Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Digital Files

I have been using a digital camera for 5 years now.  Not nearly as long as most, but certainly longer than my mother.  And having all of my 5 million photos organized on the computer by date taken is SO convenient.  I mean, do you remember the terror that was actual film?  The careful handling of the canister, going to the store to fill out that little envelope and drop it off, wait for your photos (1 hr or a week depending upon how cheap you felt like being), and then dealing with the storage of all those prints and negatives.  Heaven forbid you decide you want to find a certain picture you took 8 years ago.  That task would take an entire weekend of leafing through shoe box after shoe box.

The convenience of digital also means you no longer feel guilty taking 24 photos of a dead crab washing up on the beach.  Cause it's free.  Delete the ones less pretty and store the ones you like.  And it's all free unless you decide to send your files off to get actual photos so you can show them to your Grandma.

It also makes looking at dates a fun game.  Recently I started asking Morgan to give me a random date and then we look up what we did on that day for the past 5 years.  It doesn't always work cause I didn't necessarily take a photo every day before the Sam came to be.  But it's pretty fun nonetheless.

April 11
2007, the last time Morgan decided to experiment with his facial hair.

2008, bowling.

2009, I went to City Park with Audrey.

2010, Matt spent the night at our house. 

2011, I didn't take a photo on April 11th.

2012, Sam was 1 1/2 months old.

Go ahead.  Go do it.  Pick a friends birthday, an anniversary date, any date at random.  It's a great little game!  And if you leave me a random date I'll post photos for it.  Ya know, as long as they're not nakey adult photos.  

Sunday, August 26, 2012

6 Months and Crabby

Yesterday was the annual crab feast at Ryan's house.  Always a good time.  A yummy, salty, spicy, nom nom time.  Eating crabs is always a messy endeavor.  Which is why Matt felt it necessary to make a crab poncho out of a trash bag.

Seriously messy.  Behold the carnage left by 6 adults consuming an entire bushel of crabs.

Sam, of course, is too young to be able to enjoy any of this.  But he was a good boy and spent most of the adult hog time playing with his toys and only occasionally needing a pat on the head or a flung toy retrieved.  And he was a sport and indulged his momma's need for odd pictures.

"I has crab hat?"

The evening was rounded out with a run to our favorite ice cream shop, board games, puppy love, and changing a poopy diaper on Ryan's coffee table.  I'm breaking in these menfolk properly to the world of life with a baby.  

Ah, yes.  Life with a baby!  A 6 Month Old Samuel Chase!  Has it really been half a year since I squeezed out my squishy?  That is amazing to me.  Time is flying and he's growing up way too fast.  Yet at the same time I love nothing more than when he figures out how to do something new or wakes up in the morning with feet that look bigger than they were when we went to bed.  I can't wait till our Dr appointment on Tuesday so I can find out what all his weight/height stats are now. 

My 6 Monther . . .
Can sit unassisted for long periods of time before teetering!
Has to be held back to protect him from his wild lunges at things he wants.
Adores the cats and longs to be able to chase them around the house.
Definitely knows the word "Kitty".  If I say it he looks around and searches the mythical beast out.
Enjoys his baby food!  Especially sweet potatoes, pears, carrots, and apples.
Loves his daddy, but wants his mommy for snuggles and comforts.
Babbles in what sounds like sentences.  "Dada bagoo aaaagggg haaaakeeeey!"
Mouths anything that can be drug to his pie hole.
Has become a squirmy bottle eater to the point that I sometimes dread it.
Has been known to undo his diaper if not wearing clothes.
Still can't roll from his belly to his back.
Gags himself when he get too into sucking his fingers/entire hand.
Has the cutest laugh I have ever heard and thinks just about everything is funny.

6 Month Owl y'all!

And then I went a little crazy and decided to take this photo.  I'm sure Morgan thought I had lost my mind as he watched me set up the photo and then ask him to help me with the baby.  But in the end I know he likes it.  I caught him staring at the photo on the computer and smiling.  And look!  Perfect way to celebrate his new found strength in sitting up!

Baby butt!  The cute kills me.  Love this kid!

Update 8/28/12 -  Just got back from the Dr and little mister is 18 pounds 14 ounces, 28 inches long, 18 inch head.  Cripes!  This means he is in the 75% for weight, 90-95% for height and head size.  Lord Humungus!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Stuffed Chicken Breasts

Look, a post without a baby in it!  What's the special occasion?  I got hungry and felt like randomly combining leftover stuffs in our fridge to see if I could make something yummy.  Mission accomplished.

Used:  1 carrot, 1/4 onion, frozen peas, 4 mushrooms, swiss cheese, butter, chicken breasts, salt, pepper, sage, and paprika.  But since this is a clean out your fridge kinda thing just sub in and out what you have.

Dice up your carrot, onion, and mushroom finely.  In a pan with a bit of butter saute for 10-15 minutes till tender and starting to brown.  Season with salt, pepper, and a few shakes of sage.  Add in a handful of frozen peas and then turn off the heat. You don't want to cook the peas, just defrost them since they are delicate and will turn to mush.

Next is the only slightly tricky part.  You have to make 2 cuts in each chicken breast  to form pockets that can be stuffed with your goodies.  To do so put the palm of your hand on the top of the breast and slice into it 1/3 down from the top.  Don't cut the whole way through the breast.  Rotate the breast and do the exact same thing 1/3 from the bottom.  Why 2 cuts?  It lets you shove more stuff in there.  Feel free to only make one cut, but you will be limited in your stuffage.

Lay a slice of swiss cheese in your cut and then make a small pile of stuffing on top of the cheese.  Fold chicken flap over and give it a gentle press to compact it all together.  Don't worry about it looking perfect and sealing.  Who cares.  Repeat with the bottom flap of each chicken breast.  Season chicken tops with salt, pepper, and paprika.

Spray a cooking dish, arrange, cover with aluminum foil, and shove it in the oven at 350.  I am lazy and have an infant prone to crying at inopportune moments.  Hence I don't preheat the oven for stuff like this.  So into a cold oven this went, cranked it up to 350, and 45 minutes later I pulled them out and they were perfect! 

Ta da!

Oh yes!  It was quite delicious!

Monday, August 20, 2012

The Snugg

Project Disclaimer -  I am not a crafty person.  I don't have much sewing talent.  This, a very simple thing that only took half a day to make while Morgan took care of Sam, would be considered very complicated for me.  Just saying.  I'm proud.

Things that Sam like include things with texture, things with contrasting colors, and things that look like those annoying fabric care tags that hang off your clothes.  He has recently taken to falling asleep for his naps while snuggling his burp cloth.  Snuggling and playing with the fabric care tag on the burp cloth.  This gave me the idea to make him a snugg.

So I went to the fabric store and raided the remnant bin.  Navy blue corduroy, ribbons of various kinds, and a bold print featuring anchors.  The corduroy is a fun texture for him to scratch at.  The anchor fabric is very bright and contrasty.  There are thin ribbons with knots on the ends for him to chew on.  Long wavy ribbons for him to grab a hold of.  Thick embroidered ribbons for him to study.  And yet more twisty, loopy ribbons for him to work with his little chubby fingers.

End result?  Sam is very happy with his snugg!  Studying, chewing, thrashing, twisting, and snuggling it like it's his new best friend.  Yes, score one for momma.

"No more photos!  Leave us, we're busy."

Thursday, August 16, 2012

My Week So Far

He likes his teether toys now.  Does this mean he'll sprout something soon?

I don't care about the Bumbo recall.  Why?  Because I'm not an idiot who puts the baby on a table.

We have been prepping and freezing corn.  Lots of corn.

My baby has monster pajamas!!!!!

He has learned the dreaded back arch of doom.  Feeding him is like an Olympic sport now.

Pears are his new favorite food.  But I hate pear diapers.  Sweet Jesus.

He tipped over into this position and pondered life for a while.  

I have too much free time.

Happy Thursday!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Masonic Family Picnic

Morgan has recently joined the Freemasons.  That is pretty much all I know about that.  I hope he enjoys it.  I plan to enjoy the fringe benefits, such as the annual family picnic.  Dude, free fried chicken.

I was pleasantly surprised to see as much young blood as I did at the picnic.  I was expecting for it to be the over 65 crowd and then us.  In fact, there were a total of 3 babies in attendance.  We had fun meeting a few people, making small talk with the men who had interviewed Morgan for his membership, spending most of our time playing with the boy, and avoiding the obnoxiously loud rock band they had hired.

"My daddy is a Freemason!  I don't know what that means."

"Are all these old men my grandpa's?"

"I am not amused."

"So sleepy.  Hmmm. . .boob pillow."

"Once again.  I am not amused.  And why can't I have fried chicken?"

Saturday, August 11, 2012

A Few Recent Favorites

At the lake, taken by Karen.

At the lake, taken by Karen.

I need to hang out with Karen more often.

Cause these are the kinds of photos I strive for!

