Saturday, December 31, 2011

"I Roe Ru"

Today, I heard the most amazing thing a mom can hear from her child: "I Roe Ru". For you not familiar with baby talk, that is "I love you."

I tell Nolan 'I love you' all time, but it generally doesn't faze him and he continues on with his important household duties of pulling every item out of the cabinet, pouring blocks onto the floor, or just making circles around the dining room table.

But not today. TODAY he returned with, "I roe ru."

On cloud 9 right now. I think I'll stay here for awhile :)

Dancing Fools

Nana and Nolan dancing to some old school jams.

Friday, December 30, 2011

There's Something About Nolan

A little snot in the hair works wonders.

Monday, December 26, 2011


Multi-tasker.  This kid has a real future in Silicon Valley.

Sunday, December 11, 2011


Nolan is starting to use the word "daw" a lot lately ("down"). While he walk, he will periodically squat while he says the words "daw".

But wait, there's more! :) As he pulled down the ottoman lid, he said "daw". I think he really understands the concept of the 'down'.

Nolan Robert Smith: Impressing his mama daily.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

"Awe Duh"

Today, after we asked Nolan if he was "all done" with his meal, he said "awe duh", then pushed his food away.
Shortly after, I let Nolan go run around in the leaves (one of his fave past times, especially when the the leaves are extra crunchy!). I picked up a leaf and said "leaf" to him, which he also responded with "leaf."

Play on, my smarty-pants :)


Today, as my mom opened the door to greet us, Nolan yelled "Nana!" My mom was thrilled, to say the least.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Ear Tube Surgery

Today Nolan had surgery for ear tubes. After 5-6 ear infections in the past couple months, Dr. Fazilat said it was time for surgery.

So Francis, Nolan and I arrived at the hospital at 5:45am (coffee cup in hand, of course) to prep for his 7:30am surgery. At 7:30am sharp, Nolan was wheeled in for surgery. AT 7:40am, I was called in to the room to be by him as he slowly woke up. Yup, that's right...a 10 minute surgery.
Nolan was groggy and a bit cranky (like they warned us), but overall doing great.

I am so thankful that he will finally have some relief...and his hearing back :)

Friday, November 11, 2011

Nolan is OFFICIALLY Walking!!!

As you may have read, Nolan took his first couple steps on his 1st birthday (timely little feller, eh?).  Then he continued to take a few steps here and there.
But on 11/11/11, Nolan officially became a walking man!!!  Here's a video of him taking several steps.  From this point on, he was a walking fool.  He walked around the family room, kitchen...everywhere!!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011


Nolan has now decided to clap over everything he does. Oh, and with the music, too!

He pretty much rocks :)

Blowing Kisses

Nolan is now blowing kisses! After I said goodbye to him in the morning, I gave him a big kiss on the cheek then blew him a kiss. He then blew me a kiss right BACK! He kissed the back of his hand, then pulled away from his face as he make the "mwah" sound.

Biggest smile on my face :)

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

"Ooh Ooh Ahh Ahh Ahh"

Nolan has learned how to make monkey noises! I read him a story with a monkey character in it, and made the monkey noises to add more "flare" to the story. He then copied me and made the monkey noises himself! "Ooh Ooh Ahh Ahh Ahh!"

Now he loves to make the monkey noises when we show him monkeys. Too. Damn. Cute.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Ear Tubes

After numerous ear infections the last few months, coupled with the fluid that won't drain from ears (even post-infection), Dr. Fazilat has recommended ear tubes for Nolan.

So I first went to see the ENT specialist that Dr. Fazilat referred me to, however they could not perform the operation for another month! So I went to an ENT recommened by a friend, instead.

After performing a myriad of tests on my poor Nolan, they confirmed that he definitely needed ear tubes. His hearing is partially impaired (which can really affect their speech development at this age) and it is likely throwing off his balance/equilibrium. To top that off, it probably causes him pain/pressure. Luckily, all these will be resolved with the operation. So to say the least, I am eager to get those ear tubes put in!!!
I asked the doctor's receptionist the earliest they could perform the appointment, and they told me that December is the earliest. But after I they saw the desperate and sullen look on my face and my response of, "Really?! December is the earliest?!" they said they could try to move things around and squeeze him in earlier. With a little finagling, they were able to get the operation booked for next week, 11/14. Yay!!

I am so excited for Nolan to finally be free of pain!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Four steps!

Nolan took another 4 steps today! He walked to me, taking 4 steps all on his own! I wish I would have backed-up a bit to see how far he could would've gone, but still so amazed with his skills!

