Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Winter is coming

James is preparing for winter by trying on his knit hat from Tia Ana. It still fits and James doesn't mind wearing it! He was very cute- his hair was hidden so all I saw looking back at him in his carseat was eyebrows and gorgeous brown eyes.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Football Sunday

Another relaxing day. It was a football day so the pictures are below of James and his Dada watching football, bundled up in blankets. It was also a cold, rainy day- actually, we saw a bit of snow falling but it didn't stick to the ground. I've been trying to teach James the word "cold" but he seems to really like "hot" much better. Well, he'll learn. We'll step outside in the snow one day and he'll receive that lesson too quickly :)

My camera was charging so I missed James' excitement as we watched football. He ran around the room with his little football, yelling "touchdown!" and then throwing himself down in a tumble, rolling around on the ground. It was pretty funny to watch.

So here's a list of words that James has learned. Okay, this first word is pretty incredible. Its probably not in any almost-two-year old's list but our little James is a genius:

octagon! ("o-gon", in his shapes book)
help (Yay! I've been trying to teach this one for a long time!)
home run
obama (pronounced "Omama"- he recognizes Obama on TV!)
R2 (as in R2D2)
Grandma (pronounced "Buck-a")

Sorry if there are any repeats in that list. The list is getting so long that I don't remember which words I may have already written down in earlier posts. James is amazing :) I don't know how many words he should be saying at his age (almost TWO!) but I would suspect he's in the normal range. He's making the occasional two-word sentences too.

I almost forgot to write about the most exciting thing James does. He knows parts of the alphabet! Jim has been working with James to get him to repeat the alphabet letters. They'll slowly go through the alphabet, one letter at a time. Jim will say "A", James will repeat, "B", etc all the way to "Z". So now James will randomly say the letters as he's walking around the house. But lately we've caught James saying the alphabet correctly A through about M. Some of the letters aren't exactly right but he seems to have the rhythm right. Jim and I just sat quietly in amazement when we heard it the first time. We didn't want to ruin the moment and say anything, but when he got stuck at M or whatever letter, we were like WOW JAMES! We've now concentrated on the alphabet, especially when we need his attention, like at diaper changes and bathtime, when we don't want him squirming all over. Its working well, obviously!

In yesterday's video you can see and hear that he's working on his numbers and counting too.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Mama is home!

So I did celebrate my birthday with a nice dinner and then birthday cake. I was in Atlanta and out to dinner with Mary, the assistant principal at my school.

So I came home late on Friday night. I was excited to see James the next morning. Here is a video when I got James up for the day...

He remembered me! He didn't ignore me like the last time I was out of town- that time for a week.

James had a great day of playing today:

Later at night, James played pool with his Dada.

I forgot to write this last week but James was calling Grandma Rosie, not Grandma but "Buck-a". We don't know if Grandma is hard for him to pronounce? Here's a very short video of James referring to his Grandma...

James has lots of new words and I still have much more to update. I have run out of steam yet again and will need to post more later. Enjoy the pictures and videos.

Thursday, October 23, 2008


I am in Atlanta for a work conference. There isn't time for sightseeing or anything, so its just work.

I miss my family :( I've talked to Jim and James twice now, hearing Sweet Baby Nene's voice was too cute. Jim had him say "Hi Mama" and then I said all the words I know James knows and he repeated everything. I'm glad that I was able to tell my boys that I love them.

I can't wait to go home tomorrow, even though I won't get home until after James' bedtime. I hope he greets me the next morning with his customary "Mama!!!"

There is so much love! :)

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Prepare to be overwhelmed

I have a new camera! Jim bought me a camera for my birthday :) I have lots of pictures so I will put them in slideshows below...

First, a video from the last Mommy and Me class.

Grandma plays with James. He LOVED books this weekend. He loves to point out the pictures/words he knows.
James loves his Tia and Tio.
Trying the close up on my camera :)
James loves to play outside. He especially likes to stand on the rock and point to the "tee".
Grandma, Tia, James, and myself had fun with sidewalk chalk.

I have done little else tonight but upload pictures and make the videos. I will write some commentaries tomorrow, from work if I have time! I really need to relax :) Fun weekend!!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Word explosion

So it seemed that James learned quite a few words in one day. Maybe he knew them all along but we hadn't heard them yet. Its possible that he learns words at Sandra's and we just don't hear them until the time is right. So here's the list that I can remember:

bug (points to ladybugs on window, bugs on the driveway)
moon (points to the moon in several different books)
pumpkin (in books and his pumpkin sippy cup)
balloon (book)
oh man! (just likes to use this expression whenever possible)
pablo ("paa foo"- a character in the Backyardigans cartoon)

Another amazing thing is that he's identifying things that belong to me (or Dada). For example, he'll point to my book and say "Mama book" or my shoes as "Mama shoe".

I haven't updated since the Mommy & me class on Thursday night. It was a hectic night. James and I arrived at home and ate pretty early. We left for the class at 5:10 and arrived there a few minutes early. The class is at a dance studio and there were tons of school-age girls running around in tights and leotards. The little kids trickled in and soon enough we were in a studio classroom with all the kids and their parents. Probably about 12-15 little girls (all wearing pink, most wearing tights and little dance outfits) and one other little boy, about the same age. The half hour was crammed with music, instructions, and props. They put on a Mousercise song and all of us encouraged our kids to dance around the room, twirling our arms, clapping our hands, or other movements. The instructor was an older lady with lots of energy. The next song was the Hokey Pokey, the Chicken dance, and some other funky song. Sooo corny but all the kids seemed to like it. It truly was a lot of work for ME, as the Mom. James was interested in the music and movements about 30% of the time. In the other moments he was dancing to the beat of his own drum- the class was doing all of their stuff on the outskirts of the room, well James liked to stand right in the middle of the studio and watch everyone. He wouldn't stand by me like all of the other kids. He was interested in the props for about a minute and then would wander around the room. What was I doing this whole time? Chasing after him. Encouraging him to participate. Everyone laughed and smiled at him, so it was all good. I'm sure it will get better with each class we go to.

