One More Week Till Christmas

Oh my. Really? Already? As much as I always look forward to Christmas, it’s hard to believe it’s only one more week away. One week from today is Christmas Eve! It makes me think of my pregnancy. As excited as I was to welcome Nathan into our lives, I couldn’t believe it when our due date actually arrived. Time spent in joyful expectation can pass so quickly. It doesn’t always, but sometimes, we blink and entire days (or weeks!) seem to have passed.

We’ve been keeping busy in our home getting ready for Christmas – and Nathan’s first one at that. The tree is set up as are our Christmas nativities and other decorations. It’s nice to eat breakfast when it’s still dark by the light of the Christmas tree. Nathan smiles and sighs every time we turn on the Christmas tree lights. It makes me smile to see his simple delight.

I’ve been baking but still have more to do. I’ve made a batch of caramel corn, peanut clusters, spritz cookies and two batches of buckeyes. More buckeyes are on the list as well as another batch of caramel corn. I also need to finish my menu planning for all our upcoming Christmas parties.

My piano students had their annual Christmas recital last Sunday after late church. They did a nice job. It’s a slightly smaller group (8 students) but they all played well. I was most proud that even with mistakes, they kept playing. I also was pleased that we had an audience that included non-family members this year.

Yesterday, I took advantage of a good coupon and an open afternoon to get Nathan’s (almost) 9 month pictures taken. He showed off his nice smiles although some of my favorites were his more serious ones. He’s changed so much since we last had his pictures taken at 3 months.

Nathan at 9 Months Collage

Tonight is the school children’s Christmas service. We are leading our final Advent service revolving around the theme, “O Christmas Tree: Reveal to Us the Savior.” We sing 8 different verses of “O Christmas Tree.” To help us remember all of them, I taught the children how to sign the verses in ASL so we’ll be singing and signing tonight. Last year, I was sick with the flu and missed the service so I’m thankful to be back and directing. I’m also thankful for a wonderful organist who will do all the accompanying.

Tomorrow is my final music class before our Christmas vacation begins. Andy still has to teach through the 23rd but I will done for this year. It will be a fun music class since our service will be over.

This weekend starts the Christmas parties. My faculty party is this Friday, although we missed Andy’s due to scheduling conflicts. Then, we have his Mom’s family party this Saturday and his Dad’s family get together next Saturday. Also, we’re excited to have good friends from Houston staying with us this weekend while they visit their family in town. I’m sure we’ll be up late visiting (as late as we can be with two babies between us).

Yes, there is still (a tiny bit) of shopping to do and presents to wrap. My house needs cleaned and menus prepared. In spite of my to-do list, I’m focusing on taking time to savor this Christmas season with Nathan. I’ll be posting sporadically on this blog as I enjoy this time with my boys. The to-do lists will get done. (And what doesn’t get done probably didn’t need to be done in the first place!) Celebrate CHRISTmas with your loved ones. Rejoice in our Savior’s birthday! That is on the top of our list!

More of Nathan at 9 Months

Thanksgiving Musings

Oh my. Has it really already been a week since Thanksgiving? I know I’ve been a bit scarce around here, but we were keeping busy at home and away. It really was a wonderful Thanksgiving. Here’s a bit of a recap.

My siblings arrived late on Tuesday night and early on Wednesday morning. It was so good to see everyone, see how big the nieces and nephews have grown, and meet our newest nephew, Mateo. My parents flew in on Thanksgiving evening and the whole Barz family was together again – all 15 of us.

We caught up on one another’s lives, ate delicious meals and lots of desserts, played with the children, read stories to the babies, stayed up late (the adults) and woke up early (with the babies), ate some more, laughed, and played in the dusting of snow. We went to church on Thanksgiving Day and enjoyed two Thanksgiving meals, complete with turkey and all the fixings. We made the most of our short time together. It was lovely. Absolutely lovely.

