Thursday, August 28, 2008

Madison trip wrap-up

Hey everyone. Let me be the first to say I thought Erin did an excellent job as guest blogger while I was gone on my trip. But I'm back and there are a ton of pictures to catch up on. And Will is doing more and more blogworthy things each day so let's get going with these!

Here just-my-diaper-Willie and Grandpa are playing with Grandpa's toy car (btw - Will can say car now, sounds like "gahhrrr"). It's a remote control Humvee and Will had a great time driving it and crashing it into Grandpa and I.

Will went to visit Casey, the stylist who cuts Grandma's and Aunt Sara's and Erin's hair. He got a totally stylish 'do, does it look familiar?

Of course, Mom's post already detailed the fun Will had with his new friend Connor.

We went to the zoo! I had to work a lot during our trip, but I escaped for this trip. We rode the carousel, and Will picked out his "horse" (it was a rhino) and mine. In the picture on the left, he is telling me where I need to go.

There was also a CHOO-CHOO at the zoo!!! We rode it, it was pretty great.

Finally, one morning Will got to drive the boat with Grandpa (when Gramps wasn't skiing).
A very fun trip, next time I hopefully won't have to work the whole time!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Will & Connor at the Splash Pad

Erin here, filling in for Tom while he's off on a disc golfing extravaganza vacation in Wisconsin. My blogging skills are not the best (it'll be a miracle if I can remember how to put pictures in this post, and I'm pretty sure I don't know how to line the pictures up correctly), so bear with me as I give it a go!

When we were on vacation a few weeks ago Grandma Brenda, Will and I met my friend Katy, her son Connor, and Connor's Grandma Mary Jo at a brand new splash pad in Madison. It was Will's first time at a splash pad and he loved having the freedom to run around in and out of the water streams.

The sprays of water would occasionally turn on and off without warning, and to see how they would react, Katy and I put Connor and Will near one of the turned off nozzles.


Water surprise!


Oh wait, Connor can't run yet...

After the surprise spraying, we took a little snack break. I encouraged Will to share his animal crackers with Connor (we're working on sharing), so Will offered Connor a cracker. When Connor didn't reach out and take the cookie fast enough (at least according to Will's standards) Will just put the cracker directly into Connor's mouth. This continued for quite a while, and we had a good laugh over how Will kept the crackers coming and Connor just sat there with his mouth open waiting for Will to feed him.

And finally, a picture of the moms and the boys, and a picture of Will and his mom and grandma.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


Grandma and Grandpa got this toy synthesizer for a dollar at a garage sale, and it is about the best spent dollar ever, at least as far as Will is concerned. Sorry for the voice-overs.

Perhaps Will was inspired by his rockin' family? Or a certain inspirational hairdo/musician we recently saw in concert?

PS - The video is finally working (sorry, sometimes youtube takes awhile), and Erin reminded me that he actually took a very cute bow after his last song (the one where he has the costume change - following the triumphant "yaaah!"). Really too bad we didn't catch that on video.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Will's new potty chair

According to the books and potty training experts (Aunt Sara), Will is approaching the age of potty training. We've been slowly easing into the training by taking steps to help him recognize when he has to go to the bathroom, like asking him if he pooped his pants whenever we're sure that he has. A few weeks ago, we got him his own potty so he can practice sitting on it and reading Sports Illustrated.

imitating dad's toilet mannerisms

So he sits on it all the time now, and we encourage him to. He makes sure to sit on it before and after each bath, and gets mad when we pick him up before he's done having his sit. We've also been working on a technique called the "tuck" - following advice from Aunt Sara based on her experiences cleaning up after potty-training toddlers. Will has gotten good at the tuck, so when he starts using the potty instead of just sitting on it, this will hopefully result in a higher ratio of pee in the potty and less everywhere else.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

meet my choo-choos

Will is pretty interested in trains (choo-choos, sounds like "doodoo"). He has been for a long time now - ever since he got his first choo-choo book (still one of his favorites which we bring out for long car trips). He has a few choo-choo toys, and any group of non-train toys can become a choo-choo by placing them in a row. Also, when he rides on my shoulders, we call it riding the "dad train" - similarly, Will likes to ride grandpa and uncle trains - and when Will yells "choo-choo!" and pumps his arms the dad train goes fast.

Anyway, these choo-choo bath toys have become some of his favorites, to the point that he has named them. The blue one's name is "dada", the green one's name is "dukie", and the red one's name is... "dada". That's right, there are two dadas. He consistently refers to them this way. For the record, this choo-choo is named "mama" - in the video, when I ask him which one is mama, he's confused because the mama train lives in the downstairs toybasket, not with the bathroom toys.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Lodge trip 08 wrap up

Hey everyone, it's been a very busy couple of weeks for dada, but we're getting some good pictures here in Madison so I wanted to be sure to wrap up our trip to the Lodge a few weeks ago so we can post those next week.

Will spent a lot of time playing on the porch area - you can see he has his shark tent set up here, and he also spent a lot of time playing with a wooden choo-choo that my dad and grandpa made for me when I was his age. Also, on this day someone gave him a roll of choo-choo wrapping paper and he made short work of it.

My dad was painting one of the doors a bright Cornhusker red, and he has this thing about painting noses. When we were young, and even not-so-young, he would always do this, kind of a running family gag. So Will got to have a red nose for a day.

When we aren't playing in the lake or fishing, there was lots of relaxing to do. Here Will's enjoying a book with Unky Grant.

Taking a snooze with Grandma.

