Charlie, Evie and Ford

Charlie, Evie and Ford

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Match Day

Today was the long-awaited Match Day, where all of the 4th-year medical students find out where they are going for residency. We have looked forward to this day for a long time now, really excited about the certainty that it would bring. It is hard for me to believe that it's already here--it really does not feel like it's been 4 years since we moved to Dallas and Clint started medical school....but I digress. The important information is that Clint matched at his first-choice program--UT Southwestern here in Dallas! Yep, we are staying put. :) We are all very excited about staying in Dallas and about the incredible training he will receive here. And Charlie and I are SO proud of Clint for all of his hard work. What an accomplishment! We had another bit of good news today as well--my brother, Sam, matched at UT Southwestern as well, so he and Audra as headed to Dallas after the honeymoon. We are SOOOOOO excited to have them here. I can hardly believe it!

Here we are at Match Day. Charlie was a bit overwhelmed with all of the excitement and not on his best behavior. He is very active lately and not loving situations where we don't let him get down and crawl (notice his very mad face :).
Still trying to force his way down...
Pensive, waiting for the results...
Charlie and Holden (the son of one of Clint's good friends) had so much fun playing together. They were very happy to get down and crawl. Charlie resembled a little monkey that had been cooped up too long (and by too long, I mean about 10 minutes :).

After the match, we took Charlie out to feed ducks and relax. He loved it!

We had to get some swings in, of course. :)
Congrats to Clint, Sam, and all the others who matched today. We are very proud of you all!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Happy St. Patrick's Day (a few days early)

Dallas had its big St. Patrick's Day celebration this Saturday and it was wild. Our neighborhood was filled with green people, green clothes, green beer, green beads, and lots of excitement. Charlie was very interested in all the action, and looked particularly quizzical when a guy in a green wetsuit rode a unicycle down our sidewalk (not kidding). We had a busy day that included a birthday party (complete with Kindermusik!) and a St. Patrick's Day party. Charlie LOVED the Kindermusik birthday party, but was a little unsure about the adult party (I think the roudy game of flip cup made him nervous :). Charlie really was hilarious at the birthday party. I think he thought he was the guest of honor. He made sure he was in the middle of the circle at all times, positioning himself right on Miss Lisa's lap after ascertaining that she was going to stay in the center of the action. I had to chase down Mr. Independent a few times to keep him away from smaller children and a low-lying DVD collection, but he was generally very content to roam around on his own. I do love the independence and self-sufficiency that crawling has provided!

Our little leprechaun.
You can't hang out in the yard without eating a few leaves.
Poised for attack.
Uh oh...he's on the move...
...and our temperamental model storms out of the photo shoot.


Charlie is so much fun to go to the grocery store with. He loves all the activity there and seems to have so much fun watching the workers, flirting with the ladies, smiling at other babies, and "helping" me choose our food for the week. As you can see above, he has gotten in the habit of reclining in the cart and throwing his arm over the side as we go through. He looks just like a teenager driving a convertible around with the top down (and I think he believes he looks just that cool :). We always get a lot of laughs when he does this and as you can see, he's pretty proud of himself too. :)

Monday, March 7, 2011

Charlie's First Bachelor Party

Charlie, Clint, and I enjoyed a quick trip down to the ranch for Sam's bachelor party this past weekend. Clint spent the day and night skeet shooting and cooking at the cabin with the guys and Charlie and I spent the day and evening hanging out, eating pizza, and playing bridge with Mom, Dede, and Meg at the House on the Hill (and made a short stop by the bachelor party to watch the shooting and drop off food). We had long drives both ways, but it was so worth it. I loved getting to see everyone and Clint had a blast at the party. Charlie was especially pleased with all the action--no one loves a party more than this little man. He has really been missing all the attention and all his favorite people since we returned home.

Charlie loved the skeet shooting and was quite pleased with his hearing protectors. They squeeze his cheeks together and it cracks me up when he tries to smile with them on. :)
The shooters (and partiers).
Elam, Will, Rob, and Sam.
Charlie LOVES his new hand-me-down jacket with the attached frog. This has rocketed to the top of his favorite clothing list. :)
Sweet Dede and Robie.
Charlie adores his Dede...
...and his Aunt Meggie! These two are SO cute together!
Charlie crawled around the House on the Hill non-stop...
...and made sweet music with his new musical instruments from Papa (another of his very very favorite people). Papa lets Charlie drive the truck around the ranch. This has become one of Charlie's favorite activities, but is ruining him for car trips. Thanks a lot Papa!! :)

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Boys' Weekend

Technically, I should share blogging responsibilities with Katie, but I do realize that this is only my second post. We can all chalk it up to the fact that she does such a great job maintaining the site (and Charlie, of course). That said, it wouldn't have been a true Boys' Weekend if Mommy was in town . . . so blogging responsibility on this one falls to me. Overall, my first weekend alone with Charlie went well, if not a little hectic. Below you will find evidence of our most elaborate exploit, a trip to Dallas Zoo.
Entrance to the zoo (self explanatory).
Charlie ponders which is more fascinating to observe, the wildlife in the cages, or the clientele at the zoo (I think we ultimately decided on the other zoo patrons).
It was a fairly cool day outside, so the crocodiles weren't at their most lively. I had to be very persuasive in convincing Charlie that they were still alive.
Charlie was amazed at how human-like the chimpanzees were.
Charlie was concerned to find that only the "Lesser Flamingo" was exhibited at the Dallas Zoo. He actually left a comment card requesting the "Greater Flamingo" be present at our next visit.
Charlie and I were very impressed by the new savannah exhibit.