Nathan's First Thanksgiving 2014

All too soon, it was time to say goodbye. I didn’t have time for tears since Nathan and I left first with my parents to drive to Michigan. We went to the first church were my father was Pastor. It was interesting to be back and compare what my childhood memories were to reality. I was especially glad that my parents had the opportunity to go back, and thankful that I could accompany them – especially to see the Boar’s Head Festival again.

Nathan was a (mostly) a good traveler but his schedule and sleep were quite disrupted. We didn’t get home until 10pm on Monday evening and I taught on Tuesday. Wednesday, Nathan woke with a slight temperature and wanted to cuddle most of the day. He kept laying his head on my shoulder throughout the day and slept in my arms for three naps that day. This morning, it was time for MOPS and to teach again. The Christmas service is coming along! Oh, yes, handbells played in Advent worship on Wednesday evening, and I’m slowly but surely making order of our house again.

It’s hard to believe a week has passed since Thanksgiving and that we are only three weeks away from Christmas. I love this time of year and I want to savor it. It’s time for me to sit down and make a list. There is lots to do but I plan to take the time to enjoy it all. The boxes will wait when my baby needs cuddles. I’m learning how to balance it all, this season and always in life. I have to balance the need to do with the want to do. For that reason, I’m making myself a list. More to come, but for now? This thankful Mom is off to bed!

Our Thanksgiving Week

Thanksgiving Plans and Menu - Joyfully Thriving

It’s Thanksgiving week! Already? Yes, already, and we are indeed thankful! This is going to my last post for the week because it will be a wonderfully busy week at our house. Andy and I have been busy getting our house ready for our company. Here are our plans for Thanksgiving this year.

Early Tuesday morning, my sister, Liesl, arrives with her husband and 4 children from North Carolina. They are driving through the night to get here. I’ll still take Nathan to his Grandma’s for the afternoon while I teach music, so they can rest from the travel. Late Tuesday evening (probably around midnight or so), my brother, Joel, arrives from St. Louis. He will drive with our sister, Mikaela, and her husband and their new baby.

Wednesday, we have plans for the children to visit Science Central with the guys while the girls (and babies) go shopping for bargains! We’ll enjoy being together. I don’t think there will be much sleeping late with 6 children in the house – especially since 3 of those are babies under the age of 7 months!

On Thursday, we’ll go to Thanksgiving worship at Ascension. Afterwards, all of us will go to my in-laws for Thanksgiving dinner. All 3 of Andy’s siblings will be home for Thanksgiving as well. It will be a full house! On Thanksgiving evening, my parents fly into Fort Wayne from San Antonio. Then, the entire Barz family will be together!

Friday, we’re going to have another Thanksgiving meal for lunch at our house. Turkey, stuffing and all the traditional sides! We’ll have the Whirretts over for an evening meal of chili…and leftovers.

Saturday is our last day together, so we’re going to try and get a professional picture taken of my parents with their now 6 grandchildren. We’ll see how it goes! After lunch, we’ll all start heading our separate ways. I say all, because Nathan and I will be driving with my parents to Saginaw, Michigan, for the weekend. This was what started the whole Thanksgiving get-together plans. The church where my Dad first served invited their former Pastors to come back and preach this year for their 100th anniversary. Dad picked Thanksgiving weekend so we can see the Boar’s Head Festival which he helped to start at Bethlehem Lutheran. I was not quite 5 when we moved from Saginaw but I do have clear memories from my first years there. I am excited to visit again!

It will be a busy week. My menu is planned with main dishes that include poppy seed chicken, chili, the Pioneer Woman’s lasagna and, of course, a turkey. I have homemade crescent rolls in the freezer as well as frosted butter cookies and mini chocolate chip pumpkin muffins. I am going to be trying several new pumpkin recipes out, too. The food is important because we all like to eat, but more important is the fact that we will all be together.

I am looking forward to this week. We are all looking forward to it. We are indeed, truly, thankful! I pray that your Thanksgiving – no matter what you eat or whom you eat it with – is filled with joy. May all our hearts be filled with thanksgiving to God for the countless blessings He bestows upon us!

