Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Fathers Day

Fathers Day was a HUGE deal to Abigail - this is about her favourite being in the world after all. It started with a party at school on Friday. Abby insisted she wear a dress because "there's gonna be a party mum". Duh mum! The teachers told me she didn't stop asking "when are the dads coming?" all day:


And, then for her gift on Sunday, she helped me prepare a special breakfast:

Good cook isn't she? This strata has eggs, sausage, bread, spinach & mushrooms.


We ate, stayed home all day watching kids TV, and the pair of them napped together. Jake said he couldn't have asked for a better Fathers Day. I love the both of them.


Girls Just Wanna Have Fun

One of the best things about having a girl is dressing her in pretty embroidered dresses sent from England. I've known since Abby was born that there is only a limited amount of time that I, as the mum, dictates what she'll wear - in just a few short months I'm sure I'll have no say. So, while I do:



And no beautiful English dress would be complete without a McDonalds Happy Meal Shrek watch. Did you get a picture of it Dad?
Dad, Dad, really, did you get the Shrek watch in the picture?!

2nd Trimester

So, the 2nd Trimester has brought some fun changes to our house. Mostly because my energy & appetite are back. I may also be 'nesting' as the term says - wanting to start moving Abigail to her new room so I can set up the nursery with fun baby things despite having, oh say, nearly six months, till said baby is due, ha ha.

So, here we are, Abby taking over the last of our guest room with strawberry paint:



And me back to cooking again! How does lemon & leek stuffed Cornish hen sound to you? I really should have taken the picture AFTER cooking, not before!


Don't think we eat 'gourmet' all the time. Pregnancy has involved more than my usual fair share of McDonalds. Abby doesn't mind:


Enough About Abigail ...

... and a little about mini-Madonna #2.

I had my 16wk appointment today, apparently baby is about this big:


Baby also threw us for a loop by lowering that high 'girls' heartbeat to a low 'boys' one (I know, silly old wives tale but it's fun to guess).

We (me) are simply bursting to find out what we're having this time - the excitement of that is even bigger than the first time for me. I am itching to picture our family, as well as itching to know whether the 9000 boxes of beautiful girls clothes in the garage can be used again or not. I am very grateful that we had a lot of gender-neutral white, cream, yellow & green when Abby was born but who am I kidding? There's still an awful lot of pink & lavender in there too that I can't see putting a boy in. So, who knows? Will I be shopping in the blue section this fall? That'd be fun (although more expensive than another girl). We'll see. Stay tuned.

School Report


At age three, Abby's School Report reads something like this:


Abigail has changed the most in the almost-year we've had her in our classroom. She is now very independent, and one of our social butterflies. She is not shy with her feelings but does still need to work on talking to her teachers instead of instantly crying when something upsets her.


Abigail meets all the cognitive, language and gross motor skills expected of her age group. (There were a couple of tests to show number/letter/shape recognition from Feb to now and her growth was huge). Loves to colour & has started drawing recognisable shapes. Pretends to read & write (taking menu orders).


She loves imaginitive play, especially doctor & dentist, as well as baby dolls. She uses blocks as microphones & pans as guitars - always turning to music & dancing before all else if given the choice.


Abigail is our chatterbox - she carries on conversations with friends & teachers. We sometimes have to ask her to calm down so that other children, those more shy, can also have a chance to answer the teacher's question.
We will be sad to say goodbye to this particular group as they move up to the Preschool room in August. Abigail is excited & more than ready for this move.

First Artwork

I'm sooo proud of this. A few weeks ago, Abby came home from school with her first ever artwork that resembles something:


Isn't it great? I love that our legs come straight out of our head, and then our arms out of our legs. It's just beautiful.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Just More Photos of Our Growing Girl

Despite my best intentions to keep exceptionally 'girly' stuff out of our house, we have started playing Princess, or Bride, a LOT. At least twice a week Jake or I have to go through a little ceremony 'marrying' Abigail. Jake is the officiant, and babbles some words about promising to love her as her mummy forever & her loving me forever, and then we are declared married & we kiss & I have to follow her about for the next half-hour being told what to do.

Running the hallway:


And just to give you a recent conversation:
Abigail in loud excited voice: "mum, when I grow, I'm going to be SO SO BIG, SO BIG like my dad. He is THIS TALL - he is SO BIG, that's how big I'm going to be!"
*silence for a minute*
Abigail in quiet sad voice: "sigh, but not like you mum, because you're only medium"

Brixton Beach

I just finished this book. Again, not something I picked, just something my mother gave to me one day at the pool after she finished with it. It's funny that I read this one right after Memoirs of a Geisha because this book had everything that I was trying to explain was missing in that one a few posts ago. The characters were so deeply grown (for lack of a better word) that by the end they felt like your own family & you were joyous/heartbroken/whatever right along with Alice. Such a great job of communicating both visual beauty and social story. I loved it, this one will haunt me for a while.

