Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Joys of Camping with 3 and 2/3

We took a sporadic camping trip this weekend to a camp ground 45 min away.We were hoping since we left after nap time, Jackson would just take his afternoon nap in the car. Guess we should have picked a camp ground a little further away if we wanted that to happen. This kid was on an adrenaline high to say the least. Every moving vehicle on the road was yelled out at the top of his lungs the whole way there.

At 4 pm when we set up our brand new tent, this is what he was doing:

He didn't stop until 9 pm, when he crashed in his pack n' play (yes spacious tents!)

We went on a little hike the next day down to the water. I went back to the tent a little early to take a nap--since baby and I got all of 3 hours of sleep during the night. [Note to self: if you are ever stupid enough to go camping during 3rd trimester again, do yourself a favor and bring a hefty air mattress. Camping pads are too thin for your new body size.]

Mark and Jackson stayed down at the water, practicing their throwing skills. Jackson was in pure heaven. Rocks, water, Dad, and splashes.

I love his facial expressions in this sequence

Mark said he tried numerous techniques to woo Jackson back to the hiking path... none of which were successful. He finally just had to carry him away screaming at the top of his lungs.

We ended with a little dip in the pool at a nearby water park. Jackson has talked about his wet hair, and swimming everyday since. 

We're still recovering from his missed nap--many many tantrums have come out since we've been home, but other wise he is sure one happy boy!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

School's Out!!!

Last week  furthered the streak of phenomenal weather we've had for most of the year. Mark finished his last final on Monday of last week, and it's been a lot of non-stop fun since then. (Writing note: sorry for all the "last"s. I couldn't come up with a good synonym!) Jackson couldn't be happier to have his favorite buddy with him, and I have to second that happiness.

We've been making plans like crazy and doing sporadic things around this amazing city the whole week. Most of this in attempt to enjoy 70-80 degree weather with fewer bugs and lower humidity than July will offer, plus my ankles aren't swelling yet. We should take advantage of that also!

The iphone is a nice way to capture these little extravaganzas, but boy it makes our noses look huge!

We took a pleasant walk over to the big house during a lunch time picnic near Mark's office. We bucket listed going inside for a must-do summer activity this year. (Anyone have connections??)

We arrived right as a school bus of 100 high school students happened upon the premises. Jackson was a bit overwhelmed by the commotion. I think he was more amused by the rocks he found along the way than the house or the tourists.
Saturday was Truck day at the library, which meant we would certainly be in attendance (with every other toddler, stroller and pregnant family in arlington).

Jackson is currently in a continuous state of rattling off every moving vehicle he knows of. "Twactah (tractor), amboonce, fiah twuck, semee twuck, gahbage twuck, mocycoh (motorcycle), bus, and cah!" encompass most of the common recitations.

Though the fire truck and ambulance were out and about helping people, he was not disappointed with the leftover county trucks. Since the lines were long we only managed to go inside the less popular ones, like this blue utility truck (Mark was pretty sure it was a giant crane--I had NO clue what it was).

 Jackson enjoyed himself all the same.

 We even managed a quick Sunday drive to the Carillon bells--for the best view of the city! (Check out the Lincoln Memorial, Washington Memorial, and the capitol all in a straight line in front of us). The bells [a thank you gift from the Netherlands] play at the top of the hour, so we went thinking we'd get to enjoy a fun little concert. Played turned out to be more like sounded at the top of the hour--saying what time it was. We'll have to go back for a real concert!

We're looking forward to plenty more sporadic and planned outings this summer. Two parents and one toddler who exclaims "WOAH!" every time he sees a rock means we must take advantage of our surroundings!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Boys, Sleepovers and Hairdos

Jackson had his first friend sleepover on Saturday. Bodie's parents were going to a late party and couldn't find a sitter, so we thought it would be fun to just have him spend the night. Since we sport a 2 bedroom house (for which we are very grateful!) we thought we'd try putting them in the same room.

Bodie even brought his own mattress, pillow and two teeny blankets (which was all he allowed to be touching him while he slept).

We knew doubling them up would be on the more thrilling side of sleeping arrangements either had experienced, but we thought we'd give them 45 min or so to get their crazy's out and then they'd crash.