Nathan in the Gerber Baby Contest

Nathan at 6 Months

After hearing quite a few times how much Nathan looks like the Gerber baby, we decided to enter him in this year’s Gerber Baby contest! There are quite a few babies entered with a college scholarship at stake, but we think he’s pretty cute! Here’s where I come in with a personal plea because we need your help if we have a chance to win.

Would you be willing to vote for Nathan? You can vote daily for him from now until December 14th. It’s simple to do so. Go to the Gerber Photo Search website and enter your birth date and email to register. They do this to verify that all the votes are unique and all the voters over the age of 13. Then, the easiest way is to search for Nathan by his id number – 47414. When Nathan’s picture pops up, click on vote! That’s it. Of course, if you’re willing to do this daily, that increases our chances all the more. And if you’re willing to vote and share it with others? We’d be greatly appreciative! Thanks, everyone!

Nathan @ 7 Months

Nathan is 7 months old already! I’ve realized when writing these monthly updates, it is a challenge to keep details straight. Even though he’s 7 months now, I’m recording things he did last month. Here’s our sweet little boy with his 7 month picture that I took.

Nathan @ 7 Months

This month, we planned for a surprise 40th anniversary for my in-laws. My husband and all his siblings worked together to make this happen, but since I was the one at home, Nathan and I did a lot of the little details. Nathan liked the new drink bins we bought! I decided they could make a nice summer wading pool for him.

Nathan Getting Ready for our Surprise Party

In addition to spending his weekly time with his Whirrett grandparents, Nathan also spent time with his Grandpa Barz. My Dad flew to Indiana for a long weekend to serve as chaplain at a Doxology weekend. He tacked an extra day onto his travels so he could stay with us before and after. We read books, had a cook-out and even went for a brisk morning walk together with the stroller. It’s always good to see my parents!

Nathan and his Grandpa Barz

Nathan continues to be a good eater. He eats everything I put in front of him! The orange foods (carrots, squash and sweet potatoes) are favorites, as are the pears and apples. Nathan tried egg yolk from a hard boiled egg this month and really liked his first protein! We also just started Cheerios. He can’t pick them up himself quite yet but eagerly eats the ones we put in his mouth.

Nathan loves to eat!

We’ve had a gorgeous Fall here in Indiana with relatively warm days. Nathan and I were able to take our daily walks until just recently when the rain and cold temperatures arrived in full force. We finally got a picture of him in the leaves at his Great-Grandma’s house. Nathan wasn’t really sure what to think of these crunchy things that we put him in – but it makes for a nice picture!

Nathan in the Leaves

It was a cold and rainy day for Nathan’s first Halloween. His friend, Kate, loaned him her pumpkin costume that she wore last yesterday. Nathan dressed up and we went to visit Daddy at school. He skyped with his cousins in North Carolina so they could see his costume, too. Isn’t he a cute little pumpkin?

Mommy & Nathan Pumpkin

Nathan is so close to crawling! He moves backwards regularly, but just can’t quite figure out what to do with his arms just yet. He now weighs 18 pounds, 9 ounces – up almost 2 pounds in 1 month! Also, Nathan has two teeth now! He got his first tooth days before he turned 7 months, and his second one popped through four days later. Of course, he caught a cold as a result so we’ve had another rough week of sleep. It’s so hard when he just can’t breathe clear enough to sleep soundly! Thankfully, he’s still been a happy baby, regardless of lack of sleep. 7 months, here we are!

The Start of November

Well, I did it! I made it through another 31 days of writing on one single topic. Whew! It was a good month and a good challenge, but now I’m taking a breather. Well, not really because life continues on. Here’s a bit about what’s going on in my life.