He took his first 2 steps on his birthday, 10/28, so his progress is really impressing this gushing mama :)

Pumpkin Patch Playtime

A few months back, Sarah B, Sarah D, Trisha and I had this grandiose plan of having a quadruple 1st birthday party for Avery, Taylor, Olivia and Nolan since they were all born within a week of each other. This, we hoped, would be a relief for our friends, as they would not need to attend 4 children's birthday parties.

But as we started planning, it just seemed to be more hectic than it was worth. So we opted, instead, just to do our own family birthday parties for the kids, then go to the Pumpkin Patch so they we can get all the kids dressed up and take pics. It was a pseudo birthday party, but we told friends it was just a "halloween" thing so that people didn't feel obligated to bring gifts, etc.

It was a great day, although I think it will be another year before they can truly appreciated the pumpkin patch. Us parents enjoyed it, though, and that's what's important, right? ;)

Nolan in his astronaut flight suit

Birthday Twins! Avery and Nolan

Olivia, Avery and Nolan

"Brothers"! Robert, Connor and Nolan

Nana, Nolan and Mama...with a little cupcake-face

My beautiful spider web cupcakes! Quite delicious, I must say. Pumpkin spice cake, with caramel buttercream frosting.

More pics at:

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Nolan's 1st Birthday Celebration

I have always imagined that my baby's 1st birthday would be some huge/crazy event. And since Nolan was lucky enough to have 3 friends born within a week of him (even one on the same DAY), the 3 moms and I planned on a GINORMOUS birthday for the 4 birthday babies.
This, we felt, would be fun for all of us to do together, plus all of our mutual friends would really appreciate not having to go to 4 separate baby birthdays :)

So the planning begun. And the issues begun. "Where are we going to do it?....Well, if we do it outdoors, what if it rains? We need to have an indoor location at backup..... Well, maybe we should just have it indoors?..." But As we began to put the guest list together, it just seemed to get bigger and bigger; 4 birthday babies + 4 families + friends of 4 families + families of 4 families. Oy. What indoor location can accommodate that many people? And how can we manage that many people/children??

So we finally decided to keep it simple. The main things we all wanted: the 4 kids together for a birthday celebration and, of course, the kids in their adorable Halloween costumes. So we decided to just do a "Halloween Pics at the Pumpkin Patch" event and then just each of our family celebrations.

There it is. Simple. Easy.

So on Friday, Nolan's birthday, I stayed home from work to hang out with him. Oh, and do some delicious baking! So all day, my mom and I played with Nolan, made cupcakes (delicious pumpkin spice cupcakes with caramel buttercream frosting) for the pumpkin patch event AND a cake (an amazing banana cake with cream cheese/banana frosting) for his family party.
It was so much fun! I love being domestic sometimes! (I said *sometimes*)

On Saturday, we did our big family event at Sonoma Chicken Coup. It included my mom, grandma, Jarrod, Jenn, Robert, Connor, Francis' mom, and Francis' stepdad. It was a really great time, delicious food, and AMAZING cake (if I must say so myself).

Here are some pics from his family party:

More pics at:

Friday, October 28, 2011

Wait, what? My baby is 1 today?!!

I am still having troubles coming to terms with it. It can't My baby boy is 1 year old today??!!

My feelings about him turning 1 are polarized. On one side, my heart is broken. I feel like time is zipping right past me; what happened to my infant boy that I birthed like...yesterday?
But then there is this other half of me - so excited to see what tomorrow brings. Each day with Nolan is more entertaining and exciting than the last. He is such a little character! I can barely put into words how amazing this little man is. Of course, I will try, though :)

Nolan is truly one of the most affectionate, sweet, loving children I have ever met. When you're sitting on the floor with him, he loves to just come over and smother you with a big hug and (if you're lucky) one of his signature open-mouth kisses on the cheek. When I lay on the floor playing with him, he will play with his toys for a bit, then come over and smother his face into your neck, chest, or lap. He will then return to his toys. A minute later, he will come over to you again to give some more love. What kid does that?? My kid, that's who.
At night is especially cuddly. You can just sit with him and cuddle together...for a bit (he is an almost-toddler, after all) . It's like you just melt together. What an amazing time.

