Wednesday, January 21, 2009

15 months old!

Last week our little man turned 15 months old and today I took him into the doctor for his 15 month well child check.  When the doctor asked me how he is doing with different milestones, specifically walking and talking, I told him there is not much change, if any at all, from his 12 month check 3 months ago.  Mitchell does not walk, at all, and is not even close.  He could walk, but he is not even close because he has NO desire, not even a little bit.  I demonstrated this to the doctor by trying to get Mitch to stand, hold my hands and walk around the exam room, but Mitchell started whining and immediately slumped to the ground to try and escape by crawling away.  This happens 9 out of 10 times at home when we try this.  The other 1 time, he will hold onto one or both of our hands, walk a few steps with our help, then lose interest and fall to the ground to crawl.  Hmmmm....

Next is talking- he only says "Mama" and "Daddy."  He used to say "Dog" but doesn't say that anymore, and I did coax him to say "Nana" one day, but that's it.  I told the doctor that we know that he's behind, but we believe most of it to be due to 2 things: laziness/lack of interest on his part and 2: lack of help from us, as we often need to spend much of our time trying to keep up with Chloe and her needs.  Mitchell often gets his needs taken care of last due to his sister, but he has always been so mellow that his needs aren't always as apparent as his much more vocal sister. 

Anyways- the doctor was quite concerned with these delays, especially his lack of desire to walk.  He commented that Mitchell really needs to be walking.  The doctor told us that we really need to work with him in the next month to try and get him walking and that if in a month's time he still isn't walking, we'll need to start physical therapy with him.  Yikes.....  After putting Chloe down for bed, we started Session #1 of "Get Mitchell to Walk."  It is very rare that we get to spend time with just Mitchell and we used it to play and encourage standing and walking.  Session #1 did not go well.... he screamed and threw fits every time we tried to get him to walk.  It may be a very long month for us with a very determined baby who DOES NOT WANT TO WALK.

Although he does not talk or walk, Mitch understands a lot and has a few new tricks up his sleeve.  His cutest trick started over Christmas break.  We took LOTS of pictures and Mitchell got used to hearing the phrase, "Say cheese!" when ever we took a picture.  He quickly learned to make a very cheesy smile whenever we said, "Cheese!"  Here are a few of the cheesy smiles we caught on camera when we said "cheese."  (He would do it right on cue every time and it was a riot).  

Head back

Eyes closed

Yes, this is a smile..... 


A more recent trick is his obsession with finding things to stand on.  He refuses to walk, but will crawl around until he finds ANYTHING solid to stand on and easily climbs up on it. 

His latest new trick is his interest in his old binkies that he hasn't used since he was 3 or 4 months old (he is an avid thumb sucker).  He has been teething for the past few weeks and has been working on his one year molars (those have NOT been fun for anyone in this house....) and I think he likes the feel of the silicone binky on his aching, swollen gums.

This night, after reading stories, he refused to go to bed without the binky and threw a fit when I tried to take it away.  He is addicted to his thumb sucking and I refuse to let him be attached to both the thumb AND the binky.  I'm hoping it's just a phase.....

As you can see, he doesn't even have it all the way in his mouth and doesn't really suck on it- just chews.  I haven't hidden them yet because he's been in so much pain with his teething that I know it brings him relief.  And- he keeps finding them in places I didn't know they were.  They are the next thing I throw out!  

Wish us luck on the walking and talking.  On a brighter note- only 3 more months until nursery!  The countdown has begun.....

Oh- and his 15 month stats are:

Weight: 26 pounds, 8 oz: 75%
Height: 31.5 inches: 50-75%
Head: 49.5 cm: 97%

See?  His (big) head says it all- he's VERY smart.  I know he has the brains to walk...... 

