Sunday, December 30, 2007

Justin is a toddler. He can walk, and is doing so more and more. Crawling is still his method of choice when he is in unfamiliar territory or has far to go, but each day he is doing a little more walking. Here are a few Justin the Toddler video clips, mostly put there for Grandma Pat, but anyone who wants to watch them is welcome. I just don't think that they are as exciting to most people as they are go Grandma. :) He is wearing clothes from Grandma Pat too.

Here is me (out of view) chasing Justin around the coffee table. He usually plays this game with Dad and he loves it. The table and the couch provide support so he doesn't have to walk on his own.

Round and Round! Justin likes the Busy Ball Popper (or whatever it is called) and also the Busy Ball Popper Train. He really likes the balls. When they go astray he will point to them and expect Mom or Dad to bring them back for him.

I wanted to get a clip of him walking, but he was having a hard time focusing on what he was holding, me, the camera, stuff on the floor, and walking at the same time.

Justin was walking all over the place so I pulled out the camera. That's when he stopped walking and started playing. I did get some walking on camera eventually. He just doesn't cooperate!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Here are some Christmas pictures, including:

Justin admiring the food proccessor. He is sure it is for him.

Figuring out the busy ball popper.

Rocking on the Rock, Roll, and Ride Bike (which I highly recommend, very cool).

Pulling a Pooh "radio" out of the gift bag --finally!

Using a present to climb up on the table.


Even though it is Justin's second Christmas, it seems like his first. Being born just a few days before Christmas meant that he (and I!) were out of it. This year he can do a lot more than he could last year. A bit overwhelming for him so I am glad we went small! Some of our things haven't arrived yet and I think that is for the best. It will make Christmas last longer. Justin can only handle so many new things at a time. After 2 1/2 hours of opening presents and playing he was begging for a nap. He even pointed to his crib and was out like a light! Forty minutes later he was up and good to go though. That didn't even give me time to upload pics and videos and do the blog. Currently he is entertained with new toys again. :)

I hope to soon be able to edit video from the video camera and put some of those things up, but for the meantime, there is plenty of poor footage taken with our camera. Enjoy (or not!) Of course there are also some photos for your viewing pleasure. This entry is getting kind of busy, so I think I will post the pics separately.

Playing with unwrapped presents was a lot of fun. Unwrapping was also fun. Wrapping paper and boxes can be as much fun as the actual gift. Why or why does Mommy clean them up and throw them away? After lots of practice ripping paper, gift bags can pose a new challenge. Sometimes my baby is not the sharpest knife in the drawer. Either that or he has me trained well. Why put forth effort if someone else will do it for you?

It doesn't seem to matter who the present is for either. I suppose that since he rules the house everything is pretty much his. If he can reach it, it's fair game as far as he's concerned. One of his favorite games is to put things in a container and then take them back out again. He can do this over and over and over again. He likes to add variety sometimes by transporting the items somewhere, preferably under something. What could be better than taking things out of a box, moving them a couple at a time and putting them under the couch, bringing them back again and placing them back in the box. The excitement! Sometimes things get pushed back too far and it becomes a #1 priority to scream until Mommy or Daddy can rescue the object and place it once again within reach. I don't know that pushing things back too far is a tragedy. Probably just another variation of the game and a way to make sure we remember that he is the one in charge.

It took awhile for him to figure out the busy ball popper. He liked the balls and he liked the music that the popper made, but he wasn't so sure about the rest of it. Now he seems to find it amusing to play with it as intended. That doesn't stop him from seeing how many of the balls he can fit in his hand at a time or what sounds the balls make as he bangs them against various surfaces. After all, he is a baby.


Justin has had so much fun rearranging the presents. What could be more fun than pushing the boxes around from one side of the house to the other? He also enjoys getting on them, so we tried to make sure that the larger presents that might be fragile were put away. The ones that weren't so fragile were perfect for climbing!

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Happy Birthday Justin!

Today Justin turned one. He is not walking yet and I was SO sure he would be walking by now. (Of course I was sure he would walk before 10 months!) He CAN

walk a few steps and has on several occasions. He does it when he forgets to get down and crawl. When we try to get him to walk he will go limp noodle and laugh. Oh well. I suppose he will walk when he walks and I should be glad that he can't get into quite as much while he is still a crawler and a cruiser.

Justin's bday pictures turned out kind of like my second bday pictures. Rob took some video footage on the video camera that hopefully I will edit before too long and put up on youtube. In the meantime, here are some pictures.

