Thursday, January 28, 2010

Colin in the Snow.

Snow is a somewhat rare occurrence in NYC, we have a big storm every couple of years, but for the most part I would say we get less than 10 days of snowfall a year and generally there isn't much accumulation. When I looked out the window this morning while getting Colin's breakfast together and saw snow falling my reaction us "ugh!" but when Colin saw it from the window he said "ooo" and then started signing snow (to be fair, the signs for snow and rain are similar and his are indistinguishable so he could have been signing rain but still...) So I asked him if he wanted to go see the snow and he (of course) said yes. Colin's first snow experience this year was right after a the big storm we had just before Christmas. With all the Christmas posts I was putting up the snow adventure post got sidelined. Colin was not a big fan of snow that day. Here are some pictures from that morning.

In full snow gear. He is thinking this could be fun

 Making an attempt to walk on his own...

...and just like that the fun ended. Face plant in the snow was pretty much a deal breaker.

"Get me outa here!"

Back to today... after he finished eating we got dressed and bundled up and I took him outside. Here are the pictures from this morning:

Not too sure what to think of this yet...

"Where is it coming from?"

Footprints in the snow.

He wasn't a fan of snow on his boots. He also wasn't a fan of his gloves where there was so much to explore. Since it wasn't too cold, and we weren't staying out long, I didn't push it.

Testing it out

Fun Stuff!

"Wait a minute this is cold!!"

Colin discovers snow balls! I lined them up on the bench and he just tossed and tossed.

I think he has decided to like snow now! 

Monday, January 25, 2010

"Little" Katie's got pipes! *updated*

After literally 10 days and many levels of issues with this video, I have successfully converted and uploaded it. The thumbnail picture didn't come through but I'm not too concerned. If you click it, it will play!  Enjoy.

Everything is working now. Since you aren't likely tot click through to the vimeo site here is the description of the video:
Katie singing in her high schools version of American Idol. This is her second year competing (first as a high school-er) and this was the second round of competition this year. Katie blew away the competition. It was instantly clear to everyone in the room that she was the winner. We are so proud.

Katie sings "Don't Stop Believing" v2 from Rebecca Berry on Vimeo.

and here is another video of Colin watching Katie sing:

Colin watching Katie from Rebecca Berry on Vimeo.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Colin is 18 months old!

Unfortunately in the days surrounding the 18 month anniversary of Colin's birth, he was a very sick little boy. He had a bad cold and an ear infection and was in no state to be photographed.This post is very late. He is feeling better now but still has a runny nose and slight cough, particularly if he gets running around.  We have no height and weight information this month, they havn't been checking it at the drs office lately. When I went to get his second flu shot the doctor was out of flu vaccines so we went ahead and gave him MMR. Thankfully that is behind us and he had absolutely no immediate reaction to it. No fever or anything, and this was a good two weeks before he got sick.
Sleeping: Nothing really to report. Being sick fortunately didn't affect his sleeping much. Naps were interrupted from coughing but he only gave us real trouble one night after he was mostly better. He whined and cried on and off for about ten minutes (we went in and checked on him and gave him Motrin but tried to wait him out and thankfully he didn't push too hard so we didn't have to pick him up. He is back on a regular schedule and had even been taking longer naps (2hrs) than usual.

