The (mis) adventures of our (sort of) young family

Family Fun

Chicken Little

Until about two weeks ago, Jordan was not a fan of meats. He didn’t want anything to do with any baby food that had meat in it, even when we tried to hide it under some sweet potatoes or carrots. Relentless in our quest to make our little one a meat-o-saurus, we tried everything. But Jordan was much happier eating garlic rolls at the Damon’s than turkey, rice and vegetables out of the jar.

Then one day, Jordan started taking food off other kids’ high chairs at daycare and eating it. In this feat of tallness, he discovered his best friend Drew’s chicken nuggets and ate them all. Now, I think he’s in danger of becoming a chicken nugget. He eats three a meal, lunch and dinner. If you don’t give him nuggets, he sits there and yells. If you have no chicken nuggets, the only other placating item is Townhouse crackers.

So after all our hard work had no effect whatsoever, Mr. No Meat has become Chicken Little all on his own. There’s probably a lesson in this, but since he’s still not sleeping through the night, we’re too tired to find it.

(Food note: He also tried hot dogs, but he went so crazy over them that we were worried he’d choke and put them away for another couple of weeks. And I mean crazy, like won-the-lottery crazy or when-he-almost-catches-one-of-the-cats crazy.)

Jordan the Netizen Finds Peanut Butter Jelly Time

I know you guys are not necessarily up on (or even interested in) Internet "culture." But there’s this thing that went around the Internet a couple of years ago called "Peanut Butter Jelly Time." Don’t ask me why or how. These things just happen.

Anyway, Jordan overheard this one and no matter what he’s doing, it gets his attention–every time. He bolts upright and starts looking for where the song is coming from.

Anyway, thought that I’d share it with you because it even cracks us up after all this time.

March Madness!

Are you ready? We are. Jordan already knows what to think about UNC. If only I had a shirt about Duke…



Jordan goes mobile and learns to love Propel

This weekend, Jordan decided to steal my Propel and drink directly from it. He didn’t want it in a cup or a bottle, and he didn’t care that he was pouring it all over himself. He just wanted as much of it in his face as possible. For all those interested, it was Kiwi-Strawberry flavor. I had always taken him for a Grape man myself, but I was clearly mistaken. He just cracked me up though, sucking on the side of the bottle.

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Jordan has also learned to scoot across the floor backwards on his stomach, apparently for quite a distance. We have only anecdotal daycare evidence about distance, but we have seen the backwards phenomenon in a small area ourselves. Now, he can’t move forwards or understand why he’s going backwards, so he ends up caught in a lot of corners, but he’s officially on the move. Our only respite is that he still can’t flip over from back to front (that we know of), so we can still flip him over like a turtle to run to the bathroom or grab a snack. It’s exciting, though, that he’s learned to move, and he looks pretty funny doing it, too.

New Secret Society Formed

The Order of the Bear, a new secret society, has been formed. These rare photos show the special bear-shaped headdress that indicates membership in the group. Not much is known about them other than they hardly sleep and they change lots of diapers.

The President:


Other Members:


Oh what a night…

Actually, I probably should qualify right up front that it wasn’t really a night. It was more of a late afternoon, but since it still gets dark so early, it could be counted as night. Allen and I dropped Jordan off at Mango’s at 4pm sharp yesterday and proceeded to go on a date to see Cloverfield. It was very exciting. At first, we weren’t really sure what to do. We just kind of stared at each other. We had about half an hour before the movie, so we went to the coolest store ever, The Great Indoors, to marvel in its wonder. If you have never been to The Great Indoors (and I hadn’t), it’s kind of a cross between Bed Bath and Beyond, Best Buy and The Home Depot Expo Center. I had never been in a store where, if I walked a straight line, I could go from flat panel TVs to blenders to $12,000 refrigerators to giant slabs of granite. And in case you got thirsty due to too much strenuous amazement, there was a Starbucks where you could rest for awhile. Amazing indeed.

