Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Company for Christmas


My sister, Traci, and her family are here visiting for Christmas. My neice, Averi, and Jack decided to "share" a blanket (even though neither wanted to move his/her seat on the couch) and relax while watching some good ol' Curious George. Meanwhile, the rest of us prepared to put the babies to bed. Can you tell Rick is enjoying the chaos?

Sweet Li'l Carpenters



While Mom and Dad Christmas shopped, Baylee came over for the day to entertain Jack and Sam. Together, Jack and Baylee constructed this house from panels of gingerbread, tubs of frosting, and packages of candy. With a little help from Uncle Chad, our sweet, little carpenters built this house from the plate up. Didn't they do a great job?

Special Delivery


Jack has so enjoyed all the packages arriving at our door this past week! UPS, FedEx, and the mailman all delivered boxes of fun to us. The colorfully-wrapped gifts inside are exciting, but their contents are still a mystery. However, the boxes, packing peanuts and bubble wrap provided instant fodder for mischievous play. Rick and I both cleaned up this entire box of peanuts--twice!

Christmas Kiss




Rick and I held a mini-photo shoot trying to get a good picture for our Christmas card. After a lot of sweat and a few tears (thank God, no blood!), we did end up with a few good shots. The bottom photo of Sam is so sweet with his face lit up with lights. The middle photo is fairly representative of the bulk of our session. Finally, the top photo was the winner--we love how it so accurately portrays how Sam kisses!




Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Letter Crazy



video


Soon after Sam was born, my mom came to visit. We were shopping for a double stroller when she asked me if she could buy a gift for Sam. We saw these beautiful painted canvas monogram sets at a little baby boutique, and I told her that would be a great gift. We were able to have them custom-made with his initials and the colors of his room. They didn't arrive until after she had gone, but they really look great above his crib. In fact, we've come to realize that Sam appreciates them the most. Check out his maniacal behavior and laughter at the mere sight of these wall hangings. This happens EVERY time he catches sight of them.

Sappy Story


Last weekend, I caught Sam as he was crawling by and noticed he had something in his hair. When I went to pull it out, my fingers stuck--pine sap! It just so happens that Sam is the perfect height (while crawling) for his hair to skim the bottom of the Christmas tree. The pine-scented super glue helped define the trendy, little mohawk spike Sam is currently sporting, but it quickly hardened into somewhat of a hazard for the rest of us, who love kissing the top of his head. I had no idea what gets sap out of hair. Fortunately, I didn't have to stress out about the possibility of cutting off his spike because Rick gave Sam a good bath and gently scrubbed until all that sap dissolved.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Christmas Tree Hunting


In lieu of our annual trip to the mountains for our Christmas tree, we chose to make things a little easier on all of us by stopping a little short...at the foothills. This year, we cut our trip in half by visiting a tree farm in Lincolnton--an easy one hour and ten minute drive. Jack chose his own tree very quickly and helped Rick cut it down. Sam enjoyed playing with the pine needles. Rick and I were a little less decisive, but we finally agreed on a 9 ft. tree for our entry way. Lucky for us, Santa and Mrs. Claus were visiting the tree farm. Jack introduced himself to Santa, "My name is Jack Colewox," and told him he wanted a scooter for Christmas. We hovered over cups of hot chocolate while the trees were secured to the roof of the Tahoe. Jack sipped his "coffee," and Sam took a nap on the way home.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Thanksgiving Traditions








We hosted Thanksgiving dinner for Rick's parents and Rick's sister and her family (including her in-laws). We ended up serving dinner for ten; fortunately, they all brought food and helped clean up! We have a couple of Thanksgiving traditions. The first is our tablecloth. Every year, everyone who sits at our table writes down what he or she is thankful for on the tablecloth in permanent marker. We have done this for three consecutive years now, and it is a lot of fun reading about how God has blessed us in the past and then adding our new thoughts. The second tradition is decorating Christmas cookies! Jack really enjoyed decorating (and eating) the cookies. Even Sam enjoyed some frosting after a quick grab yielded sweet success when I wasn't paying attention (top picture). Once they are all frosted and sprinkled, each family takes home a plateful. For me, these traditions make it feel like Thanksgiving--even if some of the people I love aren't there each and every year.


Going to the Chapel...





