Saturday, April 30, 2011

Sweet Potato boy

It's official-- Justin likes real food, none of this rice cereal nonsense!

Friday, April 29, 2011

Baby apples ready to go

Another morning of peeling, chopping, steaming, pureeing and freezing down! Are there laws that prohibit child labor in massive quantities of food prep? Not for Waldorf families...

Apples are ready to go! I love having 'ice cube'-size baby food chunks convenient and easy! (and may I mention MUCH cheaper to buy 4 organic apples than to buy 16 1 oz containers of organic apple baby food)

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Girls in the kitchen

Justin has been, how shall I put it, 'less-than-excited' about plain old rice cereal. Baby oatmeal is a bit of an improvement, but he is obviously a 'foodie' who appreciates new tastes and textures. When Alex and I were eating breakfast this morning he grabbed a slice of pear from my hand and mouthed it contentedly. This was the 'sign' I'd been waiting for to start making some baby food!

We broke out the steamer and food processor and went to town. Today Alex and I prepared sweet potatoes and pears for the little guy. The video below is his reaction to the pears (we have to wait a few days before giving him the s.p.-- only one new thing at a time).

Testing the product-- Alex declared "It's not too bad".

He was obviously NOT happy about being in the highchair to begin with....

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Our Little Farm

When we were in Des Moines, I happened to hit the Borders store closing....where they were selling everything in the store. I picked up a little solid oak bookshelf (I really wish I would have had the room to bring back some floor-ceiling ones!) and it found a home in the library. I framed a page of one of my favorite books- A Farmer's Alphabet by Mary Azarian- to hang on the wall. The barn was a present from GranMama and GranPapa last Christmas, and the playmat (and some animals) are Mama-made. Other figures are a combination of antiques from Great-Grandma Alice, garage sale finds and gifts.

It's milking time! Planting Vegetables: Auntie Rorie's old doll rides to the Farmer's Market in the back of Papa Bob's childhood truck.

A view from afar:

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Auntie Carrie

Auntie Carrie stopped by to help out with the kiddos as I started to pull the household back together after our two weeks of travel! Alex and Justin played board games and dress-up for hours. :-) Thanks for the help, Carrie!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Buckle Your Seatbelts....

OK-- so it's been a LONG while since I've updated, so those of you getting this blog via RSS feeds, buckle up! :-)

Alex's Spring Break extended to Easter Monday, so she got to accompany Justin and me to Kindermusik this morning. It's too bad my camera was in the car, because she was SUCH a good 'Mama' to Nikki during class. She watched the other Mamas very carefully and made sure to do the exact same things with her dolly that the babies were doing.
Because of her great direction-following (and a box of too-small clothes to return to Janie & Jack), we headed to MOA after class. She was told that if she walked the entire time (I only brought the single stroller for J-bear), we could get lunch at the American Girl store. Not only did she walk, she babywore Nikki throughout the mall. When were in the AG store, we had several people ask where we got Alex's Ergo doll carrier. AG should contract with the Ergo company to make their own line-- they'd sell like hotcakes!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter Raspberries

Justin has a new skill to show off!

Easter Egg Hunt

Since the Easter Rabbit was running late, he hid eggs in GrandMama and GrandPapa's yard during Alex's naptime. This was perfect, because the kids both really needed some rest time before Phase II of Easter began. The Magnolia tree is in full bloom and is absolutely gorgeous (insert allergy attack here). The fallen petals also made for some tricky egg-finding! Apparently Des Moines is a test market, because this year the Easter Rabbit hid a combination of real, felt and traditional plastic eggs. Alex, Justin and their adoring GrandMama and GrandPapa Jones.
The baskets were inside. Included in the booty were Mama-made softies (Goose for Justin, Butterfly for Alex), gorgeous wooden teeching toys and some beautifully-illustrated books.

Easter Sunday Service

Alex and the Rev. GranPapa Jones.

We were honored to be able to attend GranPapa's Church for Easter Sunday. Alex was really excited to go up for Children's Sermon with 'Pastor GranPapa'. She even took a moment to give him a hug during his lesson :-) The 'Children's Church' wasexcited to welcome Alexandra as a visitor, and she didn't hesitate when it was time to march down the aisle and go off to class. The Church choir invited Rorie and me to sing with them, which was a lot of fun too! After the service was over the kids had a 'Treasure Hunt' for Easter goodies and then we went to Easter Brunch at the Machine Shed. Justin slept through the beginning of Church and brunch. Dave took him out to be near Alex (just in case she got nervous about being away from us), but she had to problems, so he and Daddy hung out in the nursery.After we returned home, it was time to check the Bunny Nest we built early that morning. There were some beautiful eggs there! The Easter Rabbit was a bit behind schedule, so he left the special 'Wild Eggs' and said he'd return to hide the candy ones later.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Coloring the Eggs

Even though the hard-boiled eggs froze and cracked a little in the fridge, Alex had a fun time dyeing them.

