Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Summery Stuff

Hard to believe July is almost over, which means August is almost here, which means school is about to start again. Holy smokes! Here's some of what we've been up to the past few weeks.

Fourth of July

We had a nice 4th of July weekend. The fireworks were on the 3rd, and were really nice! This was our second time taking Harry (his first time here), and he was so excited to see them. We got to the high school a little early and a nice family with a 5 year old girl sat down next to us. Her and Harry got to play around while we enjoyed hearing the 16 Candles Band play some awesome 80s music. 

On the 4th we did a few fireworks of our own. 

School Shopping

Once Upon A Child was having a clearance sale so we got a head start on some school shopping for Harry. We got some cute stuff! We didn't bring anything to trade in, so all this cost us about $50.

The shirt on the top right is one we've had before. We loved it so much when Harry was younger and couldn't pass it up!


I've been doing well with my new year's resolution of wearing makeup more often. Harry often sits in the bathroom with me while I get ready. The other week we were at Big Lots and Harry found a $1 makeup palette he wanted. Knowing "no" would cause a tantrum, I bought it for him. And.... we've had a lot of fun with it ;)

He's quite the little artist! When he was doing my makeup he was so meticulous, making sure everything looked just like he wanted it to. And no, I don't think these photos are "blackmail" or ones that I'll have to show his Prom date one day. They just show a little boy who is curious about the world. He has asked to wear makeup to camp, but I tell him makeup is for grownups and not kids. This blog post from Baby Sideburns pretty much sums up my parenting philosophies on the whole should I let my son wear makeup/nail polish thing. It's definitely worth reading IMO :)

First Movie

We took Harry to his first movie theater experience! We took him to see Inside Out. He woke up in a bad mood that day and honestly, wasn't too into the whole movie-going experience. He's talked about going a bunch since though, so maybe it made more of an impact than we thought. I think we're going to hold out going to another one until either The Good Dinosaur or The Peanuts Movie, both of which release in November.

Dad's Birthday

Ant's birthday was last week. As we've done for the past few years, Harry got to pick out some presents for his dad at the Dollar Tree. We always have such a fun time finding the perfect gifts! Which, of course, are all things Harry loves ;).

For a cake we ordered Batman themed cupcakes from Target. Delish!

The Friday after his birthday we went out to Joe's Crab Shack per Ant's request.

PhotoShop Class

I took a DSLR camera class with Balanced Exposure a few years ago. I enjoyed it and have been wanting to take another one of their classes. When they sent out an email about their 1000th class, all about PhotoShop, I signed up right away.

I've been working with PhotoShop Elements for about 5 years now, and everything I know about the program has been self taught. The class was really informative. While I knew the basics of most of what was taught, I learned easier ways to do things and some advanced techniques. As a gift for attending the 1000th class we received admission to another class free of charge, so I get to go back in just a couple weeks, yay!

Here's a before and after of one of the photos we worked on in the class. It's not perfect, but I'm pleased with the results!

Ninety94 Chicago

Ant started a podcast a couple months ago! It's called Ninety94 Chicago and is conversations with people around Chicago. He has quite a few episodes already. One segment he does is called "Around Town," where he and I review different places in the area. Our latest one, about Pie Five, also includes Harry! I haven't posted a video of him in a while, so if you're curious about what he sounds like, be sure to listen to it! Harry was so in to it as Pie Five is his new favorite restaurant and couldn't wait to talk in to the "big microphone" about it!

Ant is always looking for new, interesting people to talk to, so send him an email if you think you'd make a good interview!

Monday, July 13, 2015


It took a bribe of 5 M&Ms (to be eaten in his room) to get this month's picture! It's not that Harry hates taking pictures, quite the opposite lately, he's always asking me to pull out my camera, but he insists on only taking silly face pictures, LOL! 


Some more typical poses these days...

My little goofball :)

Along with swim lessons, Harry is also enrolled in summer camp. It's run through a local preschool (different from the one he attends), and the "counselor" is a teacher. The kids do crafts, read stories and play- mostly inside because it's been so cold and rainy lately. Harry's enjoyed it, I was scared he was going to have a hard time with drop off, but it's been fine. He does like to say, "Don't forget to pick me up!" before I leave, not sure where that came from since that's never happened (knock on wood!). This camp is over soon, and we've signed up for another session that goes through mid-August.

Over the last month or so he has started getting dressed all on his own. He's been able to do his pants for a while, but just recently he learned how to get his shirts on without help. One day he literally took his shirt off and put it back on a dozen times just for fun :)

He can also go potty all by himself. Washing hands used to give him some trouble, but he's finally tall enough to reach the faucet. He also gets a kick out of dispensing the soap in to his hands. Mr. Independent!

Harry thinks bar codes are awesome. He loves to take an item and "pay" for it at the price checker at Target. He recently discovered that pretty much everything has a bar code and points them out with total excitement every time he finds one.

At night I'll always say something like, "Love you, sweetheart," or "See you tomorrow, Sweetheart." Harry has started saying the same exact thing back to me, which is adorable!

One of his favorite things to point out while we're driving is cherry pickers. He thinks they're so cool. Really any kind of construction equipment is so exciting to him, but the cherry pickers get the biggest reaction. And if we see a person working in the cherry picker? OMG, forget about it! It's almost better than Christmas morning for him.

Speaking of Christmas.... he's convinced that every day is Christmas lately. This totally came out of left field. He wants to pull the tree out and decorate it and make cookies for Santa. And last night he asked to read the Berenstain Bear's Christmas book before bed!

A few more pictures...

From our trip to Santa's Village Amusement Park.... it was so rainy that day! But we had lots of fun :)

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Swimming Lessons

We've been keeping pretty busy this summer, and one of our weekly activities has been swim lessons!

I think most people can agree that swimming is an important life skill and I don't think it's ever too early to learn. It's amazing to see babies under a year swimming on their own! Harry hasn't gone swimming much- the pool at our condo was closed all last summer- so starting lessons is a whole new thing for him.

When deciding on where to go for lessons, we researched two swim clubs in our area. One of the clubs had better availability so we signed up for a free assessment at the beginning of June. We liked the facility and staff and signed up for lessons on the spot.

We've had 3 or 4 lessons so far, and Harry has made a lot of progress already! I think it will still be a while before he moves on to the next level, but he definitely feels more comfortable in the water. The first couple lessons he wouldn't blow bubbles in the water, but he'll do it now. This week he even got to put on goggles and put his face in the water.

I think we'll continue the lessons at least through September, maybe October, and then start back up again next spring.

These pictures are from Harry's assessment, he's been in class with 2 other kids, both a couple years older than him. I don't know why the club was so empty the first time we went, it's always filled with little swimmers during his lessons!

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