h.e.h. & baby brother
watch us grow

This is what summer looks like to me today, so beautiful!

Tonight at dinner she couldn’t get enough of the steak off the grill. She told us that she was going to tell Auntie Mandy and Uncle James when they ask that her favorite food is steak. Then she turned around in her seat and said “thanks mama for this beef.” Who taught her that?

I’ll admit, the volume of pictures dwindled as the days went by: Monday I took 147 pictures, for today I took 45. It was nice to see Friday arrive and Matt was happy when he woke up which is always nice. There is a trend in Matt’s interests: things that you can push. He gets so excited to see a broom and takes it right out of my hand.

Matt was also happy to see Ben & Ayden show up this morning. Matt was already dressed when they arrived so he spent the hour playing with them while I dealt with Haley. Once again, Ben took over and loved on Matt like he always does!

We made Orange rolls as a tiny celebration on Friday and then took off to drop Ben at school.

As the week was a bit crazy, I messed up yesterday’s blog and today was when sister woke up with the puffy eye and we made a stop at Target on the way home. Then it was playing and reading of books until lunch time. One thing that didn’t get captured this week is Matt’s love of the van. Whenever we get home I get him out of his seat, stand him on the garage floor and he instantly turns around to climb back in the van and do some exploring. At first it was all about the gum, he would find it and start chewing a piece with the paper on. Now that it’s hidden he wants to “drive” or just sit and relax in the passengers seat. I often get in and find the wipers going or flasher lights on only to remember it was probably Matt.

After his normal nap today I tried to sneak into a dark room and snap a picture of him sleeping but neither of them turned out before he woke up to the noise and flash – sorry Matt! We got up and headed right to the DeBoers to meet Ben off the bus. Then in a moment of pure insanity I decided to take 4 kids to the grocery store at 4:30 on a Friday afternoon. It was a bit chaotic to say the least and for some reason people kept commenting to me about “having my hands full!” Matt did a number on his shirt with the free chocolate chip cookie that kept him entertained while I shopped.

Aunt Jen and Oma came to take the big kids to the golden arches for dinner and play time while Matt and I were on our own. It was amazing how quiet the van ride home was! Matt pointed right at the stroller when we got in and I agreed, perfect time for a nice quiet walk. We ate dinner with just dad and then played until bed…the end of a very long week with lots of errands, trips, playing and family. A small glimpse into the life of Matt.

We got going early again today. Hoping this trend of 6am wake up will take a break this weekend. There are 2 things Matt is very excited about in the morning: Brushing his hair which he does when I am brushing mine and helping us brush our teeth. He loves to hold onto the end of our electric toothbrushes and feel the vibration. He even asks us with his “please” to brush our teeth. (a pink paci is what you get when you have an older sister…we don’t usually take that one out in public with us)

As soon as dad took off and we had some breakfast it was into the tub for both of the kids. Lately Matt has decided he doesn’t like a bath. He doesn’t care about toys anymore and wants to get out asap.
He makes it very difficult to wash him off and puddles are all over the floor when he is done; not a good time.

Our plans got changed again today when H woke up with a few bug bites that she seemed to be allergic to. One on her temple was swollen and puffy near her eye. So, we all piled in the van again and headed off to take Ben to school. It makes me happy to see 4 happy kids in the morning!

Next we stopped at Target to get some medication for her. I know it was early but I let the kids enjoy their free cookie anyway. I think the bakery lady looked at me funny since it was only 10am. Oh well…then Ayden asked if we could “look” at the toys. I couldn’t get a picture of Matt trying on his Captain America mask but the big kids were more than happy to oblige.
Another unplanned event came up next, so we headed over to my mom’s again. The pool wasn’t working and she wanted me to check on it AND the sprinklers weren’t coming on for the newly planted garden. The garden especially was concerning so we went to play and check it out. Matt took a little nap on the way there and I learned a lesson (again) – don’t open the door to the van if you want a picture of the baby sleeping, he’ll wake up and he might not be happy about it.

We played on the “restaurant” for a while and checked the pool then headed inside for me to figure out the sprinkler system. We left with the plants watered and the pool filter running.
The afternoon for Matt was uneventful and fairly typical. Lunch, play a bit, bottle, nap. He woke up a bit early and did some more playing, found his favorite room open and did some exploring.
The boy LOVES electronics, where could he get that from??

After we picked up Ben we actually went over to mom’s again and I finished planting in the garden and helped mow the yard. Matt went along with Auntie Jen to pick up the pizzas for dinner and they took this last picture. We ate, we played more and it was again…time to head home for bed! Another day over.

