Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Nothing Much to Report

Seeing as how it is already Tuesday and I hadn't posted since Friday, I knew some of the girls' loyal fans would be getting upset with me. I won't mention any names or anything...

I really don't have much to say. We had a nice weekend hanging out with friends. Padyn spent as much time in the pool as she possibly could. She can now jump in from the side and swim to you without touching you or coming up for air first. It's pretty impressive if I do say so myself.
Check out the artwork on her arm. It was an amazingly beautiful series of butterflies going up her arm. She got it at Daddy's company picnic earlier that day.
Kate hasn't been her usual perky self lately. I mean, she's still the happiest baby we know, but she's had some crabby moments this week, especially at bedtime. She's also had some unusual bowel movements, so I am attributing her off-ness to a phantom canine tooth that must be pushing it's way through her top gums. We'll see in a week or so if I'm correct.
Cheese grin. Where did she learn that?
You probably won't hear from us much this week. We are in Sacramento staying with my sister for the next 5 days. I have a teacher training thingo to attend this week and since Daddy won't be around this weekend, we'll just stick around here and enjoy the cool 88 degree high that is forecast for Sunday. (Today was 103 degrees when we pulled up at 5pm. Gotta love the valley.)
So until then, enjoy these pics from last Friday. You can see that Padyn is becoming more fearless in the pool, and Kate gets along well with her cousin, Claire. They are such buds, they exchange sippy cups without blinking an eye. It was highly entertaining to watch them interact. We'll have to get together more often.
Claire and Kate hanging out with their sippies.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Two New

I have new things to report about Kate's speaking and eating progress. Both come in pairs.

She now eats two new fruits-blueberries and cantelope. The cantelope is not as solid as the berries, but if you give them to her on your fork, there's an 83% chance she will actually eat them. That's not bad considering a week ago she absolutely refused to put them anywhere near her mouth.

Today she had two new words-"up" and "outside." Both were used correctly in context. She, of course, got what she wanted in each context, as it was just too cute how she asked for them.

Oh, and right now she is trying to pick up two balls at the same time. That one won't be as successful as the other pairs, I'm afraid.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Photo Friday-Week In Review

We had a busy week this week, and I have the pictures to prove it. Some of them are already up on Flickr, but I have not titled them yet. So, if you looked at them and wondered where the heck we were, read on! You are about to find out.

I should start with last Saturday, which was my 15 year high school reunion. I didn't take any pictures, but only because I was too busy talking to people I hadn't seen in, well, 15 years. It was a strange time-warp sort of experience, but it was far better than I feared it would be. Even Joel had a good time, which is high praise. It was nice to reconnect with some people I knew when I was a different person, and nice to start new relationships with people I didn't really know before. I discovered that I'm not the only one that likes myself better as an adult than a teenager.
On Sunday there was the Wharf to Wharf. Again, due to lack of forethought, there are no pictures of the event. But, there are some fun pictures of the girls blowing bubbles on Grandpa and Mimi's back deck.amazed by bubbles
kisses, kisses

Nothing very interesting happened on Monday. We hung out, ate, napped, swam with some friends and generally were lazy. Nothing exciting enough to take pictures of.

