28 January 2010

Splish, Splash, Splosh

Quinn has a Thomas DVD called Splish, Splash, Splosh where Thomas and his friend Rosie run through mud puddles splashing each other. It's definitely Quinn's new favorite video and he watches it every other day or so. Today we were out after the snow, which has mostly melted, having some fun in the puddles. Of course we would never go on a walk without Thomas. Around the 34 second mark you can hear Quinn say Splish, Splash, Splosh!

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2 Down, 3 To Go

A while ago I made this post where Quinn had learned to write the letter Q. Yesterday he surprised me with the letter U. Here is his handiwork (I'm sure that you recognize the Q and the U).

Now only 3 more letters to go. The "I" should be a piece of cake and then it's two "N"'s. How hard could that be for a 2 year old? ;)

This morning we woke up to about an inch of snow on the ground and Quinn's first words were "build snowman, huh mama?". I shoveled all the snow off the driveway in to a pile so we could build a little snowman.

Yesterday for breakfast I made a quinoa cereal (sounds tasty, eh?). I put a little maple syrup on it, some roasted pecans, and blueberries. Quinn gobbled it up and said "This is delicious!". That the first time I heard him use that word. Tonight he told me "I love blueblewies". Yes, he adds in that extra "l" when he pronounces it. He is also saying "I love you mama" on a more regular basis. Hmmmm :) In the mornings he usually wakes up and asks "Where's Papa?" or "Go see Papa".

He's definitely a keeper.

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27 January 2010

Our Buddy

Today we said goodbye to our Buddy :( We had almost 5 great years with him and he was such a loving, sweet dog all those years. It all started when we were looking for a dog once we got settled in California. We started out fostering dogs and when we went to pick up our first foster dog, Louie, we saw another big, white lab mix in the next kennel. The "situation" happened with Louie and we started looking for a dog to adopt because we knew we wanted a dog in our home. We really wanted a 7 year oldish, yellow male. We saw "Templeton" on the SCLRR website, went to go meet him, and took him home with us that day.

Darwin was a lab mix. Don always said he was mixed with a cat because he didn't like water, didn't chew on anything, wouldn't fetch, and was a little persnickety. I remember once we got home and he had gotten in to the trash. We were so happy -- Darwin was a dog!!!

I can remember the first time I took him for a walk to the little park right around the corner in Moorpark. I let him off the leash and he went running right for the road. A pick-up truck was coming and the guy jumped out of the truck and grabbed Darwin's collar. Here's a picture of Darwin after our first hike together. I think he was so worried that he would be left behind that he jumped in to the trunk.

That year we dressed him up for Halloween. Remember how he used to love to lay on the landing on our staircase in Moorpark.

And what a good boy to put up with all those foster dogs. The ones that loved him so much that they bugged the crap out of him...

...and the old ladies that growled at him...

...and the ones that attacked him...

...and the special old guy who just wanted to be friends.

Through it all, Darwin was a trouper. He felt right at home with us from the start.

And when Quinn came along, he played the role of the tolerant, sweet big brother again. Here's Darwin and Quinn at 8 days old.

And all my handsome guys hanging out.

Part of our happy family walk on Thanksgiving Day 2007.

Being his camera shy self on Christmas Day.

Taking the drive up the coast from California to Seattle with Don. He loved being in the car but barked when left alone in the hotel room. He didn't want to be left behind.

These last 2 years his status dropped in the family, but he was always kind and happy. And always watched over Quinn.

I took one last picture of Darwin a couple of days ago as his health was declining. He seemed to have had another stroke. Darwin was very unsteady on his legs unable to get up the stairs from outside and he seemed to have lost quite a bit of vision. One of his last meals was steak and rice and he loved every last grain.

I'll always remember Darwin as that sweet boy that loved to follow me around the house. Walks were his favorite thing in the world, even more than food. He brought us 5 great years and we couldn't have asked for more. This is the picture that was originally posted for Darwin when he was up for adoption. I think it perfectly captures his sweet soul.

RIP sweet buddy! You were one of a kind and we will miss you.

