Thursday, December 27, 2007

A Visit From Friends

One of the most exciting things that happened this weekend was a little visit we received from the Martin family, who also adopted from Kyrgyzstan and who happened to travel with us when we went to pick our babies up! They actually live in South Carolina, but have family living in Indiana and Pennsylvania. They were on their way to Indiana and called us to come meet them off of the Ohio turnpike. It was so wonderful to see them again. They have 5 kids!!! Oh, the energy! I talk to Esther Martin on the phone every few weeks and it was so nice to get to sit and chat face-to-face. Their daughter, Aliya, is growing just as fast as JJ and is gorgeous. Their older children were so excited to see snow, but were definitely not used to the cold!
Here are a few pics from our visit...

JJ saying goodbye to the kids before they hit the road

JJ being a little too aggressive with that sweet Aliya.
You can't see her face, but he did make her cry :(

Another Jockey in the Making...

My great-grandfather, Joseph Marsh Sr., was a jockey. Actually he was a harness racer (are they still called jockeys?) and his son, Joe Marsh Jr. still is. I have many photos, trophies, and news articles written about their spectacular careers and wish I been around to actually see Grandpa win one of his races. Below is one of JJ's favorite gifts he received this Christmas...

According to JJ's adoption papers, his bio mother was 5'1" and his bio father was only 5'4"...looks like he'll be carrying on the family tradition....

The Perfect Gift

We had such an awesome Christmas with JJ. We are so fortunate to have family we are so connected to and who live so close to us. We actually had 4 get-togethers this Christmas! Yes, 4! Five if you count the Christmas party we went to Friday night at our friend Tim's house.

Saturday night we hosted a party here for the Schimmel family (mom's side). There were about 25 people over, so we decided to move the party downstairs and get some use out of the basement that Jerret worked so hard on finishing. Here is a pic of the boys beginning to hand out presents at that party...

Above is JJ playing with his gorgeous cousin, Kayla.

Sunday morning we went to the 9:00 service at church, which is our usual time to go, but because of the holiday falling when it did, they decided to make the Sunday services their special Christmas service. It was SO awesome! The music team there is phenomenal and reminded me of something you would typically hear from Transiberrian Orchestra or Mannheim Steamroller. Just spectacular. At one point they even busted out about 7 metal trash cans and did a little "Stomp" action!!!! AND I am proud to say that we even brought along Jerret's sister and father, who aren't quite sure what to make of our contemporary church, but they did give it a try and for that we are grateful. Unfortunately, we have been having attachment issues with dropping JJ off at the child care during church so Jerret's mom stayed behind and watched him so that we could enjoy the service uninterrupted.

Pastor Lee talked about getting the "perfect gift" this Christmas. He was referring to a gift that would last a lifetime, and suggested that an invitation to church may just be the "perfect gift." I so wish that I could get my brothers interested in seeing what good things are waiting for them if they would open the door to Christ, but I have asked many times and they are not ready....So to anyone in the area, I would like you to consider this open invitation to come to our awesome church. We will even go to a later service if you would like...just say the word and we will be so thrilled to have you with us.

What a Lucky Girl....

I have wanted one of these since I first discovered their glory during Home Economics, freshman year of high school.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Tag - I'm It!

Fellow blogger-momma Andrea at Holding on for the Ride tagged me, which means I am supposed to list 8 interesting/unknown to others/special things about myself. Apparently when I get to 100 posts on my blog, I will need to list 100 other facts about myself so I guess this is good practice...
  1. The first job I was offered after college was as a newspaper reporter. Writing is one of the few things I do well enough at to actually make money at - but then I found out how much newspaper reporters are paid. I couldn't afford to take the job and pay back my student loan!
  2. I was once (actually twice) on the Ricki Lake show. This factoid actually doubles as my "most embarrassing moment." Hey - I was 18, what can I say?
  3. I have always wanted to be famous.
  4. I need to learn to think more before I speak. Sometimes, I can say the nicest thing in the world with no ill-intent at all, and my words are taken completely the wrong way. Maybe that's why I like to write - I have more time to read and re-read my thoughts before they are viewed by others.
  5. My husband and I actually first met in Jr. High (even though we didn't attend the same schools) and I was in LOVE with that boy.
  6. If I could have any job in the world it would be to sit at home and write for a parenting blog or to write books. I actually feel pretty lucky that I get paid to write now, even though it is something as dry as a federal proposal.
  7. I worked two jobs and completed my internship my senior year of college, and still managed to find time for fun!
  8. As a freshman in high school, I tried to break my arm on purpose in order to avoid going out with a boy. (How crazy is that??)
Ok, that's it. And I have thought of a few more that I can use on my list of 100, but we have a while for that one. I am only up to post 60 or something.

