Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Numbers game

Here it is, the last day of the month, and I am frantically trying to come up with something to write because the November posts were lacking. 

And I got nothing.

Oh, I know you don't care. I know no one is keeping track of how often I post. But it would totally bug me every time I looked at the archive list on the right and saw that I didn't even make it to the double digits in November. Because you better believe that the paltry "8" next to February 2012 jumps out and mocks me every time I scroll down the page. 

So since I have yet to download pictures from Thanksgiving (of which there are few) and Brennan's birthday party (of which there are few good photos), I am pleased to present to you this random image of Charlie. 

Thank you and good night. 

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Full of thanks

This Thanksgiving marks another year full of blessings, the best of which is Charlie, whose arrival turned Team Botanical into a happy family of five. 

I'm grateful for every moment we have together. 

Even the poop moments. Because, hey! At least our kids aren't constipated. 

*Photo credit to the supremely patient Nancy Williams.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Photog at the park

This past Saturday we switched it up and hit the Tilles Park playground for some new adventures. Mary Clare was thrilled with the "new pawk." Once we got there, that is. When will we learn not to tell her things until five seconds before we arrive?

Since I'm taking a beginner photography class and needed some photos for Monday night's class, I lugged the big camera along. My subjects weren't the most cooperative—or clean shaven—but I was still pleased with the results.

Who cares if the class thought Chip looked like he just rolled out of bed or the instructor called Charlie a girl? I sure as heck am not going to run around taking pictures of the sidewalk or leaves, so they better just get used to these adorable mugs. And the fact that Charlie is a boy. My beautiful, beautiful boy.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Five months, take two

Hey, hey, what do you say? I managed to get Charlie in his five month onesie within a week of his turning five months old.

Three cheers for mom and her pesky camera habit.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Charlie, five months


Today marks five months with our happy little guy. The extreme cuteness continues—dueling dimples, anyone?—and now we are getting to see more and more of his personality. Charlie is easygoing, right up until the point where we know we are pushing our luck, and then look out. The boy can only take so much.

Charlie loves to watch Mary Clare go about her business, and thankfully he doesn't mind her increasingly exuberant hugs and kisses. Let's just say that to a five month old, getting a hug from Mary Clare is close to a full-body contact sport. Without the appropriate gear and padding.

He laughs at the silliest things, is beyond ticklish and loves to be scared. Yes, he loves to be scared. Well, except for the other night when I really did startle him and his lower lip quivered for a bit before breaking into a huge smile. Fear not, his big sister admonished me, "Don't scare Charlie like that, mommy. Idon'tlikeit."

When we're not startling Charlie, we're watching him flip himself to and fro. This past Saturday he finally rolled from his back to his front, and has been doing so non stop. Especially when he's in his crib, which is so not awesome. But, oh, the look of pride on his face!

A good amount of chub is accumulating on his thighs, and his round little belly delights me to no end. Which might explain why he excitedly tracks his evening bottle and grabs at it with gusto. The chub must be replenished, you know. He also discovered his feet this month, and if his socks are off, his pigs are in his mouth. Note to self: Get this on camera and video ASAP, because the toe love is fast and fleeting. And utterly fantastic.

If you want more Charlie bird—and who doesn't?—click here for the October set and here for the utterly pathetic November set.

Brennan, 4 years

Happy fourth birthday to Brennan!

How lucky our family is to have such a handsome little guy leading the pack of Thole cousins. Brennan is an attentive and protective big brother, a considerate and playful cousin, and one of the most thoughtful little boys I know. He always looks after Alexandra, caters to his cousin Mary Clare's demands and is beyond patient. (We still have no idea where he gets that. Maybe Grandma Pat?)

Brennan is the reason I started this blog in the first place, and I couldn't love him and those big brown eyes more. 

Happy birthday, B! We can't wait to celebrate with you next weekend. Mary Clare is most excited to see her "Bennan."

Friday, November 11, 2011

The big five

Dearest Husband,

I've been thinking for awhile now about what I would write to commemorate five years of marriage. So much has changed in our lives since the day we married. We have two children and a Lab, we've traveled together a bit, we've replaced nearly everything in our home and we've refinanced twice, for heaven's sake. And yet, despite the massive changes that life and two children can bring, everything seems the same. 

People often thank their spouses for putting up with the insanity or joining them on a wild, crazy ride. That's not us, though. We're too even keel. Too type A. Too us. So if life seems the same a year or five years from now, well, that's fine with me. Because it's a pretty good life. 

Loves you,

The Wife

P.S. How about that anniversary date? Five years on 11.11.11. Not bad. Not bad at all.  

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Go green

Ask anyone in our family, and they will agree:  Nothing runs like a Deere.

But even a John Deere needs a tune-up from time to time. And so Brennan went to work* on his tractor to ensure it stays in tip-top shape. Because you never know when you're going to need to do some hauling.

*Sherri said Brennan was completely serious about working on his tractor. Nothing was technically done to it, seeing as it runs on a battery and all, but I'm not going to be the one to tell that to Brennan.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Hallmark, take note

Motherhood, like a lot of other things, is often a thankless task. However, there are those moments—the impromptu hugs, the declarations of love—that make every headache and tantrum worth it. Sherri had one of those moments on Sunday.

As Sherri wiped Brennan's bottom following an epic deuce—yes, we're going there—he turned to her and said, "Mom, you do a good job of wiping my butt. Daddy doesn't always do a good job and then my butt itches, but you always do a good job, mommy." 

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

The fireman and the bear

Despite not being the biggest fan of Halloween, Brennan rallied and donned his fireman costume and boots for the school parade and a quick round of neighborhood trick-or-treating. Alexandra squeezed her way into the original Mary Clare bear costume and was the cutest thing you ever did see. My mom was thrilled that another granddaughter was able to give the sweet costume its time in the spotlight. So what if Alexandra couldn't fully extend her legs? It's not like the little stinker is walking, anyway.