Wednesday, December 17, 2008

It's hard to get a lot of things done...

When you have THIS GUY to distract you every few minutes.

(Climbing on the table, climbing on EVERYTHING = trouble!)

I am reevaluating what I need to do before Christmas - it's kinda scary. Only 8 days left! I just might be a crazed Christmas Eve shopper this year.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Just Like Dad

Lincoln loves to do anything that Ryan is doing. They have been little buddies right from the start. Lincoln learned how to do push-ups just by watching Ryan one day - we never told him "Get down and try to push yourself up" or encouraged him to try - he just saw dad and wanted to do it.

The other day he saw Ryan putting a belt on for work and Link of course wanted HIS belt on - right then! I didn't get a picture, but imagine a little braided belt fastened over footie pj's.

Link LOVES to brush his teeth since he was very little. (His great-grandma who was a dental hygienist should be very proud) He had his first 2 teeth by the time he was 5 months old, so I guess he had to start early! He currently has 2 different toothbrushes that he uses - an Elmo toothbrush, and one that looks like a fire truck. Of course, if daddy is brushing his teeth it must be time for Link to brush his teeth too!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Thanksgiving Week Re-cap

- Gram Leanne, Grandpa Pete (Ryan's parents) flew in the night before from California to spend the week with us
- We went to Liberty Science Center and Lincoln especially enjoyed the "I Explore" kids area and the animal exhibits

- Day began at 530am to get out to the Macy's Parade in NYC
- Staked out front-row spot by 7am; then waited in the FREEZING COLD until the parade came by at 930am. (Note: this is near impossible with a toddler - not recommended!!)
- That said, the parade was AMAZING and well worth it!

Of course, we couldn't wait to see Santa!

- After being completely exhausted from the parade activities, we decided to postpone Thanksgiving dinner until Friday; which was a great idea! The meal was DELICIOUS and a real group effort - down to "watching Lincoln duty" (mainly Ryan's job), which was probably the most difficult of all!

- Back to NYC for fun at Hershey's, M&Ms Store, Rockefeller Center, Disney Store, and FAO Schwartz.

New York with all the hustle and bustle, Christmas decorations, and window displays is something everyone should experience at least once. It's magical.

We hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving!!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Gearing up for Thanksgiving

I am cooking Thanksgiving dinner this year - but I'm not too worried; I cooked last year and everything worked out pretty well. The turkey wasn't raw and everything came together nicely. This year I do have the added pressure of impressing my in-laws, but they are pretty easy to please and have already offered lots of help. No problem!

Link and I decided to do a cooking-warm-up of sorts in preparation for the big cooking day Thursday. We made pumpkin chocolate chip cookies (big thanks to my sister-in-law Suze for the recipe!) and they are oh-so yummy!

Lincoln loves to help in the kitchen, especially when licking a beater is involved. Before I even mixed up the dough he kept pointing to the beater and then pointing to his tongue. I guess that is sign language for "Mom! I want to lick that, NOW!" haha

A little messy??!
(also note Lincoln's cute little slippers that I found at Wal-Mart for $5 - gotta love Wal-Mart!)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

When Mom has to say sorry

Today as I was getting ready in the bathroom I heard Lincoln banging something loudly in the other room. I was blow-drying my hair and it was much louder than the dryer, so I finally went out to check what it was. Link had taken our Rock Band drumsticks and was drumming furiously on the TV stand. I yelled at him to stop and grabbed the drumsticks away - while Lincoln looked bewildered. It was only then that I looked at the TV - Sesame Street was on and Oscar the Grouch was drumming with a friend on some garbage cans. For all I know he probably said "Hey kids, you try drumming at home too!" I felt I needed to apologize to my sweet son for just trying to imitate Oscar, and actually finding the right tools for drumming! Sometimes moms make mistakes too.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Library Photo Shoot

I wanted to take some fall pictures of Lincoln, so I thought outside the Weehawken Public Library would be a good spot. The outside is stone and looks like a castle - I heard someone once call it "The Harry Potter Library". Here's what I got:

Inside the library - there is a little stage with a "talking" tree for storytime

Link saying "Cheese!!"

Fed up with the picture-taking?

