Fun Spring Weekends as a Family

Dear BabyBird,

We’re having so much fun on the weekends now that it’s warming up this Spring! I thought the end of last Summer was fun when we were able to start walking, running and going to the park, but your curiosity and mobility this year are taking it to a whole new level.

Last weekend we went to the zoo where you happily pointed out everything new to us, and a few weeks before that we did the aquarium. This weekend we managed to get out early for a beautiful hike along the St. Vrain Trail near Jamestown which had plenty of shade, a little bit of snow, and tons of fun stuff for you to discover! It was our first hike of the season on a real trail (no stroller, just the Ergo carrier) and you were pretty happy with it though eventually got tired of being on our backs and want to switch to the front or just be carried in our arms for a bit.

In a few places the trail went right down by a creek and you loved looking at the water, seeing the splash when we tossed in a rock, and stepping bravely over every log you could find (still with our help!), and almost right into the water if Mommy would let you! You played with the pine needles on a big rock and giggled as Mommy walked through the trees nearby, so full of wonder at everything going on. Even though we made this one a quick day hike it was a big hit and we’ll have to do more like it with a picnic lunch or something soon. You’re so close to walking and as soon as you’re able to totter around all on your own I know you’ll love exploring the outdoors with us even more!

After we got home from our hike we all got another special treat: you got to spend the evening with Grandparents while we enjoyed our first evening night out in a very long time! Actually, as silly as it sounds we miss you a ton when we go out together without you – even though we barely ever do, and it’s only for a couple hours – but seeing you have so much fun with Grandma and Grandpa and the joy it brings them to have special one-on-one time with you makes it a little easier. You’ve started to relax a lot more around strangers or family you don’t see quite as often and had a great night of silliness with them at our house while we grabbed dinner in Boulder and then saw the movie The Hunger Games which Mommy has been really excited for. You were snoozing soundly when we got home with a glowing report from Grandparents – good work!

I know I spend a lot of time working during the week – the whole startup thing can be long days and nights at the most unexpected times – but I’m really glad I get to come home each night and be with you from the early evening though dinner and bedtime and no matter what that time’s all about us. I love when you and Mommy stop into Boulder during the day for quick ice cream or coffee and you’re really lucky to spend two days a week with her. It’s been a great rebalance for us and even if you’re just running errands or doing stuff around the house on the days you two are home together it always leaves you in a great mood and I can tell how much you love getting that extra time with her! Still, being at work five days in a row myself really makes me appreciate the weekends when we can spend the whole day as a family. I feel like I’m getting to rediscover so many fun things that I’m not quite sure why we stopped doing, but are getting a great excuse to do again with you along.

Hopefully we can sneak a real vacation in soon and spend a week this way!

Love,
Daddy

Give and Take

Somedays I feel like the hamster in the wheel, spinning around and around and not getting anywhere. And it’s not just the daily chores of laundry, grocery trips, diaper changes, etc but more that as each hour passes something is not getting done. If I’m doing laundry, then I am not hanging out and playing with BabyBird or giving him the one on one time he is looking for. Or when I am on the floor playing with him I can’t help but to think that I should be doing something else to get a task crossed off my list. It’s one of those days that no matter which one I pick, I end up slacking on the other. So I make certain things are a priority (he’s fed, clean and not about to fly off the top of the stairs head first) and let other ones slip for today. Telling myself that I’ll make that up tomorrow or I’ll do that next time. And in the end it feels like I’ve accomplished nothing more but feeding a tummy, and wiping a bum and spinning around the hamster wheel one more time.

Playing Pretend

Oh what a sweet imagination BabyBird is starting to develop. At the end of dinner each night, when BabyBird is full he will start to hand me, crumb by crumb, what is left on his tray, in his own way of telling me that he is full and does not want to eat anymore. It’s a great improvement from his past habit of just throwing the food overboard and letting it hit the floor with an innocent ‘Uh Oh’ out of his mouth {and yes, he still does this sometimes} but now he will hand me the food that is left, down to the last littlest crumb. So this night, he cleared everything off his tray and then proceeded to pretend to pick up something and hand it to me. I obliged and played along. He cracked up and thought it was the funniest game ever. He knew there was nothing in his little pincher but insisted that I take it anyway. Then tonight he pretended to be done with bath with Daddy and pretending to hand him invisible toys to put away. What a little stinker.