I have quite a few crying Sam photos cause he usually stops crying when he sees the camera.

Sara visited, she's really good at putting babies to sleep.

Sam with his favorite toy.

He LOVES this stupid tea jug so much!

He gets high on life.

Daddy.  Not mommy.  Daddy did this to you.

And that is all on this Saturday afternoon.  Carry on.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Torticollis PT

Today was Sam's second visit from the Infants and Toddlers Program physical therapist.  He has already shown improvement!  Huzzah!  In case you are unsure what Torticollis is or how to recognize it:

Sam's case, again, is minor.  But here you can clearly see that he holds his head at an angle.  This is caused by the muscles on the left side of his neck being overly tight.  To correct this we do little play time activities and stretches.

Such as putting him belly down on his boppy with an assortment of toys in front of him, his favorites on his right side.  This encourages him to use his right side and helps stretch those neck muscles by forcing him to hold that massive brain case up.

And holding his left shoulder to the ground while encouraging him to look off to the right to play with toys.  This stops him from turning his body to play, thereby stretching those neck muscles in another way.

I also hug him and hold his head against my left shoulder while he is looking out to his right.  Again, doing a long stretch of those tight muscles.  More stretches include actually doing some gentle moving of his head from one shoulder to the other in various positions.  None of these hurt him and he doesn't seem to mind any of them except the tummy time on the boppy (only cause he doesn't like to be in a tummy position that HE doesn't get himself into, stinker).

By far the most interesting thing we do for his PT is the "self righting reflex".  Your natural desire is to see the world from a position parallel to the ground.  Meaning you want to see things right side up and level.  With Torticollis you see things at an angle, but don't want to.  By having Sam upright as often as possible he naturally tries to tilt his head so his chin is parallel to the ground.  Giving himself a workout! 
At eye level, making the world almost level.

 To encourage this even more I occasionally tilt him just an inch to the left to cause this self righting reflex to stretch out those muscles just a tad more.  That is fascinating.  To me at least.

At eye level, over compensating to make the world level!

Sam's PT was very pleased today to see that he has already made progress!  If we keep up the hard work he should be well on his way to normal in no time!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Cowans Gap State Park, Pa

Oh, poor Sam.  Poor, poor baby.  The following photo essay is a glimpse at the trials of his day at the lake.  He did not have a good time.  No, no indeed.  He tried really hard to be a good boy, and as long as he wasn't in the water he pretty much was a good boy.  But oh man, was he not happy about things.
Happier Times

The day started off well enough.  Cute swim outfit - check.  Adorable sun hat - check.  Adoring friends to pinch his chubby thighs - check.  Swim diaper - check.  Ah, yeah. . .swim diaper.

"Ahhhhhhhhh. . ."

Yes, that is the look of concentration of a baby who is peeing out of his diaper and all over Karen's leg.  Me, being a fool, didn't know that swim diapers don't hold urine.  He peed on quite a few legs before it dawned on me what the problem was.  DOH!  At first I just thought it was sweat because it was so hot and humid.  Foolish mommy is dumb.

The lake.  After the BBQ it was time to introduce Sam to the concept of a cold water lake.  The water really wasn't that cold at all.  It actually felt GREAT on a hot day.  But it's much cooler than bath water, obviously.  Here's how it went:
"Ummm. . .no"

"Miss Karen, I said no."

"This is okay.  I can just watch everyone else have fun."

"I don't care about splashing!  I said NO!"

Le Sigh.  He did at least like it when I would scoop up a handful of wet sand and let him smoosh it between his toes.  But that was about it.  Maybe next year.  I mean, what little boy doesn't like to splash in the shallows and chase minnows?  

So no swimming for mommy.  Sam and I hung out on the beach playing in the sun shade the boys had constructed for him.  I guess I'm going to invest in a nice beach sun shade.  I saw a few of them yesterday in action and have in mind what would work great for us and our growing boy.

"I shun you, momma."

"All I need is my rattle ball.  You can leave us now."

We managed to escape the hot day at the lake with only sunburn on daddy, who played in the lake for hours.  "Play" meaning him and Matt would pick up huge rocks off the lake floor and put them on their chests too see who could stay underwater the longest.  Boys are strange.  Sam has a tiny bit of pink on his arms and cheeks, but he's fine.  Yay for sunshade!  All in all it was a fun day.  I just wish I could have done some swimming.  Oh well, next year.  Right?

Learning to play cards, wearing a normal diaper

Napping off the trauma of the lake on daddy's Metallica beach towel.