Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Photo of the Week: Week 42

The big news for this week is that Daniel is getting a lot more vocal. In addition to his typical-boy actions sounds, he's also started to venture into words. He has said exactly one Dutch word and one English word so far, and each one several times. He has said hebben, which is Dutch for want, and mama, which melted my heart. Any guesses on what's next?

26 Months of Wedded Bliss!

Niels and I are celebrating 26 months of wedded bliss today! This photo was taken last week at the Indians game. Penske gave us seats in their suite, so we had an awesome view of the game. One of my new mommy friends babysat Daniel and we had an actual date night!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Snapshot at Target

Last week we were at Target and were passing by the hat-section. We know better than to buy one since our lovely son is not a hat-person. So, we did the next best thing: put it on and very quickly take a picture. It helped that this one snapped on because otherwise we would have been too late. Anyway, since we didn't take our regular camera, the phone was used and the result of this snapshot (in the truest sense of the word) is this lovely picture...

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

He Speaks!

It's a big day in the de Jong household. Daniel said his first word. We were wondering if it would be Dutch or English. I speak mostly English all day, but will try to say words in both English and Dutch, if I know them. I know my colors, basic animals, numbers, etc. Niels speaks mostly Dutch, though he slips and talks in English quite a bit, too. So...Daniel's first word was in Dutch.

We figured his word would either be Mama or Papa. It could go either way, with Mama being both Dutch and English, and dada and papa are fairly close. One of those is usually a kid's first word. Not our kid.

We were having dinner and as we frequently do, we had yogurt for dessert. Daniel loves yogurt. I don't really think I can express just exactly how much Daniel loves yogurt. Whenever he see the yogurt container, he opens his mouth and waves his arm up and down. And now, he says, "hebben." That's want to our American readers. Daniel's first word: I want. Nice. Maybe the next word will be Mama.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Picture of the Week: Week 41

This picture does a pretty good job of illustrating Daniel's personality. He is such a good boy! Even though he's been teething for the last six weeks, he's still a pretty cheerful guy. Poor kid gets cold symptoms when he's teething so he gets two week spurts of runny nose, drooling, and raspy breathing before a tooth comes, then a good week of health before it starts again. And yet, he's mellow yellow about it all. Good boy!

One quick anecdote about his sweet temperament. We've gotten to the stage where we are having to say "No!" a lot. "No, Daniel, stay away from the cords!" "No, Daniel, stay away from the tubes!" The other day, Niels and I were eating dinner and Daniel was in his high chair. He was ready to be done and started rocking his chair! Whenever he does something that could hurt him, we say "DANGER!" in a loud voice. It stops him cold. When he rocked his chair, I said, "DANGER," and he stopped, put his head to the side, looked at me, and patted me with his hand as if to say, "It's okay, Mommy. Don't be mad." My heart melted and I had to try really hard not to laugh. I love our boy!

Monday, September 21, 2009

9 Month Check Up

Our growing boy is growing! Today we had Daniel's 9 month appointment.

drum roll please...

Daniel is 22 pounds, 11 ounces, putting him at the 75th percentile, and
30" long, putting him at the 90th percentile.

Maybe we have a little linebacker after all!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

A little home decorating

We've started to tackle a few projects around the house. Thought all you out there in cyber-land might want to have a peek.

Our family wall. We added the photo of Daniel (close up below). For those of you who haven't been over. The first picture is from our engagement, the second is from our wedding, the third is from our first anniversary. The other frames have our names and 5th, 10th, 15th, 25th and 40th anniversary dates.

I found this frame at the Flower Factory and couldn't resist. This is one of my favorite baby pictures of Daniel. It was taken on the day I was so sick (he was 4 days old). It looks like he's praying.

VERY slowly working on the "Dutch" bathroom. Found the towels for a buck at Walmart. The Tulip artwork, faux tulips, vase and vase rocks are from Flower Factory for a really, really cheap price! I still need to paint...as noted by the color samples STILL on the wall.

We found this runner at Target. I really like the colors. I think I want to go back and get another one for the kitchen!

A Nice Breezy Day in the Park

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Picture of the Week 40: Daniel the Frog

Daniel the Duck

Broccoli Bash!