Do you think I should see if the swiffer people want to use him in a commercial? He loves it! He loves cupcakes too. Not only can you crumble them, but you can eat them. Swiffer seems to be a pretty natural way to follow up his eating. :)

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Five Minute Flop

I am trying to get some Christmas baking done. Mind you we don't even have all of our stuff put away yet from our move, but that's okay. I have the baby gates up on the stairs and one blocking off the kitchen, so as long as I don't mind hearing Justin scream, I am able to safely cook.

I don't like him to be upset too long, so I thought I found a great recipe from Rachel Ray ( that claimed to be easy enough that it was classified as a kid's recipe. It was easy, but I agree with what Rob said when he tasted it. It just isn't fudge.

Guess I will just have to go with a more traditional recipe. Sorry Rachel Ray. Thumbs down is my review.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

We don't have the baby gates up on the stairs yet. We just put in a work order and it should be done this week. Until this weekend we have been keeping Justin from going up the stairs by putting the play yard in front of the stairs. We just block off the stairs and lock the wheels on the play yard and a baby gate of sorts is made. This weekend Justin decided that the times we forget to block off the stairs are few and far between and that he is much better off finding a way to get to them whenever he wants. He is a determined little kid! He has found a way and is getting more and more efficient each time he tries! Video kind of ends abruptly as I rescue Justin from falling.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Life in Tokyo

We are settling in to our new home in Tokyo. The movers are scheduled to come on Monday. Yay! Only onee more weekend without our things. Once we get everything it should make it feel more like home. It will be a lot of work to get it all put away though.
In the meantime, Rob is getting adjusted to his new job and Justin and I are trying to get into a routine. He will be one year old on the 22nd and he isn't walking yet. That is fine, but I would have bet money that he would be walking by now. He continues to cruise just as he has been for the past couple of months. Chicken Baby doesn't want to let go! He will stand up in the middle of the room and then decide he doens't want to chance it and gets back down and crawls. He has mastered racing up the stairs (gate isn't up yet) and climbing on top of things. How a baby who can't walk can climb the way he does, I'll never know. Here he is on the coffee table. He was very proud of himself.
Justin has become quite the "helper" with the laundry. He loves to take the clean laundry and throw it in with the dirty laundry. He also enjoys gathering up the socks and scattering them near and far. He just loves socks. Usually I don't mind, but when he attacks a pile of clothes I just folded... He is lucky he is so cute!
The weather has been warm. We haven't had to put on our winter coats yet. Justin has a hat and a pair of mittens, but he is yet to wear them outside of the house. I did try them on him. He didn't seem to mind. Perhaps that is because the TV was on. He has decided he likes Elmos's World on Sesame Street.
He is also working on feeding himself. It makes quite a mess which leads to needing to clean him up. He does not like that. Once he is clean he is off and running. He loves being naked. Rob says I shouldn't show people this picture because it will embarass Justin. I think that it will be okay for now. Don't plan on getting it enlarged and framed or anything.

I owe a lot of people e-mail. I haven't forgotten you! I have been busy trying to get to know the area and looking after Monster Baby.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Finally a post from Japan!

We have been in Japan now for a week and FINALLY I am getting around to posting on the blog. Of course as I begin I hear Monster Baby crying, so this may end up being done in pieces as I find little moments of time.

Even though the flight from Washington DC to Tokyo was shorter (only 14 hours) than the flight from China to Spokane, it seemed really long. Rob and Monster Baby had been feeling under the weather and weren't quite themselves when we made the journey. I have also determined that Northwest Airlines World Business Class is much better than United Business Class. Perhaps it is because on their international flights United also has a first class (NWA does not). I don't know, but if I ever have the option of which airlines I will fly, NWA will easily win even if the flight time increases by a couple of hours or a transfer.

Moving on... Our place in Tokyo is more than adequate. It is smaller than our place in Shenyang. We were spoiled there. Here our living room and dining room combined is about the same size as our living room in China. The kitchen is a lot smaller. Our bedrooms are bigger, but there are just the two of them. In China we had three bedrooms and used one as a family room. Our floor plan here is two floors and includes death trap stairs. I swear that whoever designed the stairs must have been trying to figure out how to trap children's arms and legs in little nooks and spaces. Having the baby gates put up will help immensely. The two balconies (one of dining room, one off of Justin's bedroom) are nice, though it wouldn't be bad to have the extra space INSIDE our apartment. It will take awhile to figure out how to arrange our space.

I took my picture out on the balcony to take a few pictures. Here is a picture of the building next to ours. There are three apartment buildings or "towers" and then some townhouses. I suppose the housing needs to be functional and someone thought that Scandinavian flair was being added. Instead I think they look like they were built out of legos. All they need is some color. In addition to balcony views, there is Monster Baby trying to escape. He loves being outside, even if it is just on the balcony. I think I will have to put his playpen out there in good weather. I can sit beside him and read while he plays.

