Thursday, September 27, 2007

Walking II

So I shot some footage of Jake walking just one week after he first started. Click here to see the video from last week so you can compare it to this one. What a difference a week makes!

In the video you can see him signing "cat", looking at his bellybutton, shaking his head "no", and signing "laundry".

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

GreenDimes, Walker

Today I signed my household up for GreenDimes to help reduce/eliminate unwanted junk mail. Just a few weeks ago catalogues and other junk mail began pouring through my mail slot! I was NOT happy. I think I had managed to get myself on a no junk mail list... but that was under my old address, so I am all of a sudden on a list somewhere again. Bah! The reason I chose GreenDimes is because for a one time$15 fee they provide you multiple ways to take care of the junk mail problem (and thus reduce paper and help the environment). They send you a kit with postcards to send to junk mailers, they link you to the Direct Marketing Association website to remove your name from that list, AND they check periodically to make sure your name (or any variations of your names and everyone in your household) is still not on the list. If it appears again, they notify you so you can take steps to remove it again. Nice. I hope those catalogues, credit card offers, and coupons stop coming soon.

In other news, the little walker is doing great! I LOVE having him walk all around, makes it so much easier on me (and my back) and he is so happy about it, too. Check the next blog post for another video...
So now he's walking just fine, and is using his walker to practice RUNNING! Oy!
Awhile ago I mentioned that I would post a picture of his walker with the "bumper" I installed on it. I went to the hardware store and brought some of that foam pipe insulation stuff and cut a piece off and taped it to the front of the walker. Thank goodness I did that!!! The bumper is already starting to show wear and tear from all the crashes. If you click to enlarge the picture you can see...

Monday, September 24, 2007

Music Together

Today was Jake's first day of Music Together class. We had a great time!

We walked in and immediately joined the circle of parents and children and the teacher, Claire. She was really good at leading the class and making it easy for everyone. I followed along as best as I could, the hand/body motions were easy and I just sang (softly) when I could. At first Jake was being the observer, and clinging to me. That is okay... I've noticed that is his way in new situations. Check it out before getting comfortable with it.
We went through a few songs, and then scarves came out. We waved them around and had fun with them while listening to music (from an iPod system). I finally got Jake to at least hold onto the scarf, even if he just held it and stared at Claire. Later, though, these wooden shaker eggs that made noise were dumped onto the ground. Jake dived for some as soon as he saw other kids reaching for them. A lot of families take this class every semester (a different instrument is featured each semester, this time it is the flute, an instrument that has long caused me to wince. Oy.) so some of the kids knew exactly what to do. They even knew when the song ended that the eggs must go back into the bin. Not Jake. He sat there hording 3 eggs throughout the song and then when it ended. He protested loudly when I tried to get him to give up the eggs, but I succeeded a few songs later. We'll work on that. Overall it was a very enjoyable experience and I am looking forward to next week's class. At the end of the class Jake was hungry so we were still there after everyone left and while Claire was still there, cleaning. So I introduced myself and let her know that I am deaf, but can hear with a cochlear implant. She was very surprised and commented "I just thought you were the quiet mom." Apparently there is one in every class, but I have a darn good excuse :)

Later, after class we went home and Jake wanted some time outside. He spent about 20 minutes throughly entertaining himself with the dirt from the pot outside, and I was able to wash the dishes while keeping an eye on him! He enjoyed himself, and spread dirt everywhere. When Mike came home and saw the dirt mess outside he asked what had happened. I looked at him and said "we have a boy." Didn't need to explain further.
Notice the dirt on his face. He had to have a shower in the evening. We asked if he wanted a bath, but he actually chose the shower.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Striped Cuteness

This morning I made pancakes. And while I was making them, I realized I could make mini pancakes for Jake! It made me feel happy and giddy to realize that :) Also in this picture he is wearing his smaller sized cute green pajamas.

Here he is wearing one of his new pajamas. I just LOVE this color on him!

Thursday, September 20, 2007

15 Months

Jake says: "Hey, guess what? Today I'm 15 months old and yesterday I started walking! Check me out :)"

Jake is so much fun to be around. He is sweet and smiley most of the time. I love how he laughs when he means "yes". For example, "Jake, do you want some water?" Jake: "haha!" No and yes are very clear right now -- he shakes his head for no and laughs for yes. Pretty sweet!
He is starting to become attached to things. Right now he loves his white polar bear and will ask for it sometimes and then hug it. Awww. The same for his baby doll... sometimes. Other times the doll gets flung aside.
His language development is amazing. He knows even more signs now, including fire, shoes, monkey, and toast. Right now all bread is "toast" whether or not it has been toasted. Additionally, he LOVES to let Mike and me know when the toaster has popped! We like that too.
I had to buy him some new pajamas today as he is outgrowing the ones he has. Wow.
Happy 15 months, Jake! xox

Monday, September 17, 2007

Wildlife Safari

On Sunday the three of us drove down to Winston, Oregon, just south of Roseburg. I had a site visit for work in Roseburg on Monday, so we took advantage of the road trip and visited this Wildlife Safari. It was basically a big drive-through zoo. It was very cool and we saw a lot of animals up close. I took lots of pictures, but picked a few of the better/cooler ones to post here.

A lion and lioness!! (Click to enlarge picture.)
Giraffe -- my favorite.
Buffalo and llamas.
Grizzly bears!!
One of the bears that was in the water... decided to get out of the water and start ambling towards our car. We moved on.
Jake had a great time getting to ride in the front of the car while going through the safari! (10 mph speed limit.) I made him hide the apple when we were in the bear area.
Baby yak. Yakkity yak, don't talk back :)
Camel with a lazy yak.
Rhea (this was in the "Asia" section).
Some kind of Asian deer.
Baby rhea.
Cheetah -- up close!! They have a successful captive cheetah breeding facility here.
Touring the village after going through in the car. Jake LOOOOOOVES cars! There were lots of other animals, too. We saw rhino (and we got a little paper stating to keep driving if rhinos come at or close to the car -- apparently there have been lots of punctured cars and punctured tires from them, eek! Fortunately they seemed to be sleeping when we went through). We also saw elephants, elk, mustang horses, black bears, monkeys, and ducks. There was a petting zoo in the village but we were there right at closing, unfortunately.
The view from our hotel room in Roseburg. Not bad!
In the car on the way back to Portland. Had to stop for a diaper change and some milk and some wiggle time. We were all glad when we arrived home.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Photo Shoot

A lovely MDC Mama, Amy, did a photo shoot for us. These are the first professional pictures we've had since Jake was born! We went to Laurelhurst Park in Portland and it turned out to be a beautiful, sunny day. Lucky us! Amy sent the pictures to us on CD -- I received 90. And here are my favorites:

Little Fish

This morning Jake went to an introductory Little Fishes class that we had signed up for. He got lucky and had a private lesson as no one else came! That was great and he did so well in the water -- went underwater 4 times.

The instructor, Jennifer, was really nice and knew lots of things to do.

We sang a lot of songs and danced in the water. Some of the songs we sang: Wheels on the Bus, Hokey Pokey, and Monkeys Jumping on the Bed. It was funny.

Learning to push off from the wall.

I think we'll sign him up for the full series of classes as he does love the water and seems like he'll be a great swimmer. The classes are every Saturday morning at 9am, which kind of makes me groan, but we have fun once we're there. And Mike and I decided we'd take turns every Saturday, so that one person can have a nice relaxing morning at home and Jake can enjoy this activity with both of us. :)

And some BIG NEWS! Jake WALKED!! We were at Milagros for a lecture on cloth diapers (I went to be with my friend who is learning about them). Jake was all of a sudden standing there examining a toy, and was standing longer than I'd ever seen him stand. Then he took one step and then another, and then grabbed my friend's knee. I was so excited!! Gooooood times coming :)

Friday, September 14, 2007

Entertainment Tonight

Tonight's entertainment consists of a laundry basket, towels that need to be washed (yeah, I know, eww), and shoes. And a cute baby.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Tiny Tots Gym

Today was Jake's first day of class for the Tiny Tots Gym class. He really enjoyed himself. There were about 5 other kids in the class, and one of them was still crawling/only walking with assistance, just like Jake. So we weren't kicked out of the class ;) At the beginning and end of the class a colorful parachute was brought out and we played with it for a bit. Jake wanted nothing to do with it and sat on one of the car toys and observed everything. Maybe that will change as we continue going to the class every week. He really had a good time playing during the class.
Jake got an outfit from Grandma for the first day of this class. It's very cute and was soft and made moving around easy for Jake.
My sunflowers finally bloomed. So pretty!!