Sunday, February 22, 2009

Carnival Time

It felt like a really busy week around here, so, for my own ease, I'll take this week's post in chronological order. (shocking!)

Monday through Thursday--- nothing happened

Friday, he got to go to a parade with Nonnie, Poppy and Uncle Eli while Mom and Dad went to Baton Rouge with Granny Lynn for a Cirque Du Soleil show.

We left Lafayette at 3:30 for a 5:30 reservation at Tsunami atop the Shaw Center, and, between Mardi Gras traffic and a couple of wrecks, it took us two and a half hours to get to BR.
We had to get Paul and Liz to order our food so that we could make it to the 7:30 show on time.

Once we got there though, it was all worth it.
Thanks to Aunt Connie's quick clicking purchasing finger, we had front row seats on the floor.


When we were getting Riley dressed before we left, he showed us his best jean model pose/white boy dance moves.

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Saturday morning, Mommy had a massage scheduled, but Daddy had to go to Firestone to get a tire fixed. Since our usual ride was relaxing to tranquil nature sounds at Riverspa, he and I walked to my parents' house after picking up some Chik-fil-a.

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I know peanut allergies are all the rage, and all the cool kids have 'em, but since he was able to successfully eat nuggets and hash browns fried in peanut oil, I guess he's just going to be a nerd like his parents.

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(Though he doesn't look like me anymore, his love of lemonade proves that he is undoubtedly my son.)

After eating, he treated us to his four note piano concerto, which he found rather impressive.

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On the way back to the truck, he fell asleep and stayed asleep even while we crossed a fairly busy Ambassador Caffery Parkway, thus barring him from ever claiming to be a light sleeper.

Just a few hours later, we met up with Paul, Liz, Caroline and Joan's parents for lunch at Johnson's. Riley had his usual ounce or two of pulled pork while Caroline destroyed chicken, boudin balls, some sausage and tasso sauce piquante poboy and almost a whole serving of bread pudding.

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I think Riley was concerned with how much she ate, so he tried to gag her.
Either that or he's the world's worst bulimic.

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When no one was looking, he became dissatisfied with walking and decided to take up the previously unnamed sport of "porch rail climbing." Uncle Eli would be proud.

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After lunch he proved to be entirely disinterested in the children's parade, but Mommy got got a chance to start learning how to use our new (to us) Digital SLR, a process which Liz helped to document.

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Now that we've got that fancy rig, you'll hopefully see some better pics around here.

After the parade, we all headed over to Cypress Lake for some more photo lessons.
(yeah we have a swamp on our campus, with native alligators and huge fish. No multi-million dollar tiger cages for us. We keeps it realz.)

For a while, Riley tried to play dead, but forgot to close his eyes.

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So, to get him energized, I made him think I was throwing him in, just a few yards from a 6 foot gator.

He, of course, found that to be hilarious.

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Once he was all shook up, we were able to get a couple of cute pics of him and Caroline. (she's five weeks older, for all the noobs)

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Then he quickly reverted to his usual goober-self.

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We really need to teach him how to give age/relation appropriate kisses so as not to reinforce negative southern stereotypes.

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That's probably the end of our Mardi Gras-ing till next year.
Though my job is great,I do work for a huge corporation based in Indiana, and we don't have Mardi Gras off.
For some reason, when you've got to burn a vacation day to be off, it just doesn't seem worth it.

To cap off his day, we returned home where, with a little assistance, he pushed Caroline around on his train.

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Now the weekly randoms:

As a general statement, he's walking alot more now and staring to walk between objects, not just people. He hasn't had a real fall yet, but I know it's coming.

Confident that he had mastered walking, he tried to drive Nonnie's Jeep, but didn't get far without the keys.

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Nonetheless, I have no doubt that he could drive better than half the population of this town, even without being able to reach the pedals.

Meal time has turned into playtime when his cup cap is around. But when it's not around, mealtime has turned into jaws wired shut time.

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He doesn't look very good in a tiara, which I am thankful for.

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and he and Jimmy are becoming much better friends.

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Before I click "publish post" I want to give a little heads up to anyone ever traveling through Lake Charles with a kid.

along the lakefront and next to the Civic Center parking lot (on Kirby Street) is an awesome looking wooden park that I think is dubbed Millennium Park. It's very easy to get to from I-10.

if any Lafayetters remember the "castle park" that was at Ascension Day School then St Barnabas, it is like that but 4 times the size and way cooler.

We're definitely going to check it out once he's old enough.

Have a safe Mardi Gras. (and by that I mean, don't spill your drink)

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Baby got back.... walking.

After a week long hiatus, he proved to us again that he can walk.
He also proved to us again that he can easily turn it back off.
Maybe he just walks on Fridays. I don't know.
But I predicted that he would be walking by Mardi Gras and technically he is, so I win.

The weather was actually nice enough on a couple of afternoons to break out his swing that he hasn't been able to use much yet.

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which also prompted me to mow the yard which you can see was looking pretty shabby.

Saturday we made it to another softball game, where he tried to steal the show by demonstrating how many plastic keys he can fit in his mouth at once.

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and, as usual, he made friends with the person sitting behind him (Uncle Jake this week.)