This week was also another milestone and indication that my baby is growing into a toddler, we have officially transitioned from 2 naps to 1 nap. At first, I was a bit hesitant and reluctant on {lossing} one nap during the day. HIs naps are mommy’s time to get stuff done, whether that be laundry, clean up the kitchen, cook/prep, or just to feed myself in peace. I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to make the adjustment. But after a few days, I like this new routine much better. One long nap in the afternoon allows us to to have an outing in the morning and get home in time for lunch and his nap. And this nice {almost} 2 hour nap gives me a good chunk of time to start and finish a project around the house. BabyBird has sneaked in a few cat naps in the car here and there, but overall he has adjusted well to the one long nap in the afternoon and is not too cranky by dinner time.

BabyBird is officially a cruiser. He officially took his first steps a few weekends ago, when moving between two ottomans at home over the weekend. And over the last few weeks he’s taken a few independent steps here and there, but I wouldn’t call it walking just yet. Unfortunately I have not been quick enough to get a picture yet. He hugs the couch, walls, cabinet doors and makes his way around. So I’m thinking in a few more weeks he’ll surely be walking independently.

We said goodbye to his infant carseat last weekend. The carseat that carried him home from the hospital, the same one that Daddy threw in the trunk of my car as he drove raced to the hospital when I was in labor, the one we dragged with us to restaurants, and shopping trips. Now it rests in our basement until next time {no, I’m not pregnant} and a new toddler sized car seat sits in the backseat of my car.

Daylight Saving

Dear BabyBird,

Today was the start of Daylight Saving Time and we had a great day! After all the wind and cold recently suddenly being light out all day and 70 degrees felt like Spring arrived all at once.

You woke up cooing and so happy to see me, murmuring “dada” all morning long as we had breakfast, played, and let Mommy enjoy a much deserved chance to sleep in a little. You still eat a few spoonfuls of oatmeal if I’m lucky but mostly love feeding yourself, especially fruit and puffs! By the time naptime arrived you were so tired that you quickly downed a bottle and fell asleep right on my chest. These times are so rare that I couldn’t bring myself to move you to the crib, so I just leaned back in our rocking chair and we took a good hour and a half nap together. Now the whole family was recharged!

Mommy had been planning to do some shopping but with it being such a nice day we decided on a whim to change plans and instead go into Boulder together. We had a late lunch at Turley’s, one of our old favorite breakfast stops that’s now becoming fun again for all three of us. You love pointing to all the new things in restuarants, waving to random people, and most importantly calling us out on anything we drop or slip up on with an assertive “uh oh!”.

After breakfast we went hat shopping and you got a chance to stretch your legs in the little play area around 29th Street. Even though it was a pretty calm day we found out that playground channels what little wind there is and makes a crazy sort of wind tunnel for those playing in it. You thought it was pretty cool! We ended up at Gymboree and found you a great hat for the summer and then make our usual stop in the Apple store just to browse. Daddy’s getting a new iPad 3 this week and Mommy was quick to remind me that we already own most everything in that store and do not need more!

 

In the afternoon at home I finally got around to installing some cabinet locks in the kitchen (much to your dismay), but you’re so mobile and curious that we’re constantly afraid you’re going to kill yourself on them. Of course, when I asked you to test them out you proceeded directly to the one door that doesn’t have a lock yet (we have an odd number!), opened it, stick a few fingers in, and tried to close it on yourself. More locks will be ordered…

Finally with all the daylight we had a chance to take a wonderful evening walk, just the three of us. Mommy and I used to take walks together constantly when we were first dating and I lived on 6th Street in Boulder, sometimes just around the block or to the park but often all the way down to Pearl Street for Chipotle or Cold Stone ice cream. We stopped taking them as much with both of us working and being busy, but it’s something I’m really glad to start doing more again with you along! We had a beautiful sunset with amber glowing clouds over the mountains as we headed back to the house.

Dinner was fun as always with you meticulously poking through your finger foods while we chat about our day and occasionally (don’t tell anyone!) contribute to your shenanigans. No matter how crazy or simple our days are we always try to have dinner as a family and it makes a great end to the day. After dinner I did your bath routine as usual and we snuck in a little bit of piano before eye rubs, or as Mommy likes to say, “you’re tired sweetie”. As you were starting to snooze on the bottle Mommy and I told you about each of our favorite parts of the day, something we’ve fallen into with your bedtime routine that I absolutely love and hope we keep doing as long as you’ll let us! You gave me a heart-warming little wave, I-love-you chest bump, and blew us both kisses before nodding off for the night.

This is what a great typical weekend day as a family looks like at one year old!

Love,
Daddy