Halloween Photos

March of the (Halloween) Penguin

Today marks Finn’s first Halloween! Though he’s too young for candy, he’s definitely up for sporting a cute penguin costume and being strolled around town by his parents. All the shops along our neighborhood’s main street take part in a big Halloween trick-or-treat event, so we got Finn suited up and ready to show off. Margot strolled him down to Lincoln Ave., where they were met by at least a few thousand parents and their costumed children.
The orange Bob made a perfect penguinmobile, and they wove their way through sidewalks choked with pirates, Elmos, ladybugs, princesses, monkeys, lions, tigers, and bears–oh my! (There were even a couple of Dorothys and Scarecrows.) Our Finny was the only penguin on parade and got many compliments on his soft, fuzzy outfit. Margot and Finn ran into our friends Mira & Anja (dressed as a strawberry), and Heidi & Liam (a sock monkey). Here are some pics (HTML) from the day.
Soon we’ll be facing the onslaught of trick-or-treaters that descend on our neighborhood every year. We’re stocked with 400 pieces of candy, so hopefully no one will go home empty-handed!


Stats for Enormo-Boy

“At 8 months: your child is 22.5 pounds, and that is at the 97th percentile for weight.
your child is 30 inches, and that is at greater than the 97th percentile for height.
your child has a head circumference of 18 inches, and that is at the 93th percentile for head circumference.”
“He is a two-and-a-half-foot, seven-toothed man-mountain,” says Dad, shaking his fist slowly with delight. 🙂
Meanwhile, and probably not coincidentally, Finn has taken to trying to climb up me while I hold him. Seeing him kicking at a bee today in the stroller, I was reminded of the mighty Kong swatting at planes!


Let Me Stand Next To Your Squire

Loving wordplay as I do, I sometimes (okay, often) morph Finn’s nickname “squirrel” into “squire,” making him our little Squire. The other day I decided to learn what, exactly, a squire is and does (or did). According to Wikipedia, “The typical duties of a squire [i.e. things Dad will now expect of Finn] included:

  • Carrying the knight’s dad’s armor, shield, and sword,
  • Holding any prisoners the knight dad takes,
  • Rescuing the knight dad should the knight dad be taken prisoner,
  • Taking the knight dad to safety should the knight dad be injured,
  • Replacing the knight’s dad’s sword if it broke or was dropped,
  • Replacing the knight’s dad’s horse with a new horse or the squire’s should the horse be injured or killed,
  • Dressing the knight dad in his armor,
  • Carrying the knight’s dad’s flag,
  • And protecting the knight dad if needed.”

Alright! I think I’m really going to get into having my own squire. 🙂


Finn’s New Friends

This weekend, Finn made some new friends. John’s friend Abbas, from Adobe in Toronto, is in town with his wife Kaniz and their super-adorable daughter Samarah. Samarah was born 20 days after the Finnfatha, and Abbas is an avid blogger, so while Finn and I have seen Samarah and her parents in many pictures online, we hadn’t met them in the flesh! It was so fun for both families to meet–it was like a mutual admiration society of cute kids and their obsessive parental photo bloggers.
As you’ll see in the accompanying gallery (HTML), everyone was feeling a little feisty after lunch! Samarah makes the same “baby monster” growls that Finn does; they just come out a little cuter and pinker :). She also enjoys chomping on Abbas’s nose when it’s nearby. Abbas and Finn were also cracking each other up. Between the two of them it was a dimple jamboree!


Squealin’ 4 Praties

When our friend Maria visited a couple of weeks ago (man, time is flying), she decided to try her hand at a little squirrel-feeding. Finn sang for his supper throughout, then sought to wash down the potatoes (aka “praties” in our book Jamie O’Rourke and the Big Potato) with a delicious bite of video camera.


All By His Own Self!

