Again with everything into the mouth.
Month: January 2010
One of my favorite baby gifts for Alex is now one of his favorites too. We received this personalized blanket from my mother’s cousins shortly after Alex was born.
The blanket tells Alex’s full name, birthdate, birth weight, birth length, and the names of his mommy and daddy. When I looked at the company’s website, they offer to include all sorts of information on the blanket – sibling names, pet names, baptism information etc. and have five choices of color.
The website is theblanket.com. I can’t wait for someone to have a baby so I can order one!
Constantly on the go.
Abram came to play.
We started the day with a trip to Rhyme Time at the library and then an indoor game place with Abram and Amber. The boys quickly figured out skeeball was easier played together:
After a nap in the car and a quick lunch we were off to play time at Gymboree:
Alex got another nap in before we played and waited for Daddy to come home:
Waiting for Daddy to come home.
Yes, this is Madison’s bone.
A really laid back one. Alex is still putting everything in his mouth and I haven’t found too much I feel the need to immediately take away:
The lens cap is definitely a favorite for chewing.
About to wake up an unsuspecting Daddy.
Alex is a busy little boy and into everything!
Alex tries an apple wedge.
Alex had a cranky-pants-kind-of-day. The only thing that made him happy was the ice cream carton in the recycle bin.
I didn’t realize how perfect the Cranky Pants were when I got Alex dressed today. After not sleeping most of the night he ended up with a total of 1.5 hours worth of naps. (His typical day has 3-4 hours.) All of this made for one unhappy little boy.
He did pretty well at our Gymboree class with all of the other kids to play with. The only two other things that made him happy were the ice cream carton in the recycle bin
and his bath:
I put him to bed extra early and then tried a new recipe.
Dinner was awesome! I highly recommend Almond-crusted Chicken (recipe from Better Homes and Gardens)
4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 Tbsp. buttermilk
1/2 cup finely chopped almonds
1/2 cup panko
2 tsp. snipped fresh rosemary
1/4 tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. canola oil
1 shallot, chopped
8 cups fresh spinach leaves
1/4 tsp. salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1. Place one chicken breast half between sheets of plastic wrap. With flat side of meat mallet, pound chicken to 1/4- to 1/2-inch thickness. Repeat with the remaining breast halves.
2. In shallow dish whisk together egg and buttermilk. In another shallow dish combine almonds, panko, rosemary, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Dip chicken breasts, one at a time, in egg mixture, turning to coat. Allow excess to drip off, then dip chicken pieces in almond mixture, turning to coat.
3. In 12-inch nonstick skillet cook chicken, half at a time if necessary, in hot oil over medium heat for 4 to 6 minutes or until no longer pink, turning once halfway through cooking. Remove chicken from skillet; keep warm.
4. In same skillet cook shallot in drippings 3 to 5 minutes or just until tender, stirring frequently. Add spinach and 1/4 teaspoon salt; cook and toss about 1 minute or just until spinach is wilted. Serve chicken with wilted spinach. Sprinkle pepper.
Morning kisses from Madison.
A typical morning at the Burch house:
Alex wakes us up around 7 am:
We have to make sure to get all the required blankets out of the crib:
Every reachable toy is pulled out:
Then Alex checks out Madison:
After breakfast, Madison checks Alex to make sure his mouth is clean:
Next up is a morning nap – thank goodness. I’m always worn out at this point.
You thought it was an Oreo didn’t you? It’s actually the lens cap to my camera.
Alex has finally mastered the sippy cup (goodbye bottles). He’s been drinking out of one for a while, but had to be on his back. In the last few weeks he finally understands that he can drink sitting up if he raises the cup at an angle.
As for the next picture:
You thought it was an Oreo didn’t you? It’s actually the lens cap to my camera.
I’ve had a lot of work to do this week and some of it was due today. Alex took a 2 hour morning nap – thank goodness – but I had a little work left to finish. It turns out the gun to my Area 51 game is endlessly fascinating. I can’t wait till he is old enough to play!
Alex has given up the nuk, but now chews on his blankets.
Monday means Mothers Day Out, which normally means we are rushing to get out the door. Today was nice and leisurely. Alex was dressed and happy to pose for some pictures:
I have mentioned Alex’s current love of his Angel Dear blankets. Here is what I see most often when looking at Alex:
Eating Daddy’s birthday muffin.
We started off the day with Birthday muffins – a Harper family tradition.
Alex joined in and provided quite a bit of amusement. It took a little bit for him to figure out what to do with an entire muffin:
Learning to play tug with Madison.
