It's so hard to believe that summer is halfway over! It's been a great summer so far, so I can only assume that the second half will be as good as the first.
We have had an exceedingly busy week, what with Gramma and Poppop flying back to Maryland, my continually crazy work schedule, and Vacation Bible School - Mr. Steve was in charge of the games again this year. By all accounts, Lava Lava Island was a grand success and Steve had a blast hanging out with the kids and orchestrating all sorts of fun for them, usually involving water coming from sprinklers or guns or pools or buckets tipped from 6 feet in the air (the tidal wave). It's been a crazy but very rewarding week.
On Sunday we went up to Sundance for their ever-fabulous Sunday brunch. Before eating, we decided to attempt a family picture (not so easy with little guys, trust me), and I think that the results are pretty darn good, as you can see above. We got the thrill of a lifetime (ok, maybe not, but it was pretty darn cool) when Robert Redford walked right by us while we were posing for the shot! It was actually the first time that we've seen him up there, so we were understandably impressed.
Brunch was great, as always, although I did have to remove the strawberry slices that were baked into Sam's pancakes (if it has any indication of gourmet, Sam won't touch it). We tried to keep Ben happy with a chocolate macaroon, but it was too hard for him to bite into, so then we found that pudding was really the ticket to a happy baby. A happy and very messy baby. Fortunately, the Hawaiian shirt hid chocolate very effectively.
After brunch we rode up the chairlift, which was quite the treat. Aside from our continual fright that Ben was going to wiggle out of our hands and plummet to the ground, it was great and the views were really spectacular. Fortunately, we all rode up and returned to the base lodge safe and sound.
Sam and Ben are sure getting to be great friends as well as brothers. We do have our difficult times, especially when one or both of them is tired and Sam thinks that Ben may be trying to think about touching something that Sam considers his so he hip-checks his brother or bops him on the head. Those times aren't the highlights. But, on the whole, they are learning to coexist peacefully. Unsurprisingly, Ben wants to be everywhere Sam is, doing everything Sam is doing, but Sam usually enjoys the company and adoration. Sam has also been very good at sharing with his little brother lately and offering him food and toys, so we are very proud of our (almost) big boy (he doesn't become a big boy until he starts using the potty - that will hopefully be sometime this decade).
Ben had his one-year-old checkup this week and he's doing just great. He is presently 30 1/2" tall (70th percentile) and 21 lbs 10 oz (30th percentile) and thriving. He got his fourth tooth on June 11th and his fifth on June 13th (those were some unhappy days!), so he now has three top teeth and two bottom ones. I think that he's enjoying biting things off immensely because he's most happy when we give him something like cheese or apple slices that he can exercise his teeth on!
Ben has also added some new skills to his repertoire. He has picked up "uh oh" as his newest word and likes to shout it out and chuckle as he throws things to the floor. Very cute the first 45 times, but after that the novelty wears off. He has also started climbing up the sliding board very effectively, causing us to worry every time that he is going to topple off of the playset. Fortunately, he hasn't had any mishaps yet, and he is understandably very proud that he can get all the way up to where his brother is.
Sam has two new interests to speak of. The first is playing "doggie". We have some sponge balls and a frisbee, so he loves it when we throw them and then he fetches them and brings them back to us, crawling on all fours and carrying his prize in his mouth. This game gets very interesting when Nesbitt, Sam, and Ben are all competing to be the first to the ball and bring it back to us. We haven't needed stitches... yet.
Sam has also started to get interested in board games, although not interested enough to sit down and play one the whole way through. He gets very frustrated when we insist that we go in turn order and obey the rules of the game (such as not placing pieces randomly around the board), but I guess that's just part of learning to play. We just got Chutes and Ladders the other day, which Sam enjoys a lot because it contains two of his favorite things: slides and ladders. I think that he was a bit confused when we purchased the game, though, because he kept calling it "Shoot Some Ladders". Maybe his waning enthusiasm can be explained by disappointment that there is no actual violence in the game.
Well, I guess that's about it from our neck of the woods. Hope you and yours are doing well!
Steve, Jamie, Sam, and Ben
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