Nathan cut his first two teeth this past week – one on Wednesday and the other one on Sunday. He then caught a cold. I don’t know if they are related. Some say yes, but ’tis the season for colds. As a result, we’ve had a couple sleepless nights for him – and his parents. He’s still a smiley little guy even with his nose running and eyes watering. Poor baby. Daytime has brought more cuddles as Nathan wants to be held a bit more while teething, and who am I to refuse this adorable little boy?

Nathan's 1st Halloween

I am keeping busy with music at school. I have choirs singing 3 of the 5 Sundays in November. Plus, it’s time to start working on the Christmas service. Piano lessons continue and we are choosing songs for our Christmas piano recital. That means I probably need to do some more piano music shopping as well.

Basketball season has started for my husband. Practices and games are quickly filling his calendar. We’re going to head to Indy with Andy and the team next weekend for one of their first tournaments. It’s another perk to not teaching full-time. We can go away with Daddy as he coaches!

Most importantly, we are getting ready for Thanksgiving. My entire family – all my siblings, their spouses and children, plus my parents – are coming to our house for Thanksgiving! I am already planning menus and the logistics for having a house full of 15 people – including 3 babies. I am very excited because I have not celebrated Thanksgiving with my entire family since 2001. Yes, you read that correctly. It’s been 13 years since I’ve celebrated with all of them. I am looking forward to it, even as I begin all the preparations. The whole Whirrett family will be together as well so we have a lot to be thankful for this Thanksgiving!

That’s a bit about our life at the beginning of November. Look for deals and bargains and encouragement to continue as normal! With the busy-ness of November and December upon us, I might post every day but I will be here regularly. What’s happening in your life right now? Are you looking forward to Thanksgiving and Christmas celebrations?

Nathan @ 6 Months

Before we begin October (and my Simple Savings series), I want to share this month’s update on Nathan Reagan. Look at this! I’m actually posting his update on the very day that he turns 6 months! Yay for that. Now, if I can just keep his Shutterfly baby book up to date…

We started out the month with a visit to Illinois for Nathan to meet this Barz Great-Grandparents. Nathan is blessed to have 7 of his 8 Great Grandparents still living. We know this is a blessing, especially since Andy & I married later and didn’t have Nathan right away. My Grandpa and Grandma Barz were the last ones of the 7 to meet Nathan. They were all excited to meet one another! We were glad we could spend the day with them before they returned home to Cheney, Kansas.

Meeting Great Grandparents

Nathan and I have really settled into our at home routines. One of which is a daily walk around town – or at least to the post office. The weather cooled off enough for us to zip up into jackets. Nathan does love riding in his stroller to see what he can see.

Nathan Walks

Nathan went to his first birthday party as his friend Kate turned 1! Okay, Kate’s Mom is my teacher friend, Allison. We’ve decided that, of course, our babies will be friends! We try to get together for play dates, and we enjoyed celebrating Kate’s birthday with her.

Nathan's 1st Birthday Party

Nathan loves to stand. He always has. I went to a local baby resale and picked up this exosaucer for only $9.50. It was in great condition and at a great price! Nathan absolutely loves it. I love that he can stand and play to his heart’s content.

Nathan in Exosaucer

We celebrated Andy’s birthday this month and met him at the zoo. Andy took his class on a field trip so Nathan and I helped him check the answers for the scavenger hunt he gave the kiddos. It was a fun day! I love this picture of my two boys watching for the sea lions. Andy is such a great dad!

Zoo with Daddy

The big adventure is that Nathan started eating solids, just last week! So far, we’ve introduced rice cereal followed by oatmeal. He’s tried avocado (yum) and today, gets to eat peas. As you can see from the first time he ate cereal, he was ready and eager to eat! We’ll continue with the green vegetables before orange ones, followed by fruits. And yes, I am making my own baby food. I have some jars that I bought for when we’re out and about. But for now, I’m doing homemade – because it is so much cheaper and quite easy to do, too.