I tag: Esther, Amanda, and Mala.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Kyrgyz Memories

I was wrapping presents last night when I remembered a box of treasures we had hidden away in JJ's closet. They are gifts we brought back from Kyrgyzstan to give to our families and friends. I don't want to spoil the surprise, so I am not going to say what they are until after Christmas, but I am so glad we thought ahead to buy these gifts for JJ to give everyone. It will be so fun.

While I was going through the box of Kyrgyz goodies, I found this...

This was actually his "baby" hat from when we picked him up, but we just had to see if it still fit. Using minor force, it did. Jerret was determined to get that thing on. We also purchased some larger hats for JJ to wear in the future. I wish I had a cute coat to match. I would totally dress him in this gear and take him to the grocery store, mall, Target, etc. with me. He's too cute not to share with the world. (I'm not biased at all).


...the Buckeyes rule! That's why.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

I'm Good!

Thank you to all who prayed for me during surgery on Tuesday. Things went well - probably as best as we could have hoped for. I am still very sore, but happy that the surgery is over and I am home, in one piece, able to play with my JJ. Now we are just waiting for good news from the biopsy and we can all breathe easier.

Saturday, December 08, 2007


I consider myself a fairly private person. Not private in the sense that I am shy - because I am not- and anyone who knows me knows how much I love to talk (especially about JJ), but private in the sense that I don't like to share my "problems." I try my best to be tough. I hate to admit defeat, and sometimes that means putting on a pretty face even when things are bad.

My doctor has told me on a few occasions that I have a "high pain tolerance," but I consider myself more high maintenance than anything and her assessment came only after my refusal to admit I was having any pain during my ectopic pregnancies. I thought that if I could fight through the pain that somehow I could stay pregnant and everything would be OK in the end...we all know it doesn't happen that way. I think twice about even posting about my infertility issues or failed pregnancies because it is further proof that I am being defeated. Being a Christian in has helped me to acknowledge this fault of mine. I know that God is the only perfect one and everyone else is just like me...faults, disappointment, and all.

I bring these things up because I have once again found myself in a predicament, and once again it is medical in nature. And I need help. So I am going to ask....I will be having surgery on Tuesday at noon and need all of your prayers for the very best possible outcome. I am very nervous and hate the thought of going "under the knife" (although I know Michelle will tell me there is nothing to worry about ;) . I just feel so vulnerable being on that table - totally out of it. The only other times I have had surgery were in emergency situations and I had no choice but to have the surgery right at that time. Since I have opened myself up, I will share with you some minor details (it's all I can allow myself - sorry)... The doctors have found something growing inside of me...we really don't know what until it can be biopsied. It is dangerously close to my reproductive organs and who knows, could be the root of why I haven't been able to get pregnant. It is pretty large. We need to pray that it is benign and that it can be removed without damage to any of my organs. So if you think of it, please add me to your list.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

'Tis The Season...for Shopping!

Holiday shopping didn't go as well as planned this year. Jerret recently mentioned that he wanted a Zune for Christmas. It's like an I-Pod, but only with a bigger screen and you can transfer music person-to-person much easier. Anyway - our local Meijer store was selling the 30-gb version for only $89 - a steal compared to the regular price of $199!

