Monday, July 30, 2007

Hot Summer Day

Since it was approximately one million degrees here today and the humidity was so high that the air outside is virtually solid, there was no outdoor playing this evening after dinner, much to Jonathan's chagrin. But, I did allow him to enjoy a Slow-Melt Popsicle on the couch after he'd eaten what I deemed an acceptable amount of "real" food. A red Popsicle and a khaki couch most definitely are NOT a good idea when combined with a two year old, but today I thought, what the heck, we need some new living room furniture anyway. He actually didn't make too big of a mess, surprisingly, so I guess Ashley Furniture will still have to wait a bit...

Here is J-man enjoying his treat. I can now actually tell him to look at the camera and say cheese. It's just that I have approximately one nanosecond before he turns away:

This next one is just after he'd held still for the aforementioned nanosecond. He wanted to touch the lens with red Popsicle hand. Definitely NOT a good idea as I do not want a new camera, at least not at the moment...

And, lastly, Jonathan and Alice, who was trying to sleep. She is actually quite deaf so she can't hear Jonathan screeching beside her, but he constantly wants to "tosh" her, so she's not able to get a lot of rest while he is around, despite her diminished hearing:

And I'll end with a little tidbit. As Jonathan and I drive home after work/school each evening, we chat about the day. Bryan is often a topic of conversation. Jonathan's current favorite question is "(name of person) doing?" Today that was Daddy. When I answered "Daddy? I don't know? What IS Daddy doing?," Jonathan replied "Daddy golf." Interesting as Daddy SAID he was going to work this morning. I called Bryan to tell him Jonathan ratted him out and while I had Bryan on the phone I asked Jonathan to tell me what Daddy was doing, totally thinking he would repeat what he'd said earlier. But no, apparently my all too tricky husband has already infiltrated my sweet baby boy's thought process because Jonathan replied "Daddy working."

I am doomed.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Disaster Averted!

Some of you know me in real life and know that one of the happiest things to me is a Jimmy Buffett concert. I have been numerous times and it is simply the highlight of my summer. For those poor, unfortunate, unfamiliar souls, Jimmy puts his tickets on sale in March of each year, which means a looooong wait until the actual concert, which, for me, is usually until July or August.

This year, the Cincinnati concert is July 26 (tomorrow). As soon as the 2007 tour dates were announced in February of this year, I contacted my mother who agreed, as she did last year, to come up and keep Jonathan while Bryan and I enjoyed a night as Parrotheads. Of course, we had no way to know at the time that my youngest sister would have to have surgery today. Luckily, everything is OK--she had to have an ovary and her appendix removed. Understandably, this left my mother in a position where she felt like she needed to stay in WV to take care of her. I totally see where she is coming from and completely agree with her decision, although I felt a bit put out when I was first informed of her cancellation earlier this evening. :)

Anyway, this left Bryan and I in a unique position. We would normally turn to his mother, who is completely awesome and pretty much available at a moment's notice. Unfortunately, she and Bryan's dad are vacationing this week in Tennessee. I considered calling her and begging her to come home, but luckily we had formulated a back-up plan this past Sunday when we realized something like this could arise. I am therefore dedicating this blog to our friends Amber and Kevin who so graciously agreed to watch Jonathan overnight so we could avoid taking him to his first Buffett concert. They are truly saints in our eyes and I hope that their experience with Jonathan will not make them foreclose the possibility of having a second baby (they have a completely adorable thirteen month little girl!) Thanks a million you guys and we are more grateful than you know!!

Saturday, July 21, 2007

New Look!

In case you haven't already noticed, I have a new header for my blog!! And it's all thanks to Janice who, in case you don't already know, is a really cool mommy to two of the most beautiful children you will ever see! She totally surprised me by making this blog out of some of Jonathan's two year old pictures. It was such an incredibly nice gesture that I got teared up when I opened my email.

