Friday, August 31, 2012

About AJ - Ten months

Amelia Jayne turned 10 months old on Friday, August 24. She's growing so quickly!!

 Here are some of the things she's up to this month.

 She's cruising everywhere. She holds on to her table toys, the coffee table, the footstool, chairs, anything that's tall enough for her to stand and hold on to, and she walks around and around. She pulls up on everything, too. She wants to be upright these days, though her preferred way to get around is still crawling. She's fast, too!

We had a playdate with a couple of different friends this week and she just loved them! She interacts with them, shares kisses, and gets so excited when she's around other kids. It's so precious!

She especially loved being around her cousins a couple of weeks ago at the beach. They're all kids ranging from 4 - 15 and they doted on her and loved on her so much. She just ate up all the attention!

She doesn't like to wear dresses anymore. Now that she's crawling (everywhere!) it slows her down too much and she gets very frustrated. I'm a little sad because I just love to put her in little dresses! But I won't wish this time to pass because before long she'll be walking and running!

She had her first bout with diaper rash this past week. I believe she's teething again, soon to gain two more teeth on the bottom. That will give her a total of eight teeth. She doesn't have them yet, so she  has a total of six teeth right now.

Her new favorite food is blueberries! I cut them in half and she picks them up and eats them all by herself. She is so funny about them because she just scrunches up her little nose with joy and pops them in her mouth. She is getting better with textures. I've realized that she doesn't have nearly the problems with textures that I thought she has - she's just kind of picky about what she eats!

Eating blueberries

She and Xander have come to a few impasses lately. He feels like he needs to be her parent or "the boss" lately and he'll take things away from her or knock her down to make sure she doesn't do what she's "not supposed to do." I've had to really watch the two of them together since Xander gets far too rough with her than I would like. Sometimes she doesn't mind when he wrestles with her or tickles her roughly, but she does not like for him to snatch things out of her hands. That being said, you can imagine how many conversations about sharing, taking care of yourself, and keeping your hands to yourself that have gone on at the Little house. :)

She says "uh oh" now! I tried to get a video a couple of weeks ago at Mimi's house. She started to say it at the beginning of the video, but stopped and got fussy as soon as she saw me.

She's such a joy! She sleeps well, eats well (except when she wants to be picky), nurses well, is fairly easy-going and just does whatever we ask of her. If she doesn't get a nap, she'll just wait and get it later or she might just go to bed early. I love that baby girl!

For the past 10 months I've been using the same bow and this is the first time I've ever had a hard time with her pulling it off! I could barely get a picture without her tugging at it.

Summer recap - beach time with the Walker fam

Early in August we went to the beach with my family. There are 20 of us who stay in the same house. It's crazy and chaotic and I love it! It's fun for a week - I don't think I could do much longer, but it's nice to see everyone and visit with folks I love very much but only get to see once a year.

We've been doing this for 20 years now. Mom and JD have been married for 21 years and we started this tradition the year after they got married, in 1992. For the 20th year, Mom and JD decided we should celebrate by having a beach front home. It was wonderful! It was especially great for me and my family since my kids are still so young. We could go down to the beach for a little while and come back after 30 or 45 minutes and we didn't have to pack up a whole load of stuff. We could also hang out in the pool and not feel so separated from everyone else if they were down at the beach. It was perfect!

We started this tradition before any of us kids were married, when it was just Mom, JD, Sean, Robyn, Erin and I. Then we started getting married and having kids and the tradition continued. It's something I look forward to every year. My mom told me this year that she and JD had always said they would provide the house every year as long as they could afford to and until we all decided we no longer wanted to do it anymore. She said she's really pretty surprised that we still all want to do it, but each family looks forward to the get-together each summer and we'll continue to for as long as possible! It's been so wonderful to stay in touch with my TX family in this way. I certainly owe a big thanks to Mom and JD for making this happen! 
All 20 of us
Each individual family is pretty much grouped together, if you're wondering who goes with whom. :)

Papa, Mimi and the grandkids
The grandkids

Aunt B and Grandma came up for a few days, too. They stayed in a different place - they're not quite brave enough to bunk with the rest of us. I don't really blame them. :)

My siblings and I
The wind was awful, so my hair was awful

My siblings and their spouses
Front row: My sister Erin, me, my SIL Jill, my stepsister Robyn and her husband Kelly
Back Row: My BIL Nathan, David, and my stepbrother Sean


I attended a workshop yesterday at work on how to use some equipment that we have at the library called ReadyANIMATOR. It's a way to make stop motion animation. It's very fun and I think the kids are going to love using it. I'm looking forward to creating a program so I can use it with them.

