Saturday, January 31, 2009

It's snowy outside, and the sledding's easy

My parents gave Brennan a sled for Christmas, and let me tell you, he loved it. Inside. Once Sherri and Brian took it outside, well, he was a little less thrilled. Oh, he enjoyed his first foray into the snow and all, but if he had his druthers, Brian would have just pulled him around inside the carpeted comfort of their home.

Click here for a few more of the smug sledder's first snowy adventure.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Here a snort, there a snort, everywhere a snort snort

The movie "The Christmas Story" is a Thole family favorite. After all, who doesn't love a movie that puts a BB gun, a cursing father, a frah-geel-ay leg lamp, turkey-eating hounds, a tongue frozen to a light pole and a crazy mother together and ties it up with one big bow? I'm sorry, but that's just good family fun.

If you've seen the movie and the picture above, I think you know where I'm going with this.

Sherri made meatloaf and mashed potatoes for dinner last night, and thought it would be a good opportunity for Brennan to try out the spoon my Mom put in his Christmas stocking. Sherri even put the mashed potatoes in a ramekin dish so Brennan could get to them easier. Considering Sherri started our conversation by saying, "Guess who's mommy's little piggy?" I thought it safe to assume that Brennan immediately plunged his face into the dish, but apparently our boy showed some restraint.

At first, anyway. It started peacefully enough. Brennan dug into the potatoes with his spoon and was having a merry old time, but when that became too much work, he abandoned the spoon and dug in with his hands. When that process became too laborious, he picked up the dish, brought it to his mouth and went to town. Grunting ensued, and soon there were mashed potatoes everywhere -- his cheeks, forehead, hair and even up his nose.

But even with food all over his face, you have to admit he's one photogenic little piggy. Click here to see more of the little oinker in action.

It's only gas, but I love it

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Mary Clare's first month

Today is Mary Clare's one month birthday, and what better way to commemorate this event than with a photo shoot? Following in the footsteps of her friends Xavier and Kate, and her cousin Brennan, I made a sign for her very first monthly photo session.

Sorry, no stenciled numbers like Sherri made for Brennan, but rather something I hastily scribbled off in the office. I did, however, take the time to add cutesy little sorority girl dots to the ends of each letter. That's right -- I took the extra two minutes to give my girl dots. Because of the love. I may not own a stencil set, but I can fancy it up with the best of my Greek brethren. Stay tuned for next month's puff-paint poster.

Now let's give our girl some snaps. One month is a big stinkin' deal when you only weigh eight pounds or so.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Four weeks and 21 inches

Yes, indeed, it's been four weeks since little Mary Clare entered our world.

In case you're keeping track at home, Mary Clare is measuring about one inch longer than she did at the hospital. I don't think she grew -- I just think it's incredibly hard to measure a newborn who would rather be curled up in a tiny ball than stretched out on a cold table. In fact, when we were at the hospital, Chip's dad took one look at her long legs and couldn't believe she was only 20 inches long. In fact, he suggested we contest the measurement. I've mentioned that George is an engineer by trade, yes?

Anyway, Chip is obviously his father's son, because one minute he was changing Mary Clare's diaper, and the next minute he was fishing the tape measure out of the kitchen drawer. Who needs a pediatrician when you have a tape measure and nothing but time?

Click here for Mary Clare's latest and greatest.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

And you shall do as I say, not as I do

Brennan met his cousin (or the competition, depending on how you look at it) when the Jones family came into town for a belated Christmas celebration. We weren't sure what B would make of Mary Clare. For that matter, we weren't even sure if he would notice her. Fourteen-month-olds have a way of only noticing things that could harm them, like stairways, hot ovens and open dishwasher doors.

All in all, I would say the first meeting was a success. Brennan stared at her a bit, but refused to say "Mawry," even though he said her name a few times for Sherri just a few days prior. It's definitely going to get interesting once Mary Clare is a bit older and the two can interact. Or fight. Mary Clare may be small, but she's scrappy.

Click here to see more of Brennan and Mary Clare's first meeting, as well as their joint trip to Great Grandma Thole's house.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Buddy the big brother

Chip and I both knew Buddy would take to big brotherhood like a Lab takes to water. He has, without a doubt, exceeded even our highest expectations.

Any unexpected noise or knock at the door is met with a big boy bark and a thorough inspection. Currently, the worst offender is the mail, which has the nerve to show up every single day. Buddy typically camps out wherever Mary Clare is resting, whether she's in her chair or being held by someone. On occasion he even accompanies me to the nursery for the late-night feedings. He regularly treats Mary Clare to a thorough sniffing and manages to sneak in the occasional kiss. When Mary Clare's not in her papasan chair or swing, he likes to give both of those items a good sniffing over. I like to think he's checking for anything that might cause his little sister harm. After all, no one should have to take a misplaced binkie in the bum.

Granted, Buddy has taken advantage of our appreciation (and guilt) by lounging on any and all pieces of furniture that suit his fancy, and the begging has reached critical mass. I can't get out of the kitchen without giving him the last bite of my banana, and he has convinced everyone else in our family that he should have the end of their bananas as well. The amount of drool that appears on the floor during our mealtime is astounding; I fear that he might become dehydrated.

Nevertheless, the good outweighs the bad, and Mary Clare is fortunate to have such a wonderful big brother. Even if he does smell a little funky right now.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

A weak attempt, for sure

Alas, I have neglected the blog. It turns out that everyone was right, and newborns can be kind of demanding. I certainly did not expect this from my child, given how I am known for my calm, laid back demeanor. Darn that Chip. I bet she got it from him.

So, yes, this may technically count as a post, but let's be frank ... I'm really just using this entry to post photos of our little girl. And, as you may have suspected, there are a lot of photos. Consider yourself warned.

Without further ado, I am pleased to offer you two fabulous sets. Those who would like to relive Mary Clare's first days at St. John's are invited to click here. Not into the first five days? Then click here to see what life on Botanical has been like for our little bird.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

TB still has love for B

Because I would hate for Sherri and Brian to realize their greatest fear -- that Mary Clare's arrival would bump Brennan from the blog -- I bring you a bevy of adorable shots I snapped of B on December 23. Yes, that would be just a few hours before my water broke. Little did we know that Brennan's little cousin would be arriving so soon.

Click here and check out the little mad man in action. He's entertaining and harder than ever to chase down. I love it.