Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Potty Progress

I'll spare you the play-by-play on Grayson's potty training, but suffice it to say that he's been doing really well. He averages more successes than misses everyday and typically when he goes in his pull-up it's because he's outside playing or really into a toy and doesn't want to take the time to go to the bathroom.

That said, his teachers surprised me today when I picked him up by asking if I would bring him in underwear tomorrow (with several changes of clothes, of course). They think he's ready to switch from pull-ups to real cotton undies.

This evening we bought him some training underwear which is a little thicker and more absorbent. I'm curious what tomorrow will bring, but am also thankful that Gray's teachers are patient (and brave) enough to help him move to the next phase.

I wasn't quite mentally prepared for giving up the pull-ups, but I know it's what needs to be done. Wish us all luck and here goes nothing!

Monday, March 28, 2011


Gray says a dozen funny things every day, but I wanted to capture a few recent conversations before I forgot them.

Grayson (waking up from his nap): Where's daddy?

Me: Out in the garage.

Grayson: I want to go in the garage, but mommy needs to stay inside.

Me: I can't go outside with you?

Grayson (very seriously): No, mommy needs to stay in the house while daddy and Grayson are in the garage. 

I thought I had a few more years before I would be kicked out of the boys' club, but apparently that day has come. Also, a few nights ago I saw Gray rubbing his eyes and he had another laughable quote:

Me: Are you sleepy?

Gray: No, I'm not tired, but my eyes keep closing. 

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Sesame Street Live

This morning we surprised Grayson with tickets to see Elmo at Sesame Street Live. I had grand visions of his reaction involving squeals of excitement and jumping up and down. As you'll see in the video, that didn't exactly happen...

He did start to get excited once we got there and Bert and Ernie came out to kickoff the show. We thought we had purchased seats on the twelfth row, but when we got there we were actually on the fifth row. Score! We were also on the end of the row, next to an aisle that a lot of the characters came down.

Gray got to meet and touch Cookie Monster, Grundgetta the Grouch (Oscar's girlfriend), Telly Monster, Super Grover and even Elmo himself. I didn't have my camera ready for all of them, but was able to capture a few of the meet and greets.

 We also had a great view of the rest of the gang up on stage.

Big Bird & Grundgetta the Grouch

 Elmo getting his groove on

Telly Monster, Elmo, Abby Cadabby and Zoe

Grayson dancing along to one of the songs

Now, I must say the merchandising that went on at this event was quite a spectacle. Sesame Street knows what kids want and parents are given a choice between dishing out lots of dough or facing a very public meltdown from their kiddos.

Luckily, one of our friends (thanks Adam!) had warned us about the Elmo balloons that magically appear during intermission. Not only do they cost an arm and a leg, but you then have to secure them under your chair for the second half of the show so that you don't block anyone's view. Money well spent.

Michael and I had a plan to counteract this merchandise manipulation by bringing one of Gray's Elmo dolls along with us to the show (so we wouldn't have to buy one there) and also planning a trip to the potty right about the time the balloons appeared.

All of these were sold in a matter of about three minutes, along with two other bundles that other workers were selling around the arena.

Crazy commercialism aside, we had a really fun time. Just when we thought it couldn't get any better, we walked back to our parking garage through a sky bridge and Gray thought it was the coolest thing ever. 

Here's a video I took as we were walking out of the show. He was getting tired at this point, but was still a little more enthusiastic than my other video announcing our surprise. 

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Family First

This past weekend we made an impromptu trip to Houston to celebrate the life of Michael's Aunt Carolyn who recently passed away from complications of breast cancer. While the purpose of the trip was grim, Aunt Carolyn always provided great company and an infectious laugh at every family gathering and this one was no exception.

It was nice to spend time with so many relatives that we typically only see maybe once or twice a year, and share stories and memories from the past. Grayson also enjoyed playing with his extended family and forming new memories and bonds.

Michael's cousin Chris won over Gray by pushing him all around the backyard in a toy tractor. Chris got quite a workout, but he was fueled by the perma-grin plastered on Grayson's face and he just couldn't say no.

Meanwhile, it was nice to see Michael's MawMaw (on the bottom right in the photo below) spend some quality time with her sisters who now live in Oklahoma. 

While in Houston, we also got to hang out with Michael's mom's side of the family and I can't believe how much baby Rhyann has grown from when we met her right after Christmas. Time flies...

On the way home, we took a little detour off of the interstate and stopped to stretch our legs at Turner Falls. It was seriously windy and the trees hadn't budded out yet, but the view still managed to impress Grayson. 

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Knock on Wood

I'm hesitant to blog about this for fear of jinxing the situation, but Grayson seemed to turn a corner this week when it comes to potty training.

He has finally overcome his aversion to sitting on the potty and actually proactively asked to use the bathroom a couple of times at home over the last week. He wanted to try standing up and never did anything, but I was just happy he was interested in it at all.

While we were at Target last Thursday I took Grayson by the little boy underwear section and his eyes lit up when he saw the Lightening McQueen undies. I told him that's what big boys get to wear when they use the potty and keep their diaper dry. He didn't say much and we went on our way without me thinking any more about it.

