Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Baby fishing

Have you been wondering where we've been? Me, too. I'm pretty sure we've just been busy with Christmas celebrations and family, but this has been one busy month. The girls are off from school for 2 weeks, and we've been keeping them occupied with everything from a visit from family to trips downtown. Tim and I are exhausted, but the kids seem to be powering through it.

Today, Kate went baby fishing. Luke loved this new sport.

A day at the Adventuredome.

And now Luke is crying, so I'll have to write about Christmas in another post.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

All about Luke

We've had such a whirlwind of events over the past month, that I have failed to chronicle Luke's recent accomplishments. Just after we got back from Tucson, Luke started crawling. He is taking after big sister Kate in this regard; she crawled at 7 1/2 months, and he crawled at almost 8 months. About a week and a half later, he started holding onto things by himself, and then started pulling himself up on everything just after he turned 8 months old. I walked into his room to check on him during his morning nap, and found him whimpering, "stuck" standing up in his crib. We had an emergency lower-the-crib session that night.

Now he pulls up on everything he can get his hands on (your leg, the steps [his favorite], the cat, the Christmas tree [kidding; he is far too fascinated by the lights to try to pull up on it, yet]), and is even using some of the push-toys on his own. Kate walked at 9 months, so I am anticipating this with Luke. I still have not figured out what to do with our abnormally-railed stairs, and fear we will have to resort to using those super-yard baby gates to fence off the whole area. He uses his head as a third hand, leaning it against something to gain leverage to stand up. He takes his share of spills, but keeps trying until he achieves his goal. Luckily for me, he isn't fully aware of what he is capable of.

He has been saying 'DADADADADA' for weeks, but recently put together the sounds every mom wants to hear: 'MAMAMAMA'. Sadly, he generally only uses this latter sound when he's sad and crying about something.

He is eating semi-solid foods, and particularly loves yogurt melts and cheese puffs. Also on top of the list is regular vanilla yogurt and anything with sugar.

Enjoying dark chocolate gelato in Tucson.

Monday, December 14, 2009

A week of parties

First visit with Santa, at the 561st Christmas party.

The school Christmas concert. Kate is the tall blonde in black on the left, and Claire is in red and white on the bottom row, turned around to look at her big sister. She spent most of the concert in this position.

Erika, Megan and me at Blue Martini on patch night.

A pile of sugar on a red cookie. Gross. Even she must have thought it was icky, because she later licked the frosting off and left the cookie.

The 422 Christmas party.

Candy canes. They love them.

Books from Santa at the 422 party.

At Pure on graduation night.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

Half Marathon: check

I have not a single photo of the event, due to my refusal to carry a camera for 13.1 miles, and to various children's tardiness, willful disobedience, dragging of feet, and lethargy, but I ran my first half marathon this morning!

Even though it's Las Vegas and it's warmer here than in many other parts of the country at this time of year, it was still freezing at the 6:15am start line. I stayed downtown last night (at Excalibur; you can imagine the girls' amazement. Claire: "Where are you sleeping, Mommy?" Me: "At the castle, Claire!" BIG. EYES.) to avoid what was sure to be pure chaos trying to drive to the strip where 28,000 runners were converging on the inaugural event. It was my first time staying without any of my children (besides births of children, which, frankly, do not count) in several years. I got an excellent night of sleep, after my anxiety receded and I actually fell asleep. I set all of my alarms for 5am, not having used any of them prior to this. At 5:00 I was greeted by my cell phone, PDA, running watch and the hotel's alarm clock. My neighbors might have hated me.

I found my way, by following the hordes, to the start "area" on the strip in front of Mandalay Bay. I watched the fireworks go off at the starting time, and inched my way up to the start for another 40 minutes. Next time, I will be sure to register for a closer corral, especially since I was passing walkers before mile 2.

I ditched my RHS gymnastics sweatshirt (circa 1989) around mile 5, and my hat around mile 7. I was super glad for my gloves, as I wore them the entire race. I ran and ran and ran, slowing down for an occasional drink, and grabbing some Gu at mile 9. I never stopped, fearing that I wouldn't be able to start again. I saw places on the strip that I didn't know existed. I saw casinos I want to go into, and some I would rather not. I witnessed the eruption of the volcano at the Mirage, which was fun and warm. I ran an entire mile north of the Stratosphere, the northernmost casino on the strip. From there, they directed us west into neighborhoods I had never been in, and likely will never see again (the area north of the Stratosphere is notoriously dangerous). Finally, just before mile 9, we rejoined the strip. Mentally, this was huge, and I was so happy to see the Stratosphere. Somehow, adrenaline kicked in at about mile 10, and I picked up the pace for the last 3.1 miles. I finished in 2:11:00, and am proud of my time!

Thank you, Tim, for helping me complete this milestone. I couldn't have done it without you. You're next!

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Thanksgiving in Tucson

I have barely unpacked, let alone found the camera and cord to download our photos from last week, so that will have to come later. Right now I'm in a tizzy trying to figure out how to pack approximately 2,548 things into the next 3-4 weeks. The holiday stress fun has begun!

We drove to Tucson the weekend before Thanksgiving, and spent the whole week with my sister and her family. The kids were in HEAVEN. The parents were mildly amused. All in all, it went well, minus the sleep thing. The title to this post could also be:

  • Does Not Sleep Well Away From Home (mostly Luke)

There are a lot of other good titles out there, actually. Maybe I'll just use titles to tell you about our trip.

  • Birthday Parties and Turkey, Oh My! (Happy First Birthday, Lucy!)
  • Our First Black Friday Shopping Trip, by Jessica and Jennifer
  • Mmmmm, Good Beer
  • Mmmmm, Excellent Mexican Food
  • Mmmmm, Turkey, Stuffing, Habanero Mashed Potatoes...you get the idea
  • Oops, I Messed Up My Running Schedule; I hope 9 Miles Instead of 10 Will Not Destroy Me Next Weekend
  • Yay, Bookmans!
  • WHY Do We Always Get Stuck at the Hoover Dam?
  • Seriously, We Have to Drive All the Way Back to Kingman to Go Around the Damn Dam?
  • Tucson to Las Vegas: the Longest Trip Yet (30 Hours)
  • Can Everyone Just Be Healthy For Like a Week? Please?

I finally ordered our Christmas cards. Hopefully you will receive them before Christmas.

Christmas shopping! Aggggggghhhhhhhh! Christmas tree? Not yet. Maybe next week? Why does everything happen at once?

Now we're off to the dentist for the girls' first teeth cleaning. I've been trying to talk it up. There are movies there! The dentist is so nice! He will tell you to say 'aaaaahhh'. Can you say 'aaaaahhhh'? Yay! I'll let you know how it goes.