Monday, January 19, 2009

My new motivation

When we signed up for our gym memberships two weeks ago, we got 2 free sessions with a personal trainer.  After my 2 free sessions, they, of course, tried to sell me on the idea of paying for a personal trainer all the time.  Great idea- if I had hundreds of dollars laying around.  Anyway- at the end of my second session, my trainer told me, along with a list of other things, that one of the things I need to reach my fitness goals is a motivator.  I naturally assumed this would be Ben, as we both are striving to stay in shape and both have gym memberships.  WRONG!

This morning was not a great morning at the Andros house.  There were lots of tears, tantrums and messes and by 10:00 a.m., I wanted to throw the towel in and move to Puerto Rico, alone.  I was already dressed and ready to go to the gym when the meltdowns were at their peak and I finally just said, "Ok, let's just stay home from the gym, quickly go to Costco (to get Chloe's glasses tightened- one of the reasons for the biggest meltdown of the day) and then come home, eat lunch and we can all have a rest."  I said this thinking that this would relieve the stress we were ALL feeling and be a relief for all.  Wrong!  Immediately upon hearing this, Chloe burst into tears and sobbed, "No, no we HAVE to go to the gym!  I want to go to the GYM!!!"  I was ready to sacrifice my workout to try and restore peace in the house, but Chloe wouldn't have it.  I was tired, cranky and quite frankly did not feel very well and really didn't feel like working out today, but my 4 year old has now become my  motivator by throwing a fit that we HAVE to go to the gym.  It was easier to "give in" and go to the gym then to listen to anymore tantrums today.  So we went, I got a great workout and a break from all the tears, and the kids were refreshed and smiling like Jack-o-lanterns when I picked them up from the child care. 

 Anytime I need motivation to go to the gym, all I need to do is tell Chloe we aren't going......  

Friday, January 16, 2009

Eye Candy

They're finally here!  After much searching and trying on and waiting 2 weeks for them to be ordered and shipped, Chloe's glasses finally arrived and we picked them up today.  She has been so excited to go and pick them up!

Our beautiful Chloe in her new glasses in Costco, right after we picked them up.

She was very excited and sat so very still as the man adjusted them to her face, but when he was done, she wanted to fold them up and put them away in her glasses case.  It took some coaxing, but she put them on and wore them while we shopped.  We may struggle with her to keep them on because as we shopped, she kept taking them off and trying to put them in her case, saying, "I just need a break."  We've been over and over with her that there are no "breaks" with her glasses, only at night when she's asleep.  But wearing glasses full time is an adjustment for anyone, so we hope with time that she won't need "breaks" anymore.

In the car on the way home.

The day we picked out her frames and ordered her glasses, we went and bought a Hannah Montana case to get her excited about everything.  Today, she received the red one with a kitty on it from Costco when she got her glasses.  She is very excited about these cases- so excited, in fact, that she wants to put her glasses in there every few seconds just to use the cases.

Practicing her studious look- it's just natural when you have glasses, right?

She wore her glasses while we read stories tonight at bedtime and she agreed that she could see the pictures better (yahoo)!  We're hoping that she'll be motivated to wear them happily as she learns that she can see everything better!

And not to be left out....... Over Christmas break, in anticipation of Chloe's new glasses, Ben's mom pulled out Ben's old glasses that he wore as a small child.  We tried them on Mitchell and it made him look a lot like Ben did as a child.  It was hilarious!

"I think, therefore I am......"

Hooray for glasses!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Holiday Recap

This year for Christmas we headed to the east side of the state to celebrate with Ben's parents and family.  We were gone for almost 2 weeks and we had a great time.  We left Seattle just in the nick of time- we barely escaped the huge storm that hit here, to arrive in Tri-Cities just in time for a few snow storms over there.

The kids had a blast in the snow and wasted no time getting bundled up and going sledding, many times.

They loved it!

Ben was so excited to have 2 weeks off from work and didn't let the snow stop him from going hunting 3 times!

