Sunday, October 28, 2012

And the beat goes on...

Well, we're battening down the hatches in preparation for our favorite Category 1 Hurricane Sandy who's coming to visit. The rain started at about 4 p.m. today, and the trees around our house are looking more bare by the hour as the wind has kicked up.  We'll see how it goes as the next 72 hours unfold.

But back to the important things: Our cute little boy. Who really is a true little boy - I know I've blogged about that before, but when I was stepping into the elevator at daycare the other day, I smelled his little blonde, curly head, and Levi has officially lost that soft baby smell. He (thankfully) has not reached full-on boy smell, which I'm afraid to say I suspect smells like sweat, dirt, and other less-savory things. Right now we're in the yogurt, bananas, and hot dog smell phase :)

We had the last swimming lesson of the fall on Saturday, working on kicking, jumping in the pool, blowing bubbles, and being OK on his back in the water. We practice some of his skills in the bathtub (where the water is much, much warmer), blowing bubbles, lying on our tummies and kicking, etc. Sometimes, if the water's low in the tub, we make waves. but not too often:)

Its crazy how much Levi keeps learning things and growing up. I remember thinking a few weeks back that it seems to be going slower than it was the first year of his life -- but he's still packing so much information in and learning every day. I think I read somewhere that kids learn the most in the first five years of their life, and Levi's well on his way there. Since he can understand us pretty well now, we're working on listening to mommy, daddy, and his teachers. Levi does things like wiping his face, and putting his toys away (usually) on command. He uses a spoon instead of his hands most of the time, and even brushes his teeth pretty well. We're going for thoughtful and civilized as wee\ raise him, though we still embrace getting dirty and wrestling :)

His language also seems to be developing - though we still hardly know what he's saying most of the time. He now says "yay!" when he's clapping, usually congratulating himself on completing some basic task. He sounds like he's trying to repeat what we say, so we're trying to teach him basic names of the things he interacts with every day. And also, fun words like "shenanigans." Because why not?

He takes the talking to himself pretty far - most nights, he goes to bed without crazy scream fests, and for awhile after he goes to bed, we can hear him in his room chatting with himself, his blanket, and his pillows. Not sure what they're discussing in the dark, but he seems to find it entertaining, because about half of the chatting involves laughing like crazytown :) maybe he's got imaginary friends???
Most of the photos on this post are from our recent four-day vacation down to Virginia Beach. We'd never been there before, and weren't sure about how a family vacation with an 18-month-old would go, but it actually was very, very nice. We spent the first day at the aquarium, as it was raining in the morning. Saturday, we filled our time with just about everything beachy you could imaging: Swimming in the heated pool, lounging on the beach, playing in the ocean, going for a bike ride up and down the boardwalk, and dinner out on a beautiful porch with fresh seafood. It was actually kind of nice to have to work with Levi's nap schedule and early bedtime - I got to go to the gym, we rested and read books and sat out on our balcony in sight of the ocean, and enjoyed the jetted-tub in our suite. We spent Sunday walking the boardwalk and visiting a super awesome brand-new playground before heading back home. We took the more scenic route, crossing a 13-mile bridge.tunnel, and then driving up Route 1 along the coast of Maryland and Delaware. A lovely little vacation in the midst of a busy fall!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Woah woah woah. woah.

 Levi has begun his verbal word collection with the rather quirky "uh-oh." Granted, he uses this not entirely appropriately, generally after chucking something across the room or taking his shoes off on purpose. He thinks he fools us....but we know better (that's truly entering parenthood, no? When your child spends his life thinking he pulled a fast one, but you're miles ahead of them. My mom literally knew what every single one of her children were going to do before they did it. 24 hours a day.)

So far other semi-recognizable words include "ca-kro" (or, cracker, for the visual learner), "ah-Day" for Daddy, and my personal favorite "Woah woah woah." I taught him that last one. Its what I say when I'm chatting with him/playing/changing his diaper/entertaining him on car rides, and can mean anything from "stop what you are doing and put your hands up!" to "that made me laugh" to "I'm stronger than you, and you know it." Its the intonation of such a tiny person saying things in exactly my tone of voice.

We're also trying to teach him rather grand vocabulary -- starting with "incontinent." Early potty-training here. 

We also have moved both forward and backward on the food front. I think I mentioned before that he's good on peanuts, and eats graham crackers with peanut butter just about every day. But we've narrowed down a slight reaction he had one time to Mott's cinnamon applesauce. And since he eats both apples and water all the time, he might be allergic to either high fructose corn syrup, or cinnamon, the only other ingredients. (mom, that's what the rash on his face was that night you were here). So we're going to experiment...on our one-year-old. Healthy family life, right? And talk to his doctor, don't worry.

Little engineer, hard at work
Levi had a lovely visit with my mom, or Grandma, about a week ago. We played in the park, ate lots of food, and Levi napped :)Then then next day we went to the science museum in Harrisburg, which was pretty small but incredibly interactive. I've decided I would like to be a Foley artist. When I retire. They add sound effects to movies - I practiced adding them to a scene in Julia and Julie. It was so exciting that yes, I had to tell you about it on a blog about my son :) Levi had a grand old time, both in the section specially for under 5s (how awesome is that??!) and in the regular area for kids and adults too - many buttons to push, chairs to sit on, etc.

Simulated hurricane at the science museum.

And we can't close this blog without a friendly trans-Atlantic wave to Grammy, Grandad, and the rest of the Besant contingent. We are with you in spirit, particularly the spirit of Levi's new red galoshes (Thanks Auntie Krista!).