Thursday, September 26, 2013

And there you have it...

He was supposed to be a secret...

...until the wind blew his sheet away 24 hours early.

Howdy, Folks!

Like the legend of the phoenix, Big Tex has risen from the ashes...

...with a booty

He will be officially unshrouded unveiled tomorrow afternoon. 

Friday, September 20, 2013

Picture Day...

The best thing about picture day?  This note that went home the day before:

If banner will be here tomorrow for breakfast, please do not put on
his picture day clothes!  Its yogurt day tomorrow!  Thanks.

Because MY child usually looks like this after meals:

Do you see the hummus in his hair?  Because...yeah.  He's a mess.

As are our walls?  The kid leaves his mark:

Thank goodness for the Magic Eraser.

But I digress. 

The decision to cut Banner's hair was made AFTER picture day.  At the time, I was all "Oh my babaaaaay!" about his curls, and now I'm like, "OMG, my kid looked like a redneck" in his very first school pictures.


A least the images are memorable.  


Not that I find them unadorable or anything.  I love my little trike-riding mullet baby.

And, yes.  I just used unadorable in a sentence.  It is like a total legit word now.  Just like selfie, derp and FOMO.

In fact, the only way Banner could have possibly been any cuter is if he had been covered in yogurt.  Duh.

I'm also fascinated by the fall backdrop and fake leaves, because I spent TWO DAYS stressing over what color background to use.  You had to preselect it on the form when giving permission to let the photographers photograph your child.  The choices ranged from blue to purple to white.  I finally chose gray because I thought blue eyes + blue shirt + blue background was overkill.  And then the proofs came back and were all autumn leaves and clouds floating in the sky.  Not a single gray background in the lot.

I am assuming this is a message from the universe to me to stop over thinking things that don't really matter.  

(Obviously, the universe has never met me.  I spent twenty minutes this morning rewording a single sentence in an email to a coworker about coffee.)

Plus, it isn't like I didn't buy them all.  Because (again) MY BABAAAAAAY! I can't even delete the bad or blurry pictures of him on my iPhone.  True story.

A picture is worth a thousand words...or stories.

One reason I scan in many of Banner's art projects is because it reminds me of what he was learning at school that week.  Yeah, some of them aren't all that impressive are best described as scribbles, but that isn't the point.  Each "masterpiece" represents a new word or experience in the life of my son.  

Take "yellow" for example.  That was the week he started saying "el-o".

And I can't BEGIN to tell you the leaps and bounds made in Banner's vocabulary since they started learning the alphabet.  It has been incredible.

During A week, he learned the word "apple".  Except when he says it, it is more like "ap-pool".  He took an armadillo and an alligator for show-and-tell that week.  Thank goodness Amy and William gave Banner all their beanie babies back when I was pregnant.  Without them, there would be much more scrambling on my end to come up with something letter appropriate for him to take to school each week.

The letter B was when he rediscovered a stuffed bear that his Gran had given him back around the time he was born.  He now insists on sleeping with him every night and has named him "RWAR". 

The letter C brought us our first documented example of Banner's ability to recognize letters unprompted.  I drive a GMC, and during C week, Banner marched right out into the garage, pointed at the C in G-M-C, and proudly declared "Ceeeeee".

Obviously, the kid is brilliant and destined for Harvard.

C is for CIRCLES


D week, he became re-obsessed with his dogs, and started carrying around his stuffed puppy that a friend of mine from high school sent me when he was born.  "Pup-eee" also sleeps in the crib with Wubby and RWAR.  It is getting crowded in there.

E was all about elephants and ELMO.  He actually tried to steal an Elmo toy from school at the end of the week.  And I use the word "steal" loosely, because he saw me, ran over to the table, picked up the Elmo and his water, walked to the door and said, "buh-bye".  He was not happy at all when he learned that Elmo had to stay behind.  

Leaving school that day was an exercise in futility.  We would get halfway down the hall before he'd turned around abruptly and start sobbing "Elmo" over and over again.  He even tried running back to his classroom.  I felt particularly bad for one of the infant room teachers who commented on Banner's Demarcus Ware jersey on our way out.  She thought she had said something to upset Banner, but he had just remembered for the 100th time that we were leaving Elmo behind and was devastated.  I ended up having to pick Banner up and carry him to the car.  We were hysterical about Elmo on and off for the rest of the evening.  I'm pretty sure the definition of pathetic is listening to your toddler cry themselves to sleep in their crib over their lack of Elmo.  It was like he lost his best friend.

Two days later, after hearing about nothing but Elmo ALL weekend, Trevor decided he couldn't take it anymore, and surprised Banner with his very first Elmo and Grover.  So, for now, all is right and well with the world.  Apparently, I was unaware that this is the age when kids start obsessing over Elmo.  He has never seen Sesame Street, though, so I thought he was immune.  Boy, was I wrong.  Elmo is like a disease that toddlers catch when you are least expecting it.

Although, it is cute to watch Banner proudly introduce his Elmo and Grover to everyone who comes over.  He is so proud.

This week is F week.  Banner is learning about fish, fruit, frogs AND FOOTBALL.  Trevor is thrilled.  Lord help the rest of us.

As a side note, I find it rather humorous that Banner knows what noise a fish makes but has no idea what a donkey, elephant or fox says.  

20 letters to go.  Assuming Banner doesn't get moved up to the two's early, we should finish right around his second birthday.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Because I woke Trevor up to see it JUST to make sure I wasn't dreaming...

