Tuesday, July 28, 2009

OBX Highlight Reel

Here are a few highlights from our summer vacation at the beach. Grayson had lots of "firsts" like first time in the ocean, first time to eat sand, and first time to push up and stand independently (for about 10 seconds).

We had a blast reuniting with our buddies John & Whitney, plus hanging out with John's amazing family. They have been going to the Outer Banks for the last 17 years and welcomed us with open arms (even though we totally honed in on their family tradition). We couldn't have asked for a better first family vacation.

Grayson and John's nephew Lucas in the kiddie pool. Luke was not a fan of Grayson's splashing enthusiasm.

My baby has turned in to a boy.

We actually had to strip him down to his birthday suit and hose him off after this. I thought it would be years before that day would come.

First time in the ocean.

Grayson figuring out that sand sticks to drool and isn't much fun to eat.

Back view of our beach house

Our pals Whitney & John (Random fun fact: John & Grayson were born at the same hospital even though his parents moved to Indiana shortly after. They attended OU and lived in Norman several years...we were meant to be friends).

Whitney on the bridge that leads to the Sound

Sightseeing at the Currituck Beach Lighthouse

We even passed by the home and body shop of the Monster Truck Gravedigger. Michael was pumped and our lives are now complete.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Back to Reality (and blogging)

We returned this evening from our week-long vacation to the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Despite Grayson's meltdown on our last plane ride home, it was a great vacation. Our week consisted of a beach house full of fun people, amazing food, relaxing by the ocean, and even a few afternoon naps thrown in for good measure.

I'm way too exhausted to upload pictures tonight, but I promise to have some up soon. For now, I need to spend some quality cuddle time with Roxy.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Another baby boy!

The Solomon family (my stepdad's side) now has another boy in its ranks. Eric Ladd Elgin (aka Ladd) was born to my cousin Julie and her husband Eric today. He is 7 lbs. 10 oz. and 20 inches of pure sweetness. I'm sure big brother Van is so proud, as are we. Can't wait to meet the little guy!

Leaving on a Jet Plane

This Saturday we leave for a week-long vacation to the Outerbanks of North Carolina. We CANNOT WAIT to take our first official family vacation, introduce Grayson to the ocean and beach, plus be reunited with John & Whitney (two pals from our days in St. Louis).

But before we can relax by the ocean, we have to pack up all our clothes and baby gear, board two flights to get to Norfolk, VA, and drive an hour or two to the beach house. I will admit, I'm a little nervous about taking Grayson on an airplane. I just don't want to be "that" family with the inconsolable child -- trapped at 30,000 feet in the sky.

So, say a few prayers for our travel day on Saturday. Between worrying about remembering the car seat, baby food, and the kitchen sink, I'm definitely going to need a vacation from preparing for our vacation. Luckily, the only thing on our agenda next week is to relax, so it will all be worth it in the end.

I don't know if we'll have internet service at the beach house so my blog posts may be on hiatus as well, but I promise to keep you updated via the Twitter feed in the margin.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

A Whirlwind Week

We've had an extremely busy week hanging out with my sister Amy and nephew Holten, plus about 30 members of our extended family and friends. It was great meeting Holt and watching Grayson check him out. They are leaving today to head back to North Carolina, and I'm sure my brother-in-law Ben is counting the hours until he can see them again.

Here are a few pictures from the weekend.

The next generation three amigos. Cousins = BFFs

Our growing family (minus Levi and Ben). Finally, the boys will outnumber the girls!

Grayson hamming it up as always

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Welcome Miss Cora Mae!

Today our friends Rob & Courtney welcomed their daughter, Cora Mae, into the world. She was born at 4:29 p.m. and weighed in at 8 lbs. 5 oz. and 19.5 inches long. Though she's not showing them in this picture, I think she has her mama's eyes which means she's sure to be a heartbreaker. After an outbreak of baby boys, I'm just so happy we now have a girl in the mix.

Dental Hygiene

Now that Grayson has four (and a half) teeth, I've switched from wiping off his teeth with a wet washcloth to actually brushing them. After buying several different styles of infant toothbrushes, the finger brush seems to work well for now.