Thank you Janice for totally making my day!!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

My Budding Photographer

So some of you out there are learning how to use your fancy-schmancy Canon Rebels. Well, apparently y'all need to take a photography lesson from my son, who, as you will see below, is obviously a prodigy...

Bryan and I giving Jonathan his medicine:

Jonathan's self portrait (one of many):

A scary photo, hopefully not a preview into the sure to be teenage angst years:

And a picture of our older chihuahua, Alice. She, for some reason, is one of Jonathan's favorite subjects:

Bryan and I have had entirely too much fun looking at his pictures, so much so that we are going to take a collection of the "best" ones and make them into one of those photo books. So watch out everyone if you are our our Christmas list this year!!!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Jonathan's Two Year Old Pictures

People always say that Louisville is a small town where everyone knows everyone else. I did not believe that for a long time--how can a city with a metropolitan population of well over half a million people be considered "small town"? However, I am starting to discover that it is the case.

I have lived in Louisville since 1996, moving here right after graduating from high school to go to college. In 1997, I took a job at a restaurant called the Bristol Bar and Grille as a hostess (in Kentucky, you have to be twenty and a day before you can be a server in a restaurant that serves liquor, thus my options were hostess or bus-person. I chose the former). I worked with some really awesome people, one of whom was named Jon. The turnover rate being what it is in the restaurant industry, Jon left after we'd worked together about six months.

So life obviously went on from there. Flash forward to October of 2005. Jonathan's school, like many in the area, has a photographer come in a few times a year to take pictures of the kids. I took Jonathan to have his pictures made first thing in the morning as he was prone to spit up at any moment during that period in his life. Imagine my surprise when I saw that Jon was the photographer. He looked exactly the same and apparently so do I as he and I immediately recognized each other. Turns out he and his wife own a photography company that handles over 50 day cares and preschools in the area. As you can see from my previous post (see "Picture Success"), the results are quite good.

Last year, I had Jonathan's one year pictures done at Sears on his actual birthday. They turned out pretty good, but I wanted something a bit more artistic for this year. I called Jon to see if he could do them. I had already taken off work on Jonathan's birthday and Jon was available then, so we met in Cherokee Park and shot photos for about an hour. Jonathan, true to form, was shy for about three seconds and then let his true self come out. I was thrilled with the pictures as I truly feel like they captured his personality.

This first one demonstrates one of the beautiful things about two-year-olds--they can actually follow directions!! We had Jonathan run away and then run back to us:

Jonathan really liked to run to me and I love this picture (despite my pasty white legs) because Jonathan just looks so happy:

And again, another example of Jonathan's new ability to take direction. Jon told him to wait behind the tree and he would "come get him":

This last one was completely spontaneous and turned out pretty awesome. Jon has in incredible knack for photographing young children:

It was hard to pick which ones I wanted, so it's nice that he gave me all of them on CD so I wouldn't live to later regret my print purchases!

Unrelated, thank you to everyone who sent well-wishes on my new job prospect. I have since undergone a telephone and an in-person interview, both of which I feel went well. I hope to know something this week and will, of course, keep everyone posted. Hope all of you had a great weekend!!

Thursday, July 12, 2007

My Sweet Hubby

The digital camera Jonathan got for his birthday came with this software called PhotoShow Circle. I have no interest in that type of thing, but Bryan does and has been fooling around with it, figuring out how it works. Apparently, it is fairly easy to make a photo show using it and Bryan surprised me this morning via an email link to my work address with the following video. Please ignore the fact that I look horrendous in most of the photos!!

Needless to say, I started out the day needing a tissue...

Monday, July 9, 2007

Sheer Exhaustion... the only way I can express how I still feel after the birthday party on Saturday. In just a few short hours, my house was inundated with people, food and enough toys to start a daycare. Not that we were lacking, but now we have a play house, a Cozy Coupe (which I always wanted as a child and never received), a really cool digital camera (definitely not as nice as yours, Janice) and a plethora of other items, most of them Thomas. He received so many new things that I can't even begin to imagine how I will answer the "What does Jonathan want for Christmas?" questions that I will be peppered with starting around October.