THIS might be my favorite local news story in years. 
Watch the video.  You won't be disappointed.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013


About a month ago (August 11th), a family friend invited Banner over to see his trains.  He is a collector, and had set the tracks all over his living room, den and entrance hall for his grandkids (who had been visiting in July).
Banner was ENTRALLED.  We stayed more than an hour, which shocked me because Banner's attention span is usually closer to seven minutes.  He loved watching the "choo-choos" speed by, and helping to push the whistle button on the remote control.  Basically, he was in little boy heaven. 
Banner was even content to sit back and watch (instead of chasing after the trains and trying to pick them up).  Quite frankly, I was expecting more de-railings by Toddler Godzilla, but was pleasantly surprised by my (then) 19 month old's restraint.  He was a very good boy.
Here are some of my favorite pictures from the evening:


I have a feeling Thomas the Train and a trip to the new (location of) Museum of the American Railroad in Frisco are in our future.

Monday, September 09, 2013

It was kind of an eventful weekend...

At least by our standards.  And, remember, we already had ALL THIS on the schedule for Saturday.  It is sort of amazing we are still functioning.  ;P

It all started with Banner's first shiner on Friday afternoon.  The little guy was sprinting around his classroom at school (like he does), when he tripped, fell forward and hit his head HARD on the corner of the baby doll crib.  Ebony said she had never heard him scream so loud or so hard, and it took a long time for him to calm down afterwards.

Of course, when they called me at work, I assumed it was just another run-of-the-mill bump on the head, and joked that "at least it wasn't picture day".  That's when Ebony told me that they were monitoring Banner for signs of a concussion and maybe I should try to pick him up early because his head probably hurt.

Oops.  Yep, just call me a$$hat parent of the year.

To be on the safe side, Trevor and I called around and researched the signs of a concussion in a toddler, and even woke the little guy up before turning in Friday evening.  Thank goodness, he showed no symptoms, and was more or less his usual happy self (who just happened to be walking more carefully until he got his confidence back) by Saturday morning:

The exception to the happy baby rule was, of course, when I interrupted his dinner date with an avocado on Friday to document the goose egg above his left eyebrow.  The boy takes eating very seriously:

Give me back my avocado and no one gets hurt.

On Saturday morning, as you may remember, Trevor had a haircut.  He wanted Banner to go along to watch so - when the time came for him to get a trim - he'd be more prepared for the experience.

I'm not sure Banner had any clue what daddy was doing, and was just happy that the salon had a toy basket full of new and exciting things.

And, well, before I knew it, we decided to - GASP! - let Trevor's hair guy, Adam, give Banner a trim.  Maybe it was because Banner's mullet was an extra special mess Saturday morning.  Maybe it was Halley's comment to Trevor asking if we bought Banner a cap in Wyoming to cover up his rat tail.  Or maybe it was simply because Saturday would have been Moo's 103rd birthday.  I'm not really sure what made me change my mind, but Trevor made sure Adam got it done before I could think about it for very long.

The before:

The during:

The after:

Banner also got his first lollipop, which then directly lead to his getting his first donut hole.  Because it didn't take long to realize that toddlers and lollipops don't mix (there was red, sticky drool EVERYWHERE in a matter of seconds).  But Banner wasn't about to let that lollipop go without a fight.  So, we had to quickly figure out some sort of fair trade compromise if we wanted to avoid an epic meltdown in the hair salon. 

Hence, the donut hole.  As someone who has an irrational fear of donuts (they make my teeth hurt), it bothered me much, much more than it did Trevor (who considers donuts to be some sort of weird rite of passage).  Luckily, I didn't have to watch...mainly because I blinked and the donut had disappeared down my son's pie hole.  I don't even think he chewed.  I guess my phobias aren't genetic after all.

And now Banner officially looks like a little boy.  Albeit, little boy with a very, very round head and a bruise over his left eye.  Like Charlie Brown but different:

Who is that BIG boy?

The other big "first" of the weekend, was the big car seat flip.  Apparently, Banner had some sort of growth spurt in August, because his head wasn't an inch below the headrest in rear facing mode, but flush. 


So, having exceeded the rear facing height maximum, we made the switch.  Banner is officially a big boy now:

One last shot facing backwards in daddy's car.

Ironically, the novelty of seeing where he is going has already worn off.  In fact, everything about forward facing seems to annoy Banner:  he doesn't want us looking at him, his feet dangle off the end, it is harder to take off his shoes, daddy doesn't like it when he plays with the doorknob, he can't kick the seat, etc.

Being 20 months is just SO HARD.

(Although the DEATH STARES we get from Banner glaring at us in the rearview mirror are pretty humorous.  And slightly terrifying.)

At least, I can now capture shots like this:

Sweet, sleepy baby.

Other than that, though, the weekend was pretty low key.  Rachel DID come over and we ordered Taco Joint and watched the latest interpretation of The Great Gatsby (because I know you were waiting on pins and needles...).  And then Sunday happened and was completely all-consumed by football.

I don't know why the return to football ALL THE TIME is so shocking this year.  I've been with Trevor for a third of my life.  I should be used to this by now.  Maybe it was because the Cowboys didn't make the playoffs last year, so I had more time "off"?

(I say "off" because Trevor will watch anything sport-like on TV.  He is an equal opportunity competition junkie.  Curling?  Beach volleyball?  DIII field hockey?  He's in.)

Whatever it is, all you football lovers out there will be happy to know that Uncle Adam taught Banner "the stance" last night.  Coming to a defensive line near you:

Hut, hut!

Banner is also a HUGE fan of Carrie Underwood's interpretation of the Sunday Night Football song.  Personally, I preferred Faith Hill's, but Carrie made Banner shake his little jersey-clad booty in a way I didn't think possible while wearing footie PJs.  Clearly, Carrie is a hit with the under two demographic. 

Until next time...