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He also put on his best mid-80's rapper impression

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Then when it got a little chilly, he hung out with Poppy in the football team's indoor practice facility.

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But once Poppy's attention was diverted, he just had to see what the metal rail tastes like.

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Most importantly though, he got to see Anthill (Amanda) take the "mound."

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(And for anyone who actually looked at the scoreboard, it was a tournament and UL was the guest that game. Just don't want you to think they got stomped when they were actually the stompers.)

Riley extends heartfelt congratulations to Uncle Eli and Anthill for being profiled in this week's Valentine's Edition of The Vermilion as UL's Cutest Couple.

I'd post a link to the story but, despite having a reputation as a good computer school, UL isn't modern enough to post their weekly student newspaper online. How pitiful is that?

Saturday evening, he braved the weather to catch his first Mardi Gras Parade.

Given that it was well past his bedtime, he didn't really care much about the parade and continued the new phenomenon of being scared by loud noises, which we really need to fix.

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He did have thrown to him one of the Krewe of Rio themed, upper anatomically correct dolls.

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Around the house he's learned to get into the pantry cabinets and I robbed him of a nice glass jar of spaghetti sauce that he was about to pull off of the shelf.
He's also been taught by Granny Lynn how to play with the fridge magnets.

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He figured out that he is too lazy to crawl all the way around our gigantic queen size bed, and realized that there is a shortcut under the bed if you keep your head down.

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I really need to give a big "thank you" to Paul for suggesting that Caroline might like a play table for Christmas, which spiraled out of control, once in my head, into me constructing tables for Caroline and Riley.
I really don't know what we'd do without ours. Riley uses it all the time.

Thanks for planting the seed.

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And finally, for a little laugh, here's our celebrity visitor of the week---Riley Kardashian. (for you pop culture junkies. Watch The Soup Fridays at 9 on E!)

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Sunday, February 8, 2009

Walkin' and Sighin'

It's official, Riley can walk.
He currently chooses not to, but the genie is out of the bottle.

One evening late in the week, he just started taking smaller steps than normal which helped him stay upright.

Three or four times he would take 4 or 5 steps, pause, then start up gain and take 5 or 6 more. It was far more purposeful than his prior stumbling just to keep from falling.

Unfortunately though, now he refuses to even try again, and sits down every time we stand him up. Oh well.

He's also started to develop good dental hygiene and loves playing with the power toothbrush that I don't use anymore.

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Saturday morning he got to hang around with Mommy while Daddy headed up to Chicot with the boys to find out how out of shape he is.
No surprise, I found that I have the speed of cold molasses, the balance of a 10 month old and the endurance of a bottle rocket.

(L to R: PK3, YJames, Pec, LT, BW)
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Then the whole family headed to a Lady Cajuns Softball game, a first for all of us.

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He, of course, sported a cool Cajuns shirt.

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Unfortunately, the crowd noise upset him a few times (which never happened at football games or festivals), so we did lots of walking around.
He even offended Amanda's mom by crying every time she held him, but it was just bad luck on her part.

Granny Lynn found him a softball that distracted him for a while.

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and after I cleaned it up, he tried his best to eat it.

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then he showed us his Robert Barone like tick, in which you must touch everything to your forehead before throwing it.

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After the game, we triumphantly returned to Coyote Blues for the first time since the whole dairy thing went down.

While he still can't have cheese directly , Joan did go straight for her Shrimp Diablo Quesadillas.

Riley, not to be outdone, put a whoopin' on some poblano rice and charro beans.

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Sunday he got his first birthday present a little early when Granny Lynn got him/us a membership to the Zoo of Acadiana.

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He is still a little too young to pay attention to most of the animals, but did give them his stare when they fit into at least one of a few categories.

1. They were close to him

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2. They were huge.

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3. They were audibly fighting over food; or

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4. Daddy dangled him over the enclosure.

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We didn't drop the $2 on the train ride, but he did get to ride a concrete deer. Quite an adventure.

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while there, we had the good fortune to see, and even photograph the rarest beast known on the planet, scientific name Cuddluponus Rileyevans, known to the common folks as "The Cuddly Riley."

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Since we have the membership, we'll get to see how much more he fills in the lion cut-out 12 months from now.

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For anyone interested, Zoo memberships are $10 off this month.
And a membership here is honored at the BR Zoo too, along with other small zoos around the country.

Mr. Active has also learned how to reach from his bed to pull books off of his bookshelf, but hasn't quite figured out how to, or doesn't want to, bring them into bed, so he just drops them and expects you to pick them up.

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If he damages his 20+ year old Brer Rabbit book that I had to scour the internet for, I'm gonna have to throw him in the briar patch.

Now for the random pics that I like this week.

Here he is pointing to his favorite toy, the electrical outlet.
His hair looks like he may have already had some contact with it.

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Checking out Mom & Dad's old law school pad in BR, now inhabited by Caroline's fam.


Riding cousin Caroline's manly pony.


Jamming some tunes


and reading Freakonomics with Uncle Paul.


and in closing, I usually try to make the title make sense in some quirky, ironic or sarcastic way. Not this week though. This week's title is a Bluerunners song. If you've never paid attention to them, you should really check out Live at the Triple Door, or Honey Slides.
If you can't get into either of those discs, you are dead inside.