Saturday, June 30, 2012

A little bit Type A

Yep, Jackson is definitely our child. Justin and I both tend to be a little bit Type A so poor kid didn't stand a chance.

Check out how he spent his bathtime last night...

He very methodically lined up all of his bath toys, making sure that they all faced forward, and even sorting the most obvious ones by color. 
I love his serious face.

When it came time to get him washed up, I had to move some of the toys and he completely flipped out, yelling "All lined up! No, Mommy, all lined up!" over and over. Ha!

In other news, earlier in the night, he recited all of his ABCs AND counted to five! How did he get so big so fast?!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Here's looking at you, kid

We had our doctor's appointment today and finally got a good look at little Andrew's face! He definitely has mommy and big brother's pointy chin, but other than that, he looks like a little skeletor baby and it's hard to make out any distinguishing features. 

For those of you who have a hard time knowing what you are looking at in these pictures, I flipped the picture so that you are literally looking him in the eye. In each picture, you can see his eyes (eyes are open in the one on the left and closed in the one on the right) and little pointy chin. In the one on the right, you can sort of make out his lips.

He is most definitely still a boy and a big one at that. Based on his femur measurement, she estimated him to be weighing in at a whopping 2 pounds, 3 ounces. This is more the size of a 27 or 28 weeker rather than the typical 1 and a half pounds that's more average for 25 weeks. Hopefully he will decide to follow in his brother's footsteps and have mercy on his momma by coming a couple of weeks early!

As long as the rest of the pregnancy goes normally this will be our last sneak peek at him. The next time we see him, he should be in our arms!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

A Malnar Wedding

In 2008, I had the honor of serving as a namesake for Fish Camp. This was an amazing experience, but the best part was being able to make connections with the student leaders who were involved in Fish Camp. I was able to grow especially close to the two co-chairs of Camp Malnar, Gwen and Morgan.

This weekend, we were excited to attend Gwen's wedding! And we were even able to have a mini-Malnar reunion with Allie, Lizzie, Taylor and Morgan in attendance as well! Thank you, Gwen, for allowing us to share in your special day! We wish you a lifetime of love and happiness!

I wasn't able to snap a picture with just the bride, but I did get one with the lovely bridesmaid Morgan!

After the wedding which was down in the Houston area, we headed just a little farther south to my sister's house. My nephew Tristan was celebrating his 16th birthday and we were able to share in that celebration as well. Tristan is 16, y'all. If you live in the Dickinson area, stay off the road! =)

Jackson enjoyed some pool time with his cousins Annabelle and Evie.

He just worships his cousin Annabelle and she is so sweet with him. For days after we see Annabelle, Jackson asks about her..."Annbelle? Come play?"

It was a quick day trip, but we enjoyed getting to share in both of these fun celebrations!

In other news, we are down to a double digit countdown until baby Andrew arrives! 98 days now! I made the mistake of watching TLC's "A Baby Story" this morning--a grim reminder of how exactly this child has to make his debut! I know it will be well worth it when I'm holding that sweet baby boy, but I do think I will be avoiding this particular genre of reality tv for the next 3 months or so. =)

Sunday, June 24, 2012

While Mom was Away...

I was so excited to come home from my trip and was even greeted by a welcome home sign!

 But while I was here.....

Thanks for the picture Jen! I failed to take a single picture while in Auburn! =(

my boys definitely kept busy!

I left for Auburn on Saturday morning...that happened to be Jackson's actual birthday. My boys dropped me off at the airport at 6 AM that morning, and let's just say that no one was terribly happy to be up that early and saying goodbye. I tried to forget that it was Jackson's birthday--it was just easier that way and helped me keep it together. But Daddy made sure that it was a special day!

After a pancake breakfast, daddy took Jackson to his favorite summer spot--the splash pad! Later that evening, they met up with Amber, Julian and Jillian for some dinner and fun running around the fountain.

The next day, the fun continued with Nana's arrival! And what's more fun than more birthday presents?

And inside that box was this awesome summer fun...

Thanks, Aunt Janet! He loves it!

It sounds like everyone had a pretty low-key but fun week. Thank you for taking care of my boys while I was gone, Nana! And thanks for helping my little boy with my welcome home painting! I loved it!

Friday, June 22, 2012

24 Weeks

How far along? 24 weeks and 2 days

How big is baby? BabyCenter says about 12 inches  (head to heel) and probably getting close to a pound and a half. I feel like he's bigger. Hopefully we will get a good idea of just how big next week when we have another ultrasound scheduled because the sonographer wasn't able to get a good picture of his face at our 20 week appointment.

