Monday, December 31, 2012

My Project 365: 2013 Edition

Every year I make some loose New Year's resolutions with varying success.  This year I want to learn a new skill - how to actually use our fancy DSLR camera.  I have taken some great photos with it, usually in a preprogrammed mode. 

To learn how to use it better I have invested in an e-book titled Beyond Snapshots by Devine and Mazey and I am going to do my own Project 365 and post a photo each day.  I like the way that Capture Your 365 has a monthly inspiration list that I can follow, but don't have to be tied to.  Most photos will probably be of my dear little boy, LWK, and my husband J.

I will be using a combination of our Nikon D90 (the camera I want to learn to actually use), my Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS6 (the one I currently use most of the time) and my iPhone 5.    By this time next year, I hope to have a daily diary of our little life together and a better understanding of our cameras!

2012 Year in Review

2012 was a busy year for our family.  LWK has been an absolute joy and even though he can be stubborn and challenging, his stellar personality comes out even in the worst of situations.

Highlights of 2012:
LWK learning to talk
J getting a promotion into management
Welcoming our nephew James into the world
LWK turning 1
A trip to Hawaii for J and S's wedding
LWK's first Roadtrip to Canada
LWK learning to walk
LWK taking swim lessons
L getting to stay at one school all day - no more travelling

Lowlight of 2012:
LWK being admitted to Children's Hospital for pneumonia.

All in all, it was a pretty good year with far more highlights than lowlights!

What we are looking forward to in 2013:
New Windows
A new car for J
More daredevil behavior from LWK

Sunday, December 30, 2012

New Christmas 2012

We had our third, and final, Christmas this morning with the Stones and Keatons.  Grandma and Grandpa came and so did Aunt Julie, Uncle Chris, Cousin Joel and Cousin James.  We had a yummy breakfast of quiche, ham with rum raisin sauce, egg nog french toast and fruit.  It was so good!

The boys were fun and cute - they play together well and James is wanting to get in on the action too!

LWK got some pots and pans to go with his kitchen.  The first thing he did was bang them together like cymbals!  He also got lots of books, cars, puzzles and a little Clifford the Big Red Dog.  It is so much fun to have the boys and family together!
Future cymbal player!

LWK is a puzzle master!

Uncle Chris and sweet baby James.

Aunt Julie reading all about cars to LWK.

Aunt Julie with that dapper James!
Joel playing with his Uno game!

Clifford the little red dog!
Guess whose kiddo is playing peek-a-boo with his Santa hat????

The whole family!

Saturday, December 29, 2012

The Visitors

We got in to Seattle from Edmonton this morning at about 7:45am ( we had been up since 3am!).  It is nice to be home, but even nicer that our friends David and John came to visit us while they were in town from The Big Apple.  We had a yummy dinner at Pomegranate and then they came over to chat and have play with LWK.  LWK was his usual charming self, showing off his new talking skills and showing David a thing or two about planes and kitchens!

Eating food from LWK's kitchen - thanks for being a good sport, D!

Playing airplane - D's favorite game!

Superman to the rescue with J.

The boys!

Friday, December 28, 2012

Snow, Canadian Style

Since we are in Edmonton, LWK is getting to have experience with real snow.  Not that wimpy stuff we get in Seattle that shuts down the city.  Actually, the amount of show we have here now (over a foot  in the yard and ice on the roads) would ensure that no one was going anywhere if we were in Seattle.

Checking out the snow falling with Grampie.
It has been so cold (-30 C) that we were keeping LWK in, but the day before we left, it was warming up to -6 and so we bundled him up like Randy in "A Christmas Story" and turned him loose outside.

LWK had 4 layers of clothes on - we didn't want him to get cold!

Checking out how deep the show was - thank goodness he didn't lose a mitten.

Love those sweet, rosy cheeks!

Funny Things My 18 Month Old Says: The Sneeze

This morning I had a big sneeze (silly sinus cold that won't go away) and from the other room, clear as a bell, I heard "bless you" from LWK!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

The Rocking Horse

Grammie and Grampie got LWK a rocking horse that moves its head and tail and whinnies.  LWK wasn't sure what to think, but Grammie was there to help him along.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The Kraft Dinner

I am a little embarrassed to admit how often LWK eats Mac and Cheese.  I DO mix peas in it to give it a somewhat healthier factor, but I know when he is having a picky day or when I know that J and I will be having dinner later or I am just too tired from teaching 195 thirteen year olds, Mac and Cheese it is!

So we are in the Great White North and LWK is having a fab time getting in and out of Grammie's cupboards and what does he find?  Mac and Cheese.  Actually, since we are in Canada it isn't Mac and Cheese, it is Kraft Dinner!  Oh yes, the much loved quick and easy dinner made famous by The Bare Naked Ladies song "If I Had a Million Dollars."  LWK thought that they made great maracas and were running around the house with them, hence the blurry photo!  Silly little half-Canadian!