It will take awhile to get adjusted. Very different from China (and much more expensive!). It will be a fine place. I think that Justin will really enjoy being able to play outside. Rob will get some different experience at the Embassy and not be on call or working overtime so much.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Justin's First Halloween

On Justin's first Halloween we were in Ohio visiting Justin's Uncle Ron, Aunt Ann, and cousins Scott and Missy. Missy got to take Justin around the cul-de-sac to trick or treat while Mom followed with the camera. :) Justin wasn't really sure what to make of it. He didn't dislike it, but he thought it was a bit odd. He found the other children pretty interesting. Probably his favorite part was pulling things out of the bucket after trick or treating. Poor kid didn't even get to eat very much of his candy. He did get to taste his first M&Ms and he is a big fan. Should I be surprised that my baby likes chocolate?
Justin had a good time in Ohio. He had the whole household trained to revolve around him. During our visit there he also:
-learned to crawl up the stairs
-tried going down stairs (saved from falls by multiple people)
-went to see his first marching bands
-discovered he likes banana yogurt (Mom doesn't so he might not have made that discovery for awhile)
-start clapping spontaneously and for games (like patty cake)
Justin and I met up with Rob in DC before heading out to Ohio. Poor Justin hadn't seen his dad (except over the computer) for about a month. When we landed at the airport, I started walking towards Rob. You should have seen Justin's face when he realized he was seeing his dad again. He was so excited. I bet the wheels were turning in that little head of his. What a coincidence that we would run into Daddy!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Justin, Justin, What Do You Read?

Here is Justin with one of his favorite books. He "read" it the entire time I was in the shower and still wasn't done with it. He was so cute that I decided to catch a cute clip. Of course by the time I get the camera and everything he was pretty much done. Oh well. He is still pretty cute.

Saturday, October 06, 2007


Recently I decided that Justin "needed" a costume for his first Halloween. I came to that realization in Target when he started staring at a tiger costume. I showed him some other costumes too, but the tiger one seemed to be what caught his eye. It was on sale too, how could I resist? The sad thing is that the previous week I purchased him a winter coat and spent less on it than I did on the tiger costume. I anticipate that he will get more use out of the coat than the costume. (Thus far he has worn the costume more often. He thinks that the tiger baby in the mirror is adorable. I agree!)

In all fairness, his winter coat was under $10. It is a Carter's brand from last year and I got it on clearance at Ross. Somehow I thought it was silly to spend over $30 on a winter coat he will wear one season when I could get one for less. No point in getting a Halloween costume for him after Halloween. Though he wouldn't know the difference... Does it really matter when the pictures of baby's first Halloween are taken as long as he believes they were taken on his first Halloween?

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

It's Been Too Long!
October 2, 2007

Okay, I know it has been absolutely forever since I have written. I have a million excuses including that my computer was packed in China and took four weeks to get to Idaho and when it DID arrive I was in Los Angeles. Couldn't I use a different computer you may ask? Well, yes. That is why I have a million excuses. Some are better than others. Rather than get into that though I will post some pictures and tell the tale of Noodles, Rob, and Monster Baby's move.

We left China and arrived in Idaho after many, many hours of travel. Justin is a good traveler, but even so he requires a lot of extra gear to haul around. I didn't get to enjoy business class the way I would like to since I was holding him and trying to keep him happy or asleep for the majority of the time. The only bad time he really had was when we sat on the plane in Beijing waiting to take off. We were on the plane for almost 2 hours before we finally got to get off the ground. Since they kept saying five more minutes or ten more minutes I kept the poor kid strapped into his car seat which he hated.

Spent a little bit of time in Idaho. My brother, Nathan, came with his family. The three small kids were like toys for Justin. What could entertain better than a 6 year old, 4 year old, and a 20 month old? My sister, Meredith, was also here. Full house! Sometimes it was a bit overwhelming for Justin. Sometimes it was overwhelming for me too!

Then it was off to California. Visited some of Rob's friends in the Oakland area over the weekend. It was fun for me to finally meet them and Justin was a hit with their kids. We got to see the Oscar Meyer weinermobile too. What vacation would be complete without that?

From there it was down to the Los Angeles area. We got to see Rob's mom, his dad and stepmother, and his brother. LA area means a lot of time in the car! We also got to see our friend June (we knew her in Shenyang, China) one evening. It was nice to see her and catch up a bit. Justin got to go on his first zoo trip with us and Grandma and Grandpa Weber. He liked flamingos, monkeys, ducks, giraffes, and the other kids.

