Thursday, November 29, 2007

Big Boi

So I know that, according to the stats, Alex is supposedly bigger than most kids his age. But it is hard to assess how big he really is when I am the only one around him most days. I mean, he's smaller than me, but that's not really saying much.

Alex and I ran some errands today, including one to Hobby Lobby. Now, a trip to Hobby Lobby used to be a no brainer, but since Alex has come along, it has become a logistical nightmare of sorts. For some reason, their shopping carts are teeny tiny, despite the fact that they sell a plethora of large items - furniture, easels, oversized mirrors, etc. You'd think they'd want to accommodate the people buying high dollar items instead of making those people strap the high dollar items to their backs and haul them around the store because they don't fit into the itty bitty shopping carts. Every time I go in I want to ask them if they have carts for grownups because I can only seem to find the kiddie ones.

So it kind of goes without saying that the baby carrier I would normally put Alex in does not conveniently fit into the shopping cart, especially if I go to Hobby Lobby with the intention of put anything other than the baby carrier into it. Now what? I mean, Alex can't quite sit up long enough on his own to hang out in the front of the cart without his carrier. I think he could sit okay if I really kept an eye (and hand) on him, but the second I'd turn away to check a price or something, I fear he'd slump over and flop out onto the floor. And as much as we would benefit from the winnings of an Evans v. Hobby Lobby lawsuit, it'd probably cost us just as much to fix Alex's busted noggin.

I thought about using the stroller, but then we're back to square one - A's got a place to sit, but where the heck do you put the stuff? It was time to stop messin' around. So I went for it. Strapped the Chicco baby carrier to my chest, grabbed a cart, and got to shoppin'. I felt a little ridiculous, but hey, whaddyagonnado? I put some toys in the kiddie seat to keep him occupied, although he spent most of the time with his little hands on the handle of the cart. He seemed to be alright with the situation, although he wasn't facing me so I can't know for sure. What I do know is that his dadgum legs are so long that he kicked me in the thighs every time I took a step.

Speaking of Alex's legs being long, it's time I actually got to the point of this post.

We finally made it through the entire store - Alex's eyes red with fatigue, my quads thoroughly bruised - and stepped into line behind a nice lady and her infant son. The boy had been sitting in the front of the cart and she had taken him out to play with him while they were waiting, so I knew he was old enough to sit up. I asked how old he was and she replied, "He's seven months". She then reciprocated the question, to which I replied, "four and a half months". Her eyes grew big and she stared at me incredulously. She looked at Alex, sized up her boy, then looked back at Alex. Yeah, I guess they looked to be close to the same size. The two babies had a conversation while the mom and I talked - turns out her baby was about two pounds heavier than Alex, but you could've fooled her!

It's not the first time a stranger has commented on his size - "His daddy must be tall" is a comment I hear often (to which I am always tempted to reply, "I don't know"). I just moved him up to size 3 diapers, which are no longer "Swaddlers". Nope. They are "Cruisers". My baby is a Cruiser!! I don't know why it took me so long to realize that he was peeing all over everything because his diaper was too small. Duh. For some reason I thought size 2's went to 18 pounds - and I knew he wasn't that big - but when I read the package again, it said that 3's went from 16-20 pounds. Duh. Maybe I was in denial...

But what really sealed the deal was when I put him in his new pj's tonight. He has outgrown most of his 3-6 sleepers, so I bought a bunch of new ones without feet hoping he could get a little more wear out of them. The sizing chart on the package suggested I get the 12 month sleepers for babies that are 16-20 pounds, since Alex is around 16 lbs. these days. Those'll work, I figured, and he'll even be able to grow into them. Not so! I put those jammies on expecting him to be swimming around, but there was hardly a pucker to be found. He's wearing Cruisers!! 12 month jammies fit him like a glove! Oy vay, my baby's growing up...

Monday, November 26, 2007

Smile! You're on Candid Camera

Aahhh, the long-awaited pics from Saturday's photoshoot. Most of them speak for themselves so I won't take the time to narrate them, but there are a few that may be better received with a short explanation. Take these first few, for example... Normally I only post "good" pictures, meaning those pics where nobody looks fat or has a goofy smile, where no one's clothes are caddy-whampus (sp?) and no one has spinach in their teeth. However, I also think that some of the best pictures are candid ones, and boy, do we have some doozies. Rachel often takes test pictures to check her lighting and such, and the result of the spontaneous pics are these incredibly candid shots of our family. Rachel is absent because she is behind the camera, and the one you may not recognize is my brother's adorable girlfriend, Allegra. There's a chance my family will kill me for posting them, but it's worth it.