Tuesday, December 25, 2012


We had a pretty relaxed Christmas in The Great, White North.  We stayed in our jammies, ate lots of yummy food and opened lots of gifts!  Uncle Josh came over and played cars with LWK, I am not sure who had a better time!

The middle of the kitchen floor, while Grammie is cooking, is always the best place to play with cars.

Did you know that a wrapping paper tube is a great tunnel?

Checking out which cars fit through the tunnel the best!

Merry Christmas

We are enjoying the Great White North this year and feeling very blessed for such a happy and healthy family!  It amazes me how much LWK has grown over the past year.  I know I have said it before, but it seems that he has grown from a baby to a toddler in a flash!

Monday, December 24, 2012

Up, Up and Away!

We headed to Canada this morning.  LWK was a cutie in his Canada hoodie (with his Charlie Brown Christmas shirt underneath).  He was all smiles and even slept for the first 45 minutes of the flight.  It was also fun to see the Mork family at the airport!

When we got to Edmonton it was COLD and I had him super bundled up while we waited for J to get the rental car!

I don't think he knows what to think about the multiple layers of clothes and blankets, but I love that he looks like a little eskimo! 

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Oh the Things LWK Can Do!

We have had some exciting new discoveries and skills this week!

1.  LWK can now OPEN doors - yikes!
2.  LWK can blow his nose - Woohoo!
3.  LWK is a mouth kisser - Uhoh!

Stop the Cavalry!

One of my happiest memories of Christmas when I was a little girl was when the song "Stop the Cavalry" came on the radio.  As soon as the tune opened, my parents would crank up the radio (something they NEVER did) and my sister and I would come running out to dance to the lively tune.  I don't hear it much on the radio anymore, but thanks to the amazing power of digital music downloads, I have it on my computer.  This morning we played it on my computer and he had a great time dancing (what's up with the straight leg dance?) and clicking in time!  We will have to work on his dance moves!


Saturday, December 22, 2012

Christmas Morning #1

Since we are going to be out of town for actual Christmas Day, we decided to have Christmas morning a bit early this year with our little family of three.  J and I stayed up late last night wrapping presents, assembling toys and preparing for breakfast - no wonder our parents looked so tired every Christmas morning!

We got to sleep in a bit this morning and we came downstairs as a family.  LWK headed straight to the rocking moose and LOVED it!
The rocking moose fits him perfectly!

His antlers are perfect to hold on to!

Next, he opened his stocking.  We could have stopped right here because he had some HotWheels and he just wanted to race them.  The red mustang was the fastest - Zoom!


Then he decided to check out his little kitchen.  I am glad that I decided to go with the more obscure kitchen(also known as the one I had to order from store I had never heard of in the south since I couldn't find it for a good price on Amazon) because it is super small (perfect for our house) and it had knobs that he LOVES to turn.  Not only do they turn, but they click like Mom's stove - bonus!

It's LWK size!
The knobs click, just like on Mom's stove!

He wanted to help dad open a gift and reminded J that bows are actually hats.

As soon as he put it on his head, he said "Hat!"
After breakfast and a nap, LWK and I cuddled a bit - a perfect end to Christmas morning!

I think we will do this on the years we travel.  It was just nice to have a morning together as a family and create our own traditions!

Friday, December 21, 2012

The Christmas Party

We headed to J's work Christmas party.  It was nice for the whole family to be able to go this year!  LWK was looking quite dapper and was VERY busy running around.  Thank goodness there were lots of other kids to run around with.  Santa was a no-go so we didn't force the issue!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012


LWK is such a parrot lately!  We got up early on Tuesday morning because the words that strike fear in the hearts of all Seattle-ites was mentioned on the news - SNOW!  Since we pretty much shut down the entire city when more than one flake falls, we all get a little freaked out about the S word.  I especially get freaked out when it happens to coincide with the day of a concert!

We had a few inches of snow here in the Cascade foothills.  Our town is good about plowing and getting ready for ice, but I still get paranoid when my school is in session, but the town I live in is running 2 hours late.  I was pleasantly surprised that the snow was nice and crunchy in our alley and the roads were clear.

LWK thought it was fun to walk in the snow since he was leaving footprints.  He kept saying "Snow!" as he walked through it and all the way to daycare.  Once we got out of the car at daycare, it was light enough to take a photo of him with snow in the background, a silly moose hat and me looking ridiculous parroting "snow" back to him!

Friday, December 14, 2012

The Pose

I had the TV on last night while I was trying to get a few things done without LWK being underfoot and he was all comfy in his new "pose."  He has even started to sleep this way with his hands behind his head and his legs all stretched out.  He looks like such a big boy!

