Monday, January 26, 2009

New Years

This post is a little late, but better late than never! So, every year we get together with our dear friends from college for New Years. This year was as crazy as ever, as many of us have had kids. There were six kids under the age of two! We had a great time at the Lookabills house in Pulaski (the Lookabill parents, that is!).

Here are Krisha and Jenny at our annual white elephant gift exchange. This year was a little more taxidermied dogs! (See this post if you don't know what I'm talking about, from 2 years ago! Make sure to scroll to the last picture.)
We also enjoyed a fun game of Fishbowl. Here's Josh during the "sound round".

Kathryn had lots of fun playing with Aunty Jenny....
...and Madeline.

And what's a good time without group bath time? (for the kids, that is!) Kathryn loves having a buddy in the bath, and was so excited to have at least two buddies for each bathtime!

We're already unsure of what to do for next year, when we'll have 2 more kids in the mix. We are outgrowing every place we can think of. Any ideas?

Sunday, January 25, 2009


After I wrote the last post, Jackson rolled over all the way from his back to his tummy! He did it on Saturday a couple of times, and it has proven to be quite the challenge when he's trying to go to sleep, since he's still swaddled. But, the boy is so strong, he even got rolled over while swaddled once! Next on the schedule: teeth or crawling?

Friday, January 23, 2009

4 months old!

Jackson is 4 months old today! The time continues to fly, and we continue to be delighted by our sweet "little" boy.

Jackson has grown so much this past month developmentally. He is so interactive now, and is so fun to watch as he watches and learns every day. He loves to grab things with his hands now, which makes play time fun! He is constantly chewing on his fists or anything else he can get to his mouth. He drools a lot, too. We think he's working on cutting some teeth, although we can't see or feel them yet. He sure is working hard, though. He still "talks" and babbles all the time! He's a very vocal baby, and has really gotten into a sort of growling thing lately as well. He'll especially do it when he's really tired. He still is happiest when he's being held, and has spent a lot of time lately in the Moby wrap. He loves facing out like this, where he can see the world. And, it's a great way to hold him while still being able to get things done (well, not everything, but some things, at least!). He also really loves playing with his daddy...

...and with his sister....

Lately, whenever he's laying on his back, he lifts his head up like shown in this picture. He wants to sit up so badly, but can't quite hold himself steady enough yet. He does sit for about 20 seconds before toppling over!

He's getting very strong, and can lift his head all the way up when on his tummy. He doesn't roll over very often, but has done it several times. He's also working on rolling from his back to his tummy. He's gotten about 96% of the way there. One more little kick and he'll make it!

What a cute smile!

Jackson still is not a great sleeper. We have been working on more of a bedtime routine and time with him, and he does go down earlier now. Our typical day looks something like this:
Wake around 8:00.
Nurse sometime, depending on the night/early morning.
Get Kathryn from her bed, change diapers, play.
Breakfast (Jackson in bouncy seat).
Clean up kitchen (still in bouncy seat).
Play all together (Jackson on floor, sitting in my lap, etc.)
"Nap" sometime between 9:15 and 10:00. This usually lasts anywhere from 15-30 minutes.
Play. Lunch (Jackson in bouncy seat). Play.
Kathryn's nap. This is a sweet time with both kids, where we go up to Kathryn's room, she picks out several books, then we sit in her rocking chair with both kids on my lap and read books. Jackson sits for at least 10 minutes for this and pays attention to the books. He really seems to enjoy this time together. Then we lay Kathryn down and head downstairs.
"Nap" sometime around 1:30ish.
Play with mommy till Kathryn wakes up. (The goal is to have them both napping for a significant time in the afternoon together!)
Play with sister and daddy (when he gets home) until dinner time. Sometimes he naps a little during this time too.
In bouncy seat while we eat dinner.
Then bathtime with sister (he loves this, and so does she!), bedtime routine with sister, then downstairs to play a little bit before bedtime for him.
In bed sometime between 8:00 and 9:00.
Dreamfeed one more time between 10 and 11.
This is where it gets tricky. He's been waking up at least every 3 hours to eat. He was sleeping much longer than this for at least one part of the night, but ever since Christmas, he has been waking up much more frequently. We're praying that as we work on some sleep training with him, this will be corrected soon. So, at this point in time, he wakes up at least 2-3 times each night to eat, before waking up finally for the day around 8:00. The nursing times are also a rough estimate. It depends on the day as to when exactly he nurses in that schedule. He is starting to stretch to about 3 hours between each feeding, although sometimes he'll want to eat a little more frequently for a couple of those times. He also still loves the swing and spends a good bit of time in there during some of those play times. It's a good way for him to be sitting up some, and we can put toys on the tray in front or in his hands and he watches Kathryn play while playing with his little toys too.