On Tuesday we drove down to Gilroy to "go on rides" at Gilroy Gardens (formerly Bonfante Gardens). We had never been there before due to my feelings of crowds and theme park rides that spin in endless circles, but our church was going and my friend could get us cheap tickets, so I decided it was worth the risk.
My low expectations were crushed. We had a great time. There were even rides that Kate could go on all by herself. I would say this park is perfect for kids 3-6. We'll definitely be going back. It's worth the hour drive. Not only is it fun for them, but it's a clean, beautiful place. It's a horticultural theme park, so there are all these lovely gardens, that of course I did not get to go into because a 3 year old has no interest in horticulture. But, they were nice to look at while walking by.
on the carousel-Padyn started off on the horse, but quickly moved to the bench when Kate didn't want to get on the horse next to her
Kate and Josh taking the firetruck for a spin
Emily and Padyn doing "no hands" on the Worm & Apple ride (Padyn had been asking to go on this ride all day. She spotted it on the map when we first entered the park and was insistent that we go find it!)
Emily looks thrilled, doesn't she? At least Padyn is having a good time.Wednesday we drove back over "The Hill" to Santa Cruz to meet an old friend of mine at the beach. Angie and her family couldn't make it to the reunion since they were having a reunion of a different sort in Yosemite. So, Padyn and Kate got to meet their friends Aidan and Connor at Mommy's favorite beach. Padyn mostly wanted to play in the sand and watch Connor destroy the sand fort his Daddy had made. I was sure Kate would hate the freezing cold water, but being the mom I am, I stuck her feet in anyway. Big mistake. She LOVED it. She kept walking out towards the wave as it broke. No understanding of wave action whatsoever. Padyn kept saying she wanted to go in the water, but as soon as the water touched her toes, she bolted back up to dry land. Chicken.
beach beauties
Connor killing the castlesYesterday? I don't remember. OH! That's right. That was the previous post. And today? Well, I took about 90 pictures today, but they are still on my camera, so you'll have to wait until another post to see Kate and her cousin, Claire, playing together.

Go to Flickr to see all the pics. Happy Friday and Happy Weekend.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

A True Ballerina in the Making

Today was Padyn's last day of ballet at the rec center. She certainly has improved since her first class only 5 weeks ago. She actually watches her teacher now (although she did move to a different spot so she could see herself in the mirror today), and can put her feet into first position all by herself. Her arabesque isn't half bad, either.

Daddy got to come watch today with me and Kate. I think Padyn was pretty proud to have such an audience. She would look over at us and break out a huge grin. But you know she loves the dancing more than anything else because she never came over to us or got shy or intimidated by the whole thing. She hung with the group and did what the teacher asked her to do every single time and never ran over to us for reassurance. (Well, there was that time she needed me to fix her hair, but that was it.)For that reason, I broke down and signed her up for a whole year of ballet and tap starting in the fall. (That's right, Grandpa...TAP dancing!) I figured it was pretty safe since she obviously LOVES dancing. Plus, I know from personal experience that this school is pretty good. It's the studio where my sisters and I grew up dancing. Padyn's teacher is going to be OUR old teacher, Marti. How awesome is that? I don't know how old Marti is now, but I think it's pretty sweet that she's going to teach two generations to do plies and time steps. I wonder if her first performance will be to "On the Good Ship, Lollipop" just like Mommy's was 27 years ago. I guess we'll find out in the spring.
Tap shoes! I get to buy her tap shoes! I think I'm just as excited as Padyn is.

Monday, July 23, 2007

"The Best Little Road Race in California"

We did it! Joel and I both ran the entire 6 miles of the Wharf to Wharf on Sunday. It was great! 15,000 people (plus all the "bandits" who were unregistered), a bunch of crazy bands, lots of hoses being sprayed by the people who live along the route, and plenty of California sunshine made for a really enjoyable race. I was actually surprised at how much I enjoyed it. Well, until the last mile, anyway. Thank God the end was downhill because the last mile was the only time I started to feel like I might not make it. But we did! Hurrah!

We are very proud of ourselves, even if our knees and hip flexors aren't terribly happy with us today. Actually, I feel OK, but Joel is hurting a bit. He claims he has never run over 2 miles before, so I can see how his knees would be mad at him. Our time of 1 hr 6 minutes was decent considering the first mile took us 14.5 minutes. Once we passed the 2nd mile, we were able to keep a more steady pace of a 10 minute mile, but before that, it was just too crowded. I think it took us at least 3 minutes just to cross the starting line. I was surprised by how crowded it was the entire race. I was picturing everyone being more spread out by mile 2, but we were pretty packed in there up until the end. Next year I may try to start farther up just to get a more accurate time.

