Wednesday, 27 August 2014

13 months old!



I was going to bail on these little monthly updates, but now I am thinking I will be grateful to be able to look back on what was going on with Cohen each month. Especially since he is changing so much all the time! So, lately:

- Cohen has taken a few steps here and there, but that's it. Still loving the crawling very fast

- He loves to say "dad" whenever he sees Jon, and now he says "dog" anytime he hears barking or sees the neighbor's dog. The other morning he put my iPhone up to his ear and said hello, and Jon and I flipped! It was so cute, and it came out more like "dull-Oh."

- He refuses to sit and let us read to him before bed these days. He's way too busy throwing every book, diaper, and blanket on the floor before bed. He will throw all his diapers on the floor one by one, then he will slowly put them all back, then repeat. 

- Favourite foods: Bread, buns, muffins, scones. Basically any kind of baked good. He also loves black beans from a can. 

- Favourite activity: The slide at the playground. We try to visit every day. Bonus if we bike there. He loves bike rides on the back of his dad's bike. 

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Hotel review: Quality Hotel Harbourview

On the weekend we stayed at the Quality Hotel in St. John's while we were in town for J's triathlon. We took Cohen to the Aquarena, which is this aquatic centre that has a huge kiddy pool with warm water. Cohen completely loved it. We have started sitting him on the side of the pool and letting him fall in so his head it completely underwater. I was scared at first, but he loves it. His face is submersed for maybe 2 seconds, and when he comes up, he has such a big smile on his face. So cute. Anyway, this hotel:





Price: For our smallish room, it came to around $260 including tax for the night. Average for downtown St. John's.
Bathroom: Old. The tub was really scratched up and beige, and everything just seemed a little dirty.
Pool: Nope.
Breakfast: Nope. Apparently there is a buffet breakfast in the restaurant attached to the hotel, but we didn't check it out, and it wasn't included.
Wifi: So good. We even watched some Netflix with no problem.
TV: Good. I ended up watching this Suze Orman show about finances. I dunno.
Location: Awesome. Right downtown. We love being able to put Cohen in the stroller in the room, and just walk right out to downtown for a coffee and shopping.
Parking: They have a parking garage, and it is included with your room. Not bad.

Notes: So as soon as we got there, I walked in to the bathroom, and got a tiny piece of glass stuck in my foot. We thought it was weird, but whatever. Then it happened to Jon. So I looked, and the bathroom had a ton of tiny shards of glass everywhere. I talked to the front desk and requested a new room, mostly because Cohen is a crawler. There were no other rooms, so they instead went in with a vacuum and gave us the room for free. I still had to get down on my hands and knees and pick up tiny bits of glass later, but I thought they dealt with the problem pretty well. It turned out that the last guest had dropped a glass on the ceramic tile. We would definitely stay at this hotel again, because we were so happy with the quick and apologetic way they dealt with our issue.

Monday, 25 August 2014

Pictures from triathlons

(pre-race)


(transitions) 


(early morning at the shore of Jonathan's pond) 


(waiting for dad) 


(post-race) 


(family selfie) 


(dock-sitting at Octagon pond) 


(looking strong) 


(post-race with our little puppy) 


(Cohen with his dad's medal)

J's race season was short and sweet this year. I love having a little dude with me as I try to catch J at each transition. I am so proud of both my little and big guy. 

Friday, 22 August 2014

What's up, Gander?

Gander got kind of awesome since we moved away a year ago. Luckily, it is only a short less-than-two-hour drive away, so we can visit all the time. 

(Cohen in the pond with Jon after a quick tri training session)


(swinging at the new and improved Cobb's Pond) 

(fancy new loungers at Cobb's) 


(family selfie) 


(the splash pad. He hated it. Then he loved it) 


(so fun)


We always thought Gander was cool, but it definitely got cooler. They fancied up the community park in a big way. We hung out at Cobb's pond A LOT (here, here, here), and I am so happy to see the facelift. We returned to the hotel we stayed at last time, which has gone downhill in a big way. Downhill as in huge piles of smelly garbage in the stairwell, actual huge clumps of dirt all over the hallway for the duration of our stay, an odd pile of leather jackets and lamps chilling by the main entrance, the most terrible cat food-like smell everywhere. Some pics, just for fun:

(sweet pattern on the couch)

(so old)

(the pool that may have been nice at some point, but is now full of black liquid)

(the dude, relaxing in the morning)

Thursday, 21 August 2014

Back

(Cohen loves playgrounds these days)

We just had the best week. Last friday we headed to Gander for two awesome nights. Then on Sunday my best friend from high school came for a visit. There is nothing like friends that knew you when you were 17. More pics to come, of course.