My family and I woke at 3:00 in order to arrive at 4:00 so that we might, just might have a chance at being in the right place when the store employees brought the sale merchandise out for the 6 a.m. rush when the prices were actually valid. I waited...and waited...and watched the crowd grow...and waited. I asked people around the store what "hot" items they were there to purchase. I only found one other person who said he was there for the Zune. 'Sweet!' I thought...I've got this one in the bag...I am totally getting one of these Zunes!

I paced around the back of the store, eagerly looking for my treasure. Store employees had already brought out most of the special-priced items and were standing guard until 6:00 a.m. to make it fair for everyone (?). This meant no one was allowed to even touch the products until the clock struck 6. As I was pacing around the Dora tents and circling the talking kitchen set, I heard a voice over the loudspeaker announce "If you are here to buy the Zune, please line up at the pharmacy." I was so far from the pharmacy. I knew I had to hurry. I pushed my cart and began running through the store. And I mean RUNNING. I almost crashed into two innocent bystanders - yelling out my apologies after I was far enough away that I couldn't hear them scoffing at my ridiculousness or the fact that I almost killed them. As I turned the corner to the main aisle, one of the boxes on the bottom of my cart went flying off and landed near the checkout lanes. I ran back, picked up my box, threw it back in the cart, and finished my trek to the pharmacy counter. By the time I arrived I was too late. I was about 10 people from the desk and heard another announcement over the loudspeaker: "If you are in line for the Zune, we are now sold out."

I couldn't believe what I was hearing. This was not happening. I waited two hours to find out where this thing was going to be sold and I needed it for my husband. Unfortunately, I never got my prize. It seems that Meijer only received 8 Zunes in the entire store. I am convinced that someone in the front of the line bought all 8 but I'll never know. All I know is that I didn't get my husband the gift he really wanted for Christmas :(

In good news...JJ is great. He went shopping with mommy for a good portion of the day. He also said "water" today. I so wish we could adopt another. I am praying for a girl!!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Thanksgiving Eve

It's the night before Thanksgiving and I am passing the time before my cousin, sister, and step-mom arrive at 4 a.m. for our annual shopping extravaganza. Here's a pic of JJ last weekend. He is doing great. (Don't freak out about the pic...I am right below him, holding his legs). We are hearing new words all the time, the most recent being: Bea, duck, bottle, and light. We wish he'd say more, but he's very stubborn and does everything in his own time. I even noticed that he won't dance to the Wiggles anymore if he sees Mommy and Daddy doing it too. He wants to be the center of attention and will just stop and stare at us with his hands behind his back as if he were saying "whenever you want to stop...." He does find it rather amusing to see Jerret and I kiss and gets a huge smile on his face and then asks for kisses of his own. He is also playing mommy like a fiddle when it comes to getting attention. Some (Jerret) may say I am a "panicker." I tend to freak out a little when it comes to JJ, especially if he falls or I hear a 'thud' from his head hitting the wall/floor/dresser. So now, whenever JJ gets a little ouchie he immediately gets this pitiful, sad look on his face and runs to mommy to bury his head in my chest.
Oh - and he managed to get out of his crib the other night. We have one of the convertible beds that will turn into a toddler bed and then a full, so the railing doesn't come down at all. The little guy climbed over the side and landed hard! We were watching TV in the next room when we heard the loud thud, and I was terrified. He cried for a while and Jerret ended up turning the crib around so the lower side faces the wall and there is no way for JJ to escape the taller ends of the bed. It's so tall that I have a hard time putting him down at bedtime. My arms don't reach that far!

We just returned home from visiting Jerret's family outside of Cleveland. We were actually there for his Uncle Don's funeral. This may sound a little strange, but it was actually the best funeral I have ever been to. Ok, I wasn't actually at the funeral, funeral. I was inside of the funeral home and in a little sitting room with JJ (he was acting a little crazy) while the funeral was going on and there were speakers in the room so I could listen to the Pastor and others speak. During the service there were many different guest speakers (friends and family members) who told awesome stories about Uncle Don's life and accomplishments. The details were incredible - so descriptive that I felt as though as though I was reading his biography. I learned so much about this man that I too had come to love. He was a retired police officer and a marine. He was buried at a military cemetery where a military ceremony was conducted - complete with a 21-gun salute. It was awesome.