So now I'm thinking about what to do next. I was interested in doing the Danskin Women's Triathlon, but there are none by me this year. I like that it's only women and it's a sprint, so the distances are totally doable. There's a bunch of 5K and 10K races around our area, I just don't know anything about them. I'm really not interested in doing a 1/2 marathon or anything. I like my knees and don't want to wear them out at a young age. This looks fun (and messy), but I already missed the one in our area. Maybe next year now that I know about it.

So, I'll keep looking for something to keep me motivated to work out. It's been great having a tangible goal. I'd like to keep that up. Anyone want to join me?


I'm very excited. This was delivered on Saturday while we were in Santa Cruz. Gotta love Amazon.com. Not only did I get to pay half price when I pre-ordered it, but they actually delivered it on the day it came out!

But, while I am excited and can not wait to see how it all ends (Is Dumbledore really dead? Is Snape good or evil? Will Ron be killed?), I am hesitant to start it. Once I start reading it, I'll soon finish it, and once I finish it, that's it. The end. No more Harry Potter. It's a slightly depressing thought. It's similar to the series finale of Alias. I didn't watch it for months because I just didn't want it to be really over. And now, Harry will be leaving me. I'm not quite ready for that yet.

So, the final book in the Harry Potter epic sits on my dresser. It's pretty and thick and smells wonderful. Soon I will open it. Very soon. But, for now I'm just going to look at it. And if ANYONE tells me ANYTHING...well, I may have to seriously injure you.

Friday, July 20, 2007

One More

I love this picture, too, and I forgot to include it in my Photo Friday post.
Happy weekend.

Photo Friday

These are some of my favorite shots of the week.

Poser Rockstar Girl Jump!

Half Smile
Blowing Kisses

Padyn's new ballet outfit. It was a present from Grandma for Padyn being such a big girl (ie sleeping without her paci). She was SO pleased with herself.

Look! Eating! Actual fruit!

Happy Friday. We're heading down to Santa Cruz tonight, so there won't be any posts until Monday. Tomorrow is my 15 year high school reunion (15 because we never had a 10) and Sunday is the Wharf to Wharf. Wish us luck (with both endeavors).

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Things Kate Can Do

15 1/2 months old and she can:

*Follow simple directions (blow a kiss, bring that to me, give me five)

*Climb up and down the stairs on her own (as well as climb on couch, bed, and coffee table)

*Speak about 15 words

*Sign about 7 words

*Recognize and point to family members when you ask her where they are

*Put on and take off her shoes

*Drink out of a straw

*Appropriately play "Ring Around the Rosie" (she actually tries to sing the "ashes, ashes" line, and she falls down a few lines before she is supposed to fall down)

*Smile that cheesy grin when she sees the camera, AND say "teese!"

*Dance (with or without music)

*Put 1/2 the farm animal in the fridge farm magnet

*Unsnap and attempt to re-snap Snap Lock Beads

*Climb in and out of her stroller

*Buckle her stroller clips

*Jump on the bed

*Give you a kiss

*Recognize objects from a picture

*Recognize when Daddy is home by the sound of the garage door

*Melt your heart with her cuteness

Last Day of Swim Lessons

Can you believe I never brought my camera to Padyn's swim lessons?
Well, yes, you can, if you've been reading of the saga that was the swim lesson.

Today was the final day. And it was the ONLY day she:

1) Got in right away, with the rest of her class

2) Participated in almost all class activities

3) Did not need to hang out with a teacher one on one

4) Did what she was asked to do almost every time

I was very proud of her for FINALLY coming around. And it only took 8 days. I think she was pretty excited with herself, too. Well, actually, I think she was pretty excited that she doesn't have to go to swim lessons anymore. Although, she will miss the gummy bears...

And I've learned a valuable lesson these two weeks. If Padyn is to ever do swim lessons again, they need to be private or semi-private lessons. Or they need to be in a wading pool.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007


All taken today at Papa and BonBon's house.
You gotta love these girls.

