Thursday, December 22, 2011

My Favorite Things

Nate is constant entertainment.  When he was a newborn, people with kids over one told me their kids were "at such a fun age."  And I'd feel defensive of my tiny newborn baby because, come on, he was fun too!  Now I get it.  Babies are cute and cuddly.  But toddlers are hilarious.

Earlier this week we were driving home from daycare and suddenly I hear singing coming from the backseat.  Nate went on singing a made up song for a good few minutes.  (long enough for me to call Aaron and put him on speaker)  I have no idea what the song was but he was so entertained, it was adorable.

Nate's favorite skill these days is "gumping."  Also known as jumping.  I haven't been very successful in capturing his attempt to jump.  He'll walk around stopping every few second to "jump" (he's not able to get his feet off the floor yet) but of course the second I turn the camera on, he's interested in something else.  This is the best I can do so far.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

A little confused

Nate is starting to talk more and more.  Most words aren't really recognizable but he's parroting everything we say.  Although there seems to be a little confusion regarding our friend the dog.  When asked what a doggie says, here is what we get.

Friday, December 2, 2011

December's Underway

As a follow up to my post on our Advent Calendar, last night was the first night of opening a door.  I showed Nate #1 and he opened it to find a Little People purple alien.  Adorableness as he pulled it out, smiled, and started kissing it.  He clutched it in his little hand and walked around with it for a few minutes.  Then he walked back over the the Advent Calendar, put the alien back in and decided he wanted to open another door.  I guess we have another couple of years before he understands the concept of counting down one night at a time.

Last night I also began tackling the task of gift wrapping.  To keep Nate entertained while I wrapped his Hanukkah gifts, I let him play with some of his not-yet-wrapped Christmas gifts.  All the while thinking to myself, I'm sure this is the last year I can get away with this!  I also tried to share my love of Christmas music with him but that was less successful as he spent the evening using the remote to repeatedly turn the music off.

I'm done with Nate's holiday shopping for both of our family's holiday celebrations.  We have 7 Hanukkah gifts and a charitable idea for the remaining night but Aaron and I are still working out the details.  Of course every time I walk into a store, I'm tempted to buy him more!  I couldn't help myself in Pottery Barn Kids yesterday.  That store is just a landmine of cute things.  It took some self-restraint but I only bought one holiday thing, this really cute Hanukkah plate.  (Dara - I almost bought two but I thought Brendan might kill me if I sent more clutter)

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Holiday Traditions

It's almost December and we're starting to prepare for Hanukkah and Christmas around the house.  Tonight I got the first order of business under way by pulling out Nate's Advent Calendar and filling the compartments.

For those who don't celebrate Christmas, Advent is the Christian season leading up to the Christmas holiday.  Advent calendars are meant to coincide with the start of Advent and count down to Christmas.  Nate's calendar has little doors for each day and each contains a small treat.  He will open one door each night until December 25th.

Filling the calendar was fun.  My Mom and I picked up some small things when I was in Cleveland a few weeks ago - Little People, trucks, socks.  I filled the rest of the spots with snacks like goldfish and yogurt melts (and one or two pieces of leftover Halloween candy).

Last year was fun but as he gets old enough to understand the holidays, we're really looking forward to sharing our traditions with Nate!

Nate's Advent Calendar

Open doors

Monday, November 28, 2011

Elmo and Abby and Murray, Oh My!

Our family spent the Thanksgiving holiday in Philadelphia with the Davis family.  We had a nice turkey celebration followed by an action-packed Black Friday.  In the morning, the Davis women braved the outlet mall for a few specific things.  It was a surprisingly easy trip with no crowds.

After Nate's morning nap, we headed to A Very Furry Christmas at Sesame Place.  I loved visiting Sesame Place when I was a kid and I've been back as an adult with my cousins and their little ones.  So I was really excited to share the park with Nate.  There were definitely times during the day I think I was more excited than he was.
waiting for the parade

The weather was perfect and Nate seemed to really enjoy seeing his Sesame friends.  We also made plans to meet up with some of Nate's real life friends, Cooper and Charlie.  The boys had a great time and the park had plenty for them to do.  A recap of our pictures from the day including a short video of Nate enjoying the Elmo show.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

A Boy and His Car

A few months ago Nate discovered the little tikes Cozy Coupe at a playground.  He was instantly in love and every time we've seen on since then, he goes crazy.  So imagine the scene here last Sunday morning when Nate woke up to discover his very own Cozy Coupe!  His grandparents sent him an early Christmas gift hoping he could get some use while it was still warm outside.  Of course, as soon as Aaron put it together, the weather turned too cold for outdoor play.  So now the car lives in our little house.  Nate does not care one bit.  He loves his car.  The first day he got it, he did nothing but sit in the car, get out of the car, put gas in the car.  Now he just needs to figure out how to make it move!

