Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas Eve

Christmas festivities began with a pre-Christmas trip to Elmira to celebrate there.  After 10+ years of travelling 3.5 hours on Christmas Eve, we decided to allow the boys to wake up in their own homes on Christmas morning.  With a houseful of people and lots to do, I didn't manage to take many pictures.  In fact, the only one I did take was this one of Eric:
Christmas Eve consisted of celebrating with our good friends, the Carlisles.  We arrived and Eric was dressed to impress . . . and spent the first hour of our visit sleeping in his carseat:
Awake and ready to party:
Here comes trouble - Evan and Dillon riding on Dillon's tractor.  The next 30 minutes that ensued were hysterical - with Evan driving them full speed into the woods, Dillon getting tossed off, then crashing into our car and doing a 360 . . . all while the snow started to fall.  They had a blast:
We got home to a full-on snow fall and Evan was thrilled:
Eric's first snow:
Starting a Christmas Eve tradition of reading "Twas the Night Before Christmas" as was always done in my house growing up:
Trying to get a picture of the boys on the couch.  Of course, had to give Evan chocolate to even get him to sit, so he is feeding himself as we took this picture.  At least Eric looks cute:
Checking out the ornaments:
And a lit present:
Brian worked very hard to get the luminaries lit as well.  They look great, especially in the snow:
Looking forward to Santa's visit tonight and a chance to visit with more family tomorrow. Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 21, 2012

9 months old!

I feel like I say this every month, but where is the time going?  This first year is flying by at warp speed.  9 months old!!  Eric is into EVERYTHING these days.  He is all over the place - pulling himself up on anything, cruising around anything he can hold onto, climbing up and into things and wanting to play with whatever his brother is playing with.  He has taken to destroying the train table on occasion, which doesn't make Evan very happy.  He loves his Fisher Price basketball set and will sit there and shoot repeatedly.  In the past few weeks he has learned how to do "So big" (video coming soon) and will wiggle his head back and forth whenever we say "wiggly baby".  He is full of personality. 

His 9 month appointment didn't go so well.  The little guy is way under weight (15 lbs, 15 oz).  That put him in the lowest possible percentile.  He is 26.75 inches long (3rd percentile).  And his head is a little disproportionate at hte 50th percentile.  It didn't help that he had thrown up the entire contents of his stomach about 15 minutes before the appointment.  In any case, the doctor put us on a strict weight-gain plan to fatten him up.  It takes about double the effort to get the right amount of calories/fat in him each day, but he's doing well.  He was weighed today (one week later) and he'd gained a half of a pound.  That's impressive considering he'd gained 3 oz in 1.5 months before that . . . which is what prompted this weight issue.  Here is our little skinny minny posing on his frog chair:
Look at those chicken legs:
And quite comical comparison here.  Evan was almost 20 pounds at 9 months.  Chicken legs vs thunder thighs.  I'm afraid Eric has a long road ahead of him if he's ever going to be able to put up a fight against his older brother:

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Here comes trouble . . .

I know I'm overdue for a 9-month photo but I forgot to take one this past weekend - oops!  Hoping to get one on Friday morning instead. I also want to get some of Eric's new "tricks" on video for that 9 month post.  But this little guy is going to be our trouble-maker.  Brian was unloaded the dishwasher yesterday, turned his head for a minute and this is what greeted him:

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

It's beginning to look at lot like Christmas

We were up in NJ this past weekend for my cousin Amy's wedding (pictures to come soon).  We decided to take Evan into NYC for the first time on Saturday.  Since Nana and Papa made the long drive to help us out with babysitting, they were able join us on the trip while Deedee and Pops stayed home with Eric. 

Evan loved the train ride . . . even the second "leg" of the trip (from Newark to NYC) where we had to stand the whole time.  You'd think someone would have offered us a seat since Brian was holding Evan the whole time . . . but no luck.  One guy gave a half-hearted offer after Evan kicked him several times.  Thanks but we were 5 minutes away at that point.  Once we got there, Evan was in awe.  He got to see double-decker buses, taxis and lots of cars and people.  We made our way to the Macy's window displays and he was loving it:
Looking at the windows:
Checking out the tree in the NYC Public Library:
And we finally made our way to Rockefeller Center to see the tree and ice-skaters.  Evan was in awe: 
And here Evan and I are looking at the tree: 
And Eric stayed behind, but here's a Christmas looking photo of Eric in his pjs:
Looking forward to the coming weeks and all of the holiday celebrations!

Monday, December 10, 2012


Thanksgiving was a few weeks ago now but I just got my memory card back.  We spent the Thanksgiving weekend in Elmira as usual.  Eric was happy to be visiting his Nana & Papa.  Here he is in his Thanksgiving outfit . . . worn 4 times now by Matthew, Evan, Claire & Eric:
A rare photo op of the two boys:
The outtakes.  The one on the right is the usual where Evan hugs over Eric's face, smothering him:
Evan has developed a really cute, senstitive side where he wants to try to make his brother laugh and feel better if he hears him crying.  Here he is playing peek-a-boo with Eric on Thanksgiving day:
Colin and Morgan:
A happy Nana:
Family photos:
Too bad it went all too quickly and we were home and back at work before we knew it.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Christmas Card Madness

Taking the Christmas card picture was quite the comedy act this year.  First, let me say that Evan is quite the smart little boy.  He generally REFUSES to get his picture taken.  We wanted him to climb in the box because we thought it would be more "fun" for him.  He quickly said "no".  We then told him we'd give him an M&M to get in the box . . . he thought for a minute and then said "no".  We offered him an entire mini-pack of M&Ms and he climbed right into the box.  I then grabbed the camera and went to snap away, which is when I realized I had left my memory card in Elmira.  The kids were set up and ready to go and I was running around like crazy.  I found the memory card in my old point-and-shoot camera BUT it was full.  So we had the kids set up again, I tried to snap away and got the full error.  A few minutes later, I'd cleared off some pictures and we began. We started with Eric sitting in front of the box and, the moment we put him down, he would crawl away.  Then we tried them in the box together but Evan didn't want to share his personal space.  And finally ended with Eric standing up holding onto the box because then he couldn't move.  And of course Evan is in this phase where he makes this horrible cheesey face for pictures, so trying to get him NOT to do that was the most difficult part of all.  I thought it'd be funny to show a bunch of the out-takes. 
We ended up using the biggest one here but some of these others are really cute - for all different reasons.

