September 29, 2009

Fall Reflections...

Summer days have gone by the wayside...

We strive to absorb fall's beautiful sunshine and breathe the fresh, cool air.

Fall's trickery drips deceit. One 90 degree day does not promise another to follow.

We may be under dressed- though we are overjoyed, still, to be outdoors.

The air feels cool, breezing through her blond hair, in between her baby toes; even colder as it grazes her tongue.

We think back to all the things we've done this year- all the milestones reached, all the memories harvested... each piece a building block to our family story. We are reminded of the sense that a new chapter is due to begin, as little tummies peek out of too-small summer clothing...

We use our experience and wisdom to encourage others to blaze new trails...

And, too, we follow blindly, ignorant and blissful...

Ahead one moment-

In the shadows the next-

But, one thing is for certain...

Two is much friendlier than one.

September 28, 2009

Pumpkin Patch ♥ ♥ ♥

This past weekend, we were able to have a go at one of our favorite family activities- the pumpkin patch!!

We have the luxury of living near one of the greatest pumpkin patches ever- Walter's Pumpkin Patch. I've said it before, and I'll say it again... by far my favorite find since we've lived in this great state!

We went to celebrate LuLu's 2nd birthday! Sassy and I got ready and rode up with Lynzee and crew while Tyler and Little A ran the 5K for the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure. They met us later...

Sassy waited patiently to be picked up in the morning:

She had to say a quick hello to all the funny gourds before we could continue on:

She had her first try at a hammock. Verdict- she liked it!

She was even big enough to lug her own saucer up the hill for the tunnel slide:

Once she got up the hill, she was too scared to come down. Luckily, Daddy came just in time to rescue her slide down with her. Thank goodness for daddies!

As a group, we moseyed on over to the pillow jumper. It's so much better than a trampoline! Little A had a blast with Ty:

Sassy wanted Mom to jump with her. We had fun, too:

Tyler went crazy with the picture-taking. He loves to catch me in compromising poses. Remember this? I'm sure there are others...

So, I bring to you this lovely shot. Please, enjoy it from afar and do not, I repeat DO NOT click to enlarge or linger long enough to calculate my coronary risk factors by the amount of weight I carry in my middle or to count the number of chins visible in this picture. It is for pure entertainment only. Thanks.

The girls headed on to the corn pit next. In went two squeaky clean children. Out came 2 white dust balls with a mere hint of resemblance to my kin:

It was nearly time for lunch, so our group meandered towards the front of the patch. I thought it would be a great time for our yearly How Tall This Fall photos. Little A agreed:

Sassy... not so much:

The sun was in her eyes...

Her mood lifted as soon as the kids boarded the pumpkin train:

Meanwhile, Ty and Little A basking in the glory of fall:

Little A had her turn to explore the gourds:

Next, it was time for lunch followed by beautiful fall cupcakes:

LuLu was a mighty pleased birthday girl:

We ventured towards the back of the patch for some playground fun. Little A felt big & mighty on this boulder:

Sassy made us all dizzy as we watched her whiz down the slide:

Tiredness crept in, and Sassy took a brief rest with Mr. Scarecrow:

Then, she rested on her favorite perch:

She perked up just long enough to do some quick mining for treasure:

And, we were d.o.n.e.

We never even made it out to the patch to choose pumpkins...

Here's hoping to many more beautiful fall weekends ahead and another wonderful family trip to Walter's in our future!

~ "Blue" Photo Challenge ~

I've often glanced over the weekly I ♥ faces photo challenges, and I just knew this was the week for me to enter when I saw the theme- "Blue".

I am pretty certain that a lot of the entries this week will have some sad, grumpy, down-in-the-dumps subjects. However, there is only one thing that comes to my mind when I think of the color blue.

That is my baby girl's searing blue eyes. She has unique eyes- people comment on them all the time. They have a very dark ring on the perimeter, and then fade into an icy blue in the center. One thing is for certain- they are striking.

From her beautiful blue peepers, to her little blue sundress, those faded blue jeans, and her blue converse All-Stars... this girl is blue from head to toe...

This photo was taken at the Light the Night walk for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Our family walked in honor of one of the girls playmates, recently deemed in remission from leukemia! Hooray! We all wore blue, his favorite color!

Blue has never invoked such cheer until now!

September 26, 2009

Sick Days...

Oh, what a week we've had...

Poor Sassy became ill early in the week. She was running a pretty high fever, and complained of a sore throat and a tummy ache. We had her checked out Monday to make sure everything was OK- at that point, it was.

By Wednesday afternoon, she hit a wall. She had a 104+ temp. and was very lethargic. She woke up from her nap coughing, and couldn't catch her breath. We rushed her back in to the pediatrician, who sent her straight to the hospital for a chest x-ray and a flu swab after hearing her breathing patterns. They gave her a treatment for her breathing, and we followed up first thing Thursday morning.

Thank goodness, her flu swab was negative. She was dehydrated, and on the verge of being admitted. Our Dr. kept her in the office until he saw that she would take a few sips here and there of some fluids before he let us return home. Luckily, with some continued steroids for her breathing, and a bit of cough medicine after docs approval, Sassy started to turn the corner. Finally, her appetite and urge to drink came back, and we were out of the woods, as far as hydration goes.