Before Wednesday even started I was determined to stay at home as much as possible and have a low key day aka less driving. I was reminded once again that I have a higher power in my life and He has plans for my day that I am not aware of! “The LORD knows all human plans; he knows that they are futile.” Psalms 94:11. I am happy though that I can see God at work in the regular everyday things!

On to Matt! He woke up early again today but it allowed for some play time with Justin that they both enjoyed. There are days that Justin leaves seeing none of us in an upright position so a bit of kid time is always appreciated before work.

We did the normal morning routine (at least for this week) got dressed and then played with the cousins before heading out for school drop offs. Today was Haley’s last day of preschool and she got dropped first then we took Ben.

I decided to give Ayden a treat and we headed to CUB for a doughnut. I cannot express to you how much he loves doughnuts – don’t tell him but I’m thinking of giving him a doughnut coupon book for his birthday next month! Matt was pretty fond of the chocolate ones with sprinkles himself.

We had some time to kill before H’s closing program at school and stopped at a park. In just the last week Matt has gotten much better at walking on uncertain terrain and going up the steps, coming down the slide. They had a good time together, spending about 30 seconds at each thing before moving on, typical boys.

We jumped around and sang at Haley’s school then said good bye to her teachers. When my sister had arrived in the AM she had brought 2 pieces of news with her from my mom’s house: 1. Sam has a huge tick over his eye and mom thinks you should look into it. 2. There is a big coyote in the neighborhood so watch out if you take the kids over or let the dogs out while you are there. Well, we weren’t headed over during the day but I was getting concerned for Sam’s tick. So, we came home from school for 2 hours, Matt took a quick nap and we were off again to pick Sam up and head to the vet.

Matt is a typical 1 yr. old in situations like the vet to it takes at least 50% of my attention watching him, keeping him entertained on the side and away from things he shouldn’t be into. We got through it and started to make our way across town again to get Ben off the bus. We stopped for a slushie at McDonalds and finally got our new library card opened up – let me tell you, Matt & the library don’t mix yet – therefore no pictures were taken. We played at the DeBoers for a few minutes, got Ben and then it was off to Oma’s house. Tonight was a quick dinner night and time to plant the garden! Matt was interested in following me around and shovels. He didn’t help too much but what can you expect from a 1 yr old?

When we got home he was still awake, unlike his sister, and followed me out to check the mail. There was an abrupt stop when he got to the driveway from the garage and realized he was walking without shoes or socks. This was really the first time since he started walking and the weather was nice enough that he walked outside bare foot. He seemed to enjoy it, going up and down the driveway quite a few times. Proud of himself! He couldn’t quite stay awake for a bath, so off to bed he went.

Tuesday: Matt slept in a bit, about 7:30 and he was up. It depends on the morning but today he made enough noise to wake up his sister and they played together in my room while I got ready before my sister dropped off the boys for the day.

In this picture, he had just dropped his paci on purpose and was saying “uh-oh” over and over. Luckily this isn’t a game we play too often! I think he’s just proud of his words that people understand! A well used crib! It housed his two cousins before him so it’s had a lot of boy love over the last 9 years!
After they arrived, we spent some time playing with cousins and Ben has become a big help with the camera too! Here is one of his shots:

We all got going and headed out to take Ben to school, it starts at 9:15. Ben always seems to be smiling in the AM when we are on our way there and then fairly exhausted when we see him at 4pm off the bus. I wondered today how Matt will deal with school, if he will like it or hate it?

Then the 4 of us, M, H, Ayden and myself stopped at Lowe’s to get flowers for H’s teachers on Wed, it’s her last day of preschool! I love the carts at Lowe’s, besides that they hold 2 kids, they are entertaining with the stearing wheels. I jerk the cart around and blame it on H’s bad driving, they love it and she just laughs. I pretend that Matt is the great driver, hopeful I guess!

We came home and the kids did some playing. I let Matt watch his one and only favorite show: Discovery toys – Baby signs. He had some graham crackers and enjoyed the show. I did some cleaning and had left the front closet open, Matt found it open and at first I thought he was going to spew all the art supplies out but instead he just kept pointing to the vacuum. He loves that thing! He likes to touch it (when it’s not on) and then he wants me to use it. So we did. And whenever I would turn it off to move something he would get upset and point to it again until I turned it back on. Silly boy!

Then we headed over to my mom’s house for a change of venue. We had lunch right away when we got there then went out to play in the sunshine! Enjoying every drop we can when we have it! He loved climbing on the “restaurant” (as H & Ayden call it) and pushing his toy around.

I had to get the big kids to come inside when it was nap time to trick Matt into thinking we were all coming in. This is an outdoor type of boy. He went down well in the pack-n-play and slept for 2 hours. After Oma got home from school she took over with the cousins and were on our own again so we headed home to clean and make dinner. Matt was sure that he needed a post-nap snack when we got home and knows right where to head.