  • Blankets. All of a sudden Colin is a fan of blankets. He went from totally hating them to loving them in about a week. My mom gave him a soft pink blanket to cover him during our drive back home and he must have realized their utility in keeping warm. At first he only liked that blanket but now he will use any blanket
  • His puppies. Colin continues to snuggle his puppies at bedtime and they have been really useful when traveling to make him more comfortable in new surroundings.
  • Monkeys: For Christmas, Colin got two monkey stuffed animals, a couple of pairs of monkey pj's, two sets of Monkey sheets and two monkey outfits,*updated to add* and monkey gloves. His love affair with monkeys is stronger than ever. If you ask him what he wants to wear he ALWAYS says "oo ooo ahh ahh bun-key" of course I can't always deliver a monkey outfit but I try to accommodate him when I can.
  • His new Christmas gifts: Colin got a bunch of new toys for Christmas and he loves all of them! Coloring books and easel, music table, a few trucks, rhythm scarves, mega blocks, they are all scattered around the living room during the day.
  • Favorite foods: Blueberries, corn, oatmeal, mac&cheese, crackers, cheese, mango, dried cranberries and rasins
  • Repeating things: be it words, activities, videos, or what not, Colin is now in the toddler repetition stage. 
  • His hat: Well I guess it is Lukas hat, but Colin loves to wear it and will often refuse to take it off in stores. I worry he will get too hot but figure he will eventually let me know if he is uncomfortable.
  • Starfish: Colin got a sticker book for Christmas and instantly wanted to move all the starfish stickers to one page. He gets very excited when they come on his zoo train video.

  • Having his nose wiped. What kid enjoys this?! Thankfully this is his first real head cold & ear infection so we have been pretty lucky.
  • The high chair: Colin continues to have a love hate relationship with the high chair.  He would prefer to sit in a regular chair but it isn't developmentally ready for that, even a booster seat in our kitchen chairs wouldn't be safe because they have a very open back.
  • The vacuum: It is now possible to vacuum with him around but he still isn't a fan.
  • Meat potatoes and eggs: He ate some oven bbq chicken the other night so we will try that again, and I got him to eat some potato soup with his favorite crackers in it so we are trying to "build bridges" to these problem foods but it is slow going.

New things:
  • Potty awareness: We aren't really potty "training" in the fullest sense yet but Colin got a potty for Christmas and we have started having him sit on it. I try to have him sit every time I change his diaper but he doesn't always want to and it isn't always convenient but in the last few days he has been sitting for longer and longer periods of time.  An unexpected outcome of this is that we have run out of clean socks faster than normal. Since he hasn't peed on the potty yet, he will sometimes get nervous and stand up and walk away only to pee on this socks 30 seconds after getting up.  No one said this would be easy and I'm trying not to push it too much.  So far his only reward for sitting on the potty is being allowed to wash his hands. I'm not ready to start giving him candy on any regular basis yet so I won't be doing this type of reward for a while. We also allow him to rub lotion on his bare legs to keep him busy while he sits, and of course we have been reading him books as well.
  • Three word sentences: More and more now Colin will put three words together and actually speak in sentences. Saying things like "I got Kix" or "no more mangoes" and occasionally "more music please" 
  • Colin now says his own name! Sounds like "Tah-yin". He really likes to identify people in pictures and has started to recognize himself as a young baby, maybe photos of himself just under a year. 
  • Throwing things: Colin could throw things before but now he will throw just about anything if we let him. We try to limit throwing to his small balls but it is difficult for him to understand these categories still. He also likes to roll things between his legs as he is in "downward facing dog" position and watch them roll away from himself. 
  • Sean also taught him to sing "All night and day" in response to us singing "Who do you love?" This is a song Sean and I have sung back and forth but I'm not really sure if it is a real song. I always thought it was but now I can't seem to find any evidence of it. I'm pretty sure I didn't make it up, but the "all night and day" part might be a misinterpretation or a combination of songs. 

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

New Discount on Dropps.

I just wanted to pass along another new discount on laundry dropps. For the next three days you can get 30% off your bulk order (and free shipping) when you use coupon code: ThirtyOff. This brings the price down to 21cents a load.

This seems so trivial right now in light of everything going on in Haiti, but I'm passing it along none the less.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Seeing my money used in Haiti.

Sean was a little surprised when I said I was sending money to Joy in Hope, when he felt other organizations might be better equipped to help.  I however, being more familiar with the spirit of the organization knew this was where my money was needed.