Quite content in front of the fire.
Learning to share (Madison is quite tolerant of this – thank goodness)
Holly wanted me (Wade …. her husband) to write this post for her because a lot of folks have been making the same comment.
“Your photos are not nearly as bad as they used to be. What happened?”
As it turns out Holly and I both used to like photography a lot. I worked in a darkroom at the college newspaper for quite a while and Holly shot a lot during her international travels as a teenager. Then we got married and forgot about hobbies that didn’t include repairing old houses. In fact the first 4 years of our marriage were documented by a variety of low quality point and shoot cameras which worked fine for us. But when Alex arrived Holly wanted to have nice pictures for her blog and to share with our family far away. So I got the job of buying a camera…
I had a Canon Digital Rebel with a decent lens but it was old and had some issues with the sensor. Luckily we had a photographer friend who was upgrading her gear. So we ended up buying her secondhand Canon 5D (not the newer 5D Mark II). It is a digital SLR camera which means you can switch out the lenses. The 5D is a nice camera which has lots of fantastic features that we are only beginning to learn. But the real trick to getting it to take nice pictures it to invest in a high quality lens.
Most consumer DSLR cameras come as a kit which include a few low end lenses. These lenses usually have a high f-value, something like 3.4-5.6. Generally speaking the f-value is the amount of light a lens allows through to the camera sensor. Lower numbers allow more light in. The benefit is that pictures can be taken in lower light without a flash. They have richer colors. And at very low f-values you get a shallow depth of field which means your subject is in focus and the background is nice and blurry. These type of pictures can look really great.
So along with the 5D we purchased a Canon 50mm 1.4f prime lens. A prime lens is one set to take pictures at a particular zoom. So if we want to get a close up of the boy we have to move the camera close to him. Although this is a drawback, the 1.4 f-value makes for some wonderful images especially indoors without a flash.
We have loved this camera and lens but there are times when it is difficult to work with. Shooting at a low aperture setting (f-value) results in a very shallow depth of field so often times parts of a picture are not in sharp focus. And if something is moving during a dimly light shot, the picture gets motion blur. So for Christmas Holly and I got a Canon 580EX Speedlite. This is a flash that mounts to our camera body and has been great especially for indoor shots.
Next up we are planning on getting a Canon 24-70mm 2.8f lens. This is considered one of the best all around lenses. And best of all we can finally zoom in and out!
Some days just aren’t quite as good as others.
The first trip to the dentist was a success.
We went to Small World Dentistry first thing this morning. I didn’t think to take a picture during the trip, but Alex did great. Dr. Rick was was a lot of fun. They looked over his teeth and brushed them. In 6 months they will perform a real cleaning. Alex enjoyed playing with his toothbrush when we got home.
Loving on his frog.
It appears Alex might have all the teeth he is going to get for a while – thank goodness. I have recently noticed a decrease in the amount of drooling so I looked up a chart on baby teeth:
According to this, Alex got most of his teeth (8 at the moment) on the early side of the range. He should have a couple of months of no new teeth.
Tomorrow is Alex’s first trip to the dentist.
Alex and I played this morning while Daddy slept. I think Alex is becoming attached to his Angel Dear blankets. We’ve always had one in the crib and he now wants to take it with him when he gets up. Then he carries it around while playing. He doesn’t seem to miss it if it is out of sight and has no preference over which one – we have the puppy, moose, bear, monkey, and frog.
Alex has also discovered that he can take all of the toys out of his drawer and get in it. I’m not sure what the appeal is, but he loves it
Showing off all his teeth.
Alex loved watching Daddy outside shoveling snow (we got another couple of inches overnight):
After nap time, we went bowling with Amber, Nick, and Abram. I bowled a shocking four strikes in a row. Abram attempted to bowl, but had more fun trying to run down the lane before Nick caught him.
Watching everyone clear the driveways.
I’ve been waiting for today all winter – we got lots of light, fluffy snow. It has snowed all day and is supposed to continue through till tomorrow morning.
Madison and I played a little while Alex napped:
We waited for Wade to get home to introduce Alex to snow. The only time Alex cried is when he stuck his face in the snow. Otherwise he just crawled around or was content to be carried. I’m not sure he actually noticed the white stuff.
Then Alex and I went to visit Amber and Abram while Wade cleared the driveway. Abram let Alex ride in his sled. The next picture was taken right before Alex dumped a mitten full of snow in Abram’s face.