Traveling with JJ wasn't too bad. He slept in the car quite a bit, but did not want to settle down at all while at the funeral home. He's just a baby and wanted to run and play and scream at the top of his lungs - typical kid stuff. Maybe we shouldn't have taken him, I don't know, but we didn't really have an option as we don't have anyone in the family who can/will keep him overnight. Everyone in my family works and there really aren't many people to ask. Oh well - we made it!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

A Year...

It's been a year now since mom passed. Strangely, I don't think I have dealt with it yet. I know it will come someday, and I am sure it won't be pretty, but for now we just go.

It all happened so fast...her diagnosis, the prognosis, and then the end. I wanted to ask her if there was something she had always wanted to do, but never got around to doing. I was going to take her. I would have done it with her. I never asked.
Her birthday is approaching in 3 weeks. She would have been 53. Young.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

I'm Behind!

I feel as though I haven't posted in ages, so I will do my best to catch everyone up. We had a great Halloween. JJ wasn't too cool about riding in the wagon with my friend's son, and he fussed until I took him out. I definitely wasn't going to carry him the entire time, so I got out the stroller and pushed him in that. It was a chore getting him in and out at each house, so I was selective and only took him up to the houses where we knew people. We actually had a great time while trick-or-treating. Some friends of ours came over with their three kids (they don't live in a "neighborhood") and my friend and I took them all around while the guys stayed behind and scared little kids. Oh yeah - I think they passed out a few pieces of candy in the process. Here is a picture of one of the neighbor kids, who also dressed as a monkey. I thought he looked a lot like JJ in the face.
Eight o'clock came pretty quick and our neighbors came over and hung out for a while with Jerret. Inside the house was utter chaos as there were 10 kids running loose! Trust me, 10 kids in a 1600-sf house is not too cool! Thank heavens for the basement!!
Our neighbor brought JJ over a tricycle that was once his son Hayden's. Hayden is 2 1/2 now and I guess he is too big for this bike. JJ LOVES it! He can't yet figure out the pedals, but he loves to pretend.

The next picture is cute because it is what has now become our morning routine. JJ recently started waking up about 1/2 an hour earlier than he used to; so now he must wait for me to finish getting ready before we have our time together. He loves to chill out in Daddy's spot on our bed and watch JoJo's Circus while having his morning bottle. He can drink out of a sippie just fine and even drinks from a regular cup, but he still enjoy's a bottle in the morning and one at bedtime. Aunt Cyndi and Aunt Bea want me to throw the bottles out, but nah - they're not hurting anything, right?

Finally, we have a picture of JJ getting his hair cut. This is actually his second haircut, as I was not able to get any pictures the first time. (I took him myself - Jerret told me to, I swear - and it was just too hard to do all that. Plus, the lady at the shop was not very helpful). The second haircut went much better than the first. Jerret did have to hold him the entire time, but JJ did great. He fussed a little bit at first, but then the girl pulled out a dum-dum sucker, and it was all over. JJ was in heaven and didn't even care what she was doing to his hair.

Besides that, we're gearing up for the holiday's and for Jerret to go back to China. It's going to be a long 6 weeks without him!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Our Little Monkey

We bought JJ the cutest monkey costume for Halloween. Jerret's parents were over and we couldn't resist putting it on him. It just barely fits, but we had a blast watching him run around the house for half an hour dressed like a monkey. I felt really guilty after we took it off because the silk lining made him sweat terribly! Who knew they made such high-quality costumes these days? I still remember the year my brother was Boss Hog and I was a police girl. We had those cheap plastic costumes that barely fit right over your clothes. And they had the even cheaper plastic masks that fit over your head, but didn't actually fit quite right. You couldn't really see out of the eye holes because they were so small and didn't line up with your eyes the way they should have. And you couldn't really breathe out of the nose holes because they were way too small so mom would have use scissors to make them bigger.

