Thursday, October 30, 2008

More Laughter

I have posted many times about children's laughter. Sorry, here is another post. I just can't help it. Listening to Gilbert laugh makes me laugh...and smile!


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Monday, October 27, 2008

Birthday Road Trip

On Sunday we hit the road to the suburbs to visit friends who were unable to make the party. Why? Well, they just had their THIRD CHILD! Three. Trey. The trifecta. Wow!

So, we packed up the family, took out a birthday cake so all the kids could enjoy a little party and spend the majority of the afternoon just lounging, talking and watching the kids play together. For his birthday, they gave him an impressive set of bath toys including some write on the tub crayon that is water soluble. Can't wait to see that put to use on the dry walls!

The trip gave Kristen time to play with her godson as well as revel in some new baby time!







With a smaller crowd, Gilbert was a bit more comfortable when it came time for Happy Birthday and even let us don him with a birthday hat!



The Day After

After getting drunk on cupcakes the night before (witness the photo), Gilbert had a quiet morning after to recover. We saved a few presents from family that could not make it to the party. My parents and Kristen's mom had sent gifts so we opened them during breakfast.

Books, more toys that make noise (thanks Mom, Dad!) and a little cold hard cash rounded out the booty.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Party Of The Year

Cupcakes. Ice Cream. Beer. The ingredients for a guaranteed rockin' soiree! And the kids had their own food as well!

Gilbert was officially 1 year old on Sunday, but we held his party on Saturday. We invited family along with close friends to help celebrate Gilbert's coming of age. The condo was tight at times and if more had arrived, we might have violated the occupancy for our home!

As we prepared for the guests, Gilbert clearly realized something was amiss. Similar to being exposed to an unfamiliar surrounding, he retreated a bit as the condo was cleaned and prepped for the party. When Gilbert is unsure, one of his hands heads north and finds safety in his mouth. He's not sucking on his thumb or any of the other digits, but rather just keeps it there as his 'safety'.

What was a real treat was watching all the kids play. We had five kids ranging from five months to two years sitting, crawling, scotting, and walking around. Pure joy! Meanwhile the adults watched football and enjoyed some much deserved adult conversation.

Kristen's brother, his wife and Gilbert's cousin came in town from Ann Arbor as well as Kristen's dad and step-mother. And as the evening wound down they brought up their pup, Reggie.
The group put on a nice rendition of Happy Birthday and Gilbert had his first cupcake. At first he was unsure what to do with it. He stuck his fingers into the frosting and immediately began shaking his hand attempting to fling off the icing (he doesn't like anything sticky on his hands). Eventually one of the hands made it to his mouth and the sweet taste of the frosting registered and he greedily wanted more! You can see multiple efforts took place to get more of the cupcake into the mouth. Some success. Lots of failed attempts!


After cupcakes and ice cream were passed, we attempted to open presents. However, Gilbert was easily distracted by items that had true value...the tv remote! He received some excellent gifts. Many that made lots of noise and light up. THANKS A LOT!

While the adults gathered in the living room, the kids decided to convene in Gilbert's room for some serious playtime.
Everyone seemed to have a great time and we are extremely grateful for the generosity. THANK YOU!

Happy Birthday to Gilbert!

It is official! Gilbert is 1 year old! In his living memory, I wanted to share some pictures of his past year. Enjoy!






















































































Friday, October 24, 2008

Year 1 Draws To An End

Gilbert turns 1 on Sunday! The past few weeks both Kristen and I have been nostalgic as we have thought back over Gilbert's first year. Kristen, especially, has been rifling through all the pictures to see how much he has changed. Misty eyes included.

And changed he has! Looking at pictures from the beginning, it is hard for us to even remember how small he was when we came home from the hospital. We all think our babies are the cutest and we were no exception. But when we look at some of the photos and see that wrinkly mass I wonder what other people might have been thinking. Ha!

Luckily some things have not changed. His laugh seems to be the same. And many of his facial expressions we see today were present in the beginning.

But even better is seeing how Gilbert has developed! Each day seems to be more fun than the one prior. And the best part is that we have been able to share it with you...family, friends, friends of friends, co-workers, and even the blog passerby.

We appreciate your devotion (or at least the occasional visit!) to taking the time to stop by and see how the Little Man is doing. It has indeed been an eventful year and I'm sure Year 2 will be even more so...STAY TUNED!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Offering

Gilbert is now in his 'offering' stage. He'll scoot around with a item in his outstretched hand as if he is offering it to you. Sometimes he'll let go, other times he will hold on.

What has been fun is combining this with commands, per se. We have both been pleasantly surprised how well Gilbert has processed this information. Sometimes it works...

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...and sometimes Gilbert loses to the power of distraction or simply forgets his item!

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Tuesday, October 21, 2008

I'm A Big Boy

I have a new carseet. Mama sez I'm a big boy and I need a new seet for the car. So, on Sunday we visited the storage place where mama keep all her 'stuff'. Dada calls it something else.







Dada put me seet in the car and then I sat in it to test it out. I do not look back anymore. I see forward and now can see Mama and Dada while are in the car. I like to see Mama and Dada.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Early Birthday Present

Gilbert's 1st birthday is coming up and his first present arrived in the mail from his grandparents. Taya sent him the trifecta of toy hell - makes noise, lights up, and has moving parts. It is going to drive us nuts!




But seriously, it is a cool gift. Gilbert was not sure what to with it at first and decided to play with the other gift, the box!



He did warm up to the gift and jumped on for some exploration. A few more inches and he'll be able to push and ride it around the condo. Oh joy!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Laughter

You've got to love childrens laughter. The three of us were just lounging together when I started to roughhouse with Gilbert. He loved it. He was attempting to get to the camera that Kristen was holding and as the video shows, I was not making it easy for him. He laughed all the way!

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Saturday, October 18, 2008

Nature Trip

On Friday (one of Kristen's days at home with Gilbert), Kristen and Gilbert met up with one of her friends for an afternoon at the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum. Kristen's friend is a nanny for two kids, so field trips are the norm.

For Kristen it was an opportunity to get Gilbert out and do something new and at the same time have adult conversations. A win-win!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Hippos Go Berserk!

Is Gilbert's favorite book. Period. Of course, we have a growing library of Sandra Boynton books and I decided to visit her website (the picture is an active link) to see what else is available. I discovered a bunch of books exist that I have never seen in the store. Looks like it is time to place an order. Bath Time looks like a good addition. Maybe I'll keep that one for myself!

What? Who is Sandra Boynton? Are you kidding me?

How can you not know who Sandra Boynton is? If you have kids of your own, nephews, nieces, friends with kids, cousins who have kids, a single chick that is pining for a man so you can have kids, or even if you are a dude that is as single as it gets you still can't avoid knowing who Sandra Boynton is!

But if you still don't know - which means your head has been in the sand or perhaps up your a** - I visited her website and have provided the skinny on Sandra so you can be enlightened. For all the golfers that read this site, her success occurred when she signed on with the greeting card company founded by the same two blokes that created Bandon and Pacific Dunes!

As I mentioned, Hippos Go Berserk is Gilbert's favorite book. What is your kid(s) favorite?

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Victory!

Gilbert is hands off when it comes to food and drink. He does not hold his bottle nor use utensils to feed himself. Depending on the type of food, he will use his hands, but defers to the P's for the handling of sticky, mushy food.

When it comes to his sippy, it has been hit or miss. Well, this morning I was making my breakfast while Gilbert played in the kitchen. I set down the sippy in his vicinity and was shocked as he scooted toward it, picked it up, and drank from it...multiple times!

As Kristen came in I shared this wonderful news. She proceeded to shrug her shoulders and inform me Gilbert has done that before. Well thanks for bursting my bubble, babe!


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Wednesday, October 15, 2008

How Do You Sleep?

Who would have thought this is a comfortable way to sleep?

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Little Man Is Growing Up

Upon returning from our Michigan weekend, it was time to lower Gilbert's crib. Little Man is starting to pull up, and the last thing we want is a header off the high board! After his bath, we disassembled his crib and lowered the bed.

Not sure what was going on, he decided to oversee to ensure project execution! Not one to sit and watch, he acted as safety manager and confirmed the electrical cords were up to code.
He even picked up a mallet and was willing to roll up the sleeves on his robot pj's and assist!
Come clean up, he even offered to vacuum under his crib. What a team player!

Monday, October 13, 2008

The Drive Home

Returning home, we detoured to stop at an apple farm and pumpkin patch as it is definitely 'tis the season for buying some delish Michigan apples and a pumpkin for the upcoming fall season.Don't kid yourself, we knew we'd need the break for Gilbert.

Not timing the trip home with a nap, he was restless and needed to get out of his car seat!
At the pumpkin patch we just relaxed among the very-large pumpkins, fed Gilbert, and just enjoyed the open space and country air!





This photo was great capture. Growing up City, Gilbert was speechless as he was exposed to his first mullet. A mini-van full of family mullets - mom, dad, and kids - emerged for a pumpkin pickup. The dad's mullet was particularly sweet with a nice bald circle, but a full mullet that was definitely past shoulder length.

The Next Day

After the party, we all gathered for brunch at Tom's house. Just family, it was a dialed-down affair, but equally fun. With all the family in attendance, it was great to just chat, catch up and have a some good laughs! Gilbert was able to stretch his legs and scoot around, definitely not short on playtime pals!

Gilbert's cousin - Jasper - was in attendance on Saturday so Tom got the opportunity to hold both great grandkids!
We were both excited to see Jasper, but Kristen thoroughly enjoyed getting to hold her nephew. It was a challenge, but we were able to wrangle Gilbert for a group photo!

Party Time

This past weekend was spent in Michigan to attend the birthday party for Gilbert's Great Grandpa, Tom, who turned 75 on Sunday! Tom lives in Lansing, MI so we traveled up that day. We left early and while in town, we visited one of Kristen's aunts - Jo and uncle Randy. They are building their home to retire to and wanted Kristen's sage advice on the plans. While they worked, I spent my time chasing Scooter around and managed to catch a few minutes of football. It was definitely great to see them!

That night was the celebration. Thrown in his honor by one of his daughter's, Janet, the birthday party was held at Tropppo's in downtown Lansing. The evening was a blast! The room was quite warm - mainly due to all the hot air! Janet prepared a movie set against Johnny Cash, Tom's favorite, and included all the classic pictures you see from the eras of past. There were definitely some wet eyes after that movie finished. All children, grandchildren and Tom's good friends were present so it was definitely a cozy, raucous occasion.

For Gilbert, this was another test of his Little Man endurance. The party was a bit late and was filled with a lot of doting strangers along with family. He rocked! However, his stamina did wane so I took him to the hotel while Kristen stayed. The little guy fell asleep before I pulled out of the parking spot and didn't wake up until I slipping off his clothes for his jammies. In fact, I left him asleep on the bed with me until Kristen came in. He hadn't moved!

No Post Today

After a long out-of-town weekend, Kristen and I are taking a 'mental health' day. Lots to post, so for all those rabid Little Man blog readers, check back tommorrow!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Gilbert Does His Best To Channel Don King's Hairdo




What Day Is It?

You know the day is approaching when you hear the garbage trucks making the rounds. It is 4:37am as I write this post and I'm approaching 24 hours without sleep. I've been up all night and now creeping into the morning working on a proposal for work. Kind of taxing, but kind of cool, I'm working in concert with our Sydney and London offices at the same time - morning, day, and night all represented!

Anyway...I have Gilbert's monitor in case he stirs so Kristen can sleep. Yep, multitasking! Well, he was making some noise so I turned on the video to see Gilbert sitting up in his crib. But something was amiss. He was slowly, slightly swaying from side-to-side. HE WAS SLEEPING SITTING UP! Crazy kid!

I went in to lay him down and he popped awake. A quick hug and snuggle and he feel asleep on my shoulder. He was so warm, I didn't want to put him back down.

He's going to be awake in an hour and I will have not slept. Thursday promises to bean interesting day as I'll likely have to repeat my all-nighter.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Another First

Tuesday was a day of 'firsts'. Besides the haircut, Kristen called me at work to announce Gilbert had sat up in his crib during nap time. She came in to find him reading, er, playing with books he had pulled from the adjacent shelf.

Refusing to believe he had mastered the skill (which meant I'd have to lower his bed!), I brushed it off as a fluke. The reasoning? Gilbert doesn't crawl, he scoots, so even when out of his crib, he's been unable to sit up from a prone position. Granted, I have been working with him to learn how to sit up, but up til yesterday, only limited progress had been logged.

Well, last night I was on Gilbert patrol while Kristen was at the gym. For some reason, he cried when I put him to sleep. Battling the remnants of a cold and new teeth, I thought it was just SOP.

Watching through the monitor as he flayed around I witnessed him sit up from laying down. Too hard to describe the contortions he had to go through to achieve a sitting up position, my thought was, "Crap, I do have to lower the bed!"

The real fun was watching him as he was sitting up realizing it was pitch black in his room and wondering what to do. He located his favorite blanket, curled up in to a ball and feel asleep sitting up hunched over. It hours later when he unrolled and remained asleep on his back. I only wish the monitor had a record function. Truly fun to watch!

Little Man's First Haircut

Another sad indicator our Little Man is growing up...his first haircut. His coif was becoming quite shaggy was in dire need of a good snipping. So, Tuesday Kristen took him too where else? Snippits!

I missed the event but she took pictures! We've passed the place many times and it is the perfect place to bring kids for their haircuts. No standard barber chairs here! Kids sit in cars, spaceships, trucks, etc. for their haircare experience. The place is alight with all things kids, televisions, fun music, and bright colors flood the space.

Do you think that had a positive impact on Gilbert? Hell no! Still recovering from his cold, he was a bit dour to start with, but as the pics reveal, he was none to happy for his first haircut.

But check out the final product! The baby is gone! He's a Little Man!