Best moment this week: Coming home! I was in Auburn, AL for a conference from Saturday to Thursday and oh how I missed my boys! Also, 24 weeks is the big week in terms of viability. If born now, baby would have at least a 50/50 chance of survival. Obviously, we want him to stay inside and cook for quite a while longer, but it feels like an accomplishment!

Movement: Lots of movement. He is usually crazy busy in the afternoon after lunch and I can now see some of those kicks!

Sleep: I wake up in the middle of the night with leg cramps and my hands are asleep (not necessarily at the same time).

Food cravings/aversions: Still nothing in particular.

Gender: Boy! Andrew Grant!

Symptoms: Ugh all kinds of delightful symptoms. The achiness has really started. Aching back, aching pelvis, and sharp pain when I try to get up or turn over too quickly.

What I miss: Walking up stairs without being totally out of breath. Ha!

What I am looking forward to: Slowing down a little! This weekend will be hectic with a trip to Houston for a wedding AND a birthday party, but then we should be able to take it easy for a little while.

On the to-do list: I made my pre-maternity leave to-do list for work! I'm currently calling it my 14 week to-do list since I'm not really counting on being there much beyond that (Jackson was born at 38 weeks, 2 days). Whoa the second half of this pregnancy seems to be flying by.

Daddy is...glad I'm home!

Jackson is...glad I'm home! I got lots of spontaneous hugs and even a few kisses yesterday evening after I got home, and he woke up extra early this morning (6 am) saying "Mommy? Mommy?" and we got to have some extra snuggle time. I would have loved the sleep but I enjoyed catching up with my boy!
What a ham, huh?!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Happy Father's Day!

I have a little secret to share with you....

Before Jackson, Justin wasn't sure he was ready to be a dad. I may have begged, pleaded and dropped babies into any possible conversation to the point that Justin agreed just so I would stop bugging him about it. Even throughout my pregnancy, his attitude was one of much more cautiousness compared to my over-the-moon excitement. It wasn't that he didn't want a baby--he just realized the incredible and overwhelming responsibility that it was going to be.

But from this moment on, any worry that he had about the kind of dad he would be melted away...

Nothing makes me happier than to know that our sons are blessed to have the best daddy in the world...just like I do! I can't wait for Andrew to meet his daddy. I know he will be just as smitten as his big brother is!

Happy Father's Day to all the best daddies in the world!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Happy 2nd Birthday Jackson!

Jackson is TWO years old! It feels like a blink since we were welcoming him into this world. How is it possible that my sweet baby is already two?

At two years old, Jackson is a delightful, funny, smart and headstrong child. He talks and sings almost non-stop. He sings along to many songs now but the current obsession is ABCs. As he is playing, he will just sing them to himself over and over. He is so close to being able to say them all! He learns a new string of letters every week and I predict he will be able to say them completely within a month.

He parrots everything and is more often stringing 3 or more words together. He has an incredible memory and is increasingly able to articulate the details of those memories. Last night we were singing “In a Cabin in the Woods” and he stopped me and said, “Pop?” and I said, “Yes, Pop has a cabin in the woods”. And he then said, “Deer. Night. Light (when they go out to look for deer at night they take a big flashlight to see the deer). Shhhhhhh. Baby deer. Mommy deer. Sleeping.”  We haven’t been to Grammy and Pop’s “cabin in the woods” in over a month but he remembers the details of a specific experience during that visit and can tell you all about it.

His favorite color is red and it’s his default response when you ask him what color something is. But if you push him and say “No, silly, that’s not red. What color is it?”, he will respond (usually) with the right alternate color.

He loves being outside, ketchup, trains, and Curious George. He loves Bob Marley and often asks to listen to the “Oo Oo Song”—his name for “Three Little Birds” because of the line “I’ve got a message for you-oo-oo”. He loves wearing shoes and will bring his shoes and socks to you if you forget to put them on when you dress him. He will also pitch a fit if we make him take them off and it’s not bath time.

Speaking of fits…oh my…this boy has some horribly impressive ones. He will carry on for literally an hour and virtually nothing can distract him from them except his paci which we have been refusing to give him except at bedtime.  And paci refusal just escalates the fit. Operation: Bye Bye Paci is slated for July. I’ve just been too tired already the past month or two and I know it’s going to be painful for all of us.
He’s super silly and will do funny things just to make us or himself laugh. And then he will say “Jack Jack funny!” He plays independently really well, but also loves to do puzzles or read books with mom or dad. He’s not a particularly mischievous child and we feel comfortable letting him play by himself in his room for short periods of time.

