Thursday, February 24, 2011

10 Months Old

Two Things Thursday

Sorry for the gaps in posts... I've had a project that I got totally engulfed in over the past two weeks.  So, from the file marked Totally Random I present this picture of Josef, the usher and Cooper's part-time babysitter at church.  Wednesday night he met us with a coffee mug from Petra!  Seems Josef received it as a gift when the Schowalters were here some time ago.  You know when you see your toys in a stranger's garage sale and go, "Wait a minute... what's that doing here?"  Yeah... Two worlds colliding...

When you're on vacation in another city or state... or continent, do you ever wonder about the churches there?  In Jordan, there were always tour groups coming through the Holy Land.  Usually, their schedule didn't allow them time to interact with the local church.  Last Sunday, Pastor Mirabella and his wife from Rome were in town to celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary.  It was great to have them in service with us.  If you're in Rome, their church is 5 minutes walk from St. Peter's on Via Cola di Rienzo.

Monday, February 21, 2011

SUZI: Quickly Thankful

As much as possible, Scott and I say grace before we eat.  (Sometimes this consists of a quick “Thank you, Jesus” as we shove some food item in our mouth while we chase after Cooper.)  I’ve realized the small beauty in this simple act.  There’s something about stopping and taking a moment to be thankful for what you have…that you even have food to eat…that you have a choice of food to eat…that you have a pantry full of food.  There’s grace that comes when you acknowledge there’s more to a meal than just food to consume.  It is acknowledging that another day of your needs have been met and that someone had to work to prepare the food for you to eat.  It is a brief moment of thanksgiving that makes a meal fuller and richer.

Monday, February 14, 2011

And then... he did!

So, Saturday night I had this crazy dream in which Cooper was standing in our apt and then took off running.  And there was pandemonium as we grabbed cameras trying to capture him taking his first steps.  I kept saying, "Hurry! He might not do it again!"  (Cooper has a tendency to perform a task (rolling over, etc) and then not do it again for months.)

Yesterday, after we all got settled back home from service, Suzi mentioned that Cooper might have taken a couple of "stumbly" steps during church.  But one can never be sure since he was "baby dancing" (you know, that bobbing thing they do) and then lurched forward like a tree falling in the forest.  Does a tree walk in the forest if there's no one to document it?  Exactly.  There needs to be proof.

A few minutes later, she's yelling for me to "get in here quick" 'cause Cooper had done it again!  A few more trots around the coffee table and the kid did it for sure.  From my mom's recollection, I stood at 9 months and walked at 10 months.  As it should be, my li'l guy is already outperforming his pops.

So, maybe there was a bit of jumping about to celebrate... and I may have even gotten a li'l misty about those hesitant steps into the future.  Of course, then we broke out the camera to get something on tape... and while it wasn't as amazing as the first time, it's still fun stuff to watch.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

You Can't Make This Up

I'd like to say this picture was staged.  That we dressed Cooper in leg warmers one time to celebrate the life and death of the 80s.  But alas, it is not so.  My son regularly wears leg warmers.

And it's not a fashion statement.  Like post-it notes or Michael's Glove, they came from necessity.  See, Cooper won't wear socks.  Period.  And when he sleeps, the legs of his PJs get all hiked up around his knees.  By morning, his legs are freezing!  So, Suz cut the feet out of some socks and, whamo, my son's a Flashdance wannabee.  

Maybe we'll just say he's preparing for his striker position on the pitch.  Yeah.  That's it.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

SUZI: I am SUPERMOM... wait... hold that.

Today I needed to clean the bathroom floor.  It was long overdue.  It needed more than just a quick gloss over with the mop (which I can do fairly easily with Cooper on my hip).  There were several spots and some corners that needed a good scrubbing.  I was debating about waiting until Cooper took his nap, but I had other things I needed to do then.  I decided I would keep him in the bathroom with me and figure out some sort of a diversion so I could get the job done.

I got the bucket out and filled it just under half way.  As soon as I set it down, Cooper tootled over and immediately put his hands in the warm water (there was no cleaning detergents in the water – I try not to use any when Cooper is around).  “Perfect!” I thought.  “Cooper can sweetly play in the water while I clean the floor.”  I even rolled up his sleeves so they wouldn’t get wet.

