Day 1

Posted June 15, 2011
Posted by Michele

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

This evening we had a dinner with Grandpa and Pearl, who I guess would be Luke's Great Grandpa DeJong and Great Grandma Pearl (wow, that's a mouthful). I was surprised to discover that they've been online "since the beginning of the internet!" and promptly gave them the blog address.  So here's to you, Grandpa and Pearl, who will be reading this blog for the first time tonight.  We had a wonderful time enjoying that scrumptious meal with you.  I've never seen Luke eat so many vegetables! I wish we could have stayed longer to chat, if only Luke had not been threatening to knock down every antique porcelain figurine in your house.  Maybe next time we'll bring along a portable crib to contain him. Thanks for everything!


Posted June 15, 2011
Posted by Michele

Today is my first official day as a stay-at-home mom.  As I awoke to the dawn of this new era of my life, I felt both apprehension and excitement, sadness and joy.  (Okay, if you want to the truth, I actually awoke to Luke screaming, but I promise I thought about it after that.)

So, to chronicle the first year of my in-home mommy career, I am launching my own 365 project, called 365homemade.  My goal is to take a picture every day for a year.  The hope is that I can learn to celebrate each day that God gives me to stay at home.  No day with my little man is too difficult or too mundane to cherish.

Here goes!

Danger: Everything

Posted May 24, 2011
Posted by Michele

Why do I feel like "no" is the most commonly used word in my vocabulary?  I've said that little word so many times lately, I feel like my mouth will soon be stuck in a permanent "o" and my eyebrows will be furrowed forever.

My usual regime of positive behavior support is crumbling as I toil to keep Luke alive through his 15th month.  Let me give you few glimpses into our recent narrowly-missed disasters.  The other day I walked into the kitchen to see Luke holding the oven open with his hand inside the door while the oven was on.  No, he miraculously did not get burned.  I bought an oven lock that evening. 

The next day Luke was running through the house carrying a porcelain dish that I swear was out of his reach. Thankfully I confiscated it before it could be smashed into pieces.  I have no idea when he grew so tall.

Let's see; Luke's also learned that it hurts when you close a drawer on your fingers, that Toby bites when you stick your hand in his mouth, and that you can't run and trip head-first into a filing cabinet without consequences:

Sam wanted me to get a picture right away of Luke's first bloody nose, but I insisted on cleaning him up first. Well anyway, you should have seen the other guy.

Even though most of the house is on toddler lock-down, there are a few cupboards that I've left unlocked for Luke to browse through. Usually this means that our pots, pans, pitchers, and cans of tomato sauce have all found permanent homes sprawled across our kitchen floor. This week, however, Luke discovered a new use for those cans:

Did it occur to anyone else that a jar of salsa weighs about 5 pounds? This is not a safe activity.  Sadly we had to put an end to that activity, too.  It looked like so much fun.

I know that all of my perilous situations sound like old hat for all you moms out there, but for me, I'm still getting used to living in a war zone.  Some days it feels like its Mom vs. Everything.  And I'm not sure who's winning!

Easter Pictures

Posted May 12, 2011
Posted by Michele

We had a lovely Easter weekend in Ann Arbor with Grandma and Grandpa Williamson.  In the afternoon, I decided to take the camera out to see if we could get some good shots with Luke while he was still all dressed up for Resurrection Sunday.  Look at these adorable pics with Grandma and Grandpa!

Unfortunately, we wasted all of Luke's preciously fleeting patience on shots with those two. By the time it came to family photos, he was not very cooperative. This picture pretty much sums it up...

Anyway, we did manage to tickle him into a sort of hysterical giggle for one shot:

And that's all I have to show. Hopefully as we go on in parenting we'll learn a few tricks of the trade for getting our little tyke to say cheese.

Work It, Baby

Posted May 09, 2011
Posted by Michele

We're currently in our 6th week of P90x and I must say, its been really transformational for the whole family.

Phones, phones, phones

Posted May 09, 2011
Posted by Michele

Kids at this age are always mimicking their parents' behavior.  Luke mimics everything we do lately, such as eating, cooking, reading, hitting the dog (oops), and much more. His favorite activity to mimic, however, has always been talking on the phone.  I really have absolutely no idea whatsoever where he might possibly get it from. 