I know I am a little biased, but I think he is such a handsome boy!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

My Little Personal Shopper

I don't know how you moms with more than one child do it - how can you go shopping without going completely insane? As Lincoln gets older and more mobile, I am quickly realizing that shopping is the most arduous task there is. Gone are the days of lazily strolling down aisles of clothes or taking a long list to Wal-Mart. I make my list, get a game plan ready, and then zoom through the store as quickly as possible while trying to keep Link from standing up in the cart, crying too much, or opening all my purchases before they are paid for. I have to be equipped with candy, toys, and impulse-buys to keep this little guy happy.

Here's a recent story to illustrate my point:

Last week while grocery shopping, Lincoln had already had it with the trip about 2 minutes after walking into the store. I was in the produce department and needed to buy some apples, which Link was very excited about since he likes apples now and thinks they are balls to throw. He wanted to help me by putting the apples into the plastic bag, which I let him do. Then he sat in his seat in the cart happily with the bag of apples, putting them in and out of the bag. "Great!" I thought, "This is going to keep him busy for a while; and I don't even need to break out the M&Ms yet!" A few aisles later I notice Lincoln started munching on one of the apples. Oh well, he was really enjoying it, and again, it's healthier than the M&M option in my bag - so I let him chew on the apple.

This is where I made the fatal mistake: NEVER leave a 19.5 month-old to his own devices with a bag of apples!

The next time I look at him, he is munching on another apple and then I see ALL the apples in the bag with little bite marks out of them! Ahhhh! I took all the apples away from him, paid, and got out of the store as quickly as possible.

It wasn't until after I told Ryan this story that he asked "Well, how did you expect to pay for an eaten apple? Aren't they sold by the pound?" Oops! I guess in my hopes to keep my son quiet I hadn't even considered the fact that I would have to pay by weight instead of just by item (like what usually happens with fishy crackers, fruit snacks, cookies, etc.). Luckily all the bites added up weren't that much apple, so I don't think I ripped off the store too badly. I probably should go back and give them a dollar or something...

Monday, November 3, 2008

Halloween Fun!

Lincoln had a fun 2nd Halloween. Here's a quick flashback to his 1st Halloween:

Do you think he has changed at all since then?!

We went to a parade that was held in Hoboken, NJ (the city just south of us). There were TONS of little kids there all decked out in their costumes. The "parade" consisted of about 2 middle school bands and a couple decorated cars - but the kids seemed to like it anyway. (Here are all the church kids that we met up with there)

Then all the little shops along the street where the parade was handed out candy to the trick-or-treaters. Getting the candy was definitely the highlight for Link. He especially loves lollipops...

And M&Ms

I dressed up as a "dog walker" (complete with leash and pooper-scooper bag [full of chocolate]) - which is an actual occupation here in NJ/NY, strangely enough!

We had a great Halloween and will be enjoying eating the candy for many, many weeks to come - thanks to my over-buying (again!) and having NO trick-or-treaters come to our door. :( I guess kids don't ring apartment buzzers to trick-or-treat here. Oh well!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Pumpkin Carving, PLUS Halloween Preview!

Last night we carved our big pumpkin (we are leaving Lincoln's small pumpkin uncarved so he can "play" with it some more).

Link was pretty excited about the prospect of getting his hands on the pumpkin...until we opened it up and told him to get the "guts" out. He kept wrenching his hand back out in fear (hey, I don't like it either - that's why it's Ryan's job to gut the pumpkin and my job to carve it) until we gave him a spoon to scoop it out. He liked that idea much better.

We had a trial run of Lincoln's Halloween costume! He is going to be a puppy. I have been working with him on "What does a dog say?" and finally got him to make a panting noise. "Bow wow" and "ruff ruff" are apparently too complex (although he does the best monkey noise I have ever heard).

Here he is complete with his bear in a matching costume and treat-bag to match (courtesy of Pottery Barn Kids, aka: Nana!)

More pictures of our upcoming Halloween festivities soon to come!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Pumpkin Patch Pickin'

Despite New Jersey being the most urban state in the Union - it's the only state that has every one of its counties deemed "urban" (thanks, Wikipedia!)- we were still able to find a great pumpkin patch out in the little town of Fairfield, NJ. Lincoln really loves pumpkins, so he was excited to see all of his options!

They had these cute little wagons that we took into the field to load up our pumpkins. Link got right to work picking out his pumpkin(s)!

Maybe he got a little carried away!? (He eventually had to choose only ONE to take home)

The Giles Pumpkin Patch Pickers! (My parents were also there - thanks to an extended layover from Ireland. Fun to have Nana and Grandpa here!)

