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16 & 17 Months Old!

16 & 17 Months Old!

So…since I missed his post at 16 months…we’ll just combine 16 & 17…

How is it even possible that 17 months have already gone by since this sweet boy joined our family?  It seems like I just blinked one day and he had gone from an itty, bitty bundle in a blanket to a full fledged little boy.  He’s running all over the place, talks constantly, has very strong opinions :), and turns our house into a whirlwind of toys, books, balls, and puzzles in a matter of minutes.

Here are some specifics on our Parker-man over the last couple of months:

  • officially DONE with bottles!  They have all been washed, sanitized, and packed up to be used with baby #2 at some point in the future.
  • We’re assuming he’s still allergic to milk/dairy, though he can eat things that have milk as an ingredient.  We have though completely and seamlessly transitioned to soy milk and he LOVES it!  He asks for and drinks “nilk” throughout the day, but goes without it at bedtime now.   It’s been so nice that he decided he was done with it and we didn’t have to go through a transition phase.
  • Unless he’s in pain or has a bad dream, he sleeps a solid 11-13 hours at night.  He usually goes to sleep between 7:30-8:00 and wakes up about 6:30 (but will sleep until almost 8:00 on Saturdays!
  • He is completely obsessed with all things sports.  He loves to watch “ball-ball” on tv and doesn’t care which sport it is.  His frustration is very noticeable when it goes to a commercial or halftime.
  • He loves music (“susic”) and wants it on at all times – in the house or the car.
  • He is obsessed with pushing buttons.  He helps me push the buttons to start the washer & dryer, dishwasher, turn on/off the ipod or tv, light switches, etc…
  • His last 4 teeth (the pointy ones)  are coming in and it has been rough.  I think these teeth have been the worst so far.
  • Still a pretty good eater – loves almost all fruits, most veggies, meat, crackers, yogurt, applesauce, cereal bars, raisins & dried cranberries, cookies & donuts (treats), bagels, almost all types of cereal, goldfish, bread, pasta, pizza, waffles, pancakes, biscuits, cinnamon rolls, and ice cream.  I’m sure there’s more, though…
  • Generally takes a 2-3 hour nap after lunch.
  • Wears size 24 month/2T clothes and size 6 shoes.
  • Weighs about 28 lbs and is 33-ish inches tall.
  • He loves to be outside watching the birds, drawing with chalk, or blowing bubbles.  He thinks its great fun to dig in the dirt in the flower pots, pull the petals off the flowers in the back yard, and help us water the plants ;).
  • Point out the airplanes, trucks, & trains when we see them outside and knows the sounds each of them make.
  • Still loves to go to school and enjoys playing with his teachers and friends every day.  He’s even starting to refer to his friends at church & school by name.
  • Now knows that nu-nu’s (pacifiers) & night-nights (blankets) are for bedtime or the car – which has been nice.  The only other time he wants them is if he gets hurt or doesn’t feel well.
  • Loves to read books and can point to, name, & make animal sounds for tons of animals
  • Talks up a storm – I think I’m done trying to write down all the words he knows – considering he has a new word every.single.day.  His latest words though are “peas” (please), thank you, “buc” (cup), and Pak (Kaps – my mom).

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playing with his new mower from Mimi & Poppy for Easter – he loves to “mow-mow”

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Our Easter & bluebonnet pictures will have to double as 16 month pictures :)

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I just love this smile :)

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He loves to wear my sunglasses & always tries to put them on his head like I tend to wear mine :)

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silly boy!

Picture Catch-Up

Picture Catch-Up

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One of my cousins got married outside at Nana’s house a few weeks ago – Parker & Adley decided to enjoy the ceremony from the swing :)

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adorable :)

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Amelia, Adley Ann, me, & Parker – so thankful for family

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blowing bubbles :)

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We have a tradition of eating breakfast for supper on Friday nights and Parker was SO excited to help me mix up the pancake batter!  He LOVED pouring the water in and helping me stir it all up!

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sweet boy was so tired one day after school that he just climbed up in the chair with me and took a little snooze – I miss those afternoon naps with him!

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watching Jeopardy and eating snacks from the car is a favorite after school activity :)

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We finally broke down & bought a new mattress last weekend – ours had gotten really uncomfortable & neither of us realized how badly we were sleeping until our first night on the new one – so awesome!