Tonight is my step-dad's 60th birthday so we will be going over there to celebrate with him. I remember when he turned 40 he told me that he didn't feel any different than he did when he was 18 years old. I wonder if he still feels that way.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Our Day At The Point

Jerret and I took our three nephews to Cedar Point on Sunday. They boys were so excited to go and talked the entire way there about which rides they would and wouldn't go on, and what they wanted to ride first. It was unseasonably hot for October - 90+ degrees outside. Today it was down to 60!

The day didn't start out so great as AJ was literally 1 inch too short to ride most of the rides. 48 inches is the standard for the majority of the roller coasters, and Raymond and Tyler were easily tall enough to ride whatever they wanted. For our first ride, we went to the "Blue Streak," one of the smaller, older coasters. AJ was all set to get in line when the gate keeper came up with her red and white stripped stick and made him stand next to it to check his height. When the lady announced that he was too short to ride, I told Jerret to go ahead with the boys and I would stay behind with AJ. Right away AJ started to cry and began saying things like he was never going to go to Cedar Point again because they wouldn't let him on the rides. I tried to calmly explain to him that he was a growing boy and that when he came back next year, he will have grown 4 inches and will easily get on whatever ride he wanted. He looked a little puzzled and then announced, as if a light bulb had just went off in his head, that he needed some good food to eat while we were there and maybe by the end of the day he will have grown enough to ride the roller coasters.

We had a great time and were all exhausted by the end of the day. I went to bed early and didn't want to get up for work Monday morning. I can't even imagine how those boys must have felt going to school! Yeah - it was Columbus Day and they had to go to school. I asked them why they didn't get the day off and Raymond answered "We don't celebrate Christopher Columbus; he never found America." I thought that was funny...
Raymond riding the "cups" as he calls them.

Tyler and AJ also riding the cups. This was AJ's first ride.

The boys waiting in line for a ride.

Can you tell it was game day? Jerret insists that JJ wear Ohio State gear on Saturdays.

He's getting pretty good with that spoon!

Monday, September 24, 2007

We Got A New Camera!

We recently bought a new digital camera and have been having a blast taking tons of JJ pics. He is growing bigger every day and surprising us with what he is learning. His new word is Jay-Jay, which he says in a long, drawn out way. It is too funny. His hair is super curly, but a little too long and he kinda has the old man come-over look going - actually it's not so much as a come over as it is a comb front. Regardless, we are ready to take him for his first cut. This should be fun - Ugh! JJ at dad's work party. There were John Deere's everywhere!

We tried and tried to get JJ to put on this big, furry winter hat that Jerret picked up in China. It actually looks more like something you would find in Russia. JJ didn't care for it too much.

We actually got the hat on him at this point, although you can't really see it with our dark couch in the background.

JJ loves to drink bath water from the cup I use to rinse the soap off of him. It is so interesting because they let him drink from a tin cup in the orphanage so he naturally wants to try and drink from every cup he sees. He also likes to drink from water bottles, although he sometimes gets a little too excited and spills it all down the front of his shirt.

here is a pic of my nephew AJ with JJ and my dad. JJ loves his cousins!

Monday, September 17, 2007

Our Quiet Weekend

We had a nice, relaxing weekend at home although the weather wasn't so nice! Saturday turned bitterly cold and I am sad to report that we have now turned on the heat in the Hartman house.

JJ has recently figured out how to manipulate door handles. The interior doors in our house all have lever handles, which he can just reach and pull down to open. (He can't get outside though because those doors have the round knobs - plus we keep those doors locked at all times). I thought it was so cute how he would try and open all the doors inside the house, until he hit the closet. Once he finally got the closet door open he found all the *cool* stuff we keep in there and decided to drag it all out, piece by piece. I was laughing hysterically at the mess he was making and his "oooohs and aaaaahhhhs" with each find when I saw this...He found my Wal-Mart shoe rack inside the closet and thought it looked fun to play with. I am so surprised it didn't break by this point, and in fact was still laughing with him, having a good old time when the next thing I knew this happened...

Apparently, he didn't like my laughing at him. (Is it totally wrong of me to have snapped a pic before I helped him??)

