Thursday, April 28, 2011

Easter weekend Videos

It's getting harder to video Matthew as he never, ever stops moving. EVER. However, we took a few last weekend and of those he managed to be in the scene for at least a few. Here he is being all boy and driving the playground equipment:



And here he is a little confused as he listened to the Arapaho creation story at the Historic Trails Museum as told by William C'Hair.



He loved the museum. Here's a compilation of him exploring 3 exhibits. First, he and daddy rode in the covered wagon as they forded the river. Then Matthew set out a camp and demonstrated the forces that most likely created the most hardship for the settlers (toddlers!) and finished up with his favorite activity of all - sending telegraphs. The interactive was a really cool way to explain telegraphs to a texting generation, but most important to Matthew it made a lot of noise, had lights and moved!



And finally, here's the little dude unpacking his Play-doh fun from the Easter bunny:


And this picture was part of a very unsuccessful and blurry movie as Matthew was headed off to check out the fish/ducks. He looks so grown-up and corporate-like holding his "coffee" cup with one hand while in his dress up outfit I had to share it.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Easter, Part I of ??

This weekend we headed to the umm, glorious vacation location of Casper, WY. Though we were there under the not so great circumstances of my grandmother's surgery, we were able to make the best of it and grandma came through with flying colors and a fairly early discharge from the hospital. Because of Matthew's lingering ear infection, cough and runny nose, he didn't get to see much of grandma but he did enjoy Casper with daddy while I went to the hospital to be with grandma. He and daddy went to the park:

And he enjoyed the ice cream that came with the kid's meal at Sanford's,

but mostly, he enjoyed hanging out at the hotel. We picked a very family friendly hotel with a crazy fun lobby and lots of pools and hot tubs. Matthew's not exactly fearless when it comes to pools, but he did enjoy taking his bath toys into the kiddy pool.

On Saturday Grandma headed home and we decided to play it safe and keep our potentially germy son with us instead of heading back to Lander. After the last trip we made to grandma's where we all ended up really sick the next week I wasn't willing to take chances that Matthew was on the upswing and didn't pick up something new along the way. We stayed in Casper and headed to check out free admission day at the historic trails museum. There was also a neat quilt show going on:

Matthew thought this skull was pretty cool, as well as a few other exhibits that ended up as videos. Maybe those will get posted later this week. I was very impressed with the center, which was a great mix of activities, facts and perspectives on the California, Mormon and Oregon trails.

More pictures from back at the hotel lobby. Matthew liked the bear:

But his favorite thing was watching and feeding the fish. Well, okay, he also really liked pointing out the stuffed ducks that were mounted above the fish pond.

We tried to catch "Spring Fest" at the mall but were a little late. Matthew begrudgingly posted for this shot for me before he tried to dismantle the display.

More time at the pool.

I brought our hard-boiled eggs and dye with us for the weekend but never really found a way to dye eggs with a toddler (who has a much stronger arm than last year) where the hotel staff wouldn't curse me forever. We decided to forgo dyeing eggs and Easter brunch until next weekend but Matthew did hang out in his handsome new threads from Grandma Dot as we ummm, had a very fancy continental breakfast and (where else is open Easter day) McDonald's lunch.

And he was pretty thrilled that the Easter Bunny found him and left a new play-doh kit, crayons and books.

The trip home was gorgeous and uneventful, or as uneventful as it can be with a toddler and pregnant woman who has to stop all the time. Matthew was thrilled to get home to "iris" which is now his word for pretty much all cats, wild, domestic, real, fake or even when Olivia is sitting right next to Iris. We apparently took more videos than pictures this weekend but uploading today isn't in the internet's plan.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

More blessed than we deserve

Matthew's very generous grandparents and uncles have showered our house with fun things again. From new books and ducks, to puzzles, singing cards and tractors Matthew has had a great week. We are very fortunate to have so many people looking out for this handsome kid. He got this John Deere from Uncle Matt's Woot obsession and couldn't wait to start playing. He even insisted on putting it together . . .

But eventually he let Daddy help a little.

Even though we are positive it is not put together correctly right now (curse you Uncle Matt!) Matthew loves it and unlike his other riding toy, he can actually go forward on this one. We were hoping to take it outside because it's spring, but of course spring here means something a little different than back east and we woke up to a few inches of snow this morning so cruising around our tiny living room will have to do for now.

And here he is playing with daddy, only to take a break to check out his new favorite duck. He now insists on a high five pretty much every time he catches a ball.


And here he is giving his bath toys their baths. James ran out of body parts for Matthew to wash on his own body so they started washing the monsters.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

In good spirits at least

So, the past month's timeline went something like week 1 and 2, cold/cough, week 3, double ear infection, week 4 improvement but tugging on ear - just fluid according to the pediatrician, week 5, cold/cough recurring double ear infection.