Then as we were driving down to Houston on Friday, Gray decided he wanted to go with me to use the restroom when we stopped for gas. I figured we would go through the motions without much fuss, but to my surprise he used the potty like a pro without having any of the step stools, small training potty, or seat ring we use at home. I celebrated like a fool and even recruited several strangers in the women's restroom to join me in praising my big boy.

While on the potty, he surprised me once again by mentioning the Lightening McQueen underwear, so perhaps it's all starting to sink in.

Since then, Grayson has had multiple successes each day and loves to come out of the bathroom and share his news with everyone around him. He's also amassing a collection of Elmo stickers which seem to fuel his passion for this new life skill.

I'm not sure if it's the promise of Lightening McQueen underwear or if he's just putting all the pieces together, but something has clicked and I hope he continues to stay interested. Now I just need to stalk up on clorox wipes and hand sanitizer for all those public restrooms we'll be visiting.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

While I Was Gone

I returned home last night and for the record there's no better welcome than Grayson beaming from ear to ear while running at full steam to meet me coming out of the airport terminal.

Although he's still my sweet little boy, it didn't take long to realize a few things had changed during the five days I was away.

We were playing in his room when he picked up a toy phone and gave me a look like he wanted me to play along. I quickly obliged, making fake ringing sounds. He picked up and began a conversation which I thought was directed at me. Boy, was I wrong. Here's how it went:

Me: Ring, Ring. Ring, Ring.

Grayson: Hello? 

Me: Hi Grayson, what are you doing?

Grayson: I'm playing at my house. 

Me: I missed you, Grayson. 

Gray: I miss you too, Rhyann. 

Me: Who? Rhyann? Don't you mean I missed you mama?

Gray: No, I'm talking to Rhyann (a little girl in his class at school). I miss you. Want to play?

Me (testing the limits of this "relationship"): Sure, I like you Grayson. 

Gray: I love you, Rhyann. 

Me: You love Rhyann? Is she your girlfriend.

Gray (sheepishly): Yeah.

Me (overly enthusiastically): Let's play cars!

Then when I picked him up from school today he kept going on and on about seeing his brother Luke. I kept trying to explain that Luke was his cousin and not his brother, but he didn't seem to believe me. It seems Grayson gained a girlfriend and a brother while I was away.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Not Cool

So I left today for a business trip and this is the kind of stuff my husband puts my son up to while I'm away. Apparently my husband gets a kick when my heart breaks into a million little pieces. Thanks, Mike.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Boys + Box = Fun

I'm not sure why we bother buying toys for our son. Like so many generations before him, Grayson is totally content with an oversized box and a little imagination.

He discovered a great box at his buddy Liam's house last weekend and the two had all kinds of fun opening and closing the flaps. Mike snapped a couple of pics with his phone and I can just see the wheels turning in Gray's head in the second photo. 

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Bed Head

This morning, Grayson's hair looked about how I felt. He had another wake up spell last night around 4:15 a.m. and despite successfully getting him back into bed about 20 minutes later, I couldn't get myself back into a deep sleep before it was time for the alarm to go off.

Meanwhile, I let Grayson sleep in until about 8 a.m. when I was completely dressed and ready to run out the door. At least one of us woke up smiling...

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Graysonisms 2.0

I was chatting with my friend Katie today about Grayson's conversation skills and what we lovingly refer to as Graysonisms. There are so many funny things he says that it's difficult to capture them all, but I figured it was time to write a few of these down before I forget them.

     Grayson: Where is mommy/daddy?

     Teacher: Your mommy/daddy is at work.

     Grayson: Mommy/Daddy at the office? Making money?

     Teacher: What does money buy?

     Grayson: Cheeseburgers.

He now loves talking on the phone and usually begins the conversation with, How are you feeling?, or his old standby, What are doing day?

Pronunciation continues to be an entertaining learning process, particularly for these words:

ambulamps = ambulance
peter = computer
baff = bath

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Grayson & Miss Molly

We recently met up with Aunt "Emmy" and her dog Molly at our neighborhood playground and both the human and furry kiddos had a blast.

Grayson is getting a little more fearless when it comes to the playground and as I got in position to take his picture, I was surprised to see him coming down head first (on purpose!). 

Luckily, Molly was there to catch him.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Playing Hard

Last weekend, Grayson had some friends over and they played and played and played until they were plum tired.

First, Cora took to one of her favorite spots in our house...the lazy susan that holds all kinds of sippy cups and plastic ware. This is a favorite of Gray as well. 

Liam preferred cruising around in one of Gray's cars, but you'll see he enjoyed a turn with the mini-sunglasses as well. Lookin' good little man!

As the kiddos get older, it's fun to watch them play together more instead of just playing in the vicinity of one another. Grayson and Cora enjoyed pretending they were asleep on the kitchen floor.

She really got a kick out of covering up Grayson as he lay "asleep."

Then Courtney & Michelle led the three amigos in the Hokey Pokey. Of course, Gray was singing a remix of the Reindeer Pokey which he enjoyed so much during his school Christmas Program.

They sang, giggled and turned their little bodies all about until they were all tuckered out.