Thursday, April 28, 2011

nanny reflections

Gabriel turned 4 this week.  Milestones like that make me realize how quickly time flies.  It seems like just yesterday that I was introducing myself to him and his sweet big sister, on my first day of work.  I want to spend a few minutes pausing and reflecting on what the last four years as a nanny has been like..... 

My first day, August 2007
Riley - 3
Gabriel - 3 months

I was about three weeks into my married life when I started getting to snuggle with this little guy four days a week.  It made me really crave having babies of my own, but it also encouraged me to wait until it was the right time for us to start our own little family.  Babies are so awesome, and I have loved being able to watch him grow up.



eating birthday cake

exploring the world 

no longer a baby but a toddler....

summer fun!

Christmas celebrations....

birthday parties

Being a nanny has become so much more than just a job, and actually more of a lifestyle.  I feel like just another member of the family, a big sister, or a cousin....and I love being able to have that special role in these amazing kiddos' lives.

And now they get to have a role in my kid's life.  It's pretty awesome. 

Really awesome actually. 

So happy birthday Gabe.  You are a great kid!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

such a morning baby!

This little dude loves mornings.  I think I capture some of the best pictures of him when he is still in his jammies, and just thrilled to be starting out his day!  (It usually takes mom a cup or two of coffee to catch up to him......)

While I am a little sad to say good-bye to the footed sleepers......there are some adorable two-piece jammies out there.  I think he looks like such a big boy.

I love seeing those little toes hanging out!  Soon it will be warm enough to sleep in just a diaper, oh summer, please come soon!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

mommy's favorite baby gadget

Normally the role of researching, acquiring and then reviewing gadgets falls to my hubby.  He is the one who loves to constantly be trying something new and current.  I, on the other hand, am the one who loves to continue using the product that I already know how to use and I tend to be skeptical of new gadgets.

When I briefly mentioned to one of my dearest mom-friends that Hendrix was getting to be a little wild man in the tub, and that he had actually slipped out of my hubby's grip and nose-dived last week, she asked me if I had ever heard of one of these:

I had not.  And I will have to admit that i was a little bit skeptical about it.  But she had one that she was willing to let me borrow, and I figured that there wasn't any harm in giving it a try.   It took a long time for Hendrix to warm up to taking a bath in the first place (he showered with either his daddy or I for the first several months of his life), and I really want him to be able to continue to enjoy them.  safely. 

The bottom of this little seat has four suction cups on it, and while I am told that it doesn't work very well in tubs that have texture on the bottom, ours doesn't, and the seat sticks to it like glue.  It is very secure.  I tried hard to move it before placing him in it.  

He also tried hard to move it while he was in it, by lunging and reaching for the farthest away toys.  It didn't budge.  

I think this is going to give mommy lots of peace of mind.  

Hendrix gives it a thumbs up! ;)

Monday, April 25, 2011

happy birthday grandma!

Hendrix helped me pick out the perfect birthday cake to have at a special birthday party for his Grandma Nancy last weekend.  He also told me that he thought she would enjoy some fresh flowers to make it look and feel like spring!

He picked out her present too, which was a webcam so we can communicate with each other through skype.   

I think I have mentioned before that we started skyping so we could stay connected with my sister while she was studying abroad in London last fall; but now that we have it we like to skype with our family that lives just an hour away too!  It is a great way to share how much Hendrix is growing on a regular basis, and it is so easy that I don't mind just making a quick five minute call while I am waiting for dinner to be ready. 

Grandpa Jon brought up a mallet that he crafted to use with this really awesome wooden toy that used to be my hubby's when he was little.  Hendrix paid close attention to Grandpa's demonstration, and then he tackled the gift wrap instead of the mallet!

This toy is really cool, and I am already thinking about how I want to utilize it as a 'prop' in some photos with Hendrix.   I think he is going to love all the racket that he can make with it when he finally gets the hang of it.  :)

 Caught this really precious moment of these two playing together in the afternoon.  

And then we all had some chuckles when the trick candles kept relighting on us!  They had just been in our drawer with the other candles and I think my hubs was just as surprised as my mother-in-law when they relit! 

What a fabulous lazy Saturday.  Hendrix sure knows how to throw a great party!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

hendrix's hoppy easter

Our morning started out really early, as we gave Hendrix his Easter basket before we headed off to the sunrise service at our church at 6:30 a.m.  Hendrix loved his new books, jammies and fruit puffs; though the grass in the basket was probably the most interesting toy of all.  

We spent the rest of the day with various parts of our family, enjoying meals, gifts and egg hunts.  :)  We were blessed with really mild weather, and though it was a bit cool, it was at least sunny.

He did like the eggs, but he was really more interested in trying to eat the mulch than gathering the eggs.  Not sure where this kid gets these ideas!

He enjoyed some time at his great-grandparent's house in the afternoon, and was very pleased to make a new friend.  Seems like babies and toddlers are always drawn to other babies and toddlers.  Must be fun to be little together!

Hendrix thoroughly enjoyed his first Easter!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

wiggle worm

Hendrix likes to hang out in our bed in the mornings while I am getting ready for the day.  Sometimes he snuggles up and takes a little snooze, but most of the time he likes to be surrounded by toys playing.  (I am still getting used to crawling into my bed only to land uncomfortably on a block or book......)

While he hasn't really shown much interest in crawling or even pulling himself up to things, he sure is getting really good at stretching and reaching.  He finds a way to get the toys that he wants that are just a bit too far out of reach.

I try really hard to not intervene, though sometimes it is difficult as he clearly expresses his dissatisfaction and frustration.  I try to encourage him and soothe him, but let him try and even try again so he can learn how to problem-solve and even get the motivation to become more mobile.  Usually he can figure out a way, after several attempts, and then he is absolutely thrilled with himself!  

Great job big boy!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

frozen veishea

I had really been looking forward to taking Hendrix to his first parade.  Veishea is a week-long, campus-wide celebration at Iowa State University, and the grand finale of the week is the parade on Saturday morning.  There are generally lots of participants from various businesses in town, clubs and colleges from campus, and of course, creative floats designed by the houses in the Greek community.   The candy overload is intense.  The colors are vibrant.  The marching band plays.  It is alot of fun.

Here are a few pictures from last year's veishea parade which we attended with some family friends:


This year was a bit of a letdown.  The weather was crummy (35 degrees, overcast and very windy), and the parade itself was short and not very noteworthy.  (I wonder if people backed out at the last minute because of the weather?).  We still went.  We bundled up in many layers and froze our rear ends off to sit out there and watch Hendrix's first parade.  I only regret that I have no proof as it was so cold I couldn't get my hubby to take his hands out of his pockets long enough to snap any pictures.  :(  That's okay - we probably would have been grimacing!

After the parade, it did warm up a bit and we walked around campus enjoying some family friendly activities.  Hendrix saw lots of animals in the petting zoo....

and got to see the spring football game (which is just a scrimmage).

I can't wait to take him to some football games this fall.  Our house is just a few blocks from the stadium and it will be a perfect walk!

Veishea, I still love you, but I hope for nicer weather next year!