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I just love to turn around & see this sweet smile in the back seat of the car.

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chowing down on an apple while we shopped at Whole Foods one evening :)

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2013 Stroll for Epilepsy at the Houston Zoo – we had so much fun!

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Annual crawfish boil – so delicious!

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being silly at supper :) – never a dull moment with little boy!

Trip to Abilene

Trip to Abilene

A couple of weekends ago, we had a long weekend for MLK Day, so we packed up and spent the weekend in Abilene with my parents and Christo.  We left around lunchtime on Friday and got to Abilene just in time for supper.  The trip takes anywhere from 5.5 to 6 hours and Parker did GREAT both ways.  He slept almost 3 hours on the way there and back, which was perfect since it let us stop in Temple, which is almost exactly halfway.

We didn’t have much on the agenda for the weekend and it was nice to just hang out and spend time with everyone.  The weather was absolutely gorgeous and we took complete advantage of it and spent lots of time outside.  Saturday afternoon we had lunch at Rosa’s – Parker loved his fajitas and tortillas and even got his first taste of sopapillas!  He ate a whole one by himself!  After lunch, we headed over to the Abilene Zoo and saw all the animals and even got to feed the giraffes!

Sunday afternoon we had lunch and then drove out to a little town north of Abilene to pick up my dad’s deer from the processor and then headed back to the house to get ready to take some family pictures that afternoon.  One of my parents’ friends is a photographer in Abilene and she came over Sunday afternoon to take some pictures of the 3 of us along the creek in the backyard.  I only have a few sneak peeks that Hannah posted on Facebook from the photo session, but they are so cute!  I’m so happy with how they turned out.

Unfortunately, we had to head home Monday morning, but we’re so glad it was a long weekend and got to stay for some extra time.  Can’t wait for our next trip – hopefully for part of Spring Break!

13 Months Old

13 Months Old

Parker celebrated his 13 month birthday right after Christmas and it’s just so hard to believe.  He is so much fun right now and I feel like he is a giant sponge soaking up everything around him every day.  It seems like he learns or does something new almost daily – sometimes multiple times a day!  This has been so fun to watch and we are loving this age right now.

The sun came out for a while on Sunday and it warmed up a little bit, so we slapped that sticker on his shirt and went to play at the park for a while!  – and got some super cute pictures too!

You LOVE to be outside and apparently – you like to slide!

You are really into exploring these days – inside or outside.  You always pick things up, examine them closely, proclaim your excitement of your new discovery, and then bring it to us to see – just plain adorable :).

You are constantly on the move!  You rarely stop – eating & sleeping are about the only things that will slow you down.

Just so I can remember a few things about you at this age:

  • You are a CHUNK!  Last week the doctor said you weighed 26 lbs!
  • You are still going to school everyday – and almost always have a smile on your face when I pick you up in the afternoons.  We are so thankful for such sweet teachers.
  • You are a GREAT eater.  You love to eat: ham, turkey, chicken, hamburger meat, pasta, fruit (of all kinds), waffles, bagels, peas, carrots, green beans, sweet potatoes, rice, refried beans, tortillas, bread, cereal bars, animal crackers, goldfish, wheat thins, almond/coconut milk yogurt, cheerios, and ice cream.  Obviously several of those are not things you eat frequently, but you enjoy them as a treat.  You happily drink water throughout the day, but you also like to drink apple juice and tea – usually mixed with some water.
  • Your milk allergy seems to be improving slowly.  You seem to be able to eat foods that have milk or butter in them, but still can’t tolerate milk to drink.  We’ve tried goat’s milk – but it also seems to upset your stomach.  It looks like we’ll stick with formula a while longer and try getting you to drink some almond milk too.
  • You are only drinking 1 bottle a day now – at bedtime and rarely you will have one in the middle of the night if you wake up and need help settling back to sleep.
  • Pretty much sleep through the night – unless something hurts.  We’ve had a rough month or so with ear infections and cutting those darn molars, but I know this too shall pass ;).
  • You are talking up a storm!  Words we recognize – Mama, Dada, baa (ball), no, buh (book), woof-woof, quack (without the q & k sounds at the beginning & end), muh (more), you will nod your head yes when we ask you if you want something and you also sign “all done”.
  • You are very good at pointing to tell us what you want and when you’re hungry you walk to the pantry door or refrigerator and bang on the door until we open it to give you something to eat.
  • You love to “wrestle” with us, play peek-a-book, read books, play with balls & cars, be outside, and you still love to take a bath and brush your teeth before bed
  • You give the sweetest hugs and sloppy kisses :)
  • Your smile is infectious and your laugh is music to my ears

Parker, we love you so much and we are so thankful for the joy you bring into our home.

Parker’s 2nd Christmas

Parker’s 2nd Christmas

Even though this was actually Parker’s 2nd Christmas, it felt more like his first because he was so tiny for Christmas last year.  He was only 3 1/2 weeks old at Christmas last year and most of that is lost in the fog that those early sleepless nights bring :).

This year was a lot of fun.  I love Christmas and it was always a big deal in our family to decorate for Christmas, buy gifts for all of our family, see Santa, make cookies, etc.  My family has such great memories of Christmas when we were little and I am determined for Parker to have that as well.  For some reason, this year was really stressful for me.  School went longer into December than it usually does and I found it to be very difficult to shop after school with a tired and fussy baby.  Amazon and the UPS man were definitely my friend again this year!  On top of all of that, Parker was sick with ear infections in both ears for almost 2 weeks before Christmas – whew, no wonder I was stressed!  In the end though, it all worked out – just like it always does.

We took him to Bass Pro Shop to sit on Santa’s lap – call me cheap or whatever you want, but I just couldn’t pay for him to sit on Santa’s lap for 5 seconds.  Bass Pro is free and we got 2 prints for free too!

Matt snapped this with our camera while they were taking their shot – he didn’t cry as long as I didn’t leave his side, but he wasn’t thrilled with being there either.

Parker LOVED the Christmas tree.  He got super excited when we would turn the lights on and would stand there oohing and aahing at the tree.  We have a small collection of plush, stuffed Christmas ornaments and I hung all of those and others that weren’t breakable all along the bottom branches so he could play with them.  He would pull them all off several times a day and carry them all over the house.  I felt like I redecorated the tree a hundred times a day!  He’s really into blowing on things that are hot right now and apparently the Christmas lights look alot like candles because he would stand at the tree and blow the lights out :).  Sweet, precious baby.

We started our Christmas celebrations with Matt’s mom, Kevin, Danielle, Julio, & Daniel.  They came to our house on Christmas Eve for lunch and presents and we all had a really good time.

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Of all the toys he received that day, this box and the wrapping paper in it proved to be MUCH more fun ;)

Christmas Eve night, we had dinner with my parents, Jillie, Jake, & Christopher.  It was the first Christmas Eve night we’d spent with my parents in a long time and it was alot of fun.  After Parker went to bed we put out all of the presents under the tree and got all of his “Santa” stuff set out.  Because I wanted him to really see and play with his new toys Christmas morning, I moved all of his other toys out of the living room and it really worked well.  Not to mention…it gave us alot more space Christmas morning.

We finally got everything wrapped, the stockings filled, and the toys put together and snapped this last picture before we went to bed.

We had a blast playing Santa this year.  I don’t know how we’ll always do things or how much Santa will bring, but this year it was all just out for him to play with.  He got an alphabet train, a rocking horse (made especially by Daddy), cars that zoom on the tile, wooden blocks, a See-N-Say, books, and a penguin that pops back up when you knock it over.  He’s had lots of fun with all of his new toys!

My parents gave him this precious rocking chair & he loves to climb up in with a book and sit and read :)

After we all opened presents and dug into our stockings, we got dressed and loaded the cars to spend the day in Winnie at Nana and Papa’s house.

Parker and Adley Ann in her new Barbie Jeep!  They sat in this thing forever and just had the best time.

Opening presents from cousins and Nana & Papa – new blocks!

This pretty much sums up his attitude toward his 2nd Christmas!  Like I said, he loved every second of the day and was absolutely exhausted by the time it was all over with.  We are beyond blessed with such wonderful and generous family and we are so thankful for their love.

 

Happy 1st Birthday Parker!

