Brotherly Love

Sunday morning Charlie woke up at his normal time (around 6:00am), but he seemed extra sleepy as I was nursing him.  I decided to give it a whirl and put him back in bed when he was finished, and much to my delight he went back to sleep.  Of course, I got back into our bedroom and Mr Jack had sneaked in there and stolen my spot.  He had fallen back asleep, so I just went out the couch to catch a few more zzz's.

I awoke about an hour later to Jack saying "I'm coming Charlie" as he was dragging a chair from the kitchen into Charlie's room.  I knew what he was planning so I grabbed my camera and busted him in the act:

At least Charlie was already awake this time (he's been known to rush in there as soon as Charlie makes a little peep, which usually does not mean he's ready to get up yet).  And Mommy was just happy to have gotten the extra hour of sleep, so I can't complain!

Lantern Festival

Friday night Grandma Lang and I took Jack and Charlie to the Lantern Festival at the Missouri Botanical Gardens.  This was one of the activities we had planned during Kelly and Parker's visit, but it was too hot.  Since there was finally a chill in the air Friday (I think the high was only 87 degrees) we decided to give it a go.  Boy are we glad we did - we LOVED it!

It's basically a display of Chinese art, mostly made of silk and all lit up.  It was really cool.  Jack especially liked seeing all the dragons and he learned a new word, Buddha, since one of the big displays was of some Buddha guys.

Jack and Charlie really couldn't have been better behaved.  I changed Charlie into his jammies assuming he would doze in the stroller, but it was pretty crowded (because the weather was finally below 100 degrees), so there was too much to see.  Little man was quiet and relaxed, but never closed his eyes the whole time we were there.  When we got in the car at 10:00 (2.5 hours past bed time!!), he was asleep as soon as I got him buckled into his car seat.  What a trooper!!

Jack was a great listener and enjoyed riding on the sit & stand stroller (that thing was a great invention!).  We also ran into his best buddy from school, Grier, so that was fun.

Jack's favorites were the dragons that blew steam out of their mouths.  They were made entirely of porcelain plates and other cooking utensils.

We also really liked the ship made from recycled plastic bottles:

Jack got to play the gong, throw some coins into a fountain to make a wish and he got a special souvenir for being such a great boy.

We had a great time!!  I definitely recommend this to anyone who lives in the St. Louis area.  The event ends on August 19 and is totally worth the admission price of $22/person.


Annual Lake Trip

Last weekend we had our annual lake trip with my parents, their group of friends and all of their kids, with whom I grew up.  Of course there's a third generation too now that we're all having babies.  It was lots of fun!!

We started the long weekend with a play date at our house with Jules and her baby Evelyn, Steve and his baby Ryan and Laura and her twin baby boys that are still cookin'.  We had a nice visit.
Charlie kept escaping during the obligatory photo shoot

 Oops, there he goes again!
 Steve, Ryan, Evelyn, Jules, me, Jack, Charlie, Laura and baby bump (blocked by Charlie)
Then Thursday the boys and I left for the lake with my parents (Jason stayed back to work and came down Friday evening instead).  We had some pool time the first day, which both boys enjoyed.

Friday my mom, Charlie and I squeezed in a quick trip to the outlet mall while Jack and Grandpa fished.

Then we went out with the whole group on the boat.  Both boys did great - we all got in the water for awhile and then just hung out on the boat.  We stayed out well past nap time, but there were no meltdowns.  That's a success in my book!  Charlie wasn't sure about his first life jacket experience but he didn't complain too much.

Evelyn & Charlie

About to doze off - time to head back to the condo!

Dylan Trost - Jack's new buddy!  He is 5 1/2 but they still played great together (something about being the only two big boys, I guess)

And....he's out!
Saturday was just a pool day with another boat ride and some more fishing.  Jack is getting pretty good at casting and he and Daddy were fishing early Sunday morning and he threw a good cast and immediately caught a fish.  His daddy was very proud.

We capped off the day with our annual dice game (left-right-center).  This year was a smaller group but we still had 20 players.  Jack had a hay day being in charge of putting people's money in the pot when they rolled a four.  He was so excited!

Fun with stickers at dinner Friday night
Jack and I shared a bed.  The pictures are blurry because they were taken with my phone in the dark, but I had to demonstrate what a bed hog this guy is.  Two different nights:

We had a nice weekend and it was great to see my oldest friends in the world who were in town from Chicago, San Francisco and Chippenham, England!


Charlie is 10 Months Old!

I'm over a week late with this post, but Little Man has hit the 10 month mark.
Charlie has fully mastered the crawling and likes to switch it up sometimes by crawling by keeping his left knee up and just using his foot instead.  It's funny because when Parker was here, both she and Charlie were doing the same thing with the same leg.  He seems to be doing more of the normal crawl lately and boy is he fast!  He's always standing, cruising around everything.  He can now gently lower himself to the ground and bend to pick things up and go back to the standing position (as opposed to before when the only way he knew to get down from standing was to plop down).  He also loves to let go and stand on his own - he can stand for about 10 seconds before he sits down.

 The most exciting development this month: Charlie can now walk behind his walker!!  He's pretty good at it; that is, until he hits a wall or other obstacle - he has no idea how to steer yet.  These videos were taken the first night he really attempted it and he's gotten better and better since then:
I took Charlie back for an ear re-check last week and his left ear had healed, but now his right ear in infected.  So he is working through round 2 of the same antibiotic.  I will take him back again next week to get him rechecked, but this pattern feels very familiar,  He may have tubes in his future just like his big brother.  Our pediatrician hasn't mentioned it yet, but the last two times we've been there for ears we have seen a nurse practitioner.  I will be sure to see our regular doctor at this next re-check so we can get to the bottom of this.

Charlie can still fit into 12 month clothes, but he's mostly wearing 18 months now.  He officially has four teeth - three on the bottom and the top middle right one, which is still less than halfway in.  There are 1-2 more on top that are following closely behind.
Mr. Man is still taking two naps and is a great sleeper at night.  I put him down after I nurse him and he's usually still awake.  I just hold him for about 20 seconds and rock and then place him in his crib and leave.  Piece of cake.  He generally wakes up around 6:00 after going to bed around 7:30 or 7:45.
 Charlie has a great new expression where he scrunches up his little nose and smiles.  He reminds me of his daddy when he does it:
Charlie loves to wave and usually will do it when we say bye bye to him.  We still cannot get him to consistently do "so big."  Maybe he realizes it's not a critical skill.  He also loves to "talk" and his favorite sound is dadadada.  He loves to point at us with his fist (demonstrated in one of the videos above), which I totally love.  He also enjoys playing catch with us.  Sometimes the ball lands right back in his lap when he "throws" it, but other times he is able to send it flying.  He still uses both hands, but sometimes I really think he favors his left.  Time will tell.

These photo sessions are not easy anymore!
That's our boy at 10 months!  Always on the move, always happy and always making us laugh.  This is a fun, fun age!!