On the upside, Matthew has learned to cope really well. He still sleeps well (except waking early), naps okay and for the most part his demeanor ranges from adorable to moderately cranky with a serious case of the whines. In the words of his pediatrician on Monday while looking in his ears "I'd expect him to be a lot more cranky with these." Here he is earlier this week playing with daddy and showing off his favorite words: more and beez (please).

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Animal Adventures

On Saturday we headed down to West Yellowstone to check out the Grizzly and Wolf Discovery Center. The roads had cleared but there certainly was a lot of snow around.

We made it just in time for the Birds of Prey demonstration. It was very similar to what we experienced at the Bridger Raptor Fest but this time there were probably 150 fewer people and we got a front row seat for the demonstration.

There were lots of great exhibits inside, but Matthew was ready to go outside to check out the wolves . . . who were all napping when we first arrived.

The center has 2 packs in separate enclosures and with the combination of snowpack and wolf location, we got a great view. The bears however, were being a little more stubborn.

Between the two wolf packs is a Naturalist cabin with a full wall of windows on each side. This allowed us to get some great views of the wolves as they woke up and started playing.

Still no luck with the bears and I think this guy was just taunting me over the snowbank.

Between the exhibits, bears and wolves, there was plenty of space and not many people so Matthew took full advantage of all the snow and slush to stomp in. Judging by his constant squeals and generally pleasant demeanor even though it was lunch/nap time, I'd say he really enjoyed it.

He even learned a new word.


And here James tried to get a picture of us while Matthew squirmed trying to get a better look at the giant bear.

On the way home, we spotted this moose along the highway, not too far from my last moose spotting. Matthew slept right through the excitement.

He woke up just in time for us to arrive to Bozeman and headed over to the ranch supply store to check out the chicks. Matthew loved them.

Then we topped off the day with ice cream. Since we were denied both milk and ice cream in West Yellowstone (winter distribution of fresh food in the area is very limited, even at McDonalds) we decided to go for ice cream when we got home. Matthew had a great time and I enjoyed that Uncle Ed was here to chase him through the tunnels.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Children's Museum

Our Friday road trip with Uncle Ed got rerouted after we woke up to over 5 inches of snow and an entire day of rain, snow and sleet. We already hit up the Museum of the Rockies earlier this week so we decided to head out to the Children's Museum this afternoon. As always, Matthew made first made sure to study up on the native fish.

And sat down to play piano with daddy.

I'm not certain who had more fun, Matthew or Uncle Ed but the fridgits were a big hit. If I wasn't certain the cats would lose the marbles in .05 seconds in our house I'd love a set for our fridge.

Then Matthew had to fight Mommy over this awesome gear toy.

He's figured out how to turn it on and off as well as change the speed and put on new gears . . . and believes he deserves a round of applause each time.

Then we went downstairs for some more fun. Matthew is definitely a cautious kid and wasn't sticking his face in the blower like some others, but he certainly found the Bernoulli principle highly entertaining! There was another little boy there who liked to hit and knock the ball around while Matthew preferred retrieving it. It was a perfect partnership!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

A Great Week

Someone got a great new present from Uncle Ed and has been dutifully using it. He likes scrounging for change and saving it.

He's also really enjoyed having an extra lap to sit in for story time.

Uncle Ed's getting to do lots of block building, reading and playing. It's been a good week so far (and yes, we do get out of our pajamas every once in while!)

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Survival!

Apparently we brought back a death plague from WY last weekend (or brought one to WY, I'm not sure.) The little dude missed the whole week from daycare with a high fever, hacking cough and what we eventually discovered was a double ear infection. He's been pretty miserable and non-photogenic. James and I have been propping ourselves up with OTC drugs and antibiotics. It was my last concert weekend which is a pretty non-negotiable thing for me with regards to missing work.

On the Sundays of my concert weekend, James and Matthew come help pack away the concert stuff and afterward we celebrate by going out to some family-chain restaurant where they will bring me glass after glass of water and soda and some sort of comfort food. Today's choice was my absolute favorite, BBQ. Someone was dressed rather appropriately for the occasion in his little overalls and dug right in. Luckily I still had my work camera in my pocket!

We have an exciting visitor this coming week and aren't all whiny and snotty anymore so hopefully we'll be back to more pictures and videos. He's learning so much so quickly and has a great sense of humor (when he's feeling well), I'd like to capture more of this stage before he's a walking/running, talking machine.

Five on Friday

1.  Look at these winter white legs out enjoying the sunshine at the dino park.  Spring has FINALLY sprung! These boys went from winter di...