I did learn that James loves to tumble. Somersaults, specifically. He needs help getting his legs up and over but he laughs when he lands.The weirdest thing happened to us on Saturday. We were attacked by wild turkeys!! We were driving down Hwy 242, going towards Coon Rapids when we were caught in a weird traffic jam. Cars ahead of us were at complete standstill and lots of honking going on. When we got closer we saw a flock of turkeys attacking cars! The turkeys were pecking at the tires of the cars, making it difficult for the cars to maneuver around the turkeys. Jim told me to just speed ahead, that the turkeys would move, but I couldn't risk hitting them. I swerved to the right to miss them but they came right up to the passenger window and I think James saw them too. It was too weird!

Its a short but long week for me again this week. Parent/teacher conferences again on Tuesday night, but a fieldtrip day on Wednesday will make it an easy day. And then no school on Thursday or Friday! And Grandma Rosie (solo) is coming to visit on Thursday for a long weekend! Grandpa Larry will join us later. And Tia Ana and Tio Rich will be coming too! We hope to have a fun day at the pumpkin patch or something else fall-like.

Some videos from Mommy and Me:

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Fall weather

I love fall! October is my favorite month! Apple orchards, birthdays, fall leaves, our anniversary, and getting Baby James ready for winter. We tried on his snowsuit from last year and it still fits! Last year he was barely walking and it was pretty roomy on him. This year it fits perfectly and he will be able to move well. Even his boots (unworn) from last year still fit. Yay!I have a long day today. I have parent/teacher conferences so SuperDada is on his own tonight. He is picking up James from daycare and they'll have a nice night together. I imagine lots of football playing, reading books, and climbing on Dada :)

Oh and I'm sure James will insist on this:It is his new thing. He will climb on his chair and snuggle up with the blanket. If he can't wrap the blanket around himself, he will call for us and we'll finish the job. Its his favorite tv watching position (though we're still trying to cut back). A great show that James LOVES is the Backyardigans. Its a kids show on the Noggin channel. There is a cute penguin character named Pablo, and some other animals. James is able to recognize Pablo. He attempts to say Pablo but it comes out like "Paaabo."

I hope daycare enjoyed the apple cake I brought this morning. We are trying to use up those apples from the orchard so I made a small cake and mini cakes last night. I brought the heart-shaped cake to Sandra and she said the kids will love it.

Saturday, October 4, 2008


We went to our favorite breakfast spot this morning and then headed over to Stillwater to pick up Grandpa Roger. We stopped at the farmers market there because Grandpa knew that James loves his strawberries. I also bought some great smelling natural soap for myself and a gentle oatmeal bar for James. I love farmers markets!

James in the car:
After that we headed to the Afton apple orchard. What fun! There was a playground, chain saw carving, a petting zoo, hale bales to play on, apple cider pressing (with samples of course!), and a hay ride. I think James enjoyed it all! See our pictures below.

James needed constant nose wipes. Poor kid!
Grandpa Roger joined James at the playground.James really enjoyed climbing and playing on the hale bales with all the kids. He reaches down to give Dada a kiss. Sweet :)
Grandpa Roger gets a wet kiss too.
James and Mama look at the goats and llama.
James tries a big boy swing! He liked it even though I had to keep scooting his bottom back on the swing.
James sat amazingly still on the hay ride. Here's a pumpkin patch that looked interesting.
The Tauer men on the hay ride.
So we had a great day! James didn't nap until the car ride from Afton to Stillwater. We woke him up to eat lunch. James woke up crabby. He wouldn't sit in the highchair, wasn't satisfied with any of the food I brought, and wasn't happy to walk around the restaurant. We ended up changing our order to take-out and eating at Grandpa Roger's house. I was a little embarrassed that James wasn't well-behaved but its to be expected at this age, I figure. I'd rather leave than ruin the dining experience of others, us included! James did well enough at Grandpa's house but didn't eat much. He napped just a tiny bit on the way home. What a great day though!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

OMama & Happy Anniversary to us!

We went out to dinner last night because Jim craved a hamburger :) After that we headed back to Northtown mall because Jim needed a Hawaiian style shirt for his work party on Friday. James and I played at Eggs & Bacon again. Another little boy was there again and James watched him curiously. The boy's mom told me that he was 2 years old plus 3 months. Wow, that kid has some rough and tumble huge energy! James plays much more calmly and quietly. I'm glad because that mom looked exhausted!

James did add a word to his vocabulary: jump! I watched him stand on top of a play structure and wind up like he was going to JUMP! He pumped his little arms and then would just step down. But he learned to say "jump!" while doing it.

Another word we're working on: Obama! James says it in response to my question Who is going to win? He says, "OMama!" So apparently I'm on the election ticket too. Me and Obama. I know one of my dear friends and then Uncle Joe will not be happy with the OMama love, but we respect everyone's opinions at the Tauer house. It really is cute though!

We are sorry that Grandma Rosie and Grandpa Larry canceled their trip to see us this week. Maybe sometime soon!

This weekend we're headed to Stillwater to see Grandpa Roger and also visit the apple orchard. We're looking forward to it!