Wednesday, February 29, 2012

"I Show You"

On Saturday afternoon Declan and I were making zucchini bread. I wanted to talk to my mom about a few things so I had her on speaker phone as we baked. Declan was so excited that Mimi was on the phone. He immediately started in. "Mimi we make cupcakes" (anything made in the mixer these days is deemed "cupcakes" by Declan). Then he proceeded to take the phone off the counter, held it up over the mixer and said, "See, I show you". Of course I'm laughing hysterically explaining to my mom what he is doing. As Mimi continued to talk to Declan and ask him questions about his day, he told her that he saw airplanes with Daddy (they went to the Aerospace Museum earlier that morning). Again he busted out his "I show you" bit when he took the phone and held it up to his new airplane Daddy bought from the museum to show Mimi.  I'll tell you this little incident had me smiling for fact I'm still smiling about it. 
I don't have any pictures from it, but every post needs a pic, so here are some pictures of Declan playing hide and seek behind our palm tree in the back yard this weekend. Love that strawberry clad face!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Happy Highlights

It seems we've been spending a lot of time at parks lately. After we discovered how much Lexi loves to swing we had to bring Daddy and show him his giggling girl!
Declan loves to push his sister!
Declan has been trying out the big boy swing lately. I think he still prefers a bit more cushioning, but he'll always give the big one a go for a little while.

 Lucky we love the park! Last week we had two play dates there. Once to meet up with Katie and her new baby sister Lizzie. 
Declan and Lexi shared a cute moment on the swings, laughing hysterically at each other. Love these two.
Our fun park play date was followed by a stop for some yummy frozen yogurt! I'm crushing on Katie's polka dot pants! Too cute! No pictures of baby Lizzie because she was sleeping the whole time!
The next day we headed to a park with Logan and Jen. Jen and I had a little snap jam while the boys played. 
The boys kept racing each other down these slides. It was pretty cute. 
Lexi was stuck as our model, so she didn't get a lot of park time, poor girl. Jen took this picture of us, which I love!
We had a fun day at Legoland with Ella and Lily. As soon as we saw Lily, the two cousins held hands and walked around like they owned the place!
We immediately hit Declan's favorite guessed it! The airplane ride!
Ella and Lexi hung back from the boat ride with me. Poor Ella was feeling under the weather :(
On Friday we met up with Kylie and Micah for a little fun in the sun at Baby Beach. The boys took their sand castle building very seriously.

While Lexi and Kylie found the boogie board pretty intriguing.
(Jaimie took the following adorable pictures of the girls)

Before we left, the kids became quite infatuated with this little pup - even Lexi wanted to pet him!
 On Saturday we had a fun pizza night with the Klocks. Declan just loves Cassidy - I think it is that great hair. I noticed he kept tussling it. He does have a thing for hair and she definitely has a nice head of it!
 Yes, he is leaning in for a smooch!
The three kiddos ;)
We ended our week with the Abbotts  for appetizers and red carpet gawking. Unfortunately I did not see much of the Oscars as Declan was testing the limits (to put it nicely). Oh well, You win some, you lose some!

Friday, February 24, 2012

Growing Up

A few weeks ago something changed drastically in Declan. Both Adam and I commented to one another that all of a sudden he seemed so much older. The biggest change we saw in him was his communication. He went from simply labeling to actually conversing. I can't begin to describe how awesome this has been for us. It is so much fun listening to him and getting to know him. And, for the first time we are actually able to reason with him and give him choices:
  • Choices - The best example of this is at dinner time. If he puts up a fight to come to the dinner table we say "You can either sit down and eat dinner or have a time out. The choice is yours." Then we count to three, and by two he is on his way to the table! This little exercise is used often for so many different scenarios and for the time being it is working brilliantly! (I am completely aware that sooner or later he is going to test us with it). He's also teaching us a thing or two with our new form of communicating. At lunch the other day he was putting up a fight so I used the above described tactic to motivate him to come to the table. Well I guess he wasn't hungry, because he looked at me and said, "No Momma. Me no hungee. Time out." And put himself in the corner for a voluntary time out. Lesson learned! Sometimes I need to be a better listener!
  • Potty Training - Because our little man is beginning to communicate with us, we decided it was time to try out potting training. We started last week. Armed with our Bjorn potty, some potty treats (Starbursts), and our new book The Potty Train, we added a new step to our nightly routine. After dinner and before bath I encourage Declan to sit on his potty and read his Potty Train book. If he sits on the potty and reads his entire book then he gets a potty treat. If he goes potty, he gets two potty treats. The first night we tried this little exercise he sat on that potty for over ten minutes trying so hard for two potty treats. He kept getting up and looking in the potty to see if anything happened and was so disappointed when nothing was in the pot. So he would sit down and try again. Finally he got off and said "It's broken Momma". Melt me. So far we haven't made progress, but that's okay. I know he'll get his two treats when he is ready!

  • Boundaries - Another benefit of his increased comprehension is setting boundaries. When we play in the front yard I always ask him, "Where are your boundaries Declan?" and he shows me the two lines in the sidewalk that he is not supposed to go past. He loves these boundaries and always points them out to me - proud to show me he knows what's up. It makes front yard play so much more enjoyable not having to chase in all over creation!

  • Growth Spurt - He now measures 38"! Which is a tiny bit ironic in that on our Erin Condren growth chart it says that he  is as tall as the Lorax. Funny because that movie is out right now!

  •  The Phone - Most of my phone calls occur on the road because it is my best chance of actually completing a conversation. Lately Declan is very interested in being part of the conversation. Especially when I talk to Mimi and Daddy. Sometimes it is hard for me to get a word in edge wise as he describes every bridge, bus, plane, helicopter, train, truck, and hill we drive up or down. He is so excited to share his world!
  • Ready to Play - Every night when I put Declan to bed I describe what we are going to do the next day and who we are going to see. Now when he gets up in the morning he tells me or Adam what we are going to do. Sometimes I even hear him playing with his cars saying, "Legoland today" in a high pitched voice. It is so cute.
  • Some Things Never Change - Even though our little guy is showing signs of getting older, he is still the same Declan. The kid just wants to have a good time! Like when he jumps off our couch with his arms extended and says, "Flying Declan!"I never get tired of seeing that open mouthed, whole face smile that we have seen since he started laughing at 3 months old. 

In about a month Dec is turning 3 years old (gulp)! Adam and I are going to take him to Disneyland to celebrate. Because of spring break we are going early in the month of March. Since Declan doesn't know much about Disneyland, we made a chain countdown for him and put pictures of the Magic Kingdom on our refrigerator.  Truth be told, Adam and I are so excited to take him. We are like little kids. I don't think a day goes by that we don't mention it (multiple times) to Declan. The poor kid is probably sick of hearing about it!

Declan John, your Daddy and I feel so lucky to be your parents. You truly are a gift.

8/52 {growing up}

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Little Toy Trains

In case you haven't caught on by now, trains are a pretty prominent part of our life. The other day Jaimie told me about this place that had model trains you could ride. It is open to the public the third weekend of every month and is free. So on Sunday we headed off to do some exploring. As we were driving around Adam kept mentioning that we were really close to where he used to live. His family moved to Costa Mesa for one year when he was in about 5th grade. So we put our train adventure on pause for a minute to see if we could find his old house. Turns out it was pretty much right across the street from the trains! Kind of random and fun. Anywho, I digress. When we arrived at Goathill Junction I couldn't believe how cool it was...and that it was free. Of course Declan shared my enthusiasm!

Patiently waiting his turn
Lexi wasn't sure what all the excitement was about, but she joined in the fun anyway

Lexi and I rode the first train with the boys and then opted to wait out the second - one of us needed to nap and the other wanted to take pictures ;)

What a fun way to spend our Sunday! We found out that the trains have been running for about 25 they must have opened right after Adam's family moved back to SD. How funny!

7/52 {lovely in lace}

Love this one of Lexi in her pettiromper.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Ellie, Ella, Lola, Lily...

...and Lexi. Say that 5 times fast! 
On Friday we spent some quality time with all four of these lovely "L" girls! We spent the morning celebrating Ellie and Lola's 3rd birthday at Pump It Up. We had such a great time - especially Declan. I had to literally pull him away from the big slide when it was time to go.

The birthday girl (Ellie) and the polka-dot clad Lexi
Aidan, Declan, Ellie, and Lexi
Lexi hanging with the birthday girls
We finished off our fun Friday with pizza night with the Abbotts. On an unusual whim, we decided to throw the fantastic four into the bath. We added a couple of glow sticks, some purple bath die, and voila - 
rub-a-dub-dub, four happy kids in a crowded tub!
From Lily and Ella, back to Ellie and Lola. We had so much fun on Friday with the girls, we took advantage of the fact that Stacie had the day off today and headed to SeaWorld.
We spent a lot of time running around the Bay of Play -
 The kiddos checking out the sea turtles
The best part of the day was when the girls jumped in the photo booth for some silly picture taking! 
We tried to get Declan in on the fun, but he wasn't interested.
Brown-eyed girls!
Too cute!
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