November 13, 2011 (DSC_0723)
Can someone tell me why they added those eyes?  They're creepy.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

15 month check up

This morning was Nate's 15-month well visit to our pediatrician. Happy to report he's healthy and growing! He's still a big kid, tipping the scales at 26 pounds and 1 ounce (88th percentile) and he's 30.5 inches tall (25th percentile). Three shots today, a few tears but now he's done with shots for a while - we got them out of the way so there's nothing at his 18 month appointment. Dr. Burns called Nate "brave." She told us that after their 12-month appointment, most kids cry at the sight of the doctor since they're old enough to remember shots. He didn't care, as long as he got to spin on the doctor's stool, he was happy.

Monday, October 31, 2011


Remember these guys from last year?

Sam and Nate (DSC_4182)

Check out the Davis and Schoch boys 2011:


Nate's second Halloween was a bit more interesting than his first.  He was a kangaroo and he put on the costume with no problem.  But he wasn't into Trick-or-Treating.  At the first house, when our neighbor held out the bowl of candy, Nate shook his head no.  At the second house, our neighbor handed Nate a piece of candy and he dropped it back in her bowl.  For the 3rd, 4th and 5th houses, they put the candy directly into his bag.  And then we called it a night and went home to hand out candy.

After a little while, we went to visit our friends the Schochs and got an updated picture of the boys.  There's a new member of the crew this year, Dino-Will.  He joins Kanga-Nate and Toucan-Sam (Really a parrot costume but how can you pass up "toucan" when you're talking about a Sam?)

Here's a better look at Nate as a Kangaroo:


Friday, October 28, 2011

Vacation for Everyone

I don't know how it started, but when we were kids and would go away without our parents, we called it a "Bear's Vacation."  (I assume it had something to do with these books.)  Well, Nate got his first Bear's Vacation last week with his Harris grandparents.

We started off with a family trip to Cleveland for a dinner for my Dad.  We were celebrating two very special milestones - 10 years of being cancer free and his (second) retirement.  We left Nate with his Grandma and Grandpa and headed back to Maryland on our own.  About an hour from our house, I wasn't thinking and commented to Aaron, "The baby's been quiet for a long time."

The reason for Nate's Bear's Vacation was because Aaron and I were taking a vacation of our own.  We flew to Mexico for some much needed relaxation.  Work has been crazy for both of us and a few days of nothing but sun and reading was ideal.  We had an amazing trip and four nights felt too short but once we were on our way home, I couldn't wait to see Nate.

My parents kindly drove to Maryland to return Nate and they were waiting for us on Saturday night when we got home.  We walked in and excitedly called Nate's name.  He turned around and just stared at us.  Like, "I know you from somewhere, but where?"  It took a minute but then he smiled and came to us, the reaction I was waiting for.

The best part about our separate vacations was technology.  The resort had wireless internet so we were able to use the iPad to Skype with my parents and see Nate almost every day  Not that he seemed to miss us at all!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Watching us like a hawk

I know that kids watch what you do and they'll eventually mimic your actions. But I was really surprised yesterday at just how closely Nate watches me. I let him sit on the kitchen counter for a minute while I was next to him at the sink. He stood up and did this:

Coffee a video by ajd, mhd, njd & gsd on Flickr.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011


Nate continues to impress, amuse and bewilder us every day.  He seems to be on the verge of a language explosion, we can't wait to find out what all the babbling has really meant.  But for now, all we've got is "uh oh" and sometimes a very nate-ized version of "dog."

Speaking of poor Guinness, the most frequently heard word in our house these days is, "gentle!" being said to Nate instructing him how to pet/touch/kiss/hug/maul the dog.  Fortunately G is a great dog and incredibly patient with the baby.  I was terrified of dogs when I was a kid.  I'm really glad Nate will grow up with this big guy.