After last year's party, I learned that I needed to make things as simple as possible so I didn't spend the whole party in the kitchen. So, I did not cook any of the food but for two dips (taco and buffalo chicken) and, of course, I made the cake. Bryan has a client who very generously gave us a deal on food. We went casual--beef brisket, pork BBQ, baked beans, that type of thing. The food was awesome and all I had to do to clean up was throw everything away. Very happy. I was very pleased with how the cake turned out. The only thing I didn't love was that I ran out of room to write his name, but Bryan assured me that everyone would know who the cake was for anyway.

I was so busy running around that I didn't take any pictures myself. Fortunately, my mother and mother in law did and I was very happy that they are finally in the digital era as both were using film up until about six months ago. The pictures are not the best, but they capture the gist of the party.

This is Jonathan opening gifts. For some reason, my dad was totally into the gift opening, so much so that he orchestrated the whole thing and I pretty much missed the gifts. Oh, well.

This next one is Jonathan on his new bike. Our neighbor has a motorcycle and so Jonathan wanted one, too. I told my dad this and he actually WENT SHOPPING (which is completely out of character for him) and picked this bike. He even, according to my mother, paid extra for the Harley Davidson edition. If he could have found a black leather jacket small enough to fit J-man, he totally would have bought it.

I wish I could say that Jonathan loved the cake, but he really could have cared less. Everyone else liked it, though, so I guess that's OK.

And here's Jonathan among the carnage that used to be my living room:

The party was definitely a success. Unfortunately, Bryan and I were completely pooped after it was over. Our last guests left around ten p.m. and, after the teeniest bit of wine, we went to bed. Jonathan went to bed at 8:30, one hour later than normal, which would lead one to think that he would sleep in on Sunday. Did he? No, he did not; in fact, he got up around 30 minutes earlier than normal, making for a very cranky Jonathan all morning. He napped for three hours before Bryan woke him up. He finally wore us down with his constant requests to play in the sprinkler around five thirty last night (it was SO hot during the day). Big surprise that it's Thomas, huh?

He would run through the sprinkler and then return to his house, the whole time dripping wet and giggling infectiously. It was a lot of fun to watch:

So in a flash, the whole birthday weekend was over. Today, Jonathan had his first day in the two-year old room at school and they tell me he did great. I love watching him grow up, but I definitely had tears in my eyes this morning as I thought about him in the two year old room!

Monday, July 2, 2007

Happy Second Birthday Baby Boy!!

It is so hard for me to conceptualize that two years have passed since Jonathan was born. When else can one pinpoint the exact time their life changed forever? I have been fortunate to have some incredible things happen in my life, but on July 2, 2005 at 2:43 p.m. at Norton Suburban Hospital in Louisville, Kentucky, Jonathan Davis Fantoni was born and it was nothing short of amazing. At that exact moment, my entire life changed direction and I could not have hoped for it to have been better.

Weighing in at a whopping five pounds, thirteen ounces and measuring eighteen inches, Jonathan was impatient to arrive into the world as he made his entrance seventeen days ahead of schedule. That lack of patience continues with us today...

After less than forty-eight hours in the hospital, they actually let Bryan and I drive away from the hospital WITH THE BABY on July 4. Seriously, what where the doctors and nurses thinking? I felt nothing short of freaked out, particularly when my mom and dad headed back to WV later that afternoon, leaving Bryan and I alone WITH THE BABY. It seemed so odd at the time that this was the start of us not just as a couple but as a family. Here is a picture of us taken during our first week as new parents:

The last two years have passed in an unbelievable whirlwind, filled with all of Jonathan's firsts: bath, smile, tooth, words, steps. At each point along the way, I am amazed at how is morphing from an infant to a baby to a little boy. I constantly think it would be impossible for it to get better, but then it does and I am amazed all all over again. The baby I carried with me for (not quite) nine months now runs every where we go, is always sticky and picks up new words like "herpes" from television commercials. It is interesting to me how watching your child grow up makes you feel happy, sad, sentiment and pride all at the same time.

