Sunday, December 27, 2009

Turkey Coma

I have some blogging to catch up on and I promise to get our Christmas pictures up soon, but in the meantime, here is Jake eating our Christmas dinner. Notice that he has abandoned his fork, is diving in with his hands and eating in half of a coma.


video

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Pants Off-Dance Off

From October, but worth posting, it was somehow overlooked on the camera prior to now :)


video

Piggy confusion

Jake knows what pigs are, as in real animal pigs. (of the oink, oink variety) He also knows that his feet/toes can be called piggies. Apparently, what he doesn't know is the distinction between them sometimes.

Jake was looking for a particular book the other day; the book was on his bookshelf and on top of his bookshelf is a piggy bank. This was what happened when he got the two "piggies" confused:

Jake: *wandering around the playroom, looking for his book*
Me: Jake, your book is on your bookshelf.
Jake: *blank stare*
Me: On your bookshelf, right under your piggy!
Jake: *lifts up one foot & looks under his 'piggy' for the missing book*


Sunday, December 13, 2009

San-na! San-na!

We've heard Santa's name being chanted in our house over the past few weeks by a little elf named Jake. It started with an innocent viewing of "Merry Madagascar" when it was on TV (cute show, by the way); Jake loved it & started asking to watch "San-na! Animals!" I then picked up a few books from the library that were about Christmas; his favorite was a lift the flap book and he loved the Santa page and saying "ho ho ho!".

While he really enjoyed the idea of Santa and looking at his picture in books & talking about him, I didn't have high hopes for the actual meeting of the big man. During a trip to the mall this weekend, we made a stop at the North Pole. He was fine in line & was talking about Santa; however, as soon as we were within 5 feet of him, the kid was shimmying up my neck making terrified sounds and saying "no no no Santa!" FAIL.



After leaving the North Pole area, Jake was all, "Whatever, who needs Santa when they have fish at the mall?"



Santa's got NOTHING on the play zone!

Ugh, I can't take reading about the Steelers loss anymore!!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Our family: 1, Christmas Tree: 0

Yeah, that's right....we defeated the Christmas tree, it's up in our living room (and doing so did not involve any blood or trips to the ER and very minimal swearing) As you read in my last post, I was a bit nervous about this tree....my fears were completely founded as it truly is ginormous. BUT, after getting the lights & ornaments on, it really is a beautiful tree.



Gracie drug herself off the couch long enough to pose for some pictures:



Don't you just want to squeeze her adorable little schmuffin face??

The true test for the tree will take place tomorrow morning, when Jake wakes up to find a shiny, sparkly tree with a bunch of presents underneath!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

"That's not going in our yard, Russ..."

"....it's going in our living room".

Classic quote from "Christmas Vacation", or a conversation that took place in our own family today? If you guessed "both", you are correct.


Some of you may remember my post from last year about Brian having a longing to chop down his own Christmas tree from a farm (as opposed to my family tradition, which includes driving to the nearest Lowes and dragging one up to the cash register) I won't go into the details as to why I'm so opposed to Brian's tradition, I whined enough about it last year, so you can refer back to that post if you're not familiar with my case against this.

However, since I'm such a nice wife, I agreed that we could hike 3 miles in the snow (uphill, both ways, of course) and do manual labor. And I really do mean in the snow, it snowed here today! :) Now, I'm not going to say that the experience was all bad...it was very festive, what with the snow & all, everyone was all bundled up....if only it hadn't been so muddy!



Anyway---I think I said I wouldn't whine in this post, so back to my original story. We have a small house...our living room is a decent size room, but our big huge couch takes up the majority of the space in it. So what do we do? Why, we pick out the fullest tree we could find, of course! At first, I thought maybe I was just exaggerating the proportions of said tree in my mind....until we hauled it up to our car & everyone stopped to look, laugh and make comments like "wow, they must have a huge house!" as Brian was trying to tie it onto the car. Not to mention the fact that even the people who worked there said stuff like, "Holy cow, look at the size of that beauty they got!"



