Nanny and Papa Visit

A few weeks ago Nanny and Papa (my parents) visited. It was such a treat! Kenny asks all the time now when Nanny and Papa are going to come back… and I have to agree. When are you? ;)

For a Christmas present, I took my mom horse back riding. She mentioned to me one time that she really missed riding horses (bc she grew up on a farm), and so we took the boys out while she was down here to introduce them to horses!


My mom is such a pro. The owner was trying to get a feel for how well she could ride horses, and after a few minutes he turned to me and said that my mom was great. I have to agree.


The boys also loved being on the horse. (Especially Kenny after he overcame his initial nervousness.)

We also celebrated the boys’ birthdays by going to Chuck-E-Cheese because Kenny is LOVING coin machines, so we thought he would really love going there. (And we were right!) He loves to do his chores (sort the clean silverware) to save money to go get candy from the machines. He gets 3 pennies each time he sorts the silverware and 1 penny for his tithing.

Anyway, Chuck-E-Cheese:

(Sorry I don’t have many pictures of Kenny because I stayed with Reed for a lot of it)



^^^Can you guess that he loved being able to climb the stairs as much as he wanted?


^^^Staring at all the games and a bit overwhelmed by all the noise.


^^^And here’s some of the things the boys got for all of their hard work. ;)

We loved having Nanny and Papa down here with us. Come back soon!


One Year!


One year. One year! Sigh.

  • Pulling himself up and standing by himself


  • stairs! loves climbing stairs and makes it his mission every day to climb them.
  • luckily, he has learned how to climb down the stairs now, too. he would try to go head first down the stairs, but he has finally learned to turn around.
  • is completely weaned and loves his milk from a sippy
  • isn’t very fond of snow.
  • waves goodbye
  • loves to mimic sounds we make. if you call out, “hey jake!”, Reed will make the same pitch and cadence. it’s adorable.
  • he can say mama, dada, tickle, and he has his own word for “bye”.
  • can stand fairly well on his own now. just today he mastered standing while dancing.
  • loves music. instantly calms him down.
  • has started to get a little clingy to me. he has been pitching a fit recently if anyone but me puts him down for bed at night.
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    He loved his cake, but I was surprised he didn’t smash into it more. These pictures are still when he was clean. I should’ve taken pictures of the aftermath, though.

Anyway, we love this sweet, loving, little boy. I can’t imagine life without him. He is so funny and tries to look for ways to make us laugh. He is quick to smile, and is such a cheerful, fun little boy. He is fairly mild mannered, and a good sleeper and eater. We love him so very much!


We celebrated Easter a week early since my family came down for Reed’s blessing day.

So here’s the day in pictures:


^^^Kenny had to take the picture with his crackers he was snacking on.045

^^^And after we convinced him to put the crackers down. :)031

^^^And the Easter egg hunt! For future reference, make sure you take the family picture before the basket is brought out and the eggs hid. Kenny was not happy about putting his basket down for the picture. Proof in a few pictures.

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^^^The entire family together :)


^^^And here Mr. Man is sans shoes and upset. (Also, I guess Kenny and Reed both saw something really interesting off to the right. An Easter egg perhaps?)


^^^And one last picture with Kenny and Papa looking for “birds” with his new Easter binoculars. :)

2 Months and Blessing Day

Look who turned 2 months 3 weeks ago!



I wanted to wait until he had his 2 month check up so I could really say how everything is (was) going.

He seems to be doing well! As an update on the reflux, we were doing great after a few minor bumps. He was nursing a lot (A LOT) better, and it seemed fairly normal.

Unfortunately we’ve regressed this week. He is back to screaming while nursing. His doctor recommended increasing his dosage of the medicine he is taking, so hopefully that does the trick.

But other than that, he really is a dream! He sleeps from 10 at night to 6 or 7 in the morning (hallelujah! I’m trying not to get my hopes up that this will continue because I know it is typical for them to go through a growth spurt at 3 months . . . but let’s not kid ourselves. my hopes are up. real up.)

He is also such a smiley, happy baby. I love how sometimes when he is crying, I will walk over to look at him, and he will look me in the eye, stop crying, and just break out into an enormous grin. It just melts my heart.

And his snuggles! I love it. If I could just wrap him up and keep him this size forever, I would. I just love snuggling this little one.


Here Reed is on his blessing day! My family came down for the special day, and here my mom is with the baby blessing outfit she crocheted for him. It was so cute! I wish I had taken a more up close shot of the outfit. It is adorable!


Reed is named after my Dad, David Reed Manning. Here they are together.


And here Reed is, again, in his special blessing outfit with his cousins.

His blessing day was a very nice day. Unfortunately the microphone wasn’t turned on for the blessing so I couldn’t quite hear it, but Ken wrote down what he could remember. And, of course, Reed had a blow-out during Sunday School while Ken was teaching. Everyone heard it, and it got all over the onesie I made with his name stitched on it, but thankfully it didn’t get on the white crocheted outfit.