14/15 and almost 16 Month Update

Kate is well into her 16th month on this earth and I haven't done an update in forever. For shame. She turned 15 months on Tuesday, July 3rd, which just so happened to be my friend and former roommate, Jules' birthday, which I completely forgot about until days later. July usually does that to me. Jack, Julie...don't count on me remembering your birthdays later this month. Something about the summer heat drops the dates from my head.

Anyway, there's so much to tell you about Katelyn, but it would make this post way too long. So, I'll probably post a few things across a couple days and hope I forgot nothing. This post is going to be about Kate's verbal skills, which have been entertaining and astonishing us lately. She had her 15 month check-up last week, and the pediatrician informed me that Kate should be saying 2 to 5 words at this age. I quickly counted up in my head and let her know that Kate could say 12 words. TWELVE! Now, don't misunderstand. YOU would have no idea what she was saying unless you spent at least a week following her around. But I spend every waking moment following her around, so it's usually clear to me what she's trying to get across.

In the last week, she's added more words to her inventory. I remember Padyn at this same age had a verbal explosion. I wrote the new words she said everyday on my calendar. And it literally was a new word everyday. Some days it was two. Kate seems to be following in her sister's footsteps. In fact, just this morning, she said her first two word sentence-Bye bye Daddy. Granted, she was imitating Padyn, but she did it perfectly, and more than once.

Here's the list of things Kate can currently vocalize and we can usually understand.

This doesn't include her signs that she doesn't speak for yet-please, more, milk and dog.

dat-doo or tant-too thank you

my mine

ha hat

ah duh all done

dadda Daddy

adada Padyn

bah ball

byesh or by-by bye-bye

highsh or hi-iehi

shoosh shoes

dis this

dat that

momma Mommy

bahbah Papa or Bon Bon (it sounds the same when she addresses both of them)

aboo apple

bo-bo bubble

ah-boo peek-a-boo

teese cheese

She also has a word for Bear Bear and her paci, but I can't quite figure it out yet. And she clearly thinks she can talk. She'll look intently at me and spew forth nonsense in an extremely animated manner. I have NO IDEA what she's talking about, but the best part is, she can usually repeat it EXACTLY like she said it the first time. Verbal development in children is amazing!

Ok, really quickly, I'll also give you her stats from last week's appointment-

weight-23 lb, 13 oz
length-30.5 inches

She can point to her head, nose and tummy. Sometimes she gets her ears, mouth and eyes correct, but usually she just points to her head. She spontaneously plays peek-a-boo, usually with her big sister. She can climb in and out of her stroller by herself, as well as buckle its buckles. Reading is becoming more of an interest, but she still prefers to walk around in circles, eat markers and crayons, or splash at the water table.

Oh, and she can almost climb out of the bathtub. I'm waiting for the day she decides to try it out on her crib.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Dinosaur Play

Originally uploaded by the girls' moma
At the birthday party we attended yesterday, Kate and Padyn enjoyed hanging out with some new prehistoric friends. Apparently, they enjoyed making Lisa kiss them. I'm not sure what that was about.

I love seeing them play together.


Originally uploaded by the girls' moma
Here's another of Katie Girl that the Girls' Moma shot yesterday. I love this one.

Angel Kate

Originally uploaded by the girls' moma
I have been out of town, so I haven't posted for the last several days. But, that doesn't mean that no pictures were taken in that time. Here's one of Kate that Lisa took yesterday.

I know this doesn't make up for missing Photo Friday, but I'll try my hardest...

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

And Today's Lesson Was...


Today, Padyn earned her lollipop. She was hesitant at first, but she eventually got into the pool with Emma (kind, young, tan, smart lifeguard) and swam around with her for the 30 minutes. Afterwards she ran up to me with a big smile on her face and said, "That was fun!"

Now, she still hasn't joined her class, nor done anything that they did. But who knows. Maybe tomorrow that will happen.

And maybe I just need to put her in private lessons.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Slightly Better...