It consists of some white boards, an iPod touch and the base to set everything up. There are props and materials that come in the box that are to be used in making the film. First we came up with a topic for our story and then created the story itself. Then, using an animation app, we took individual pictures of each movement. At the end we dropped it into iMovie and added music.

Two of my other co-workers and I created this film. We didn't have long to work on it, probably about 15-20 minutes, so it's entirety is five seconds. It makes you appreciate how long it must take to make a full-length movie! :)

Here is another video done by a co-worker at IMG - Rene Kimray did this program with some kids. Here is the final product.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Romans 5:1-5

 Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we[a] have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2 through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we[b] boast in the hope of the glory of God. 3 Not only so, but we[c] also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; 4 perseverance, character; and character, hope. 5 And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.

Verse 5 in the NLT reads like this:
"And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love."

My hope is in you, Lord.

I kind of stole the following prayer from Patrick, but it just hit home and I've been thinking about it a lot over the last few weeks. Thanks for sharing it, Patrick.

"My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going.

I do not see the road ahead of me.
I cannot know for certain where it will end.
Nor do I really know myself,
and the fact that I think I am following your will
does not mean that I am actually doing so.
But I believe that my desire to please you does in fact please you.

And I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire.
And I know that if I do this,
you will lead me by the right road
though I may know nothing about it.

Therefore will I trust you always,
though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death.
I will not fear, for you are ever with me,
and you will never leave me to face my struggles alone.”

- Thomas Merton (1915-1968)

Stand up!

Amelia Jayne is growing up so fast! She's not walking yet, but she stood up a couple of weeks ago.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Granddaddy's famous!

My Dad was featured in a newspaper article. You can read the full story here.

Growing up

My niece, Kaitlyn, started 3rd grade and my nephew, Patrick, started 1st grade today! I just can't believe how quickly they're growing up! Here are some pics from my sister. I love those kids!

Summer recap - Amazing Castle

I took Xander to ImaginOn a couple of times this summer. They had an exhibit there that he fell in love with. It was called the Amazing Castle. It was set up as a medieval village where you could travel around and visit the cobbler, the tailor, a garden, a medieval kitchen, see a dragon, etc. He had the most fun in the kitchen cooking at the spit and the cauldron. It was a lot of fun!

Summer recap - water fun

A local sprayground that Xander visited with Daddy while I worked one Saturday. Fun!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Summer recap - 4th of July

We really didn't do anything on the actual 4th of July. My kids are still so young that I didn't think they would appreciate the loud noise. Plus, all the good stuff happens after dark which is way past their bedtime. Xander's usually asleep by 7:30 or 8, and Amelia Jayne is asleep between 7 and 7:30.

The kids and I spent the day at Mimi and Papa's house just to hang out and enjoy the day. David decided to work that day since we didn't have anything big planned. Sometimes he likes working on holidays since there's much less distraction and he can usually get a lot of work accomplished.

Once the kids and I got home, I snapped some pictures of my cute little Independence Day kids. :)

Some holiday kisses. :)

Summer recap - Singing

Xander loves to sing and has some favorites that he shared with me back in June.

"Stereo Hearts" by Gym Class Heroes featuring Maroon 5

"We Are Young" by Fun.

"I Can Do the Right Thing" (a song he learned at church)

Friday, August 17, 2012

Summer recap - Last Day of School

This is the last day of school - the Thursday before Memorial Day.

Last day of school

Xander's end-of-year program

Xander and his wonderful teacher, Ms. Jean. He just loves her!!