The 'wild Rabbit' will lay some special eggs in an Alex-build nest tomorrow morning. The 'wild Rabbits' had a fantastic time trying a new encaustic technique this year. Basically you just draw on a very, very hot egg with a crayon. The wax melts on contact and makes some really nice marks. Then we (I mean the Rabbits) dyed the eggs purple to give them a 'wild' feel.

pre-Easter Madness

We started the day with a pre-Easter brunch at Uncle Willy's apartment. We had a couple of 'housewarming' presents to drop off, so it was the perfect excuse to invade his space and bring an assortment of delicious breakfast pastries! :-)

Afterwards, we headed to Jordan Creek Mall to see the sights. It was SO crowded, and I was about ready to pull the plug on the entire endeavor when GranMama begged me for the chance to 'do something really fun'. I relented and soon Alex and GranMama were standing in front of the Build-A-Bear store!

One fluffy (if somewhat garishly-colored) bunny later, we left with a beaming Alexandra. 'Marie Rabbit' (yes, she has two names) has been her constant companion ever since. This brings the total of 'do not lose' items up to four- Miss Kitty, Marie, Marie Rabbit and White Blankie. Will the madness never end?

Friday, April 22, 2011

Des Moines!

We joined Auntie Rorie, Uncle Willy, GranMama and GranPapa in Des Moines for Easter this year. Justin and Alex enjoyed a luxurious ride down in the new minivan. Dave and I rediscovered our love for 'Rest Areas' (with a three year old who wants to run while Mama nurses the baby, they're perfect!).

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Like Father, Like Son

Here's a snapshot of Dave's baby book.Here's Justin.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Plane Trip Home

The trip home deserves a write-up. Both kids were fantastic travelers! We ended up having the entire row to ourselves, so were able to stretch out a little. The flight attendant felt sorry for me and comped our 2 $5 snack boxes (score!), and my daughter was the best little independent three year old out there! She watched her DVD (obviously a HUGE treat, as we have no screen time at home), colored and played with some little piggie erasers for the entire time. No bathroom trips necessary! Justin drank a bottle, nursed a bit and then slept practically the whole flight. I even got to read my Kindle for an hour! I wouldn't hesitate to fly with my 'two travel buddies' again.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

A Wilting Flower at the Phoenix Zoo

In Phoenix terms, 72 degrees is lovely. In Alex terms it's still 'too hot'! My little wilting flower dragged through the Phoenix Zoo this morning. I finally gave in and let her ride in the stroller (Justin in the Ergo), but I did feel mighty silly pushing a 3 1/2 year old around. We got to the zoo about 8:30am, and were excited to see all the animals active before the heat of midday. Wrong. Phoenix zoo animals are lazy! They were all still sleeping (it was 'too cold' for the Orangutans to come out!). So we walked from exhibit to exhibit and listened to an overheated, undernourished Alex complan. Last zoo trip for a while! :-)

Monday, April 18, 2011

Back to the States

Although Alexandra was very upset to leave Mexico, we were all packed up and ready to depart by 7am! We enjoyed some fresh, fresh, fresh flour tortillas from a roadside factory on the way out of the country (they tasted like donuts!!) After a nap, it was back to the closet for try on Auntie Carrie's old costumes, that is. She fell in love with this sassy little red number! She was sorely disappointed when there were no matching shoes to be found. Where did this kid come from?

Margie, Richard, Jenny, Madeline, Leah and Duane came over to meet Mr. Justin, have some dinner, and play for a while. Alex absolutely adores Madeline, and they spent the entire evening playing. At bedtime Alex tearfully declared she wanted "to be older like Madeline". She didn't "want to be three. I want to be old and go to school and be like Madeline". Soon enough, dear one-- soon enough.

Justin thanking Great-Uncle Richard for the fantastic digs in Puerto Penasco.Not sure if he likes Canadians...maybe if Duane stopped pinching him...

Justin and Jenny.

Alex and her idol.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Last Day at the Beach

What we did TODAY: Hang out in the condo (winds were overpowering outside!), take a walk down the beach to Great-Aunt Margie and Great-Uncle Richard's place, Sort our shells, and take naps!

Couldn't ask for a better vacation-in-a-vacation!

An Exciting Discovery

We started off this day with another early-morning beach walk. Since the moon was full, the tides go out an extraordinarily long way. During our outing Alex and I made an exciting discovery-- a starfish all covered with sand. I rinsed him off and Alex made some observations before covering him with her hat and rushing off to get Grandma Mary and Papa Bob. Once we had all seen him, she gingerly picked him up and brought him back to the water, where he disappeared into the ocean.