Happy 1st Birthday Parker!

How is it possible that my sweet baby boy is already ONE?  It just doesn’t even seem real.

Let me start by saying that I LOVE to plan and throw parties.  I am that crazy mother that started planning my child’s first birthday party when he was about 4 months old.  Not that it took me 8 months to do everything, but I was just so excited that I couldn’t wait to start thinking about it.

We decided very early on that we would have a zoo animal theme and then  I began brainstorming and planning…

wooden animal cut-outs for the yard – Matt cut them out of plywood and then we painted them & added the details

the front of the house

monkey cut-out with balloons

birthday banner – not a great picture, but we cut the pennants out of cedar fence pickets and then stenciled the letters on each one, connected them with thick twine and hung :)

birthday wreath made by my super talented sister

Parker’s “Month Pictures” banner inside the house

the food table – Matt built the crates and stenciled the “Animal Feed” sign

the cake :) – my mom is so incredibly talented!

friends & family :)

sweet boy LOVED his cake!

I just love this sweet face :)

our little birthday boy had a blast!

Parker’s birthday party was so much fun!  It was exactly what I had been envisioning for so long, but I most definitely could not have pulled it all together without the help of Matt, my mom, and sister…they were amazing!  and Parker had a great time playing with all of his friends and cousins who came to celebrate.  He had so much fun, in fact, that he took a 3 hour nap after it was all over :).  We can’t wait to see what this next year holds for our Parker-man and our family!

Photo Update

Photo Update

I’m not even going to try to come up with an excuse for why I haven’t updated this blog in so many months.  The last few months have been crazy, fun, busy, and full of exciting changes for us and our little guy.

I’m trying to wrap my mind around the fact that we’re actually finishing up everything for the big FIRST birthday and how we’re already at this point…it’s been an amazingly wonderful year and we have so much to be thankful for.

I’m going to let the pictures speak for all the fun things we’ve been up to recently…

We went to the pumpkin patch one Sunday afternoon – Parker LOVED it!  He wandered all around the pumpkins and had a blast!  He definitely did not want to leave & made all aware of his unhappiness as we walked back to the car!

our little turtle on Halloween!  It was REALLY cold outside, so we had to scramble to find cold weather clothes and the only hat we had that fit was this little puppy dog hat…oh well.  He was still adorable!

yes, we’re those parents who torture our child for the sake of getting a cute picture…
He actually didn’t mind it at all – other than it being a little chilly outside & the sun being bright.

 

Parker’s friend Clara also wanted to sit in the pumpkin…looks like she’s holding his hand in this pic!  Such sweet friends!

we had a pumpkin carving contest with our small group at church…our little pumpkin had to come outside & see what his daddy had carved.

We also took our first trip to the zoo!  Daddy bought us a zoo membership, so now we can go anytime we want!

checking out the giraffes

feeding the giraffe with mama!

very interested in the river otters

we had so much fun!

all tuckered out!  looking at animals is hard work!

ELEVEN months!  There aren’t many pictures of this little guy sitting still anymore!

He LOVES bath time!  Such a sweet way to end our evenings.

Sweet Aedan & Parker sitting together in church a few weeks ago.  I can only imagine the trouble these 2 will get into together!

Our little turkey in his adorable turkey shirt for Thanksgiving!

We went to Nana’s to take Parker’s birthday pictures a few weeks ago and he loved the pumpkins on the front porch!

We have had an absolute blast with our little guy over the last few months.  He is going to school everyday at Wesley Academy and I feel like he has learned so much just since September.  He is walking, and actually took his first steps at our friends, the Blackburn’s house the night we carved pumpkins!  He is so much fun these days and every day is a new day!

We are so thankful for our little turkey and for the ways he has changed our lives and our relationship.  He is such a sweet and happy baby, for which we are extremely grateful.  We truly have much to be thankful for, especially this week, but always.

8 Months!

8 Months!

Parker turned 8 months on Sunday and I’m still wondering how that’s even possible.  It’s amazing how quickly time goes by.

This sweet smile & the laugh that accompanies it is just adorable!

Thankfully we don’t see this face very often!  He was very unhappy with the photo shoot.