Anyway, we love this little boy so much! Kenny is so good at being gentle and kind to “Reedy”. He is always looking out for him and concerned for his well being. The other day we were making cookies and Reed was sleeping, but Kenny didn’t want Reed to miss out on the fun so he kept on yelling down the hallway, “Reedy! Cookies!!!”


P.S. He officially rolls over. He did it about a week ago while on our bed and then he did it again tonight while on the ground. Please slow down time.

Kenneth Marcus Alford

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Well my not-so-baby boy turned 2 a couple of weeks ago! I can’t believe how big he is (especially since little Reed is here now. Kenny looks HUGE compared to Reed and it confuses me how Kenny used to be that small and now his foot is as big as Reed’s forearm. How did that happen?!)

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^^^Attempting to blow out the candles by himself. (Ken had to step in and help finish the job.)

Things Kenny has been up to lately:

  • Kid is opinionated. He knows what he wants and will voice it to let you know. Multiple people have mentioned this to me recently. I wonder if this will continue or if it is part of “the two’s”. I guess we will find out.
  • He went through a potty training stint about two months ago. He was on the ground crying because he wanted to use the toilet (and I was reluctant because I didn’t want to have a potty training toddler and a newborn at the same time.) I finally started working on it with him, and he was doing a great job (which totally surprised me), but then we went on a two week vacation, so it fizzled out. He will occasionally come up and tell me if he wants to use the toilet, but it is purely so he can get a “num” (treat) and not because he wants to regularly use the toilet.
  • He loves to say prayers and will typically get upset if he can’t be the one to say it. When he is praying for the food, and will go around to each thing on his plate and pray for it. If he doesn’t know how to say the word, he will just point to it and say “dis and dis”. My favorite is when he will pray for “nums” and then he will stop and get an “ooohhhhhh!” face on and say again excitedly “NUMS!” as if he just remembered that he is going to be able to eat a treat soon.
  • He has done so well at accepting and loving Reed. I was unsure whether he actually got it when we asked him where Reed was when I was pregnant, but it seems like he understood the whole time. He loves holding Reed, saying hi to him, and sharing his toys with him. When it is time for me to change Reed’s diaper, Kenny will crawl up on the changing table next to Reed and hold his hand (because Reed usually cries when I change his diaper). Also, Kenny hates when we hold his leg up when we change his diaper (he always says “ouch!”), and so when I was holding Reed’s leg up today, Kenny said “no, no!” and tried to push my hand away from Reed’s leg. It was really cute to see him so protective and loving towards his little brother.
  • He loves to be a goof ball. Every day he tries to make me laugh, and if he finds something that makes me laugh, he will do it over and over again. He is such a ham and loves to be silly.
  • It is surprising how much he comprehends and understands. The other day I was telling Ken how I listed a new baby crochet item on Etsy and I was explaining it to him. I then said that I put up another new item, but I couldn’t remember what it was (running on 3 hours of sleep will do that to ya). Kenny then pipped in, “Bunny! Bunny!” And he was right! That was the item that I put up that I couldn’t remember. Kenny “helped” me take the pictures to post online. I was very surprised that he was able to follow the conversation Ken and I were having, understand it, remembered what item I had posted, and voiced it. (Guess I need to start paying more attention to what we talk about in front of him.)

We love this little boy and couldn’t be prouder of who he is becoming. He is such a good big brother, son, friend, and child of God.


^^^Making himself comfortable watching fish at the Georgia Aquarium. (The Georgia Aquarium! Highly recommend it! It was amazing. We went there together as a family over Christmas break.)


^^^Last family picture of three. :)

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^^^Kenny taking selfies of himself.

We love you to the moon and back, son! :)

Independence and Persuasion


Independence and persuasion. Sounds like a novel, right?

Well this has been what has been going on with Kenny lately. It seems like the last two months or so he has really kicked it into high gear with wanting to be independent and doing things his way, which leads me to the persuasion portion of the title. I feel like my persuasion skills have had to be kicked up a notch as well. (Oh, let’s go look over here by the exit! Oh no, you will love it! There is a dragon we can look at . . . Come on. No seriously, come on.)


  • He has gotten out of his crib once. That was about 3 weeks ago, and it hasn’t happened since (knock on wood), so I’m hoping we can postpone this for as long as possible. He laughed and was proud of himself when he realized he managed to get out of his crib (even though he really fell out of it and was crying at first).
  • Since our trip to Charleston with my mom, that’s all Kenny talks about. He calls here “Nanny”, and he will randomly insist to call her on my phone throughout the day.
  • His favorite shirt is a stripped Ralph Lauren shirt because it has a “neigh” on it (the polo logo). He loves his horsey shirt and wants to wear it every day.