In the age of wireless non-flip phones, pretty much any toy can function as a phone substitute. Take it from Luke.

wii remote

toy radio

toy remote


Here is a short video of Luke trying on his outfit for Uncle David's wedding.  Sam thought he looked like a businessman and lent him his phone to complete the picture.  Snapshot of the future??

Playing Catch?

Posted April 26, 2011
Posted by Michele

I'm not really sure who likes chasing after the ball more, Luke or Toby.

Outside Toys

Posted April 26, 2011
Posted by Michele

Last year the weather in GR must have been pretty nice in March and April, because I remember passing my maternity leave days with long walks pushing a beautiful, tiny, sleeping baby in a stroller.  Those days are long gone (tear), but finally here at the end of April we once again have a few warm sunny days to enjoy.  Now that our baby is no longer a baby, outside time has become a bit more complicated.  Babies are satisfied to lay on blankets and gaga at the clouds, but toddlers want to PLAY!  And I must say, although I miss the old days, playing really is so much more fun.  Last week we put together a few of Luke's birthday presents to enjoy.  Our current favorite is the Cozy Coupe Car.  It's perfect for zooming up and down driveway and sidewalk.  Beep Beep! To Grandmother's house we go!


Actually, I wish we COULD have peddled the Cozy Coupe down to Grandmother's house, since our trip to Ann Arbor last weekend cost us a whopping $4.18 a gallon :( Sign me up, Flintstones!


Posted April 08, 2011
Posted by Michele

We are thrilled that our little man is now eating table foods at every meal.  I believe that nutrition is very important for a small child, so in an effort to give Luke as many veggies as possible, we spent months 6-12 tirelessly peeling, baking, and pureeing all kinds of different vegetables for him. Now that Luke feeds himself whatever he can get his hands on, I find it difficult to motivate myself to face any more blenders full of orange mush.

But, what to feed a toddler? To save time and money, we've started giving him the same foods that we're eating: a scrambled egg and a banana for breakfast, grilled cheese for lunch, etc.  But its hard to know what to do for vegetables, since we eat mostly raw veggies ourselves. (Scratch that - I eat mostly raw veggies. Sam believes that he filled his lifetime vegetable quota by the time he was eighteen years old.)  

However, carrot sticks hardly seem like the ideal snack for a person with only 7 teeth, so we've had to get creative.  Without making myself crazy cooking separate vegetables for Luke's every meal, I have found a few veggie staples that are quick and easy for me, and that Luke loves. DO NOT try these yourself.  Trust me, they are not tasty.

1. Cold canned peas.  We switched to canned peas after finding too many frozen ones ended up whole in our laundry machine. (That's after they'd been through Luke and his dirty diapers. YUCK.)  Mushy and soft, canned peas are apparently delicious if you are under 2.  Over 2 I recommend zero servings because they are disgusting.

2. Canned French style beans covered with melted cheese.  I made up this dish on a whim one day when Luke refused that canned beans (really, who can blame him) and it was a huge hit.  Apparently the fact that you are only supposed to use French style beans in Thanksgiving casseroles has not occurred to him.  (And please, nobody tell him!)

3. Grilled cheese with spinach.  I hid spinach in Luke's grilled cheese & turkey sandwich for the first time today when I was making our lunches.  He ate the whole thing!  Hallelujah.  As for me? Having a kid is certainly making me think twice about how many vegetables I put in my own mouth, but cooked spinach on a sandwich is just going too far. I think I'll take my spinach on the side with some dressing, and call it a day.

Belly Laughs

Posted April 07, 2011
Posted by Michele

Originally we took out the video camera in order to capture Luke's walking.  The true nature of his skills only becomes apparent when he's stripped down to the diaper.  Then you can see that he actually sticks his belly WAY out to balance his big cloth-diapered butt.  Now keep in mind that his bottom looks especially huge in this video only because his diaper is triple-stuffed for night time, okay?  But this video is hilarious for other reasons, like the way that Toby makes Luke laugh, and the lengths Luke will go through to try to be with Toby, and Sam's ceaseless giggling in the background (like father, like son). Anyway we're thankful that Luke can't get up on the furniture - yet.