We spent this morning at Clemyjontri sweating to death in the oppressive heat and humidity. It was so hot that Roman couldn’t crawl – the surface of the playground was burning his poor little hands! He did a great job walking around and walked a lot while holding my hand. Despite the heat the kids still had a great time and enjoyed a few rides on the carousel, which thankfully is in the shade and is quite comfy.
We hit some traffic coming home and the kids ate their lunch in the car. Harper was asking for chocolate milk the entire ride home, and when we finally arrived we had the following conversation:
Me: “Do you want your chocolate milk now?”
Harper: “No thanks, Mommy. I’m just too tired.”
She then proceeded to walk upstairs, climb into bed by herself and sleep for the next 3 hours. I seriously have the best kids in the world! When she woke up she immediately said “Oh! I need to go potty! Hurry hurry, let’s run to the potty!”
Here are a few photos from the park. Roman’s little face was beet-red from the heat. Poor guy!
Roman enjoying his first solo ride on the carousel. He held on tight and giggled the entire time!
I’ve had two very different customer service experiences over the past week or so that I thought I would share. To start, Portman bought a new HE washer & dryer on clearance at Best Buy about 4 weeks ago. They were supposed to arrive two weeks ago, so we sold the old ones on craigslist and had them picked up a few days ahead of time. Well, delivery day rolled around and the truck showed up with a washer… and no dryer. When we called Best Buy they told us that since it was a clearance item there were none in stock. I’m sure you can imagine how annoying this was for a family of four to be without a dryer! After much protest and arguing and additional discounts for us, they finally found a floor-model in some flyover state that they agreed to ship to us a week later.
Flash forward to this past Monday. The delivery truck showed up on time with… another washer. I’m sure I don’t need to describe my frustration! So I wasted another morning on the phone with the idiot manager at our local Best Buy. After securing even more discounts on our end – a very small positive in an otherwise sucky situation – they realized their mistake and are apparently delivering a floor-model dryer sometime today. I’m not holding my breath. At this point I’ve been without a dryer for over two weeks and the laundry is truly piling up. Luckily I have some awesome neighbors who have let me dry a few loads at their houses – thanks guys!
Later in the week I decided to call Phil & Teds, the manufacturer of our double stroller. When we were in Europe we lost the screw to one of the rear wheel guards and I haven’t been able to find a replacement that will work. A few weeks ago Jenn told me that she called Phil & Teds and they were incredibly helpful, so I thought I would give it a try. Sure enough, my call went right through without having to punch in any additional numbers or wait in line. I explained that we had lost the screw (totally our fault) and I was looking for a replacement. Without hesitating, the woman asked for my address and said “okay I’m shipping you two new rear wheel guards with screws – is there anything else I can help you with?” Not only did I get brand new wheel guards, but she Fedexed them overnight and I didn’t have to pay a cent! Phil & Teds makes some awesome products, and they’ve made me a customer for life… or for as long as I have young kids
We’ve been spending a lot of time at the pool this summer, mainly because Roman is totally obsessed with swimming. Harper likes swimming but doesn’t love it, but Roman flat out loves it. He doesn’t walk, so he has figured out how to use his hands to walk across the baby pool and he cranes his neck to keep his face out of the water. It is so funny to watch, and pretty amazing that he figured it out! He also likes to take a kickboard and push it back and forth across the baby pool while walking. Sometimes the board goes too fast and he falls face-first into the pool, but he doesn’t care. He just gets right back up and keeps going!
Harper asks to go to the pool all the time, but has the most fun when Ellie is there. We’ve had a few dinner dates at the pool with Ellie and Annie, and Harper is beside herself with excitement when her BFF swims with her! I guess her brother and his cool moves just aren’t as interesting…
We spent Roman’s birthday at the pool (last Sunday) and I was able to get a few photos of Roman doing his tricks:
Harper can do it too:
We celebrated Roman’s FIRST birthday this past weekend and Portman and I both agreed that this was by far the fastest year of our lives. We’ve been through so much this year and it’s all starting to settle down, finally. Roman has grown from a very difficult baby to the most easy-going and just plain EASY baby. Six months ago he was still waking up at least twice at night and often ended up sleeping in our bed. Now he sleeps at least 12 hours at night and takes two 2-hour naps during the day. He is one of those kids who you just lay down in his bed and he rolls over and goes to sleep – there’s really nothing to it. He rarely fusses unless he’s hungry or his sister is sitting on him, and he’s just SO chilled out and happy!
We had Roman’s one year checkup today and he is once again at the top of the growth curve. He is in the 92nd percentile for height, the 82nd for weight and the 90th for head size. He is a BIG baby! He weighs about 25 and a half pounds, which is just over a pound less than Harper (who incidentally is at the very low end of the growth curve for girls). He loves to eat and is very good at using a fork – not a surprise considering how much practice he gets with it.
Roman is still not officially walking, but he is taking a ton of steps on his own. Just in the past two days he has started taking 6-8 steps at a time and tries all the time to walk. He will walk from wall to furniture, furniture to toy, etc. but if he’s in a big hurry he usually just resorts to crawling. He doesn’t have much to say. His only official word is “uh-oh",” but he has said “mama” and “dada” before, just not consistently. The doctor wasn’t too concerned and after talking to friends who have boys, I’m convinced that boys just do things a little bit later than girls.
