Saturday, April 30, 2011

Clutching A Dog Biscuit

This time, somebody else is in jail.

Can I Buy You A Drink?

A few days after the Jones family returned from China, Lucia and Magdalena came over to play.  Jude and Lucia shared some chocolate milk, one of Jude's favorite treats.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Diaper Source

I've been meaning to post this for a while now.  If you don't buy disposable diapers, you can stop reading right now...:)

We'd been buying diapers from Costco after doing some research and deciding they were the least-expensive good-quality diapers out there.  A few months ago, I signed up for Amazon Mom, a free service from Amazon (where I shop often) which gives you a free Prime membership for a few months (Prime gives you free shipping even without the $25 minimum order).  Note this is available to Dads or anyone else, despite the name.

After I joined, I found out that having the Amazon Mom membership also gives a 30% discount on diapers, if you use their "Subscribe and Save" service.  I calculated the per-diaper price, and even with coupons from Costco this is a better deal.  Also, the packages are smaller than Costco, which is nice when you're about to switch from one size to another, and they are delivered to your door for free, which is nice when you don't feel like going to Costco just for diapers.

I realize this sounds like an advertisement, but I just wanted to share this with any other parents (or grandparents) who might be reading and could take advantage of the prices.  I'll include a link below to the diapers that we use.  Full disclosure: I did use my affiliates account to create these links, so if you click on them I might get some money.  Although I have never gotten anything yet from an affliliates link!

Huggies Snug and Dry Diapers, Size 4, 140 Count ($21.45 after discount, as of today)

Huggies Snug and Dry Diapers, Size 6, 100 Count ($22.93 after discount, as of today)

Hope this helps!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Little Things: Ada, One Year

Today is Ada's First Birthday!  Our girl is such a delight.  She is happy, adventurous, social, and in general has such a sunny personality.  We're really relishing these days and weeks where she is so easy-going and fun.  We hope to remember these times once the tantrums start happening...:)  Here are some details about Ada at this age...

Moving: Ada took her first steps at her birthday party over the weekend (April 23)!  It was very exciting, and I was happy that I got to witness this event (I expected it to happen when I wasn't around).  Of course, she still prefers to crawl to get from place to place quickly, but I know it is just a matter of weeks before she's walking everywhere.  She can stand with ease, and goes from sitting to standing constantly throughout the day.

Communication: Ada says a lot of words.  The most obvious one is "Out!".  This is what she says when she's frustrated with a situation.  She also says "Jude", "Dad", "Bot-toe" (for bottle), "Rada", "Bye-Bye", and many others.  She is also very expressive and uses signs and body language to get her point across.  It's usually pretty easy to figure out what she wants and needs.

Teeth: Ada sprouted four new teeth in a two-day period last week!  I think it was pretty painful for her, because she was kind of cranky for a few days and only felt better when we gave her some infant ibuprofen.  She now has eight teeth, four on the top and four on the bottom.

Tricks:  Ada's most endearing habit these days is giving kisses.  All we have to do is say the word "kiss", and she'll smack her lips in our direction.  This never gets old.  Ada also loves playing "How Big is Ada? So Big!", stretching her arms up over her head.  Jude gets into this one too.  See the photo below.  She also does a lot of clapping and dancing.  She seems to be a bit of a daredevil like Jude, and loves being swung around, flying over our heads, and sitting in the tree in our front yard.

Toys:  Unlike Jude, Ada really seems to love stuffed animals and her doll Rada.  She'll play with little plush toys for a long time, talking with them and burying her face in their bodies.  She doesn't seem to have a specific comfort object yet, but she does like to sleep at night with her blankie and Rada.

Consuming: Ada has recently begun to enjoy drinking water out of a sippy cup.  She drinks with all of her meals, and also sometimes in between.  She also has a bottle when she wakes up in the morning and as part of her falling-to-sleep routine before naps and bedtime.  We're currently mixing formula and whole milk, and will switch to just milk soon.  She continues to be a good eater, mostly eating finger foods but still some spoon-feeding.  She really likes blueberries, cheese, bread, and tofu.  She is not too fond of egg yolks, which is funny because Jude also prefers to eat just the whites.

Sleeping: Ada sleeps pretty well these days.  She is down to one nap almost every day now, although she might take two naps from time to time.  She goes to bed at about the same time as Jude, and wakes up at around 7am most mornings.  She rarely needs us in the night unless she is sick.  What a difference from six months, or even three months ago!

