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Henry got to visit the Stock Show while it was in town. Ever since the first time we went–back when I was pregnant–we’ve been anticipating the time when Henry would be old enough to go and enjoy all the animals. Grandma and Grandpa came with us, which turned out to be a big blessing because it was a madhouse there. Much to our happiness, Henry really enjoyed getting to see the animals up-close. The goat was very friendly, though probably hoping for treats we didn’t have.

Sheep have always been a bit of an inside joke. Since one of the first things Henry could say was “ba ba” for bottle, we were able to teach him pretty quickly what a sheep says. He really did seem to understand that they were two separate ideas and would always smile really big when we’d point to a sheep and ask him what it says. Other big hits of the day were the animals’ water bowls (gross) and a fantastic battery-operated spinning ball/light toy that Grandma bought for Henry. We were all completely wiped at the end of the outing.

Henry has recently learned how to say “Yes” and “No,” which has been really fun. Now when we present him with book or snack choices, he can state his preferences pretty clearly. He’s very quick to pick up or at least try out new words. His bath puff is a “buff” the mop a “bop;” he now goes “oof oof!” to imitate a dog barking, swings his arm around for an elephant, flaps his bent elbows for a chicken.

We bought a membership to the Museum of Nature and Science with Ohio grandparent Christmas money, and it’s been the best investment of the year so far. Henry LOVES the place. The bear dioramas are the biggest hit, though the Discovery Zone and the dinosaurs are also enthralling. We thought some of the exhibits might be too scary–like one depicting a dinosaur scene involving a sharp-toothed guy “roaring” while another devours an unfortunate piece of prey in the background. Nope. Loves it. We had to literally drag him away. This from a kid who was so terrified of a little inflatable chicken that came with a ball set that we had to sequester the fowl in the office.

Every day he becomes a little more of the person he is going to be and it’s so fun to be there for the process.

Henry’s second hair cut passed with no tears. He seemed to really enjoy the car he got to sit in, which goes along with his growing amusement with cars in general. Such a little boy!

Well, first the big news. Ladies and gents, we have a walker:

Henry just got better and better over the weekend and now he’s walking practically everywhere. He’s still doing it with the zombie arms stretched in front of him, but he’s certainly mobile.

Halloween was a big success. We went to a nearby stretch of stores in the morning where the merchants were handing out candy to hordes of kids. Henry went as Elmo:

elmo halloween

This turned out to be a brilliant costume because he was like a major celebrity for the 1-3 year-old set. As he came down the street, all the kids would point and shout, “Elmo! Elmo!” Henry handled his fame well, mostly since he had no idea what was going on. He loved being out in the lovely weather and hanging with mom, dad, grandma, and grandpa.

halloween walk

He got a big kick out of getting to pick his own candy, though he thought it equally fun to put it in his own bucket as someone else’s.

halloween candy

Henry was very excited when someone handed him his very favorite treat: raisins! I’d like to post this last picture and say how trick or treating wore him out

halloween sleep

except this was just prior to trick or treating. The car tires him out, trick or treating revs him up!

Henry’s hair was getting a little out of control, and since my last attempt to get it out of his eyes resulted in a “mom haircut,” we decided to take him to the pros and let them work their magic on his mop. The magic is mostly in the form of dvds the stylists play at kiddie eye-level while letting them play with steering wheels in airplanes. And of course speed. Henry was totally on board at the beginning.

henry airplane

Then he got a little antsy and we had to distract him by letting him comb Dad’s hair while the stylist combed his.

henry comb dad

But by the end, no amount of exciting diversions could hold back the mini-meltdown.

post haircut

Two minutes later he was toddling around the waiting area waving at the dogs and cute little girls walking by, so not to worry.

Later that afternoon, we went to a nearby pumpkin patch, a tradition his Auntie Krista started last year. He slept through most of the experience then:

pumpkin patch baby

but this year he was all. about. the pumpkins. Or “balls” as he was sure they were called. He roamed around patting them and pointing out particularly appealing ones.


(video)

Near the check out there was a box full of small decorative gourds. We presented him with one and he went to bite it like he did the apple, which elicited laughs from everyone in line. Sensing a primed audience, he then proceeded to grab at the gourds and smack his lips while eyeing the crowd playfully. What a ham.

While I’m not sure we have any full words yet, Henry has definitely reached a sign language milestone. Now when we go to heat up his bottle, he’ll squeeze his little hand and go, “Ba ba ba ba!” It’s all very exciting, except that he uses it as much to identify as to express desire. So him doing it might mean, “Gimme a bottle now!” or, just as likely, “Hey look, it’s a bottle!”

He’s practicing using utensils more and more. Here he is attempting to feed himself yogurt with a spoon:

He does pretty well until he realizes how much more fun it is to fingerpaint with yogurt than eat it from a spoon.

Even though he is too big for his Exersaucer now, Henry has brilliantly refashioned it into a fort-type thing. He likes to toss things underneath and then go on expeditions hunting for them.

Exersaucer under

The weather has been cool, like a teaser for autumn. I predict footie pajamas in our near future.