Major physical developments today, folks! We put the little Mr. down for his nap this morning, and lo and behold, as we watched him on the monitor, he sat himself up and laid himself down three times! This is a big first for Finn. He has been working diligently to figure out how to get to sitting from lying down, and it usually entails grabbing one of our hands so he has something to pull against. Not anymore!
Next step (we hope): coordinating all the movements that result in crawling. He’s got all the individual pieces nailed, he just hasn’t pulled them all together into locomotion yet.


Cutting to the Chase

I’ve been adding more and more items to Finn’s diet, since he seems keenly interested in all things edible. He is always lunging for our food, and since that’s not really an option (tortilla chips anyone? How ’bout an apple or cup of hot tea?), I figure I can at least start offering some more advanced baby-friendly chow than he’s been eating. I’d be getting a little weary of pureed everything if I were him.
Yesterday he got to try some Yo Baby banana yogurt, as well as some Cheerios. I, of course, was trying to get Finn to pluck the Cheerios out of my hand with his fingers…practicing his fine motor skills and all. Yeah, well that lasted for about 2 Cheerios and then our boy just cut right to the chase. Leaned over and stuck his open mouth right on top of my palm, hoovering up the few remaining Cheerios with gusto. Take that, pincer grasp! It was absolutely hilarious.


Mama Mia!

Big news from Finnland, today, dear readers!
Finn’s been working on “talking”, by mimicking us, hooteling, and practicing different sounds. Carol, our babysitter, has been trying to get him familiar with “mama” and “dada” lately, and…drumroll please…Today while Carol and I were “talking” to him in the crib, he said “mama”! Twice! And very distinctly!
Now I realize that he may not associate that word with me, but I have to say, it was absolutely thrilling to hear it come out of his mouth. Now I’m obsessed with trying to coax him into saying it again!
[Man, I feel left out! I missed the alleged utterance (though I could hear something going on in the other room), but in any case, I now have to work on getting Finn into his “Dada-ist” phase! –J.]


I Gotta Be Me

Finn is discovering that he is a “me.” Over the past couple of weeks, in ways subtle and obvious, we’re seeing him realize that he has a self. He has gotten mad a couple times when we–or another child–have taken something out of his hands, either because it wasn’t a safe thing to chew on, or the other kid wanted her toy back. He furrows his brow and gets frustrated when he doesn’t get what he wants (“Gee, I wonder where he gets that trait?”, I asked, knowing that the answer was “from both parents!”).
He can’t talk yet, but we can tell that when he gets frustrated, he’s thinking “Hey! You’re taking that from ME! You’re walking away from ME!” We’re trying to encourage him to crawl during the few instances where he rolls onto his belly, and he just doesn’t want any part of it. “Hey! No fair! You’re not picking ME up off my stomach so I can practice walking! What gives?”
And tonight, for the first time in several weeks, he had a bedtime meltdown and got so absolutely Angry (note the capital “a”) when I would come in to check on/try to settle him but not pick him up out of the crib. I could see in his eyes he was angry, thinking “You’re leaving ME alone to cry in here! I don’t care if it’s bedtime! Don’t leave me alone!” I love the little bugger and we’ve had such uneventful, lovely bedtime experiences with Finn that we’re not used to him doing anything but rolling over and going to sleep. It killed me to see him so mad. Thank goodness he finally fell asleep…leaving us to wait for more “me” sightings tomorrow.

Halloween Photos

Pumpkins Great & Small

We took Finn out to a local pumpkin patch this weekend, to see what he’d think of all the enormous orange gourds amidst the hay bales. Since he’d just awoken from a nap (to coordinate our outing with our neighbors Long, Suzanne, and their 8-week old daughter Madison), he was pretty spaced out most of the time.
Check out the photo gallery (HTML) and you’ll see that he certainly gave Fat Albert a run for his money. If he could speak, he would definitely have said “Hay hay hay!,” while he tried to poke handfuls of the stuff into his mouth. And having experimented unsuccessfully with eating a lone Cheerio the other day, Finn decided to cut out the middleman, eating whole grains right off the sheaf. John says our little hayseed is really going against the grain (ba-dum, tssch!).