Charlie's concluding thoughts on our trip to the zoo: "Perhaps we do not observe the animals within their cages, but it is they who observe us within our cages."

A Shower for Baby V

I spent the past weekend in Houston celebrating the upcoming arrival of Baby Varner. Courtney, one of my very best friends, is expecting a baby in April and some of my other college friends and I got to host a shower for her. It was such a fun weekend--Courtney cooked a wonderful dinner for us on Friday, and Sarah and David were sweet enough to host the Dallas girls at their place for the weekend. We got lots of "girl" time in, and even got to try on bridesmaids dresses for Sarah's upcoming wedding, which was so exciting. We spent lots and lots of time talking babies and weddings--what a change from our college activities! :) This was also my first weekend away from Charlie, who stayed behind with his Daddy. Although I missed him terribly, the two of them seemed to have a great time together and it was kind of nice to have a few days to myself... :)

Here are the hostesses (minus Stephanie and Jill) with the lovely honoree.
The dessert table...almost ready for guests!
Kelly and Cooper came in from LA for the occasion and it was SO good to see them. Cooper is getting a new little sister in April--Kelly is due two days after Courtney!
Here's me with Courtney and Ann (who is also expecting!).
Now that the shower is over, I really cannot wait to meet Baby V!

9 Months Old!

Charlie's 9th month has been WILD. Not just with the winter storms that have hit Dallas, but also with the amount of activity going on inside the house. Charlie has gotten to be quite a fast little crawler and jets around the house constantly while he's awake. He loves to be standing and pulls up on everything he sees, and then "cruises" around the room by moving from one piece of furniture to another. He really likes pulling up on toilets and looking inside, so I am doing my best to keep the bathroom doors shut--yuk! There was a lot of falling at the beginning of the month, but he's getting much better and is even standing without support for very brief stretches every once in a while. He now gets up and down easily, which means he can entertain himself for long periods of time. I was a little nervous about the crawling stage and all the potential dangers it opened up, but I have really enjoyed it. Charlie loves his independence and plays so much better on his own now that he is mobile. I definitely have to watch him pretty carefully, but he's so amusing to watch that I don't mind. :)

He babbles a ton, and although Clint thinks it's getting more purposeful, I'm not so sure. His favorite sounds are "dat" and "da-da," but he also does the "na-na" sound every once in a while. He is also becoming communicative in other ways--he shakes his head from side to side to indicate "no," scrunches up his nose and gives a big smile when we ask for his "cute face," and waves "bye bye" occasionally (he's getting better). Aside from that, we primarily hear screeching and laughing out of Charlie--which there is a lot of! He has a breathy little laugh that we just love. He seems to do it when he finds something kind of funny, but not fully enough for a full-on belly laugh. He loves to play games with us, and is still pretty fearless. He loves to be surprised, to be thrown up in the air, to be tickled, to be turned upside down, and for us to pretend to drop him. This makes him seem so much more like a big kid all of a sudden!

Charlie still loves reading and we read several books a day. He is really interested in turning the pages right now and does not like it if I forget that that is his job. He loves books with flaps that open and close. We love "Pat the Bunny" right now--he pats the soft little bunny, plays peek-a-boo, sticks his fat little finger through the ring, and waves "bye-bye" wildly at the end.

One of the funniest things about Charlie is how vitally interested he is in his world. When we are out and about, he is constantly craning his neck to watch the people and things that are new and different. He will really stare new people down, which I think is a little jarring to them at times. :) Similarly, if new people come over to our house, he cannot take his eyes off them. I loves his curiosity, but hope that, with age, he becomes a bit more polite in the staring department. :)

Charlie is a pretty good eater these days. Technically, he can feed himself finger foods now, but he's pretty picky about what he'll eat on his own, opting primarily for Puffs and Yogurt Melts. He's not quite as diligent about eating the cut up fruits and vegetables I put on his tray, but he still eats those well if I feed him the purees. And he's taking after his father and grandfather in one important area--he is a big beef lover! :)

Charlie did great at his 9-Month appointment and seems to have put on some weight:

Height: 28.5 inches (60%)
Weight: 18 lbs., 14 oz. (24%)
Head: 18 inches (60%)

All in all, this was a wonderful month and I feel so lucky have gotten to share it with Charlie. I loved watching all the changes that have happened this month and have had so much fun with him. I will do just about anything for Charlie's sweet laugh--and he knows it!

Charlie still loves being outside and we have been spending more and more time outside in the pretty spring weather. As a result, we have eaten a LOT of leaves.