Daniel is all about new foods. He'll eat pretty much anything we offer him. And he wants to try anything we have! His only food nemesis, peas, has been conquered now that we ditched the Gerber pureed stuff for thawed out frozen ones. We're so happy that he's a good eater! This week's picture (and bonus picture) is Daniel with his favorite veggie: Broccoli!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Skol Vikings!

Yesterday, Niels and I finally celebrated our 2 year anniversary. Niels bought me tickets to the NFL season opener: our Minnesota Vikings, led by former archrival Brett Favre, played our local team, the Cleveland Browns. We bought the tickets from Niels' colleague, who has season tickets on the 50 yard line. We had an awesome view of the field. The weather was perfect. And the Vikings won!

Click here to see more pictures.

Mr. & Mrs. Viking Fans

There were about at least hundred people holding this HUGE flag during the national anthem

The flyover was pretty surreal. I didn't realize they started doing those again. After 9/11, planes weren't allowed anywhere near stadiums and other huge gatherings of people!Align Center

The view from our seats!!!
Post game prayer.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Rest In Peace, Sgt. Bryan Berky

Every morning, as I pump milk for Daniel, I check my email and Facebook. This morning I was devastated to learn of the death of Sgt. Bryan Berky, who died in Afghanistan Saturday. I never met Bryan, but his wife, Erin, is one of my "Fertility Friends." She is one of about 40 women with whom I shared life throughout my pregnancy and all nine of Daniel's months of life. Erin has a son, Harrison, who was born 9 days after Daniel.

Like all of the mommies on our board, I am overwhelmed with grief. I simply cannot wrap my mind around the idea of something happening to my husband and Daniel being denied the opportunity to know what an amazing dad he has. Granted, Erin married a military man, a bomb specialist at that, but after several years of deployments, she was counting the days (40) until he was coming home for good. I simply cannot comprehend her grief.

I finished pumping, went back to bed and gave Niels a big hug. I am so grateful to have married such a wonderful man and am grateful to have him safe at home. I love you, Sweetie!

For more about Sgt. Berky, click here.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Babe in Playland

A local church has a really cool. free play area for kids. Daniel is still a little too young to enjoy the big area, but we got there early today so I took some pictures with him when he wasn't going to get run over by the big kids. Click here for more pictures.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

+/- 25 Things About Being 9 Months Old

by Daniel, with help from Mommy
  1. I'm officially a chunker. I went to the doctor this month and shocked both mommy and my doctor with my weight: 21 pounds, 8 ounces. I'm now at the 75th percentile! No more failure to thrive here!
  2. I am about 28" long.
  3. I am firmly in my 9 month clothes now, even a few 12 month ones. Mommy was very sad to put away some of the fun onesies I've been wearing my whole life!
  4. Mommy is still hoping for new Viking apparel. The new season starts tomorrow (Vikes on Sunday), and my Viking onesie is starting to give me a wedgie!!
  5. I still wear a size 3 diaper.
  6. On August 31, I cut mysecond tooth!!
  7. I'm now an expert crawler.
  8. I love to crawl under things - my jumperoo, my piano, tables, chairs...sometimes I get stuff. I don't like that part so much.
  9. I really love bath time with Daddy. When he splashes the water with his hands, I follow with my feet. I'm also really fascinated by the water coming out of the spout. How does it do that!?!?
  10. Mommy and Daddy made the front living room my playroom. They moved the couches to the walls and got a BIG play yard to surround the whole thing. Now I can't reach those fascinating bookshelves anymore. They say it has something to do with safety. Boring...
  11. On August 22, I ate my first meal all by myself. I had milk (I held the bottle), pancake, banana and cheese. Mommy put everything into little pieces, but I fed myself!
  12. I've tried lots of new foods this month: cheese (love it), YOGURT (my absolute favorite thing in the world), dirt (not so much a fan, but it's fun to play with!), pancakes, graham crakers, rusk, croissants and mandarin oranges (all yummy).
  13. I also just started meats. I've had chicken and sausage. I like it!
  14. I love food!
  15. Except peas. The only way I'll eat them is if they are covered with prunes. Don't even try to give them to me straight.
  16. One August 27, I stood up all by myself for a few seconds. I was standing by my toy box, one handed, like I always do, then Mommy showed me the ball. I started to reach for it, and took my hand off the toy box. After a few seconds, I realized I wasn't holding on to anything and fell down on my bottom. I haven't tried it again since.
  17. We were in Grand Rapids this month. Mommy got together with all her COW friends. Daddy and I had a whole day for just us. It was pretty good. Except he forgot to feed me one meal. It's okay...I'm a little chubby now.
  18. Mommy took me to a new park (Price Park). They have duckies there and one goose became my good friend. Especially when Mommy gave him bread crumbs!
  19. I helped my friend Dante celebrate his first birthday. He had cake...everywhere. I think turning one will be fun!
  20. For Labor Day, Mommy and Daddy took me on a long car ride...all the way to Wheeling, WV. We even stopped in Amsterdam...Ohio. I slept for most of it. I got that from my Mommy.
  21. Mommy says we are retiring the swing. It was getting a little uncomfortable. I've been taking all my naps in my crib now, like a big boy!
  22. The exersaucer is the next to go. It's getting a little cramped in there, too!
  23. I love playing with the ball Auntie Rachel got for me. I like to chase it around the room and when Mommy bounces it on my head, it makes me laugh.
  24. My new nickname is Monkey Boy. I love to make monkey noises!
  25. Daddy made a video of Mommy reading me the story she wrote for me. Daddy distracted me the whole time because he was saying the words with Mommy and making gestures