We still swaddle him to sleep. I am trying not to swaddle him for naptimes, to get him used to not being swaddled. However, I have recently been giving in, thinking that if I can get him into a good nap schedule, that's more important first. Then we'll work on breaking the swaddle habit. When he isn't swaddled, he does like to hold something near his face. It seems to help soothe him, and keeps his hands a little more calm. The whole sleep thing has been tough for me, honestly. Please pray that we can get his sleep improved very soon...we're very tired!

He is scheduled for his checkup on Wednesday, so I'll post all the latest stats then. He is still big for his age, but he's not chunky at all. I think he's just a big boy all around! We love our sweet boy, and can't believe another month has passed!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Kathryn's Birthday Party

The Saturday after Kathryn turned two, we had a "small" birthday party for her at our house. By small, I mean we really just had family over, but by the time all the family was there, we had lots of people to celebrate! I didn't take too many pictures, but here are a couple of her cake time.

I wanted to make an Elmo cake for her, since she is really into Elmo right now. Sandra, Johnny's mom, found an Elmo cake pan. After I baked the cake, she came over with her cake decorating stuff and knowledge, and helped me learn how to decorate a cake. Not too bad for my first cake, huh? :)Kathryn loved the cake... you can tell!

Sunday, January 18, 2009


Ok, so sorry if you've tagged me before and I never noticed. But, this time I did! I was tagged by Naomi, so here it is. This is a picture of Kathryn from this past August with my apron on, before we got her one of her own. Notice the dirty socks on the floor in the background. :) Here are the rules:

Here are the rules for photo tag:
Go to the 4th folder in your computer where you store your pictures.
Pick the 4th picture in that folder.
Explain the picture.
Tag 4 people to do the same.

Ok, so the people I'm tagging are: Lindsay Sink, Brooke Garcia, Jenny Robertson, and Diana Kemper. Have fun! :)

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Christmas: Part IV

Finally, we were able to celebrate our Crabtree family Christmas on the Saturday after Christmas. I didn't get many pictures of that time, but here are a few.

Jackson enjoying time with his Uncle David.Nick and Kathryn seeking some help with a toy.
Jackson observing his sister opening gifts.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Christmas: Part III

The day after Christmas, we headed up to my parents in Harrisonburg. Every year we gather at Aunt Darlene's farm house for the Goode family Christmas (my mom's side of the family). My mom is one of 8 children, so there are always lots of people around! (I have 13 first cousins on that side.)

This year we decided to do stockings for everyone. Each family had a stocking, and we all got to bring a small gift to put in each one. It was a fun idea! As you can tell, there are lots of stockings for such a big family!
Kathryn, Nick, Willow, and Joey, the younger cousins. (Kathryn is the next generation, though.)
Just some of the family...
Jackson enjoying time with his Grandpa.
This picture needs some explanation. My cousin Diana and I are the oldest cousins (she's older than me by 5 months). So, as the oldest, we would always take it upon ourselves to write and direct a very special Christmas program each year. This year we decided it would be fun to reenact what we used to do, and made our younger cousins/siblings Becky, Brooke (D's sister), David (my brother), and Jackson be in our play. They sang Away in a Manger. Jackson was playing the part of Baby Jesus, and the others were shepherds, or something like that... The funny thing is, they asked no questions of us, we told them they had to be in our play, and they said to just tell them what to do. It was just like it used to be (and I'm not kidding!).
This picture was taken right before we left. It was about 11:00p.m., and Kathryn had been up all day, hence the look on her face. It's a 4 generation picture with my Grandma (mom's mom), my mom, me, and my two kiddos. I sure do love my Grandma...she's very special!