...but not good enough for a lollipop.

Kate had her 15 month check-up this morning and, as usual, Dr. A offered Padyn a sticker or a lollipop for being such an excellent big sister. I told Padyn she could have the lollipop after she STAYED IN THE POOL and LISTENED TO HER SWIM TEACHERS that day. Padyn agreed and off we went to swim lessons.

I was more hopeful today. She put her feet in when the instructors told her, and she reluctantly slid down to sit on the grate on the edge of the pool. I reminded her of the lollipop and I walked over to the parent hang out spot in the shade. I crossed my fingers and Padyn tearfully let her teacher guide her into the water. I was thinking we were all set for a good lesson. But when I looked back 30 seconds later, she was on the pool deck again.

(For those of you who didn't read yesterday's post or know nothing about my child, you need to understand that she LOVES swimming. LOVES it. Can do it all by herself. Jumps in, kicks, glides, floats, swims out to me, back to the steps, to the wall...No fear...)

I strode over and gently reminded her that this behavior would not get her the lollipop. She, of course, flipped out, started crying hysterically, and really didn't want to get back in. I told her to stop crying, she was fine, and to get back in the pool. I walked away leaving it up to the teachers to decide how to handle it. Obviously, I wasn't helping the situation.

So, the next 25 minutes she spent most of the time on the deck again. Two new teachers spent the whole time with her in an attempt to convince her to get back in. Twice the other instructor came over, took her for a float (the first time of which she cried and the second she just looked pissy), and then she went back to sitting on the deck.

No lollipop. Can you picture how that went over? Hysterical fit on the deck, in the dressing room and all the way to the car. She finally calmed down when I told her she deserved two M&M's for doing better than yesterday, but she wasn't going to get them if she was crying.

So, back again tomorrow to try for that lollipop a second time. What else can I do?

Monday, July 09, 2007

A Lesson in Swimming...and Patience

Padyn had her first organized swim lesson today. Not that she really needs swim lessons...she's already swimming by herself underwater, jumping in off the side, holding her breath, and touching the bottom. But I felt like she could use some instruction from someone not related to her; someone she would be more willing to take instruction from.

She has been very excited this past week when we talk about swim lessons. Every night she asked me if she was going to her swim lesson in the morning. We had to count down the days and figure out where in the middle of our normal routine her lessons would fall. Last night when she realized she was going to get to go to swim lessons in the morning she was thrilled.

The excitement continued this morning through breakfast, in the car on the way to the pool, and in the locker room where we put her suit on. Once we hit the pool deck, it disappeared. Completely.

This is a "Water Readiness" class for kids 3-5 years old. They get in without their parents and learn some new skills with the help of their young, tan teachers. I knew I was in trouble when, after introducing themselves, Padyn didn't even want to put her feet in the water while sitting on the edge.

"What?!?!" I screamed to myself. "You couldn't wait to get here! You love the water! Sticking your feet in is child's play! What is wrong with you!"

Oh course, I voiced none of this. Instead, I physically put her in the water, then walked away, leaving her to the young, tan swim teachers. I figured they would have better luck getting her to warm up to them if I was not around. Plus, I used to teach swim lessons. I remembered how much I hated the parent's "help" at getting their child to do what I was asking. It was better if they just went away and left me to it. So, that's what I did.

Well, in about 30 seconds, she was out on the pool deck again, and that's where she remained for the entire 30 minutes lesson. A nice young, tan lifeguard named Emma decided to try her hand at it. And even though Padyn loves girls by the name of Emma, this one could not convince her to get in. Afterwards, I approached Emma and told her, "This is not about the water. This is about the setting. She doesn't like new people and places. She can really swim by herself."

Emma was a kind, smart, young (tan) thing. She said she figured that out and would keep trying to get her in the pool throughout the week. I told her I would continue to sit out of the way and let her do her job, as I once had her job and I remember what it's like.