He is such an easy-going, happy kid, too. He is generally always in good mood; as long as he can see that someone is around, he's a happy camper. He is not intimidated by new people, and absolutely LOVES other kids (especially his cousins, Robert and Connor).
When we go to restaurants, and he sits and eats his food and rarely fusses. We have never had to remove him from a restaurant due to a meltdown. Unheard of, right??
One of my favorite things Nolan does: throws himself right down in front of you to tickle him. It's the funniest thing! He'll lay down right in front of you with a little smirk and wait for you to tickle him. After he is done giggling and squirming, he'll crawl away, and a couple minutes later come over over for some more. And recently, when he sees Francis grab his little truck, he will lay down and wait for Francis to roll the truck all over his back. It is the cutest thing to watch!

Let's see...what are some of his big milestones, you ask? Here are some of the ones I can think of:
  • says "dada" and "mama", although I think he says "mama" moreso when he wants/needs something, and "dada" when he's generally excited about things
  • says "nana"
  • says "up"
  • said (once) "bye bye"
  • said (once) "no no no" (after Connor took his toothbrush away from him)
  • can put buckles together
  • can unlock an iPhone (why did we teach him that?!)
  • climbs up and down stairs
  • walks...with assistance (he took 2 steps on his own today, though!) He really doesn't need the assistance because he seems to have really good balance, but he will just stop moving the moment you take your finger away. I guess he's just building up his confidence. He'll get there, though. No rush.
  • feeds himself with a spoon
  • brushes his own hair
  • NOT ONE TOOTH yet. Not even peeking through.
  • a million other things I can't think of right now. Good god, the kid changes daily! :)
All I can say is that Nolan has brought such a purpose and contentment in my life. I AM SO EXCITED TO SPEND MY LIFE WITH THIS AMAZING BOY!!!!

Here are some pics from his first 12 months. I actually cried as I went through some of these older pics - I am brought back to all the emotion and joy from each of these moments with him.(sniffle) I'll be okay.


My little prince has arrived.


My sleeping angel


Those kissable cheeks!


From our photo shoot with Katrine


That funny little smile. It's so contagious!


Happiest baby boy!


Easter Sunday


Nolan trying to hide under the blanket


Lookin' so dashing for mother's day


Hanging at his bestie's (Avery) BBQ


Just a little bubble time

Chargin' through


Helping daddy on beer bottling day



My baby's 1st Birthday!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Nana's new biking buddy!

My mom recently got a bike attachment so that she can take the kids on rides. Nana's got a new biking buddy!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Spoon-feeding himself

Nolan has been getting really frustrated with me feeding him; apparently, he believes he is ready to feed himself.
Since he kept grabbing for the spoon, I let him have at it! I would have to say, all in all, he did really well. He dips his spoon into the jar, then puts it directly into his mouth. I guess his downfall would be keeping the spoon straight; so far, half of his spooned food ends up on his tray.

Here's a nice pic after he fed himself. Hard to see all the food, but he somehow managed to get food on his face, hands, tray Lovely.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Visiting Portland

Francis & I decided that we should take a mini-vacation/long-weekend away somewhere. Our main criteria was: short flight. This was our test to see if we could fly/vacation with Nolan without complete and utter chaos.

Result: Awesome! Nolan did incredible on the plane (although he didn't even sleep a minute), but he was happy and playful. And for Portland, what an incredible city. So green, clean, lush, and just beautiful in general. We walked all around downtown, visited multiple pubs (surprised?), and even drove around all the neighborhood of downtown. I could easily live in that city!

(oh, and top it off, we "met" Steven Tyler. He was staying in our hotel, even on the same floor! He waved at Nolan and said "hi". Nolan wasn't too impressed.)

Friday, September 30, 2011

App = Up

This morning, while I was getting ready, Nolan was grabbing my legs and saying "app, app!" At first, I wasn't sure what he wanted. But then I realized he was trying to say "Up, up!"

So I picked little man up, and placed him in the sink while I got ready. He was a happy camper; apparently he just wanted to watch me get ready while he played with his blocks. So the sink is just the perfect spot. A new favorite.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011


Nolan, my outgoing little man, loves to cheers everyone these days. He says "ca" and lifts his cup for you to tap his cup. So flippin' cute...except when he makes you do it over and over :)

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

"No, No, No!!"

After Connor took Nolan's favorite toothbrush away from him, Nolan waved his finger at Connor and yelled, "No, no, no!!"

Connor knows who's boss now....or maybe not. Connor didn't give the toothbrush back.

Sunday, September 25, 2011


Nolan is OBSESSED with the iPhone. But the cutest part is that he loves to put the phone to his ear and babble, sometimes starting out by saying "ro?" I'm guessing that's his version of hello" :)


"Is there something I can help you with?? I'm on the phone!"

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Up & Down

Nolan seemed to climb up the stairs with ease the first time he tried. But he did not attempt to climb down the stairs until a few days ago.

From the top of the stairs, Nolan looked down and reached out his arm to that first step. He then tilted slightly forward. I quickly grabbed him and realized I should probably teach him to climb down before he attempted this crazy feat on his own.

So I showed him how to climb down the stairs properly - on his belly, feet first. The next day, I showed him again. And on day 3, he went for it all on his own...on his belly, feet first. The kid is quick AND follows directions well. Good boy :)

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

"Bye Bye"

Today Nolan and I were walking around in the front yard as we talked to my mom. My mom started walking away to grab something from the garage when...

"Bye Bye" came from my baby's mouth, as he waved at my mom!!! Neither of us had prompted him or gave any hand signals; just a sweet little farewell to Nana ALL ON HIS OWN.

My mom and I just looked at each other in amazement. Wow :)

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Keeping Up that Beautiful Coif

Yesterday, as I brushed Nolan's hair, I said "brush your hair." I then handed him the brush and again said, "Brush your hair." To my surprise, he proceeded to brush his own hair!

Then today, I handed Nolan the brush again. He stared at it. I said, "Brush your hair." And what do you know, he again started combing through his hair. He beamed as he brushed through his golden coif!

Saturday, September 3, 2011


Each time I lift Nolan up from his car seat, or high chair, or...whatever, I say the word "up!". This is in hopes that he will be able to soon communicate his needs with these type of simple, one-syllable words.

Today, it seems he has made a language breakthrough! As I opened the car door to lift him out of his car seat, he said (or what very closely resembled) the word "up"!

You have brought momma's spirits "up", my Nolan-man!

Waving goodbye

Nolan is now waving goodbye! Today, as we exited my mom's house, I turned to wave goodbye. And so did Nolan. Melt my heart :)

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Monday, August 29, 2011

Another Ear Infection

My poor little man. An ear infection. In both ears. Again.
And to top that off, his acid reflux is being aggravated by the mucus running down his throat from his runny nose.
But, in Nolan fashion, is staying in good spirits. During the day, he is still sweet and outgoing, with the occasional fuss and rub of the ear. But at night, when he is laying flat or just slightly tilted, his ears seem to be painful. My heart just hurts when I know he's in pain. I just do what I can do: Tylenol + cuddling.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Get some climbing harnesses!

Nolan has been attempting to scale our stairs several times, but each time I would pull him away instantly.
But today, I let him go for it. And go for it, he did!! The kid climbed almost all the way to the top of the stairs. Holy mother, we've got a climber! Grab the harnesses!!


Friday, August 5, 2011

Ear Infection

My poor little man. He officially has his 1st ear infection. Went to see Dr. Fazilat and found out he has an ear infection in both ears, so she prescribed him some antibiotics.

What amazed me: Nolan barely fussed at all, considering he has a raging ear infection. He seemed a bit uncomfortable, then had a bit of a fever. But not super cranky or fussy.

What a trooper. I hope these antibiotics kick-in quickly :(

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Uh oh...he's a climber

It didn't even occur to me that Nolan would already be able to climb. I clearly don't understand about child development. I figured that if the kid just barely learned to crawl, he surely wouldn't be able to climb steps. I was wrong.

Nolan kept trying to grab my shoes. Since they were pretty dirty, I decided to place them up a couple steps to keep him from playing with them. Well, that was no deterrent. Nolan proceeded to climb a step to get those shoes!!

I guess you should never underestimate a willful child!

Monday, July 25, 2011

"Traditional" Crawler

Nolan is now crawling on all fours. No more asterisks needed when people ask me if he's crawling (having to disclose "yes, but army crawling"). He's just crawling. Period!

It was actually funny because Jenn asked me today how Nolan was doing with his crawling. I said, "Great! Still an army crawler, but getting around so well!" But that night, after picking him up from my mom's house, I realized he's moved onto more of a traditional crawl now. Things change quickly! My answers your Nolan questions change by the second!!

Sunday, July 24, 2011


So Nolan-bear is starting to take the next leap: cruising!! Today he pulled himself up using the ottoman, then took a couple steps to the couch as he grasped the ottoman.

Little man is getting so mobile!!! Should I be excited or scared?!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

What ingenuity!

