Thursday, May 14, 2009

Driving/Riding Like a Maniac

This past weekend we got Daniel a bicycle, a real one with training wheels. He has always loved them and made sure to point them out in every store we visit, but so far he had been unable to get the motion of the pedals down on his tricycles and instead would hold his feet up while I pushed him around. I finally decided that this summer would be the summer of learning to ride a bike.

Well, lo and behold, we put him on the bike and he took off. He still lifts his feet off the pedals all the time, so we are working on that, but on a flat surface he does great. We are also trying to teach him to watch where he is going. This is where get most of our laughs from. Uphill riding is a whole different story - that just hasn't come yet and super mom (that's me!) took Daniel down the hill on our road and didn't even think about him not being able to cycle back up so I ended up pushing him all the way back up. Never again - I take a dog leash now and loop it on the front of the bike and pull! We may look funny, but at least my back is still in one piece!

The first day was so funny because we didn't yet have a helmet etc. as we didn't think he would be able to take off. Well, he took off down the hill and I was running frantically behind him and I saw him start to lose control. At this point I yelled, "the grass, the grass, turn into the grass" and...

He actually listened to me the first time and turned into the grass and fell over. He was fine, but we immediately hopped into the car and bought a helmet, elbow pads and knee pads!!

We also held a birthday party at our house outside for my grandneice, Karmen. She turned 2 and is as cute as a button. Daniel drove her around in the jeep and they had a blast. Troy and the some of the other parents present gave 4-wheeler rides which was a big hit also.

Of course Daniel takes off with Karmen in the jeep and heads right down our sloped side yard and somehow Troy miraculously caught them before the jeep rammed the bottom and it was pretty funny because all the sudden we see Karmen stomping up the hill. Troy said she looked disgusted with Daniel and immediately got out of the jeep when it stopped and started up the hill. I'm thinking major drivers ed in the future!!

Enjoy the pictures!!

Getting ready to take off

Foot off the pedal, we're working on that!On my way down the hill, Mama running backwards like a silly goose to get a photo!
Chilling with Papa, waiting to be served cake and ice cream!

Driving Miss Daisy safely for the moment!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Another Busy Weekend and a Small Progress Report

Troy had a few days off this past weekend and we were able to enjoy four days together with Daniel.

Friday with my mom's help we planted eight tomato plants, lots of green beans (Daniel's favorite), onions and lettuce. I also planted 16 dianthus plants in my walkway garden to the front porch. I am trying to cover a long area and am slowly adding in each year, plus the plants come back up every year and bush out. It's my favorite flower and the only one I've found I can grow!

Sunday we went to Discoveroo, a family music festival, which is put on by the Virginia Discovery Museum. I won a family pass for 5 tickets so we took my sister in law, Amber and my nephew, Parker and made my brother in law Stephen pay his way! There were bands, tables with crafts, drawings, and a man on stilts, among other things.

The funniest part of the day was watching Daniel with the man on stilts. While my nephew Parker was the least bit perturbed by this abnormally tall man, Daniel hung back quite a bit, eyeing him. At one point all the children were running in between his legs, like going through a tunnel, and Daniel just kept hanging back. Before I go on you have to know that my son is fearless, (or was), then finally he got the nerve up. I wish I had the video camera because once his mind was made up, he took off, kicking in turbo speeds, went under the stilt walkers legs, and then kept right on going, never looking back. Troy and I were in stitches!! At any rate, the boys had the best time and so did we watching them!

I wanted to also give everyone a small update on Daniel's developmental progress. This will be short, but I wanted to list some things for myself as well as others.

Eating: Still doesn't eat much meat, will drink very small quantities of milk, doesn't think we should have meal time, especially when playing motorcycles or watching Elmo, stuck at 31 pounds.

Sleeping: Great – still needs a nap. He may not think so, but if not, somewhere between 4 and 6, in the words of Becky his evil twin arrives. He won't let us rock him completely to sleep anymore, but instead insists we come back to check on him after a few minutes and then waits for us. Is also trying the whole, "I need some juice" or "I need to go pee", stuff to avoid bedtime. Are they supposed to start that already?!

Speech: Daniel puts together paragraphs for us now, including very long sentences. We can hold a pretty normal conversation with him and he is now playing with his toys and having them talk, etc. Great imagination!

Attachment: Great! He does think it's okay to talk to strangers but he doesn't touch them and stays back far enough to keep an eye on us. The moment they make a move for him he bolts to us. Before you panic – we are standing very close by. For example – in the home store the other day he was about 5 feet in front of Troy and I and a lady came to the aisle and Daniel said to her that he was wearing a hat and she made to look at his hat closer and he bolted for me. A second example was after the Discoveroo event and he went walking a few feet ahead. Eventually he was walking with a group of teenagers not realizing it and suddenly he looked up and very quickly returned to my side. Again I was only feet behind him. Each time we explain that he needs to stay with Mommy and Papa and in our sight. Also, we always hold hands in streets and parking lots. Occasionally, like on these two occasions, there weren't many people around and we were within arms reach, so we let him explore his independence a little. We will however continue to work on the fact that not all strangers should be spoken to, especially if Mommy and Papa are not in sight.

This Morning: Daniel decided he didn't like the shirt I picked out for him to wear. He's never cared before but he ended up going to school in the blue pants I put on him and then he chose a bright orange shirt. I wonder if this is the first of many very interesting outfits!

I suppose that's about it. Hope every one is having a great week! I'll leave you with photos from the festival of Daniel and Parker. Pay particular attention to Daniel's distance from the man on stilts!