And Padyn and I had a little chat on the way home. I explained that this class was going to help her learn how to be safe in the water and if she refused to get in then she wouldn't be able to go in our pool either because she didn't learn how to be safe. Probably an idle threat, but what else could I do? Oh, bribery. Yes. We talked about that, too. We decided that when Padyn got in the pool tomorrow and STAYED THERE, she would get a little baggie of M&Ms on the way home. Want to know what she said? "I only have to get in? I don't have to do anything?" Ummm....no.

Seeing my child in a pool, you would never have believed I have to bribe her with M&M's to get her into water. You'd think she'd be giving ME M&M's to let her get in.

We'll see what happens tomorrow. I'm not holding my breath...in or out of the water.

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Self Absorption

Padyn had her second ballet class on Thursday. The parents were not allowed to stay in the classroom, so Kate and I hung out in the shade outside eating a snack and drinking a Diet Coke. (You can probably figure out who had what.)

When the class was over, Padyn looked very happy, but she refused to show or tell me what she did that day. The only information she shared with me (completely unprompted) on the way home was, "I didn't watch my teacher today, Mommy."

Hmmm...how will she learn anything if she keeps grinning at herself in the mirror?

Friday, July 06, 2007

Unconditional Love

Kate has combined an old skill with a new one to make an already adorable baby into "Super Unbelievably Adorable I Just Want to Kiss Her All Over" Baby.

In the car the other day it was just Kate and me, which never ever happens. Kate started blowing kisses to me. Great big "MAWAHHH!" kisses. So, I blew her a kiss back.

Here's the super cute part...

Then she said, "Tant-too." (Thank you in Kate-speak).

This went on for at least a mile. Kate would blow me a kiss, I'd blow one back and she'd say, "Tant-too."

Can she get any cuter?


I've been very lazy this week. I haven't posted since last Saturday, I missed my good friend's birthday (sorry, Jules), and I can't seem to make myself clean up my house. I blame it on the holiday we had in the middle of the week. It was terribly random. No long weekend connected to it...just a Saturday-like day on a Wednesday. It through me for a loop.

But, I haven't been as lazy with my running. Taking advantage of Daddy being home on Wednesday I went for a run around town. Do you know how long I ran for? An HOUR. I'm not sure what the distance was since I went a little ways down a creek side trail and the rest of the time ran in random circles around downtown. I don't think it was a 10 minute mile pace. I'm sure I would have been hurting more cardiovascularly if it was. I did have to stop for 4 minutes to meet Daddy and the girls at the coffee shop and call my friend to see when she was going to be arriving at my house. (She was only a few minutes away and I didn't want her sitting in my driveway. That's not being nice to your friends). But even with the stop taken into account, I still jogged for an hour. I think it was about 5 miles. Yesterday I rested, and I haven't worked out yet today, but I'm hoping to accomplish that tonight when J gets home from work.

An hour. I'm so impressed with myself. Because, really? It wasn't too long ago that 10 minutes killed me.

And, it makes me feel better about my ongoing struggle with laziness.

Photo Friday

Remember how I told you Kate loves shoes? Well, this is what I found this morning when I went in to get her up...
It seems that when I wasn't looking (I admit, I was still in bed, finishing my book and drinking coffee...I'm lazy sometimes like that), Padyn was taking shoes out of my closet and bringing them to Kate. Kate thought this was the greatest thing EVER. She was VERY mad at me when I took them out of her crib and made Padyn put them back in my closet. I'm worried about what this girl will be like in the future. Is there a Shoe Lover's Anonymous? I should sign her up early.

Padyn got into it, too. I can't believe they can both walk around in my high heels. I'm worried about them spraining their ankles.
Oh, and do you notice Padyn's blue skort on under her pink dress? She got herself dressed this morning (again...lazy. In bed, with coffee...). She came in to show me her accomplishment, held up her dress and said, "I put my skirt on, too, in case it's cold outside." Nevermind that it was almost 90 degrees yesterday and we don't have air conditioning. She is one well-prepared girl.