Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Oscar is 15 Months Old!


Well, the crazy chunky monkey, Oscar, is already 15-months old.  What happened at 12 months that has all of a sudden made him a toddler? It's like there's a switch and they know to start acting older.

Stinks' personality is a big one and I love it so. He loves being vocal and silly. Before we get to that, let's look at his stats. If you're curious, here are Walt's 15-month stats.

Weight: 27lbs 7 oz (99%+)
Height: 33.5" (99%+)
Head: 19.8" (100%+)

So, he's huge. Duh. Nothing has changed. Weird that Walt weighed more. I think Oscar is way chunkier.

Loves:

  • Eating (Please refer to his stats above)
  • Playing with Bentley
  • Playing on the couch
  • Watching Elmo
  • Pointing and playing with cars
  • Riding in his red wagon or stroller outside
  • Being outside
  • Going bye-bye... he waves and gives everyone kisses and repeatedly says "Bye bye!"
  • Books - especially ones with lots of pictures of animals
  • Dogs :)
  • Dancing. This boy can bebop to anything and I love it!
Hates:
  • Being wiped clean
  • Wiping his nose
  • Taking medicine (though he'll do it)
  • Getting his diaper changed - but, we've recently been able to circumvent this by handing him a book with animal pictures
  • Being in the car when it's not moving (random)
Oscar is starting to talk a lot, which is really fun. Here is a list of some fun words he says:
  • Da-dee (daddy!)
  • Mama
  • Car
  • Elmo
  • Up
  • Please
  • Thank you (not often does he say it, but he can sign it)
  • Shoes
  • This 
  • That
  • UH (this is how he says "Walt")
  • Bubba
  • Pup-eee (Puppy!)
  • *shakes his head no*



I love the talking phase. I feel like he learns a new word every single day. He's so into hanging out with people and trying new things. Happy 15-month bday. little man!

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Mother Son Dance

There are many perks of being the mom to boys, but one thing stands out. No, not being able to cheer at sports games (still fun!). No, not dancing together at his wedding (*tear*).  It's definitely taking part in the Mother-Son Dance! I also know this is a VERY small window that I can get away with this.  At some point it won't be cool, but he doesn't have a choice now :)

I was tickled to see that the theme this year was 80s. A personal favorite decade and party theme.  Some of my neighborhood friends with sons decided to go together and we totally committed to dressing the parts.  Walt was a fantastic date! He had fun dressing up ("Mom, why am I wearing two shirts"), he loved his new shoes (thanks to Daddy, he refers to them as Cons or "shoes with strings"), and he REALLY loved dancing.

Thankfully, they split the dance for older and younger kids, so ours was 5-7 p.m. Since Walt is early to bed, this was great for us.

What a cute, little prepster

I wasn't really going for tacky, borderline hussy 80s, but....
This hair. OMG.  Nice to know my hot rollers still work.
Look at this good-looking group!
Me and my date <3

Someone really enjoyed learning how to break dance.

At first,  Walt wasn't a big fan of the LOUD music, but he still had a smile one his face
 
Some totally rad mamas!
 
My main Munks

Austin and Walt ready to cut a rug!


Monday, September 15, 2014

Bentley Bruns

Chris and I are both really big animal lovers. When we first met, he had a dog (Sally Pants) and I had a cat (Madison). They were both rescues and they both had really terrible personalities.  Sally was a really, really, really good dog. She never did anything wrong, but she hated everyone (with the exception of a very few).  Madison just flat out hated everyone. Even me sometimes.

We have this really bizarre journey with animals. We lost Madison on our honeymoon (she developed complications with diabetes and my BFF Stori had to put her down. Now THAT is true friendship).  We lost Sally the day we brought Walt home from the hospital. While tragic, it was probably best that we were pet-free while we started to expand our family.

How do you not love this face??
But, getting another furry family member was only a matter of time. We talked about it a lot. It started feeling "right" soon after Oscar turned one.  We also had a lot of criteria, so we were willing to wait to find the perfect dog. Some things we were looking for:

  1. Absolutely had to be a rescue
  2. We did not want a puppy and ideally looking for 1-2 years old
  3. We were hoping for a medium-sized dog (like Sally). About 40 lbs
  4. We were very interested in low-dander dogs, like poodle mixes.  There's no such thing as hypoallergenic, but it couldn't hurt
I found myself on PetFinder and AdoptAPet almost daily. It's amazing how often the available dogs change. We also made frequent visits to Petsmart and Petco to get the boys acquainted with different dogs. 

This nose.
Then one morning, I saw Bentley come up on my Pet Finder search. His picture said it all. He had a blonde coat and big, black nose. He was at the Denton Humane Society and I inquired immediately.  Normally, they do not adopt out dogs to families with children as young as us, but they were willing to give Bentley a go (or give us a go, I should say).

He came over for a visit a few Saturdays ago and I'm not sure he could have been sweeter. He simply wanted belly rubs, and he let Oscar squeal in his face and pull on his fur.  The rest is history. He is ours now and immediately folded right into the family.  He is so happy to have Chris home every day and happily lies in his office, ready to help if Chris needs it.  Bentley loves going on walks and REALLY loves chasing tennis balls.  We are so excited to have him a part of our family!
Walt during our home visit

Oscar helping me get stuff to make Bentley feel comfortable in our new house


A happy guy on our first day!

Bentley and me enjoying his new backyard


Oscar loving on Mr. B!