OK. Does anyone already sense a flaw in my thinking at that moment?  It’s like in a movie when the music kicks in and everybody watching knows what’s getting ready to happen…everyone, that is, except for the naively innocent person in the movie who's not listening to the soundtrack.  

Yeah…let’s just say that the music kicked in.
I was on my hands and knees scrubbing away for approximately 30 seconds when the most beautiful thought crossed my mind. ”Here I am, cleaning with my son.  He’s learning to play by himself.  I’m getting my work done.  We’re in here together, and I’ve come up with a creative way to keep him distracted.”  

At that moment I was supermom.  Approximately 2 seconds later, my supermom status was on shaky ground considering Cooper dumped over the entire bucket.  There was water everywhere.  And then he sat down in it.

What was I thinking?  How could I have not seen that coming?  I was pulling towels off the towel rack and trying to figure out what to do with Cooper.  I put him in the bathtub with the now empty bucket and some toys while I got things cleaned up.  I ended up completely changing him because he was soaking wet!  (Although he didn’t seem to mind one bit.)

Not only did I not anticipate Cooper knocking the bucket of water over (how could I not see that coming…he knocks everything over!), but how exactly did I plan to rinse the rags I was using to clean the floor as I went along?  That’s the point of the bucket of water.  Clearly I wasn’t going to rinse the rag and then let him continue playing in dirty water.  I hadn’t even thought that far ahead apparently.  I was too overcome with my initial brilliant plan.

In the end, the floor did get cleaned.  Just not exactly how I expected it to.

Before we had a child, Scott and I always joked that when you became a parent you checked your brain at the door.  Let’s just say that I believe that more than ever.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Rockin' IKEA

We didn't bring a highchair with us to Prague.  I don't even think it was on the list.  Cooper wasn't real thrilled with the idea of them in States, anyway.  Once here, Suz tried using the stroller and then resorted to covering herself with a towel (a'la the front row @ Blue Man Group) and holding him on her lap.  

So, a couple of weeks ago, we made an IKEA run for fun (and those ubiquitous meatballs).  At lunch, he used a highchair that put him right up on the table.  We put his food in front of him, he picked up what he wanted and was perfectly happy for 10 minutes longer than usual. That's when we realized he really just wanted to be at table height.  He wanted to be a big boy with the rest of us.  Home came the newest weapon in our arsenal to keep Cooper happy and eating.  It's quite a hit.  We can put him in it near the kitchen so he can watch what's going on; keeps him outta our arms and away from the sharp knives and stuff.

Speaking of knives, we got one of those cool magnetic bars on which to hang our cutlery at IKEA, too.  And a giant shoe horn.  And a lint roller.  And a clock.  That place is dangerous.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Two Things Thursday

Yowza... It's Thursday!

I've been absolutely entranced by the craziness in two utterly opposites sides of the globe... Egypt and the Ground Hog Day Blizzard.  While camels and horses trampled through protesters on Tahrir Square, folks in the Midwest were shoveling their way out of 12 or more inches of white stuff.  Neither of which had any effect on me whatsoever... it just provided for plenty of "Suz!  Get in here! You gotta see this!" moments.

So, unlike Egypt, the web was humming along just fine over here and we Skyped with Suzi's sister's family in mid-shovel.  Mike, Lucy and the kids, Maddy & Liam, don't get a lot of coverage on the blog, so I'm making up for lost time here.  Maddy & Liam were the original "kiddos" of our family, long before Heidi and Cooper.  They're the ones that Suz got all the experience with before our li'l guy came along.  They're sweet as can be to Cooper and are great fun to run errands with Uncle Scott & Aunt Suzi.  What I particularly like about the class pictures below is that they picked those backgrounds themselves.  I didn't even know you could do that... you sure couldn't in the 80s.  Unless you got the lasers.

This week's been a week of excitement for Cooper.  He visited his first IKEA (we've got TWO of 'em) and got his first shot at a playland... a McDonald's version at that!  There's a massive mall that appeared at Namesti Republicky metro some years ago and it's a few blocks walk from our place.  Typically, the food court has all the western culinary delights... and an escalator that runs 3 floors up so you can get there quicker.  Of course, you have to negotiate your way back down floor by floor.  It wouldn't be "retail" if you didn't.