  • He loves to help unload/load the dishwasher. If he sees me starting to do this chore, he will run and get his stool so he can help out.
  • Last week he said his first formal prayer. He has started saying who he would like to say the prayer, so he said he wanted to say it, and then he mumbled some words, looked at me, and then we said amen together.
  • He thinks if you say something is hot, that means you should say a prayer. I think it is because his food is typically hot and then we say a prayer on his food, so that’s why he’s made that connection. So if we get in the car and it is hot, he will want to say a prayer.
  • He loves to play hide-n-seek and still loves to scare people and to be scared. He has started saying “shh” when he is sneaking up behind you to scare you.
  • He loves when the songs “Happy”, “Rude”, or “Shake It Off” come on the radio. He tries to sing along.
  • Still loves sticks and rocks like it is his job. He knows (and understands) the rule that they aren’t suppose to come in the house, but he still tries to sneak them in. I find them all over the house in random spots. (And don’t get me started on the forest of sticks and rocks that are in my car.)


  • He loves to watch Sesame Street and a show he calls “Choo Choo.” It’s really called Dinosaur Train. Whenever he sees a dinosaur he will call it “choo choo.” The other day he decided to change “choo choo’s” diaper.
  • He gets upset if you ask “do you want to have lunch?” I think it’s because often we will have to stop doing something fun because we need to go have lunch. So if I ask him if he wants food and he says yes, that’s fine, but if I say okay let’s go get lunch, he will get upset.
  • He has been speaking a lot more lately and has started to put words together. He said his first sentence back when my family was down here after the Charleston vacation. He said “Where’d neigh go?”
  • I’ve noticed that in big crowds or loud situations he becomes a lot more reserved and a bit bashful. The other day he came with me to a Relief Society activity that was a book gift exchange. The gifts were in the center of the circle, and I asked him if he wanted to go get one because it was our turn. He started to walk towards the center but then everyone said “oh Kenny! you are so cute! good job!” and he started crying, ran back to me, and hid his head in my legs.


  • For a while, he was especially attached to me. He would only let me put him down for bed and naps. Within the last week or so, he has really started becoming more clingy towards Ken. He will say “dada” straight for 30+ minutes leading up to Ken coming home if I let it slip that he will be home soon. (Seriously. Not an exaggeration. I just put him out on the porch so I don’t have to listen to it.)
  • My favorite word that he says is “ahmie” which is his way to say snowman. I have no idea why he calls them “ahmies” but if he sees anything that resembles a snowman (Pillsbury doughboy, Michelin man, etc.) he gets super excited and starts screaming “ahmie!”


^^^Helping himself to “some” oatmeal squares. (The other day when we were in the store getting oatmeal squares, he got so super excited that we put them in the cart. The lady next to me said “I am glad to see that out of all the cereal he is getting excited over oatmeal squares.”)


^^^Getting his summer reading prize from the library. (He knows the street we turn on to when we are going to the library so he gets really excited and starts yelling “bibrary!”)


^^^Showing off the stickers Nanny got him. And yes, he is smiling. (We’ve been trying to work on his smile, and he now looks at the camera instead of up at the ceiling, but is this grimace any better? Ha.)

We love this little guy and his fun personality. He definitely keeps it interesting around here and keeps us on our toes. He really is such a sweet boy.

Oh and coincidentally, happy 20 months, Kenny!

Meet Doggie, “Bear”, and Puppy

For the longest time I would read or hear about how babies/toddlers can become attached to certain objects. And I just couldn’t relate. Kenny showed zero preference to any stuffed animals, blankets, toys, etc. 

About 6 weeks ago that changed. 

Meet Doggie, “Bear” and Puppy-

And as you can see, the stuffed animals are actually all dogs, but we have to call one “bear” because it’s hard to distinguish between the three of them. (Can you guess what Kenny’s favorite animal is?) Kenny treats these dogs like little babies. It has made me feel like I have three more kids I need to take care of, which maybe is good practice for when the babe comes in January. (We find out the gender in less than 2 weeks!)

Kenny makes sure that the animals get food when we sit down for meals and snacks, get diaper changes, get their clothes changed for the day, get shoes, etc. For the first few days I thought it was cute, but sometimes it is hard to have patience when your 19 month old insists (over and over and over) that you go find doggie because he needs to eat food with us even though we are in a hurry. 

But really, it is cute. He loves the stuffed animals so much. They were all given to him (Oma, Papa, and Nanny). “Bear” already has two holes on his back because he gets so much love. And it is really cute when Kenny does share them with other kids. (It happens occasionally, but only if he really likes you . . . and typically he will want it right back.)

He also has a favorite blanket. It is a Cars blanket, so it has Lightening McQueen and Mater on it. (Trucks. Surprise! Not.) He thinks it is the best, and he loves to be wrapped in it like a cape. Sorry there’s no picture. Maybe another post I will get one, but right now he is down for a nap and ain’t no way I’m waking the babe for anything. :)