Monday, October 20, 2008

More Beach Pictures

Lincoln loves the sand!

The bathtub was full of sand after this beach outing:

We went to a turtle rehabilitation center, where people can drop off hatchlings that wash up on the beach. They nurse them back to health here and then release them back into the ocean. Lincoln said "turtle" for the first time! There was also a small playground with a "tur-tle" that Link liked to sit on:

Monday, October 13, 2008

We're Back!

We had an amazing vacation in West Palm Beach, Florida last week. Ryan was able to take a whole week off work and we went to the beach to RELAX! It really was one of the most stress-free vacations we have ever been on - just going to the beach and the pool, watching movies, eating out, playing with Link, and spending time together as a family. Life really doesn't get any better than that!

We have so many great pictures of the beach that I have to split them up into separate posts - so here are the first few to pique your interest!

Link was a little leery of the ocean at first, then got over his fear and was lying down on the sand waiting for the water to wash over him, but then went back to being semi-afraid.

He did really enjoy digging and playing in the sand, and yes, did get a couple mouthfuls in.

Our happy family at the beach:

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Funny Quirks and Embarrassing Moments

Lincoln has this funny thing he does. He likes to put small objects into tight spaces. We first realized this when he would take a bunch of fake credit cards and slide them ever-so-carefully into the tiny crack between cupboards. I have had many occasions where I open the cupboards in the kitchen, and a bunch of credit cards spill out. He likes to put them at a time...just right...and then wait to hear the "plunk" that it has fallen to the bottom of the cupboard before putting in the next one. Silly boy.

Link just got 3 "choo choos" - little wooden 'Thomas and Friends' trains.

He LOVES them! (I can definitely see what an obsession these trains can be - there are probably hundreds of trains, sets, tracks, people, etc. We are trying not to get roped in by it all - well, not yet at least.) He rolls them along the floor and the furniture saying "choo choo, choo choo" over and over. He takes them everywhere we go. He even tried to "feed" one of them his oatmeal one morning when I neglected to think that giving an 18 month old toys and food at the same time would be a bad idea.

Well, the other day the choo choos went missing. Not just one, but all three. Ryan and I looked all over the house for those things - in drawers, under couches, behind pillows - but they were nowhere to be found! I was getting worried thinking about Lincoln's reaction to not having his "choo choos". So I had to think "If I were Link, where would I put the choo choos?" Thinking about the "small things in tight spaces" quirk I finally looked behind the small space between the TV stand and the wall, and sure enough, this is what I found:

Lincoln found just the 'perfect' spot that the trains would squeeze into, and put them all there together.

On to the embarrassing moment:
This last weekend we had dinner at Chili's. This is actually a rare treat because where we live is so urban that we usually go to little restaurants or order out; so a "chain restaurant" is considered fancy to us. We were enjoying our meal in a comfy booth with Lincoln in a high chair at the end of the table. We were just finishing up dessert

(molten chocolate cake - yum!) and Ryan was paying the bill. A waitress was taking the couple's order at the booth across from us - standing just behind Lincoln's high chair. Let's just say this waitress had, um, a rather large rear end and tight jeans on. Then we see Link turn around in his chair and with a big grin on his face give the waitress a few pats on her bottom! He saw another couple at a different table watching and laughing, so he decided to do it again! It wasn't until the third time that the waitress finally turned around to see what was going on. Needless to say, WE were embarrassed, but Link thought it was just funny! Oh dear.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Mail Call!

Everyone likes to get a package in the mail, right? Well, Link is no exception! His Nana sent him a very fun "tractor" themed package - complete with 2 tractor books and lots of John Deere fruit snacks - two of Lincoln's favorite things! He was so excited to open the package, that he showered himself with the contents!

(This picture is NOT posed! Lincoln is naturally very silly and quite a ham for his audience)

He then proceeded to try and eat every package of fruit snacks ("treats" as Link calls them).

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Figuring out the New Camera

Ryan gave me a cute new camera for my birthday. It's little, it's light, and most importantly, it's pink!

It has taken me a while to figure out all the functions and how to upload my pictures to the computer - luckily, I have Lincoln to help me out.

He got a little frustrated at the computer too.

Yep, he is 18 months old and already knows how to use a mouse. Kids these days...

Doesn't he look like such a big boy?!