Saturday, September 6, 2014

Chaos Soccer

Let the organized sports begin!  I remember hearing from friends who have older kids when they said, "We signed 3-year-old Mikey up for soccer," and thinking, "Wow, that seems really young." Now I find myself counting down the months until Walt is eligible for sports because he's totally ready!
Our little futbol guy!
Let me clarify what I mean by "ready". Walt knows what a ball is. Any kind of ball. Walt knows how to walk and run. Walt knows how to listen 50% of the time.  Walt likes to have a good time. That's about all that's needed.

Number 8
Team Chaos!
It's so fitting that the team name is "Chaos". It's eight 3 and 4 year olds (mostly 3). They run around like 3 year olds do. They goof off. They antagonize each other. And, every so often someone kicks the ball in the goal.  It's definitely obvious the kids who have older siblings. They have been self-taught since birth.

Buddies - Walt and Austin
Chris and I both played team sports growing up (and I was on a dance team as well... totally a sport, by the way), so I think we enjoy all the non-athletic benefits that come along with this. I don't have a preference whatsoever in what sports Walt plays (the truth is that I want to create a boy band, so I hope both the boys try dance). Neither Chris nor I know the first thing about soccer. (Not true: I know what the objective is. I just don't know all the positions and strategies...) This has been a great experience so far.

We can't wait for lots more games and cheering in our future!
Taking some tips from Coach Tony!

Bench time! Watching our fellow players.





Friday, September 5, 2014

VEGAS!

We are so very lucky that we have so many people willing to watch our kids. Even still, it has taken us 18 months to coordinate a getaway with just Chris and I. Granted, Oscar was born during that time, so we get a pass on that.

Even though we have lots of loving help with the boys, it takes weeks to prepare to be gone for three days. Given the short time frame (I'm not ready to leave the boys for a week!), we had to be very particular about our vacation spot. If there were no limits, I'd be on a beach in Mexico in no time. No question. But, time and money win this battle and it's damn cheap (and quick) to go to Vegas. Besides, I can close my eyes at the pool and pretend I'm at the beach. Close enough.

Off we go! I love this handsome man :)
We stayed at The Mandalay Bay. I've stayed several times for work and always longingly looked at the pool area. Plus, they've redone THEhotel to be "The Delano" (a la Miami). Not bad.  My feedback on the hotel? Not bad.  We should have splurged on a nicer room or The Delano. Our room was fine...just meh. It was dirt cheap, though!

Looks like a beach, right?
Beer, sun, water, waitress... sounds like the beach to me!
We basically had Facebook guide us to nearly all our eating spots.  That was a fun game.  Here's where we hit up:

  • Ri Ra Irish Pub - Mandalay Bay - not bad. Authentic pub atmosphere. Good for a casual lunch.
  • Kumi Japanese Restaurant and Bar - Mandalay Bay - really good, but also pretty pricey. We ate a roll called "Hot Mess" that was pretty amazing.
  • Citizens - Mandalay Bay - this 24-hour cafe became a favorite of ours. We ate here twice. It's so reminiscent of a NY cafe with a super trendy edge to it (thanks, probably, to the fact that it's owned by The Light Group). Great coffee. Awesome breakfast. Highly recommend. (PS this one we found on our own).
  • Burger Bar - Mandalay Bay - (I swear we left the hotel). This was a recommendation and it did not disappoint. As suggested, we ate the kobe beef burger and it was SUPER yummy.
  • Rose. Rabbit. Lie. - Cosmopolitan - This was an incredibly unique experience. The Cosmo hotel itself is in its own league. So uber trendy. Everything is a spectacle. We will stay here the next time we come :) Back to the food - this restaurant used to be a performing restaurant. There's a stage, but the action happens all around you in all this little rooms. Even without the entertainment, the set up was wicked. Oh, and the food was yummy too. Unique twist on comfort food (I had short rib stroganoff......)
  • Border Grill - Mandalay Bay - great lunch spot with outdoor patio option (by the pool). Like many restaurants in Vegas, this one is run by celebrity chefs (Top Chefs).  I thought this was a great, modern take on southwest food. It was tricked up, but just slightly. Amazing guacamole and I had some super fresh chicken tacos. Great casual spot.
  • Prime - Bellagio - This was our super fancy splurge meal (after all, we WERE celebrating our 5-year anniversary). This restaurant is located right on the Bellagio fountains, an absolute fave of mine in Vegas.  Thanks to a tip, we were lucky enough to get a table by a window to see the water show during dinner. This was definitely the best part. The food at Prime was really awesome, but it was "just like any other fancy steak place" to us. Service was outstanding. Decor was old fashioned (as most steak places are). Not sure we'd go back, but it was totally worth it for the experience we had.

Look how lovely those fountains are!
We also entertained ourselves with two Cirque de Soleil shows. The first, a relatively new one: Michael Jackson's One. It did NOT disappoint. I be-bopped in my seat the whole time and definitely cried during it too. A great homage to a great performer :)   We also saw Mystere. As one of the original Cirque shows, this had lots of classic elements: very quirky imagery, focus on the stunts and performance, and some comic relief. I really enjoyed it.

Dad gave me $100 to play on video poker. This is what I walked away with...wah wah.
Other than eating and seeing shows, we gambled some and mostly enjoyed just walking around and spending time with each other. It was a fabulous vacation, and I can't wait for the next.




So fun!