Saturday, December 26, 2009

Making sense of things

Okay, my happy-go-lucky, excellent sleeper, and normally "normal" toddler has been anything but normal since he came home on Wednesday. He has slept in two-hour fits and waking up screaming for the last three nights. We are all sleep-deprived, and having flashbacks to his newborn days, and even those weren't this bad.

When I picked him up on Wednesday, he told me his teeth hurt and pointed to his molars. His 2 year molars had already broken through, so I thought maybe they were dropping the rest of the way and causing him pain. We gave him some ibuprofen and just let him be cranky. His eating has been off lately, but we were attributing that to normal toddler patterns.

Well, all that changed this morning. He told me his mouth hurt and pointed down his throat. Meanwhile, I had been checking his ears to make sure the tubes were doing their jobs. Take a close peak at his tongue (and ignore the smile because it didn't last long).

Yes, that is almost a white tongue and throat.  So, off to Patient First we go for some antibiotics.

After a nap and the medicine, he was happy to play his MP3 player.  A 2 year old with a MP3 player.  He is very technologically advanced.

That smile is the real deal.  I only wish we had known what the real problem was much sooner.  Maybe next time.


Friday, December 25, 2009

Christmas Day

Cooper gave me and J a nice present to start the day. He slept until 8:30, after being up every 2-3 hours for the last THREE nights. Yes, I said three nights. It was like back to newborn days. We thought it was two-year molars coming the rest if the way in, but more on that later. Needless to say, Cooper has been a little on edge (nice way to say being a bear or a crab or any other irritable creature you can think of) but we love him very much anyway.

We had a nice breakfast, courtesy of Grammy (oh, and Cooper is now calling her Grammy instead of Grandpa now). My parents were on their way after a sleet delay so we planned a dinner meal for everyone. To split the day up for Cooper, we decided to let him open some presents now. He really got into taking every piece of paper ... no matter how small ... off all the presents.

He got his first digital camera.  He couldn't wait for J to open it.  I think he took 200 pictures within the first 30 minutes, so of which weren't too bad for a two year old.  I will have to post some of those so you can see what he sees.  Some are quite hysterical.

I love this one where he is looking back over his shoulder.  He didn't feel well, but he was a trooper in spite of it all.

I love the crazy side of the McCormacks.  As you can see, the monkey theme is continuing.

And every boy needs a decoy.  Yeah, just go with it.  Meet Quackers or Puddles.  The name depends on what I can remember at that point in time.  I see lots of baths in Quackers future.

And finally, we gave Cooper a kid's size cleaning trolley.  For all of you who follow Cooper's stories, you know he is OBSESSED with brooms, mops, dustpans, vacuums, etc.  So, when I saw this, I couldn't resist.  Listen closely and you can hear him chant "Broom."  Maybe he will be a cleaning company entrepreneur.

While Cooper napped, we got my mother-in-law on the Wii.  We couldn't wait to try our new Mario and Sonic Winter Olympics game.  Snowboarding and bobsledding, hear we come.

My parents finally arrived, and Cooper got to play with his favorite four-legged creature, Mitti.

Another round of presents yielded some terrific smiles from Cooper.

And the best present of all ...

... lots of family and friends spending the day together.  Thank you to everyone who joined us and shared in the joy of the season.  


Merry Christmas from the McCormacks

May your day be merry and bright.


Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Eve Traditions?

Now that we have a toddler, I have been struggling to find "our" Christmas traditions. Some of my favorites from my childhood are ...

Christmas Eve night at my Grandmother's with all my Dad's brother and sisters and lots of cousins.

Morning runs to W.G. White's to buy stocking candy, country ham for Christmas morning, and oranges.

Rambling through Lanier's Hardware looking for random gifts ... a plug-in teapot for my dorm or M&M men lights for the tree.

Even wrapping presents for frantic shoppers at my Mom's gift shop (my sisters aren't going to believe that one).

J shared his favorites as ...

The family parties at his aunt's house

and his Dad "catching" Santa Claus sneak into the house on film.


So what traditions do we start for Cooper?

I looked for an old general store around Richmond, but I couldn't find one (I am open to suggestions for next year).  We had already been to Lewis Ginter and Cooper had already met Santa. So, we went to ...