After that, it was on to Christmas at my parent's house. Whew, what a busy, but fun-filled time this Christmas was!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Christmas: Part II

After we had our family Christmas at home, we headed over to Johnny's parents for Christmas breakfast and more fun. Jackson wore his dapper outfit for the occasion. Granddaddy thought he was quite handsome!Jackson with Grandma and Granddaddy.
The family watching Kathryn open her gifts. She was spoiled!!
Kathryn helping Granddaddy video tape.
So cute with a bow in her hair!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Christmas: Part I

I'm finally getting around to writing our Christmas posts. Check back often, as I'll be posting several times in the next day or two!

Before all the festivities began, Kathryn and I did some baking. She, of course, loved helping to make the cookies and decorate them. She took her job very seriously, making sure each cookie got just the right amount of sugar sprinkled on top.

Then we celebrated Christmas Eve at Aunt Cindy's house. We enjoyed a nice dinner together, and of course presents. Kathryn had fun with her Aunt Cindy!

Then on Christmas morning we had some nice time together as a family before heading over to the Sinks (see next post). Kathryn woke up that morning at 5:45a.m.! We have no idea how she knew to wake up so early on Christmas morning, but it ended up being good because we had plenty of time as a family in the morning, and she took a 3.5 hour nap later that day!

Here's Kathryn's special Christmas present: a kitchen set! She loves it, and plays with it every day!Johnny did such a great job putting it together and setting it up with bows and the other presents around it to make it look so special for her. He also set up our stockings. Isn't he great?!?

Kathryn got lots of goldfish crackers, since she loves them so much! We let her eat some, even though it was the morning, as a special treat!Kathryn also got to open Jackson's presents, since he doesn't quite have the hand-eye coordination to do it himself yet. He was fine just to sit and watch.
After exchanging gifts, we had some family time to sit and read the Christmas story in the Bible, and thank God for His gift to us, JESUS! Check back soon for more posts on our Christmas!

Monday, January 05, 2009

Happy Birthday, Kathryn!

Today was Kathryn's second birthday! I can't believe how fast these two years have gone by! I did well was yesterday that I kept crying when I'd think about it! Sorry I didn't post until tonight...I wanted to make sure to spend lots of time with my girl today.

We had a great day together. We played lots with her new kitchen set that she got for Christmas, read books, went to Toys 'R Us to get a birthday present, where they also gave her a special birthday crown (that she then wore for the entire rest of the day) and a balloon (see the picture at the beginning of the post), and ate dinner at Chick-Fil-A so she could play on the playground afterwords and get some ice cream. She even went all the way up the playground for the first time and climbed all through the tubes. Enjoy some pictures from today as well as some from the past few weeks, and read a [long] update about what Kathryn is up to these days.

Opening her present. Can you believe she's two years old?!?

The traditional on-the-stairs birthday pictures.

And ones from a year ago to compare. It's amazing how much she's changed! She looks so much like a little girl now, and not a baby!

Kathryn has loved having her daddy home for Christmas break, and missed him so much today! She kept asking about him all day...

Looking beautiful and grown up in her special dress.

Here is a bit about Kathryn's life these days...

Kathryn is starting to show even more of an understanding of Jesus in particular. Of course she loves to read in her toddler Bible, especially stories of Jesus with the children and of Jesus healing people. However, up until the other day, whenever we mentioned going to church, she'd get all excited and say/sign "fish". Why fish? Because they feed the kids goldfish crackers in nursery! But just the other day we mentioned going to church, and her first word was "Jesus". Then of course she said "fish"! Also, the other day we were passing a house on our street that is very decorated for Christmas with all kinds of snowmen, santa clauses, reindeer, etc. in the yard. They also have a nativity scene set up, and when we passed their yard, she immediately said "Jesus". It was cool to us that in the midst of all that she saw, Jesus stood out to her most. It's also a sign that she's starting to understand why we celebrate Christmas, something we've really tried to teach her this year!

Kathryn is still an on-the-go kinda girl. She's always moving, even in her sleep! She still loves to play outside, and the cold weather makes it really hard. She never seems to mind the cold, asking to go outside (and not wanting to go inside) even on the coldest of days. I however am not such a fan of playing outside on those days, so am always trying to think of various indoor activities to help her get her energy out.