Here are some of my favorite pictures from the last two years. This first one is one of the first smiles I was able to catch on film. He was about three and a half months at the time:

This was his first Easter. I just love the expression on his face here:

Here is the first time he used the baby pool, the beginning of what would become "nakey outdoor bath time":

Happy as a clam at almost 14 months:

And the results of a Daddy and son bath time collaboration:

It seems like just yesterday that he needed us to do everything for him, but now Jonathan is a boisterous little boy!

And today, on the day of his second birthday:

So Happy Birthday Jonathan!! May you continue to grow and thrive and develop into one of the most amazing people I have ever met. May your life be filled with sunshine and happiness. May you formulate dreams and see them fulfilled. And may you live your life with the knowledge that your mother loves you with all of her heart.

Sunday, July 1, 2007

Our Last Weekend with a One Year Old!

As the countdown to the terrible twos is almost at an end, let me recount the wonderful weekend we had with Jonathan.

Said weekend actually started WITHOUT Jonathan. Bryan's mom picks him up from school one day a week and this week it was Friday. Nana just so happened to think Jonathan was having such a fun time at her house that it would be nice to continue his visit until Saturday morning. No complaints were heard at my house and Bryan and I were able to enjoy a nice dinner and cocktails with our friends Jeff and Kim, who were also sans baby. Even better was the fact that I was able to obtain almost ten hours of uninterrupted sleep. It was pure bliss!

Saturday morning we picked Jonathan up and did the usual--lunch, nap, playtime, bath. He got a birthday haircut late in the day and we went to another couple's house for dinner. Joe and Cindy are one of our best couple friends and they have two adorable little girls, Caroline who is five and Lily who will be four this fall. Cindy had a great idea to let the kids play with water balloons so Jonathan went over decked out in his water wear. None of the three kids had ever played with water balloons before, but it was definitely a hit! And, for the record, I normally do not try to make my kid look like a dork but his water shoes gave him a blister the day before so socks were a necessity last night...

Jonathan has been going over to Joe and Cindy's for dinner since before he was born, so he has always been comfortable there. We feed the kids dinner and put them to bed (Jonathan even has his own room where they keep a pack and play set up for him to sleep in) and then the adults have dinner. Last night, the girls wanted to watch a movie and eat popcorn before they went to bed. It was early enough that Jonathan was able to join in. Aren't the three of them adorable?

Today we took Jonathan to A Day Out with Thomas at the Kentucky Railway Museum in New Haven, Kentucky. It's about an hour's drive away from Louisville, requiring me to leave the house before 7:00 am this morning in order to get there in time for our 9:00 a.m train ride (the lines are really long so they say to get there an hour before departure time). Before I was a mother, I SWORE my child would not be one of those character-obsessed children who liked Thomas, Dora or the like. However, Jonathan was less than one year old when he developed a love of the Wiggles and now he is full blown into Thomas. In a frighteningly short period of time, we have accumulated a Thomas hat, t-shirt, dinnerware set, books and DVDs. This is sure to get worse over the next week as Jonathan's birthday party is July 7. One of the girls at work said she was the same way but now, post-Thomas, she says her son just gets so happy about Thomas-themed merchandise that she has gotten over her previous distate.

Here is Jonathan playing at the train tables. I was so proud of him because it was REALLY crowded and he actually did a nice job sharing:

The trip included a 25 minute train ride, which Jonathan, as I suspected, absolutely loved. Here he is in his seat before the ride started. Note the Thomas hat that he insisted I purchase pretty much the second we got out of the car:

And finally, here is a picture of Jonathan in a coal engine. It is not operational but they allowed kids to get in it with the conductor and ring the bell. It totally looks like he was up there by himself, but his cousin Aiden and Nana were up there, too:

I am completely pooped but with a million chores to do, it will be a bit before I get to bed. Stay tuned for a birthday post in honor of my favorite little guy tomorrow...