Seriously, folks, you couldn't stage pics like that if you wanted to. I think they look like movie stills. I particularly love Alex's expression in the last one. All of that practice led to a great family portrait. As you can see, my dad's gigantic Bravia flat screen is officially part of the family now.

Alex loves his B's (Grandma and Grandpa B, that is).

Us and him:

More us and him:

Timothy and I have recently determined that we have the happiest baby ever. Or the hammiest. Same difference. Ugghhh, it doesn't get any better than this...

Murphy and his Bubba:

Can this kid pose or what? I knew making him watch all those America's Next Top Model marathons would pay off...

Here is his "serious" model face. Note the manly clenched jaw...

Sick of Alex yet? So sorry. I can't help myself...

I gotta give Timothy props for these next pics. Grammy gave Alex this outfit and we wanted to make sure to get pictures before he outgrows it. Aunt Rach and I had some errands to run and we weren't sure if we'd have time to shoot him, so Timothy took matters into his own hands.

The outfit was adorable, but it was heavily starched and Alex found the crunchy texture to be kind of uncomfortable. He tried to take it off himself and almost succeeded.

Although we were all very impressed with Timothy's skills as a photog, we decided to let Aunt Rach give it a whirl.

This one has no explanation. I just thought it was funny...

Can you see why we are going to have a hard time deciding which picture to use for our Christmas card? I generally prefer surprises and wouldn't normally offer a sneak peek, but I will say that I think the following pics are in the running to be "the chosen one":

Believe it or not, these are just a fraction of the pictures that were taken. If you still haven't had enough of Alex, the collection in its entirety can be viewed on my flickr site. Enjoy!

Stinky Pooh-Pooh, Throwed Rolls, Papa's B-day

We left my parents' house at the crack o' dawn Sunday morning so we could meet Tim's family for lunch at Lambert's outside of Springfield, MO. It was Papa's b-day, and his birthday wish was to have lunch with his grandson.

Alex slept hard for the first three hours of the trip and finally woke up to eat a little something. We made a quick bathroom stop and got back on the road, however, Tim and I were the only ones who actually used the bathroom. Alex decided to wait until we were on the road do I put this...make a seriously stinky pooh-pooh in his pants. He was basically asleep when it happened - a pretty impressive feat if you ask me - so instead of waking him up and throwing us off schedule, we decided to ride it out. Gross, I know. But he didn't seem to mind. In fact, I'm the only one who suffered, having to endure almost two hours of incredibly noxious fumes wafting up from his carseat. Ughhh, I gag at the thought...

It was freezing cold and raining by the time we got to Lambert's, and of course, I had to execute a stinky pooh-pooh diaper change in the backseat of the car, in the freezing rain, with no coat on, before we could go inside.

Grammy, Papa, Auntie L, cousin Ashley, and both Mamaws were anxiously awaiting, Alex's arrival. Lambert's was packed, as usual, so everyone had plenty of time (an hour and a half, to be exact) to play with Alex before we got to our table.

Everyone in the restaurant loved his hat and he drew lots of adoring looks while we were waiting in line. I think he's starting to get used to being oohed and aahed over. We try to remind him to stay grounded so he doesn't get a big head, but he sure does lavish the attention. "I'm still Alex from the block," he assures us.

After all the gorging I had done during our two day Thanksgiving fiesta, I had completely sworn off food and had planned not to eat again until Christmas. I knew that just wasn't a realistic goal, so I compromised and had the low-cal fried catfish platter with mashed potatoes and fat-free gravy. Papa tempted Alex with some fried okra, but he had more will power than I and refused the offer. In fact, he forwent food altogether, and instead, opted for a liquid lunch. He had delicious bottle of formula and even managed to feed himself.

We handed Alex around the table like a "pass around" - blackeye peas, fried taters, macaroni and tomatoes, Alex...but he didn't seem to mind. He even caught a tossed roll, with Grammy's help.

Papa was happy that he got his birthday wish and Alex was happy to spend time with his Papa.