Seeing these pictures and knowing I have helped a small way to feed people who needed it was all the confirmation I needed. The Mangines and the Pyes are doing an amazing job, one they didn't ever imagine they would have to do. Gwenn even contributed to a CNN article that allowed a people back in the states to see pictures of their loved ones and know they were alive.  

If you haven't yet sent money to Haiti and want to, Joy in Hope is a good choice. Here is the link, choose "Immediate Needs".  None of the major aid organizations have made it to Jacmel yet, all the aid that is coming to these people is being organized through Joy in Hope.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Mangines in Haiti are Okay.

**Updated Below***
As you may or may not know, some friends of mine are currently living in Haiti. Thankfully they are all unharmed but with the aftershocks continuing they are not out of harms way yet. They don't live far from Port Au Prince (maybe 25ish miles as the crow flies) and I'm sure things are going to get worse for them before they get better. All hospitals in Port Au Prince have been destroyed or abandoned, things are very very bad. Please pray for them and all of Haiti, this is really a worst case scenario, a very highly populated area with structures that are not built to sustain earthquakes of this magnitude. There are lots of good organizations that are trying to help the people of Haiti. If you are able, please consider donating. Here is a partial list all of whom are already on the ground in Haiti:
Some high tech ways to help:
  • Text "Yele" to 501501 to automatically donate $5 to the Yele Haiti Earthquake Fund. Musician Wyclef Jean, who is from Haiti, has established Yele Haiti to help his home country.
  • Text "HAITI" to 90999 and a donation of $10 will be given automatically to the Red Cross to help with relief efforts, charged to your cell phone bill.

If I get more information I will let you know.
This is from the organization that Nick and Gwenn work with/for in Haiti.

Many have asked how can they send funds to help. Here is the info from Rick:
Earthquake Relief - Donate at
and select "Immediate Needs" (or mail checks to JIH - Earthquake, 2731 NC Hwy 55 #251, Cary, NC 27519) to help provide much needed food and supplies to those affected by today's earthquake.

This is a link to pictures they (not the Mangines but their 'sister family' the Pye's) have taken in Jacmel.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Lastly: The wedding!

I mentioned that Sean and I attended the wedding of another good friend of ours from our College years, Erica to her high school sweetheart reunited Chaz. The wedding was in Fulton and the reception was at the Arrowhead lodge near Syracuse. Being a New Years Eve wedding it was likely going to be a late night so we booked a room in Syracuse. This way we wouldn't have to brave the roads back to my parents house on NYE (I'm not sure which is worse the potential for weather hazards or drunk drivers!)  We were in good company, since most of our friends also left their kiddos behind in various cities to attend the wedding. We had a great time although I am fully willing to admit that I did not sleep much at all. I told my mom to text me if Colin woke up overnight (I like to have information.) But being NYE's I actually got a few well wishing text messages throughout the night that caused me to wake up with quite the adrenaline rush (assuming it would be about Colin) and of course then couldn't fall back to sleep quickly. (According to my personal text-iquette these messages are totally acceptable I just obviously couldn't turn my phone off or down to ignore them.) We hit the ground running at 7am and were back with our perfectly content Colin by 7:30. The moral of the story: I worry too much!!

Here are a few of the pictures I took. None of which are of us! Hopefully someone else took one and will pass it along...

My favorite shot of the newlyweds

 Elaine and Brandon (the only couple not to leave their progeny behind since s/he is in utero)

Cori and Rick, they left two kiddos 2ish and 5 months I think.

 Sarah and Miguel, they had to leave baby Syler (4months old) for two whole days!! I hear everyone did very well.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Christmas Rewind Part 3 (plus bonus flasbacks)

While in Syracuse, we were able to visit with some great friends. Here are the pictures from those visits.
First up: High School Friends. Some of my closest girlfriends came over to visit and get the kids all together for the first time.  Sam & Ben and Colin are 4 months apart, Colin and Annabelle (our only 2gen girl so far) are 1 yr apart and Carter is 3months behind her.