Right now one of his favorite snacks is saltine crackers…a bit strange but easy for him to carry around. They leave so many crumbs though!
He is also really great at doing the “please” baby sign. We are still working on thank you but he knows when to use please and uses it often! It’s so fun to see his little brain working and thinking!

With a full belly he was in a much better mood and very curious about his sleeping sister on the couch! This makes me laugh, assuming that this is just the tip of the iceburg for the two of them.

We made dinner and ate when dad got home, thus ending my story with Matt for the day. He stayed home with dad while I took H to Ayden’s preschool concert and he was alseep when we got home! Another busy day in our little man’s life!

I did a week in Haley’s life about a year an a half ago and it’s been on my mind to do the same for Matt. So now that he is totally mobile and having a lot more fun, communicating more etc, I thought I’d try and capture what his life is like these days. I want to remember what he likes, what he doesn’t like and what he does most of the day!
We are experiencing an un-normal week in that we are watching both of my nephews this week, Ayden all day and Ben before and after school, but that makes it even more fun for Matt.
Monday started out early at 6am so the documentation was lacking! Matt came to “play” in our room so he didn’t wake up sister. He sat with me on the bed waiting for Dad to get out of the shower. I heard the shower turn off and said “Here comes daddy!” He started to crawl on the bed toward the bathroom door and I said “hold on one sec.” He turned to me, started to scrunch up his face and then cry his “I’m-real-sad” cry. Not too happy that I was holding him back from being with his dad! He has been very attached to Dad lately, being upset when he leaves for work and SO excited when he gets home.
The norm happened next, diaper change, getting dressed and working on breakfast. He is an egg lover, has 2 scrambled eggs almost every morning, usually with some fruit or prunes. The last couple days he’s been pointing and asking for Kiwi and eating at least one a day!

At 8, Aunt Jen arrived to drop off the boys and Matt was so excited to see them. He really has a place in his heart for his cousin Ben. I think it’s pretty mutual. They play well together and Ben is so good with him!

We got in some early morning play time and then it was off to deliver our friends:
9:00 – Sister to preschool
9:12 – Ben to 3rd grade
9:30 – Ayden to his last of preschool

We were actually a few minutes early to Ayden’s school and so he spent some time making Matt laugh, something he prides himself in! All it takes is a fake sneeze and this is what you get:

As almost always, Matt and I spend some quality time shopping when H is at school. Getting the grocery shopping and anything else done with only one child is much easier than with 2 (or 3 or 4 these days!) Matt loves to get his sample cookie and today he wanted to try on some sunglasses, something he’s been interested in lately.
I would say his most favorite thing about the grocery store is looking and pointing at all the balloons.

As sometimes happens, that last couple minutes in the van before picking up H at 11:30 you can catch Matt napping. On a day like today when we started at 6am, there was no question.

Matt always plays with the train table outside H’s classroom and has even taken some of the trains home with out me knowing until much too late. (Of course they were returned on the next school day!) And he is always excited to see his big sister come out of her room, mainly because this means the door is open and he could maybe sneak in the classroom to play just for a second before I grab him.

It was time to head home and eat some lunch and down for a nap. Matt is a pretty regular napper, he only takes one but it’s a good one. From about 1pm to 4pm when I wake him up. Today was going to be very short since we had to pick up Ayden at 2:30 and then be at the DeBoer’s to get Ben off the bus at 4pm. He slept for 1.5 hours and was not happy with me when I woke him up over an hour early. (Thank you H for helping me with this picture, great job!)

We spent time at a neighbors play set, “mowed” the lawn with a kids push mower – another new interest of Matt’s, flew a kite and had a snack while we waited for Ben to get off the bus.

Now, I’ll admit that my steam started to wane at about 5pm as we pulled in the driveway. Some neighbor girls were out drawing with chalk so Matt got in the stroller, H on her scooter and we headed over for a bit. As their family headed inside to start getting dinner ready, I got out my cell phone and called J to make plans to meet at Subway down the street. Nice weather + TIRED = out to eat. Matt always gets the bring along PB&J when we head out these days and he enjoyed it again tonight. Was not a fan of dad’s Jalapeño & Cheddar chips.
We headed home, got his bottle ready and it was time for bed. It’s standard, bottle while rocking and then to bed with his green blankie. And as children like to prove over and over again, when you think you know how things will go, you are wrong. He went down like he could sleep for 12 hours. About 30 min. into it, he was up and playing, wanting to read books. Sometimes we just have to sit in our bed until we feel like sleeping! And so it was how Monday ended in the life of 15 mo. old Matt.