Vegas with Babies (aka visual overload)

Even before Max was born I said to Danny that I needed to plan a vacation for our family. I needed something I could look forward to after what I assumed would be a long winter cooped up in the house with two little ones. Vegas fit the bill perfectly. Short flight. Plenty to do. Accessible for the grandparents who happily agreed to meet us there from their much sunnier climes (read: snowbirds). This trip turned out to be exactly what I needed and couldn't come soon enough!

Nothing like a change of scenery (and pace) to shake things up a bit.

Welcome to warm weather, Max, where you get to load up on sunscreen instead of layers upon layers of clothing to go outside. Palm trees, sunshine, baby giggles. Enough said.

Taking a few fun group shots while we waited for the Bellagio fountains. They didn't actually play as it was apparently too windy outside but Ben was thrilled to have Papa Ray's attention again…it had been a while since they last played together.

Exploring the butterfly gardens, also at the Bellagio, and taking in the sweet scents of the fresh flower gardens. How cool is that 3D painting? This living artwork puts my green thumb to shame... if you can even call weekly purchases of tulips worthy of a green thumb title. Yeah, not so much. But anyhow, the flowers here were stunning.

A much needed date night for Danny and I. First one since the baby was born if I recall. A delicious steak night at Mastro's Ocean Club followed by a walk down the illuminated strip.

Ben and the Grandparents riding the 'choo chop tram'. He still talks about this! My sweet boy loves planes, trains, and basically any form of transportation that will go-go-go!

Jean Phillipe - we meet again.

No shortage of things to see, eat and buy in Vegas. Our eyes were delighted, tummies were full and feet were sore.

Some fun family shots in our hotel lobby. If I could bottle the scent of Mandarin Oriental hotel and sell it I would be able to purchase one of their penthouse residences. Too bad that aroma is specially formulated exclusively for the hotel and not for sale (so I'm told). Guess we'll just have to keep coming back!

Brunch at MOzen bistro before heading home. It was tough to say goodbye to the grandparents and tough to say goodbye to the warm weather but what wonderful memories we could take home with us!


Five Months: Tasty Toes, Belly Rolls & Big Explosions

We are at the wonderful five month mark with our Maxim. I remember five months old being a really great age with Ben and I think we're in for a similar experience with Max. Routines are pretty stable, baby is happy and we're getting a bit more sleep. Yay for five months!

I had to look back at the four month post to see what sort of developments we'd actually achieved this month; it seems like there's been so much going on that something that happened six days prior is 'old hat' now. Max really likes lying on his back and playing with or nibbling on his toes. He also hoists his legs into the air a lot and then rolls to his side. Today marked the first time that he rolled completely over from back to front (and then proceeded to protest because he was stuck, haha). He still gurgles and drools and makes lots of funny squeaks and squeals. He's got a great belly laugh and enjoys when we tease him. One funny thing I noticed recently is that he will often make puffing noises when he wakes up. He'll fill up his cheeks with air, purse his lips, and then pufffffff! I think he finds it quite entertaining.

A couple weeks ago, Max had his wellness and immunization appointment and the 'little mister' weighed in at 19lbs1oz. Holy Moly! Way to go buddy! He's also 29in long which explains why we've once again moved on to the 9-12month sized pyjamas and are in size 4 diapers. Just to compare, Ben wears a size 5 diaper right now and he is two years old! Speaking of diapers (yup, I'm going there) Max has been exploding out of his diapers 2-3 times a day for almost two months now. I'm rather tired of changing his outfits multiple times a day and scrubbing out already ruined onesies. Serious power with that kid. We've tried everything short of full body saran wrap. Uuugh - can't wait until this particular phase has passed, haha!

We've been putting Max in the crib in the nursery a few times at night but he still usually sleeps in our room. Still very much a mama's boy and likes having me near by. He'll do a good five hour stretch and then wake up almost every hour afterwards until we officially get up for the day. The five hour stretch is nice and he's usually fairly easy to put down during the waking up phase, unless he's not, in which case I hand him over to Dad. Your turn!

This month we did our best to keep entertained during one of the longest winters in recent memory. We organized a few playdates with our friends to get out of the house and explore. Max likes the change of scenery but hates the car rides getting there. Max also took his first every plane ride when we went down to Las Vegas for a few nights to visit with my folks and break up the monotony of our day to day routine. I was so much less worried about traveling with a baby having done it before with Ben and not surprisingly it went pretty smoothly. The flight back was slightly more challenging as Max was way too distracted to remember how nurse (seriously?) but he didn't fuss too much and eventually fell asleep. Cannot complain. The next trip could be treacherous or wonderful. That's the joy of unpredictability!

As I alluded to before, we are so ready for winter to be over and spring to show its sunny face. I can't wait to get outside a lot more with the boys and enjoy playing around in the sand or grass. I guess that is also dependent on our yard being landscaped but that is scheduled to happen as soon as the snow melts so bring on spring!