Apparently crashing does not happen when you are in the middle of a jump-a-thon. Or when you let out any kind of sound and the other kid in the room thinks it's hilarious and mimics you perfectly. I suppose I would have a difficult time sleeping in this situation, and I suppose the mimicking is not a habit boys grow out of at sleepovers (it just moves to bodily functions).

So, plan B: pull the most awake child out of the room and let the other fall asleep (hoping awake child calms down and can be snuck in a little later). Yes, this was highly unsuccessful also. Plan C was born around 9:30. We moved Jackson into the pack n' play in our room and Bodie stayed in Jackson's room. This is when crashing occurred, and we kept shaking our heads for not thinking of it earlier.

Amazingly, they both slept well, Bodie only wandered the hall once--4 am--saying "shaunel, shaunel, blanket, blanket." I was pretty impressed he remembered where he was, and held it together to just ask nicely for a lost blanket.

Super lucky for me, it was mother's day the next morning, so Mark got up with the overly anxious boys at 6:45, to play play play.

This was when we discovered Jackson's awesome new hairdo. 

Apparently Bodie's careful nightly head positioning that gives him such an awesome do, is contagious.

We're really looking forward to figuring out how a new baby sister in the room will affect Jackson come August. Should be many great nights of plan D E and F!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012


Boy oh boy. Jackson has hit the realm of highly anticipated birthdays. "Candles, 2, birthday, cake!, and blow", was all he really wanted to talk about. He'll mention it now if it comes up, but he's so distracted by all his cool new toys he doesn't have time for such trivial matters anymore.

SOMEHOW, we were able to capture his excitement on video! He is so difficult to film these days. I adore this video. Mostly because of the "yep" at the very beginning, but also from his 2 year old excitement that's just so hard to contain. 

Jackson got to have his favorite breakfast--muffins--of which he ate 10 (mini's). They were bran with just a little honey, but Mark and I both agreed that he looked significantly chunkier by the end of the day. Lunch was well overshadowed by breakfast, but with Pizza for dinner (tomato and spinach) and cake for dessert, he was a happy boy. He got a fun train set from my mom, of which we have taken out and put back together 3 times a day since it was opened. We were also given a bunch of toys from a friend who was moving, and ta da! Awesome birthday presents for Jackson. We're such indulgent parents ;)

And guess who finally used a small part of her cake decorating set?! The cake was a blast to make, but was not very tasty, so for the first time in my life I threw the leftovers away.

[Most of that was due to Jackson having a terrible cold, with a bad fever and being up all night--night of his b'day. I decided all sugar had to leave the house, or we'd be suffering for weeks!]

All in all, it was simple, lovely and so fun to have a conscious, excited kid enjoy his little celebration.You can revisit his first birthday here. I'd say he's come a long way from his stoic 1 year old self who hated cake.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Energy Begets Energy

7:45 pm each night, Jackson does sprints between our front door and our kitchen. If it's time to read a story he sprints to his room, sprints back with a book, jumps on the couch 5 times and then jumps up to land on his bottom. He squeals with delight over the funniest things while reading the book, and then suddenly, he's in bed, and somehow he's usually asleep by 8:20. Where does that energy suddenly go?

When he wakes up, he'll often pull himself up half awake so he's standing on in his crib, and start jumping. Before he's even totally awake! I am trying to cherish this because I know all too well what happens at age 13, when suddenly energy is thrown out the window.

To help release some of this energy, we've been bringing our "lello cah" to various parks, and sprinting after it. Unfortunately the "gween cah" used to come also, but it has been missing. Jackson's asked about it 20 times already today. Wish I knew where it ended up!

Jackson continues to be famous among his friends for his jumping abilities. He can now jump in circles, backwards and sideways. His jumps are so intense, they remind me of my extreme aerobics videos that use plyometric jumps (squat jumps, lunge jumps) to really get heart rates up.

He also is obsessed with walking along any small sort of retaining wall. Balance certainly requires plenty of energy, so I generally succumb to his sweet "hep pwees" and help him up to walk on the heart thumping walls.


We try and get as much energy out, to hopefully induce enough exhaustion so he'll sit down and do a puzzle or play with a toy. Usually though, the energy release just means more energy to come. As Sister Hall always said "Energy Begets Energy!"