Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Luke the travel guide

On our way back to Albuquerque from our whirlwind of winter travel, we counted up the number of plane take-offs that Luke has experienced in the past year. Not counting in utero travel, we came up with 18 takeoffs! (which, thankfully, were all followed by smooth landings.) The fact that Albuquerque doesn't have direct flights to most of our destinations really amplifies those take-off numbers, but nonetheless, we feel that we've come a long way toward becoming savvy baby air travelers since the apprehension of our first flight with the little man. This time we were showing other parents how to strap a car seat into the airplane seats and offering some of our well-packed baby snacks!

But the travel surely hasn't all been on our end. We also counted up the number of visitors that Luke has received from the east coast. Not counting kids, there are 20 people who visited us from the East since Luke was born, and several of them multiple times! It has been such a blessing to maintain those dear relationships despite the distance, and has also given us extra impetus for visiting the many gorgeous sights this area holds.

We were reminded of both blessings once again this past weekend when we enjoyed a fun visit with Emily, a sweet friend from Princeton. Despite the unusually cold weather, we drove up to Santa Fe and toured the new history museum there and then took a snowy walk up to the La Luz trailhead in ABQ. You can see below that we decided the stroller was the safest, warmest spot for Luke on the icy road. He didn't seem to mind!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Luke on 2 legs!

No going back now -- walking has become Luke's primary mode of self-transport. That cute crawling move is now just a means to get to a wall, toy, or piece of furniture where he can pull up to standing and walk to his next destination. I've even seen him trying to stand up from a sitting position in the middle of the floor, but I don't think he's had success in that endeavor yet. It's cute to see his awkward unsteady gait and so sweet to have him walk into our arms with a big smile on his face. But he requires extra-sharp supervision as he's always just a moment away from tumbling down and banging his head on furniture or the floor.

He can now also travel by sitting atop his fire truck ride-on toy and pushing with his legs! For a couple weeks he's been enjoying wild rides atop the truck in which Daddy pushes a seated Luke all over the house. But we were all surprised last night when he started pushing himself around using his feet without any difficulty! Unfortunately he can't manage to steer it properly yet, but it's still a very independent new talent!

Luke has also recently experienced his first major stomach bug, complete with one particularly spectacular incident of vomiting all over Mommy. I wanted to cut my shirt off instead of having to lift it over my head! Another milestone met, but not one we hope to repeat any time soon.

Our Luke-man seems to have quite a social personality. He loves attention and hams it up whenever he has an audience. He's quickly taken to various crowd-pleasing tricks, and the one that always gets the most laughs is 'dancing with his head'. You can view our favorite video of this move here along with a little showcase of his blinking and peek-a-boo games. He definitely understands the connection between dancing with his head and music, so when a toy starts singing or we walk into a store playing music he's likely to start up the head-dancing to our delight and endless amusement.

Luke also loves to play the point and explore game. Frequently pointed at items include the blinds, leaves, Christmas lights, and photographs. It's neat to see him grow in being able to communicate with us and investigating his world. This growing awareness has also resulted in a sharing impulse. When he's drinking his bottle he often tips it up toward our mouths, offering us a tasty, slobbery sip. We are also frequently tempted by mushed-up avocado and soggy crackers! And when he wants us to play with him he holds out a book or toy toward us, wanting us to come take it from him. How can you say no to such a generous gentleman?