So on Wednesday, Benjamin finished up all his hard work on tooth number 5. Its the top right one, I think. I attempted a photo, which was tricky, since you can't really see it from straight on, so you have to hang the boy upside down, and then convince him to open his mouth up. He was nice enough to humor me though. You can only see it in one of the shots, but I thought his front teeth were so impressive in the second photo that I had to inlcude it too.
So, remember when Benjamin was just a little tiny guy, and had to take his bath lying down in a little tiny baby bath tub? A while ago, I don't know, a couple months ago maybe, I had this realization that he was way to big for the tiny tub, and I had to let him graduate to the big boy bath. I will dig up a tiny tub comparison photo to add later, but can't locate one right now. Anyway, look how big and sitty-uppy he is!! And how standy, because of course one of the things he wants to do in the bath, as with everywhere else in life, is to stand, and walk or run laps. These are very censored g-rated pictures, so he won't be embarrassed when he grows up, except look how cute his little tush is! In the past he has been kinda ok with baths, but not very enthusiastic, and then the other night in the spirit of the new and demanding big boy Benjamin, he threw a fit when I tried to take him out of the tub before he was ready. It was pretty funny actually. Next on the home improvement list is his bathroom upstairs, so that he can collect a whole fleet of rubber ducks, and get to have his bath in the same room that his towel lives in.
Well, I wish we had the before pictures, which must be around here somewhere, because the after pictures are just not that impressive without them. Imagine this room as dirty, drafty, yucky and unfinished looking. It used to all look the way the floor still looks, if you can kinda see the floor in one photo. Anyway, still need to touch up ceiling paint, paint trim, finish one tricky dry wall corner, and paint the floor. But most of the work is done - ie wiring, insulating, drywall, window replacement, door replacement, trim installation, shelf building, painting, hooks hanging. Now we have more organized recycle and garbage, and dog food and cleaning products from under the sink out of the reach of curious little fingers. And it is much warmer and more insulatey. And it was the last portion of the house that really looked super unfinished (well, not inlcuding basement and yard), so it feels really good to have it all improved. Yay!
This was a very accomplishful weekend of many home improvement projects. I wish I had before and after shots, because the progress was so huge. Sadly, I only have after shots, so you cannot tell the great triumph that is each project.
On the mudporch, the old mudporch had: old drafty glass windows, uninsulated beadboard and exterior siding walls, no light fixture, lots of weird angles, exposed wiring that didn't go anywhere, big ugly door with cracked window. The new and improved mudporch features lights! shelving! exterior lighting! insulation! drywall! energy efficient windows! paint that is not circa 1964! fire extinguisher! hooks for stuff! new and improved (but still old) door! shelf baby! ok, he is not a permanent fixture. And I do have touch up paint to do, a little more mudding and taping of one awkward corner, and the floor to paint, but it is almost mostly done. And its organizational prettyness is awesome! (mudporch pictures coming tomorrow. Too tired to upload right now.)
On the backyard, the old back wall was: ivy covered, full of much mysterious debris, full of old stumps, crumbling dirt, and not dog containing. The fabulous new back wall is terraced! rock walled! landscaped! dog containing! mostly free of mysterious debris! I think it may be the nicest part of the yard now. It sort of feels like when you paint one room, and then the rest of the house looks grungy and needs redoing. This is so nice that I want to attack the rest of the yard next. We planted the top tier, and it looked so nice I went to Home Depot to get another round of plants for the lower tier. Of course, while I was there it started downpouring, but I am very determined, so we planted in the rain. I'm sure it was great for the plants, and it wasn't cold out, so it was fine. Anyway, overall much prettier, and hopefully should prevent the hound from visiting the kitchens and garage sales of various unsuspecting neighbors. Benjamin immediately saw it as a climbing challenge. He triumped and summited very quickly. All the summit photo is missing is an ice ax.
Next weekend will be all about the squirrel proofing. Oh, and a wedding, a picnic, and a camping trip. But also squirrel proofing. They must be prevented from living in the attic again this year! If they lived, say, on the other side of the house, I might let them share with us, but they don't. They live directly above and next to my bed, and it sounds like at any minute an angry squirrel is going to burst through the wall, and most likely start a fight with the cat that is always trying to take over my pillow, and I will be clawed to death in the ensuing melee. It is not a comforting way to fall asleep. So, next weekend: squirrel proofing!
(On a side note, the finished wall pictures were taken in the rain, and at dusk. It was getting pretty dark out. It is only through the fabulous technology of Nikon that these are visible at all. And you would think it was in the middle of the day. Its crazy.)