Much to my delight, Nate has developed a love of reading.  I can guarantee you as soon as walks into our family room, he will immediately head to the book shelf and pick one of his favorite books.  Then it's on my lap for a read through and, depending on the book, either an "Ehhhh" meaning "Read it again!" or he hops off my lap and picks out another book.  Repeat process.  Favorite books right now are Dogs, the Bright Baby set and My Big Book of Spanish Words.

Nate's favorite books (DSC_0411)

Friday, September 9, 2011


Nate is still a long way from actually talking, but for now he's a non-stop stream of gibberish.  Although most things are just sounds, he is beginning to assign "words" to people and things.  We've had MomMom and Dada for a while now.  But this weekend he started using his Aunt Dara's name.  He picked her out of a photo and even called her name in response to her voice when he couldn't actually see her.  It is so cool to watch his verbal skills develop.

The best is when I record him and then play it back.  He laughs and wants to watch it again.  I wonder if he knows what the baby on my screen is saying.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

August Recess

There is a lot of excitement in our house when August rolls around and Congress is in recess. Typically this means Aaron's home in time to see Nate before bed. And this week we've been extra lucky to have some nice family evenings at the swim club.

But the most excitement is reserved for our annual trip to the Outer Banks. We spent last week in Duck, NC with my family and lucked out with fantastic weather.

A trip to Duck means many mornings of fresh Duck Donuts. Aaron and I were glad to share one of our favorite things with Nate.
Duck Donuts (DSC_0027)
Nate loved the sand, the water, the waves, everything. A wave would knock him down, give him a face full of sand and salt water, and he'd smile and run right back in.

As we walked away from our last evening on the beach, my Mom said, "He is his parents child, a beach lover."

PS - A recommendation since I know some of our friends vacation in the Outer Banks - Aaron and I had our date night dinner at the Blue Point Grill and it was great.  Try to get there early and have drinks in The Yard.  We relaxed with cocktails and a beautiful view of the sunset over the Sound.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

First Haircut

A success!  No fussing, no crying, just smiles and finger sucking.  And he helped clean up afterward so all around it was a good day.

July 30, 2011 (DSC_4358)

first haircut (DSC_4365)

first haircut (DSC_4366)

And the clean up:

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

happy birthday Nate!

If you follow our pics on flickr or google buzz, you might be wondering why we haven't posted recently (except for fuzzy cell phone shots).  Murphy's Law - the week before our baby turns one, our camera breaks.  Aaron sent it back to Nikon and they're repairing it.  But that means we were without our camera for Nate's birthday.  I have an old digital camera, back when 3 megapixels was cutting edge.  Thankfully my friend Lindsay is a professional photographer and kindly offered to shoot some pictures of the day. She put one up on my facebook wall and she's incorporating the rest with the digital images from our family session with her this weekend.

Nate's party was a success, camera or no camera.  We had about 30 adults and 13 kids.  I was praying for no rain because there was no room in our house for all those people.  Luckily the rain held off but it was quite warm.  This didn't bother the little ones though.  We set up two baby pools and a slide and the kids had a ball.

My Dad was able to get a couple of good pictures.
What the heck is this thing and why did you light it on fire?


And I like this shot of Nate and my Dad because you can kind of see the wonderful chaos that was our backyard on Sunday.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

best dinner

The other night, Nate and I had one of the best meals I've had in a long time. We were a little late getting home from daycare pickup and Aaron had to work late so we were in charge of walking Guinness. I knew we didn't have a lot of time for dinner so I was looking around for something very fast. There was leftover pizza in the fridge, I grabbed a piece for myself while I looked for Nate's food. As I was making plans he leaned over and took a bite of my pizza. Then another, and another. Before I knew it, we were sitting on the kitchen floor, eating cold pizza straight out of the box. It struck me what a big boy he is and how wonderful it feels to share something you love with your child. Even if it's as silly as cold pizza.


