Monday, November 29, 2010

Fun With Cheerios

– Oh, hi everyone! It's us! Is been a long time since we have chats.
– Oh yes, hi everyone. It has been a long time, but...

– 'Dis not really a good time. We is kind of busy. We is eating Cheerios.
– Mmmph. 

– Oh great. Now I is distracted and lose my Cheerio.
– Me too. But I find mine. 

– Is OK everyone! I find mine too.
– I is using my touching finger to check 'dis one out. Mommy says we talk more about my touching finger in 'nother post tho'. 

– Maybe everyone come back later when we is not eating. 'Dis sort of rude to be eating and conversating at the same time.
– I agrees. Is hard to concentrate on matter at hand. Or finger. I think I just lose my Cheerio again.

– Cheerios is a good thing though, just so you know.

– Oh yes. Very good. Om nom nom...

•   •   •   •   •

Mommy note: I had tried offering Nate and Seth Cheerios for the first time a little over a week ago, but I didn't get any takers. What a difference a week makes though – now they LOVE their Cheerios. I'm hoping this is the first step in getting them to eat small pieces of food since they really liked the idea of being able to feed themselves from their bowls.

*fingers crossed*

For awhile there I thought I'd be sending them off to college with a suitcase of pureés. Now I know I can at least send a box of cereal along with it.

If this post hasn't given you your fill of Cheerio fun just yet, head on over to our YouTube™ channel for some lessons on table etiquette with Nate and Seth. Hijinks included.

- L.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Charlie's Story

An update to A Sad Post: Charlie's mom Katy started a blog dedicated to her son. She has asked everyone to spread the word in order to raise awareness about meningitis.

Her blog, titled simply Charlie's Story recounts Charlie's all too brief life and documents his last days from the onset of his illness until his death. I recommend having a box of tissues handy.

- L.

Monday, November 22, 2010

If It Seems Like It's Been A Little Quiet Over Here...

Let me assure you, it has not been quiet. 

We are moving, standing, and attempting somersaults (no joke). I've been on a mission to get some nice shots of the boys and their new moves, but alas... my mission has been a fruitless one.

So you get what you get in other words. These really are the best pics I've gotten all week.

I hope you remember what Nate and Seth look like because I'm pretty sure future posts with photos will look something like this:

For the record, please note that everything around my two motion machines is in focus.

Also, for the record please note that if you are looking for a walker/wagon for your baby to practice his first steps with you don't need to shell out the big dollars like I did. An $8 bucket will do nicely.

Seth cruised his way across the room and over to PooBucket™ Corner hanging on to nothing more than his favorite bucket. Go Seth!

Oh, and in case you're wondering why the boys are wearing hats in the nursery, it's because I was eager to take some pics of them in their new pirate hats (they are getting quite the hat collection btw). They are also modeling their new fleece lined jeans, which have to be the most comfortable jeans ever. I wish I had a pair.

For what it's worth I wish you had a pair too, but I digress...

This is the best picture I got of Nate:

At least you're looking at something other than the back of his head. Also, it kind of looks like their pirate hats are fighting. Y'ar!!!

And the best picture of Seth:

Of course, I was only able to get a face shot because he was wondering where Nate went. Cute hats though, right?

And this photo pretty much sums up our week in pictures so it's sort of my favorite:

Also, now you know where Nate went. Hi Nate!

The video is at least a little more impressive, so head on over to our YouTube™ channel to check it out. Nate does a full stand, Seth exits with his marine-man crawling moves (and that's him you'll hear in the background making a little noise btw, but he's OK). I definitely had to put the camera down for good once Nate started doing his moves one-handed, but the little trembles for the first few seconds are adorable. Also scary.

Very, very scary.

It's the end times everyone – better lock your doors.

- L.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Thanks For The Laugh Blogger™ Stats

Last July, Blogger™ added a stats feature. It allows members to view their own blog's page hits, popular posts, referring sites/blogs, etc. 

It also allows you to see search keywords that have led people to your blog. I tend to check this feature fairly regularly because I like to keep an eye out for anything questionable (read: creeps looking for pictures of kids). I actually changed a post title a few months ago because a search phrase came up that made me raise an eyebrow.

Today, however I got a good laugh when "poobucket" came up under this week's keywords. I hope whoever was searching Google™ for "poobucket" got a good laugh too.

I feel kind of sorry for whoever was looking for tips on "establishing baby's bedtime" though since they sure wouldn't have found any advice here. ; )

- L.

Out & About: The Starbucks Edition

I've been wanting to get some pics of the boys in their pea coats for awhile now, but I kept forgetting to bring the camera along when we would head out. Or I'd remember to bring the camera and then forget to take the pictures. See: Mommy brain.

I finally got my act together a few days ago before heading out to Starbucks. Nate and Seth love it there by the way since they get coo-ed and clucked at by random strangers and regulars alike, and especially by the staff. One of the baristas is officially their "girlfriend" ever since she stocked coffee near our table a few weeks ago and they couldn't take their eyes off her.

Here are Nate and Seth upon arrival:

You can see from the semi-maniacal look in Nate's eyes that he's ready to get out of the stroller. Like, now. 

He didn't really calm down much upon release.

This slightly blurry shot above is the clearest one I could get since he was having such a good time he wouldn't stop moving and whipping his head around to look at everything. 

Seth on the other hand was more focused. Literally. Of course, they looked so cute when the coats came off I kept clicking.

Seth looking fetching in his new (slightly too big) red shirt: 

And Nate:

... who is perpetually teething so I couldn't manage a shot without hand/fingers in the mouth. 

Although I tried. 

But the best I could get him to do was switch hands. Even with the blur you can see how drooly those fingers are! 

- L.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Random Acts Of Domesticity

I recently came across a recipe online for a slow-cooker pot roast, although I'm not even sure I should call it a recipe since it was so simple. Really, it was a meal that cooked itself with less than 5 minutes of prep time. And it was not only delicious, it yielded two freezer meals for a lazy day (or two lazy days rather) plus a generous supply of homemade Baby Beef Stew after a run through the food processor. 

If you'd like to make this delicious feast yourself don't forget I already warned you that it may take up to 5 minutes to prepare.

Easy-Peasy Pot Roast:

• 3 lb. pot roast (I used a cross-rib)
• 10-12 little potatoes, halved (I pulled out all the stops and used both red and white potatoes)
• 1 bag of baby carrots

Rinse and place into slow cooker.

• Add 1 pkg. Club House pot roast seasoning (mixed with 1 cup water per package instructions).

• Pour over meat and veggies.

• Place lid on slow-cooker and set on low for 8 hours.

• Walk away and enjoy the rest of your day. : )

If you want to get fancy like I did, you can steam some peas and make a side-salad at the end, but this is purely optional.

Here was the end result:

Uninvited guests (unfortunately) may be included. Can't really blame poor Zed for trying though – and yes, I did (reluctantly) share.

All in all it turned out pretty well so I took a look around to see what I could get into next and noticed an entire bag of blueberries in my freezer – and you know what they say...

When life hands you babies that hate blueberries, better get baking!

So I whipped up a batch of blueberry muffins that have suddenly made breakfast for me a real thing around these parts again. These are straight from the Company's Coming cookbook series and very yummy. 

And last on my domestic endeavors for the week...

De-pilling the boys' Disana wool covers:

Oh, how I could go on and on about the awesomeness of these covers, but I will admit the extreme pilling caught me a little off guard this time around. However, 10 minutes with a razor and voilà:

BTW, I included the "leavings" in the pic so you all wouldn't think this was just a 10 minute Photoshop job instead of the real deal. 

Now if I could only find another 10 minutes to finish the other cover I'd really be in business. Ah well, there's always next week.

- L.

Operation Christmas Child: The Boxes Are Packed

As I mentioned in a previous post, we packed two boxes for Operation Christmas Child this year. It's our first time participating, but I had so much fun shopping I hope to make this an OP Christmas tradition. It was challenging to not only find things that would fit in a shoebox, but also taking into account language barriers, especially when it comes to toys. It was important to pick things that could be understood in any language. I thought I'd done a pretty good job on our first outing, but it turned out there was still room in the boxes, so back we went. And yet again for a few more things since there was still a few small spaces. Shoeboxes are roomier than they appear. Apparently.