Wednesday was Benjamin's 9 month check up, which was the greatest doctor's appointment yet, if you ask him. Dr. Brown said he was cute about a million times, and best of all NO SHOTS. It was good all around! So, vital stats are a little fuzzy, since this was a few days ago, but the basics are that Jammy is 28" tall, and 18lbs 4 oz (I think). He is a little over 50th percentile for height, and a little under for weight. He was very determined to spend the whole appointment playing in the biohazard trash can, and very mad that I didn't want him to. He could only be distracted by sitting on the edge of the sink and playing in the water. Dr. Brown was funny, she commented again on his deep voice, and his uber blond nordic-yness - she thinks we should call him Sven, or maybe Anders. Neither of which were on the name list, and do not rate high even on my nick name list. She did publish an edit that we must be offering him solid foods 3 times a day, and also must get to work on the child proofing. Yikes. Not ready for mobility yet.
So, I'm 9 months old now, practically a grown up, and I have had enough of being an easy going laid back baby. No more! Now, I know what I want, and I want it right now! I have learned a lot of neat tricks to let everyone know what I want. Here are a list of things that are on my like list:
*the dogs water dish
*walking everywhere all the time
*playing in the potted plant dirt
*walking up the stairs
*playing the piano
*playing the guitar
*playing the bass
*playing with drum sticks
Here are the things that I DO NOT LIKE:
*taking a nap. Hello. Naps are for babies.
*getting out of the bath tub before I am ready.
*getting into my car seat. Why can't I drive?
*waiting for my bottle. Waiting for anything I want, actually.
*staying in bed past 6:00 am. I am ready to GO in the morning!
*wearing pants. Well, only sometimes.
*having my diaper changed. It takes time out of my training regimen. I need to be going as fast as possible, all the time!
I am super uber lazy non-poster.... So you should read Miss Doxie instead! She is out of retirement, and the link to her blog has been happily reinstated over there on the lower right hand side of the page. More Jammy posting later this week. Maybe even tonight! You never know. Also, Happy Birthday Hillary! I called many times yesterday, but never actually spoke to you. I assume this was because you were busy having so much fun. Hopefully will talk to you tonight!
As if the finger-meets-soda can-death-hole (thanks Chris! I think that is the perfect description) incident wasn't tramuatic enough for this month, I have a new Jammy injury to report. Benjamin usually wakes up around 6 or 6:30, and Loren brings him to me in bed to have his breakfast. When he was just a tiny baby, sometimes he would very charmingly fall asleep with me and we would get to go back to sleep and snuggle for awhile. No mas. Except this morning, (after a lot of awakeness in the night) he did it again. And he didn't wake up and didn't wake up, so I finally got out of bed, and got to get ready all by myself, which is a big excitement for me. I left him to snooze in bed, which is what I would do when he was just a little guy. So Marnie the wonder nanny got here, and I told her he was still asleep, up in our bed. Fast forward to 6:00pm. I called Loren to check in with him, and apparently (I know you could all see this coming) Benjamin fell out of bed and onto the floor. Marnie had the monitor on and heard a big thump! and went running to check, and there he was, on the floor. Poor guy had no idea what had happened. He was apparently more surprised than hurt, no big lumps or bumps or gashes, but I sure felt awful about it. Poor little guy. This photo is from the crib in the hotel in Missoula. From now on he only gets to sleep in beds with walls this high.
Welcome Emmett! Hillary had her baby last week on Wednesday, and I have been totally remiss in not posting since then. Emmett Cramer Ogg (ECO!!) was born in the afternoonish Seattle time, weighing in at 7 pounds and 6 or 7 ounces. (so my memory is not that great. Whatever.) He was 3 weeks early, which was a big surprise, but is the perfect size, and healthy and all that, so that was a happy surprise. No one really enjoys those last 3 weeks of pregnancy anyway. He has all kinds of nice dark hair, and is just beautiful. He has a very funny little squwaky cry, I can't even describe it. Not a regular baby cry. Almost like a cat. I think he may be trying to speak to the dachsunds. Judith, Madelyn, Benjamin and I went on a road trip to see the young laddie, taking off for Missoula on Friday night, and heading back on Monday morning. It was tons o' fun, and I'm really glad we went. Madelyn did an awesome job of entertaining Benito in the car, and leaving on Friday night really helped with the whole sleeping in the car thing. We stayed at the hotel across the park from Hillary and Mickey's, which was great. It was a block from their house, they had a pool we got to swim in, and we got to sit on hotel beds and eat ice cream and watch the Olympics, which was super fun. (Judith and I could so be synchronized divers.) Hillary and Mickey were still in the sort of dazed and confused parent stage, pretty tired, but doing great. Judith did a photo shoot of Emmett and the family, so check her blog for fabulous photos soon (Auntie Cookie link). Emmett is so tiny and cuddly, it is very hard to imagine that the great lurchy beast that is Jammeroo was ever that small. I know, total cliche. But it is so true. I wish we had a better photo showing the boys size differential, but really, Benjamin is so squirmy and flaily, and Emmett is so teeny, that I was kinda too nervous to put them next to each other in a photo. But we do have this one, which I love, because it so captures the moment. Hillary is engrossed in beautiful tiny infant, and Benjamin is blurry and trying to escape. Who would have ever thought we would have made it from high school to this? The mind boggles.
So, we had a little first aid incident at the campout.The picture does not really capture the bloody massacre that this really was. So, as you might know, Benjamin is a very grabby little guy. Lightening fast grabbing reflexes, and very strong grip. And he is also very interested in whatever I am doing. So, if I am on the phone, he is trying to wrestle it away from me. If I am having something he can’t eat - spicy thai food, ice cream etc. – he will lunge for it. And don’t ask me how he can tell it is something he can’t have. He just knows. If I were to eat say, green beans, he would totally ignore me. But he might try to steal the empty fork, so he could try to swallow that. So anyway, I was holding him on my lap, in my most outrageously fabulous camping chair, simultaneously with drinking a diet coke. And I did let him touch the can, which was nice and cold, which is very interesting to touch. But I somehow was not fast enough, and he got his little fingers into the… I don’t even know what you call it. The little hole on top of the can that you drink out of. Is there a good word for that which I just can’t think of? Or is there not a word. Its not a spout. The mouth of the can? Anyway, you know the part I mean. The part with the razor sharp edges. And being the clever mom that I am, I then tried to remove his hand from the sharp edges, which is what resulted in a tiny finger slice. Even though it was a tiny slice, to a tiny finger, it was a gusher, and produced copious amounts of drippy blood. Which he alternately wiped and dripped a) on his face, b) on my hands, and c) on his Gonzaga onesie. We eventually found a first aid kit, toweled him off, and got a band aid on. This picture was in the very short span of time when the band aid actually stayed on his little finger. As soon as I let go of his hand, he proceeded to stick his finger in his mouth and chew the band aid off. So of course then I was worried that not only would he bleed to death because the band aid wouldn’t stay on, but that he would also choke on it and die before he could finish bleeding. I ended up holding his hand in a towel until he stopped bleeding and he was fine within a couple of minutes. So he survived his first injury. I am switching to drinking only those funny little glass bottles of limonata from here on out. Because, really, who am I kidding, I was looking for an excuse to do that anyway.
Benjamin and his Granpa Lee found this kids bike just as we were about to leave the campout. Benjamin thought it was a pretty darn cool discovery. He looks so big to me in these pictures, like he might actually be able to ride the darn thing. Tempting to just let him tip over to make sure he can't.
One of the big highlights of the campout for me was introducing Benjamin to the river. This is the Cowlitz, which starts on a glacier on Mt. Ranier. BRRRR! At first he was more impressed with the rocks, which he wanted to eat, but then he did seem to notice the water. (Maybe it was when I took his shoes and socks off and shoved his tiny feet in. Its hard not to notice that.) At first he picked his feet up and curled his little toes in, trying to get out of the water, but then he decided it was more important to walk, and walked in the river and on the rocks of the river bed (holding my fingers, of course.) His balance and walking is getting a lot better.
Benjamin got his first successful shoulder ride at the campout this weekend. It was hilarious. Apparently this has been tried before, and he was too floppy for it to work. Now that he is a big strong balancey guy, its much better. He thought it was the funniest thing ever. He just kept laughing. I couldn't stop taking pictures, because he was just so happy and entertained by the whole thing. Was it funny to be so tall? Funny to be above dad's head? Who knows. But clearly it was very funny. They were having so much fun that I wanted to try, which did not go so well. Loren cleverly had a hat on, to protect his head from the killer death grip claws. Not so much for me. The ride lasted for about 30 seconds of extreme hair pulling, long enough for me to smile for the camera and then start shrieking get him off me. The ride with dad did also provide some good opportunity for Benbino to brush up on his plant identification skills. He studies leaves very, well, studiously.