On Christmas Eve day, we had a few errands to run at Walmart (yes, we really went to Walmart on Christmas Eve, and yes it was terrible).  The kids found some reindeer antlers and kept themselves entertained despite the horrible crowds and lines.

You know Dasher, and Dancer and Mitchell and Chloe.....

For Christmas Eve night, we enjoyed extended family over and had lots of yummy food and fun.  Mitchell enjoyed the olives!

Our attempt at a Christmas Eve family photo- Chloe now closes her eyes when she smiles and Mitch was, obviously, not happy.  But Mom and Dad just keep smiling......

All ready for Santa to come in their matching red pj's.......

Chloe showing off all the presents for the eight of us who opened them.

Christmas morning was so much fun.  Christmas is so enjoyable with kids and I much preferred to watch Chloe and Mitch open their gifts than to open mine.

The only thing Chloe wanted Santa to bring her was an umbrella.  She was so excited to see that he had left her one in her stocking.

When she saw it, she gasped, then turned to me and said, "Wow, Mom!  I didn't even tell him I wanted it and he STILL brought it."  (She wouldn't sit on Santa's lap or talk to him to tell him what she wanted this year....) Amazing!  If I know Santa, and I think I do, I'm sure he's just so glad that all she asked for was an umbrella....... I'm not sure what he'll do when her requests become bigger and more expensive!

Mitchell received this fun little car/bike from Nana and Papa and it was a hit with everyone, adults included.  You simply sit on it, put her feet up and the car moves by just steering. 

Mitchell was actually not really interested in anything at all.  He didn't want to open gifts or really do anything except crawl away and whine.  He'd only open something if we grabbed him and held him.

He finally got so cranky that we just fed him breakfast and put him to bed.

All the Andros men, showing off their matching baseball shirts.

Ben's brother Nick, who is going to dental school in New York City, gave our family matching T-shirts.  We really do love New York, but we would love it even more if we could go visit him there!  (Someday, we hope...)

Chloe loved her book with the magic pen that when you tap the words on the page with the pen, it reads the story to you.

The day after Christmas, Ben, his parents and two brothers all flew to Los Angeles for Nick's wedding.  With all the terrible snow storms, they barely made it in time for the wedding the next morning.  Here is the groom and his beautiful bride Cris just outside the LA temple.

The day after the wedding, they all got to tour Hollywood a bit.  Here is Ben with Dora the Explorer.  I'm not sure what he's asking her to do, but I'm sure if he would have said, "Vamos, Dora!" she would have done it.

If you look closely, the Hollywood sign is between them.  (And yes, it was warm and beautifully sunny there while we all had snow and cold).

We had a wonderful time and all the fun definitely wore the kids out!  Chloe fell asleep in a shopping cart more than one time this vacation.  Once at Walmart on Christmas Eve, and...

Once at Sportsman's Wearhouse the week after.

Mitch was exhausted too!

We rang in the New Year by celebrating Megan's birthday on New Year's Eve.  Happy 33rd!  We all enjoyed the amazing chocolate cake from Costco that evening- our last hurrah (food wise) before the Looking Fine in '09 challenge began.  

This was the view at Snoqualmie Pass as we drove home...... beautiful!

Happy New Year!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

"I Wanna Quit the Gym"

Today, in a valiant effort to stay in shape this year (Looking Fine in '09, as we've been calling it), Ben and I joined a local gym.  We had gym memberships right after we were married and kept them for a year or two, then quit.  Now, with 2 kids and what feels like no time to work out without waking up at the crack of dawn or without kids crawling all over us when we work out, we wondered how we ever quit the gym!  What a nice place to exercise, ALONE, and get a decent workout.  So, putting a good foot forward, we signed our lives away and joined the gym.  We got a great rate (unbeatable, really) with childcare included, so we're off to the gym.  Wish us luck.  We both couldn't help but think of the "Friends" episode where Chandler wants to quit the gym.  When things get tough and we want to quit the gym, we'll remember that episode.....