Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Swim Lessons

Maggie needs to learn how to swim. Like me, she's a little afraid of the water and doesn't really enjoy it too much. I hated swim lessons as a kid. She hated them this year. But she was, at least, much more tolerant and willing than I was at her age!

We signed her up for the Turtles class--kids that afraid to put their face in the water. She loved her teacher and all but that cold water and the constant requests to "blow bubbles" in the water drove her a little nuts.

Her first day:

This is how she handled most of the class:

She was a brave girl. Every weekday for two weeks. Some days the water was so cold I could see her entire body shaking uncontrollably and when she'd get out her skin was completely white. Caroline and I would spend each morning sweating to death in the sun waiting for her.

Even after what I could tell was a traumatic 30 min in the water she'd be happy as a clam! She made little to no improvement through the first class so we signed her right back up for a second round. She kept her game face on and bravely got in the pool each day without complaint. Toward the end I started to wonder if I was damaging her emotionally for making her do something she clearly was not enjoying.

After each class I would hold her in a towel in the scalding sun until she stopped shaking then she was allowed to spend a little time playing in the sand (the highlight):
A very thick layer of sunscreen and another layer of dirt on top of that meant we had to do a little washing up. Caroline eating a fresh peach (oh happy summer fruit!) in the sink:

Rather than sign the poor Maggie up for a THIRD time through the Turtles class we've opted for a break in lessons (mostly because I don't want to totally traumatize the poor girl). The rest of the summer will be "practicing" at the pool with friends which is something she does actually enjoy!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Fathers Day 2010

Yes, I'm this far behind in blogging.
We had a peaceful and relaxing Father's Day at home. We bought our Daddy the fanciest steak around (according to Consumer Reports it happened to be Lobels out of New York). Patrick seemed pretty excited about it.

And of course we had his favorite cake.

The shirt was also part of his Father's Day gift:

A couple of things to say about Maggie My and Caroline Pie's Daddy:
1. He has made so many personal and professional sacrifices to make sure he's at home and involved with his girls. It's not even a "decision"--it's a given.
2. He spoils, spoils, spoils.
3. Patience. He can sit and do art projects or just play barbies all day long. He's great at "pretend" games of all kinds. He's also a big-picture guy who see's our life in the long term and doesn't freak about all the small stuff.
4. One PROUD papa!
5. He's the ultimate comforter when there are tears. (Both the kids and mine!)

Monday, July 19, 2010


Patrick finally got us out to Ohio! We flew into Columbus and spent a few days with old friends. It was so nice to put faces (actual people!) with names and stories! Sadly, the only picture I took was of Maggie swimming at the hotel pool:
We then headed to Tennessee to spend a few days with Patrick's family. His sister just bought a beautiful home on Lake Norris and, MAN, did the girls have fun! Getting prepped for a boat ride:

Caroline fell in love with the air on her face. She went into a complete trance every time we were moving. Poor girl though--that life jacket had to have been uncomfortable!

Taking a snooze on the boat while everyone else rode the tube or went swimming:
As silly as it sounds, I was totally nervous for Maggie out there! She was in great hands though and they got "almost up to Grandma speed" according to Uncle TJ.
Pose girls...and they did!
Ruby the dog was loved (a little too much) by Caroline.
And just to prove I was there (taken at a Cracker Barrel restaurant on our way back to Columbus by Maggie the photographer):

This was my first time in this part of the country and I thought it was beautiful. Very green and lush. Tennessee was amazing! The Appalachians are SO pretty. One new thing for me was fire flies! I'd never seen one and they were everywhere at night. I just sat on the deck and STARED!

Maggie could not have been happier the whole trip (even when we had to yank a half burrowed tick our of her neck!). She was allowed to sleep in the same room with her cousins which we thought would last half a night at best. She slept great with the girls every night. That is...when she finally fell asleep. She would talk those poor girls ears off each night! We had a video monitor in the room and we could see her bouncing up and down, talking incessantly, while the cousins were barely responding at all. They were beyond patient and kind to our girls!

Thank you to all the Ohio folks for showing us such a great time.

Sunday, July 18, 2010


Maggie's cousins (the Barrus clan) gave her this sleeping bag and pony pillow. She adores it.

Opening a belated b-day present:

Another b-day present was this huge stuffed unicorn. She.Loves.It.

I started sewing! This was my first project--a little skirt for Maggie. The fact that I was able to produce anything at all from a sewing machine made me extremely happy.

Caroline enjoying some fresh peas from the farmers market:

Maggie sits and pushes herself around in this little stroller. I asked her once why she did it and she responded with, "this is my wheelchair, like Bri-Bri's". I almost burst into tears.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

A Birthday Party

I reluctantly did a small birthday party for Maggie. They are so much work!

The guest list: Addy and Reagan. Here are the girls having a grand time:

Little Mermaid Cake.

The kids played like crazy, ran around in the sprayground, etc. Good times.

Caroline playing in the water:

and eating a bazillion grapes:

and after it all:
Maggie is FOUR!!! Ok, so I still can't get over it.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Maggie's 4th Birthday

Maggie is a four year old. Insane!

We had a quiet birthday at home. Grammy was still in town and we picked up Daddy from a business trip that morning.

We opened some small presents first. She was very pleased with her new Barbie DVDs. (The big sign around her neck was from a church Primary activity that morning and CTR means "choose the right").

The big gift was a big girl bike. Barbie of course. Notice the awesome little bike for her Barbie dolls that hooks to her handle bars.

Taking it for a test run. Barbie helmet as well. Grammy got a kick out of the whole thing.

Later that weekend in the backyard, the family playing:

Grammy watching the craziness.

A few things about Maggie:
She now uses the "I'm a big kid and that's what big kids do" excuse for every naughty thing she does.
Barbie and Barbie DVDs are her favorite thing ever. She sings along with every song while watching the DVDs and acts out the scenes with her dolls.
She says so many hilarious things in a day I can't keep up with recording them all.

She still loves dancing/dance class but asks me often why she doesn't go to school anymore (the concept of summer break seems to be lost on her).
Favorite game is to get her little sister to chase her. This takes a lot of effort on her part and she squeals loudly when she succeeds.

She scolds me each and every time I slip up and say "stupid".

Favorite food is mac and cheese. It's practically all she eats.

Her daddy is still far and away the greatest thing ever! Adore him she does.

My baby girl is, sadly, no longer a baby. Sometimes I look at her and think my heads gonna explode because I love her so much.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Grammy Visits

We had a lovely time with Grammy in Colorado.

Boulder Pearl Street Fun--although I'm not sure watching the kids play in the gravel and toys is exactly Grammy's cup of tea. She's a good sport though.

We had to get Grammy a cupcake....and the rest of us ate more than our share.

Maggie was fortunate enough to have Grammy stay over her b-day weekend. She let Maggie pick a toy of her choice at Target and, not surprisingly, she picked a Little Mermaid barbie.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Summer Days in Cheap Kiddie Pools

This is apparently how Maggie enjoys the kiddie pool. I got it all set up, filled it early so it could warm in the sun, and she....reads in a chair instead.
At least Caroline enjoys it. This pic is just after she had stuck her entire face in the water, trying to drink it.
The next day I convinced Maggie to get IN the water by putting the chair in the pool so she wouldn't get too wet.
The heat really sucked her energy. She hasn't really napped since she was VERY little.

And this is just a cute picture of her painting.