Here she is walking our neighbor's dog, Mercy. Whenever we see Mercy outside, Kathryn loves walking her down the sidewalk.

Riding her new bike she got for Christmas.

Kathryn is talking more and more every day. Some new words include: ready (sounds like "betty"), me, mine, thank you, love you, car, KK (for Aunt KK), more (not just the sign anymore!), baby...that's all I can think of for now, but every day she adds new words! And of course she babbles all the time, having entire conversations in gibberish.

Some of the things we hear most often around the house include: mama (which she says about 3,487 times an hour, no joke!), dada, hello (whenever the phone rings), juice, more, and this (in reference to almost anything).

Kathryn loves to help me do things. Some of her favorites are giving Jackson his paci, throwing away diapers, doing the dishes (aka playing in the water), Swiffering the floors, wiping anything with a paper towel or washcloth, or anything else she sees us doing.

Some of Kathryn's favorite activities are drawing, coloring, singing, dancing, cleaning, playing outside, cooking, watching videos, reading, taking care of Jackson, brushing her teeth, and imitating mommy and daddy.

Kathryn usually goes to bed around 7:30 or 8:00 at night, and sleeps until about 7:30 or 8:00 in the morning. She takes one nap after lunchtime, going down sometime between 12:30 and 1:30, and sleeps anywhere from 1-3 hours. I consider it a good nap if it's at least and hour and a half. Anything less than that isn't ideal.

Because she is now 2 years old, discipline is a constant thing these days. However, Kathryn shows a heart of understanding and learning in this area that sometimes surprises me. Of course she has her impulsive toddler moments, but whenever we need to discipline her, she almost always shows a heart of sorrow and repentance. She is also good to apologize to others when needed. Since she doesn't yet say "sorry" (we're working on the sign for this), she will pat the other person on the arm, leg, or head with a very concerned look on her face. She's also very good to show and practice obedience after being disciplined, as we almost always go back to the scene of the offense and practice what she should have done. She is in a screaming/screeching phase, and we're working on obeying without a scream or melting on the floor as well.

She is doing really well with pretend playing. She loves cooking things for people in her new kitchen set she got for Christmas. She also loves taking care of her baby dolls, and will "change" their diapers, wipe them with washcloths, feed them, burp them, etc. She also loves to dress up in random things, as you can see in these pictures. (And yes, she put them on herself! How fun it is when she walks into a room like this!)

Other Random
Kathryn loves to take her shoes and socks off in the car. This is often an issue for us, and I have to tell her as soon as we get in the car if it's an ok trip to take them off or if she needs to leave them on.
Kathryn loves game shows! She loves watching Wheel of Fortune in the evenings, and sometimes Jeopardy, and also loves The Price is Right in the later mornings. She doesn't get to watch them every day, but enjoys it when she does.
She still takes her paci for naptime and bedtime. I was planning on taking it away shortly after she turned two, but am now getting sad about it because it is another part of her babyhood gone. We'll see...she's quite attached to it and I anticipate some rough naptimes and bedtimes without it, whenever we decide to take the plunge.
Speaking of taking the plunge, we're not potty training yet, and will start whenever she shows readiness. She's not as eager to sit on the potty as she was a couple of months ago (probably due to all the travel and change of routine she's had with the holidays), so we may start trying to encourage it again soon.
Kathryn loves to take a bath, and whenever we mention that it's bathtime, she immediately starts undressing herself (including taking off her diaper) and heads to the bathroom. Don't worry, though, she throws the diaper away herself and puts her clothes in the hamper! That's my girl!
We still call her Punky sometimes as her nickname. I think we started calling her that as a shorter name for Pumpkin. Either way, I really like it and think it's cute for her!

We are so thankful for our sweet little girl. These past two years have been so rich, and we are blessed to be allowed to be her parents. We pray for her all the time, that as she continues to grow up, she'll not only grow physically but also spiritually, coming to the point where she will call on the name of the Lord for her salvation. We can think of no greater thing for our children. Thank You, God, for our precious Kathryn Elizabeth!