Friday, August 31, 2012


I was just looking through our pictures and discovered that there is a quite a lot I haven't blogged about.  Nothing really very exciting but there are some cute pictures of Tatum of course. :) I do have a good excuse for my blogging hiatus.  I have been working on our 2011 family photo book.  I have been working on it pretty much since the first of the year (very slowly, obviously). I really wanted to just get it done so I could check it off my list so the last couple of weeks I promised myself that any opportunity I had to be on the computer (so whenever Tatum is asleep and I am awake and don't have something more important to do) I would work on the book.  That left no room for blogging.  So sad, I know.  I'm sure it was missed by so many! ;) But I finished the book, so now I can blog!

We have been playing with bubbles a lot lately.  In the tub, in the kitchen, outside, everywhere! I'm always looking for something new to do with Tatum. I find that I get bored with her toys and books much more quickly than she does.  So bubbles it is.  Like I said, nothing too exciting but there are some cute pictures if I must say so myself.

It is always amazing to me how much my love for Tatum can always outweigh everything else. There have been some rough days in the last few weeks where lots of tears were shed by both of us. And yet no matter how frustrated I am with her by the time she goes to bed at night, I am only overcome by my love for her when I see her adorable face again.  I mean, can you really stay mad at that face?! I am also grateful that the reverse is true as well.  She gets pretty mad at me when I let her cry at bed time.  But by morning all is forgiven! Thank goodness she doesn't hold a grudge.
 We love each other, even if both of our smiles seem a little forced.

Have a great Labor Day weekend!

Monday, August 20, 2012

8 months

Today was Tatum's 8 month birthday! Time still seems to be flying by.  I wonder if that will ever change. I waited until way too late to take her picture today so it was really unsuccessful.  Her poor mood mixed with my lack of photography skills does not equal happy results.  Every now and again it will hit me just how bad I am at taking pictures and I'll think about how I should do some reading and practice so I get better, but then I forget again.  Vicious cycle I tell you.

Anywho, back to Tatum. :)  She's a cutie, I'll tell you that.  And she's a little stinker.  Here is what she is up to lately:

-CRAWLING! She's as mobile as a monkey and into everything these days.  It is so much fun but it certainly does change your life! Gone are the days of sitting her down and knowing she will stay.
-She can pull herself up to standing and it is one of her favorite things to do.
-Just recently she has learned to hold on and slowly lower herself rather than just sort of falling from standing to sitting.  This development makes for a much happier Tatum.
-When she is standing she will let go and balance on her own for a couple of seconds. It never lasts long.
-She is just starting to learn to give kisses. It is almost exclusively to me, and even then it is hit or miss so it is hard to know if it's just by accident or if she actually is learning.
-She has a clear favorite when it comes to books.  My mom gave her a Farm Animals book and it is the only book she gets excited for and will sit still for the whole thing.  And she will do it over and over and over again. And again.
-She still seems to hate to sleep, much to my chagrin. I can't even express how much I would love to sleep through the night. Just once.  Last night she woke up every 2 hours! What?!! It's like having a newborn all over again.
-She likes her bath, loves being outside and loves kids!
-She hates to get dressed or undressed (it is painful for all involved), hates laying down in the tub (or anywhere for that matter), and hates it when I shower when she is awake.
-Last week she started to "get" Skype.  We Skype with my sister a lot and occasionally my parents and my brother's kids.  She has always just done her own thing but last week she started to react when she would hear it ringing and now seems to understand that that is a person on the screen.  It is so cute! As soon as she hears it ringing she will crawl to the computer and wait for someone to say hi. 
-She insists on playing with my hair as she falls asleep.

And here is the oh-so-happy miss Tatum.
 Sad, but really kind of funny.
 The only genuine smile we got out of her.
 Reading her favorite book to get her to stop pulling a fit about having her picture taken.

 Little stinker. She was in a perfectly fine mood as long as she wasn't laying on the floor to get her picture taken.
Happy 8 month birthday Tatum!

Monday, August 13, 2012

the hand thing

Maybe you remember a couple of posts ago when I mentioned that Tatum does this thing with her left hand all the time.  She hold it out palm up (kind of like what you might do when you say "I don't know" or "where is it").  Then she will bounce it up and down too. It is really quite bizarre.  But the picture I put up in that post didn't really show what it was so we have been on a mission to catch it on camera ever since. Here are the results:

It is so random but I have to say it is one of my favorite things about Tatum.  It is just so dang cute and so quirky and I love it. She's the cutest.