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Little Picasso

Quinn got an easel for Christmas that has a white board, a chalk board, and some paper for either markers or painting. He uses it all the time and loves to sit and draw on the white board. We'll pull up his little stool and he'll sit on the bottom step and Don or I will sit on the top step and draw. His frequent drawing requests are shark, train, mountain, fish, tracks, snowman and smiley face. It's funny because when I first started drawing a smiley face he would get very upset. I couldn't figure it out until one day I erased the smile. He then drew in the smile and was very happy. Quinn likes for me to draw the circle, sometimes the eyes, and he likes to make the smile :)

Yesterday I gathered the strength (and drop cloth) to do some good old fashioned painting. I got it all set up and asked Quinn to step back so I could take a before picture. I got one snap in...

...and then it was off to the races.

What kind of mother allows her son to wear his white pajama top to paint? A crazy one I guess.

And the masterpiece.

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24 January 2010

Meeting Uncle Brad

We had a special opportunity to see Brad at the Newark Airport on Saturday. He was flying from Bogotá to Kabul (yowza!) and had a 5 hour layover in Newark. We kind of surprised him with a visit and Quinn got to meet his Uncle Brad for the first time! Don had not seen Brad in about 3 years and I had not seen him since our wedding almost 10 years ago. It was great to have a chance to catch up with Brad. Quinn wasn't so sure being in this new place with this new face but glad we were able to make the connection. Here are the handsome guys!

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Outdoors Fun!

On Saturday we went to the playground at the local nature center, Trailside. They have a couple of great playground structures that are great fun for Quinn. He's all decked out in blue again (and Don loves to dress him in orange pants!).

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23 January 2010

5 Funny Things about Quinn

1. Last night we thought we were going to be out late, so I let Quinn take a nap today. He was up until about 12:30 am with Don, so I think no-nap days are still the way to go.

2. Quinn and Don share many common interests, fire being one of them. Quinn loves fire! He loves blowing at the candle and then asks "more fire".

3. Quinn has learned to say please and has started with the "please, please, please". Such as "DVD please, please, please", "milk please, please, please". Last night when he was up with Don he wanted Don to sit on a stool to draw with him. So he said "Papa sit, please, please, please". Very cute!

4. He has also learned to say "sorry". This is definitely not a word that we taught/encouraged him to say. He mostly understands it and uses it correctly but often apologizes to inanimate objects. "Sorry chair" or "sorry paper". But glad to hear him say it and use it.

5. Last night he took his coat off all by himself!

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Quinn Loves Chopsticks

Tonight we decided to try a local hibachi grill for dinner. You might remember what happened the last time we went to Benihana. Not so much fun. But Quinn had a great time tonight watching the chef do his thing. Lots of clinking and clanking with the knives and a flaming onion volcano that even "choo choo'd" as it made it's way across the grill.

Here's Quinn getting a handle on his chopsticks.

And he hits the mark with some noodles! Way to go!

Happy Family!

It's nice to have a restaurant where we can take Quinn.

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21 January 2010

Little Boy Blue

Quinn and I had some fun outside today. Quinn in his blue coat, blue gloves, blue hat, and blue eyes. Oh, and little blue engine. Me with my camera. But when I get a shot like this, I'm happy I'm so shutter happy! What I love about this picture is that it is straight out of the camera without any cropping or adjustments. I think he just pops off the page.

We started off down the driveway with Thomas and made an abrupt stop at a puddle at the bottom of the driveway. What's a boy to do? Get wet and dirty!

Then check out the mud in the yard...

...and splash in the puddles.

And he wonders why his glove is so wet and muddy.

And pants!

About an hour after walking out the front door we made it to the park. Quinn the Scientist needs to understand how this gumball is going to roll down the slide.

And then a fun trip down the slide.

A walk along the ledge. I way overexposed this photo but with a couple of adjustments I thought it turned out pretty cool.

Quinn loves to cover his Thomas with leaves. "What happened Thomas?" he says.

After an afternoon of adventure it was time to head home for a long soak in the bathtub and another early bedtime. Good night my sweet boy. We had another great day together.

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