Sunday, May 25, 2014

Finishing Up April

I am getting decently close to present day! Hope I can catch up and keep up this time!

Easter was kind of an extended holiday for us this year. We started the Sunday before with the Grubers with a pre-Easter dinner celebration. That evening, after heading to Midway to meet up with my family for our little get away, my mom shared some things from Christ’s last week before his crucifixion. The next Sunday (Easter Sunday) we were excited for Charlie to wake up to his Easter basket. He got some sidewalk chalk and some bubbles. With great weather showing its face every once in a while, Charlie really needed some things to keep him occupied outside, but away from the street. The Easter Bunny knew just what to bring. Later, we had dinner with my family, went for a beautiful bike ride, and had another Easter program where we all shared a little bit of what Easter means to us. Jason and I shared this video.

After some drawing, Charlie was even more interested in lining up the chalk and putting them back in the box. 

The only glimpse of any of our Easter outfits

Easter dinner with the Arbons

Charlie was a little concerned about this bike ride after his experience at Midway...he eventually gave in and started enjoying the ride (while death-gripping the side of the seat).

We went on a couple more “dates.” I say “dates” because we brought Charlie with us. We met up with the Wingers one night for Thai food at Spicy Thai. We finished the night off getting sugar cookies and a smoothie at Slurp. Another night, we met up with Pacadas for dinner at Cubbys (a new favorite) and dessert at Waffle Love. The waffles there, although overpriced, are quite delicious!

We had a fun BBQ get together with Jason’s high school friends. Everyone brought their kids (and their own meat) and we had a great time eating good food and visiting at Nate and Sarah’s.

Camry graduated from BYU! She graduated in American Studies. What an exciting time in her life, and what an accomplishment!! We were all so proud. Too bad college graduations have to be so long and boring, and require two days of ceremonies. Charlie and I were able to make it for both, Thursday and Friday (along with my parents, of course). Jason and Tyson were able to join Friday morning to see her walk and to enjoy lunch at Carrabas. Dealing with Charlie at the Marriott Center was a little crazy and dreadful (especially on Thursday), but we made it through, and I was really glad we were able to be there to support Camry. Congrats Camry!

Thursday Commencement:

Here we the nose-bleeds. Things were quite challenging with Charlie...but we made it almost to the end...thanks to the iPad and Monsters University! 

The graduate!

Friday Convocation:

Thanks to the last name "Arbon", Camry was the first in her college to get her diploma!...which would have been great if you were allowed to leave after receiving it...

As you can tell...Charlie was quite a pill through all of this

Lunch at Carrabas

We got a special visit from the Tuttles! Robby’s brother also graduated from BYU, so they came to town to celebrate with him. It was fun to be able to see them (when they weren’t with his family) and hang out with them. Robby left that Sunday, but Amy and the kids got to stay an extra week. We got lots of family time, and cousin play time. It was great! We always love it when they come to visit. (More on their stay to come in the May post)

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Charlie’s Twenty-Second Month

21 Months to 22 Months
(March 19-April 18)

As I previously mentioned, on St. Patrick’s Day we took Charlie to McDonald’s to play in the play area. We think he picked something up, because within a few days he was really sick. He woke up one morning, and we could hear him coughing in the crib...but not a typical cough. It was a nasty sounding had that seal bark sound to it. I wondered if it was croup. He sounded terrible, but he acted happy, which I thought was strange. Within a couple of days, he still had a cough, but it didn’t have that croup sound. What was crazy though is he woke up that day with crazy runny eyes and a runny nose. He also had a fever, but it never reached 102. Luckily, that day he took a nap for five hours! And even at that point we woke him up to make sure he was okay. During this sickness, he refused to eat most things. He was a very sad boy, and very needy. The next day, he wouldn’t nap at all and was very miserable, but his eyes weren’t runny anymore...which I was relieved about. His cold lingered for a few more days, and he continued to act like a demon. Of course, he refused to eat hardly anything...even the typical staples like beans, yogurt, and bread. I was getting worried, but I waited it out and he eventually felt better and better, and finally started eating like normal again.

Charlie finally learned how to clap! We were in Idaho for Ashley’s wedding, and Charlie started clapping for Daddy (of course). Charlie was dancing around, showing off to the cousins, and Jason started clapping while saying “1,2,3…” and he actually mimicked him! It is so rare for Charlie to imitate gestures like that, so this is so exciting! He won’t really clap much on his own, it is more for attention and when others are doing it. But we will take it….we have been waiting for this moment for a long time! He also started giving high fives! Again, all about the attention-filled moment. He won’t do it if it is just me and him and I prompt him for one.

He can say “go, go, go” with excitement! He will say this most often when playing in the parked car while sitting at the steering wheel. It is often accompanied by a bouncing motion. Really cute! When he is eating something and he thinks it is really tasty he will say “mmm” after every bite. I love it!

During Alex’s birthday party in Riverton (where we were treated with a BBQ ribs dinner) Charlie climbed all the way up to the top of their really tall slide. We were eating cake and all of a sudden I look over and Charlie was already halfway up the slide. I went over there and continued to watch. He made it to the top all by himself! I was so impressed that he not only was physically able, but that he had the courage to go up that high. Once he was up there, he was thrilled, running around and getting near the edge of the ledge (of course, giving me and Nancy a heart attack), but we watched him closely and were ready to catch him if need be. It is hilarious to me that he will climb to the top of the slide, yet he is still afraid to slide down it. He basically has to be forced down, and will only sit forward (rather than turning around on his belly) if he is sitting with someone.

Here is another quirky, totally Charlie, thing...when he is eating cereal, like Life or Chex, he refuses to eat any of the pieces that are broken. He will sort them out of the bowl and put them to the side. He will only eat the perfectly whole pieces. Talk about OCD!!