Nathan Helps Feed Himself

When I weighed Nathan at the end of the month, he weighed 15 pounds, 8 ounces. He can roll over from front to back and back to front. He can sit by himself, which is very exciting! He does push-ups as he attempts to crawl already. We finally got him on a sleep schedule this month. He eats at 7am and sleeps through the night until eating at 5am. He eats again before sleeping for another hour or two. Of course, he caught his first cold this weekend (boo!) so his sleeping has been out of sorts since he’s had trouble breathing. Eating, sleeping, rolling over, sitting up – what a busy month! Happy 6 months, Nathan Reagan!

End of the Summer Garden Produce

I think that’s the last of it. I think – I hope – I just picked my last tomatoes of the season. Our garden didn’t look that big when Andy planted it, but it provided us with plenty of produce over the past couple months. We planted 8 tomato plants, a row of bell peppers and a row of onions. We also planted 2 zucchini plants and 2 cucumber plants. From that, we ate a lot of zucchini bread. Seriously, I made over 18 loaves – many of which I gave away. I also taught my husband to like sauteed zucchini. I ate a lot of veggie wraps and cooked with our fresh produce. Much of it made it’s way to our freezer. Here is a list of what I currently have in our freezer and in the pantry, thanks to a summer of fresh produce.

I froze 10 cups of grated zucchini. I grated my zucchini and froze it in 2 cup bags because each recipe for zucchini bread calls for 2 cups. This way, I can easily thaw one bag each time I want to make fresh zucchini bread. We had lots of zucchini that grew to be very large very quickly – as you can see one next to Nathan.

One of our many zucchini

I froze 10 pints of blueberries. The blueberries I flash froze and put in large gallon bags. I didn’t grow the blueberries but bought them for $1 a pint at the grocery store. They are delicious! I wish I had bought more.

I froze 8 cups of blackberries. The blackberries were from a church member’s bushes that she gave me for free. Like the blueberries, I flash froze them and put them in a large bag in the freezer.

Fresh Garden Blackberries

I canned 13 jars of blackberry jam using this recipe. I gave several jars away but I still have plenty of jars to enjoy on my toast this year.

I froze 5 diced onion bundles. I like to dice the onions ahead of time into these onion bundles so I can quickly toss them into a pan of hamburger when I’m cooking dinner. It allows me to get my hands dirty once and saves me prep time.

I froze 8 cups of diced bell peppers. I diced the peppers and flash froze them before transferring them into several quart bags in the freezer. I really like sauteing peppers with onions (and sometimes corn and black beans) and eating them in veggie wraps. It’s my new favorite!

Peppers and Zucchini

I froze 18 cups of sweet corn. One of Andy’s students shared some sweet corn from their family farm with us. Growing up in Texas, I do love the good sweet corn that we get up North! I also had fond memories of my Mom freezing corn as I cut the long strips off the cob. I followed the directions in my handy Ball Blue Book.

Sweet Corn for the Freezer

Most of my time was spent working with tomatoes. I canned over 40 pints of salsa using my Aunt Renee’s recipe. We have already eating several jars and given several away. We have 30 pints of salsa remaining in our basement pantry.

Fresh Canned Salsa

When I got tired of canning salsa, I decided to try my hand at fresh tomato sauce. I made 12 cups of tomato sauce in my slow cooker and froze it in quart bags – 2 cups of sauce in each bag. This was my first time making tomato sauce in the slow cooker and it was incredibly easy! I made it up as I went along but the results were all good!

It’s a varied assortment but I love having a stocked freezer with so many different – and fresh – vegetables and fruits. I’m not as well stocked as my Amish neighbors, I’m sure, but every year I do a bit more. It makes my happy to be preserving fresh food for my family! Did you have a garden this summer? What’s in your freezer?

Restocking My Wardrobe with Twice

Restocking My Wardrobe with Twice - a Great Bargain Shopping Trip

It was time. After having a baby, my wardrobe needed an update. I don’t buy new clothes very often and after losing the baby weight, I really wanted to update my closet. My life has dramatically changed with staying home, but that doesn’t mean I can’t look cute doing so. I’d been meaning to buy new clothes for some time, but shopping with a baby isn’t easy. Plus, I still wanted to find good bargains. It was Andrea who finally gave me the motivation to go and buy some new clothes.