Grandma's Visit

After saying goodbye to my parents for the summer, it was nice to have the other grandparent here a few days later :) Grandma came for Memorial Day weekend. We had a nice time shopping, cooking, swimming, eating out & playing at home. We also went to Angelina's 5th birthday party where the theme was Batman & all the kids wore capes:


Abby wore it the whole rest of the weekend, it's especially fetching with pajamas:

And, no pictures of Grandma & I but some typically goofy ones of Abigail & her dad:





May

So, I'm almost caught up to real-time here.

In May, we had Mothers Day - instead of our tradition of Old Town Park & ice-cream, I lay on the couch & recuperated from Las Vegas.

A few days later Abigail had her first dentist appt. I thought maybe they'd just count the teeth & talk to her about brushing twice a day but it was a full-on tools-scraping-plaque and suction-thingys & electric-teeth-cleaning appt! I couldn't believe how well she did. She is really trusting & told the dentist "I'm going to tell my dad I had fun at the dentist". She gets excited about anything & everything I take her to do after school (grocery shopping, library, swimming, errands, chores, the doctor, the dentist). It is really amazing how she doesn't seem like the same girl to last year. So brave! Sending her home with a sticker & a new toothbrush goes really far with a three year old too.

A few days after that my parents flew home for their summer. Abby doesn't yet understand that she goes from seeing them all the time to suddenly saying goodbye & not seeing them for five months. I suppose that's a good thing. She just waves them off like it's a normal afternoon. I, on the other hand, cry like they're leaving for years. Stupid! I'll blame pregnancy hormones or something?!

Speaking of pregnancy, I ended May with my next doctors appointment. All is going well. Baby's heartrate was 166bpm - which if you believe in old wives tales, means we are having another girl. We'll see in July when we have that confirmed either way!

Friday, June 4, 2010

Las Vegas

Hmm? How to describe this trip?! It started out five girls, ready & excited to celebrate our friend Heather's 30th birthday without our kids:


Being her birthday, Heather was unwillingly forced to belly-dance at the Moroccan restaurant we ate at:



And, this is all I have to post for pictures. Because that delicious Moroccan meal caused chaos for me for the rest of the trip. Apparently, a girl with morning sickness who hasn't attempted anything but bread & cheese for a month has a hard time with a 5-course rich Moroccan menu. Next day, I was throwing up for NINE hours, to the point where my OB told me that the girls would have to drive me to a Las Vegas ER if I couldn't keep any fluids down. Lovely. Can you imagine a Las Vegas ER?! I'm picturing drunks, druggies & prostitutes, not pregnant women from England. And not what the girls had in mind for their Las Vegas weekend.
So I spent 48hrs in the hotel room, allowed to take some medication or other (even finding that was a challenge - the OB told me to 'just find a Walgreens' which in any other city is not a problem but Las Vegas is not a normal city!), and I waited for our flight home.
Happy 30th Birthday Heather and Viva Las Vegas :)

Natalie's Visit

Aunty Natalie booked a last-minute trip to come spend a week here (she booked it the night before - if you know Aunty Natalie, you know this is completely her style :). Sadly, I had to miss two nights of her stay for a Vegas trip already planned, but the other days were spent by the pool and a lot of time with her niece, who she thought was hilarious. She was surprised how grown up and out-of-her-shell Abigail has become.
Again, I did a terrible job with ZERO photos, but she got a nice one of Jake & I and that never happens:

Mini-Madonna #TWO!

At the end of April, we had our first doctors appointment for Mini-Madonna #2. Here's our first glimpse. He/she looks like a blob that Grandma affectionately named Cookie Monster:
Abby came with us to the appt & surprised us with how excited she is:


As soon as we got back from the appt, I posted her picture on my Blog, and on Facebook & it was all officially announced to the world! Abby especially liked wearing her new shirt to school that day because she got a lot of excitement & attention all day from her teachers.

Courtney & Veronica's Visit

April 8th -11th my two girlfriends from UCSB came to stay. We had a great girls time catching up & going out to eat in one of Scottsdale's new Fox restaurants: The Culinary Dropout, if anyone's interested, it was a nice place: http://www.foxrc.com/culinary_dropout.html.

It was also my first time meeting 'Baby Max' as Abby calls him, although not such a baby anymore. I'm embarrassed to say these are my only decent photos from the whole weekend:




Let's not leave it so long next time ladies - and Marie, you need to make it so it's the 4 of us again!

Jake's Birthday

A few days after Easter, we celebrated Jake's birthday. He treated himself to a snowboarding trip with Bryan to Mammoth, CA:



My mum & dad also had to unexpectedly fly home this week because my grandmother passed away. The volcanic ash in the skies from the Icelandic volcano (not even going to try & pronounce Eyjafjallajokull) meant they almost missed the funeral but they made it just in time.

Easter in California

The weekend following Abigail's birthday party, we headed to Ojai for the Easter weekend. We stopped at Jake's Aunt Frances & Uncle Bill's for lunch because it's about halfway near Palm Springs. Thank you again for lunch Aunt Frances, I know you're reading :)


Our Ojai visits always include the playground with cousin Morgan & Grandma:


And sometimes the new candy shop in town:

The girls' favourite part is hunting for Easter Eggs in Grandma Carmen's backyard:





The Madonna Family:


The Holland Family: