Saturday, September 29, 2007

Edward had a very busy Saturday today. Instead of our usual father-son trip to the library, we decided to stay home instead and take advantage of a great fall day. He kept us busy, helping Mary to dig up a flower bed and picking up leaves, then rewarding himself for his hard work with a walk up the street to the park where he played on the slide played hide and seek and tried the climbing wall (with a spotter very close by). We then went home so he could ride his bike. He got to take a nap after all of this, and Mary and I both felt like we needed one!

Otherwise, Edward had a good week. He does have an ear infection -- he's been tugging on his left ear and getting up around 5:30 every morning this week -- and got medicine for it on Thursday. He seems better, and as these photos clearly show, his energy level is still high.

Helping mom garden.

Picking up leaves with Mom's gloves.

Running to hide.


Caught... making a goofy face.

Climbing (very low to the ground).

What's that? A ladybug.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

As the fall catalogs have started to fill the mailbox the last few weeks, I've been looking ahead to Edward's winter wardrobe. We are SO lucky to have many of Edward's clothing needs covered through hand-me-downs, primarily from his cousin Sean, who is 9 months older. But Sean lives in Phoenix, where "winter" just isn't defined the same way. The second-hand gods were smiling on us when some friends in Minneapolis gave us a really nice Lands End winter jacket size 2T last fall. I checked on snow pants in the LE catalog and was a bit taken aback at the $34.50 price tag. Next stop eBay, where a search for "snow pants 2T" turned up several options, including one that was for a "lot" of 2T clothes with two pairs of snow pants, three pairs of pants and one sweater. I must have been one of the few with winter on the brain because I ended up bidding against only one other person and "won" the whole collection for $11 plus shipping. And, TWO pairs of snow pants means one can stay at daycare so I don't have to schlep them back and forth for outdoor activities every day. Woo hoo! Clearly Ed was getting a kick out of his expanded girth. Not sure how he'll do when fully bundled and wearing boots, but I hope he enjoys it more than last year.

It actually has been much warmer here since the last post (about the potential frost, which I did take some grief about from Arizona.) We've been back in t-shirt and shorts and Edward has been demanding "outside!" at almost every waking moment. He got to see both sets of grandparents this weekend and demonstrated his climbing and sliding skills at the park. He has mastered the art of crawling up the slide, though it's slow going so lucky there are hardly ever other kids there demanding a turn. On Sunday Gram and PopPop wore him so ragged all morning that he actually fell asleep in his high chair while eating his peanut butter sandwich. He's been sleeping quite a bit lately and his daycare teachers suspect a growth spurt. Maybe he'll stretch himself out of that cute little pot belly!

In non-Ed news, I forgot to post last week that I had another pre-natal check up and all continues to be well. My blood pressure and the baby's heart rate were both well within normal range. Next week we'll have an ultrasound and get some pictures of this new little person!

Monday, September 17, 2007

Our weather turned quite cool at the end of last week. Overnight Friday into Saturday the forecast called for a possibility of frost, low of 32. For the first time, I decided to cover my plants. Usually by the time a frost comes along, I'm ready to be done, but there are still tons of green tomatoes out there and lots of basil waiting to be whipped into pesto. It was only supposed to be a one night dip and then back to more moderate temps. So Edward and John helped me pick all the ripe tomatoes (and some unripe, as Ed doesn't really make the distinction--he just loves putting them in the bucket) and a grocery bag full of basil. Then I put tarps and a blanket over as much as I could cover and figured the rest would have to be sacrificed.

It turned out it didn't actually get that cold here, but the protection was probably a good idea anyway. It's warm again now (80s in the day 60s overnight) so I should have a bit more time for harvest before it's really over for the year.

Cooler temps also meant Ed needed to return to warmer sleepwear. He absolutely will not keep a blanket on, so footie pajamas were essential. It didn't get too cold inside--our furnace never kicked on--but still, we didn't want him to be shivering alone in his crib. He was very confused about why his feet were covered and kept pulling on the pajama feet saying "Shoes?" At least last winter's jammies still fit. I was worried I'd try to pull them up and realize they wouldn't go all the way up to his shoulders or that his toes would be straining against the foot seams. But he got used to them and by morning was comfy enough to toddle around for a few hours before getting dressed. He even climbed up to read the paper with John. His preferred section: "Cars!" (a.k.a. classified ads.)

His Hawkeye spirit was enthusiastically received at daycare Friday, when they celebrated "spirit day" in advance of the big Iowa-Iowa State matchup. Unfortunately his spirit did not help the Hawks, who lost a nail-biter to ISU in Ames. Edward napped through most of it, but woke up for the last few plays when Iowa State nabbed the victory with five seconds remaining. He was unmoved by the experience. By the way, Gram thinks the bibs should be banned. She's such an out-of-stater!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Edward and I braved a lot of mosquitoes on an otherwise gorgeous Iowa evening to look at a wooly worm, ride his bike and chase rabbits. You know, typical boy stuff.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

No new photos tonight, but a couple of funny moments that are worth sharing even without accompanying images.

Our dinner this evening was tri-color rotini--Ed's with marinara and John's and mine with fresh-from-the-garden pesto. John speared Ed's first bite on the fork and Ed slurped it in, per usual when it comes to pasta. But on the second bite, Ed took one look and said, "No." No fit, no screaming, just a matter-of-fact, "No." We couldn't believe it since pasta is one thing he'll always eat. Some other dinner options are more of a crapshoot that can end up in a scramble to throw a substitute together at the last minute. Aware of Ed's budding independent streak, I suggested that John put the bowl on his tray and see if he'd eat that way. We knew the fork would be abandoned and there was a risk that if he really didn't want the pasta he'd throw the whole bowl on the floor, but we like to live dangerously (ha!) Ed plunged his hand into the bowl and fed himself a mouthful. While chewing, he picked up another noodle, looked at it, said, "No," and put it back in the bowl. This continued until he asked for "More, more!" We looked in the bowl and found all the green rotini pieces rejected. We mixed in some more noodles and once again he ate all but the green ones. Who knew he had such a discriminating palate?

Later, after his bath and stories, he was running a bit crazy and we figured he was trying to keep himself awake. When he randomly grabbed his firetruck in the middle of a hide-and-seek game with John and started furiously pushing it back and forth, we knew he was on his last legs. We asked, "Ed, are you ready for bed now?" He said, "Ni-nite" and laid the truck on its side--better for sleeping apparently--then trotted into the kitchen for his pre-bed juice and was off to bed in no time. He was quite tired as he had cut his nap short by almost an hour today (for unknown reasons that I pray will not become a new habit) and then spent most of the afternoon playing in the park.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

"What's that?"

Edward's latest verbal achievement. I think I've said before that he seems to learn a new word daily. This past week "cracker" and "bus" were added to the line up. And also, a phrase, "What's that?" I thought he was saying it, but wasn't sure and didn't mention it to John. Then John was making coffee Saturday morning and Edward pointed and asked, "What's that?" John came in the living room wide-eyed. "Did you hear that? Did he just say 'what's that?' " We spent the weekend answering that question and expect to do so for many months (years?) to come. Sometimes it's hard to tell what he's asking about. For instance, tonight at the grocery store, he pointed to the produce display and asked, "What's that?" I tried to follow his gaze and specify the vegetables. Hope I didn't provide any misinformation!

This week we also tried on some of the size 2T gifts Edward received at birth including these awesome gamebibs from Aunt Ann. For non-Iowans, let me just tell you that these are difficult to find in children's sizes, but fly off the shelves for die hard "adult" Hawkeye fans who wear them to sporting events--mostly football games. We tried them on over his regular clothes, so the shirt doesn't really complete the outfit, but you get the idea. They're still quite a bit long, but we'll roll the cuffs and send him out there with a "Go Hawks!" (Maybe that can be this week's phrase, in anticipation of the big Iowa-Iowa State showdown on Saturday.)

Last week, Edward got the thrill of his young life when he woke up from his nap to see John mowing outside his window. We've mentioned his love of lawn mowers and to see his beloved father pushing one was almost more than his little heart could take. He stood rapt at the window watching John go back and forth, shrieking with delight when he got close and leaning almost through the screen when he walked away. When John finished the side, Ed ran to the front window for the second act of the show. And as if this weren't enough already, he got to watch four mowers in simultaneous action on Monday when we stopped for a quick lunch on the way home from our Dubuque trip. We sat by the large front window so he could watch the mowers along the side of the highway. Ketchup and lawn mowers--what more could a boy ask for? He had sweet dreams all the way home.

Grandma and Grandpa Kenyon also got a treat this week--a visit to Edward's daycare on Friday for lunch. Families were invited for a potluck, but since the kids eat at 11, and I work until noon, the timing wasn't quite right. They're also having a special Grandparents Day celebration tomorrow afternoon, but it's during Ed's nap time, so again, we were off. But sending Grandma and Grandpa for the potluck was a stroke of genius. They loved it and Edward was clearly thrilled to have them there. When I arrived to take him home, he was sitting in the rocking chair with Grandpa. I asked, "Edward, who came to see you today?" He grinned his big toothy grin and pointed emphatically at Bill's chest, then looked over to Holly. We practiced saying "Grandpa" on the way home and he was getting close. He can already say "PopPop" for my dad. "Grandma" seems to be the hardest, but he'll get there.

Happy Grandparents Day!

Monday, September 03, 2007

We celebrated the long holiday weekend with a trip to a waterpark and resort in Dubuque Sunday and today. We worried about whether Edward was too little to enjoy things, but he really gets into playing in the fountain in downtown Iowa City, so we hoped that would carry over here.

For the most part it did. We won the trip in a March of Dimes silent auction last year, and it included an overnight stay and entry to the water park. We arrived Sunday afternoon and promptly went to the waterpark area. Edward seemed to enjoy himself, playing in the zero-depth end of a wading pool that has a lot of water shooting out everywhere. There was a small slide, and with one parent at the top and the other at the bottom, he did OK and had fun on that. He went on one of the waterslides with me after I determined it was pretty slow, but it went so slow that he had a chance to think about things and decided he didn't like it very much.

We had dinner, then returned in the evening (after a nice walk around Dubuque to digest), but as soon as we got into the zero-depth area again, a little girl came up and played with one of the water jets, sending water into Ed's face. He does not like that (unless he's controlling it), and that coupled with some fatigue meant that the evening was pretty much a wash.

We went back this morning, and after a slow start where he didn't want to do anything, he saw a baby even smaller than he was and decided that he would show off by playing in the spray. It was the most engaged he was for the whole trip, and it made up for a night with little sleep thanks to our noisy neighbors and the fact that a train seemed to go by the hotel every 15 minutes, whistle fully engaged each time.

There was plenty of good people-watching for all of us, and Edward in particular enjoyed the chance to watch big kids playing and water flowing. Everywhere you turned there was water spraying out of a spigot or falling out of a bucket or dropping from a platform. It was tough to keep Ed's attention at times, because he was happy to sit back and observe.

Of course, this being Edward, he had as much fun with things that didn't involve water as not. In our hotel room, as we have found to be the case on other trips, he finds the telephone to be a very fun and exciting toy. Any time a phone rings in his world, he is quick to shout out, "Hello!" With an analog phone, he loves to endlessly pick it up and do the same thing. He spent pretty much all of his waking time in our room doing just that, though he would alternate that with occasional looks out our fifth-floor window to watch for boats going up and down the Mississippi. It was his first experience with boats as far as we know, but after we told him what they were, he took us at our word and would proudly declare that a boat was in view, then run back to the phone.

Following is some video from the trip. He starts with some fun splashing, then plays with the spray jets in the zero-depth pool and finally finishes with some boat spotting, phone answering and shoe gathering. Enjoy.