Jake: 27 months + a video

Speaks his own language that cracks him right up. Favorite phrase: "gah-sheesh!" (and repeat 100x). Turns out boys get weird at a really young age. I thought I had a few more years.

He still loves to be "baby burrito'd" after bath time, only now instead of yelling "baby burrito", he repeats that new favorite phrase, see above.

Memorized Psalm 27:14 a few weeks ago-- "Wait for the Lord; be strong, take heart, and wait for the Lord." Complete with little motions, I about combust when he says it. But that's fewer and far between lately as he's becoming *slightly* less compliant these days. So my hopes of sneakily recording him saying the verse are about 0 in 1,000.

His standard reply to almost anything we say is "Oh."
"You've already had a snack."
"I asked you to stop."
"Your shoe goes on the other foot."

Jake told Deric and I the other day, "Daddy's big and I'm little". Too true dude.

Skipping over entire shoe sizes lately, resulting in the most frustrating search for non-Croc shoes for the fall. I've ordered (and returned) no less than eight pairs of shoes online, and still have yet to find a pair that fits well, don't have characters on them, and are inexpensive. Why are kids shoes just as expensive as adults?!

I've asked him a few times what he wants to be for Halloween, since I know he has no idea what I'm talking about, by saying "Would you rather be a farmer or a cowboy?" (pirate/astronaut/etc.). He replied with farmer so I asked him what a farmer does and he said, "Take the pigs to the barn, and the cows, and the chickens. Never forget the pigs." Where does he get that?? Hilarious.

And bonus! A video of Jake and Deric playing one of the many games Deric invents out of thin air. This one is simply knocking down bath toys with the ball and is just too funny when you're two and have zero aim.

Bath Time with Dad from Ashley Skinner on Vimeo.


Port Hope 2015

This year's Port Hope week was certainly memorable, more so than other years. For starters, we were without power from Sunday afternoon until Tuesday afternoon, the longest I have ever experienced being without power. Thankfully we had a gas stove and a gas water heater and my parents' house doesn't have AC anyways, so it really wasn't too noticeable to be without power (until I took a look in the mirror at my air-dried hair;)). At first we thought we would be without power for the majority of the week so we did get to the point where we (well, Mom) did laundry outside, actually putting those old washboards to use. I was napping when the power came back on unexpectedly and I could hear everyone outside yelling "The power's back on! The power's back on!" It was quite the celebration. ;)

This year was also probably the biggest work project that's been undertaken in a while. Dad and the brothers-in-law got a ton of work done on the outside of the store across the street (that will hopefully be a restaurant within the year!) as they put up siding and framed out columns. Even just halfway done, the store looks so different and so good. Its exciting to see the progress being made and to dream of the end product!

The rest of the week was full of all those things we look forward to each year: walks across the street for ice cream cones, playing outside all day, driving around town on the Mule and taking bike rides, playing with vintage toys at Grandad Dean and Grandma Carol's house, and dinners spent out in the party barn with the entire family, all with blessedly cool weather as the backdrop. It was fun to see Jake really interact with his aunts and uncles and great aunts and uncles this year, as opposed to last year when he wasn't talking yet. He had everyone's names down by the end of the week and would talk everyone's ear off whenever he had the chance. I've never seen him warm up to people so quickly! Seriously, when he sees our neighbors at church (who babysit him every Wednesday) he still acts shy around them. So I was amazed to see him jump right into conversation with all his aunts and uncles.

We toured the depot with Grandad Dean, which Jake was pretty excited to see. We celebrated Cana's third birthday with hot fudge sundaes and tie dye attire for the 5-and-under crowd. Jake was allll about Isaac and Cana this year. Every time he entered a room and saw Isaac, he'd say "HI!" and tell him all about what he was just doing or show him what he was holding. Isaac was so gracious to humor him each time. ;) And man, if I thought Jake's vocabulary was exploding before, its nothing compared to now after a week with his cousins! (And he's still talking about all those ice cream cones!)

As always, I come home from Port Hope seriously missing all my family and those 70 degree days. Thankfully we get to see everyone again at Christmas, rather than waiting an entire year!


can't hardly wait

Jake and I have been in Port Hope for the last few days while Deric is in Michigan at a CIY conference. We've been helping Mom get the house (and garden!) ready before everyone else gets here, most of them in just a few hours!

I'd been prepping Jake for Port Hope over the last few weeks and pointing out the highlights: riding the tractor, getting ice cream cones across the street, and playing with all of his cousins and aunts and uncles (and great aunts/uncles/grandparents too!). It's hard to believe that last year in Port Hope, Jake was taking some of his first steps to Grandad for licks of his ice cream cone, and this year he is running circles (literally, check my Instagram!) and talking to everyone about everything. I have a ridiculous number of photos from last year but Jake is much less thrilled to have his picture taken now so here's hoping I get at least a few grins caught on camera! We're so excited for the rest of the family to get here!

too many hours in the car with a two year old

Mom, Jake and I made the drive from Knoxville to Michigan by the skin of our teeth. Jake made it within seven miles of Port Hope before he just couldn't take it anymore, so that was a pretty successful trip. Throughout the trip he would say "Mommy, I need something!" He never knew what he needed but I'm thinking he just needed to be out of the car. I feel us, buddy. At one point we were stopped for about thirty minutes and Jake got to climb around in the car. He was elated to be out of his seat that he willingly took pictures with me, a definite first! At dinner we faced off in a game of Checkers. Jake's strategy was um, unique, but considering I always lose, what do I know?


blueberry picking

Friday morning started out overcast and slightly cooler than sweltering so we headed out to pick blueberries. Of course as soon as we got there, the sun came out and it got miserably hot but we powered through long enough to pick three pounds, no thanks to Jake! He probably ate about three pounds worth while Deric and I did most of the picking. Ok, Deric did most of the picking since his wingspan really came in handy to get all the blueberries at the very top of the bushes. I mostly followed Jake to make sure he wasn't eating the unripe berries or any off the ground but he was pretty good about only eating the blue ones. We asked Jake what he wanted to make with the blueberries and he requested muffins, so on Saturday morning we made blueberry oatmeal muffins for breakfast. I'm sure we'll be back to visit the blueberry patch every summer now that Jake is able to help pick berries, not that any of them actually make it home. ;)