We are constantly amazed and excited about the relationship that Roman and Harper have. They honestly love each other and get along so well. Harper is incredibly sweet with him and is very concerned when he gets upset about something. She shares with him without being asked and is always looking out for him. The other day I gave her a graham cracker, and without being asked she broke it in half and gave half to Roman. I love it! Roman just idolizes his big sister. He follows her everywhere and always wants to do what she is doing. I can tell that Harper gets annoyed sometimes, especially when she is trying to do something like a puzzle and he crawls on top of it, but overall she is so good to her brother.
We were so happy to celebrate Roman’s birthday with Ya Ya, Abie and Aunt Annie. Roman is obsessed with balls, so we got him a little basketball toy and a few play balls. If you ask him to say “ball,” he says “OHHHH!” like he’s in the New Jersey mob. It’s hysterical. He didn’t care much for the gifts, but was very interested in the food. Roman and Harper had birthday dinner together at their little picnic table. They are seriously so cute together!
Enjoying some birthday cake. After his he reached over and finished Harper’s:
I’m pretty sure if he could talk he would say “eeew gross!”:
Yesterday after the kids’ nap we decided to try something new, so we rolled out some big sheets of paper on the patio and finger and foot painted. Harper LOVED it and got very creative, using all of her body to paint some lovely art. Roman was more interested in the sandbox, but still managed to get paint on his head.
Going in for a little taste:
Roman has started eating with a fork and shocked us all by doing it correctly after just a day of trying. He’s not even a year old yet, but what can I say, the boy likes to eat.
We eat outside almost every night, and we’ve adopted a new friend. Harper calls him “Chippy the Chipmunk.” Actually, any chipmunk is called “Chippy,” I’m pretty sure she thinks there is only one in the world and he happens to show up in different places. He likes to eat with us because the kids are very good at sharing their dinner.
I put an ad on craigslist last week to sell our washer & dryer for $500. They sold for the asking price and are getting picked up on Wednesday, but I haven’t taken the ad down yet. I got this exact email a few minutes ago:
would you trade for a set of classical CDs? I have about 120 of them.
Seriously!? What kind of moron wants 120 classical CDs, and moreover, who thinks they are worth $500?! Amazing.
Harper: “Once upon a time.”
Daddy: “Once upon a time?”
Harper: “Yeah, once upon a time there was a traffic light on a tall bridge.”
Almost every morning at breakfast she asks us the following:
“So, what we can do?”
We usually have to make up something “exciting” to do, that is secretly not exciting like: “I have a great idea! Let’s go on a walk… to Giant!” Then we walk there, get a gallon of milk and whatever else we need, and walk home. She’s usually satisfied, but I think I’m going to have to get more creative.
This morning at breakfast:
Harper: “What’s that?”
Mommy: “You tell me. What is it?”
Harper: “It’s coffee.”
Mommy: “That’s right, it’s coffee.”
Harper: “We should buy me some coffee too! No, we should just buy me some chocolate milk. At Starbucks!”
One of the parks near our house has a little bridge over a creek. I took the kids there a few days ago and when I pushed the stroller over the bridge, Harper immediately said (from We’re Going on a Bear Hunt):
“Ooh, a river! A deep, cold river! We can’t go over it, we can’t go under it…”
Harper, for some unknown reason, is completely obsessed with Dora the Explorer. She gets so excited when she sees any Dora paraphernalia in the store, and when I took her to pick out her “big girl pants,” the only ones she would consider were the Dora’s. Here’s the confusing part: until a few days ago, she had never seen a single episode!
So, I saw it on the TV programming list and decided to DVR an episode for her to watch. She was very excited about it, but hasn’t asked to watch it again, opting instead for reruns of The Little Einsteins. The one thing she gleaned from her single viewing of Dora was “backpack.” Apparently Dora’s backpack is a feature in the show, and ever since Harper watched it she will fill up her backpacks with random, unrelated things, sing “backpack, backpack!” and wear it around the house for a while. Here’s what I found in one of her backpacks this morning:
This morning Portman took the kids to get bagels and didn’t realize until they had ordered and were at the register that he forgot his wallet. In the car on the way home:
Portman: “Sorry Roman, sorry Harper. I forgot my money.”
Harper: “That’s okay, Daddy. I forgot my money too.”
Watching the Little Einsteins episode “Farmer Annie:"
Annie: “Music by Johann Sebastian Bach!”
Harper: (runs and finds her Sebastian toy from The Little Mermaid) “Look! Two ‘Bastians! Dis one is ‘Bastian Bach too!”
On Saturday morning Ellie and company came over to borrow our wagon. Harper and I met them at their car and Ellie immediately asked: “Harper, are you coming to America’s Birthday?!” So we did.
We took Harper to see the fireworks with Ellie, Bern and Andy. Roman and Annie opted to sleep since the show didn’t start until 9:30. The girls should have been exhausted, but they had enough energy to wrestle and dance while we waited:
My camera battery died after the dancing, so Bern, send me your pics!
On Sunday we met Uncle Dave, Aunt Jenn, Katelyn, Megan and Abby in Old Town for some duck-feeding and bubble-blowing. Harper and Katelyn were not happy when we had to pry them apart to go home. Roman, on the other hand, was quite happy to sleep in the car.
Roman before the park:
Roman after the park:
Portman is good at rastling:
How do you get 5 kids and too much stuff into 2 double strollers? Like this: