Monday, December 27, 2010


After being away from home for 9 days we're finally back!!! Let the post-holiday meltdowns occur! Banks is overstimulated...he just runs from one toy to the next playing with each for only a few minutes before getting distracted by the next. Add a little over-tiredness (I know it exists, not sure if it is a word or not though) into the mix and it's meltdown central at our house. You can also consider that Banks' response to most things us "unh, unh" which is most frustrating. It doesn't matter what I'm asking him, he's pretty sure he doesn't want to do it. Even if I ask if he wants a cookie he tells me "unh, unh" and then cries because he doesn't get one. Oh, the joys!
It took me all day yesterday to unload all the "trucks", "trah-tuhs", "cahs" and "choo-choos" that he got for Christmas. We definitely have a boy on our hands. While we were gone from home for a long time, it was worth it! We got to visit with both sets of grandparents (Mimi, I promise I have pictures), hang out with many a cousin, see lots of friends, and have lots of playdates. As is my usual style, I will now nauseate you with more pictures than you'd ever want to see...
The annual Jones-Berry-Still get together. Maggie and Will Jones, Banks, Charlie Berry
Maggie was our newest addition. They were brave enough to put her in Banks' lap for a picture. Thankfully he didn't bite her or throw her on the floor. In fact, I think he was petrified. He didn't move a muscle.
The mommas and the babies. Next year we'll have another baby in the mix...Baylor Berry!
Making Christmas cookies with Gram for the first time! The apron he's wearing was mine when I was little!
Decorating one for Santa:
Christmas morning when he first spotted his loot. I think I enjoyed it just as much as he did. I loved seeing the pure joy on his face.
The boy with his choo-choo's and rain boots.
And the excitement of seeing the cars go down the track.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

I have an elf...

...who does not live on the shelf. He may look angelic: But he is very mischevious. He does things like unlock the stall door of a public bathroom and run out only to leave his mother half-clothed and helpless. He likes to touch lots of things: The elf also loves to hide things from his momma. He leaves them in random places only to be found later in the day when said item is no longer needed. Everyday this elf gets into some kind of trouble. And he doesn't care if you say you're going to tell Santa cause he loves Santa...

Tuesday, November 30, 2010


Somewhere along the line Banks picked up on the word cool. Lots of things have been "coo" to him lately.

It's coo to play with your friends, especially if one lives way far away now.

It's coo to throw balls. Especially if you throw them at peoples faces.

It's coo to hang out with your Gram and Grumps and eat lots of crackers.
Christmas trees are coo.

Playing with ornaments is coo (for me, not for my mom). This one is my favorite so far. My mom thinks it's coo that at least it's not breakable.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Age of The No's

My mom loves to tell the story of the time, after being told no less than a million times to say thank you, that I asked "when am I going to know all my manners?" As a parent, it's our responisbility to teach and mold our children into being polite, other-minded little beings. I'm learning that this training cannot begin too soon.

We all know that Banks loves to eat. They guy seriously is never NOT hungry. If he sees you eating, he'll steal whatever it is you have in your hand. The ladies in the nursery at the Y have dubbed him as "the snack theif." In Memphis, this has yet to become problematic. You see, most of Banks' friends here are older. Their parents tell their children to share, be nice, and all the other good manners stuff because Banks is "the baby." During a recent trip home, in which Banks played with other toddlers his age, I became aware that Banks is a brute. He stole many "cah-kuh's" (crackers) and even PUSHED another baby (sorry June). Not that I think he was being malicious, it's just that I'm realizing now is the time to start teaching the boy some manners!

This has led to what I am calling The Age of the No's. Everything in our house right now is a "no." No hitting, no biting, no throwing food. Don't touch that, don't rip your book up, stop throwing your spoon. Quit whining, be sweet to Buford, stop climbing on the fire place. He just can't win. I feel terrible for always saying no. But I would feel even more terrible if my child was the one pushing WHEN HE KNEW BETTER. It's right from wrong at our house. And I'm ready for him to hurry up and learn all his manners. This molding and teaching bit is exhausting!

It's not that we don't have any fun around here. There's a good balance. Banks loves his mobility and is happy just making laps around the house. He is talking up a storm and adds new words to his vocabulary everyday. Yesterday he said "peas" (please)-see we're learning a manner or two-for the first time. I am amazed at his vocabulary, honestly. He loves to be "side" (outside) collecting sticks. We walk around the block, pick up sticks out of the neighbors yard and then leave them in a pile outside the back door for him to return to at our next outing. We are always on the go. You know, I was so antsy for Banks to hurry up and start walking. Everybody I talked to said I would regret it once he did. But, honestly, I love him walking! It makes it so much more fun being outside, going to the park and opens up the door for so many childrens activities for him...Big Backyard, Childrens Museam, etc. I can let him out of the stroller at the Zoo and he can burn off as much energy as he wants! Not that I don't do a lot of chasing, I do, but in my opinion, it's way better than when he was in the crawling stage.

I have been terrible about taking pictures lately but here are a few from the last week:
Stunna Shades

Charlie, June and Banks playing

June and Banks

Matt was in charge of Banks the other day while I ran an errand. He said he turned his head for two seconds and found Banks like this.

Monday, November 1, 2010


Pumpkin carving! He was great at helping get the goo out.And was very interested in what was going on inside. He kept saying "hot" because he saw the candle!
Pleased with his finished product.
Still intrigued by what was inside there:
It was so much fun that he was walking in time for Halloween!
He was a trick or treating machine
Although Banks never misses a meal, he doesn't get to eat sweets all that often. Since it was Halloween, I let him go at it with the candy. He picked out all the M & M's and Oreos and threw the popcorn on the floor.

Monday, October 25, 2010


Recent trip to the zoo...first time on the carousel. Not thrilled about it...He's walking now! It's so funny to see him just cruising across the room. He's so pleased with himself!

Banks loves driving his trucks around the house.
Naked man on the loose! He walks with one arm up in the air...for balance, I guess? Perhaps he's getting ready for a one-handed cartwheel or round-off.
Saturday we went to the pumpkin patch! He had a blast riding the horse, petting the animals and picking out his pumpkin!
Pre-church photo op:

Preparing to launch out. It takes concentration and perfect tongue placement:

And, what most of my pictures look like these days:

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

No pictures, just words

So, I totally understand if you just want to skip over this post. Our computer is on it's last only took me three hours to connect to the Internet just now and it won't let me upload any pictures.
What many of you know about me is I like to be right which often comes with pretending that I know everything. Here, in a blog exclusive, I am admitting that I am not always right nor do I know everything. For example, I do not know how to unattach Banks from my side. Last week he came down with Rotavirus. Well, let me clarify, the Urgent Care doctor told us it was Rotavirus. We're waiting on the poo analysis (technical term) to come back to tell us what it was for sure. Not that it matters now that he's all better. Better but still attached to my hip. HELP ME. I come near to losing my mind everyday.
And while he's driving me crazy, he's still as charming as can be. His vocabulary is increasing every day. New words are "bus", "tru" (truck), "buh" (book), "mommy", "daddy", "cat", "dis" (this), "ba" (ball). He is getting better at "telling" us what he wants/needs. Yesterday I guess he was hungry so he crawled into the kitchen, got his bib and brought it to me. He is also getting better at pitching a fit when a) we don't understand what he's trying to say and b) he doesn't get whatever it is that he wants. He's silly, likes for us to chase him, and likes to dip his finger into something, lick it clean and say "mmmmm." He's learning to eat off a plate and drink from a sippy cup without handles. I'm nervous about trying the spoon...I can see the mess now.
He's becoming more brave with his walking. Just in the last day or so, I've noticed that he'll let go and walk over to something without our coaxing him to do so. He's able to go further and further each day! He can point out several body parts but refuses to learn any new animal sounds. He's getting better at directives. Soon enough I'll have him folding clothes and putting them away. He seems to be hungry all the time, still boycotts most veggies and loves all fruits. Loves sticks, balls and tractors. He loves to go head first down the slide. He loves books. Can destroy a room in two seconds flat. He can make me sooo mad and then melt my heart the very next second. He gives great hugs and can blow a kiss. Makes me feel loved when he calls "mommy, mommy, mommy!!!"
Someone at the park told me yesterday that 15 months was her most favorite age. I haven't been able to pick a favorite. All the stages are hard in their own way and fun in their own way. The I-won't-leave-your-side phase is growing a bit old but hopefully it'll be over soon and we'll be on to a new phase. As for (almost) 15 months...we're enjoying it if only I could upload some pictures to prove it to you!!!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

He's a boy...