This has been a big month!  We officially have a crawler and he’s FAST!  Hurry up, Mom…I’ve got places to go!

He’s also found the stairs and seems determined to master them.  He does pretty good, as long as he remembers to hold on ;).  We do want him to learn how to go up and down safely, but we will definitely be investing in baby gates very soon.

He’s also pulling up on the furniture, our legs, in his bed, basically anything he can.  The only problem is that he forgets he still has to hold on and just lets go and if we aren’t close enough, tumbles to the ground.  It doesn’t seem to phase him though, as he just gets right back up and pulls up again.  Matt and I both walked around 9 or 10 months, so it won’t surprise me to see him walking early.

He loves to pull up against the back cushions of the couch to look out the window into the back yard and play with the blinds.

The last time we weighed him, he was 21.5 lbs, so obviously he’s still eating like a champ!  Probably the only thing that he really doesn’t like is broccoli…and oddly enough, he doesn’t seem to like Puffs…at all.  He makes an awful face when he eats them and I’m  not sure if its the flavor, or the texture…we’ll keep trying.  We’ve started him on meats in the last few weeks and he LOVES it.  He’s had chicken and turkey and always polishes off the whole jar ;).  He also LOVES to eat pieces of fruit while we’re eating supper.  He’s had watermelon, apples, cantaloupe, and bananas.  We’re going on the assumption that his milk protein allergy still exists, so he’s still drinking Neocate, the hypo-allergenic formula (aka, Liquid Gold), but at 9 months we’re planning to try either Nutramigen or Alimentum, which are both still hypo-allergenic, but the milk proteins aren’t broken down to the extent that they are in Neocate.  We’ll see how he responds…but it would be wonderful to not have to order Neocate and spend an arm & a leg every month!

We’ve lowered his mattress down to the lowest setting since he seems quite determined to stand up on anything.  It’s sad because it doesn’t look like a baby’s bed anymore, but I know its the safest thing for him…I just have to get over the fact that it looks like a cage…haha.

Still only 2 teeth on the bottom, but I think one of the top one’s might be coming in soon…he’s been fussier than normal for the last few days and not sleeping super well, so the teething tablets have been our friend!

My sweet boy and me on his 8 month birthday!

Parker, we love you so much!  The last 8 months have been such an exciting journey for our family and we can’t wait to see what the future holds for you and for us.  Thank you for bringing so much joy to our lives and showing us just how precious time is.

 

Parker’s 1st Trip to the Ranch

Parker’s 1st Trip to the Ranch

Brad & Monica are always so generous and let us spend time in the beautiful hill country at the ranch.  It’s always so nice to get away from the busy-ness of the city and life in general and be surrounded by nothing but a beautiful landscape, beautiful animals,sunsets, stars, and just the sounds of nature.  Summer trips to the ranch are especially relaxing since we get to take ranger & 4wheeler rides in the morning before it gets hot and then spend most of the rest of the day in the pool.

the day before we left…we talked about vacation all day…he was very excited ;)

in the car on the way to the ranch…no longer excited about vacation…thankfully, he fell asleep shortly after this picture and was much happier when he woke up!

We’re here!  On the ranch road headed up to the house!

LOVE those ranch sunsets!

view from the front porch of the house one evening

how could you not love it here?

it rained most of the day Sunday while we were there and that evening we saw a gorgeous rainbow

Another great thing about the ranch…SINK BATHS for Parker-man!

We also got a chance to take some new family pictures…it’s a rare event that all 8 of us are together, so we had to take advantage!

Such a great vacation…wish it could have lasted longer!

7 Months

7 Months

I figure I better get this done even though it’s late.  We’ve been having so much fun that I haven’t really had a lot of time to sit down and blog.  We spent your 7 month birthday playing at home and then went shopping for a new washing machine after daddy got home that evening.  Our old washer had been having some issues and after a bolt of lightening struck very close to our house, it completely fried the washer (it was running when the lightening hit).  Oh well…the new one is much better!

Parker, you are just adorable.  I kiss your cheeks at least a million times a day and that smile just completely makes me melt.  You’ve started kissing us back over the last few weeks and its just the sweetest thing!  You bring so much joy to our family and we can’t wait to see what these next months and years hold for you!  We love you, Parker James!