Can you guess where we are?  I can honestly say I have never been there before and all the men were completely enamored with it.

Yes, we went to the Bass Pro Shops on Christmas Eve and it was my idea.  I guess being surrounded by boys starts to rub off on you.

Cooper thought he was a very cool cat wearing AK's sunglasses and "riding" an Arctic Cat. If he asks for one of these next year, we are in trouble.

He did watch other kids take their picture with a very nice looking Santa in a cute elf village.  I won't tell on anyone, but someone in our group spent a little time sharp shooting.

The aquarium was a hit.

He was slightly frightened by the big bear.

And fell in love with a decoy ... so much so that he got one under the Christmas tree because every boy needs a decoy to take a bath with, or so that was the reason I was giving by the person buying the decoy.  Welcome Quackers to our family.

I'm not sure if Bass Pro Shops will become our tradition, but the boys may decide for me.

Christmas Eve did continue with a McCormack Family dinner tradition of "managots" or manicotti for the non-Italian speaking (home-made by my mother-in-law).

Cooper opened his last gift from his Advent Calendar ... a bag of reindeer food.  He was sprinkling it on the front yard so the reindeer can find his house.  He would say "Whee" every time he threw a handful into the snow.

And the family favorite of the reading of the Polar Express by my mother-in-law.  She has been reading this book to her family every Christmas Eve since well before it became popular a few years ago.  All of her children have silver bells to place on their trees.  It is a happy, tearful reading.  Except for the toddler who is normally enthralled with reading.  He was all over the place during this year's reading.  Maybe next year will be better.

What will Christmas Eve bring next year? Only time will tell (don't groan).


Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Wordless Wednesday - Where's the Cheese?

Do you know where the cheese is?

Yes, he is wearing it.

With a toddler, do you really want to know where it's been?  I have found it's best not to ask.

For more Wordless Wednesday posts, check out 5 minutes for mom, Go Graham Go, Two of a Kind, Working on a Full house and 7 Clown Circus!


Saturday, December 19, 2009

There's no fun like snow fun!

The snow finally stopped mid-afternoon, so we bundled up and went out to play. Someone, who will remain nameless, was not happy about it ...

... until he got a snow shovel in his hand.

Maybe he was upset because he was wearing his much older cousin's ski pants. I think they are a youth medium, and Cooper is only 2.  They did the job, but I will be buying some that fit before the next snow.

Cooper spent a little time on a trashcan lid. There was not a sled to be found this early in Richmond, so J improvised with a metal lid and some cord.  Cooper didn't seem to mind.

He tried to pull his Dad ... but no such luck.  Maybe next year he will be big enough (I sure hope not).

I love how the house looked all snow-covered.


"Make a candy cane, Mama."

It started snowing about 4:30 yesterday afternoon, and it hasn't stopped. I can't believe how much is coming down. To keep an active toddler occupied since we are house-bound, we decided to pull out the playdough. I handed Cooper some Christmas cookie cutters, and we proceeded to make a few dozen "Chrissmas twees" and "Cand cane". He didn't seem to notice that they were the wrong color.


Friday, December 18, 2009

Walking in a Winter Wonderland

Today we received a pleasant surprise in our little Southern part of the map.  I cannot remember seeing a snow like this, especially this early in the winter.  It started around 5 pm, and has been steady ever since. J made a mad dash to Wally World for some boots. 

I know tomorrow will be another big day for him.  So stay tuned.


Tuesday, December 15, 2009

GardenFest of Lights - "Pretty Ites"

We had a warm tonight, and took the opportunity to see the GardenFest of Lights.  J and I have lived in Richmond for eight years and had never been but we knew we had to take Cooper.  The Botanical Gardens has a walk through display with a children's section.  Cooper was in awe.


"My Dada. I run." This was quoted a few dozen times.  They also had a lighted maze, which he also ran through.  He did sleep very well after this night.

Unfortunately, Cooper's favorite display did not photograph so well.  He LOVED the butterflies.  He was looking through the tower to the lake display. Look to see how his eyebrows are raised.  He was a very happy and excited guy.


Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Decorating the tree

Cooper spent some time camped out in the chair watching the Grinch on J's computer while we put lights on the tree.

He did "help" by putting on many ornaments ... on the same branch.

 Finally, the finished product.



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