The Newest F.O.S.

This weekend, our friend Maria Brenny, a.k.a. “Maria-Upon-Hallmark”, flew in from Kansas City . We may need to change her moniker to Maria F.O.S. (Friend of Squirrel), based on her recent antics with Finny.
Maria’s in California to do some freelance photography, and she pitstopped in S.J. to spend some time with us and meet Finn. We had a great time, and worked in as many laughs and as much jargon-slinging as possible. She snapped some really nice shots of our little threesome, and we got a few cute ones with her and Finn. Here’s the gallery (HTML).
We didn’t have a chance to play Scrabble or fill her in on all of our current slang, so she’ll just have to come back for another visit!


Tubmaster General

Wagons, Ho!
Finn is very interested in practicing his walking, and he even has a little Radio Flyer wagon to balance against while he pushes it. He’s getting so good he almost doesn’t need one of us to steady him! When he got kind of pooped out the other day, I popped him in there with his little bear (who was also sporting a blue stripy shirt much like Finn’s) and gave them a ride.
Of course the little guy works up a sweat (or at least gets his paws pretty dirty), so baths are essential. Now that Finn has migrated to the “big boy bathtub”, we have our very own “Ballintubber Abbey,” complete with stained glass window. (This of course makes a bathtime Finn our Ballintubber Abbot!).
Here are some pics from his recent adventures (HTML), both in and out of the tub.


Little Green Riding Hood

We’ve had a fun weekend with Mr. Finn, a.k.a. Little Green Riding Hood. He has this little outfit that’s called a “sleep’n’play”, complete with hood. I guess it’s the hood that turns it into “‘n’play” instead of just pj’s. As we were cavorting with him on Saturday (all of us in pj’s) we snapped these pics (HTML).
Finn had his first bath in the real “big boy” bathtub this weekend, too. We thought he might be freaked by the vastness of the tub, but he absolutely loved it. There was lots of splashing, squealing, and even some pseudo-backstroking.
Today I went to the spa today with my friend Mira for a few hours of soaking, scrubbing, saunaing, and relaxing. It was great, and while we were away, Finn and John went to a place called Rancho San Antonio with Mira’s husband Bruce and daughter Anja. It’s popular for parents and kiddies (we call it a stroller derby) because you can stroll in the great outdoors at a working farm and see lots of different farm animals. John says there were lots of “big turkeys” wandering around the farm, and I’m pretty sure he means actual birds, not just middle-management Silicon Valley types. Sounds like the boys had a fun time. I came back from the spa with skin almost as soft as Finny’s!

Milestones Photos

Magnificent Seven

Seven months, seven teeth! The Finnster has been with us 215 days (!) and just keeps getting better and better. 🙂
Today he took me on a little walking tour of the back yard, taking his first steps on grass. Finn is way into all things stringy/fringy/frilly these days, and the grass really threw him for a loop. First he stood on his left foot, pawing the grass inquisitively with his right, after which he switched sides and pawed with the left. Once he found his footing (literally), Finn took me on a culinary tour of all the backyard plants, attempting to snack on each one we passed.
Here’s a little gallery (HTML) of the guy taken over the last few days. Seeing him nicely lit as he sat on the “Dipetorium,” I exclaimed, “Finn, dude, you’ve gotta warn me if you’re gonna be radiating that much cuteness. I’ve gotta have time to prepare!”


“The Finest Cut of the Finny”

Our prime directive with FInny right now is to ensure that as much hilarity as possible ensues when we’re all together. There is always a lot of singing, whistling, making funny noises, and other assorted shenanigans for our 26-inch tall audience. In the clip above, Finn was walking the line between tired-fussy and overstimulated-happy. I chose to err on the side of more stimulation and possible laughs, and what better place to start than the belly button?