Size: Ada weighs a little over 20 pounds, and wears mostly 12-month clothing.  She is in size 4 diapers and still wears the size 6-12 month soft-soled shoes.  She seems to be pretty average sized, compared with Jude who was always really big for his age.  We'll get the official measurements at her appointment with Dr. Jack next week.

Here are a few recent photos.  Dancing with Dad at her birthday party.

On the back porch with Ama.

Jude and Ada are SO BIG.

Just hangin' out on the back porch.

Getting ready to party with Nini.

Kiddos in their chairs.

Cupcakes?  I'd rather eat fruit!

Happy Birthday, Little Lady!

Monday, April 25, 2011

First Birthday Celebration

Although Ada is officially one tomorrow, we celebrated her birthday over the weekend.

The day started with a gift from Nini and Ama - a spotted lavender chair to match Jude's Spiderman chair.  Here is a video of Ada's first ride in the new chair.

And I can't resist this cute photo of Ada in her chair.

Activities at the party included sandbox time...

Easter Egg hunt...

Dance Party...


And, of course, cupcakes...

Our goal for the party was for Ada to enjoy herself; I think we succeeded in that.  And I think everyone else had a pretty good time too!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

More Manzanita

Miles took some great photos at the beach.  Jude and Dad running down the dunes.

Jude climbing back up, trying not to get his hands in the sand.

Playing in the dune grasses.

Boy bath.  Jude didn't want his photo taken.

Live crab race.

Group shot of the three cooperative children.

In other news, Jude solved his first math problem tonight.  He had four "pasta swords", and I asked him how many he would have if he gave one of them to me.  He thought about it for a few seconds, then looked at his four fingers, folded one of the fingers down, and said "this many!", then counted the three remaining fingers.  I was pretty blown away by that one.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Manzanita Beach Boy

We spent a long weekend at the beach last month.  We lucked out with a fantastic rental house, right on the beach, and unseasonably sunny weather.  Jude had a blast playing in the dunes and on the beach.  I love this series of photos from one sunny morning.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

March Books

Here's a quick recap of the books I read in March.  I seem to be getting a lot of recommendations from Sharon's blog lately.  In the first three months of this year, I've read 17 books, which puts me on track for almost 70 for the year.  It definitely helps that I have a lot of books on my list to read and also that the kids are sleeping more consistently, which gives me a few hours most evenings to read.  E Ben often goes out when the kids are asleep while I stay home, curled up on the couch with a good book.  We're both happy with that arrangement...

  1. (3/5) Secrets of Eden (Chris Bohjalian) - I read Midwives (by the same author) a few years ago and really enjoyed it.  I picked this book up off the shelf when I was at the library a few weeks ago, something that I almost never do, and I’m glad that I did.  Although I guessed the ending pretty early on, I don’t think it was very obvious and I enjoyed reading the different points of view.  Well done social drama mystery novel.
  2. (3/12) Troubled Waters (Sharon Shinn) - This was a recommendation from Sharon.  I loved it!  This is exactly the kind of fantasy novel that drags me along with it into a new world with new rules and a new way of thinking, which somehow seem to make sense immediately.  I read almost the whole book on a flight from Portland to New York, and the rest of it (late) the next night.
  3. (3/14) Something Borrowed (Emily Giffin) - My sister loaned this book to me for my flight home from New York.  This is her favorite author, and there is a strong similarity with her other favorites, like Jennifer Weiner.  This was a fun read, and when I finished it with an hour to go in the flight, I started again from the beginning (which was a lot more meaningful the second time around).
  4. (3/26) South of Broad (Pat Conroy) - I didn’t know that Pat Conroy had a new book out until I read about it on Sharon’s blog.  I’ve read a few of his other books, and I think this is one of the better ones.  I do have to chuckle every time certain themes reappear (as they do in every book of his I have read): overuse of the word “damaged”, twin characters, food preparation, the healing power of spending time on the water, Southern culture being so different from the rest of the country/world.  I did enjoy it, however, and would recommend to people who liked his earlier novels.

Monday, April 4, 2011


I'm having a major problem with posting photos from Picasa lately.  Here are the ones that I tried to post with Ada's eleven-month entry.

Here is a great shot of Ada's big blue eyes. My weekly Babycenter e-mail said that her eyes are unlikely to change color at this point, so I think that we can count on having a blue-eyed daughter. Jude has my eyes and Ada has her dad's eyes.

So happy, playing in the sun at the coast over the weekend.

This one-knee, one-foot stance is one of her favorites these days.

Ada is great at playing by herself and exploring to find toys. She'll pull out anything of interest and study it, pick it up, throw it around, chew on it, and then eventually move on to the next thing.