It turns out that our yard is under all that snow after all. Madison has been reveling in higher than normal temperatures for this time of year over the past week. Not only has it been nicer outside, but our snow cover is greatly diminished. That means that we've gotten an early start on the Spring mud season, but we've got to get through that to get to summer, so that's a price we'll gladly pay.

Garrison is trying to wear out his shoes with walking. Once he got the general hang of it, he hasn't showed any interest in crawling. Of course, with walking (and being upright generally) the potential for mischief in new places and in new ways has only grown. He loves the microwave, which is alternately cute and annoying. It's cute when you're not using it, but when he turns the microwave off while you're heating something in it, that's annoying. We've had to move some electronics up to higher ground since he became just too fascinated with them. He figured out how to page the handset for the cordless phone from the base station, so that is mounted on the wall now. He likes to go into rooms, partially shut the door, and play peek-a-boo, which is fine until he locks himself into a room because he hasn't quite figured out doorknobs yet. I preemptively replaced the bathroom doorknob because it could lock from the inside but there was no way to open the lock from the outside and I had nightmarish visions of the babysitter calling me and telling me that he had locked himself inside while I tried to talk her through the process of using the reciprocating saw to cut a hole in the door so that she could open it.

We've had to leave the bathroom door shut all the time now since he figured out the fun of dropping things in the toilet. It started with diapers. After he saw us cleaning out his diapers in the toilet, he decided to join the fun by grabbing some clean diapers off his changing table and depositing them in the toilet. Since then, other items have found their way into the bowl and hence, the closed door.

Garrison is maturing mentally and trying all sorts of new head games. He's started testing us to see if he can get a reaction from us by doing things that he knows he shouldn't be doing. For instance, we don't want him playing with or in the dog dishes so he gets a "no" every time he tries it. However, sometimes he deliberately bangs Dalla's food dish just once with something, waits for us to tell him "no", and then cackles happily. The temper tantrum is also part of his act now, as he tries to get his way more often.

Now that he's older than one year old, we've dramatically expanded the number and variety of foods that we're giving him and he's showing definite preferences. For instance, he rather inexplicably loves broccoli but most other vegetables are bad. He has no time for cheese, but he ate almost an entire bratwurst last night. Pasta with red sauce is good; pasta with butter is bad. Plain whole wheat bread is good; plain waffles and zucchini bread are OK; waffles with maple syrup are bad. Ritz, oyster, goldfish, and graham crackers are good. Plain chickpeas are very good; beans in soup are good; refried beans are bad. Plain tilapia is good; plain tuna is OK; salmon is bad. Every time we set him down to a meal, it's an adventure to see what he's going to eat.

The curling season is coming to an end for Sarah and I. We've each only got a couple of games left before the season ends. After curling ends, it will be time to break out the garden tools and tackle the yard again.