Not that you've forgotten or anything. And I am proud to say that many, many trips to the grocery store have been logged without someone calling Banks "she." However, I'm noticing that all the gender neutral baby toys are slowly being replaced with trains, trucks, and balls. Banks is starting to prefer boy stuff over girl stuff...which means that we cannot be outside for more than .5 seconds before he's found a stick and a dirt pile in which to dig. He's especially fond of rubbing his hands around in the dirt, picking up a huge pile of it and throwing it up in the air. It proceedes to fall directly in his hair/really cute smocked outfit and I bite my tongue. You know, I want him to be cute, but I want him to enjoy being a boy more. Oxyclean is my best friend; we go throug about a bottle a week. So play on, brother.
Yesterday, I put him in a new fall outfit, brand new pair of white lace-up Keds (WHAT WAS I THINKING???) and took him outside for a photo op. See above if you want to know what happened. Photo op didn't work out so well, but I did get a few shots of him getting dirty.
Big boy digging around in my compost
And digging in the dirt
Just because he can take a few steps doesn't mean he does all the time...still loving his lion!
And totally unrelated but totally cute!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Big things...

...are happening at our house. Banks took his first steps yesterday!!! He's still wobbly and unsure but soooo proud of his new skill. It's hilarious to me to see him standing there. I think in my mind I still view him as a little baby, not someone who should be standing up, smiling at me! I still think it will be a while before he actually takes off but it is so fun to see him learning to walk. He started off by just taking one step and then by the end of the day he was taking three! He still prefers to crawl or walk behind his push toy but will take steps with some coaxing.
In other news, we had a baby extravaganza in the Grove last weekend. Yes, we got Banks, Charlie and Will matching outfits. Yes, people asked if they were triplets. And tons of people asked if Banks and Charlie were brothers! So funny because I've never thought of them looking alike. Interesting what a little matching outfit will do...
Anyway, they had a big ole time. Lots of crawling, snack eating, sweating and playing. It was way easier than I thought it would be. I envisioned constant baby chasing, fishing chicken bones out of his mouth and dirtyness. Well, they were definitely dirty. Crawling in a dusty grove will do that to a baby, I guess. And Matt was a big help too...I think he was trying to make up for a lack luster performance when we took Banks to the grove last year. I will now let that story die since he was such a help this time.
Banks petting Will


Banks, me, Molly, Charlie

Friday, September 10, 2010


It's official. My life is boring. I have nothing riveting about which to write. I doubt how you want to hear that as I type Banks is throwing pieces of grape over his tray while I shout "no throwing!". And there went the sippy cup. He says "uh oh" like he didn't mean to do it on purpose. That little rascal. Is it possible for a 13 month old to be starting the terrible twos? Banks has just started to pitch mini-fits-complete with wailing, leg kicking, and limpness-when I tell him no or when he wants to go outside (he "tells" me this by ramming his push toy into the back door OVER and OVER again) and I don't.
Here's an example. This time he wanted to go into Matt's office while he was on a conference call. That is a no-go, Banks couldn't understand: cue meltdown.

And I can't stay mad for long cause then he gets all sweet and innocent looking. I had to sneak in and steal this photo one night. I kept singing "fat guy in a little coat" to myself as I was taking the picture.

Some new fun things about Banks...he LOVES to climb and sit Indian-style (usually not together). This guy is busy, busy. I seriously can't take my eyes off of him for one second or he's into something. Man, have I got my hands full!

I'd also like to report that Banks and Buford or as Banks calls him, "Oh-ford", are making progress. Buford nipped at Banks a few times and I threatened to give him away but seems like the two are getting along better these days. Nothing like a little lawn spraying to bring the two together:


Banks' vocabulary is growing by the day. Most popular are bay-bee, uh-oh, mommy (no longer mama) and Oh-ford. New additions are ewwww (what the cow says), ba (what the sheep says), and arrrrrrr (what the lion says). I'm hoping he's going to be a smarty. Recently, he has started to love books! He will pull every single board book out of his basket for me to read. EVERY time we have to read the bubbles book. EVERY time. I'm tempted to hide that thing.

Making the selection and whadda you know...the bubbles book!

Read it mommy. And hopefully this will leave you with a smile. Post mud-hole playing: