Monday, September 21, 2015

Stake Activity Day

The Stake Primary Presidency (including me) put on a Stake Activity Day for girls age 8-11. It was a LOT of work, but I think it turned out well! We had more girls show up than expected (47!!!), but luckily we had enough food for everyone.

Can we fit 75 bag lunches in my fridge? Yes we can!

 The girls decorating letters in the workshop I ran.

My friend Ashley (Tytan's mom) graciously volunteered to teach the girls a dance. I think that was everyone's favorite part!

 Cute girls (2 are from my ward) singing a song together for the talent portion.

Westchester Stake Primary Presidency. Laura, Pamela, Me, and Liz.

I am so grateful the opportunity I get to serve the Primaries in my stake. My favorite part is interacting with the kids!

Watkins Glen Hiking Trip

Jeff had another Friday off of work, so we decided to head upstate and do a hike that we've been dying to do. It is at Watkins Glen State Park. It was a rather short hike, but the views were amazing.

 (That's me in the pink on the bridge)

Our hotel had a pool, so of course we went swimming!

He swam the whole length of the pool!

Axel was so excited about sleeping in a big bed that it took forever for him to fall asleep!

 The next morning we checked out of the hotel and headed to Robert H. Treman State Park for a longer hike. It was grueling! The first 2.5 miles were pretty much straight up! It was a loop, so then it was downhill after that. 

 Lucifer Falls in the background. That is the focal point of the hike.

 Our consolation at the end of the hike was a swimming area! The water was super freezing so we only lasted about 30 minutes, despite how hot we were while hiking.

Then we changed into dry clothes and headed home!

Two hard things about the trip:
  1. I was hacking up a lung, especially at night. We pretty much didn't sleep. The day after we got back, I went to urgent care to finally get some antibiotics.
  2. We had Axel wear a diaper during the hikes, so he wouldn't have an accident in the carrier. He managed to keep those diapers dry the WHOLE TIME, but as soon as we put him in undies, he had 2 accidents within 20 feet of a toilet. What the heck kid? He was even dry for the 4 hour drive back! He would hold it until we got to a potty.
It was a super fun trip and I'm glad we did it, even though I was pretty sick.

Aquarium in Camden, NJ

Jeff had a "Summer Friday" off of work, so we went to the Adventure Aquarium in Camden, NJ. It is right across the water from Philadephia, and takes around 2 hours to drive each way. It was really cool! The highlight was definitely the hippos. We got a great spot to watch their feeding, so their heads kept popping up right by Axel! Fun Fact: Hippos can't actually swim. They use their legs to push up from the bottom of the water.

 The Shark Overpass was super crowded and full of screaming children and loudly talking parents
(and it echoes), so we high-tailed it out of there as fast as possible.

This was a funny moment. I set Axel up on the ledge, and didn't realize that the window was WAY far in, and Axel fell forward and I tried to catch him. He was fine, but I definitely had that irrational moment of "My baby is falling into the tank!" One minute later, it happened to another mom and toddler! The glass was super deceptive!

This was our first big outing with him wearing underwear, and his first time successfully using public toilets. It went great! This was day 4 of potty-training. He didn't have an accident until we stopped for frozen yogurt at our favorite place in Tuckahoe, and he peed in the playhouse.... Ah, the joys of parenthood!

Big Boy

I seriously can't believe how big my little baby is. He got a big boy bed, then he threw away his binkie (and didn't have any problems sleeping after), and got potty trained, all in the space of a couple of months!

Throwing away the binkies. We made a bit deal out of it. We went to his favorite restaurant (Five Guys), then threw it out in the garbage, then he got to pick a new toy.

 This was his version of a "quiet toy." That's one way to wake up.

Potty training. Here is how it went down:
Day 1: decided after his nap that he wanted to put underwear on. 2 successes, 2 accidents.
Day 2: ALL accidents. Ugh.
Days 3: no accidents.
Day 4: 1 accident.
Day 5: no accidents.
After that it has been sporadic. Most days no accidents, but sometimes a little squirt makes it out. No "gushes" anymore, thank goodness! You don't realize how much his bladder can hold until you are looking at it pool on the floor!

 Playing baseball before the drive-in movie started. We saw "Shaun the Sheep". So good!

 He was "pretending to be Mommy."

 He climbed into his highchair by himself because he was hungry for breakfast! 

 Helping water the garden in his skivvies.

 Drawing with Daddy.

 He wanted to wear the beanie at Costco because his "head wouldn't get wet." (It was raining)

 This is how he does Nursery. Kind of a loner when Tytan isn't there.

 Trying on Star Wars stuff at Target.

 Daddy's work has a Tardis!

He learned this in Nursery. He is obsessed with singing about a baby in the song. I guess that must be what they do at Nursery?

New parlor trick.

Ode to Olaf. We went to an outdoor screening of Frozen with his girl friends, so he has been talking about Olaf a lot.

Potty training post-script: I should add that I TOTALLY bribed Axel. He got an m&m for pee and a sucker for poop in the potty. Worked like a charm. He stopped asking for the treats after a week or so. Now (4 weeks later) I have moved on to bribing him with a starburst for a dry diaper during naps and overnight.