Thursday, February 24, 2011

7 months!

As each month passes, I can't believe that our little blonde-headed boy is getting older and older.  He's watching and learning from Payton and me, and starting to copy things that we do.  When we talk to each other, you see Eli watching our mouths, trying to figure out how we do it.  I was laying in bed with him the other morning and started shaking my head and saying "no", and he watched me intently for a few seconds, giggled, then started shaking his head back and forth.  Little milestones like that are so much fun! 

At 7 months old, Eli is a true joy!  He is such a trooper, and will find fun wherever he is, whatever he is doing.  We can drag him to the grocery store and he'll flirt with the women and pull things off of the shelves if he gets close enough (so far, nothing breakable).  He sits with me while I open the mail and chews on the paper. 

This past Sunday, after Payton and Pawpaw finished our new fence, we set up a blanket in the backyard and planted watermelon and sunflower seeds in little pots.  Once they start to bloom, we'll plant them in the backyard and hopefully have some watermelons this summer.  Eli sat on the blanket and watched so intently at every move I made. 

He's eating like such a big boy now, 2 solid meals a day and 3 bottles a day (lunch, afternoon, bedtime).  He's mastered the sippy cup,   He's eating puffs and picking them up all by himself. 

His 4th tooth has finally broken through, and this one was a doozy!  This 2nd top one has been the roughest on him - and us.  He's had a runny nose and has been fussy for the past week or so.  We were so glad to see it finally break through yesterday, so hopefully no more pain.

His size has stabilized, meaning he's been in 18 - 24 month clothing for over a month now.  His little socks are so tight around his ankles and calves.  I have to pull them all the way up to his knees because they're way too tight if I fold them over. 

He's right on the edge of thinking about crawling.  Lately when we put him on his stomach, he pushes himself up so high.  Then he'll lay down flat and pull his knees up underneath him.  Now if he could just do both at the same time...

He Loves...
  • Bathtime.  He sits in the corner of the tub and pulls out ALL of his toys.  He bangs his cups on the side of the tub or together, and he chews on the foam letters (sometimes he'll do both at the same time).  He loves trying to catch the water as it comes out of the faucet and watching Maddie try to eat the water when he splashes. 
  • Taking walks and eating snacks off of his tray. 
  • Eating, unless it's time for a nap.  He's up to 2 solid meals and 3 bottles a day. 
  • His sippy cup!  He tilts his head all the way back - I'm pretty sure this is the only time that we see under his neck all day.  He doesn't breath while he's drinking, so when he can't hold his breath anymore, he whips the cup out, slams it on his highchair tray (or drops it off the side), and lets out a huge sigh, like "Whew, that was some good water", as a good portion of it dribbles out of his mouth. 
  • His puffs.  If he is whining or crying, just throw a few puffs in front of him and he'll be entertained as he focuses on picking them up and getting them in his mouth.
  • Watching Payton and I talk to each other.
  • Any toy that makes noise.
  • Any toy (or anyTHING for that matter) that he can put in his mouth.
  • Petting on Cooper and Maddie and watching how they react.
  • Sitting up.
  • Swinging in his new swing.
  • Watching me sing and dance and make a fool out of myself (Payton enjoys this too).
  • And he especially loves his grandparents.  There is something about those silly grandparents that will distract him from teething, being ready for a nap or a meal, and just about anything else.  He loves the silly faces Nonna makes, and listening to Papa D talk on the computer when we Skype.  He loves listening to Meme talk and laugh, and to Pawpaw as he tickles all over him. 

He Hates...
  • When I try to clean the boogies out of his nose.  I hate it too, but it's got to be done.  I refuse to have my child be labeled the "snot nose kid".  We all remember that kid growing up, and Eli will NOT be that kid!
  • Having Orajel put on his gums.  He clamps his mouth shut, it's pitiful, but it helps so much when I finally get my finger in there. 
  • Laying down in the tub to have his hair rinsed off.  He makes it look so akward, I swear, if he would just relax, he would really enjoy it.  He does this painful looking crunch thing like he's trying to sit up, both those abs have got nothing on that 24 lb frame of his.  He's recently started rolling over, which is entertaining, especially when he realizes he's rolling over into water.
  • Getting strapped into his carseat.  But as soon as I point out his reflection in the mirror, he smiles that toothy smile and giggles at himself.  I'll never forget that his first "social" smile was at his reflection in the mirror.