Today Nolan pulled himself up using a turned over basket. I was so proud.
But then he BLEW MY MIND! He proceeded to climb onto the basket - using it as a stepstool - in order to grab the remote off the couch!!!
What men will do for TV remotes :)

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Continues to pull himself up

Nolan-man is getting better each day with pulling himself up. Today, he pulled himself up using his toy table. I think he was quite please with himself...and his toy-table playtime reward :)

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Pulling himself up

Today my little Nolan-man pulled himself up, using a box for support! Unfortunately, the box was flimsy and he just about toppled over.
Hopefully he didn't get too freaked and will continue trying. Charge on, little man!!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

5 years without my Dad

It has now been 5 years since my dad passed away. I still remember the exact moment I found out that he died, and seeing his yellow-bike-glove-covered hand peeking out from under that tarp. My (and my family's) world fell apart that day.
He was this family's strength; I always knew things were going to turn out right if I had his support. What were we going to do without him? How are we supposed to go through the rest of this life without him?? We were supposed to have him for at least another 20 years!!
My father did everything for our family; not only did he mow my lawns when I worked too many hours to do it myself....or help install a new front door on my brother's house....or wash my mom's car every Saturday morning.....but he did something so much more important than all that. He listened to us. He hugged us when we felt broken down. He loved us with every cell of his body. He was the most amazing met I've ever met.

I miss you, dad. I think about you every day. I really hope I get to see you someday again. I wish I could believe there is a God and that we'll meet in heaven one day, but what God would take a man like you from this earth at such a young age?

All I know: I love you and miss you terribly, Dad.

Monday, June 20, 2011

What a lover!

Nolan is quite the little smoocher now. If you ask for a kiss, he will kiss you and make this cute little smacking noise after. Let me clarify: it's more of an open mouth/lick-action type of kiss...something maybe only a mother could appreciate. Which I do.


Friday, June 17, 2011

Army crawler!

Nolan is officially a crawler! It's more of a army/traditional crawl-style, but it's still crawling! He will start out on his knees, pushes off, is then on his belly, then pulls with is arms.

Whatever it is, it's adorable and completely amazing to me :) So proud!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Rough night!

Last night we stayed at my mom's house, as our water heater broke. So we packed all our stuff and settled-in at Mamacita's.
I'm not sure if it's due to the change in environment, but Nolan woke up SEVERAL times last night. Francis & I are exhausted! Luckily, Francis was able to catch a few extra zzz's than I could.

Saturday, June 11, 2011


I really had *no* idea when I was dressing Nolan this morning that Francis would be wearing the same outfit! Francis was in the bathroom getting ready when I dressed Nolan.
Then Francis comes out and.......HAHAHAHAHA! Francis and his mini-me!!

Perfect Pincer grasp

Nolan has been able to pick up food and put it in his mouth for quite a while now (at the least the past month??) But it has been grabbing the food with a full fist, and hoping some of it will make it into his mouth.

However, he now has the precision of a surgeon. He very delicately picks up each piece with a perfect little pincer grasp (thumb and pointer finger), and places it right into to his mouth.

Nolan-bear is such a stud!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Nolan's big-boy car seat!

We finally got Nolan the next-level car seat. He looks so small in it! I can't believe he's not in the "infant" car seat anymore :(

Sunday, June 5, 2011


Just posted this pic for plain ol' cuteness sake. Love that face!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Pushing/crawling backwards

When it comes to rollers, I don't think there's any better than Nolan. That kid can roll across an entire room in 3 seconds flat.
However, today, he starting getting on his hands and knees, then on his hands and toes!! After that, he proceeded to push himself backwards!

That kid will be crawling in no time!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

I'm hiding!

I'm hiding, Ma! I bet you can't find me!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

First (partial) sleepover

Nolan had his first (partial) sleepover. Francis & I dropped Nolan off at Jarrod & Jenn's so that we could get a brief night out to celebrate a friend's law school gradution. We put Nolan to bed there around 7pm, then returned to J&J's house by 9:45pm.

Granted, he only slept there for ~2.5 hours, but that is a big step for me! I've never tried to have Nolan start his bedtime at someone else's house!
Things went really well; Nolan only cried for 10 minutes, then fell asleep. Jenn even sent a reassuring email for me - a pic of Nolan sleeping soundly :)

Oh, and my nephew Robert said the cutest thing that had me cracking up. Right after we left the house to go to the party, Robert said, "Oh no!!! Auntie Marissa forgot Nolan!"
Gotta love that kid!


Some religious dude has predicted the "Rapture" for today. So goodbye all, it's been a good life. Should we all good to church now to redeem ourselves in one day for a lifetime of debauchery?

Oh, what did you say? You don't believe that bullshit either? Alright then, talk to you mofos tomorrow!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

I'm hiding!

Here are a couple pics I took which were too adorable not to post. Nolan kept pulling the blanket over his head, and I snapped a couple shots: