Friday, July 31, 2015

The Finishing Touch

Some kids might be obsessed with their train set or their baby doll or their stuffed animal.

 Orelia is obsessed with accessories only.  No toy can hold a candle to a beloved hat or necklace or purse.

 Last week she was obsessed with all of the baby hats we have inherited for Bennett from a friend.  She switched between a few and always wore them everywhere she went.  Of course this obsession came during the summer instead of a chilly winter week.

 The hats are now stretched a bit beyond the 3-6 month label, but they have been well loved.

She always knows just the right finishing touch to go with her toothy grin and pink manicure.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Behind the Fence

We are spending our entire summer in the backyard.

There are all kinds of shenanigans that take place in a summer backyard.

On any given day, behind the fence you might hear peals of laughter.

Such laughter can only be brought on my pegging your dad with a water balloon.

Behind the fence you will see chubby thighs sitting in green grass.

Little hands scrape the air in excitement as if revving an invisible motorcycle.

Miniature houses sit behind the fence for those that wish to be inside while being outside.

When little brothers sit underneath windows, the shutters always seem to pop open for a game of peek-a-boo.

If the weather is right, an inflatable pool may find its way behind the fence.

Splashing might lead to giggles which might lead to more splashing.

Mom always finds a way to sneak sunglasses into photos behind the fence.

Pools are great places for sibling cuddles.

And they are especially great places to make each other fall down with the hilarity of ball-in-the-mouth jokes.

If we are eating lunch at home, then the blondest and curliest member of the family always insists on a picnic lunch.

And for some reason all picnic lunches must be accompanied by bunny rabbit jumps across the entire yard.

I can hardly imagine anything I'd like less after lunch than jumping across the length of the yard.

She and Bennett love this game, however, and so the tradition is upheld at every opportunity.

All hairstyles are worn behind the fence and tested for their bunny-rabbit-jumping flounciness.

Behind the fence every butterfly must be accounted for and pointed out.  There are plenty, and we are still crossing our fingers for the opportunity to "please touch one please."

And so it is behind the fence we spend our summer.  Laughing over raspberries blown on bellies and hats stolen from little brothers.

Eyelashes are counted and leaves are watched swaying in the breeze.  There is a lot to be thankful for behind our fence.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

A Small Snack

There are certain expectations when feeding a baby.

The clothes will be changed afterwards.

Several squirts of OxiClean will be applied.

And Harper will have a feast on the chunks of food strewn about.

After a good meal, B is always cheerful.

He loves a backyard picnic almost as much as his sister.

Several strawberries, apricots, and kiwis later, and this guy is finally done.  Good work, baby boy, you have met all my expectations.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Hat Twins

As soon as I saw these photos of Bennett, I immediately thought of similar photos I took of Orelia two years ago when she and I used to sit in the backyard by ourselves.

Times sure have changed.  Orelia and I do hang out in the backyard by ourselves still, but there isn't a lot of sitting on blankets with shady hats anymore.  There's lots of hopping and running and singing these days.

There's something about putting my kids in bucket hats that makes them look a lot alike, and I'm okay with that.

 Bennett is a bit older in these photos, but they definitely look like siblings.

It's not as if it makes them "more related," but there's something thrilling as a parent to see similarities between your children.

They are their own people, but they are so very much alike.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Bennett at Ten Months

Our favorite little boy is now ten months old!  

He seems more like a boy and less like a baby every day.  He likes practicing assisted standing and takes some steps when holding onto our hands (something his sister never did).

He still isn't really crawling, but he gets on his hands and knees all the time and moves forward a "step" or two.  He can get into a seated position on his own and I almost always retrieve him from his crib while he sits there happily sucking on a pacifier.

He takes two 1.5-2 hour naps every day and gets about 12 hours of sleep at night.  We are so thankful for this good sleeper.

He's nursing four times every day, but isn't very interested in it.  His real love is food.  He loves all meat and fruit and will happily eat for an hour straight if the offerings are good.  John calls him our little chunk-a-munk because he loves eating so much and is so dense.

He has six teeth and four more on the way.  All of the incoming teeth appear to be on the top, so it will be funny if he ends up with almost a full top set and only two on the bottom for awhile.  They say teeth fall out in the order they arrive, so he may have a hard time eating apples without top teeth when he's in elementary school.

This little guy loves to laugh, and there is no sweeter sound in the world.  His sister is hilarious to him when she gives him raspberries, shakes her head, jumps around, and generally just comes running.  He loves her so much, and the feeling is mutual.  

He's starting to play with toys differently lately, and is pretty uninterested in most of our baby toy stash.  He loves Hot Wheels and board books with Star Wars pictures.  Apparently my house full of Disney princess paraphernalia will not be satisfying him.

 Luckily all our singing and musical toy are hitting the spot right now.  He loves to make as much noise as possible.  Boys will be boys.

Happy ten months to our fun outdoor-loving boy!  We love you, B!

Monday, July 13, 2015

Model Second Child

Everyone always said that parents take five times as many photos of the first child as they do of the second.

I have to disagree, however, because my entire memory card, Photostream, and Instagram feed are just full of pictures of my one child who sits still and smiles nicely for the camera.

There are no groans when I take out the camera, and there is no escape.  Bennett loves the attention of a photography session, and he's always eager to try and grab any item of camera equipment he can get his hands on.

This model behavior won't last for long, and I'll soon have to work for these chubby-faced grins.  Photography is a big part of my life, and I'm so grateful to have this little guy so willing and able on the other side of the lens.