Friday, August 10, 2012

sick kids and sleepovers

Tuesday night Kelbie, Caden and Macy came over for one last sleep over before school starts next week. Can you believe school starts already? It seems so early! It ended up being the wrong day to choose for a party though.  That afternoon Tatum started to get fussy and had a bit of a fever.  I thought maybe it was just teething and figured it would be gone by morning. I thought wrong.  Her fever got to 101 during the night and the poor girl just had a hard time sleeping.  So I was up most of the night, sleeping on and off in the chair in her room and out on the couch while holding her.  It was a long night.  Her fever went down around 4 in the morning and she started sleeping a little better. Then the next morning she just wasn't herself.  She wouldn't nurse or drink from a bottle and she was so clingy.  I'm pretty sure one of the things the kids look forward to most when coming to our house is playing with Tatum and sadly they got to do very little of it.  I was able to sneak away without her noticing in order to take a shower and get ready and she played with them just fine.  But that was about it.  On Tuesday night we watched the olympics, had some dessert, playing ping pong and the boys stayed up late to play the Wii of course. Then Wednesday morning we watched the movie Mirror, Mirror and then headed to Cold Stone for some ice cream in the early afternoon before taking them home.  Certainly not the most exciting time...I often wonder why they even request sleep overs, we are so boring!  Of course we were a little more distracted this time with our sick child. It's the first time she has really been sick and I'm not looking forward to the next. It is sad and exhausting and no matter what, you worry.  Or at least I do.

I was letting Tatum cry it out for her afternoon nap and when I went in to check on her this is what I found. This was my first sign that she wasn't feeling well (so instead of rescuing her, I took the time to snap a picture. Yes, I am a great mom, I know. :)) The chewing on the crib is what led me to believe it might just be teething.
 She had to show off for Kelbie and Macy and stand up in the tub even though it's so slippery she almost always falls.
 Here she is in the morning sitting with Caden for part of the movie.  So lethargic.
Well I guess it's good to have the first illness behind us.  Now we will be pros in the future haha.  And hopefully the next sleepover won't be quite as boring guys, sorry!

Thursday, August 9, 2012


This summer has been unusually hot.  Ever since we got back from vacation the heat hasn't seemed to let up.  I am lucky if I survive a walk with a quick stop at the park swings with Tatum, because being outside has just felt so miserable.  But if I can't be outside what am I supposed to do?! Beats me.  I struggled with this for several weeks.  It just seemed like Tatum and I were greatly limited because there weren't too many outdoor activities that sounded appealing. Some days sure seemed to drag by.  Finally my dad suggested I buy a pool for the backyard and try to start little baby "swim lessons" with Tatum.  Really just for something to do, not because we actually thought Tatum would learn to swim.  The next week I found a little blow up pool on clearance since it is getting to be the end of the season. It is big enough that I could sit in it with her, but there certainly won't be any swimming going on for either of us by any stretch of the imagination.

We have actually only used it once so far. Tatum wasn't sure she liked it at first. I think the water was too chilly. But she got used to it and enjoyed it. It's really just like taking a bath for her, but outside and not naked haha. 

We got to do some real swimming last weekend at the North Liberty pool. We had never been to the pool before but were planning on going last weekend because it was half price.  It has hardly rained at all this summer, but of course as soon as we make plans to swim the weather makes plans to rain.  We got quite the downpour early Saturday afternoon but we decided we would go anyway, hoping there wouldn't be a crowd and assuming it would warm right back up after the rain.  Well we were right about the crowds, but it really didn't warm up.  We were pleasantly surprised to find out, however, that it was one admission price for both the indoor and outdoor pools.  So we used the outdoor pool until Tatum started to get a little cold and then we headed inside. It was a lot of fun!
 See the slide in the background above?  Brennan decided to go down it with Tatum. It was probably the funniest thing I have seen in quite some time.  As you can see it's a tunnel slide (and made for kids, so slightly uncomfortably small for Brennan) and the bottom of the tunnel is about a foot off the platform. So Brennan had to sit on the platform with Tatum on his lap, stick his feet and lower legs up into the slide, reach up to the bars above the slide and try to pull them both in.  It was hilarious.  I was watching from the bottom and as I saw them coming I thought for sure Tatum was going to go under since Brennan had to lay down and he would have no time to sit up before being dropped in the water.  But somehow he managed to keep her above the water.  I was watching and I really couldn't tell you how he did it.
You'll notice that Tatum is holding a book in this picture. She had a death grip on it the whole time.  If we took it away she would immediately snatch it back. 

Next up was the indoor pool. At first the water felt so warm but after the first five minutes I think it felt a lot colder than outside.  
 Tatum was a little sleepy by the time we went inside.

 She was a little freaked out when Brennan stood her up like this, hence the panicked reaching for him.

It seems as though she might be teething. You'll notice her hands in her mouth in these last two pictures. She has been extra chew-crazy lately so maybe we'll have a tooth to show off soon. 

Monday, August 6, 2012

the picnic that wasn't

Last week I decided to meet Brennan down in Coralville after he got off work. The farmer's market is right by his office and starts an hour after he gets off.  There is also a cute little park with a pond next to his office.  So, we figured we could have a little picnic and let Tatum play outside for a little while, grab a few things at the farmer's market after is started and head home. Great idea right?  Well I sure thought so. And I made some pretty yummy chicken salad avocado wraps for dinner.  Little did I know there were killer ducks at this pond...

We hadn't even opened up our cooler when we were completely surrounded by ducks.  I had Tatum on a blanket on the ground and I had to snatch her up before the ducks ate her.  I kid you not. There were also two geese and Brennan claims he was attacked by geese in Mount Vernon the before that, so I was a little nervous about the geese. 

Okay, okay, so maybe the ducks and the geese weren't deadly or out to get us. But it still managed to pretty much ruin our picnic and gave us no opportunity to just relax and enjoy being outside. I really didn't feel like I could leave Tatum on the ground since the ducks had no qualms about coming right up to all of us and they were pecking at the blanket she was sitting on.  There was a sign by the pond that said "Help keep our wildlife wild. Don't feed the animals." Clearly, that sign has been ignored because these ducks thought we were there to feed them.

Tatum and Brennan playing. Of course, by the time we were completely finished and just about ready to go, the ducks had finally given up hope and had given us a little space.

 Attempting to get photographic proof of the way Tatum always holds her left arm/hand.  She always sticks it out, palm up, kind of like what Brennan is demonstrating with his right hand.
 I wish I would have thought to get out the camera when the ducks were all around us, but of course I didn't.  So I just got this shot of Brennan and Tatum with some ducks on our way out.
Trust me, the ducks were creepy.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

new tricks

In the last couple of weeks Tatum started sporadically pulling herself up on things but she was so unstable and would fall. I am amazed at how quickly she masters her new skills.  One day she can't do it, the next day she is a pro. I wish I could learn that fast.  The novelty of this newest skill has yet to wear out.  She thinks she is is the coolest thing when she gets to a standing position. It is way too cute.

Speaking of skills mastered overnight, how about crawling? I swear all I have to do is turn around and she is capable of something new.  The army crawl is a thing of the past.  She almost exclusively hands-and-knees-crawls now.  It is fun and exciting to see her gain these new skills but it these mobility abilities sure do change your life.  She is into everything!  Here's the proof: a video of her crawling in order to get her hands on the computer, little stinker.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012


We are trying to take full advantage of the last few weeks of relative relaxation before Brennan heads back to school and we go back to feeling like we never see him. A combination of the extreme heat and a 7:30 bedtime for Tatum makes us feel like some pretty boring people, but we have managed to have some fun.

After living in North Liberty for about two years we have finally started exploring our little town.  We tried out their frisbee golf course one day.  It wasn't the most impressive, but hey, it's something to do!

Plus, Brennan wants to be sure to get Tatum started young. :)
Speaking of starting her young....we have a ping pong table! It was Brennan's anniversary/Father's day present.  It has actually been really great with the aforementioned early bedtime.  We now have another option besides plopping down in front of the tv!  And since Tatum is going to be a tennis star it's good for her to get an early start with ping pong. :)
North Liberty has some pretty nice biking trails that we have been able to try out a few times.  If the ride is even kind of long, Tatum will inevitably fall asleep by the end.  It looks so uncomfortable, but there's no waking her up.

Getting a drink halfway through a ride.  Who knew riding on the back was such hard work?
Snoozing. Her neck has got to be sore after sleeping like that!
 Tatum went to her first birthday party last weekend.  It was funny to watch her with all the kids.  We tried to get a picture of all the kids there, but that didn't go so well. Here are our off-to-the-side attempts.

The birthday girl, Oakley, is the one crying.  The poor girl was not having the best time at her own party. All of the kids, except little Eliza, are mobile so getting them to stay was a challenge. Tatum, though, was so mesmerized by all that was going on that she didn't move a muscle.  It was the funniest thing.

We went bowling the other night with my family. It's always nice to do things with them because there are always plenty of people willing to entertain the tater tot. Here she is with Caden.
These days Tatum is wishing she was old enough to eat whatever we eat. She always tries to beg for some of our food.  Whenever I eat an apple I let her lick it a few times and then when I throw the core away she will just cry and cry.  Kind of sad but it makes me laugh every time.  We made some homemade popsicles a few weeks ago with sprite, white grape juice, and mango.  Tatum would seriously go nuts every time we had them, climbing all over us trying to grab them. She got her way, of course. So spoiled.
Those are some of the things we have been up to lately! Every day Tatum seems to learn more ways to get into trouble.  She keeps me on my toes that's for sure.  I am dreading the loneliness the fall will bring but for now I'm just trying to enjoy these last few weeks of summer.