Monday, July 18, 2011

Due Date

Yesterday was the anniversary of my due date with the little man and it's hard to believe an entire year has gone by since I wrote this blog post.  It's funny to read everyone referring to Nate as he/she or him/her, hard to beleive it was Nate in there.
38 weeks (DSC_3665)

We started what could have been his birthday with a gorgeous morning swim.  Nate's taking lessons at our swim club and even though he's the youngest in the class, he's the most fearless.  No tears for that guy.

After swimming and his nap, we celebrated baby Will's baptism with a trip to church and more swimming.  Sam and Will have a great baby pool/slide set-up in their backyard and it occupied Nate until he nearly fell asleep in the pool.

Another nap and then on to our evening celebration - a trip to Dairy Queen!  Nate got his first taste of ice cream by sharing my Oreo Blizzard.  That's motherly love, not only sharing my ice cream but ordering peanut-free Oreo instead my usual Reese's so that we could share.

This week we're getting ready for Nate's birthday party and looking forward to his Grandma and Grandpa's arrival on Thursday night.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Sam and Nate

This is Nate and his friend Sam.  Sam does not like Nate sucking his fingers.  But shoes?  Shoes he likes.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

11 months old

11 months old and growing up so fast!  Nate is walking all over the place and loves exploring.  He recently got his balance down enough to start walking with things in his hands and now he insists on carrying something wherever he walks.  Doesn't matter what it is, as long as there's something in his hands.  This morning it was the charging base for our electric toothbrush.

He has nine teeth and puts them to good use eating us out of house and home.  He is a great eater, he'll try just about anything we put in front of him.  He seems to like anything we eat so we've given him tastes of our curry, dumplings, jerk chicken - he's eaten it all.  I know the day will come when all I can get him to eat is mac and cheese but for now we're enjoying introducing him to the foods we love.

We have an exciting July coming up with a Curious Nate birthday party on the 24th!  We're looking forward to celebrating this amazing year with our family.

eleven months old (DSC_5417)

Monday, June 27, 2011

baby pool

We put some water in our little baby pool this weekend.  Nate loved it.  Guinness was a nervous wreck.  He didn't want anything in the pool with the baby.

NOTHING.  Including, apparently, water.

Friday, June 10, 2011

favorite activity

For a while Nate's been fascinated with opening and closing doors.  Now he loves opening drawers or doors and putting things inside. Then closing the door.  Then opening it again, removing the object and finding a new place to repeat his favorite past time.  As a result, I've started finding things all over the house.  Like a thermometer in Nate's dresser drawer or a block in with the pots and pans.

Here's one of my discoveries from earlier this week:
doesn't everyone store syrup in the dishwasher?

The other day I was fast enough to grab my phone and capture a little of his playtime on camera.  He's holding one of those suction bulbs they give babies in the hospital.  Sorry it's so choppy, my phone was being weird.

After I stopped recording, we went into the our room and Nate crawled back towards his bedroom.  A moment of silence and then I hear a splash and then a thump.
At least he remembered to close the lid.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

10 months

Once again another month has flown by and we have no idea where it went.  The big news here is that a few days before his ten month birthday, Nate started walking!

He's been taking a step here and there for the last couple of weeks but never more than one or two steps.  Last week at daycare pick up I put him on the floor, standing up, Tania held her arms out and he just toddled across the floor 6 or 7 steps, right into her arms.  It was so cool.  He did it again at home from me to Aaron.  And then this weekend he went on a streak and took a lot of steps at the Pratt's Memorial Day bbq.  But he keeps trying to run which just causes him to face plant.  So he seems to prefer crawling for now because it's much faster.

ten months old (DSC_5233)

Sunday, May 29, 2011

May - part 2

The second trip we took this month was to Florida for several family visits.  The three of us flew into West Palm and started the trip with a visit to Aaron's Grandma Shirley.  Nate was an angel on the flight and loved visiting his Great Grandmother.  The open floor plans in the newer homes were heaven for him - lots of room to run around.
grandparents and great-grandmother (DSC_5220)


We spent the other half of our trip in Miami for a family bar mitzvah.  It was a nice celebration and Nate got some quality time with his Davis grandparents.
the Davis Family (DSC_5175)

We finished the trip back in Boca with a visit to Aaron's cousins, Aunts and Uncles.  David and Jess hosted a pool party for our visit and Nate got his first experience in the pool.  Loved it!  He had no qualms about putting his face in the water or blowing bubbles.  It was a great afternoon and the perfect way to end our trip.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

May - part 1

Holy cow, what happened to the month of May? I can't believe kids are finishing up their school year, Memorial Day is right around the corner and June starts next week.