Oh baby boy you are just getting too big too fast. You are more fun and more of your own little person each and every day. Of course that is something to celebrate and we love sharing in your joys as you discover all this world has to offer. But after the two fastest years of my life, this momma now knows just how quickly it passes by and just wants to hold on to your last remnants of babyhood. My absolute favorite part of each day is after your bath as daddy and I get you ready for bed, you hug daddy goodnight and then run to the rocking chair and into my waiting arms. We read a book, I sing our special songs, and you drift off in my arms. I know these days are numbered. You will soon be sleeping in a big boy bed and won't want or need to be rocked anymore. I know our relationship is going to change and grow and I am excited to see the strong, independent man you are going to be. But you will always be my little boy and your daddy and I will always love you with this fierce, protective love that is stronger than anything I could have imagined before you came into our lives. Happy Birthday sweet Jackson!

Friday, June 15, 2012

MORE party fun!

I leave for my trip tomorrow, but today we were able to squeeze in one more birthday celebration prior to Jackson's big official birthday!

This afternoon we went to Jackson's school and he got to share a special birthday treat with all of his friends there! All the kiddos were so excited about the cookie cake, but none moreso than the birthday boy!

Mrs. Donna couldn't cut the cake fast enough as Jackson supervised.

The strawberries were quickly discarded!

All of the kiddos thoroughly enjoyed the treat!

I can't believe that it's just a few more hours until our sweet boy turns 2!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

The After Party

After Jackson's party with all of his friends, we continued the celebration with our families and friends who are like family! We headed to Mr. G's to eat some pizza--Jackson's favorite!

After our yummy dinner, we went back to our house and Jackson got to open his presents from the family. He got awesome presents including some new books, sheets for his big boy bed, and train accesories.

He was kind of in love with his new trains...

And all those trains were about to have a great new home...the next morning he woke up to his present from mommy and daddy--a train table!

He loves his train table and it's amazing to see his little problem solving skills working and developing as he lays new track, figures out how the bridge works, etc.

Who enjoys playing with the train more...Jackson or Daddy?

All in all, I think he had a great pre-birthday weekend!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Choo Choo Happy Birthday to You!

Jackson's party day started off with a trip to the splash pad in the morning. We wanted to ensure that he napped well, despite all of the excitement and extra guests in the house, so we hoped to wear him out in the morning. Daddy, Uncle Marc and Pop loaded up and it turns out that running around at the splash pad for an hour did the trick! He slept great from 12:45-3:30 and was very well rested for his party.

Once everything was set up, I went and picked him up and then the fun got started thanks to so many wonderful guests!
Grammy and Pop

Nana and G-Paw

The 3 Muskeeteers! William, Jake and Jackson are best buds at school. They have been together in the same class virtually their whole lives. He LOVED that his friends were there to share his party day.

The Parks Family--Erin, Bryan and Logan

Another friend from school, Sophie, and her big sister Catherine.

Jake and Christen

Emily, Abby and Erica

The Josefy Family--Bree, Matt and Jonathan, another friend from school

Uncle Marc

Uncle Josh, Aunt Melly, Scarlette, Tristan and Evie

Julian, Amber and Jillian

As the guests were arriving, the kids played on the playground and then we lured them to the Pavilion with the bubble machine and snacks. 

We sang Happy Birthday to the birthday boy and he finally got his cupcake (red of course!) He wasn't quite sure what to think of everyone singing to him.

He did have the idea of blowing out the candles though (mommy helped just a little bit)!

After snacks, he opened his presents from his friends.

Jake gave him some sunglasses and they were a hit! He wanted to try them on and test them out right away!

Just as he was finishing opening his presents, the main event was arriving!

He was so excited!

For the next hour, everyone enjoyed riding the train, but I don't think anyone was more pleased than the birthday boy himself.

My precious Fievel train conductor boy.

Sweet Jack and Jill riding the train together.

Even Jake found that there was adequate leg room in the train!
A big thanks to everyone who was able to come and celebrate our little boy's second year--you made the day so special for him! And a huge thank you to our family and friends who pitched in to do whatever they could to help. We absolutely couldn't have done it without you!

Every day since Saturday, Jackson has asked to look at the pictures and watch the videos of his choo-choo party. I will have to get a video of him watching one of the videos--he gets perhaps more excited remembering and reliving his party than he actually was at the party. Which tells me that he enjoyed his special day as much as we had hoped he would. And that makes it all worth it.