Monday, December 3, 2012

The first tooth is through!

If you look very closely, you can see Eric's first tooth that popped through last Thursday (November 29th).  He's definitely been a little extra cranky, a little extra drooly and lot more focused on putting his hands/fingers/toys in his mouth.  On Thursday when I went to pick him up at daycare, I could finally see the white poking through.  And when you touch it with your hand, you can feel the actual tooth has broken through the gums.  In case it's hard to see, but it's on our right (his left) on the bottom.  Let the never-ending cycle of teething begin!

Sunday, December 2, 2012

A Longwood Christmas

One or our favorite times to visit Longwood Gardens is at Christmas time.  They have tons of lights, decorated trees, red & white flowers . . . you get the picture.  Evan was excited to have free space to run as well:
Our first stop were the train tables.  There are several trains running on tracks and Evan's face lit up when he saw some of his favorite Thomas characters:
Eric was more than happy to pose for photos for us:
Evan wouldn't turn around to get his picture taken . . . here is the closest thing we could get to having both boys in the same photo by the trains:
Posing in front of the poinsettas:
All three boys in the children's garden:
More in the children's garden - playing with the water (and still not happy to have his photo taken):
A beautiful table set for display:
We will continue to visit Longwood Gardens at Christmas time for a long time. It is amazing.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Evan's Tubes - Take 2

There is never a dull moment around our house these days.  The boys had both been battling colds the last few weeks and we thought they were on their way to recovery until last Monday. Eavn was cranky in the morning (not unusual) and we sent him off to school.  Daycare called soon after and said Evan was having trouble swallowing and was really upset.  By 3:00 they called me with him hysterically crying in the background.  Off to school I went to get him and then to an urgent care because I couldn't get him to see his regular doctor.  Turns out his tubes in his ears were not in the right place and he had developed an ear infection.  The poor guy just kept holding his ear and screaming crying.  I got him to see his ENT the next morning and by Wednesday, he was scheduled to get his tubes replaced.  Evan has allergies to antibiotics and the best ones for curing ear infections are the ones he can't take.  This is one big reason why we got tubes originally, because we can treat ear infections with drops.  However, the ears were blocked up with wax and infection so the drops could never get to where they needed to.  Since this was his first cold of the season and it had turned into an infection without his tubes working properly, his doctor agreed to do the tubes the next day.  But since he was a last minute addition to the schedule, it meant he had the last appointment . . . which meant no food all day!  By the time we go to DuPont, Evan was in a surprisingly good mood considering it was 4:00 PM and he last ate at 6:45 AM. Our doctor was running late but DuPont is the best because they have a children's playroom.  I didn't have my real camera, so these next few pics are not ideal.  But here he is shooting hoops and loving the playroom area:
About 20 minutes after we went to the playroom area, they called us back down.  Here is his reaction to being taken out of the playroom.  He threw a full on tantrum, kicking and screaming on the floor:
And here he is settled in nicely watching Sponge Bob for the first time. He was able to have his sheep with him for his procedure and the sheep even has a hospital bracelet around his leg.  This is a children's hospital so they are really wonderful with kids.
Coming out of anesthesia was rough on Evan. This was his 3rd time coming out of it and each time has not been fun.  We made it home by 7:00 and were on the road for Thanksgiving at 8:00 PM.  Nothing quite like getting your kid out of surgery and then putting him in the car for 4 hours!  We knew he'd be tired and fall asleep, which is exactly what happened.  And hopefully we're all set for awhile and he will outgrow these infections sooner rather than later!

Sunday, November 25, 2012


I unfortunately left my digital camera memory card in Elmira, so no one will get to see Thanksgiving pictures until a few weeks from now when I see Janet & Vinnie again.  In the meantime, this gives me a perfect chance to catch up on some posts I'd been wanting to do.

Cartwheel photos are a small hobby of mine.  The tradition started in college - back in the days before digital film.  This is my first cartwheel photo from spring break in the Bahamas.  It's with Kelly (I'm the one in the background).  Knowing how difficult it is to capture the right moment now that I've done this a hundred times with a digital camera, I'm surprised looking back at how great this photo turned out in one take. Big thanks to the photographer (Chris :) 
This one was taken in the Outerbanks back in 2008:
 This one was taken at night in Venice in 2008:
Most recently in Central Park (November 2012):
One of my more idiotic ideas . . . at 9 months pregnant.  What I haven't shown here is how I collapsed under the extra weight but avoided landed on my belly thankfully.  Looking back, it's pretty funny:
And probably one of my top three favorite photos, taken in Sedona in 2007.  I can't explain how much I love this one.  Taking this photo was pretty much as dangerous as it looks.  The drop off on either side would have killed me.  The platform was much wider than the balance beams I was used to so it didn't seem overly dangerous at the time.  But I don't think I'd have the courage to do it again today:
I know I've taken others over the years but am having trouble finding them in my files.  And though I'm getting older and can't quite cartwheel like I used to, I hope I can continue on with this tradition for as long as possible.