I decided to shop online at Twice . Twice is an online, upscale thrift store. It has reasonable prices on name brand clothing – Gap, Limited, New York & Company, Ann Taylor, J. Crew, Express and Banana Republic, just to name a few. I thought their prices really reasonable, starting at $7.95 for a lot of the tops. Plus, the deciding factor was that just for signing up, I got a $10 credit to spend at Twice. Everyone who signs up gets a free $10 to spend right away! And for everyone who signs up through your link, you get an additional $10 to spend. Somehow my referral link got spread around online (thank you to whomever shared my link) so I already had some credit to spend, too.

I had read about Andrea’s new wardrobe and then later that week, happened to see that when you liked the Twice Facebook page, you got 50% off your first order. Here was my logic. I needed a new wardrobe. I had money to spend. There was a great coupon code. Plus, when you spent over $50, you got free shopping. So, shopping online at Twice I went!

Before I started, I thought about what I wore and what I wanted to wear. I knew I wanted comfortable tops that were plain and could be worn with my jeans or my black pants. I wanted tops that would look nice whether I’m at home with Nathan, running errands or out on a date night with Andy. I have plenty of teacher clothes but now I need SAHM clothes. What a nice “problem” to have! I decided I’d shop mainly for some new casual tops that were comfortable but with a little something unique about them. I also decided to check dresses, just because dresses are always hard to find!

What I love about Twice is how easily you can search. I started by searching under tops. Then, I selected both the small size and the small petite size. Next, I selected short sleeve or three-quarter length. I don’t like long sleeves because they are often too long and cover my hands. Finally, I selected blues and reds, because those are the colors I find myself wearing most because I’ve learned those are the colors I look best in. That narrowed down the search quite a bit. I added in grey later. Finally, because I like a bargain, I sorted my results from prices lowest to highest. Why pay more for a top if I like the cheaper ones just as much? From my results, I selected tops from the Gap, Ann Taylor Loft, Uniqlo, Style & Company, New York & Company, and the Limited. See what I mean? Everything is truly name brand.  Here are the items I selected.

My First Twice Purchases

Cute, aren’t they? I think so and was very excited to try everything on. Sorry I don’t have pictures of me wearing them all yet. Nathan admired my new clothes, but can’t work a camera yet! :-) I ordered 12 items from Twice, but 3 of the items (2 tops and 1 dress) didn’t fit me very well. I wasn’t worried. Twice has free return shipping and offers you full credit back for any items returned within 30 days. That made ordering even simpler because I didn’t have to worry that I would be stuck with any items that didn’t fit / look good.

Just so you can see how good of a deal I got – and because I love good deals, here are my totals. The original value of these name brand clothes (according to Twice) was $369.29. The price at Twice was $107.55. Most of the tops were priced at $7.95 or 8.95. Thanks to the 50% off my first order coupon, I spent $53.78 for these 9 new pieces of clothing! If I had shopped in one of those stores, I would have only been able to get 2 new tops for that same price!

My order arrived in 2 days and all the clothes were in excellent condition. None of them looked worn at all. Plus, I did all my shopping from the comfort of my home. I am amazed at how easy it was to shop at Twice and will definitely be shopping there more in the future!

I love my updated wardrobe so much! If you’re looking for some new clothes, I highly encourage you to check out Twice . If you want to sign up through my referral link here, you and I will both get $10 to spend on clothes. Then, be sure to share your referral link to get more credit, too! I’d recommend liking the Twice Facebook page to get an additional 50% off your first order. For me, as soon as I liked the page, I had 12 hours to shop and get the 50% off so be sure you’re ready to shop!

If you have any questions, feel free to ask. Have fun shopping in a frugal and fun fashion!