Payton and I love this little boy to death and look forward to the next few milestones, more solid foods, crawling, and lots more!

Note:  When Payton put him in bed, his head was
at the other end, he was covered by his blanket, had
his pacifier in this mouth and his lovey under his left arm. 

Planting seeds with Mommy

"Dude, I told you not to send those
emails to my mom's computer!"

Enjoying the new backyard!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Love this!

My mom just sent me this picture that she took of Eli when we skyped with them on Valentine's day.  I couldn't resist posting it!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

More adventures in eating...

We have been thoroughly entertained by Eli for the past few hours as he had his first few tastes of solid food in the form of some puffed baby food things.  They dissolve on baby's tongues and are a great start to real finger foods.

I had some hesitation on starting him out this early on them (the package says it's for "crawlers" but he's almost there, so what the heck?), but his daytime caretaker said that these would be great to start him on to see how he reacts to the new texture.  True to Eli fashion, there were no problems!

Here is a video of him snacking on them after his beef, squash, and rice cereal dinner.

Wedding weekend...

We celebrated the wedding of a dear friend of ours, Mark and Angela.  While the day was pretty foggy and misty, it was a beautiful drive out to Chapel Dulcinea and a beautiful view from the chapel and the grounds  of the "Wizard Academy".  We enjoyed spending time with Mark and his family, and celebrating their special day.  Eli was such a good boy, all day long!  He did decide to start talking during the very intimate ceremony, but it was nothing a little pacifier couldn't stop.  We were so honored to be included in their special day and wish them many years of happiness!

The open air chapel, it was beautiful!

The foggy view, hoping we can make it out there 
when the weather gets nicer.

Family picture after the sun came out.

At dinner at one of our favorite restaurants in Austin, Chez Zee.
There was a table of girls that Eli would not stop staring at.  They loved him!

When a restaurant has no changing table, you have to improvise!

Mark and Angela, congrats!


I have been searching for this dang swing for months.  I tried to get it for Eli for Christmas, and that's a whole other story (imagine Christmas Eve at Toy's R 'Us, waiting in lines, being told they had it, paying for it, just to find out they don't have it, more lines to get it credited back to my card, leaving store after almost an hour with no $25 swing).  They have been sold out since Christmas and finally got a shipment in this past week.  I wasn't sure if he was old enough to swing in it (the package says 9+ months) but since we have a monster-sized baby who wears 24 month clothing, I figured it was worth a try.

Close up!

He absolutely loves it.  He smiles and giggles when you push him in it and tries with all of his might to chew on the straps and ropes holding the swing up.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Another toof!

Payton was getting Eli all ready for bed noticed another tooth, one of the top ones, just poking through.  We've been waiting for the tops ones to break through, they have been so close for weeks.  You could literally see the outline of them under his gums, and it is finally here.  He looks so precious with his two bottom teeth, I can't wait to see what the top ones look like.

Another milestone tonight...Payton was holding Eli in his room and I came in to put up some clothes and walked over to the two of them talking to Payton, and all of a sudden, Bug reached out for me and leaned forward.  He actually reached out for me, like he wanted me to take him.  Payton said it was a fluke, so we went back and forth a few times, each time holding our arms out to him while the other held him and each time he slowly leaned forward and reached out.  But just to be clear, he reached for me first!

Here are some pictures from bath time tonight:

Such a big boy in the bathtub.

Goofin' with Daddy after his bath.

Showing off his "old" teeth.

Cutest little booty ever!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Eli and Cooper

People have asked many times how our dogs are reacting to Eli.  Cooper and Maddie have really just pretended like he doesn't exist, and Eli has managed to do the same, up until the past few days.  Lately, Eli is distracted at each meal by watching the dogs from his highchair.  It's a job trying to get him to eat as he leans all the way to one side so that he can see around me and catch a glimpse of the dogs.

And now that he's sitting up, we spend a lot of time playing on the floor, and Cooper decided to come hang out with us this past weekend (pictures below).  I have a feeling that the dogs and Eli will have a love-hate relationship:  Eli will love having the dogs to tug and hit on, but hate it when they rush past him and knock him down or lick all over his face.  The dogs will love Eli when he drops food but hate it when he pulls on their ears and their tails.

