After a long dry spell, I finally got a number of new photos uploaded to the photo gallery.
Dinah is still her extremely happy baby self. She loves to smile at people and she's still pretty quiet (probably because it's hard to get a word in edgewise with her brother around). She's starting to sit up on her own for longer periods though she's still prone to falling over and bonking her head if she's left alone for too long. She has been sleeping through the night more often than not of late which is great for Sarah and I. She goes to sleep around 21:00 or so every night and usually doesn't wake up until 05:00-06:00 in the morning. We've started her on some solid foods but she hasn't really shown a real appreciation of them yet.
In looking back at some old photos it's clear that she's getting a different experience than Garrison did at the same age. We did more stuff and went more places with Garrison when he was an infant because we didn't have a toddler along with us to suck up all available time and energy. She's spending more time at home and probably getting to do a few less interesting things.
Garrison is still his rambunctious, boundary-testing, three year-old self. He's doing well with his swimming lessons and he's been zipping all over the neighborhood on his balance bike that Santa got him for Christmas. He routinely rides his balance bike (what he calls his "tippy bike") to day care and bike which is probably a half-mile or more each way. In fact, he's doing so well with his bike that we've been considering getting him a bike with pedals and no training wheels to see how he does.
He's also been eating more foods of late. In fact, he often surprises me when we go out to eat with what he'll order. He's ordered fish fry in the past, and pulled off the fried breading in order to eat the cod inside. He ordered grilled cheese the last time we went out which both Sarah and I were concerned that he wouldn't eat since he usually doesn't eat cheese at home. However, he promptly gobbled it down when it arrived. And, in all honesty, he's been eating more cheese at home. He enjoyed some pepperjack cheese that we had recently, as well as some Colby cheese. All of that is a real change since even a couple of months ago he wouldn't touch white cheese at all and would only occasionally eat "orange cheese".
Last weekend, Garrison and I spent most of Saturday building a large play set in our back yard. It had become obvious to both Sarah and I that he needed a better outlet for his energy in the backyard and after seeing him exert himself freely on other play sets in the neighborhood we started searching for one of our own. We looked at used play sets and new play sets before deciding to buy a new one and put it together ourselves. It was delivered by a large lift truck and one guy, despite weighing over seven hundred pounds. Sarah did an extensive inventory and labeling of the parts (with Dinah's help) once I got them all out of the shipping crate. All that labeling really helped once the assembly process started because it meant that I could look for the properly labeled part instead of having to spend time comparing similar parts to find the right one.
It probably took twelve-fourteen man-hours to uncrate, label, assemble, and clean-up but now the thing is complete. Garrison has already spent a good deal of time climbing all over it, pretending that it is a ship, and generally enjoying himself immensely, despite the fact that it's been somewhat rainy, windy, and cold since we set it up.
This year was the first year that Garrison really got any sort of Easter experience (probably because it's the first year that he's been old enough to understand it). My mom was out for the week of the holiday and she helped get Garrison into the mood by practicing hiding eggs with him during the week. They also dyed eggs together the night before Easter, along with my sister, which Garrison really enjoyed. Since then, we've been trying to keep his overall Easter candy consumption down to a readable amount since he gets hyped on sugar pretty easily. So far, he's managed to eat all of his chocolate bunny, some of his jelly beans, all of his Peeps, and a few of his chocolate eggs. Fortunately there isn't another candy-centric holiday coming up for quite a while.