20 May 2009

Quinn's Vocabulary

Both Don and I noticed that Quinn's vocabulary really blossomed last week while we were in St. John. I think it was great to have Don around 24/7 and also all the new stimulation where ever Quinn turned. Tonight I was updating my journal and we started writing down the words Quinn knows.

Here are the spoken words that Quinn uses on a regular basis: up (his favorite), mama, mommy, papa, buddy, ball, beer, pillow, burp ;), book, Don, shoes, one, juice, eat, me, I, nose, high five (just yesterday!), pee pee, bye bye, and mighty (more on this later). I'm sure we've forgotten a bunch too. He also knows lots of animal sounds: meow, woof, quack, baaa, hee-haw, moo, bwak (like a chicken), wee-wee, chirp chirp, neigh.

Signs that Quinn uses regularly are nurse, up, down, book, help, eat, drink, more, brushing teeth, bath, toilet, dog. He's learning them as fast as we can teach them.

Don has always called Quinn "Mighty" and lately Don has been saying Mighty and pounding his own chest. Quinn has picked up on that and will now say Mighty and pound his chest when you ask him his name. It's very funny and cute!

Every point in Quinn's life has been amazing for us, but seeing his vocabulary explode has been really incredible. No wonder Q has such a hard time falling asleep at night -- he has so much going on in that big brain of his!

Sand and Water...

...but not quite like St. John ;) We got Quinn this sand and water table a month or so ago and finally got around to filling it on this beautiful NJ day. Quinn had a great time splashing around and playing in the sand.

19 May 2009

Video from St. John

Here are a couple of videos from our trip. In the first video you can see Quinn doing the "up" sign requesting that Don throw him up in the air. The beach videos were shot at Maho Bay.

17 May 2009

St. John Travels, Part III

Another great beach with Quinn was Maho Bay. It's a beach that we never stopped at before but was great with Quinn. It is just steps from the road/car which is a huge benefit when you have to carry a 25# kid, 2 beach chairs, cooler, snorkeling gear, and a beach bag (poor Don). We also found a great spot on the beach that provided good shade all the way in to the water. Quinn could play by the water and get some sun protection.

Here's a view of our beach set up from the water. The water was very calm and shallow a good ways out.

Quinn having some fun with his bucket.

I asked Don to get a picture of Quinn and I so there would be some proof that I was there. I'm always the photographer :)

We found a great babysitter who watched Quinn one morning so Don and I could hit our favorite snorkeling spot, Waterlemon Cay. It's about a 1+ mile hike to the beach and then a pretty good swim out to the Cay for the snorkeling. Once we got out of the car and started our hike, it started pouring down rain. We were drenched by the time we got to the beach so we just headed right out in to the water. Here's Don getting ready to go in.

Despite the rain, the snorkeling was fantastic. The coral and the fans were absolutely beautiful and so full of color. I found a waterproof housing to put around my little Canon digital and got these underwater shots.

We generally see lots of sea turtles in this area because of the sea grass. We saw this little guy as we approached the island.

There is an area on the sandy side of the island where the starfish congregate. In past years we have seen dozens in this area. This year we saw 5 or 6. Here's a colorful yellow one.

St. John Travels, Part II

St. John has so many beautiful beaches that it's hard to decide which one to visit each day. Trunk Bay is probably one of the most beautiful beaches in the world and the most popular on St. John. It attracts the cruise ship crowd but that's never enough to deter us. Trunk Bay is a great beach for kids because the water is always calm and fairly shallow and there are nice facilities including a snack bar, showers, and bathroom. We hit Trunk Bay a couple of days.

No matter how many times I see this view, I always find it breathtaking. There is an underwater "trail" around the island for snorkeling. When Don was out snorkeling he saw a 3 - 4' barracuda hanging around the backside of the island.

Quinn loved playing in the sand with his shovel and pail.

Quinn became pretty fearless in the water and would run right in. He would frequently get caught off guard by a little wave coming in and would go under, but we pulled him up and he went at it again. Here he is hanging out in shoulder deep water with his trusty shovel.

The guys hanging out on the beach.

The poor guy didn't go a minute with out his trusty hat, thanks to mom. He came home just as pale as when we left.

St. John Travels, Part I

After a 7 year separation, we were finally reunited with our beloved St. John and it was as great as we remembered. This was our fifth trip back and our first time with The Mighty Quinn. We stayed in a house that had a magnificent view of Great Cruz Bay on one side and St. Thomas on the other.

We found one positive thing about living in NJ -- we can catch a direct flight from Newark to St. Thomas and it's only a 4 hour flight. Once we hit St. Thomas, we grabbed our rental car and drove across the island to Red Hook where we caught the car ferry to St. John. We hit the store and stocked up on rum (and a couple of other things) and headed to the villa. This guy or one of his friends was our official greeter as we pulled in. He hung around most of the week. Don also spotted his girlfriend.

Once we got unpacked, it was time to jump in the pool. As you can see, the guys are having some fun splashing around.

Here's a view of the Westin and Great Cruz Bay from our deck.

On our previous trips to St. John, we spent a little bit too much time at the locals favorite hangout called "The Beach Bar". It is right on the water with great sunsets, the crowd is salty, and the drinks are cold and strong. We were disappointed that we wouldn't be able to hang out there on this trip. But we had a nice suprise when we stopped by to check out the action and realized that we could grab a beer and food at the bar and sit at a table on the beach. We got to relax with our drinks and Quinn got to run around and play in the sand. It was a win-win situation.

Here's Quinn in front of The Beach Bar throwing back a beer ;)

And the guys having some fun in the sand.

And the happy family.

Quinn also got his first tropical concoction consisting of strawberries, bananas, and coconut. Don also treated him to a Bill's Banana-Rama back at the house (this was my father's special treat for us kids growing up on St. Croix).