Checking out Cooper who snuggled up to him.  
As soon as Eli showed interest, Cooper rolled over on to 
his back and stretched our real dramatically, like "Rub my belly".

Getting a pinch of fur.

Now smashing him with his toy.

And here's one final video of him playing with his puzzle...

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Balentine's Day!

We celebrated Eli's first Valentine's Day on Monday.  I know I was more excited than he was - who doesn't love celebrating love?  I think what I mean is who doesn't love an excuse to decorate, shop for candy, and give people gifts?  I got all of the kids at Melissa's house a little gift and bought some Toy Story Valentine's for Eli to give our friends and family.  I LOVED Valentine's Day when I was younger, decorating my box, putting together my Valentine's to give out to everyone, signing my name on all of them, and of course eating all of the candy.  Here are some pictures from Bug's first Valentine's day:

Sitting with all of his gifts for the ladies before heading to Melissa's
(guess who dressed him).

Sock Monkey!

Eating the card...

Look at that smile!

Pictures from my Valentine's growing up are always in bed.  I guess because it was 
first thing in the morning before we all went to work and school.  We did ours with 
Eli when he woke up from an end of the day nap.  Here we are on the bed, he's checking 
out his balloons...and no, I didn't forget my pants, I'm wearing a dress.

A book, a teddy bear, and a pop-up sock monkey, oh my!

And of course, the book goes right to his mouth!

I thought he would be scared of the pop-up monkey, but 
he could have cared less, he wanted to eat him instead.

And as a note, our first Valentine's day with a baby wasn't a bust, we met for lunch, Payton surprised me with a bottle of my favorite champagne when he got home, we ate dinner on the couch, shared a dessert, and we've got tickets to the Gipsy Kings at the ACL studios next week to celebrate Valentine's day again.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Yay Payton!

Okay, so I've bragged all over Facebook about how proud I am of my husband.  I think that he is truly an amazing designer and has done some really amazing stuff.  His work was honored at the 2011 Austin Addy's alongside some huge agencies here in Austin (GSD&M, McGarrah Jesse, MilkShake Media).   He won a silver Addy for a logo and branding he developed for a bar here in Austin (there wasn't a gold in his category, so we're/I'm saying he pretty much took the highest honors in his category).

Payton's pretty humble, and he won't boast about his accomplishments, but I'll just say it's a pretty big stinkin' deal.  His work was honored alongside some national ad campaigns for the US Air Force and BMW commercials.  Here is a link to the Winners Book, he's on page 23, under Nox Creative.

We decided to celebrate him all weekend and booked a room at the W Hotel (the Addy's were held at the new ACL studios connected to the W) for the night of the awards.  We attended with some friends while Payton's mom, Emily/Meme, stayed home with Eli.  It was a great night out with some good friends, honoring Payton.  I wouldn't have changed anything (aside from maybe my shoes, they were so uncomfortable).

Here are some pictures:

Payton's logo is on the top right.  And if you're ever 
in Austin, our should definitely stop by Kung Fu Saloon.
It's a cool concept and a great atmosphere...and they have Miss Pacman! 

Payton and I at the Addy's

Posing with the Addy.  That sucker was small, but weighed a ton!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Date Night!

Payton and I have two, count 'em, TWO, date nights this weekend!  And I am so excited to get to spend time just the two of us together, two nights in a row!

Friday night we're headed to dinner with two of my favorite people in the entire world, Payton's childhood friend Julie and her husband, Spencer.  We're celebrating his birthday with dinner at Romeo's, one of my favorite Italian restaurants in Austin. 

Saturday night, we're heading to the new W Hotel here in Austin to celebrate Payton's Addie award.  I'm so incredibly proud of my husband and I am so excited that he is being recognized by the Austin Ad Federation for his awesome work.  I may be a little biased because I'm his wife, but I think he's pretty dang talented.  Check out his Nox Creative site.  We're attending the event with some friends and staying the night at the W.  I went back and forth about the expense, since we could easily drive home that night and avoid the hotel cost, but my friend, Brandi, reminded me that if we have the chance to do it, we just have to do it.  So true!  I need to remind myself to invest more time in "us" (Payton and me).