My baby brother got married! Randy and Stacey tied the knot on November 22nd, and we felt so blessed to witness their marriage ceremony. Rick and I were able to leave the kids at home with help from friends, neighbors, and family (thank you, all!). On Friday, we enjoyed the rehearsal dinner (maybe a little too much, as evidenced by the bottom photo) and reuniting with family.
My sister Traci and I joined Stacey and her sisters/friends for a late showing of Twilight (ahhhhh, Edward Cullen!) afterward. Saturday morning, Rick and I woke up around 9:30 (!!!), and decided to go out for breakfast (!!!). Sorry for all the exclamation points, but if you have a toddler and a baby, you know how exciting all these things really are;)
The wedding was great, the reception--complete with a mariachi band--was delightful. Afterward we headed to see some friends and stayed at their house overnight. Again, we woke up around 9 a.m. (!!!), and decided to go out for breakfast (!!!), before driving to the airport and heading home.
The real bonus? Everybody was pretty disappointed we didn't bring the boys, so now we have several visitors lined up for the next couple months! Congrats, Randy & Stacey Goetz!

Friday, November 28, 2008

Lincoln Loggers


Rick and Jack spend a lot of time in Jack's room making elaborate Lincoln log houses and tunnels, and Sam enjoys wasting no time knocking them down!


Cute picture


This post serves no other purpose than to show off a cute picture of Rick and Sam...well, it makes me happy, too.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Bad Hair Day




These pictures actually are in reverse order. Starting at the bottom, Jackson with his wild, post-nap hair, poses with my good friend and hair stylist, Mistie. We beg her to do something--anything!--to tame his crazy head. She sprays "rain" over the madness, and begins to snip, snip, snip! Ah, the reward at the end: for Jackson--a sugary treat, for Momma--a tame coiffure.


Thursday, November 13, 2008

Momma's Weekend Away




Thirty two months. That's how long I've been a mom. Recently, I took a 24-hour trip to the mountains (Blowing Rock, NC) with my friend and neighbor, Caele, for a wedding. Caele is also a mom to two boys (3 yrs. and 8 mos. old). We stayed at the inn where the wedding was held, and it was absolutely gorgeous with the trees at peak color. Although the outdoor ceremony was a tad chilly and very windy, I couldn't have imagined a more beautiful setting. Caele and I enjoyed our first-ever day away from our children with good food, good company, lots of dancing, and maybe a glass of wine (or two) thrown in there. We returned to our families (who survived!) rested and rejuvenated. And we've decided to celebrate our friends' anniversary every year with additional girls-only retreats to the mountains. Can't wait until next year!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Photo Op







Really, I was not trying to torture my son, but the leaves and flowers in the backyard were gorgeous, and I had to get some pictures of the boys back there before everything turns brown. Unfortunately for li'l Sam Cash, it was too close to naptime. He actually was quite happy (as evidenced by the first picture) throughout the photo shoot; the sour face and tears came on full force every time I set him down. Rick says he has the "Goetz temper." I don't know what he's talking about.



Jack in a Box

This is one of the two "ball baskets" we have (ahhh, life with boys!). Jack found out that his scrawny little body fits perfectly in this one, and he was quite proud of himself--even though he needed some assistance getting out:)

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Chris & Jill visit











Our good friends, Chris and Jill, came to visit the week of Halloween. The guys did a lot of biking, and we girls got a day out to the spa and shopping. On Halloween, we took the kids to our neighborhood "Spooktacular," and then came back home to put Sam to bed (he was a tired little cow). We enjoyed hot chili and a bonfire on our neighbors' driveway, and the kids went trick-or-treating. We had a great time with our friends, and Jack is still asking "Where's Jill?"

Indian Summer


We've had some really nice days in October--and even November. Nice enough to enjoy the sunshine in t-shirts and play in the pool (without water), which is what the kids were doing when I snapped this photo.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Jack-isms


Some fun and funny things Jack is known to say:
*Feed bump, fider web (remember frinklers? He may have a feech impediment:)

*When Dad gets home, I'm going to give him a hug and a mooch.

*Whatcha doin'? (this question most commonly gets asked when you have food he wants)

*Nudie! Nudie! Nudie! (as he runs through the house naked)

*Wanna see it? (he asks this with pride in his voice after he poos)

*Sam, it's okay. Jack's here. (when Sam gets upset)

*I'm awake in the morning (to let you know he's not tired--no matter what time of day it is)

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Military Man

Sam is doing the army crawl all over our house. He started a couple of days ago, and since then he has figured out the following:
*It is fun to pull out all the DVD cases from the video tower
*Electrical cords are great to chew on (!)
*He can reach Jack's toys and they are very interesting (much to Jack's dismay)
*If someone leaves it on the floor--it's fair game
*Pulling on curtains is fascinating


video

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Rub-a-dub-dub


Bubble baths will never be the same...
Everyone knows that if you put bubble bath in your bath water, well that's just fun. But, what if you put bubble bath in, and then turn on the jets? This is your answer.

