Birthday Fun

On Zachary’s birthday we were blessed to be invited to the Hands on Children’s Museum in Olympia. If you remember we went with our MOPs group in February. For more see Zachary: 9 months This time we went with one of our friends, her son, nephew, and niece.  During lunch in the café the kids sang happy birthday to Zach. He seemed confused that everyone knew the song except him, but he enjoyed it.

Zach loved “snug harbor”: throwing balls and carrying stuffed animals around.

He saw the bigger kids climb the tree jungle gym and decided to do the same. Now, we don’t have stairs at our house, but that didn’t seem to matter.

Zach crawled up the landings and pulled himself to standing to look out the top. Then without hesitation he walked right over to the slide and sat down. Fortunately I was at the top of the gym. So down the slide he went, for the first time by himself.

At the bottom he was grinning widely, very pleased with himself. My friend Rebecca asked if he wanted to do it again. Immediately he stood up, reach for her hand, and with her help walked back over to the landing to do it all over again. It was a good day.

On Saturday we celebrated Zach’s first birthday with a Very Hungry Caterpillar front yard Picnic. It was beautiful, sunny, and we were excited for friends and family to eat, play and have fun!

We started with a picnic of: PBnJs or cold cut sandwiches, chips, goldfish crackers, and a few fruits and snacks featured in the storybook. The red gingham tables were decorated with clear plastic pails filled with rocks and pictures of food from the story sticking up out of the plastic grass.

After lunch it was play time!  Several large picnic quilts each had a basket full of activities: bubbles, bouncy balls, hungry caterpillar color pages and crayons, sidewalk chalk, and more.

Zach had also just been given a water/sand table. I filled it with plastic caterpillars and butterflies hidden among plastic Easter grass. The kids used plastic cups and bowls to hunt for the bugs. It was quite the hit.

After some outdoor fun it was time for cake.  Zach’s smash cake was so cute with a big hungry caterpillar colorful candy dots and of course a candle with the number 1. To go with, everyone else enjoyed matching cupcakes featuring dot sprinkles and white chocolate green leaves with a hole through them, just like in the book.

Zachary was hesitant but with encouragement from mom and dad he soon dug in. Not long after his highchair, body, and the balloons tied to the back of his highchair, were covered in cake.

Zach was definitely more interested in tissue paper then his presents. But more than that, of all of the celebration he enjoyed balloons most of all.

For weeks after his birthday he played with the mylar balloons -I’d say favorite toy of the month.

Thank you everyone for a great first birthday and party. Zach had a great day full of fun, family, and friends.

Zachary: 11 months

Zachary is now 11 months old!

Well this has been a month of many many first and new experiences.

Zach had a great first Easter. He enjoyed dancing to worship songs at church and of course his first Egg hunt. He knew how to pick up the eggs and put them down in the basket and did so mostly on his own.

But he enjoyed opening his Easter basket which had shiny plastic eggs with yogurt bites in them even more.

Zachary met his great grandmother the next weekend and went on a short road trip with her, my mom, and myself to my sister-in-law’s baby shower. He did well traveling and spent the weekend with family receiving plenty of attention.

At the baby shower he wanted so badly to play with the presents, gift bags, and discovered he likes balloons.

We got back on Sunday, repacked, then Luke dropped us off at the airport the next morning. Zach went on his first plane ride from Portland to LA. He explored where his mom grew up and downtown LA. He then went on another road trip to San Diego where we met up with Luke.

There we explored old town and the Gaslamp district, the zoo, and toured the USS Midway all before another plane ride home. If this seems like a quick sum-up, it is, more on this adventure and plenty of pictures to come.

Alongside this adventurous month, Zach has been learning new skills.

Zach can stand mostly on his own, but he doesn’t know that yet. He wants at least one, preferable both hands of an adult to guide him when he walks around. He loves to push items around including boxes and chairs and will cruise all over the house.

Zachary has also started pointing using his whole hand loose at the wrist to point while saying “ooh”. Recently, he has been pointing at items such as the quilt in his bedroom, celling fans, lamps and other lights.

If we ask, Zach can give us an item, emphasis on can, he will give us his hands when they need to be washed too. And he is finally saying “mama”. Which of course makes me very happy.

Zachary is testing boundaries and knows the word “no”. He likes to go right back to “no” places like the fireplace or the few exposed cords in the living room. When we guide him to a new location, he will occasionally throw a tantrum, yes I have a mini-toddler already. In turn, Zach will sometimes say “nanana” or “nonono” to food he doesn’t want, or when he doesn’t want to do something. So, we know he knows what we are saying.

We try to go out outside at least a few minutes every sunny day now so Zach can enjoy his swing. Zach went to his first park play date this last week where he mainly enjoyed the swings, but did explore the jungle gym, with a lot of help.

I can’t believe Zachary is almost one!  I only have one monthly update left! Not to worry I am still planning share big changes with Zach. But I am also looking forward to writing about food, festivals, house projects and much more.

As well as there are other things that have been happening alongside Zach’s first year that I am probably due to catch you up on too.

Happy Birthday Kira!

Kira our hound/terrier mix puppy is a year old! I say puppy because she may now have a mostly adult body but she still has the energy of a puppy.

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We don’t know her actual day of birth, but we estimated based on paperwork and guessed she was born around the first week of July.

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To make it easy to remember we decided to give her the birthday of 4th of July. When I told my family this, my grandmother said she is a firecracker puppy! My mom agreed saying she is definitely a firecracker.

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Kira at 8-10 weeks old

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Kira a few weeks before her birthday

Kira is very curious and full of spunk. Mostly obedient now, she still will test the boundaries. We are now working on teaching her to settle, to calm down and sit when she sees a cat, person, etc. outside and wants to hunt or to guard us. We are also hoping to teach her roll over very soon.

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For her birthday treat she got homemade whipped cream with blueberries and a homemade banana, oatmeal, and peanut butter treat. I know a little spoiled.

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trying very hard to be obedient as I take a picture

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She also has some new toys coming in the mail. We are trying out a few new toy brands for our super chewer, more on that to come.