Friday, July 27, 2012

19 months: Cars

July 2012 brings the dawning of a new era: An obsession with cars. I swear that I don't just give him boy toys to play with. This all started when we were living with GaGa and PaPa Wade, and I can assure you they have equal numbers of girl vs boy toys. He just likes cars. As many cars as he can hold.

Here he is holding 5 at a time. This is kind of his max. Two in each hand, and one in the middle, nestled against his chest.

We also had our first visit to a place called Monkey Joes. I'm not sure if this is nation wide, but it's a place with huge blow up structures to jump in. We met my friend from high school, Melissa Wade (no relation to my in-laws), and her little boy Carter.

Owen liked to jump for about an hour, but then he was ready to run.

A boy and his daddy.

4th of July. He stole my ice water. He likes straws, too!

He is LOVING any time he can get in the 'big pool'. Big pool stands for any size pool, anywhere. This one is at MiMa and Papa Cooper's house... and it usually comes with a MiMa who gets in and plays with him. This pool is especially cool because it also has a 'big ball' to play with. He really loves the word big (dig), and will use it before most any noun.

Spaghetti face pictures never get old, do they?

More time in the 'big' pool. Accompanied by 2 footballs.

Still loves balls.. but cars are now tied for first.

Another new obsession: Cousin Carson. He calls him 'Cartoon' which is particularly fitting. He thinks Carson is the coolest, and I must admit.. he is pretty cool. He plays with O, and keeps him cracking up quite often. Owen likes to sit right by him...

In the unpacking process, Owen found finger paints. He wanted to try them out..

Turns out there is a reason the package says 'For 3 and up'.
 Notice all of the cars stacked on books. He stacks cars everywhere. This week he now stacks them on top of each other, in the couch cushions, on the kitchen chairs, etc.
Where's Owen? Should I mention that he dumped the laundry out to put the bag on his head?
Exhibiting his engineering 'knack'. Helping daddy put screws in to our new kitchen table stools.
"Mom, please do not interrupt my light reading time".
Now that I am in the 3rd trimester, I sleep with a gagillion pillows, and he is cuddled amongst all of them. Smart kid.
Lining up the cars as he waits for breakfast.
I'm 19 months old today & I love this truck (cuck) puzzle!

Additional developmental nuggets:
  • This has been true every month, but I haven't mentioned it in a while. He plays with his hair A LOT. It's always when he is drinking his milk & when he's tired. Often it's also at meal time, and thus his hair is usually quite crusty.
  • He sleeps with his stuffed puppy dog (puppy) & his blanket.
  • He's not a cuddler (typically), but he will sit on your lap in the a.m. and drink his milk, & he'll lay his head on your shoulder before naps/bedtime as we sing Jesus Loves Me. 
  • He is still taking 2 naps a day (!!!). God has been very gracious with me. It gives me divided time to get things done/unpack which is great b/c I don't have tons of energy.
  • Often he'll say 'CHEESE' and smile at the camera.
  • We are working on manners. He typically asks for something by saying 'uh uh uh'. We'll say, 'how do you ask nicely', and he'll offer a 'PEACE' (please). Since this worked so well, we are also working on answering questions with 'Yes' instead of 'No'. 
  • The next things we need to work on are keeping food in the kitchen & stopping the throwing in the house (he has a great arm). Thus far, these processes are going slowly.
  • It's been a big month for teeth. I think I counted 5 new.. which puts us up to 14.
  • He loves to dance.
  • He knows more people by name. He'll ask for MiMa, Papa, Cartoon, & Liam on an hourly basis. He also knows Ava by name (Bayba), but he doesn't usually ask for her =) He's having a hard time saying Livi, so he'll just point to her picture when asked.
  • He's working on concepts: Under & Hot. Every time we walk outside he says 'tot' (hot). Yes, Owen.. it's ridiculously hot! He also likes to touch things to feel if they are hot.
  • His words continue to multiply daily. I have no idea how many we are up to at this point, but my favorites are still turtle (toodaloo) & Carson (Cartoon).
  • He's been very generous with the 'Love Yous' this week.. mostly as I am putting him to bed. he doesn't know what it means yet, but he repeats it & I love it. He'll learn the concept soon enough!

p.s. note from me... I am a bit anxious as I write this 19 month post. If my children will be roughly 21 months apart.. that means I have only 2ish months left. Yikes!

Thanks for reading. With LOVE, Mike, Heather, Owen, Oskee, & Baby Girl.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Winter Family Reunion

We kicked off July with a run of family reunions. First up was the Winter family reunion... wait that last name doesn't sound familiar? Let me help..

John and Elizabeth Winter (my dad's grandparents) birthed:
Betty Winter Cooper
(mother of John, Pat, Walt, and Mike)
John Winter
(father of Mark, Peggy, Greg, Ann, John, and Beth)
Claire Winter Politowski
(mother of Matt)
Ann Winter Kuck
(mother of Denise, Barb, and Rick)
Janet Winter (unknown married name)
(mother of several children... one named Butch)

So, all of these siblings are still living and were in attendance (minus Janet). Their children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren were also in attendance... for a grand total of about 60-65 people at any given event.

It gets confusing, so we'll just focus on the Cooper part of the reunion!