Pumpkin Hunting





Recently, we took the boys to meet Rick's parents ("Nanee" and Papa) and some friends at a local pumpkin farm. While there, we took a hayride to a little barn with a petting zoo. Jack got to feed and pet some of the farm animals. He chased a turkey into a field (you can barely see the turkey on the right side of the picture with Jack in front of a barn), and got a little too close to a cow with an attitude--who quickly let him know she wasn't in the mood. Once Rick had sanitized AND washed Jack's hands with soap and water, we jumped back on the wagon to return to the pumpkin fields. The boys loved sitting on the retired tractors that sat amid the gourds of all sizes. Jack chose our pumpkins (with Rick's help), and Sam gummed a few stems--yuck!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Oktoberfest in the 'Wood


Our neighborhood holds this Oktoberfest party every year on our ball field, and it is always so much fun! We enjoyed great weather, food, bouncehouses, games, and our neighbors.

Race for Isabella



Jack, Sam and I enjoyed a fun morning walking/running a 5K race for a little girl named Isabella who is fighting a rare form of childhood cancer called neuroblastoma. We left Rick at home (still lame with his sore club, um...I mean foot). We walked most of the race, which was run at a local business park, but when Jack saw the Merrill Lynch bronze bull statues, he asked, "Mommy, may I play on the dinosaurs?" There were three of these huge statues in a large grassy area, and I have to admit--it did look like fun! Sam was sleeping away in his seat, so we stopped--mid-race--to play on the bulls. Then, we had to run to catch up to everyone. It was a great workout for a good cause, and who was there to meet us at the finish line? The Chik-fil-a cow, whom Jack thought was very cool.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

The Little Drummer Boy

I noticed that Jack was playing the drums with extra flair one day. To end each little drum solo, he'd raise one drumstick up into the air, and--in true rock-star style--turn his head to look up at it for several seconds. It was very dramatic and, because he was so serious, very cute. In this video, he decides to sing the ABC's, stop mid-way and tell us what he's singing (in case we were wondering), and start again. Check out the rockin' finish.
video

Monday, October 6, 2008

Jack meets Barney



I read in the paper that Barney would be at the mall, and Rick needed some new shirts and ties anyway, so away we went. While Rick shopped, the boys and I headed toward center court--there was Barney! And there was the line to meet him! Ugh! The good news was we were in line BEFORE it started forming out the door. The bad news? We waited 45 minutes to see him, and as we were pressed up against the velvet ropes--finally! We were next--awaiting our opportunity, a representative announced that Barney would be taking a small break. I panicked and pulled the "But I have two small children who need lunch and naps, couldn't Barney take one more picture? Take-pity-on-us, please" card...to no avail. Off Barney went to his little PVC pipe and tarp tent. So, this was the breakdown: 45-10-45

Waiting in line for Barney: 45 minutes

Faces against velvet rope while Barney took break: 10 minutes

Brush with fame, eternalized by photo: 45 seconds

Sam's 6-month check-up


Poor Sam! It just so happened that Sam's nap and his appointment were at the same time this morning. Of course, it had to be a busy day at the doctor's office just to torture the little guy even more.

He actually did pretty well until the nurse got a little too close for comfort, and he started making strange. I was trying to convince him that getting weighed and measured would be the highlight of his visit, but he wasn't hearing that (over his screaming). While we were waiting for the doctor, he tore up the paper on the bed, which was great fun for him. So, he was all smiles for Dr. Wrinkle...until he got a little too close for comfort. More screaming.

To round out the morning, he got two shots (new levels of screaming). An hour past naptime, we headed home (a 3-minute commute, seriously), and when I went to get him out of his carseat he was fast asleep. Here are the stats for my big, six-month-old:
Height: 28" (90th %)--yikes! Up from 50th % at 4-month visit

Weight: 16 lbs., 14 oz. (50th %)

Noggin: still 10th %

Special Skills and Interests:
*spins in circles on his belly
*scoots backward
*can catch himself with his hand if he starts to fall from sitting up
*master drooler and bubble blower
*can stand and play against a table or couch
*rocks on all fours (thinks about crawling)
*cracks up if Jack tackles him (picture above)
*enjoys playing in Jack's bed with him
*sleeps 11-12 hours at night and 3-4 hours during the day (in three naps)