that didn't happen. He could recognize them for a while but would never do them. All of a sudden, though, he picked it up! He does the cutest little "More" and he does "Milk" and occasionally "All Done." He seems to think that "More" is a magic sign that gets him whatever he wants whenever he wants, just cuz he's so cute! Nice try, buddy! We're also working on "bath", "mom" and "dad" and the different types of foods he likes, like yogurt, cheese, apples, etc. Again, he recognizes those, but won't repeat them yet.

He's loving all his new toys from his birthday party! It's so fun to see him interacting with them and discovering new things about them each day.

His walker is his absolute favorite things right now though. He pushes that around the house, almost non-stop. I think maybe part of the reason he can't walk is because he pushes it so fast that he's usually leaned forward at good 30 deg angle!

Austin is completely weaned. (Not that most of you care or really want to know, but I wanna have it in my notes) I was NOT ready to be done nursing but apparently my pregnant body was and Austin didn't seem to care. Over night, one week after his birthday) he went from nursing for all but one meal to nursing for only one! And then two weeks later he dropped that last meal too. Let me just say that that is a very mean thing to do to a hormonal woman! I was a mess! I'm better now though.

At his 12 month check up, he was 31" tall and 19.2 lbs. A little string bean! Actually he dropped from the 20th percentile in weight to the 8th! So we had to do a weight check again last week and he had gained appropriately. Still in the 8th percentile but at least he didn't drop more percentile points. We think he just wasn't getting enough milk from me. So weaning was a good thing for him. Plus he's a really active little guy. So it's not too surprising that he has a high metabolism. I wish I was in the 8th percentile for weight!

Naps have not been good this month! I want my good napper back please! He's just having a really hard time winding down. And often he'll fall asleep for 10-20 minutes and then wake up tired but wired. Just sits in there talking, or does laps around the crib. He's definitely tired enough though, cuz once he falls asleep for good he's out for 3-4 hours! I think we're getting close to dropping a morning nap too, since he often has a hard time falling asleep for that one. But some days he really needs it, so I'm not sure what to do exactly.

He loves lids! He will take the tops off of his Puffs container, a water bottle or one of his toy bins and then put them back on, over and over again. He's got pretty good control.

He likes to turn the lights on and off and loves to ring the door bell!

He is into everything! Which means I really have to watch him these days because we also discovered that none of the baby proofing tools actually work on our house! Seriously, the stove lock doesn't fit, the fridge lock doesn't fit, the cupboard locks don't fit, the drawer locks don't attach right, the stove shield doesn't stick because the contact surface was too small on our stove, etc. The only things that have worked are the outlet covers and the stove knob covers! Oh and he likes to pull the table corner protectors off too, so even those aren't safe!

The boy is addicted to Cheesy Goldfish! He wants them for breakfast, lunch and dinner and even the occasional 3am waking! How do I know this? Cuz he makes the sign for more and then makes a fishy face! It's horribly cute and horribly difficult to resist, although I'm trying! Good-for-you food first, then fishies! He doesn't quite get that yet.

We finally got tooth #3 and tooth #4 looks like it might be popping through any day now. But who knows. He still is such a slow teether but I have no problem with that since he doesn't seem to be bothered by them recently.

Austin is blowing kisses a bunch now. We call them fishy kisses. When Brian leaves for work and we tell Austin to say "Goodbye", he'll either wave or will make kissy faces. It's very sweet!

And I think my favorite new thing is that he starts to kinda hyperventilate when he excitedly is waiting for food! I need to get it on video cuz it's really funny. Crowleys do love food!

Note: Definitely stop by later Wednesday evening! We're hopefully finding out what gender the new munchkin is!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Since I didn't have a blog last year, I'm going to share cute pics of my little Baby Banana first!

He looks so enthused to be a banana, doesn't he?

We visited Daddy at work. Mattel has a great tradition of letting the children of the employees come trick or treat on each of the floors. Brian dressed up as Batman, The Dark Knight, since that was one of the lines that he was managing at the time.

You can see he was very excited to be at Daddy's work!

This year Austin was dressed as Winnie the Pooh, dressed as a Bee. I didn't think it would be a confusing costume but apparently it was! We got several "Oh what a cute bee!" (when they saw the antenna) and then "Oh wait, a cute Pooh Bear!" (when they saw that the front says "Pooh". I kept having to explain it! Regardless, he was pretty dang cute!

Isn't he the cutest??

Visiting Daddy at work again. This year he actually stayed awake! (Daddy went dressed as himself this year. It's a good look!)

Austin's still a little young for trick or treating, but I wanted people to get to see how cute he looked, so we went visiting!

Visiting Grandma Judy

Visiting Nani & Papa

Visiting Auntie Suz & Uncle Ryan

Oh and we decorated pumpkins too! The decorations were given to us by Brian's Aunt DeeDee. This was much easier than carving!