This is my Uncle Walt & Aunt Honoree. They are retired & live on a sailboat in the Caribbean. No I am not making this up. They dock during hurricane season, however, and currently they are driving to Alaska.
Here they are swinging Thing One and Thing Two. Kipton & Coleson Cooper. DOB 7-18-11.
Here's Owen with my cousins Kelly (L) & Will (R) Cooper.
Kelly is a navy seal & he lives with his wife Jenn & kiddos in Kodiak, Alaska. They are a stinkin cool family.
Will and his wife Amy live in NC, and they have 3 gorgeous kiddos: Bella, Thing One, and Thing Two. This reunion was my first opportunity to meet Amy & obviously the kids too. I thoroughly enjoyed it!
Saturday we had a BBQ at Peggy Winter Frisella's house (my dad's cousin). Owen & Mike spent most of the time in the 'Big Pool'... one of O's very favorite pastimes.
L-R: Mike, Preggo Me, Jenn Cooper, Will Cooper, Jill Cooper. Here we are watching Owen chase Liam around.... see below.
Owen thinks Liam hung the moon... and shoot, he lives way far north in Alaska, so maybe he did! Liam (3) is the younger brother of Chloe (9). They are the kids of Kelly & Jenn. Liam wasn't a huge fan of sharing the ball with Owen, but alas Owen is relentless and followed him all around incessantly repeating, 'Liam, Liam, Liam, Liam, Liam, Liam'. Actually he was still asking for Liam today.
A great picture! Owen, Chloe, Bella (4), and Liam

Owen and Daddy on the trolley ride!

Owen & mommy on the trolley ride! It was SO hot on that trolley b/c the AC was broken (and it was literally 100+ degrees out), but O sat and was perfectly behaved.

My Aunt Denny (married to John Cooper) is pictured in the background.

Fortunately we got a quick break (with AC) for a shortened version of the AB Brewery tour!

We got to see the Clydesdales.. 'Hoses'. This one was named Mike.

Quick family shot.

Chloe, Bella, & Liam pretending to be mimes.

 Kipton & Coleson trying to stay cool!

The NC Cooper family minus thing 2...

He was sitting right next to me gnawing on a pretzel.

Kelly & Liam

Finally cooling off at my folks house after the trolley ride.

The reunion was a great success... obviously with a turnout of 65 people. It was great to see all of my dad's cousins, and their kids (I did score a babysitter).. but the highlight was seeing all of my cousins and spending time with the Cooper clan.

Next up: The Wade Family reunion in Indiana July 9-12.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

28 Weeks

Today marks the beginning of the 3rd trimester. In some ways this pregnancy has flown... I hope the 3rd (and historically most uncomfortable) trimester goes fairly quickly as well.  

28 weeks (7-15-12) with Baby Girl

Front view

28 weeks with Owen (end of September 2010). I think the belly size looks similar!

I borrowed another pregnancy template from someone else's blog... so I'll give it a go!

How far along? 28 Weeks...maybe just 10-11 more to go! (Will likely be 12-13). Baby is the size of a Chinese cabbage, about 2.5 lbs and 15 inches from head to toe. I'm thrilled to make it to 28 weeks because the baby's lungs start producing surfactant at this point (it's a protein substance that decreases the surface tension in the lungs, allowing them to expand/contract... aka BREATHE on their own).
Total weight gain: 18 lbs total
Stretch marks? Not yet. I never had them with Owen, so hopefully I'll miss them this time around too.
Sleep? Sleeping is hit or miss.. Every night I wake up twice to use the bathroom & some nights I get those awful pregnancy leg cramps. I'm too the point in this pregnancy as well that I can't lay on my left side without heartburn. Our bodies do some strange things!
Best moment this week? Having a functional crib. Our crib arrived without the hardware needed to assemble it, so Mike and Papa Wade spent last Saturday putting the puzzle together, running back and forth to the hardware store, and assuring a functional crib. Their hard work allowed us to actually sleep in our house for the first time Thursday night after we got back from the Wade family reunion in Indiana. We also had a Cooper family reunion the weekend before... more posts to come on those events!
Miss anything? Margaritas! The Cooper family reunion had lots of margaritas... I was so sad not to partake. I've been eating enough ice cream to make up for it, though.
Movement? So far this baby is Owen's total opposite. I had a bruised rib by the time I delivered him. Baby girl, on the other hand... will go 12, 14, 18 hours without so much as a kick. I don't think I felt her at all on Tuesday of this week (it causes me much anxiety). This weekend, though, she's been having a dance party, so I am sure all is well.
Food craving? ICE water. Room temp water (though I've been drinking a lot of it) causes me to be a bit nauseated. Also, cereal with fresh fruit tastes amazing right now.  
Anything making you queasy or sick? The HEAT. We've had a run of days with temps >100. It's cooled down this week.. but I'm having a hard time staying hydrated. I had a close call last weekend with getting too hot on a trolley ride (reunion event). Thankfully Mike ice packed my back before I totally blacked out.  
Labor signs? Negative. A few Braxton-Hicks already, though.
Symptoms? Leg cramps/aches. I think it has to do with my terrible circulation and the fact that I've been on my feet for hours and hours unpacking, etc.
Belly button in or out?  Flat.
Wedding rings on or off? On. They were till the end with Owen, too.
Happy or Moody most of the time? Happy
Looking forward to? Getting settled in to our house. It's coming along, and as soon as we have our new couches, I'll be sure to post pictures.