Here he's rocking Guitar Hero with mom. I got this game and two guitars for my birthday, it's been a big hit.

Since Will showed he was kind of afraid of the water (or at least the mucky sand) this year, the girls got him a couple of things to encourage more fun in the water. The boat thing was pretty fun but I think Uncle Adam got more fun out of it than Will did. He did like the seahorse-innertube thing though, as long as his piggies didn't have to touch the ground.

We had so much fun that we stayed up late often and skipped a lot of baths, but when we did give Will a bath, it was a sink splashin' good time!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

bath pictures: 22 months

Hello everyone. Reporting in from Madison, where we're visiting Rah-rah and Grandma. We had a good month - Will got to go to his first baseball game, and we went on some fun trips to Anne & Sean's wedding and to the Lodge, where he did a lot of relaxing, fishing, and swimming in the lake (still at least one more post coming from that trip).

Will is quite the animated little guy now - he is quite wiggly (living up to his nickname), but affectionate - he gives us lots of hugs and kisses. He likes to clap and dance and sing and whine and just generally be silly. He has his favorite TV shows which we watch every morning together which help him with a few moves, like the one below (blastoff).

He's very interested in baseball, busses, and choo-choos. Our friends Mike and Kristin got Will these three bath-toy trains the last time we got together at Cate's house. He wasn't too into them at the time, but now they are one of his favorite toys. They're each named, also - I won't spoil the upcoming blog post too much, but one of the trains is named "dada".

Another thing we do a lot lately is TICKLE. Sometimes I'll give him a good tummy-tickling session to the point where he is laughing so hard he can hardly breathe, but he will continually sign "more" until I am worn out from tickling. He also will sneak up and tickle me a lot.

6334 visits to Will's page as of this posting.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Fishing and riding in a "busss"

My extended family, most notably my grandfathers and dad and brother Grant, are avid fishermen. When we're together at the Lodge it is common for us to get up at the crack of dawn (well, maybe not that early) and get a few hours of fishing in before the rest of the group even rolls out of bed. Well, since Grandpa and Will are best buddies and were usually the first two people awake when we were up at the Lodge, on several mornings they went fishing together.

Will has been excited about fishing with Grandpa, and has talked with him about it on the phone, since our most recent trip to Lincoln - the two of them watched a few fishing shows together, and Will still holds his arms out as wide as he can (as in "this big") to describe the fish that they saw caught. So it was very fun for him to go with Grandpa and catch fish. At first Will was a bit scared of the fish, but eventually, with help and encouragement from Grandpa, he got brave enough to touch them. By the end of the trip, before we would throw any fish back, it became a requirement that Will touch them first.

It helped Will's interest in fishing to be able to do some himself, so one day Uncle Grant and Grandpa went into town and bought Will his own little fishing pole. He had a great time carrying and casting it in the water and around the house. A couple times when we went fishing, he insisted that I fish with his pole instead of a real one...

Obviously I don't have any pictures from when just the two of them (Gramps and Will) went out in the morning because I was taking full advantage of the sleep-in opportunities. But a few times we went out together later in the day, as did Erin (who by the way, despite her crippling fear of fish is a very good sport about fishing, as long as she doesn't have to touch the fish).

In the above pictures, Will's doing "blastoff" from Little Einsteins (like he did to help the plane take off), which helps the boat go faster.

Speaking of the boat, Will had an ongoing joke with Grandpa and whoever else wanted to play throughout the trip. Just a few weeks prior, he had learned how to pronounce the consonant 's', by learning what sound a snake makes at the library. So he worked on that for awhile, and on this trip, he discovered that he could pronounce the full word "bus", including the 's' on the end - instead of the previous pronunciation: "buh!". Anyway, he was particularly pleased with himself and repeated "a bussss" a lot on this trip, so inevitably we heard a lot of "busssses" on our boat rides together. Well, at some point we tried to teach him how to say "boat", and eventually a situation came up where we pointed to a boat and asked him what it was, and he responded "a busss!"

Thus began the joke. Even though he could sort of pronounce "boat" (more like "buht!"), he thought it was funny to argue with all of us - whenever we would see a boat Will would point at it and say "a Buss!" and laugh hysterically. We'd say "no, silly, that's a boat!" and he would say "naooo, a Buss!". More laughter, on and on.

Eventually, we got Will to say his version of "fish" too - which sounds kind of like "buss" - so he could recant his fishing stories to everyone else at the Lodge. It happens that Grandpa's fishing cap has a fish on it, and Will happily pointed this out fairly often. Like he often does with my Tigers cap, several times he insisted that he get to wear Grandpa's hat with the fish on it. Then of course Grandpa has to wear Will's hat in order for everything to be just right.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Lodge trip, summer 08: relaxin' with rah-rah

This is the second summer my parents have owned a cabin up in the North Woods of Wisconsin, and since we had so much fun there all together last summer (here's a quick link guide to our trip there last summer: arriving, grandpa, waving, clothesline, swimming, bye-bye, back), we made plans early this year for my side of the family to meet up there again for a week.
We drove straight to the Lodge from Anne & Sean's wedding in Galena, IL. We weren't there 15 minutes before Will had latched on to his Grandpa (his other "Rah-rah"), and they were pretty much inseparable for the week we were there.

Here they're sharing a snack together. Also putting their piggies in the water - Will wasn't really liking walking in the lake because the sand weirded him out for some reason. But dippin' piggies is pretty fun. Also note the blue crocs (the plastic shoe things) he has on - they're the same as Grandpa's, which made them something Will very much wanted to wear.