So we finally started weaning him from his bottle. Yeah, it probably took us longer than what is normal, but it was just a part of the routine...a routine that worked! So I needed the “routine” of that bottle, just as much as he did. He would get three bottles a day, one right when he woke up, one as he was going down for a nap, and one right before his bath and bed. I should mention this is a bottle of milk. He won’t drink anything else in a bottle except for milk...and he still required that it be warm. So we decided we would make the break, cold turkey. It was a hard week, as he adjusted to this change. The hardest time was probably in the morning. When I would walk in to get him from his crib, he would instantly look at my hands and see that I either had nothing in my hands or had milk or water in a sippy bottle... and he would get so mad! He would point at my hands and just have a melt down in his crib. It was kind of funny, but it would take awhile to get him to settle down. After trying to give him milk in a sippy cup, straw cup, and in a regular cup throughout the day..and he kept refusing, I realized he may not have loved milk as much as I thought he had. I think he just loved the bottle! Well, we will definitely be saving some money on milk now!

A few more pictures:

He still loves to color...and his strokes/lines are getting really good

This video is funny because one time he dipped his crayon in a cup of juice, so it left a taste on the crayon. The next day, he was tasting all of the crayons...even though none of them had been dipped in juice. 

Thursday, May 15, 2014

April Business

Mom, Camry, and I attended our first Women’s Conference for the LDS Church! It was the first ever women’s session that included all girls ages eight and over. It was a very uplifting meeting, and we ended it just right with a dinner at Carrabas. Man, that place is great! I love their bread, herbs, and oil...I LOVE their frozen peach lemonade...and I love their Sirloin Marsala. All so tasty!

I did a few crafting things with friends. For the monthly Craft Night/Girls Night we painted mason jars in Easter colored painted, distressed them with a nail filer, and filled them with flowers. I love the way they turned out! It is a craft that will last longer than the Easter will be sticking around through spring. I also had a Craft Day/Play Date with my friends Kylie and Stacee, and their kids. Kylie provided all of the materials and we glued yarn over some old, empty baby food jars. Another cute option was gluing twine around the jars...really cute. Then we filled them with dirt and planted grass seeds. WIthin four days I had little strands of green grass peeking through. It was very exciting.

And here is a look at our beautiful tulips in April:

I got these colors being the most excited for the purple...but it turns out that I LOVE the yellow!

Jason being artsy:

As part of Kids on the Move, I was able to attend a weekly class called Great Beginnings. It was once a week for three weeks and was very encouraging. I went to the class while Charlie had fun at the daycare there. The main strategy I took from the class was taking advantage of opportunities that encourage communication. The biggest opportunities are when he wants something...whether it is a snack or a certain toy...I learned that I need to dumb it down and not immediately jump to do what I know he wants me to do. I have to give him the chance to voice or communicate in some way what he wants. I have been hindering him in that way because most of the time I already know what he wants, so I would just do it for him before he got upset. The class taught us some ways to provide choices to get him to speak up and also to provide an opportunity to repeat the word over and over. Implementing the strategy proved more challenging with Charlie’s personality than I imagined, but I know it is something worthwhile to continue.

We made another trip to Idaho this month, this time for Ashley and Conner’s wedding. We drove up Thursday night with my parents. Friday morning, we attended the sealing at the Idaho Falls Temple. A special thanks to my cousin, Kendra, for watching Charlie that morning so we could go. After pictures, we had a yummy luncheon at a church in Jameston. Later that night we returned to the church for the reception. It was beautiful! The Idaho clan always does a wonderful job with decorating. The treats were delicious, as well.

Making the drive to Idaho

Waiting for the happy couple:

Cousin, Jaydyn, is the best playmate to Charlie!

The luncheon:

Exhausted by this point

Spent lots of time in the Primary room

The reception:

After cleaning up the reception, somehow we still had energy to meet up for some games at Grandma and Grandpa’s house. We played celebrity (of course) and ate some snacks. The party continued the next morning with biscuits and gravy and the first session of General Conference. We left for home during the second session.

Once back in Draper, after the guys watched Priesthood session in the basement, we had a pizza dinner. While the guys were watching conference, Charlie found Bryan’s stash of hot wheels (that he usually has hidden away). Charlie spent the whole night before bed taking them out of the bucket and lining them up. He had never seen so many cars, and he was loving it! He was upset when it was time to pull him away. After Charlie was in bed, my family played Farkle and then watched Catching Fire.

That's a lot of work, people!

After another wonderful General Conference on Sunday morning and afternoon, we met up with the Grubers for a dinner celebration for April’s birthday. Ah, a very busy and fulfilling weekend!

Later that week, Charlie and I met up Nancy and April and the girls in Alpine. The cousins got to play while the women had a fun recipe exchange. Nancy was so sweet and even made several of the dishes that she was exchanging with us so we could sample them. We had a delicious vegetable and chicken soup for lunch, hot pineapple wrapped in bacon and brown sugar, blueberry pie, and a pudding graham cracker cake. Oh man, we were spoiled! Everything was so tasty, and it was such a fun surprise.

For Spring Break, we met up with my family in Midway. We spent a few days there having fun playing games, watching movies, hot tubing, feeding the ducks, eating good food, and riding mountain bikes. We even made it to the Soldier Hollow trail one day for a fun family bike ride. Charlie even came along for a bit in the baby bike seat. He loved first...until the trail got a little intense, bumpy, and steep. Ever since, he has been kind of anxious and scared of getting in the bike seat. Hopefully, we can break him of this fear. One of the nights, my parents treated us to dinner out at a fun pizza restaurant. It was a very fun vacation away. Even though the weather wasn’t always the best, we still had a good time.

Ah...still more April "business" to come...