The tree IS gorgeous...and I'm sure it will look very nice once it's up (we lacked the energy to do anything with it tonight, so pictures of the decorated tree will come later) Keep your fingers crossed that we don't pull another "Christmas Vacation" move and bust out our living room windows while trying to put it up....

Happy Thanksgiving! (yea, I'm late, I know)

Better late than never, yes?

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving. Any day that is dedicated to taking some time to pause & think about everything in your life that you are thankful for, is a good day in my book. Of course, I have a lot to be thankful for...supportive friends and family, a wonderful new job and an incredibly special & sweet little boy, who is happy and healthy.



I was also grateful to be able to spend the day relaxing at my parents house...the men took advantage of the decent weather & spent some time outside.



I'm grateful that we had someone to take a family picture of us, it seems like we are never able to get a shot of all 4 of us!



I'm also grateful that my brother is healthy....he had to have some pretty major surgery 2 days before Thanksgiving and though he was uncomfortable most of the time, at least everything is ok now. Here he is enjoying his "diaper hat" from Jake, it's very fashion-forward.



Jake says, "Gobble, Gobble!!"

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Book Review: "Firefly Lane"

Firefly Lane
Kristin Hannah

I had heard a lot of great things about this book and I was not disappointed. From the very first chapter, I was swept up in the characters' lives and couldn't wait to read everyday on my commute (now that I'm taking the bus again, my reading time has increased significantly). I'm not sure how I would even classify this book....a little bit of chick lit, coming-of-age, romance and drama.

Definitely pick this one up!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

BFF's Reunite!

This past weekend, BFF's all around were reunited....me & Melissa, Jake & Ben! We loaded up the car & headed to VA to visit our bestest friends. The boys did a lot of playing and Jake has been asking for "Bean" (aka-Ben) since we came home.



On Saturday, the men spent some quality time together while Melissa & I got in some quality shopping time at the outlets. You're probably thinking that you're impressed with my early-Christmas shopping...don't be. This was a totally selfish trip. We had one mission in mind: JEANS. We were on the hunt for jeans that were stylish, flattering and didn't show off the top half of our backsides when we bent over (NOT a cute look anymore...well, let's face it, it was never a cute look....but now it's just not socially acceptable)

We both had luck at Gap (CLEARANCE! FRIENDS & FAMILY SALE! I HAD TO CONTROL MYSELF!) and I found another pair at Banana Republic. I'm still on the hunt for a pair of Sevens (after trying on a pair of Melissa's, I was in heaven....who knew jeans could be so soft??) but I'm glad to have found the others.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Our little penguin made his rounds on Saturday....first, we went to a neighborhood pre-trick or treat party. Here is Jake, looking at a bit nervous about a kid wearing a Spiderman mask that was sitting next to him during the story that was being read:



Next, it was off to do the real thing! We weren't really sure how he'd do and we really only wanted to take him to a few houses of people that we know and show off his costume :) For someone who has never had candy, Jake very quickly caught onto the fact that when he held out his little bag & said "Treat!" he would get something. He'd get so excited and take each piece of candy out to inspect it (fortunately for mommy, he seemed to be drawn to the bright orange packaging of Reeses Cups...mmm....my favorite)


After hitting a few houses, we headed back to our house to warm up and pass out candy....he was, quite possibly, even more into this activity. He handed out the candy to each & every trick or treater that came to the door (even the tiny infants and the moms and dads who were trick or treating....don't even get me started on this, grrrrrrr.....)



Here's a look back at Jake, over the last 3 Halloweens:

2007 (about 6.5 months pregnant....Brian refused to dress as Kevin Federline, I'm not sure why....)



2008 (9 months old)



2009 (21 months old)



Thursday, October 29, 2009

Employment Update

Well, I have a lot to catch up on as far as my employment status goes because I realize that I didn't make a blog post when I started my new job. And pretty soon, I'm going to be starting my NEW-new job. Is your head spinning? Yea, mine too...it's been a whirlwind these past few weeks.

I'll try to make a long story short....I was hired as a Career Services Representative for Sanford-Brown Institute in September, which is another school owned by Career Education Corporation (who also owned PCI, my previous employer) The President of Sanford-Brown used to work at PCI, heard I was laid off, called me to see if I wanted their position.

I was torn....it wasn't exactly what I had been hoping for (as I mentioned in a previous post, I was really hoping to take this time to do something different for myself & get to where I wanted to be, preferably within a traditional college) but at the same time, there were perks to this position, including keeping my seniority within the company (which equaled extra vacation time) and a very short commute (less than 10 minutes from our house) and I had been unemployed for over 2 months with no bites on my resume at all from anywhere else, so I took the position.

Literally, the NEXT day (because isn't that just always how things work out??) Pitt called me in for an interview for a position I had applied to back in August (a Career Counselor for one of their grad schools) I explained my current situation, that I had just accepted another position, and asked if I could think about it for a day & call her back. As soon as I hung up the phone, I knew that I had to take that interview, I would kick myself forever if I at least didn't go and find out more about it. What did I have to lose? I wasn't scheduled to start the new position for another week and a half.

I went in for the first interview....then I got called back for the 2nd interview. Some time went by and I didn't hear anything else from them (I was working at Sanford Brown by this point) and finally they called back....there was a delay in the hiring process because the Assistant Director of Career Services had recently turned in her resignation due to her fiance being relocated. And now they wanted me to come in for a 3rd time to discuss the possibility of taking on that role.

Sooooo.....I was offered that position and I knew what I had to do. I felt horrible that I was about to leave a company I had just recently started with, but at the same time, I couldn't let this opportunity pass me by. I had to do it for myself; I was with PCI for over 6 years and basically did the same thing that entire time because I was comfortable and had no reason to leave. I couldn't get stuck somewhere like that again.

I was so nervous to tell my supervisor, but she was incredibly understanding and assured me that I had made the right decision. There was no room to grow in the position I was currently in, or even within Sanford-Brown and I would regret it forever if I didn't take the job at Pitt.

All of that being said, I am very excited. I think this is a good move for me and I'm thrilled to be back on a college campus and it's even better that it's going to be at my alma mater. And even though I do feel badly about leaving my current job after such a short amount of time, I don't regret taking that position at Sanford-Brown. Because now, I can go into this job with no reservations, no what-if's weighing on my mind....and I'm confident that I made the right decision for myself and our family.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Zoo Boo!

This morning we headed out to the Pittsburgh Zoo for their Zoo Boo event. Jake's costume selection of a penguin was very fitting for the occasion. He had a great time walking around to all of the tables & saying "treat!" (he couldn't get out the full "trick or treat", we'll have to practice over the next week)


Here he is with his best buds, the penguins...he was saying "BIG HUG!" and hugging the glass when they would swim by.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

It's the little things in life...like big trucks.

Yesterday was my late day at work and I got to drop Jake off at school (I'm usually on pickup duty only) and this was how the drop off went down.

*Walking into school, we see the kids from his class being loaded up into the ginormous caravan of a stroller....you know, the one that holds about 3 dozen children and I am amazed that they can steer that thing around considering I tend to take out small children and large store displays with my single stroller*

Jake: Walk! Bit-ney!
(Bit-ney = Brittany, one of his teachers who was loading up the kids)

Brittany: Jake, you're just in time to go for a walk! And guess what we're going to see?

Jake: *shrugs shoulders and does his "I dunno" face*

Brittany: We're going outside to see a big fire truck that came to visit today!!

Jake: *immediately flings himself into the stroller with his eyes as wide as saucers* Big truck? Outside? Walk? Big Truck? MAMA!!!!!!!!! BIG TRUCK!!!!!!

I wish I had a camera to capture the smile plastered across his chubby little face, while he sat in the stroller, patiently waiting with his hands clasped in his lap, tapping his little toes in anticipation.

I left daycare with a big smile plastered across my own face, knowing that he was going to have a great day.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Random Updates

I realized that I haven't done a "what Jake is up to these days" post in awhile. To be honest, he's doing so much, it's sometimes hard to keep track of. I swore I was going to keep a running list of his new words, but when there were multiple new words every day, that idea went out the window. Here's my best effort of what he has going on:

*He can repeat a lot of words (Mommy & Daddy have been VERY careful about what we're saying!)

*While he's not speaking in full sentences, he strings a lot of words together to form thoughts. (for example, outside of his classroom there's a picture of an elephant taking a bath & all of the bubbles around him have kids names on them.....the other day, we walked by & Jake did the sign for elephant then said "bubble bath")

*His favorite toys are still trucks, balls and books. If he has one of those, he's a happy camper.

*He now has 13 teeth and there are 3 more ready to come through any day now.

*I can't complain at all about his eating, he's still a champ most of the time, though there are some days that he's more picky than others or days that he refuses to eat something that he loved 3 days before. Such is the life of a toddler, I suppose. Things that he will never turn down have remained the same: chicken nuggets, YoBaby yogurt, Annie's honey bunnies and blueberries. Other things are hit or miss.

*Nearly everyday recently, we've been going "Pumpkin Hunting" where we walk around the house & count pumpkins. He knows where they are now & will run into the room and point to them during the "hunt".

*He still LOVES Elmo but has also starting obsessing over "Dinosaur Train" on PBS. He know that every morning after breakfast he gets to watch one of those shows, so he runs out of his highchair & onto the couch, grabs the remote and says either "Melmo" or "choo-choo" to indicate his selection of the day.

I think that's about it for now. I'll leave you with a few of my most recent favorite pictures:

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Baby Feet

One of my favorite things about babies :) (if I could take pictures of their smell, I would post about that, too)

















Monday, October 12, 2009

Vote for Jake!!

Do you think my kid is cute? Well then, cast your vote! We've entered him into the Gap Baby Photo Contest...just for fun, but of course if he gets a lot of votes, we'll take them :) Here's how you can do it:

Go directly to Jake's voting site OR go to the main casting call page and enter this ID: 60001245



Here is the picture you'll be voting for....handsome, yes?? :)





Thank you for voting!!!!!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Are you watching these shows??






If not, what is wrong with you? Run to your DVR and set it to these shows immediately. (and if you don't have DVR...well then, you're missing out in life)

Seriously, I hate it when I get hooked on a show, it's a great show and maybe it doesn't do so hot in the ratings right away...and rather than giving it a chance for more than half of a season, they yank it. Reunion, anyone?? My So-Called Life??

Friday Night Lights has survived a few seasons now, but just barely. It's shown on DirectTV in the fall, then NBC in the winter, so you'll have to wait a few months to catch it, but I promise you won't be disappointed (or-you could make the time between now and the winter go by faster by catching up on old episodes at NBC.com) It's drama, it's football, it's cute quarterbacks that my BFF and I crush on and get teased relentlessly by our husbands, who claim it's twisted because he plays a character who is under 18 (um, hello.....he's in his 20's in real life, so it's not illegal or anything, sheesh)
And Glee is the perfect combination of singing, dancing and sarcasm that leaves me looking forward to Wednesday nights. It's quirky and I don't think that it's the kind of humor that appeals to everyone, so I hope that it survies. (PS-even Brian enjoys it. A lot. And there's singing & dancing...I can't even get him to watch the opening sequence of "Grease" with me after 8 years of being together. So it says a lot that he loves it)
Why are you still sitting there? Go turn on your TV to these shows and tell your friends to do the same. You have TV shows to catch up on, get moving!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Mumpkins!

"Mumpkin" = Pumpkin in Jakespeak.

And he was able to see plenty of them at Schramm's Farm this morning.



Unfortunately for him, just as he was starting to really enjoy himself, he was totally betrayed by his beloved pumpkins when he tripped over a vine & fell face first into a huge pumpkin. He was a bit skeptical after that and I can't say that I blame him...his little mishap resulted in a bump on his head almost immediately.



Eventually, he forgot about the incident and ran around the farm....happy pumpkin season to everyone!!

PS~I had my first Pumpkin Spice Latte of the season the other day (I know, I'm late!)...ahhhhhhh, so worth the wait!!! Pure.Heaven.

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