JJ is doing great and is surprising us daily with new things he has learned. His new love is the Wiggles, and he has made a nightly routine of bringing us the remote control so that we can play the day's episode from TIVO. He knows many of the songs, and although he can't sing them, he definitely knows how to dance to them! He has also recently learned how to play hide and seek, and will put a blankie in front of his face, pull it down and say "Boo!" His vocabulary is still limited to book, ball, balloon, bye, kitty-cat, da-da and mama; but I say - he's still learning English! Aunt B swears he said "shoe" today, but we have yet to hear it. Oh how I wish we had the $$ for another!

We had a nice weekend. I went to an awesome baby shower. For those of you who are long-time blog readers, you know that I cannot stand the huge mega-showers. This one was quite the opposite. Very intimate, yet very informal. We ate right away, a simple menu of stuffed bread sticks and salad, and played one shower game. It was a super creative game called "Guess the pregnant celebrity" where the hostess found 10 pics of celbs when they were preggers. She blacked out the faces and we each had to guess who the person was. The one with the most right answers won (it wasn't me). After our game we made brownie sundaes (YUM!) and ate them while we watched Sarah (the guest of honor) open her gifts. It was seriously the best shower ever!

Monday, September 10, 2007

Toothpaste Really Does Work!

Mom and Dad were busy cleaning the house and decided to pull JJ in the kitchen while we let him tried to feed himself. Thank heavens he was on the tile and not in the dining room where we usually eat, because as you can see, he took this opportunity to dump his food all over the place. I love how he looks at us like he totally knows he is busted.

He is such a happy boy. The white stuff on his head is toothpaste. See - Jerret's work party was Saturday and we were outside for a good 6 hours. The mosquitoes around here have been terrible due to all the rain we've been having and JJ got about 12 bites that night. I was looking for something to stop him from itching when Jerret announced that toothpaste works the best. He said his mom always put it on he and his siblings when they were young. Me, being the skeptic that I am, didn't believe him and had to Google "toothpaste on mosquito bites" before I would give it a try. Low and behold, I found all kinds of ways to stop the itching and toothpaste happens to be one of them (tee tree oil and hemorrhoid cream are among some of the others).
In other news - I had a big win at work this week. There are really only two reasons a proposal writer should ever get excited about work; one is wins and the other is an extension. I happened to get both last week. The win was for the largest job my company has ever been awarded - a $53 million project at Dover AFB. Yeah me!

Wednesday, August 29, 2007


It's been a couple of weeks since my last post, so here are some new pics of JJ. The first one is of our favorite little onsie given to us by Aunt MaryAnne and Uncle Don. (See below for frontal view).

Here is what the shirt says (and a nice wet mark from his sippie)

I swear I don't think he was scared in this picture.....
Now to business....Is summer over ALREADY? I am trying hard to remember that it is still August and fall doesn't even officially start until Sept. 23 this year, but the rest of the world is trying to convince me that summer is over. I heard my first sign the other day when our neighbor told me they were closing their pool up for the year....What what what?! Did I hear her right??? It's not even Labor Day and we always have 90 degree days in September. But, it is THEIR pool and their prerogative to open and close it as they please so who am I to try and convince them that a dip in the shallow end is going to be just what the doctor ordered when the temps reach 97 this weekend, as forecasted.
Tonight on my walk with JJ I noticed two more signs that the end of summer is near. The locusts were signing in the trees their buzz, buzz, buzz song that is so familiar in this area. The sound is so familiar to me that I tend to ignore it. But tonight I listened and was taken back to being 10 and staying the weekend at dad's house. I'm not sure why, but every time I hear the locusts I think about his house.
The third sign was the fact that it was 7:45 and the sun was setting! One of my most favorite things about summer is the longer days and sitting outside until 9:00, not having a clue what time it is because it could be 5:00 for all you know. The sun is shining and that's all that matters.
And there are more....the school buses that insist on pulling out in front of me each morning, making me afraid to pass and therefore late for work; high school football games on Friday nights; having to put a sweatshirt on when sitting out on the patio at night; wearing long pants to work and not worrying that I am going to be to hot. It happens, I know. But I really am looking forward to the day when we move to a place where snow doesn't happen and year-round swimming does!
In other news...I took JJ to a dermatologist to get to the bottom of these mysterious skin spots that he has had since we brought him home. For those of you who don't know what I am talking about, all I can call them are "spots." He has 4 on different parts of his body, and they're not really a rash and I don't think they itch JJ. They just pop out and last about 7-10 days and then subside, living behind only a trace of pigmentation that looks like a tiny brown birthmark. In another 10-12 days they reappear and are bright pink/red and inflamed and again last for 7-10 days and so on. It's a vicious cycle and the docs here can't figure them out. We have been treating them with a steroid cream for a week at a time, but I don't know if that is working because the nature of the "spots" is to come and go at will.
The dermatologist wants to do a biopsy, which I am not all that crazy about. But I do want to get to the bottom of this. His second recommendation was to take Jack to the Ohio State University Medical Center where he worked for 12 years. There they have 2 pediatric derm docs that research stuff like this. Because this is the less invasive option, I am tempted to do this. Besides, Jerret would give his right arm to travel to Columbus during football season.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