Wrapping is optional, but really, I couldn't not wrap the boxes (lids separately of course). I hope OCC doesn't go broke paying extra freight because I got tape happy. : ) 

The boxes we packed were for 2 boys, ages 5–9. The contents are mostly identical so I just took a picture of everything that's going into one box. We scored some great deals (like 2-for-1 at Babies R Us plus a 50% off scratch card at the check-out!). Here's everything we managed to stuff into a regular shoebox: 

• Travel size Perfection game (pictures on the back are pretty self-explanatory so it shouldn't matter if the recipient can't read English. Also... no batteries required!)

• Lego Creator kit (all the pieces create 3 different vehicles. Again, pictures on the back are quite clear).

• Animal Planet dinosaurs (the other box has Animal Planet farm animals instead. There are approximately 15–20 different figures in each tube).

• Marvel Superheroes children's toothbrush (it has a cap for the brush and comes with a toothbrush "buddy". I got Spiderman for both boxes.)

• Art Supplies: 1 sketchbook, 24-pack of Crayola pencil crayons (with pencil sharpener).

• Sweets: Lifesavers was all I could come up with due to OCC regulations in Canada (individually wrapped hard candy is all we're permitted to send. Kind of a bummer.)

• School Supplies: 1 lined notebook, 12 HB pencils, a 12" ruler, 2 erasers and 1 highlighter pen.

• Clothing: 1 long sleeve shirt, 2 pairs of socks.

The only thing left to do is deliver the boxes this week. I hope the little boys who get these boxes have even half the fun that I had shopping for them.

Godspeed, shoeboxes. I hope you find your way to the little ones that need you the most.

- L.

Dear Nate & Seth...

That word doesn't mean what you think it does.


– Mommy

Friday, November 12, 2010

Nakey Time, Party Babies™ & More New Tricks

I've been meaning to write a post about Nakey Time and Party Babies™ for far too long. If only there were more hours in a day – the lament of mommies everywhere, I suppose. The new tricks don't help either because Nate and Seth are learning new things every day and getting into and up to more than you can imagine. But I digress... 

Nakey Time: If you've ever wanted to see two babies go absolutely bananas, feel free to drop by any night after they've had their supper because that's when the clothes come off. It's the most ideal time of day to get nakey since it's (almost) guaranteed the worst thing I'll have to clean up is a little pee.

Even though we've been doing this for months now, it still cracks me up to see how lively they get playing nakey in a crib. The location alternates, so sometimes the party is at "Seth's place" and other nights it's at "Nate's place". Whoever is hosting gets nakey first – it's the rule. At this point it's 50/50 on whether I'll need to change a sheet* when all is said and done, but it's worth risking what amounts to a small amount of effort to see them having so much fun (also I've become an expert at a fast sheet change). They typically average 15-20 minutes of non-stop nakey energy, which gets a big thumbs up from me because it helps get them nice and worn out for bed.

Or at least it used to, but I'll get to that in a minute.

I wrestled with posting photos, but after I took some anyway I realized these aren't too incriminating. So, for the first time at the OP we proudly present...


Classic nakey:

Nakey with interesting poses:

Unfortunately I just missed the high-kick Nate was doing with one of his legs while working on his headstand. 

And lastly, skinny nakey:

No wonder the pediatrician was raising an eyebrow. Won't somebody get this child a sandwich?

•   •   •   •   •

Party Babies™: Party Babies™ is a newer phrase around these parts. Before the parties started everyone would have Nakey Time, followed by a bottle and then it was straight to bed.

Now we party. Or rather, we PARTY!!! 

This is the nursery pre-party:

And this is the nursery post-party:

Well, mostly post-party. I think Seth took some of the party to bed with him. 

Enough said.

It all started after we had barely recovered from our first cold. Maybe the boys were so glad to be feeling good again it gave them renewed energy. Or maybe it was just a coincidence.


Instead of having their bottles and going straight to bed, they have their bottles (or a portion thereof) and then playtime is back on. Everyone is in a good mood, nobody is tired. Well, no babies are tired. Their mommy is another story, of course.

Unfortunately, this meant bedtime started getting later and later. In the pre-party days, Nate and Seth would drift sweetly off to sleep between 7:30 and 8. After the partying started bedtime was more like 8:15.

8:15 – OK, that's doable.

But then 8:15 became 8:30, and 8:30 became 8:45, and 8:45 became 9:00. I think you can see where I'm going with this. I was living for Daylight Savings Time kicking in last weekend since by then the Party Babies™ had managed to shift their bedtime all the way to 9:30. This was not good by the way. Oh sure, they slept in later in the morning but even so it was getting to be a pretty crazy schedule.

And then it was finally the big day. I turned the clocks back an hour and thought, "this is going to fix everything".


It took exactly 3 nights for them to get back to business as usual. Last night I finally managed to get everyone to sleep just after 9PM – it's definitely time for Plan B. Don't worry, I have one. And no, I won't be surprised if it doesn't work. Those are some crafty (and determined) babies after all.

And now for the new tricks... 

•   •   •   •   •

New Tricks: At our last appointment with the pediatrician she asked if the boys were sitting unassisted yet and I admitted they were not. Sitting unassisted is a big 9 month milestone. I knew this. I see babies younger than Nate and Seth sitting quietly and playing all the time. Around here, however, no one is interested in sitting because they would both rather be moving.

All. The. Time.

Also, sitting still is for suckers. Just ask Nate and Seth – they will tell you. Or show you as they bulldoze their way over you.

Of course, all bets are off when the clothes are off because for the last week Seth loves to sit during Nakey Time! Maybe it's the confined space since they're in a crib, but whatever works. See?

For the record, Seth still does not sit up when the clothes are back on and Nakey Time has not afforded Nate the same super-powers, but I'm not too worried. In fact, I suspect it will be a long time before Nate has any interest in sitting still because...

Nate is standing!!!

Two nights ago as I was putting Seth to bed (post-party of course), Nate was still roaming about the nursery floor. I was just doing up the zipper on Seth's sleep sack when I looked to my right and saw Nate pull himself up on his knees, place his hands on the white toy box and ta-da! All of a sudden he was standing up. Unfortunately I didn't have a camera in my hands last night, but no worries... there will be plenty of opportunities to get a picture. He already pulled himself up on the Haba™ wagon yesterday morning.

It's the end times. As in the end of any hope that I'll be able to sit down for 5 minutes during waking hours. Nate just learned how to crawl two weeks ago. Now he's cruising the nursery.

I'm in big, big trouble.

And I love it.

- L. 

*If your babies also love Nakey Time, but tend to be a little leaky one of these under the sheets is a must have. It's everything it claims to be and then some.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Operation Christmas Child 2010

We are participating this year and sending a shoe-box filled with Christmas awesomeness to a less fortunate child somewhere in the world. Actually, in true Oddest Prime fashion, we are sending two boxes.

We've done our shopping, but still have a bit of fun (like wrapping the boxes) to get to. No worries – we'll be posting pictures when all is said and done. : )

If you would like to participate, it's pretty easy and there are a couple of ways to get involved in Canada. You can pack your own box or pack a box online if you're pressed for time. Visit the Operation Christmas Child page at Samaritan's Purse Canada to find out more.

If you're in the U.S, U.K. or Australia please visit your country's site to find out more as shipping regulations and collection dates vary by country.

- L.

On The Move: Investigating The Bathroom

The bathroom was (mostly) uncharted territory until this morning. I say "mostly" because Nate and Seth have their baths in there, and Seth has occasionally forayed to the doorway on one of his many hallway crawls and peered in without actually crossing the threshold.

I spent last weekend baby-proofing the bathroom so today I didn't mind that everyone made a trip down the hall to explore points beyond the nursery. Of course, since I baby-proofed, there wasn't much to see.

Here they are with those innocent looks that say, "We isn't up to anything, mommy!":

But not for lack of trying. 

They looked high. 

And they looked low. 

They even spent awhile looking at each other. 

Finally they spotted the one interesting thing in the room. I think this is the exact moment actually that everyone noticed the big chunk missing out of the limestone tile and made a beeline for it: 

It was a truly exciting discovery. They must have spent at least 5 minutes checking it out. And possibly making it bigger.