Back Row left to right: Nicole, Julie with Annabelle, Kristeen with Carter, Me with Colin,
Front: Erin with Ben and Sam

The kids exchanged some gifts, here Annabananabelle enjoys a taste of "Peek-a-Who?" while the big boys look on.

Carter slept through much of the party. What a baby!

Colin and Ben attempt to mend fences over some Pirates Booty. When asked if Ben wanted to see Colin he said "No, no, Colin push!" He was a little wary but there were no further incidents!

Colin the Enforcer and Long-Suffering Sam

Ben helps feed Annabelle.  Such a sweet moment.

 Carter opens those baby blues.

Read to me Mama!

The next day we celebrated Christmas with some of our favorite Buffalonians.  Amy was accommodating enough to drive out to my sisters house  (about a 2.25 hr drive one way) so we could spend the day together. As an added bonus Kristeen, Brain and Carter joined us later that evening. (Backstory: Kristeen, Brian, Amy Sean and I all went to college together at Canisius College in Buffalo.) Here are the pictures from that day:

Thomas chatting with Sean while Otis the dog solicits attention.

Thomas and I

Lukas, Samantha and Colin. If you were at my baby shower in Syr You may remember the friendship between Sammie and Lukas at my baby shower.

Flashback #1 Here they are 18 months ago...Aww! These two peas in a pod picked up right where they left off and enjoyed each others company once again.

Opening some gifts with Uncle Seany

 Colin gets some cool trains!!

Sammie shares some secrets with Colin.

We got Samantha a trunk full of princess dress-up clothes. She dug right in! She almost makes me want a little girl.

When Carter arrived, all Lukas wanted to do was 'hold the baby' and Sammie was equally intrigued.

Here are the boys right before we went 'home' to Grandma and Grandpa's.

Flashback #2: This picture:

reminds me of this one taken 18 months earlier:

I'm not sure why toddlers are so interested in baby hair but it seems to be a trend.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Christmas Rewind Part 2

'Those who know' will probably realize I'm going to go out of order chronologically but I'm going to group the next two Christmas Rewind posts into 'Family' and "Friends' this one being the former.
Picking up where we left off. Sean Colin and I came home late in the evening of the 26th and we did Christmas at our house on the morning of the 27th.

Colin opens one of his gifts from Mommy and Daddy

Its a car! Zoom zoom.

Colin burying himself in presents(new monkey outfit and monkey crib sheet) and wrapping 'paper' (I used cloth again this year)

Reading Colin his new book "I love you"

Then the very next day Colin and I flew to Syracuse

Colin is checking out the airplane, for a few moments I thought we got lucky with an empty row... the last person on the plane was seated at the window. There was a spare middle seat, but Colin feel asleep on my lap a soon as the plane started moving and didn't wake up until after we had landed. I love how well he travels (and no he did not complain about ear pain.)

Sean joined us Tuesday evening after he got out of work. We did things this way so Colin would have an extra night to get used to Grandma's house before his first overnight without Mommy and Daddy.

Playing with trains with Grandpa.

Colin colors with Aunt Sisty.

Having a snack, using a spoon like cousin Lukas. At home Colin will take a few bites by himself but then gets bored. Here he ate the whole cup by himself (or nearly so.)
On New Years Day, Sean and I came home early and we celebrated Christmas with the Jones'.

Lukas says "Thanks for the presents Colin"

Colin tests out his new easel from Grandma and Grandpa.

Later that night the really silliness started with Kristy's desire to put on her wedding dress. Since all of our dresses are stored there we went ahead and put them all on.  Mine was supposed to be professionally sealed, but if a bunch of tissue paper in a garbage bag with a twist tie (inside a coffin shaped box) counts as a professional seal I won't be paying for that again!!  The dress still zipped but it was certainly tighter than it was that day.

Finally I will leave you with what I hope becomes a Berry family tradition.  I read somewhere about a family that took a picture every New Years Day. Something about that struck a cord with me so we did it.
Here we are New Years Day 2010!