Monday, September 30, 2013

{Real Life: I'm Tired}

Where Anders somehow manages to look adorable in his sweaty, tired, somewhat disoriented post-nap state, I fall short, so he's acting as my stand-in. I'm missing out on the nap aspect also, but the point is this. The end of summer has left me sweaty, tired, and somewhat disoriented.

Although we haven't quite found our new seasonal rhythm, we happily welcome fall. With promises of cooler weather and crisp leaves, pumpkin lattes and warm cider, kids in costumes and giving thanks, there is much excitement to come!

I'll be back later this week with a full post!

Thursday, September 19, 2013

{Weeks in Review}

I haven't shared a Week in Review in a while. Actually, I haven't shared anything in a while. The end of summer (but not the end of the Texas heat) and return to a more regimented schedule took me a bit by surprise, but I have been taking an occassional photo now and then when I remember! Here is a random rundown of a few things we've been up to lately. 

A couple of weeks ago we were in a slump, a stuck-at-home-doing-the-same-old-thing-every-day slump. And if your kids are anything like mine, a slump like that quickly leads way to boredom, with misbehavior close behind. So, armed with a random potato discovered in the pantry, a kitchen knife, and a few craft supplies, we decided to make potato stamps. 

Anders had fun, but I'm pretty sure I had an even better time than he did. I was just so impressed at how quickly and easily the activity came together...and so enamored with the results. The bold colors and geometric shapes were so eye-catching!  There is just so much potential with a project like this. You could practice colors, letters, shapes, and so on depending on your knife skills and your child's age. We will definitely do this activity again, maybe on a canvas to create wall art for Anders' room or even with fabric paint on tea towels to give as gifts!

In other news, Aksel has been doing his very best to keep me on my toes. He still strongly prefers his belly over his back, always lifting his head high to observe whatever action is worth his attention in the nearby vicinity. 

And while I typically enjoy watching his yoga sequences, I started to freak out a little bit a couple of weeks ago when he began to show early signs that he was getting ready to crawl. 

These days he is definitely scooting around. I wouldn't exactly call it crawling, but if a toy is enticing enough,  he can make his way across a room without a problem. 

Aksel absolutely loves attention from his big brother. I cannot wait to see the bond that these two develop as they get older. I pray that they would be blessed with friendship rather than rivalry! 

I can already tell parenting is about to get a lot more challenging as Aksel gets more mobile. The most appealing toy is always the one someone else is playing with, amiright? But those sweet moments of joint play are so special to witness!

There are a lot of other things that have kept us busy the past few weeks. We started potty training Anders, which deserves it's own post entirely. At this point I'll just say that in this situation - this child, these parents, this schedule, etc. - it's going to be a process. He is making great progress, and I'm doing my best to celebrate his successes. Anders also experienced his first full-blown stomach bug. Thankfully, it was extremely short-lived, and he handled it like a champ. I think he was actually quite amused by the bedside waste bin, insisting it stay for several days and making sure to frequently inform me that he 'spit up' (he hadn't), at which point he would emphasize his point by spitting into the trash can. I swear we don't model this behavior. We also started feeding Aksel solids. Sadly I haven't taken any pictures yet (parenting fail!), but fear not, there will be plenty of baby-covered-in-produce-purée photo ops ahead. 

Between all the kid-centric activities, we did manage to enjoy an incredible adults only evening celebrating Andreas' 30th birthday. It was a perfectly festive night, and I know Andreas felt loved. 

Thank God for that wonderful man. There's no one I'd rather do life with. 

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

{A First for Everything: Mother's Day Out}

I'm at an age where a large majority of my friends have kids between 0 and 6 years old. Recently my Facebook and Instagram feeds have been inundated with pictures of impeccably scrubbed, smiling children heading off to their first days of school. Some parents expressed feelings of sadness and sentiments of disbelief at the prospect of leaving their children for so many hours of the day or week, while others quickly followed the obligatory first-day-of-school photos with images of celebratory mimosa glasses. I, personally, found myself somewhere between the two extremes. I will miss Anders each Tuesday as I drop him off at Mother's Day Out, but I am grateful for the opportunity he will have to engage with his peers and learn to take instruction from other adults. I've already noticed that the quietness of the house while he's away is equal parts peaceful and unsettling (contradictory, but true!), but I am relishing the chance to lavish some undivided attention on this guy. 

In true first-day fashion, I attempted to pack a Pinterest-worthy lunch. My attempts fell a bit flat, but let's be honest. No amount of visual appeal is going to convince Anders to eat his entire meal with the distractions of new friends and new toys close by. At least that's what I told myself Week 2 as I hurriedly threw together his lunch at the last minute. On the subject of school-worthy foods, let's all take a minute to mourn the PBJ. Anders' Mother's Day Out program is a nut-free environment due to the drastic increase in food allergies, and it is seriously throwing me for a loop. Every Tuesday morning all I can think about is peanut butter crackers, ants on a log, peanut butter and banana sandwiches, and so on and so forth. Seasoned lunch-packers and creative minds, help me! I will say that I attempted to get Anders to eat a Dr. Praeger's broccoli pancake, and he (understandably) treated it as an assault against his senses, so that is not an option. 

Anders was pretty compliant when I went to take these pictures before his first day. Nevermind that the grass was wet, and I had to change his shorts before we left because the bottoms were completely soaked through. Woops! Also, I handed him the apple thinking it would make a sweet photo prop, and he promptly began eating it. I didn't want to discourage him from eating an apple, so I just let him go for it! Plus, I suspected he wouldn't eat his lunch and figured the apple would supplement his breakfast nicely!

When we arrived at his school the first morning, they had this precious little photo op set up for the kids. It's not the best picture, and there was so much going on that Anders would barely glance in my direction, but it's still fun!

My little man is growing up. I can hardly believe it. Thank you to everyone who is praying for him, his teachers, and his classmates!