Of course, he's so busying trying to teethe on the rubber finger, he doesn't seem to notice that this contraption actually serves a purpose. Here are some shots of his first brushing experience:

Challenge #1: Getting Grayson to stop talking long enough to brush his teeth

Inspecting the finger brush as it approaches his face (and likely thinking to himself, "Whatever that is, it looks tasty!"

This is different

Not so sure about this

Hmm, quite fun to bite on!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Table Food

We've been feeding Grayson bites off of our plates lately and it's very entertaining to see him react to different foods and textures.

We had spaghetti a few nights ago which was a life lesson for me as I learn to let go of control and cleanliness in the highchair. I realize it's going to get A LOT messier before it gets better, but I have to admit part of me wouldn't mind if he took to using utensils at around, say, 11 months. I'll stop there and let the pictures tell the rest of the story.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Pondering Life's Mysteries

For this and other random expressions from the long weekend, please visit the Grayson Photo Gallery link on the left-hand margin.

Happy Birthday America!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

10 Months & Counting

It's hard to believe Grayson is already at the 10 month mark. He's been in the outside world longer than he was growing inside me. Though he had a pretty good thing going in the womb, it's safe to say that his current life isn't too bad either.

He's had a big month, perfecting his mobility skills to the point that he's confident enough to cruise around the coffee table and can nearly stand up from a sitting position without needing something to pull up on. Grayson's vocabulary has also expanded from bye bye and dada to now include mama (which thrills me to no end). He seems to be associating other words when we say them and point to things (like baba for bottle or Roxy's name).

We're back into another teething cycle which seems to be going slower than the last four teeth. Grayson's top front tooth on the left side has barely cut through and the one next to it is shortly behind. He's as drooly as ever and even his plastic-backed bibs don't seem to keep his shirts dry these days.

Ahh, how nice it will be when he no longer needs bibs. Sometimes I feel like he'll be getting his driver's permit around the time we take them off. Most of his bibs are now stained from various food experiments and self-feeding, or the velcro has been washed so much it no longer works. I can't seem to bring myself to buy more because I keep telling myself he'll be out of them soon enough, but in reality I should just bite the bullet and get some that don't make him look like the dirty kid in class.

Over the last month, Grayson has really taken an interest in music. He loves his musical toys, as well as "playing" his Little Tykes piano. He also enjoys singing all kinds of nursery songs (with me moving his hands in motion to go along with the words, of course). As I sing songs like The Itsy Bitsy Spider or Pat-a-cake he holds his mouth open like he's trying to sing too, but can't quite figure out how. He squeals with joy at the hand motions and claps afterward like he wants to go again.

Other fun games include hide-and-seek/chase like the video in the last post, playing with any kind of blocks and crawling through tunnels. At Grayson's school they have a tunnel made out of tent-like material that he thinks is endless amounts of fun to crawl through. His Johnny Jump-up also continues to be a favorite pastime.

I'm hopeful that someday our son will have a full head of hair. The hair on the sides and back of his head is really filling in, but it's extremely fine and the top just won't seem to grow. He's still having a few eczema outbreaks on his scalp, so that may be part of the problem. Fingers crossed the top hair will catch up with the rest someday soon.

Not much to report on the food front. He continues to be a non-discriminating eater (have you checked out this kid's thighs?) and is transitioning from pureed to chunkier foods and finger foods. We introduced a sippy cup several months back, although we haven't been very consistent about using it. I probably need to work on that if we want to eventually transition him off the bottle.

A monthly update would not be complete without a report on Roxy. Though she isn't always a fan of his mobility, she is more gentle with Grayson than we thought she would be. She has yet to snap at him even though he pulls her hair before we can stop him and tends to charge at her in a full-on flailing crawl that is sure to scare anyone at floor level. Her latest pleasure is staying at a safe distance and then running in to give Grayson a quick lick on the cheek or leg and then run away before he can catch her. Someday he'll catch on to this game and take her by surprise, but for now she enjoys having the upper hand.

Can't say that I blame her. I'm enjoying the upper hand while it lasts as well. I'm sure he'll be outsmarting me soon enough.