I've been out of town for more than half the month.  Our May travels started with a trip to Chicago for work.  I had to be there for eight days and Aaron can't get to daycare before they close.  So Nate came along!  And as a last minute surprise, my friend Dawn (inspiration for Nate's picture a day) was also in town.  Which is remarkable if you know that Dawn lives in San Francisco.  It's been almost two years since we got to catch up in person although it felt like no time had passed.  And thankfully Dawn's the mother of a little boy so she didn't think anything of Nate figuring out how to wiggle out of his highchair and climb up on the dinner table.

Thank goodness for Dara who generously offered her time and watched Nate during the day while I was in meetings.  Nate seemed to love his time with his Aunt Dara and (dog) cousin Jackson. Whenever Nate napped, Jackson was right there next to him.
Nate and Jackson

Aaron joined us in Chicago for the weekend and took Nate home with him. They had a nice boys weekend including Nate's first trip to a MLB game.  Aaron and I love Chicago and were so happy to share one of our favorite cities with Nate.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Dino Ride

IMG_0034 (1) a video by ajd, mhd, njd & gsd on Flickr.

Santa did a great job this year and brought Nate one of his very favorite toys. Our house is too small to get much walking in so we took him out for a spin on the sidewalk.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

9 months old

Another month flew by and our baby is nine months old. His nine month check-up was great, he's growing on track and meeting all the milestones they're looking for. Hard to believe we're approaching the point where Nate's been with us longer than I was pregnant with him!

Click here for a recap of his monthly birthday pictures.

nine months old (DSC_5097)
nine months old (DSC_5096)

Tuesday, April 26, 2011


This past weekend, Nate's Grandma, Grandpa, Aunt Flannery and Uncle Cullen all came to visit. We had a very busy weekend!

On Saturday, Grandma hosted an Easter Egg hunt for Nate and his friends.  Unfortunately it was pouring rain so we had to move it inside.  Here's how that went:

Guinness thought the eggs were his toys and insisted on trying to eat them. So I ran around after him, Clorox wiping the eggs off.
Guinness (DSC_2809)

Audrey was far more interested in Nate's toys than the eggs.
Kristen and Audrey (DSC_5026)

Sam was a man on a mission, collecting every egg he could find until his bucket was too heavy to carry.

And Nate was uninterested and pretty clueless. He was more interested in the Elmo balloon left over from Charlie and Cooper's birthday party in March.

And then Aaron made the grown ups mimosas and omelets.  So a good time was had by all.

On Sunday, the Easter Bunny visited Nate and brought him a lot of fun things.  For all of our Easter pictures -

Easter Bunny visited (DSC_5053)

And although he looks sad here, he was quite happy now that he's figured out how to unwrap gifts.

We went to the Pratt's for Easter dinner.  Richard and Cyndy are kind enough to host us every year and this year Nate got to join in the fun egg hunt with his older cousins.

Uncle Cullen helps with the hunt (DSC_5075)

And in a very sweet moment, Shailey saw he only had a few, and gave him two of her eggs.
RJ, Shailey, Nate and Emery (DSC_5080)
RJ, Shay, Nate and my sweet goddaughter Emery


This past week brought us two Spring holidays - Passover and Easter. We hosted our annual Passover Seder last Monday night. This year we were blessed with the company of 9 adults and three little ones. Sam was the hit of the meal, munching on matzoh and following along with his own Haggadah.
Sam at Passover (DSC_5011)

Nate fell asleep before any of the excitement. We're hoping he's learned the Four Questions in time for next year's seder.
April 18, 2011

Thursday, April 14, 2011

White House tour

On Sunday, we were fortunate to have access to the White House Spring Garden Tour thanks to our friend Dori.  The day was a little overcast but the grounds were lovely and we had a great afternoon.  The Big Man and his family weren't onsite but we did get to see the First Dog.  Too bad Nate's too little to remember it!
Dori, Aaron, Nate and Maura (DSC_4968)

I could certainly get used to this view.

For all the pictures, check out our White House Spring Garden set on flickr.