Tuesday, April 8, 2014

My Awesome Kid

It's been a while since I posted an update on Evan. Lately the blog seems filled with progress and photos of Connor. Of course, a LOT changes in the first year for a baby and I did post a ridiculous amount of pictures and updates on Evan his first year (and beyond) so I'm hoping it balances out in the end.

Age 5 is ... man, it's something. I could try to describe it, but the words and emotions whirl around in my head nearly as fast as Evan whirls around the room. He is amazing, wonderful, loving, smart, wild, confident, LOUD, creative, and yes, even shy sometimes. As soon as I think I have him figured out where I'm certain I can predict what's next, he surprises me yet again.

Case in point. Evan has had to endure many changes the past year. New preschool, new summer camp program, starting Kindergarten, new baby brother (and sharing parental focus), changing rooms, interim teacher, new teacher, substitute teacher while his other teacher is on maternity leave, and listing our house for sale, to name just the 'bigger' things. Adjusting to full day Kindergarten was hard. Academically, there are no issues. Strictly based on what his teacher has told us and taking off the rose-colored parenting glasses, Evan is smart. He reads. He writes. He loves math. But Evan wants to do most of these things on *his* terms. I think in his head he knows what he's supposed to do. But being able to control his actions is difficult. So he sings, or talks, or flails. We recently stumbled upon a great book that describes being five to a T -- It's Hard to Be Five by Jamie Lee Curtis. Written for kids, but it's one of those books that the parent really gets as much out of (if not more) than the kid.

"It's hard to be five. Just yelled at my brother.
My mind says do one thing. My mouth says another."

"At five, I hear NO and DON'T - I can't win! -
when balls bowl inside at my ten juice box pins."

"It's hard to be five. All I want is to play.
I'm starting at school and I don't get a say.
School seems so scary, school seems so strange.
I'm only 5, my whole world's gonna' change."

Evan's never yelled at his brother, although I'm sure that will come as Connor gets older.

Otherwise pretty much all of this applies. Good days. Not-so-good days. Bad days. Then a couple of weeks ago, I got an email from Evan's current teacher telling me he'd been named Student of the Month. STUDENT OF THE MONTH! I was in the middle of Target (my second home) and made it to the car before I teared up. I know he's smart and amazing and loving and all those things I listed above, but for a long time I've felt like so much of the good has been lying in the shadow of the not-so-good. And finally someone (else) recognized the good. She saw that he is/was trying so very hard.

We weren't quite sure what to do. Isn't that funny? We had game plans for other reports from school, but not this one. I forwarded the email to Dan and had picked up Evan when he called me back. I was trying to play it cool so Evan wouldn't know what we were talking about. But he heard me tell Dan that I nearly cried when I read the note. After hanging up the phone, Evan tells me "mom, it's ok if you cry. I won't judge."

Evan was awarded for exemplifying the character word for March: Honesty.

That's my boy.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

6 Month Charmer

Six months! Half a year! As in, he's as close to being one as he is to being a newborn. I can barely believe it. Despite all the nuances of having a newborn, from sleep deprivation to changing family dynamics, it is my favorite stage of babyhood. So I'm a little sad to see it fading away as Connor gets older. He is, of course, still fully dependent on us for everything, but he's exploring the world around him a little more every day. He checked off several milestones between five and six months, just for good measure, including:

- Rolling over
- TWO teeth! (viewable in the second video below!)
- First curl

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-Aaaaaalmost sitting up. He can do it, but needs a little support to stay that way.

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-Started day care. This one makes me a little sad because with this comes the onslaught of illnesses. This is his third week and we're on illness #2. Blah. But his teachers are wonderful and I know he's in good hands.

-First food! We started rice cereal right at six months. He's also since tried oatmeal, sweet potatoes, and pears. Much like his big brother, he loves everything....so far.

He was officially six months on St. Patrick's Day. I love his little laid back style...

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...and sweet smile. Happy half year, sweet pea.

Friday, March 14, 2014


I can't believe it took us 5+ months to take a picture of the four of us together. Some days that feels like the story of our life - lots of trading off of who goes out, and who stays home with the kids. Eventually I'd like to get a family session done, for now I love our snapshots too.

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Tuesday, March 4, 2014

5 Months

I forgot to post the pictures I took of Connor in his "5 Month" onesie in the chair. I did these with Evan to mark his growth over the first year and am trying to keep up doing the same with Connor.

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Sadly, what I haven't been very good about is getting IN the pictures with my boys. So despite my tired eyes, lack of make-up, and hair in desperate need of new highlights, I had Dan take a few. The boys' expressions in this one made the whole thing just perfect.

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Even worse is the fact that we haven't had a single picture of the four of us together since the day we left the hospital. I realized it doesn't have to be a special occasion and we don't have to be dressed up. I want to remember us as we are. So my mom snapped a few last week that I'll add as soon as I download them from my camera card.

I'll have more to report on Connor's progress in his six month update in a couple of weeks. But for now, a video of our now rolling-over little dude!

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

February Round-Up

Shew. That's Southern for expressing busy, y'all. I could write several separate blog posts to cover the last two weeks of February, but I'm going to take the easy road and cover it in one fell swoop. I'll also try to limit idioms to two per sentence.

After seeing my newsfeed crawling with adorable Valentine's Day photos I decided to set up a quick blanket backdrop and get a few photos of the boys. Connor is doing as babies will do and getting bigger every day. Where's my itty bitty boy with the skinny legs and blonde sideburns? He's chewing on EVERY thing so I anticipate there will be teeth to show off soon.

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The trouble with taking photos of babies isn't getting their attention, but getting them to look at the camera and smile at the same time.

I've discovered the sure bet for getting my 5-year-old to *want* to have his photo taken: start taking pictures of his younger brother. Every baby shoot ends with sibling photos.

My friend, Heidi, brought her baby girl, Veronica, over to take some 3-month photos. Such a sweet girl! I loved her little expressions.

Connor and Veronica are seven weeks apart. I'm envisioning some park play dates in our future.

Since I already had my backdrop set up, Dan asked me to take some new headshot photos for his talent agency profile, and while I was at it I decided to go ahead and get some 5-month photos of Connor.

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Our cats sleep on the couch 23 hours a day and are awake approximately one hour to eat and photo bomb. Connor LOVED this.

I love my boys.

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Evan let me take one photo of just him, then he was out of the frame at full speed. The shirt says it all.