Sunday, August 28, 2011

Happy Four Months!

Happy birthday to my bright, happy four month old!

Four month stats:
Weight - 16lb 8.5oz, 83rd percentile
Height - 25-1/2", 76th percentile
Head circumference - 42.8cm, 68th percentile

That's my little man!

Friday, August 26, 2011

The most beautiful county in the world

Last weekend we made a trek out to visit our friends the C family in Charlottesville, Virginia.  As you may or may not know, Charlottesville is located in Albemarle county, which, according to Thomas Jefferson, is the most beautiful county in the world.

We began with the too-short Denver-Dulles redeye, and relaxed in the Red Carpet Club in Washington.  It was Andrew's first visit to the RCC (a dubious distinction).

Andrew and Daddy read the Wall Street Journal

Mommy and Andrew catch up on sleep they missed on the redeye.

On the prop plane to CHO

We visited Monticello, the home of Thomas Jefferson.  (You totally thought I had that quote about Albemarle County off the top of my head, didn't you?)

Striking a pose with TJ

Ruby enjoyed cuddling with Andrew

Daddy and Andrew catch some shut-eye... in the Wiggle Room at church

After church, we ventured out for some Carolina-style barbecue at Blue Ridge Pig, which was, appropriately, decorated with pigs.
Sammy hangin' with the piggies.

Andrew enjoyed chewing on the pigs even though he can't have pork yet.

After lunch, we drove up on the Blue Ridge Parkway to take in the views and try out a hike on the short-but-steep trail to Humpback Rocks.
Andrew tried the "back" position in the Ergo for the first time.

Almost there.

A storm rolled in.

We sort of got stormed off of the trail.  It was raining pretty steadily by the time we got back to the cars.  Andrew got stormed off his first peak!  So exciting, these milestones.

Back at home, I was challenged to a Matching Game duel.  I believe the words of both Sammy and Noah were, "I can beat you at Matching Game later!"  I played 4-year-old Noah pretty much no-mercy, all-out, and we tied.

Noah thought he was going to beat me.

Then it was Sammy's turn.  Between all of his trash talk, and the way that Noah had nearly bested me, I figured I better play him tough.  And I beat the pants off of him.  Ah well.
Andrew was an excited spectator.

Noah built a colorful castle of blocks.

Group portrait!!
Travis, Andrew, Amy, Ruby, Anna Grace, Noah, Sammy, Mary Kathryn, and Ben.

The next day, Travis and I tried out Ben's backyard climbing wall.  Andrew supervised as safety officer.

I did so well!!...

...and then I fell.

Travis took a flight on the rope swing.

Sammy showed us how it's done on the overhang.  Barefoot.

Travis tries a bouldering traverse.

Then it was time to say goodbye to the kids, who were off to enjoy a last trip to the pool before school started.

We drove over to Shenandoah National Park to take a cruise on Skyline Drive. We stopped at an early turnoff to nurse with a view.

Then as we were driving along, Travis happened to glance into one of the parking areas along the way.  He yelled, BEAR! and slammed on the brakes.  This time we had time to get our camera!

To finish off the day and the trip, we took a short hike on a segment of the Appalachian Trail.  Hopefully someday we'll be back on a through-hike!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Monday, August 15, 2011

D-Day: Back to work

Well we did it.  I have returned to work.  And survived the first day.

It has taken us a long time to get a plan in place, but we are near enough to it now that I can write about it.  Travis is going part time/work from home.  He'll spend one day a week in the office, and then the other hours he'll get in from home in the evenings, on weekends, and during Andrew's naps.  This means that he'll be Andrew's primary caregiver during the work week!  On the one day that Travis is in the office, Andrew will go to an in-home day care.  I'm really happy with this plan to begin with, to ease baby into day care, and that his primary care will come from his daddy!

This week, I am working half days to transition into it, and next week, I'll hit it full time again.

So today was the first day of mommy going off to work:

And daddy staying home to play with baby:

I bravely drove off to work.  It was so bizarre - driving into work and walking into the office made me feel like nothing had ever happened.  Like these last four months had only been a blip.  I only almost cried once.  In the stairwell up to the third floor, I ran into Sandy, who had been an understanding ear and an adviser throughout pregnancy and maternity leave.  I said, "Can I have a hug? I kind of need one."  She obliged, and that was when I was almost overwhelmed.

But after that it was okay!  I pumped milk twice, and got to experience the small-but-adequate mothers' room that I will see three times a day for the near future.  I saw all my colleagues who welcomed me back warmly.  And I got briefed a little on what's been going on, and my brain surprisingly followed right along.

I am filled with hope that this will be very good, once the scary transition is over and we are in a routine.

When I got home this afternoon, Andrew and I curled up on the bed to nurse together, and we took a nap together.  He smiled and cuddled right in.  Happiness.  He still loves me.

I realized I haven't taken nearly enough pictures lately, so I took a smattering this afternoon.  Andrew is really getting the hang of his SuperSeat.  He's very wobbly, but able to manhandle his torso around to manipulate the toys.  He likes to try and put them in his mouth.  He's also got a lot more stamina for it and will sit there for several minutes without calling for help.

I took a video of his wobbly sitting practice.  Admittedly, it's not very exciting - I took it after his initial attack on the toys - but it shows just how big and strong he's gotten lately.

 More cuteness:

Chillin' on the couch, lookin' like a BumGenius ad:

In non-baby Pine Hill news, we are harvesting tomatoes from our first-ever garden!  We've got Romas, Early Girls, Beefsteaks, and Cherries.  Here was the first one of the year, a cherry:

We're also up to our eyeballs in basil, and we have yellow bell peppers allegedly coming.  They've been large and green for an age.  We have some nice looking yellow squash, green zucchini, and cucumber plants, and they have all blossomed beautifully, but none of them seem to be producing any fruit.  Weird.