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Our vacation: PEI cottage time

(The babes) 

(Both babes having a snack) 

(Cohen and his uncle in the (not-hot-at-all) hot tub) 

(my boys at Cavendish beach) 

(family selfie at the beach) 

(Cohen's first amusement park ride, the train at Sandspit. Not impressed) 

(naptime, snacktime) 

(brother races) 

(shopping on the boardwalk) 

(Cottage number five) 

(red sand) 

(waiting for Beavertails)

We spent a week in Cavendish at the Maple cottages. We stayed in one of the little two-bedroom cottages, which was perfect for us, and my sister and her fiancĂ© and baby for a few nights. I am not going to do my usual review, but I will say that there are a ton of cottages in Cavendish, but these ones have a lot of trees, therefore shade, which is a precious commodity when you have a little babe. I saw a lot of cottages with not a tree in sight. Something to think about if you are planning a Cavendish vacation. 

What I loved about these cottages was that there is a nice big pool 20 feet from the front door, as well as a nice sized kiddie pool and hot (lukewarm) tub. Since Cohen naps twice a day, we were going back and forth a lot during the day, which worked out perfectly. Cohen also spent some time on the slides and in the sandbox area. This place is really kid-friendly. 

Cavendish is super duper touristy. You just have to embrace it. We did the boardwalk, the Cows ice cream, the beach, Sandspit, the lobster restaurants, the works. Everything is so close that you can squeeze a lot in between naps. 

Cohen's nap schedule meant that J and I had a few hours of alone time every day. I read magazines, ate ice cream, people watched. It was awesome. Sometimes Jon and I sat and had a coffee, and sometimes Jon trained for his upcoming triathlon. My sister and I talked about important stuff like what brands of clothes we wore in high school, and who is pregnant from our hometown. 

Our little dude actually got pretty sick while we were traveling to PEI. He had diarrhea (oh my gosh, there are so many adjectives I could use for his diarrhea. Really, it was so sad, and his tummy must have been in quite a state) and was throwing up in the car on the drive. He didn't feel like eating much of anything except hamburger buns for the first few days. He even refused birthday cake. But he was super cuddly, which was the best. What a little trooper. 

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Our vacation: the transportation

(loving the kids area at YYT) 

(selfie) 

(snacks on the plane) 

(NB) 

(Cohen and Ted) 

(Our fav) 

(the rock!) 

(helping with the luggage) 

(love them)

Notes:

For this trip, we took 4 flights and drove for around 12 hours. Pretty typical for us and anyone who lives in NL, really. We find that the challenges of traveling with Cohen change pretty dramatically every time we take a trip. On past trips, I was  always thinking about nursing during take off and landings, and hoping that Cohen would nap for the majority of the driving. Now, we are always trying to keep Cohen occupied so he doesn't get whiney, and keep him from getting hungry. I brought about a million snacks, including things that I usually don't give Cohen, like sugary cereal and sweets. We brought a few toys, and we brought the iPad. 

The airports: In the past, I barely noticed those play structures for kids at airports. We didn't really even notice them this time, but Cohen beelined for it. He was in love. We were in love. He was completely occupied for over an hour. So awesome. We took turns standing near him so as to look like responsible parents, and read magazines.

The driving: The best thing that has happened to our road trips lately is that Cohen can legally sit facing forward.  At home with our usual carseat and mirror, Cohen will be rear-facing for probably another year. But on vacation, without our usual stuff, we switched the car seat to forward. Cohen loved being able to look around. And. We could position the iPad between our seats so he could watch his shows without being able to touch the iPad. The best. 

Side note: I need to share what I have recently learned about iPads and babies. If your baby loves to watch certain youtube videos, and you want to be able to watch them while there is no Wifi, this is what you do: Download the app Instatube. It costs $2.99, which will be the best three bucks you have ever spent. "Cache," aka save whatever videos you want in the app. Then watch them over and over as needed with no internet connection. Then, if your baby is always touching the screen thereby exiting out of the video they are loving, thereby getting super mad at you, this is what you do: In settings go into guided access, and in guided access you can make it so they can't touch the screen or use the home button. I learned that from Lisa, aka Jack Osbourne's wife. 

Monday, 11 August 2014

Back from vacation


We got back from our vacation last night, and before I go through my pics, I just wanted to share this one. Cohen and his cousin sitting on the bed at the cottage we stayed at in Cavendish. We had the best time, but I always love getting back home. We all slept so good last night in our own beds. Lots more pics to come.
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