Needless to say, it was a rough week, all around. Both Tyler and I had to take time off of work to stay home and care for her. The sickness aside, we became quite stir crazy after sitting in the house for 5 consecutive days! Especially Little A, who remained healthy, remarkably!

Once Sassy got the jump back in her step, and we decided to venture out to the backyard for some much needed fresh air. Sassy sported her new Illinois State shirt, thanks to Auntie Kaitlin. Go Redbirds:

Little A was thrilled to be outside:

Rather, tickled:

I can't get enough of her cRaZy hair:

After a while, she was thinking enough already, mom:

But, she just can't help but act charming:

Meanwhile, Sassy worked on her golf swing:

And picked some clovers:

And practiced her tap-dancing steps:

And, she still managed to be a little goofy:

Sassy picked one of the last seeded dandelions in the backyard:

She was pretty happy about her find:

She spent some time looking at it:

Then, she blew:

And took a deep breath:

And blew again:

Oh, my silly Sassy... I love her so!

September 24, 2009

Day-Day Tales...

There are certain moments that hold a special place in my memory since becoming a mom. It's so fun to see your child happy, and it's even more fun to see the little gears of their mind just turning away...

I remember the first time Sassy became thrilled with a toy. She was probably around 6 months old, and we were on one of our many trips to Target. I usually made it a point to show her a new baby toy or two when we perused the baby aisle, picking up those necessities that sent us on frequent trips to Target- diapers, wipes, rice cereal...

I casually grabbed a little Leapfrog frog on a baby ring, and showed it to Sassy. She looked at it like she did every other toy... so what, mom? I pressed the frogs belly, and he started counting to ten in a sing-songy voice. She immediately lit up. Her feet were a-kicking. Her arms were waving in the air. She thought it was the greatest thing she had ever seen.

I let her keep it in the cart as we continued our shopping, having no intention to purchase the thing. She was so amused throughout the entire shopping trip, I decided it was completely worth the $8.99 price tag. Oh, and how could I possibly pass up something that could make her exude smiles and gleefully coo on demand?

Sassy played with that frog day in and day out. She loved him up and down. She wanted to take him everywhere! We later ended up buying the girl version as well- she sang the ABC's. She was never as big a hit as her male counterpart.

Another of my favorite moments with Sassy happened in Michael's. We were shopping with my friend, Dana, for her daughter's birthday party. Sassy was right around 11 months old. We were walking up and down the aisles, and Sassy was getting a bit restless, so I grabbed a little plastic dinosaur figurine to hold. As soon as I gave it to her, she let out a huge R-O-A-R.

I whipped my head around and looked at her with amazement. Did she really just do that? I almost didn't believe it, but then I gave in, feeding into her new-found discovery. "Yes, yes... a dinosaur says roar," I told her. We couldn't wait until Daddy came home from work to show him what she had learned. Again and again, she delighted in making dinosaur commands, and was equally as thrilled with the praise she received from two very proud parents!

All these fond memories came flooding back to the forefront of my mind after a trip to Target last week. We were making our usual trek down the toy aisles at the end of our trip; a reward for good behavior on the girls part. We rounded the corner to head down the aisle with all of the dolls and doll equipment.

Just as the dolls come into focus, Little A starts squealing and saying day day, day day, day day! "Baby?" I asked her. Day day, day day, she said. I picked up a box with a Little Mommy soft baby doll in it, and handed it over. As soon as I did, Little A cried Day day! and starting giving the baby kisses. It was the cutest.thing.EVER, not to mention the first time I had seen her consciously label something other than mama, dada, her name for sister, and other bath and food related words.

She was so excited to hold and kiss this baby doll. Needless to say, it was as good as hers the moment she began her little display. Ever since, she has been faithfully caring for her day day, and I am loving every bit of it!

September 23, 2009

Bella Bella Dancerella...

After waiting patiently for months and months, my little Sassy-bella finally got her chance to start dance class!!!!!

This is SO exciting for our family- I grew up loving dance, and I couldn't wait for her to have her turn. She's not been feeling 100% this week, but she sure did light up Monday morning when we told her that it was time!

She rushed to get her Attitudes bag from last week, complete with her brand new shiny tap shoes and special extra-wide ballet shoes to fit her chubby little feet.

You could feel her excitement as she pulled on her pink tights and her black leotard. She didn't even put up a fight when I told her we had to pull her hair back. Ballet rules, after all...

We took a few pictures outside before the rain started coming down. She was happy to oblige:

Tyler was able to watch her first class, as well. We dropped Little A off in the child care area, and were 20 minutes early for her class. She waited SO patiently. I had to take a picture of her before her class:

Her teacher helped her put her ballet shoes on. According to Sassy, she was vewy, vewy nice.

The girls stretched:

The did some ballet work:

They did some listening exercises:

Then, they worked on tap:

Sassy was thrilled, and she loved her first class as much as I thought she would! I am so excited to see her participate and develop even further!

Way to go, Sassy. We are so proud of you!