Archive for May, 2022

March was for savoring the quietude of maternity leave, but April was for finding a new family groove as I returned to the office (can’t say we’ve quite found that groove, but we’re getting there day by day).

Goodness, I dreaded saying good-bye to my babies after seven months of full-time momming…  Juliette and I had a good cry in her bed on Sunday night as I tucked her in, which I think was therapeutic for us both; by the time I had to leave the next morning for my first day back, she was cheering me on with, “Don’t miss your bus, Mama!  And I love your shoes!”  Isaac went with the flow and loved hanging out with Nancy that first week – I think he hardly missed me, but was still awfully happy to land back in my arms at the end of the day.

Shane’s parents came out to visit and watch the kiddos during my second week back at work (the daycare waiting game is no joke!), and both kids ate up the extra attention.  Juliette played a song for them on her keyboard and Denny about fell out of his chair as he gushed over her talent.  #1 fan, no doubt.

Isaac took to Grandma and Grandpa right away – he loved sitting in Pat’s lap and pulling on Denny’s beard.

Grandma is the BEST baking buddy.

Juliette wowed Grandpa with her batting skills…

And Isaac did what he does best, which is look cute.

We missed them the minute they left – good-bye felt especially hard this time around, as we know Isaac will be so much different next time they seem him and Juliette becomes more emotionally attached to her grandparents with each visit.  “It’s just so hard that they live so far away!”, Juliette cried as they hit the road that morning.  I know, kiddo, I know!

Once Denny and Pat left and we’d dried our tears, I offered to take Juliette out for a little pick-me-up.  It was the last day of her Spring Break, so I thought we were due for an adventure – I gave her a handful of options and she chose a visit to the Space Needle.

We let Isaac tag along because Shane had to work, and because like I mentioned, HE’S CUTE.

There was an hour-long wait to go to the top of the Needle, so we passed some time at the Seattle Center playground.

Baby boy really likes the swing.

And then, it was time!

I haven’t been to the top of the Space Needle since they replaced their wire mesh fencing with these panes of floor-to-ceiling glass, and wowsers!  It’s pretty remarkable, stepping off the elevators to an obstruction-free panoramic view of the Sound on a sky-blue day.

Don’t lean back, Juliette!  That’s some thick glass, but still…makes my stomach flip.

Chilling on the glass floor…

And our final descent…  Our Spring Break mini-adventure was a total hit with both kids – such a stunner of a day.

We celebrated Easter morning at home, with bunny ears in bed and goody baskets and the church service streaming while we ate our cinnamon rolls.

Juliette grabbed these ears from the Target dollar bin and was so excited to matchy-match her brother.  He really is like the best-ever baby doll sometimes.

Isaac can’t be trusted with hard-boiled Easter eggs, or with jelly bean-filled plastic eggs for that matter, so squeakers it is!  These have been the gift that keep on giving.

We put the finishing touches on our Easter treats and then headed over to the Rusts for Sunday brunch.

Hat buddies!

Juliette really wanted to do an egg hunt and the older boys were so sweet to indulge her and join the fun.

Ok, let’s be honest – the thirteen year-old was totally into it.

The photos we’ve taken on these steps!  So many memories with this bunch.

Buddy, I promise not to make you wear this headband again (for another 11 months), but lemme tell you…it looks so, so good on you.

And Mama-Jules pics, because hey!  I wore something other than leggings on a weekend.

My mom arrived on Easter evening to watch Isaac for week 3 (and 4, 5, 6…).  Again, he was a friendly little dude and settled right into Grandma’s arms.

There were a handful of days when Isaac ran her a little ragged (he’s not a dream all the time), but she took it in stride and loved on him throughout the short naps and the bouts of fussiness.  Plus, the extra set of hands in the kitchen to cook and clean up was invaluable as I adjusted to my new work day.  Shane and I were so, so thankful for her help.

In hindsight we should have done this more often during her time here, but on one precious evening we handed all kid duties to Shane and headed out for a cocktail.  We earned it.

April also saw the start of Spring soccer, and Isaac and I have found the lawn at Alki Playfields to be a perfect place to pass a Sunday afternoon.

