Saturday, September 22, 2007

Good Use of Chair

We have a round chair that we just keep moving from room to room. Usually it is occupied by Xander, but now we put Mark in it to play. He seems to really like it.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Brrrr, Joneses and Other News

It's getting cold here; feels very much like autumn, except the trees are still mostly green. We were promised early fall colors this year because of the draught. That's not a good news though since the few leaves that have turned color are yellow-brown and shrivelled.
Time to dress Mark up in warm outfits. And he looks so cute in all of them! But he hates getting dressed and even tries to bite us. And then keeping socks and shoes on is a constant challenge. We pretty much gave up on shoes after the first try. But socks are a must now that it's getting cold. So he'll just have to get used to them (or we'll have to fix some kind of suspenders system).

Last weekend was full of things to do. First we went to the Greek festival and Mark earned his first $6. How come? Well, we arrived before the place was open, but there was already a small line of old folks outside the doors. So they started oohing and aahing over Mark and then literally showered us with coupons good for free admission tickets ($3 each). Too bad we couldn't score any free food this way and ended up spending $20 for a plate of appetizers and a plate of chicken. We couldn't stay too long though 'cause Mark was getting bored. So we walked around our most excellent flea-market and bought some furniture for the living room - an Asian-looking cabinet - very pretty.

Then on Sunday we went to the Tour of Homes hosted by our Home Owners Association. Did I tell you we have like the best HOA?! Membership is completely voluntary, costs only $30/year, nobody tells you what to do, and they arrange annual block parties, tours of homes and such. This tour of homes is quite an event, really; it was even featured in the local Raleigh News&Observer. There were people from all over the city visiting. This year they had 8 homes on the tour ranging from a custom-built architectural marvel that won tons of design awards to some DIY budget renovations. Apart from satisfying our curiousity and checking up on the Joneses, we got to meet a lot of neighbours and had a very good time.
As you can see, we now brush Mark's teeth, both of them. He doesn't like it very much though. What he does like doing with his teeth is biting. When I dress him, something that he hates, by the way, he tries to bite my hand. Oh, and by the way, he started making a sign for "milk"!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Teething Again?

Last couple of days Mark has been pretty cranky. He chews on everything and drools too. Yesterday he had a crying fit and wouldn't want to go to bed. We tried everything - feeding, bathing, playing, rocking, but nothing helped; not until we put some Orajel on his top gum. So maybe he is teething? Maybe he will soon have one or two more little sharp pearly-white thingies to bite with?

But even with possible teething and all the crankiness, he is such a sweet baby. He's 7 months old now and gets more and more entertaining. He's mastering a pincer grasp now (that's when babies learn to pick up very small objects, such as raisings, with their thumbs and forefingers, instead of raking them in with palms of their hands). He is also learning to pick up all sorts of objects - square, round, smooth, soft. One of his favorites is our cordless phone.

His new obsession is to move from sitting position to the stomach. After sitting up for a long while, he makes a funny squeal and lunges forward. Maybe he's trying to figure out how to crawl?

We still take him to the pool once in a while (indoors, now that the season is over). He still really likes it. And we're still learning sign language. He understands several signs, but actively uses only "pick me up" one. And he's growing - weighting over 17lbs now - and getting big and heavy.

Other than that, not much is going on around here - we work, Chris studies (almost done!), I cook (now - Italian), Xander acts crazy, and we all watch Netflix movies a couple of nights a week.

Monday, September 03, 2007

Labor Day

The summer is pretty much over. Can you believe this? Dunno about you, but I feel cheated! Not like I had big plans for this summer, but somehow even the little ones that I made didn't happen... And now the outdoor pool where we take Mark is closing. Today was their last day. How sad... On the bright side, it's cooling off a bit here and we're resuming our stroller walks now. And as for the pool, we'll try to go to a year-round pool, even though it's a bit further away.

The weekend hasn't been much fun, really. Chris's dad was here for 2 days. So he met Mark for the first time. We mostly stayed home, partly because of the heat. I can't even think of anything we did on Saturday. On Sunday we went to the flea market at the State Fairgrounds. It was fun (even though I didn't get to spend much time there). There's so much old junky-looking furniture there! I'm obsessing with furnishing the living room as cheaply as possible. So I figure if I buy some cheap stuff there, have Chris paint it, it'll look great :) Then in the afternoon we went to the downtown Raleigh. Predictably, it was dead! There were a few people here and there, but only 2 cafes were open. So sad - there are tons of places there that look like fun - Italian, BBQ, Chinese, a couple of funky coffee shops, etc. But they are all closed on Sundays... Apart from being dead on weekends, downtown Raleigh is nice. And once all the construction is finished, it's supposed to be really a cool place. Maybe they'll even have a couple of restaurants and shops open on Sundays?
We also went to the pool a couple of times. It was great! The water was much colder, but Mark didn't mind at all. Actually, I've never seen him quite so happy swimming around in the big pool. And as usual, he attracted so much attention. Except people think that he's a little girl (because, they say, he's got such pretty eyes and is so cute). He's going through some growth spurt or something this week - eats a lot, sleeps a lot, and is cranky. And his clothes are getting tight on him! He sits very well by himself, reaches for everything, rolls over when I try to get him dressed. Now he started to roll from the tummy to his back, but he needs more practice. Also, he tries to feed himself solid foods - he's pretty adamant about holding a spoon when I feed him. Naturally, feeding time is 10 times longer now and we have a huge mess on our hands at the end. But it's so much fun!