My sister, Meredith, got down to her new place in Santa Barbara while we were in Southern California. She has made the move from Brooklyn, NY to sunny California to work on her PhD at UCSB. We were able to spend some time with her and get her better settled in. Justin got to see the ocean for the first time. He LOVED it! We had trouble keeping hom out of the water. He loved the sand in all it's many textures and loved crawling towards the waves. World's biggest bathtub!

From California it was back to Idaho. We went for a walk on the famous Coeur d'Alene floating boardwalk and then to the city park. Justin liked the swings.
Rob had to leave after a week to go back to work. Justin and I will catch up at the end of the month. We miss him, but Grandma and Grandpa's house sure beats a hotel room!

Friday, August 10, 2007

Ducks and Popsicles
The baby tub was just too small for my poor Monster Baby. The way he is always trying to crawl or stand in the big tub just wasn't working for me. He was all over the place and it took so much energy to keep him from going under or hurting himself that I couldn't wash him. Target is the best! I ordered this duck tub. It will be great for our travels this summer too. My baby has a comfy tub that can travel with him.
The tub really comes in handy after Daddy has a popsicle. Guess who insists on sharing? Yep, Monster Baby takes over the popsicle and makes a mess. He sure does love it. Can you say sugar? It probably feels good on his gums too. I like him chewing on the popsicle instead of my shoulder. I have bruises that make it look like I have been attacked by a wild animal. I swear if these newest teeth don't come in soon I am going to go crazy!

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Justin gets into EVERYTHING now that he is mobile. Nothing seems to be off limits if it is within his reach. He has even mastered the art of getting into the lower drawers. Fortunately, it takes awhile since they are heavy. That doesn't seem to be enough for my baby though. He has decided that since he is seven months old he should be walking. I have TRIED explaining to him that really he should be happy with crawling. He just won't listen. He tries to stand up in the middle of the room and is unsuccessful. He has decided that while continuing to practice this skill he should give in and use objects to pull up. He hasn't figured out that he needs to keep at least one hand holding on for support at all times since he hasn't figured out the whole balance thing yet. His quest for being upright has made my life much more difficult. I spend a lot of time being his spotter. Here is a picture of him two days before he turned seven months old. It was the second time he pulled himself up to the bed. He let go when he saw me with the camera. Oops! He fell to the floor with a very loud thud as the back of his head smacked down hard. I have accepted that it is a WHEN and not an IF that my Monster Baby will need stitches. I hope that it is not in China though. Not too much longer for him to hold out.

Here is also a (not so flattering) picture of me with Muzz in our matching pants/shorts.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Eating and Playing

Well, guess my baby has a bit to learn about eating. He has the wrong end of the spoon in his mouth. I guess that is the least of our eating problems for now. Food gets everywhere. He seems to take delight in spraying me with whatever it is he is eating. He looks so nice and clean in the before picture. That never lasts long.

Here is another pic of him playing with his toy train. It is the coolest toy. Rob and I enjoy it almost as much as he does.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Justin Cares for Baby Bob

Here is Monster Baby tending to his very own Baby Bob. Baby Bob makes a rattling sound when you shake him. I wonder if my baby would make a rattling noise if I shook him. Baby Bob sets a bad example of shakng babies. Other than that, Baby Bob is a good example for Justin. He doesn't cry or get into things he shouldn't. he doesn't seem to be reaching any milestones though...

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Crawling and Sitting

July 6, 2007
This is the date when I decided that Monster Baby could officially crawl. When he can get away from me and into the next room on his own there is no "maybe" about whether or not he is moving. Here are a couple of crawling clips, neither is very exciting. My baby does not cooperate.

July 12, 2007
This is the day I decided Monster Baby could sit. Funny since babies should sit well before they crawl. Sitting doesn't get him anywhere, so he really isn't interested in it. It took awhile to get him positioned. I had to get him sitting first. He kept arching his back and trying to get out of the sitting position until I collected a half dozen toys to distract him. I don't know what the official sitting criteria is, but today he managed to sit for over 10 minutes. In my book, that counts and isn't just a fluke. Note the empty coke bottle in the picture. It is one of his favorite toys.
Last (and probably least) is a clip that was made trying the quick capture feature on youtube. I will have to try again sometime and see if there was some sort of problem because the quality is REALLY poor. It does show off his cute laugh though.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Happy 4th of July
Poor Rob had to go to a work related 4th of July "party" today. Justin and I got to hang out at home. We did get some pictures of Dad and Justin in his 4th of July outfit. Aren't my guys cute?
I have some statistics from Justin's six month check up. He is 8.1 kg (about 18 pounds: 60th percentile) and 69.5 cm (about 27.5 inches: 80th percentile)
Rob and I both weigh more than we would like. We won't share those numbers with you though.