The movie was pretty neat, even without the whole first-time-out-since-Jordan’s-birth thing. The only issue for me was my evil motion sickness. I have very big problems with motion sickness: in cars, on swirly rides and trying to watch those cool flying or driving simulations. Since Cloverfield is shot with a handheld camera, I spent a good part of the movie breathing deeply and staring at the chair in front of me while glancing up at the screen as often as I could. So I should say that the pieces of the movie I saw were pretty neat. And I hate motion sickness.

Jordan, by the way, got us back for our enjoyment by screaming at the top of his lungs for most of the night. He doesn’t like the idea of sleeping by himself, and he was stubborn enough that even at his most tired, he still would manage to ramp back up into screaming. He was definitely trying to teach us that his stubbornness was way stronger than our patience. I guess we’ll have to wait a little longer for him to start falling asleep alone at night, because I doubt either of us is going to grow new patience genes in the next two to four weeks.

Quick update

I’m on borrowed time, since Allen needs to prepare for an interview tomorrow, but I wanted to put up some new photos of Jordan (since you’re asking for them).



Jordan in his 18-month Ohio State outfit, courtesy of his Uncle Alan. The booties are already too small!

More photos below the fold…


Happy New Year!

We hope everyone had a wonderful new year. Allen and I are in that stage in life/familyhood where we woke up to watch the ball drop, kissed each other, and rolled back over to go to sleep. We drank our festive toast the next night, when we were more awake. Jordan didn’t care much for watching the ball drop, but he has been enjoying all the bowl games he gets to watch on HDTV.

Our move was ridiculously stressful, but we managed to get ourselves and at least some of our stuff up to Columbus. I would be very happy not to have to drive through Chattanooga ever again, since people seem to crash into each other or guardrails every time we need to drive through. I will say that you haven’t lived unless you’ve been inching along in traffic, driving with your left hand, while feeding a baby in the backseat with your right. Allen would probably say you haven’t lived unless you’ve driven through a construction zone with no shoulders in a 26′ Penske truck with an Altima attached to the back of it.

Alan, Daniel and Jeremy came to help us unload everything and were both amazing and hilarious. They kept challenging each other as to who could lift what, and then we all learned what happens if you don’t get all the water out of the washer before moving it. Perhaps next time they’ll tilt it up instead of down when navigating the stairs. We all went to a little dive bar in the shopping complex across the street and had surprisingly good chili cheese fries. There was some great 80’s hair to be seen, as is usually the case in Ohio local bars.

I’m sure we’ll write more and post some new photos soon, but we just figured it would be good to update the blog to say, yes, we’re in Columbus now and that we arrived with ourselves and our stuff relatively undamaged. Also, I wanted to be able to ask if anyone knew that they didn’t know how to plow the roads here in Columbus?

You guys rock!


Go team Smithstein!

Uncles Alan, Daniel and Jeremy and Aunt Karlee, I can’t wait to see you guys and show you all my new tricks…like drooling and grabbing for things. Uncle David, Aunt Nicole and Cousin Aleah, thanks for volunteering to watch that loud dog, but Uncle David, I expect you to be here to visit me on work trips at least once a month!

The Best Family in the World

We are so blessed to have such a wonderful family. In this crazy move process, I have been completely freaking out about getting everything done. My biggest fear was getting to Columbus with two of us and a baby and having no way to get our things off the truck. We don’t know anyone in Columbus, and the image of us in the snow with no way to get our things inside literally had me in tears on Monday.

Our amazing family came to the rescue though.


Happy Turkey Day Everyone!

We’re waiting on everyone to arrive, but we’ve got on our Thanksgiving duds!


Signage: Is Florida the Capital of Freaky Signs?

During our road trips, we frequently see signs that cause us to stop, pull out our camera and take a picture. I figured since I’m up at 3 in the morning–and Jordan won’t let me go back to sleep–I’d start pulling some of them out for you to see.

Florida seems to be a hot spot. We travel a lot through Florida since much of our family has migrated there. Over time I’ve begun to wonder if Florida is the freaky sign capital of the world.

Here’s a collection of signs that we both found during our trips to and from Florida, many of them in a single town–Lake City, Florida.

Daniel Crapps Real Estate
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Yes. Somewhere in Lake City, Florida the United States, there is a guy named Daniel Crapps. I am not making this up. Not only does Daniel Crapps refuse to change his last name (I guess he thinks that Crapps is good enough) but he also has decided to put it on a billboard large enough and bright enough that it can probably be seen from just about anywhere in Lake City. If you live in Lake City and you don’t know Daniel Crapps, you don’t know sh$%.

This guy probably has a business card too. God, I’d love to have one of them.


Serendipity Strikes! The Sneeze.

Ok. So here’s the story. From day one Jordan has done this funny little sneeze that Cheryl and I (and last night our chiropractor) have been the only people to witness. You never know when a sneeze is going to come, so its almost impossible to get on video. Well today, serendipity struck.

While recording some video for Cheryl to see of Jordan being hypnotized by the black and white pole in his seat, the sneeze came. Now, just like everything that we witness, it’s possible that all babies do this. However, I’ve never seen it, and I’m betting that you haven’t either. If you have, leave a comment with your story. We’d love to read it!

And now ladies and gentlemen, for your viewing pleasure, the sneeze.


Yahoo Sports Pick’em Confusion: Where are the Browns fans?

Okay, I’m a bit confused.

Why am I the ONLY person who picked Cleveland to win when they are having one of the best seasons that they’ve had in a while. I’m not even from Cleveland!

Family where’s your hometown team spirit?! I can forgive Nicole for picking Pittsburgh, but the rest of you guys…I must say that I’m a bit disappointed.

Oh wait. I think I understand now. I just found a blog called “The Disappointment Zone: Musings of a Cleveland Sports Fan”

Well, maybe if all goes well, they’ll beat the Pittsburgh Steelers today and you’ll all be well on the road to recovery from years of disappointment. Until then, I guess I have to cheer the team on. 🙂

Go Browns!

Happy Halloween Contest!

Happy Halloween!

I don’t know about you, but when I was in elementary school, I remember the school would often have a giant pumpkin and a contest where you would guess the weight of the pumpkin…or when there was no good pumpkin, they’d have you guess the number of candy corns in a jar.

Well, we here at have our own giant pumpkin contest. So please, guess the weight of our pumpkin:

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He was just weighed today at his one month appointment, so we have exact numbers. Leave a comment in the Comments section of this post to guess. The prize is a secret. More angles of the pumpkin available below for accurate weight guessing:

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The Secret Life of Baby Hands

I don’t know if anyone else has noticed, but it seems like babies hands have a different agenda than the baby.

We’ve been watching Jordan and he is not getting along with his hands at all–and they aren’t getting along with him either.

Each time I put something that Jordan really wants in his mouth in front of him, he acts exactly as expected. He opens his mouth and gets excited. Yet whenever the object in question begins heading for his mouth, his hands completely block the path of least resistance. Sometimes they go directly in the mouth filling it up and making it impossible for anything else to get in there at all. Its even more surprising that the hands will even push things away that he actually wants.

When he’s falling asleep they will frequently attack, startling him into tears. They scratch him and even poke him in the eye on occasion!


Football Picks

I’d just like to say that I’m still having fun with football picks this year, but it was much more fun last year when the whole Ross-Rothstein-Smith clan was playing. It’s one thing for four or five of us to kick Snealio’s butt, but it’s much more enjoyable when we’re all doing it. Andrea, Mom, did you chicken out on us? And Daniel, what happened to you after about week two? Without the whole group, it seems like it’s just the usual: Allen and Nicole duking it out to beat the rest of us in yet another pool.

Next year, we’re going to let Jordan pick as well, so the rest of you better get yourselves together. And Arizona, the next time you’re going to lose two quarterbacks in as many games, if you could let me know before I pick you to win, I’d appreciate it.