I had hoped to get some better shots of their cute new fleecy jammies while they were roaming, but in the end I ended up wrestling them onto the big chair and snapping a quick pic of each. No time to try to elicit smiles – just click and we're done. That's how we roll around here at 9 months. Sitting still is for suckers. 

- L.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

A Happier Post: All Things 9 Months

I mentioned in our last "Updates On Everything" post that the boys are really getting mobile these days – and that you should stay tuned for imminent future posts (like this one). Well, this is another one.

The days of placing Nate and Seth side by side and taking a few cute pics at my leisure really are long gone – even when I have a helper like I did here and here.

And I was on my own yesterday.

Hence a lot of shots like these where Nate was long gone by the time I had the camera in focus, and Seth was making a hasty departure too*:

I was looking for something purple for our previous post to include at this point when I spied these guys:

These cute keepsake bears were lovingly knitted by their Great-Grandma Edna. I had planned to do a whole post about the bears with Nate and Seth posing with them, but I think you can appreciate that after today I had to give up on that idea.

Still though, I thought maybe that purple scarf would distract them sufficiently to at least keep them in the same spot long enough to snap a pic. And it did. The scarf was distracting enough for exactly one photo: 

Eventually I just let them loose on the nursery figuring they might randomly end up in a shot together. And they did. This is the one shot I got with both of them in it (where they both happen to be looking at the camera that is): 

It didn't last long. Eventually Seth moved into uncharted territory and left Nate behind. 

At least he finally had a good time in the baby Spa Bath

•   •   •   •   •

The other part of this post is the results from our 9 month check-up with the pediatrician.

Here are the boys' latest stats:

Nate: 18.5 lbs. (8.35 kg.) | 29.25 in. (74.5 cm.)
Currently, he is in the 90th percentile for height and the 25th percentile for weight.

Seth: 17 lbs. (7.7 kg.) | 28.75 in. (73 cm.)
Currently, he is in the 75th percentile for height and the 10th percentile for weight.

Although their weight has been consistent with their individual growth curves, their height has really shot up (both were at 50% at their 6 month checkup), which means we're going back in 6 weeks for another weigh-in instead of 3 months from now. Our pediatrician seemed mildly concerned since ratio-wise they are underweight for their height.

I'm not concerned, although we'll go anyway. Considering they eat a whole lot, have grown a whole lot (upward at any rate) and move a whole lot, I'm really not worried about my lean guys. Also they come by it honestly – on both sides.

Before I sign off, one more pic of Nate: 

I took this picture last week and while it's not the greatest photo ever, there's something about it that I love. It's very Nate and I wanted to post it before it got lost in the shuffle (as things do when you're chasing two rather mobile babies around all day). Much like his brother, he has a way of looking at the camera that just takes my breath away.

My wee babies are turning into little boys far too quickly.

- L.

* Of course you realize this is going to have a serious impact on their infamous "conversations" if they can't manage to be in the same shot any more often than chance allows. I think it's time to consider the duct tape again. Or super-glue.

Friday, November 5, 2010

A Sad Post

Last week there was an urgent call for prayer on one of the parenting boards I'm a member of. Another mommy had received the devastating news that her 3 month old son Charlie had bacterial meningitis and that the doctors treating him considered his prognosis grim. And so we prayed. Candles of hope were lit around the globe. We waited for a miracle. 

Sadly, Charlie did not survive. He passed away peacefully and painlessly in his parents' arms later that afternoon.

And so we mourned. And continued to pray for his family's loss and everything they would have to deal with, especially in the coming weeks. We took up a collection to help Charlie's family with expenses.

Charlie's funeral was this morning and his mommy shared the words she planned to say at his service with us all. She told us that her family would not be wearing black today but rather colors to celebrate the gift of his life. The dress she had picked was red and purple.

A request was made today via a post titled "Colors for Charlie":

If you are wearing bright colors to celebrate Charlie's life today, please post photos!
And so we did.

Nate isn't really a bright colors kind of guy, but he looked festive in a little purple scarf I nabbed from a teddy bear. Seth, as always, rocked it in red.

Rest in peace, sweet Charlie.

- L.