Friday, July 26, 2013

When Life Hands You Lemons


Laugh at the sourness!

Despite always making the pucker-face when eating them, Brayden quite enjoys lemons. Lauren can't believe I allow this to happen, but he still enjoys watching the show. In the clip, you'll see a small taste of Brayden's hilarious fake growl-laugh (his real laugh is very giggly and high-pitched). He is an exceptionally amusing child and I have to stop myself from feeding him lemons all day long for the mere purpose of my own enjoyment (someone once told me that isn't why we have children).

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And if that's not enough for one day, Brayden's wake-ups (both in the morning and after naps) are always cheer-fests. This is one of the more low-key ones, but I love the recent noises he's been making.


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Brayden Donovan. For our viewing pleasure.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Tis the Season...


It's almost that time of year again. The time when our family's Saturday wardrobe consists of only two colors. The time when my husband scares our dogs with all of his screaming. The time when we argue with friends we met after college. We're definitely gearing up over here because it's almost college football season.

The hubby and I have Michigan season tickets and are hoping to make it back to Ann Arbor for three games this year (Michigan friends who are interested in games we're not using are encouraged to talk to Lauren). In other words, tis' the season for traveling. With a toddler. Who hates car rides. ('Yikes' is right)

To make the situation even better, we've booked two additional trips before the fall. Since we'll be spending most of our time going to Michigan once the season starts, we wanted to be sure to see some other family before all that chaos begins. So I think that makes... what? Five trips in four months? Yep, that's about right. With the astronomical costs of plane tickets and doggy daycare, driving to Michigan sure seemed like a good idea at one point.

Even though we're biting the bullet and sticking with the plan, we're more than a bit nervous. Eight hours sure is a long time to listen to a screaming child. Therefore, we are now accepting all forms of advice on the car-rides-with-babies front. Any secret chants, potions, tricks or other spells are welcome desperately needed.

What? I just don't like to be confined. The stroller is one thing, but the car seat is quite another.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Thunder Thighs & Milk Cries

My darling boy turned one a few weeks ago. And as I told my husband this morning, he is wise beyond his year. He really is quite the character - always making us smile and giving us a good chuckle. So here are some tidbits of Brayden at one.

Magic Smiles
I had to take Brayden to a doctor's appointment with me earlier this week. After playing peek-a-boo with three different ladies, shooting smiles at two others, and walking around the room giggling at life, he had the entire waiting room in the best mood ever. I think this kid has a happiness force-field surrounding him. Anyone who gets within about fifteen feet of him can't help but smile. The doctor (who was running behind but heard no complaints from anyone) told me I should bring him there every day. Best waiting room toy ever. He's always been a happy baby and that holds truer than ever now.

♥ Love. ♥

Thunder Thighs
Brayden used to be on the small side for his age (around the fifth percentile only). He's grown into his body quite well. His one year appointment put him right around the 50th percentile. The problem with that is I think all the excess weight went into his thighs. The baby who used to always wear a size down for his age is now unable to fit his gigantor legs into 12 month pajamas. They fit everywhere else, but mommy and daddy have to play the "tight-jean-dance" with baby's footie PJs. As a result of this feat of nature, I've gotten to hear the men in my family explain to me all the sports that Brayden will excel at thanks to his thunder thighs ("Because really, a pitcher gets all his power from his legs, not his arm like people think.")

Trying to put on his shoe... but his thighs are getting in the way.

Milk Cries
My son likes loves milk. A lot. In fact, I actually had to ask about it at his 12-month check up. I think he'd drink half a gallon in a day if I let him. Brayden's pediatrician said to keep his daily intake between 16-24 ounces (too much calcium blocks iron absorption which can lead to anemia). The day after his appointment, we started regulating his milk. All I can say is Brayden was not happy. In fact, he was down right pissed. Every time the bottle was empty, he would grunt, scream and try to swat at it out of frustration. I've talked to some of my other mom friends who have the opposite problem so I guess I should feel... lucky? Is that it?

Blankets, Belts & Balls
Brayden has recently taken a liking to playing peek-a-boo with himself under blankets. One day while I was folding a blanket, I put it over him and asked "where's the baby?" He got the biggest kick out of it ever and now whenever I try to fold a blanket, he comes running over and dives into it. He also takes blankets off the couch and covers his face and then (all excitedly) pulls it down and smiles at us. His own version of peek-a-boo, really. Other favorite play items include daddy's belts (he loves dragging them behind him as he walks through the house or holding them over his head like Indiana Jones) and balls - which he has recently started dribbling across the living room with those thunder thighs of his. The first time he did it, I thought Lauren was going to jump through the roof. (I haven't seen my husband that excited since the NCAA tournament.) We were eating dinner and saw Brayden do it and dear hubby leaped out of his seat to grab the video camera. Wow.

Peek-a-boo!

Pointing and Sharing
Another recent trick of Brayden's is to wag his finger at me like an authoritative parent. Not sure where he picked that up since I don't think I've ever done that to him before. He already points at everything, so I'm guessing it's just an extension of that? We're also in the midst of a sharing phase. He tried to give everyone (mommy, daddy, strangers and puppies alike) a variety of toys and food. He routinely hands rice cakes to grocery clerks and just loves to feed the Mama. Yesterday, he took his spoon and tried to feed one of our dogs. After she licked the spoon, he promptly put it back in his mouth. Of course.

I don't know what this is, but you can have some if you want.

So Hard on Himself
Though Brayden is quite the happy baby, he's been getting a bit frustrated with himself when he tries to do something and can't. When he can't stack the blocks just right, he gives a yell and chucks them across the room. When he's tired at the end of the night and is having trouble keeping his balance, he pounds the ground out of anger. When he can't put a lid on the tupperware he's playing with, that gets thrown across the kitchen, too. Give yourself a break kid. Your motor skills are still developing.

So that's my darling baby. Making people happy, drinking his milk, growing his thighs and spoon feeding our dogs. He definitely keeps us entertained. Looking forward to what comes next. ♥

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Wednesday, July 10, 2013

The Blur That Was 'June'

Wait a minute. You mean we didn't just get back from our trip to England? It's more than a month later now? So then what happened to that one month? I think it's called "June" or something?

Oh that's right. June was renamed Chaos. And before I knew what was going on, May had turned to July. What happened in June? So nice of you to ask.

The big day. My son turned one. Holy crow. It's been an entire year!

♥ Happy Birthday Brayden! ♥
The 50 percent party. We threw him a birthday bash where I managed to only get about half of what I wanted for it complete thanks to a bit of procrastination and a horribly timed power outage the day before. Thankfully, my lovely guests made it a great day anyway.

An adorable baby and Daddy hanging out at the big bash.
Money hemorrhage. My dad always told me that when planning out a budget, make sure to pad in extra money for unexpected expenses. Like a microwave breaking or a tune-up on your car. Couldn't really predict the several thousand dollars dropped on a new air conditioner (what an unsatisfactory way to spend thousands of dollars!) and my dog's new ambitions (see below).

Icky Paw. My dog decided to try to regain the title of "most expensive living being in the house." (I joke about it now only because she's healing. We were pretty worried about her for a while!) Emergency vet visits, three kinds of medications and all kinds of injury-goodies later, the title is hers. (Temporarily, I'm sure)

The puppy who has seen better days. Poor Kinley!
On the move. Every day seems like a new playdate, activity or other event on the calendar. We're always doing something, it seems. And now that Brayden is 100 percent mobile, I'm keeping busy chasing him inside the house as well.

"Holy cow! I'm doing it!"
Brayden has also picked up several adorable habits and skills over the past month. More to come on that this week. :)