A huge thanks to Payton's mom, Emily, Eli's Meme, for coming to Austin to watch him while we're out and about.  Hopefully Eli will behave...even if he doesn't, how could you not just love this guy?

Chewing on wipes at Santa Rita.
The woman who was cleaning the tables kept giggling at him
calling him a "famous baby" because of his sunglasses.

More talk...

Lately it seems like Eli hasn't been talking much.  He went through this period when he was talking all the time then it stopped as soon as it started.  I asked Melissa if he talks while he is at her house during the day and she said he babbles all day.  I couldn't believe it, but she says that the two other children talk and he tries to compete with them to get a word in (mind you, he's not speaking english, just some language that makes total sense to him and sounds a lot like dadajajajadada).

Tonight Payton was getting him in his pajamas and ready for bed and Eli just started talking talking talking.  I caught the clip below after they finished and came to get his bedtime bottle.  I just love the expressions that he makes as he is talking.  And notice, you can't see anything at the start of the clip, I have to keep the phone hidden because as soon as he sees it, he won't rest until he's grabbed it and shoved it in his mouth.

On a side note, we have totally gotten in a rhythm with Eli's sleeping habits.  For the past month or more, he has been sleeping from 7:30 - 7:00.  He might grunt around a little in the middle of the night but would always put himself back to sleep.  He has also been sleeping on his stomache, which he seemed to really like.  And like the last 6 months, as soon as we get in a habit, he changes something up.  He is now rolling over onto his side, then flipping onto his back, and instantly waking up crying.  He did this at least 5 times last night starting at 1:45am and he's already done it once tonight at it's barely 11.  I threw a "lovie" in with him tonight and a pacifier, which he can easily grab and put in his mouth, so hopefully he'll do his thing and fall back asleep if he wakes's hoping!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Working Mother

I have never really felt that "My head is going to explode" feeling until the past few weeks, and it has nothing to do with this precious baby that consumes all of my thoughts and time at home.  It's WORK! 

I have had a great transition back to work since I was on maternity leave, and rather than slacking off (which I thought would be the case returning after baby) my responsibilities have been multiplied by about 50.  The company I work for is going through a huge growth spurt and hiring like crazy.  At the executive planning meeting in January, our executives set our priorities for the year, and one of the top ones was recruiting.  I expressed an interest in Human Resources and recruiting when I first started almost 4 years ago, so I was approached to completely take over recruiting. 

I'm really flattered that they believe in me enough to put me in charge of one of our biggest initiatives for 2011.  I know 100% that I can see our company through this growth spurt, but because we have no processes and procedures in place for recruiting, I'm building everything from scratch.  My days are consumed by marking two steps off of my list, then adding 10 more when I realize that we've encountered a new part of the process that has no documentation or process.  Phew, lots of processes and procedures, but I'm loving it.

I'm way more efficient when I'm under pressure.  When I ask for a timeframe for our hires, I get the same response "We needed them yesterday", so I'm definitely under pressure on this one. 

So back to the head exploding, definitely feel like my head's going to explode, lots to do, no time to do it.  But the best part of my day, no matter how successful I am at work with my multiple lists, is when I see my boy at the end of the day and he gives me the biggest smile and wiggles until I scoop him up to take him home. 

Monday, February 7, 2011

Snow Day!

Well, we called it a snow day and stayed home from work, but I really think that we here in Austin were all fed up with everyone in Dallas getting off of work, so we had to take at least a day off.

It started snowing Thursday night, and everything was white by the time we got out of bed at 9.  Payton made a great snowman, and typical mom fashion, we were back inside as soon as possible.  I like the snow for about 5 seconds, yeah, fun, pretty, now let's get back in side.

The snow was all gone by noon and it was over 70 two days later.  Another "wintry mix" is set to arrive in a couple of days.  While I don't love the ever-changing weather, I do love the fact that we can have some fun snow days and t-shirt weather two days later.

Here are some pictures of Bug Boy in the snow.  He grabbed a handful of snow then started whining because it was so cold.  He had this shocked look on his face the whole time, not too sure about what to think about all of it (and all of the goofiness going on with mom and dad trying to get him to smile).


Snow balls!

Checking out the snowman Daddy made.

Uh oh!  His head fell off!