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

39 weeks ago

39 weeks ago, I was 39 weeks pregnant...for a few hours, and then Daniel was born. I cannot believe he's been out as long as he was in! Being a little sentimental about it, I took a picture with his panda. I guess he's been busy growing!

Picture of the Week: Week 39

Monday, September 7, 2009

Daniel's Bedtime Story...by Mommy

Amsterdam, Ohio

Today (Labor day in the USA) we went for a little road trip towards the Ohio river. Unfortunately, the weather wasn't cooperating (raining) so we didn't take too many pictures. The route took us from Green south on I-77 to Zoar and from there to Ohio route 39 and 43 to Steubenville where we crossed over the Ohio river into West Virginia. We drove to Wheeling and from there took US-250 back to I-77 and home.

During our drive towards Steubenville we saw a number of signs for 'Amsterdam'. We kind of got intrigued and wanted to check it out. Turns out Amsterdam, Ohio is a very small town of about 600 people with 1 police car and no school. We were actually able to spot the one-and-only Amsterdam police car.

In about three months we'll be heading to the 'original' Amsterdam, but for now we got our little fix... ;-)

Sunday, September 6, 2009

A touch of Dutch

It's tradition in the Netherlands that with the birth of a baby you give out a little snack called 'beschuit met muisjes' (rusks with little anais sprinkles - pink if it's a girl, blue if it's a boy). So about a year ago we bought the rusks. However, we went a little overboard and bought a whole box instead of just a few rolls. Needless to say, we have a few rolls of rusks left...

The good thing is that the subject of the celebratory event for which we bought the rusks is now starting to like them himself! Good eats, Daniel. There is plenty more where that came from...

Friday, September 4, 2009

a day in (price) park

Yesterday was a nice sunny day, so Daniel and I found a new park to explore. There's nice walking path, lots of trees, a playground, and best of all, a pond with ducks. Daniel loved feeding the ducks (okay, watching the ducks while I gave them bread crumbs). He even made friends with a big Canadian goose. I had fun taking pictures til the battery died...

Here are a few of my favorite photos of the day...

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

latest photos with mommy and daddy

On Sunday we went to the birthday party of the one-year-old son of some friends of ours. Even though it was August, it felt like October! We got out some of Daniel's "winter" clothes (12 months) and were surprised/shocked/alarmed that they already fit! Regardless, we took the opportunity to take some new pictures of mommy and son and daddy and son.

Picture of the Week: Week 38

This picture is pretty representative of our boy this week. A constant runny nose. But he does have something to show for it: his first ear infection and his second tooth!