Thursday, December 13, 2012

I Did It!

"I did it!" is LWK's favorite new phrase.  As part of the Christmas decor I have yet to put up, I found this singing and dancing penguin and snowman animatronic that I have had for years.  In fact, I think I think I got it at Hallmark the year that J and I met and I took it to his house so he would have some sort of Christmas decor.  Once I put it on the coffee table and showed LWK how to push the button to make it sing, I created a monster!  Every time he punched that button, he exclaimed "I did it!"  Christmas is turning out to be fun this year to watch through his eyes!  Maybe I will have to change my opinion about the holiday after all.


Wednesday, December 12, 2012


Today at school we had an announcement at 12:12 on 12-12-12 and the teacher who spoke told the kids to look at the clock and remember this moment, remember this day because it won't happen again for 100 years.  Granted, a little hokey, but it made me think about how much my life has changed in the last few years.  Even since having LWK, my life, my priorities and what makes me happy now in comparison to 1, 5, 10 or even 20 years ago have changed for the better.

A snapshot of where LWK is at 20 months and 12 days old:

He is starting to sing the ABC songs - he likes the letters G and Y the most right now
He is starting to sleep on his back - with his hands behind his head
He will sit and happily look at books while I am cooking dinner when we get home
He is starting to use his sign language.  Unfortunately, he can also say the words for what he is saying, so it is pretty redundant.
He is starting to cover up with blankets to get cozy
He has figured out how to open gifts - I think the opening a book each night for Advent is helping!

No photos today, but my heart is so full with what a sweet, precious and precocious little boy we have been charged with.  We are so blessed.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Santa - The Second Year

Today was LWK's second visit to Santa.  Last year, he wasn't so sure and was just more curious than anything else.  This year, we had been talking to him about Santa being a nice guy, having a soft beard and saying "ho ho ho."  I think it helped him to know what to expect a little bit.  Santa got LWK to smile, but LWK wasn't sure when we sat him in Santa's lap.  Poor kiddo held it together while I took a couple of photos.  He looks so stoic!

Santa liked the reindeer on LWK's sweater!
 And then I tried to fix LWK's pants and he lost it.
LWK lost it when Mom tried to fix his pants.
 On the way out, we stopped and visited Santa's reindeer.  This one was quite interested in LWK!
We aren't sure if this was Dasher, Dancer, Comet......  But we are sure it wasn't Rudolph!
 Thank goodness for Hanna Andersson's adorable kid clothes - these mittens were on clearance and so cute!
Showing off his cute Rudolph mittens!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

The Curtains

LWK loves playing hide and seek with J and his favorite place to hide is the curtains.  I've been trying to teach him to say "Ta-Da" when he makes his entrance, but to no avail.
Heeeeeeerrrreeee'sssss LWK!
All Smiles!
And this is LWK's elephant.  He has named him "Ga-Go."  We have no idea what "Ga-Go" means or where he picked that name up from, but he is ADAMANT that we call him that.  This is the first time LWK has named something.  He does call his baby doll "Baby," but that was a given!

LWK and Ga-Go

Saturday, December 1, 2012

20 Months Old

LWK is 20 months old!  He is a true toddler now and even occasionally throws a tantrum!

Staying still on the rug!  For a moment at least!
Height: 34+ inches - his legs sprouted this month

Weight:  26+ lbs

Teeth:  13???  His molars are all poking through and his eye teeth are coming in.  Aside from the twice daily torture of brushing his teeth, he doesn't let us peek.

Sleep:  11 - 12 hours at night and a 1 - 2 hour nap each day.
Oh, those blue eyes!

Clothing Size:  2T for shirts and 24months for pants.

Shoes:  Size 6 for now.  We have 7s on reserve for the morning he wakes up and his feet are suddenly a size bigger!

Food:  He has been on a crazy eating schedule this month - he has been having 2 dinners (one when we get home from school and one before his bath!)  He is suddenly feeling heavy!
He loves to choose his books!

Movement:  Walking, running, jumping and climbing!  He likes to climb on the dining room chairs and we had to put away his music table since he is trying to climb on that too!  He can run and dribble a soccer ball.

Words: More than I can count.  We love that he can say happy, owl, apple, water and bath. We don't like that he now knows no and mine.

Toys:  Cars and book like usual.  He also likes his MegaBloks and puzzles.  He becomes very distraught if he doesn't know where his baby doll is and he has named his stuffed elephant, but we aren't sure what he is saying.

Every tower needs a car on top!
Fun moments of the month:  Pretending to snore when he lays on our bed.  Starting to say yes instead of da. Having rocking chair contests with Grandma and Grandpa.  Eating at his little table and chair.  Counting 1 -2 - 3 when he is going to jump or throw.

Not so fun moment of the month:  Hitting....