Friday, August 26, 2011

Curls

Earlier this week I took the kids back to Ms. Lisa's for much needed hair cuts.  As we were walking across the parking lot, Finnan stopped me and said, "But, Mommy, I can't get my hair cut.  I have curls."

Oh, I hope he always loves his curls that much.  At breakfast the next morning, he kept touching his hair and finally said, "Mommy, my curls are still here!"

Pre-haircut curls.  (Admiring Ms. Gabriela's new chicks)

Post hair-cut curls.  (Who is this big kid?)

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The pot-pot



I still have a least a few more months admiring this diaper-clad bottom.  

All summer I thought I would give potty-training Jude a try.  Five days before Ms. Gabriela's play group was going to start again, I realized, if I was going to try it, I would have to do it now (well, 3 weeks ago).  He really did do great.  He enjoyed sitting on the potty, loved underwear, used the potty successfully, and even requested to use it correctly.  But, after about two weeks of consistent underwear use at home, he still could only seem to get it about 75% of the time.  He would even start going, then stop, and ask to go to the potty.  In the end, I decided I did not want to be in the process of potty training for a couple of months.  So, it is diapers again...with daily requests to still go to the pot-pot.

The amazing thing about this round of potty training: it was enjoyable.  I was able to just go with the flow and enjoy Jude's process of learning something new.  I can not say it enough times- having a second child is truly a blessing.  

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Swimming

This summer we spent a lot of time at the pool.  Specifically, we spent a lot of time in "the deep end."  Our public pool has a wonderful zero entry section where parents can lounge around the sides while watching their children play in the shallow water.  My children did not want to play in the shallow end this summer.  They wanted to practice.  Practice jumping in, swimming without help, touching the bottom, jumping in then swimming back to the wall, swimming while on kickboards or noodles, etc.  Thankfully, our pool has adult swim for ten minutes every hour as I got a much needed break from monitoring their efforts.  I think the baby is now intimately familiar with fraternal kicks in the side as Finnan and Jude would launch themselves off my belly.  But, they had a blast and I really enjoyed watching them swim (and the much needed naps that resulted from those hours practicing).  A couple of weeks ago even Jude started swimming small distances unassisted.  He now continually tells me, "Farther, go farther" before he will count to 7 (always 7) and launch himself off the side of the pool to swim to me.   Since Atticus was with us this morning, I brought the video camera to try to catch some of their swimming.

Over the past couple of weeks, I have been trying to get Finnan to breathe while swimming.  So in this first video, he is working hard at keeping his head up, although it makes it a lot harder for him to swim.  You'll also see Jude swimming by himself in this video.



I started this video a little late, but Finnan made it across the pool by himself.  Once again, on the way back we are trying to help him figure out breathing.



The summer pools are closing in a couple of weeks but our local YMCA also has a wonderful pool with different sections for lap swimming, zero entry, and a 4 ft teaching area.  So, we are looking forward to spending a lot of continued time in the water.  I would love to get them both swimming well by next summer, or they will be stuck in the shallow end as I try to juggle three kids at the pool.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Outnumbered


Last week, I had a wonderfully long ultrasound.  Since the ultrasound tech was training an intern, Atticus and I got to spend over a half hour with our third baby boy.   Yes, third boy.  It seems that many people's reaction to a third boy is one of shock.  Some almost seem to cringe, assuming that I was trying for a girl.  Really, that was not the case at all.  After two boys, I really am I boy mom.  I can handle sand tracked through the house, muddy hands and faces, and balls flying too close to the lamps.  I treasure watching my boys build together and fly like airplanes through the house.  I have become a master super-train-track builder and know all the rules to dump truck soccer.  Of course, I would have been thrilled with a girl as well.  But, we are grateful and very excited to meet our little guy come December.

This pregnancy has definitely been the most challenging of my three.  I spent the first few months exhausted, barely making it nap time and then retreating to my bed almost as soon as Atticus got home.  At times, I found it very difficult to enjoy being a mother to the two boys I had.  Although, I am feeling better, hours in the sun and having both boys home all summer has still left me pretty worn out.  I am also still experiencing waves a nausea, for which I have to be more careful about what I eat than I normally would.  This should explain the lack of blog posts (and really my lack of accomplishments in general) over the last couple of months!  

While the boys won't bring up their baby brother randomly, they do seem excited when he is mentioned.  When I showed the boys the picture of my first ultrasound back at 9 weeks, Finnan knew exactly what he was looking at and started immediately smiling.  Jude was very excited to see that there was "Popcorn!" in my belly.  Now, if I ever talk about the baby, Jude will insist, "No!  Baby in MY belly" and lift up his shirt.  (He is in a very contradictory phase!)  We don't talk about the baby with the boys that much yet. I do think Finnan understands what he is in for (the good and the challenging).  I think Jude, on the other hand, may have some adjustment to no longer being the baby.  But, he is extremely lucky that he has Finnan to entertain him and guide him through the process.  I am just over half-way to the end of the pregnancy, but we still have a lot to accomplish.  Namely, finishing the upstairs, moving the boys up there, and putting together a nursery.  I am lucky I don't have to add in any shopping for clothes in that mix :) 

And, here is the charming, "It's a boy!" picture that I have seen a few time before...

Monday, August 1, 2011

Navarre Beach, 2011

My family's vacations always revolved around our athletic schedules and often consisted of visiting family, so before marrying Atticus, I never spent a week at the beach, or any time in a condo right at the beach.  As you can imagine, I love the LeBlanc family tradition of going to Navarre Beach for a week every summer.   I have already mentioned how much I love that the cousins can spend time reconnecting, but it is nice for all of the kids to have so much concentrated time with their grandparents and their aunts and uncles.  And, Navarre Beach is perfect- perfect sand, perfect water, and little crowds.  My favorite two things about Navarre though are the bay and the Gulf Islands National Seashore.  Going to the beach with young kids has been hard- there are nap times, sunscreen, fears of the ocean, and sandy bottoms but this year things definitely seemed easier.  Below are some pictures from our week at Navarre.

Paw-paw and Jude having a laugh.

Finnan attempting to protect the sandcastle from the waves.

Mama getting some loving on the beach.

Cuddled up watching a movie on a rainy day.

On the boat on the way to "Finnan's Beach," "Jude's Beach," and Madeline's Beach." They all happen to be right next to each other on the bay :)

Flying in the bay.

Watching a hermit crab at the bay.

Though Jude did not like swimming in the ocean, he loved the bay.  

Touching a crab they caught.

Trying to catch crabs at the bay.

Collecting shells at the National Seashore- miles of beach and just us.

A happy boy at the National Seashore.

My new favorite picture.  Clearly their shorts were not suitable.  Atticus turned out to be quite into crabbing and obviously the boys liked admiring everything he caught.  

After the shorts completely gave out.

Finnan guarding Atticus' catches and Atticus out looking for more.