Friday, January 28, 2011

16 Month-Old Girly-Girl

Violet has turned a corner. She is now clearly becoming more interested in girly things. I am happy for this turn but also sad at seeing how old she is getting. She is 16 months today. 16 months! Wow!

When we go to get her in the morning she is standing up in her crib waiting to be retrieved. As soon as we have her in our arms she starts pointing to either her hair bows on her door or her finger puppet sheep on her shelf. Her bows are kept on a photo board with ribbons tied diagonally across a piece of fabric. We hang her bows or, hair pretties as my family calls them, on it. First we change her diaper and then she immediately wants one in her hair. She still wants to play with them during the day at times, but she is getting better about leaving them in.

Another girly aspect is her cooing when she sees pictures of babies or baby animals. She starts imitating me before I have even made a sound. She awws and oohs over babies on TV or in books and does the same with sweet pictures of baby bunnies or kitties. I mean, really, what girl doesn't love bunnies and kittens. Granted, I know I do this all the time, but she is doing it now on her own. :) She even scrunches up her nose and makes a little sound like it is just too cute for her to handle. I love it!

She dances. As you may have seen in her videos on flickr, she is quite a mover. She gracefully pulls her little arm up next to her ear and turns around in circles. Sometimes I ask for a recital and sometimes I am just given one in the spur of a moment. Anytime it happens I still giggle and wonder where she gets her moves.

She has finally taken to hugging and wanting her stuffed animals and dolls. Lucy, her lamb, and her finger puppet sheep are her current faves, but anytime I hold up her giant hippo she squeezes it continually. She has become the attack hugger. She particularly loves hugging Niya, her best bud and neighbor.

Lucy, her token tupperware piece and a block! What a fun time!

All in all, this girl is so much fun. Yes, she follows me around like its her job. Yes, she hugs my knees and won't let go when I am in the kitchen. Yes, she unpacks and packs the tupperware drawer all day long, but goodness she is a hoot!

 Playing blocks with Niya-friend, as we call her.

 Chatting on her phone in one of her favorite places, Daddy's arms.

Trying on Mommy's jacket. Daniel thinks she looks like a little Jedi.
These 16 months have been a joy!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Learning the Ways...

I am learning the ways of the coupon masters. I have studied under several jedi but now I am finally taking the course towards my own destiny...

Okay, enough Star Wars jargon.

 I am starting to really enjoy the coupon/bargain hunting. I have established rules that I will not set out on a shopping trip unless I need at least 50% of what I am hoping to buy so as to not get carried away with the rush of adrenaline that comes with saving loads of bucks.

These are a couple CVS trips I have run.

$47 for this trip and

$30 for this one.

Between both trips I saved over $100.

I am pretty proud. I know there are tons of amazing women out there who have cut their budgets drastically by getting the Sunday paper for the coupons, and printed coupons offline. I aim to put a nice dent in our food, toiletries, and baby budget.

Here's to a good start!

Friday, January 07, 2011

Christmas Time Part 2

We awoke the next morning around 10am. We were so thankful Violet slept in too. What a joy to be spoiled by a baby that likes to sleep!  We got on the road after an early lunch and headed for Arizona. Unfortunately we got stuck in some after Christmas traffic and it took us a little longer, but we arrived that evening safely.

We were so happy to spend a few days with Daniel's brother and family. We spent a lot of time in their lovely home just enjoying each other's company. We exchanged gifts the day after we arrived.

Here is Vi with her new book about snow. What a great read!

 The boys opening their restaurant buddies.

Meghan opening her gift.

Everett getting some cuddles.

Violet was so proud of herself. She could climb into this little rocking chair on her own and rock.

Auntie Meghan and our new niece, Fiona. She is a doll.

Braden's killer smile.

Trevor and his smiling eyes.

Everett and Fiona

Violet was fascinated with Fiona. Anytime Fiona would cry Violet would stare with such a serious face. She looked so concerned. Violet is just learning more about babies and sitting next to her cousin made for some sweet photos.

Precious face.

I was sitting next to them both and Violet felt like Fiona needed a kiss, and another and another. Vi must have kissed her about 8 times. She just kept kissing her forehead without any encouragement. I was just there to make sure Violet didn't lose her balance and fall on Fiona. It was a pretty sweet moment.

Floor time with Fiona.

I guess Violet wondered what the view for Fiona was like. She just laid down next to her. :)

Hello little one!

We soaked up a little Arizona sun one day by going and picking a few oranges at a local man's grove and then visiting a date farm. We didn't take any tours but we did enjoy a yummy date shake and bought ourselves a big box of dates. Daniel and I have decided we will be regularly purchasing dates from now on. They are so yummy!

Uncle Everett got some great snuggles with Vi. Here they are giving Eskimo kisses.

So sweet. He will be one special Daddy to little Fiona girl as she grows up. He already is to his dear boys!

We had a great time with y'all. Thanks for letting us hang out with you between the holidays!

Christmas Time Part 1

This year we spent Christmas Eve at church for a night of music and readings. It was a special service and I had the joy of conducting a choir put together just for the evening. I was quite nervous about the whole ordeal but eventually got the hang of it over several rehearsals. I am thankful the choir just wanted to sing and didn't mind my choral directing deficiencies. We had a social time afterward that wrapped the night up beautifully.

Violet got all dolled up for the evening.

On Christmas morning we took our time just lounging around and eating breakfast. We did not have to worry about Violet waking us up early this year for presents. I hope that is something we will not ever have to worry about. We will see.

We opened gifts from my side of the family on Christmas Eve day. My family was all together in Maryland opening gifts that night so it made it our afternoon. We got on the webcam and shared that time together. I really enjoyed it and I know Violet and Daniel did too. It was a sweet, unexpected surprise.

Christmas morning we opened gifts from each other and Daniel's side of the family.

 Here is Violet with her new fleece blanket from Aunt Deb and Uncle Gary. We (even Daniel and I) have already used it several times. Thank You!

I saw this sucker and had to get it. So much fun!

Violet received all kinds of special toys and gifts and we are thankful for everyone's gifts. We have enjoyed them all.

Later that afternoon we had our neighbors and other friends from church over for dinner.
Here we are after clean-up.

The gentleman enjoying their beverages.

After talking it over with these wise families with children we decided to drive to Arizona that evening instead of the planned next morning. They were all encouraging us to drive during the night so Vi would get more sleep. Well, they were right. We left that night around 8:45 and drove until 3am or so. We spent the night at Edwards Air Force Base in southern California and we were so thankful for getting the trip halfway done in the night. I know Vi appreciated it as well. She slept almost the whole way.

Molars Indeed

Violet started getting her top molars a few days before Christmas. (She won't tolerate a photo. I think she knows it will make its rounds on the internet and come back to haunt her in her later years. Already so wise...) There was really no extra fussiness that led up to it. One day Daniel just felt them in her mouth when he was cleaning her face after dinner.

It immediately reminded me that I needed to make her 15 month appointment with her doctor. We will be heading in on Monday and see what he has to say about our little molar girl. Plus side, she is learning to chew...down side, still working on the whole bite thing. I guess when gums can barely cut through a banana it is bound to happen. Ha!