Juliette gives it all she has every time, zipping up and down the field with flushed cheeks and tired legs.  Girl’s got heart.

And softball season continues!  Our weekends are a myriad of sporting events, and I love it.

Isaac loves it, too.

April evenings were spent walking around the neighborhood, savoring that fleeting season when the cherry blossoms and the tulips burst with peak color.

Our neighbor, Miss Pat, has an amazing collection of tulips – much as I’d love to make it up to Skagit Valley in the Spring, this suffices.

Isaac had a doctor’s appointment recently where a nurse told me that he had a “very mature face” (like an old man, I believe she meant?), and I see it here.  Maybe it’s the pre-bedtime sleepy lines under his eyes!

Juliette bikes around the block while we walk, and we cross paths every now and then.

One of my most favorite cherry blossom trees…

And a Friday morning walk with Nancy for more blossom viewing.

April felt busy as I transitioned to a new work-life balance, but there was still plenty of home time, plenty of hanging out in the yard…

Lounging on the sofa…


And lazy weekends with late wake-ups (Isaac, take a memo from your sister!).

Onto May – the joy in the juggling act continues.

Goodness, month 8 ran the gamut.  So many developmental changes for this boy that alternately made him giddy with excitement and disastrously exhausted.  

Most notably, by the end of April Zig-Zag (new nickname courtesy of the Rusts) was on the move!  He started getting up onto his hands and knees during playtime and quickly figured out how to crawl…backwards.  He’d perch for a moment with his butt in the air, rocking back and forth like a race car revving his engine at the starting line, and then take off toward whatever object he had in sight, ending up two feet farther away from it than where he started.  He found this very frustrating.  But as a spectator, it was maybe a tiny bit amusing?

This was peak frustration.

Get it, Buddy!

He started unleashing new levels of exuberance in the bathtub, getting out all that pent-up pre-crawling energy by splashing like a madman.  He’d flail with abandon and then blink at me in his almost-empty tub with water droplets clinging to his eyelashes, like “what just happened?!”.

Four new teeth broke through last month and now he has top chompers to match those two bottom chicklets he’s had since January.  I love this toothy grin!  He spent a week constantly grinding his top and bottom teeth together as he made sense of his new mouth (that sound was nails on a chalkboard to me!), but he’s eased up and settled in.

There was a week in early April when Isaac slept a solid 12 hours two nights in a row.  Such a thoughtful return-to-work gift from my boy!  We were on the right sleep track.  And then he fell back into waking up around 3am to eat, which was fine, but then it was midnight and 3am, which was less fine, and then it was sometimes 10pm and midnight and 2am and then up for the day 5:00 and THAT WAS NOT OK.  He slept better as a newborn than he did as an eight month old.  We’re getting back on track and I’m optimistically going to chalk that up to a short-lived sleep regression, but crap, that was rough.

On the flipside, we made progress on the nap front and he now goes down for his daytime dozes with hardly a peep.  For the record, I do put him in his crib.  Most days.

Ah, and the post-nap pickup!  My favorite.  Once awake, he pops up on his hands and knees (and recently started sitting up on his own) and jabbers until one of us scoops him up.

Too much, this kid!

*Yes, he was clearly verging on a jailbreak – his crib has since been lowered.

Other random tidbits…

He still loves walks and becomes wonderfully zen once strapped into his stroller.

Unless that walk is to pick up sister from school, in which case he quickly goes from zen to giddy.

His favorite toy is this xylophone – at first because he loved to chew on the mallet, but then because he realized it’s LOUD if he hits it hard enough.

He also loves a good Rubick’s Cube.

Lazy Saturday mornings, when I get to drop him in bed with Juliette once she wakes up, are THE BEST.

Lazy Saturday afternoons, when we get to nap together (a rare treat, but I can occasionally finagle it!) are a close second.

Obligatory chair pics!

The sweetest toes that wiggle and stretch as he settles into nursing.

Little Rascal hair.

And oh, BABY BOY…  I miss the bejeezus out of you while I’m at work, but you make coming home so much fun.

Isaac, how you’ve changed in just the two weeks since your 8-month birthday!  I can hardly keep up.  Literally. (Spoiler alert – he’s mastered the forward crawl!)