He Can Walk Ya'll!

Our crawling days are behind us and we are exhausted from chasing this boy around the yard, house, neighborhood, neighbor's yard, etc. Walking didn't just "happen" for us like many of my friends and fellow mommies have said. We worked at it for about 3 weeks and slowly but surely made progress until we no longer had to hold hands when JJ wanted to walk. His first steps looked something like Frankenstein in search of his mother. He held his hands way out in front of him for balance.

Jerret's cousins in Cleveland bought us this little number and sent it to us. I have never seen such a thing in my life, but it is a baby [toddler] urinal called Peter Potty. We aren't quite ready for it yet, but we couldn't resist getting some pics with it.

Besides that, we (or at least I) experienced a trying weekend with the little guy. JJ must not have felt well and was out of sorts for 3 days straight. On Saturday my friend (who's little boy is only 2 days older than JJ), her husband, and baby, Boston, came over to go swimming. As soon as we got in the pool JJ bit Boston on the arm - BAD. When I tried to correct him and ask him to give Boston love he smacked me!!! I even have the scratch across my forehead to prove it. The next day I was at the mall, waiting in line and JJ didn't want to sit in his stroller. At this time I didn't have him strapped in because I had just been holding him and only put him down so I could get into my purse. He scooted all the way down the seat and snuck out of the stroller!! Luckily I was watching him as he made his move, but it just amazes me that he is able to concoct such a plan!

Things seem to be back to normal and he really is such a good boy. He is smart as a whip too. Yesterday we were in the car listening to his Little Einsteins CD and there is a part that tells you to pat your hands on your lap and then raise your hands really high above your head. JJ did both without missing a beat. We do this together at home, but I was blow away to see that he could do this on his own without my holding his arms or hands and helping him. And the fact that he did it all on his own, just by listing and comprehending what the boy on the CD was saying! I think we have a Little Einstein of our own on our hands!! Seriously - I was so impressed that I called my mother in law and told her about my little genius!

That's all for now.......

Saturday, August 11, 2007

My Husband Rules!!!!

Jerret is the best husband ever!! He had a HUGE surprise party for my 30th birthday on the 4th. It was a huge luau with leis all around and food and drinks for all. He even had a raffle with give-aways for all the guests. And It WAS a surprise because I totally thought I was going to the Josh Turner concert with my cousins. (I know, it was a disappointment to miss out on Josh, but it was an even better party!)

I walked into his parents backyard to find my entire family and a slew of friends. This was totally the best birthday party I have ever had. He even arranged for my Aunt Cyndi to come and pick JJ up at 9:00 so that we had the rest of our night free. By the end of the night everyone who was left ended up in the pool. It was a blast. Here are a few pics (and yes, I did enjoy a few adult beverages -hence the Miller Light in my hand)...

Sunday, July 29, 2007

New JJ Pics

Ok, so we're a tad camera happy in this family. Below are some recent pics of JJ enjoying his summer. He loves being outside - and loves the pool even more!