Nathan @ 4 and 5 Months

In the wonderful whirlwind that was our summer, I fell behind on my monthly Nathan posts. I trust you all won’t mind if I share the highlights of our past two months now? Here we go, starting with his 4 month picture.

Nathan at 4 Months

At 4 months, Nathan weighed in at 13 pounds, 8 ounces and was 24.5 inches long. That put him in the 10% for weight and the 12% for height. He was also a trooper getting 3 more shots this month. The doctor told us to start solid foods, but we decided to wait until 6 months like the AAP currently recommends. Nathan still nurses well but the distraction stage hit us this month. He pauses many time mid-meal to gaze up at me or look around the room.

Nathan discovered his voice this month and has become quite the “talker.” He babbles on and on and loves to screech to hear his voice. It has made church a bit more interesting but he’s so excited that nobody minds much. Andy and I are more aware of the noise than anyone else, I’m sure.

We had a rough couple of weeks due to Nathan’s 4 month growth spurt with waking every two hours during the night. I have to say that this growth spurt was worse than the newborn stage. Now that we’re past that – and done with all our travels – I’m working very hard at getting us both settled into a good sleeping routine now.

Nathan saw his first fireworks in July. We weren’t sure how it was going to go because it was well past his bedtime. He started to get fussy right before they started but once he noticed them, Nathan was transfixed for the entire show. We watched from the parking lot of St. Paul’s (Andy’s school) so were far enough away that we didn’t have to worry about the noise. We could simply enjoy the show – and we certainly did!

Nathan watching his first fireworks

Nathan’s current favorite book is “Peek a Who?” We’ve read it countless times because there is something about the simple pictures and text that calm him instantly. I wish I had written this book because I could be making millions from it! We also discovered this month that the rhyme “5 Little Monkeys” can stop his crying in the middle of the tantrum. It’s the oddest thing and I don’t know why this works, but we are thankful it does!

We enjoyed a trip to Cleveland to see college friends. Among the 5 couples, we had 4 babies – 20 months, 8 months, 4 months (Nathan) and 2 months. We stayed around the house with the babies and enjoyed visiting. I love this picture of “big girl” Kylie helping hold Nathan. They were both so happy in this moment! This was also the first time I really saw myself (as a baby) in Nathan.

Kylie helping hold Nathan

We also made a trip to St. Louis to celebrate our nephew and Nathan’s cousin’s baptism. Ezekiel is a cutie and it was so fun to have all 5 of the cousins together. We did our best at taking a picture of the Barz cousins – the first of many – with the boys wearing matching outfits bought by my Mom.

The Barz Grandchildren - Summer 2014

At 5 months, Nathan has become more efficient (or quicker) at nursing. He still gets easily distracted by all that is going on around him. He definitely recognizes the voices of his Mommy and Daddy when we come in the room or door from somewhere else. It makes us smile every time.

Nathan rolls over occasionally but not regularly yet. He prefers to scoot around. He is excellent at turning himself 360 degrees on his tummy when playing. He tries to sneak glances at the tv but knows Dad and Mom don’t allow it so we are watching it less and less when he’s in the room…which isn’t a bad thing.

This month, we traveled to Nebraska to celebrate his Uncle Chris’s wedding (Andy’s brother) to his new Aunt Jessica. It was a small but lovely wedding in Omaha over Labor Day weekend. Nathan looked quite handsome in his little suit ($3.50 from Once Upon a Child) and new bowtie. He looks so grown up, too!

Nathan at 5 Months in His tux

Nathan loves to stand – with our help. He is very close to sitting on his own, too. He started spending two afternoons a week at his Grandpa and Grandma Whirrett’s while I go teach music. We are very thankful for their help and for the opportunity for Nathan to see at least one set of his grandparents regularly.

Nathan is still quite the charmer and loves to smile at everyone. He laughs occasionally but always has a smile ready! He is starting to recognize a camera and smile for it as well. We get comments everywhere we go over what a cute and happy baby Nathan is. And he truly is! Nathan really is a people person!

Nathan at 5 Months

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