Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter Weekend

Nonnie Shanny bought Kaden a brand new shirt for Easter so I HAD to snap a few pictures in our backyard before going to church.
Kaden in his Easter attire
taking time to smell the flowers

As much as I wanted a decent family photo this weekend, it just wasn't in the cards for the
Benjamin Dow family. We attempted a couple before going to church on Saturday night
(a new tradition that I rather enjoyed!) and then again on Easter Sunday before lunch.

Eyes closed, blurry, someone not looking, the fake smile, someone having a meltdown
(not naming names), a "nuk" in the mouth, bad hair...
OR a nice combination of the above listed.

THIS is the best we could do this year.

great Kaden smile... but Ben's eyes are closed...
Where do we begin?!  (Kaden, I expect better next year.)
Marginally better, but Ben's eyes are almost closed & Kaden was on the verge of losing it.
getting two good fistfuls of hair just before naptime

The lunch spread at "nonnie & papa's" house on Easter Sunday.
"nonnie" Shanny

* A quick peek at Awkward Family Photos made me laugh out loud sevearl times and brightened my spirits.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

20 Months Old!

A brief post of what you have been up to lately:

• The past few months have been a word explosion!

• We’ve taught you to say, “Please” when you want something, which is great…
BUT this has started to backfire as you’ve started repeating this word over & over with more urgency instead of saying the name of the actual thing that you want.
Sharing ice cream with Uncle Kyle at Sparky's in Columbia.

• Favorite foods: bread (any kind), yogurt, fruit smoothies. You’ve never turned down a dessert.

• You LOVE Schatzi! She is usually your first word when I get you from your crib, and who you are looking for when we pull into the alley to our garage.

o You also love Schatzi’s “tail” (or nubbin'). You try to grab it and then squeal/giggle with delight.

• You definitely like to climb... furniture, ladders, stairs… Just like your daddy.
o As you attempt to climb on top of the coffee table, you look to me for a reaction because you know it’s wrong.
Sitting atop our china hutch, trying to get ot the laptop and your cup of Cheerios.

• Like most kids, you REALLY enjoy electronics. You can literally work my iPhone better than some (you always get into the photo section and watch videos and flip through the pictures).

• You’ve still proven to be an awesome traveler! Our 11-hour stretch to Missouri has not been a problem (without a DVD player)

• Almost every time I pick you up from the nursery, you have seized Marissa and she is reading a book to you.

• You are a great sleeper and a champion napper. I hope you never stop taking your 2-hour mid-afternoon nap. I’ve started having you nap on “the big bed” with me in the afternoon.
You read your book as I read mine, and then you drift off to sleep while holding my hair. I’m trying to get you used to the idea of sleeping in a BIG bed.
o I know you’re awake when I heard a thud from our bedroom, followed by bedroom doors closing (you’re recently obsessed with opening & closing doors now that you can effectively reach the handles)

• You get nervous around strangers or people you haven’t seen in a while; you pull your shirt up to expose your belly button and won’t make eye contact for a few minutes.

• You still love the bath & race to the bathroom if I mention the word.

• You've also used your potty several times, which has been AWESOME! I'm thrilled you're showing an early interest in this!

• MY favorite new thing: if you accidentally spill something, you say, “Uh-oh” and “towel” as you speed off to the kitchen to get a kitchen towel to wipe up the mess. THEN you attempt to put the towel back on the rack.

• You enjoy doing little chores for me around the house like throwing things into the washer,
bringing me Schatzi’s (empty) water dish, setting silverware in the dishwasher basket. It’s usually a good distraction if you’re starting to get upset about something.
“Hey Kaden, can you please find my… … … ?”
Kaden Benjamin Dow
April, 2011

I know I say this every few months, but I have enjoyed you more and more with each passing week. You are developing quite a personality and have proven to be a wonderful companion.
You are the best!

Monday, April 11, 2011

13.1 Miles

The main motivation for our trip was to come and cheer for my best-friend, Jennifer Schneider,
as she ran  in the Go! St. Louis ½ Marathon.  She ran the hot, hilly 13.1 miles in honor of her mom with the Team in Training, Leukemia/Lymphoma Society.
 This might sound silly, but I don't know if I've ever been more proud of her as she jogged past our little cheering squad at mile 9all smiles and waves.
Looking amazing at mile 9!

Cheering squad: Kristin, Adam, Jessica, (Jennifer) Theresa, Jeff and Clayton

After the race, Jennifer & Jeff were so thoughtful (brave?) to have everyone out to their house in Warrenton for lunch, dinner and lots of playing.

In all, there were 7 kids running around that afternoon.  I thought it was so neat to see them interacting since we were all so close growing up/ high school.

Kaden & Ava

For more pictures 

and I am going to put this in print...
Jennifer, Jessica and I are going to do a ½ marathon together within the next 5 years (after babies)

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Around the Farm

Over the course of our LONG drive across Oklahoma & through Missouri, Kaden became fascinated with cows.  I don't know how many times Kaden would spot a herd, then point and exclaim, "COWS!"  I tried to be just as enthusiastic as he was... 
Man, there were a lot of cows to get excited about!
In the morning, (Great) Grandpa Cook took us for a ride around the farm to see dad & whoever was around.  We pulled over to watch Uncle Steve feeding cows and Kaden got super-excited (more "COWS!") that he went right to Uncle Steve and even got to ride in the tractor.
 Later that afternoon we went over to David (and Crystal's) new house & acreage. 
 View of David's new field
This is why I stay home.
It makes me happy to see Kaden in Missouri and having fun with my family & friends. 
If I were teaching school, there is no way we would be able to have these extended visits or come back nearly as often.

Friday, April 8, 2011

4 Generation Dinner

Kaden & I drove into Missouri again this past week for another visit.
We met my dad, grandpa and brother at Lonestar steakhouse in Jefferson City, Missouri.
Kind of a wild dinner after being cooped up in the car for 11 hours...
 Too many things to look at besides a camera.
Kaden & Grandpa Cook
always fun with Uncle Kyle
ending the night on GREAT Grandpa Cook's lap