Tuesday, January 18, 2011

MJ & Lil G: November

I will need to change the monthly postings from featuring only Madeleine's tidings, because, as everybody knows, Madeleine welcomed her little sister Gracen November this month. Here is another quick review of a very packed month!
Madeleine turned 17 months on the 2nd- here is her monthly shot. I told her to smile and this is the face I got:
Ha ha! We then tried it again:
Madeleine started to explore putting words together, it was during a little playtime outside that she started saying "Go, bah-bah. Go!" The video is adorable, but I can't figure out how to load them into blogger. Anyways, as she was riding her little car we got from Grand-aunt Caryn, she was telling herself to go. Kids are so cute.
I really have to give Tim another round of kudos. After pretty much forgetting about taking pictures in the meadow, Tim loaded us all up in the car and we were able to get some. The weather had been spotty, but once the sun came out, we were able to nab some silohouettes.
Tim does a camera check by tossing Hop in the air. I love Madeleine's expressive hands and Hops' perfect side-shot.
Next, he tosses Madeleine. This is actually one of the last toss shots. Not only was she screaming in delight, but he gave a final big toss while I snapped pictures. Throwing a 27 lb baby is not easy, but she loved it, and we got a fun shot. Please don't report us to CPS, we are very safe with our babies =)
Tim found an old box out in the meadow and we used it to get better positioning in the fading sunlight.
Madeleine and I chat and play while Tim snaps away:
If you are clever, you'll notice this picture was taken before the previous ones, notice where the sun is behind me. I love this one of me and my girls.
40 weeks & 1 day:
Madeleine was again treated to a Daddy-Daughter date at the WAP. I am pretty sure it was this trip that allowed me to stay home all day and read and nap. I was "overdue" and ready to deliver, so Tim -having taken time off for Grace- blessed me by taking Mads all day and I almost finished my book club read, I Love Yous are for White People by Lac Su.
Here our brave little girl practically gives the deer her hand as a treat:
deer delight!:
I love this deer's tender sniff:

On November 11, our 3 year anniversary, we were scheduled to take a non-stress test at the Kaiser in San Marcos- to make sure baby was alright. Of course, I was resistant, but Tim tried to make it fun and organized a dinner with the Kalberg's (who were due two weeks after us) and we took in the sunset from a hill in San Elijo:
Happiest 3 years my love:
That night we ate with our friends and looked forward to having our little girl. We didn't know it, but she would come only two days later. You can read about Gracen's birth here.
After Gracen was born, Madeleine continued to explore lots of fun and new items in our house.
She found my headlamp:

was given bubble bath by her Dada:

and enjoyed wearing my Hello Kitty beanie:
Gracen had some visitors including her Great-Grammy, Grand Aunt Sally, Grand Uncle Chris and cousin Katie. Gracen is my Grammy's fourth great-grandchild.
What would my cousin be to Gracen? Her second cousin? Her cousin, once-removed?
Madeleine likes her little sister. She doesn't adore her, but she does ask about her, is concerned when she's crying and likes to show her toys and things. She calls her "bah-bah Dace" for baby Grace.
A few days after Gracen was born, we took our dogs out for a run at "the ranch". We now frequent the abandoned Roripaugh Ranch development by the Temecula Blueberry Farm because of the frequent coyote sightings we've had at "the meadow". Tim took his camera to snap some sunset shots again. Here Madeleine gives him her "goofy-face". We tell her to give us her goofy-face to get a smile. However, after getting a play camera from her Grammi and Papa for Christmas, she is understanding the concept of "cheese".
Gracen sleeps while we take a walk on the ranch:
M & M:
Tim & his girls- the adoration is mutual. This is the photo my brother-in-love, Keith, gave me as a Christmas gift. It looks wonderful in the frame he made for me:
Gracen gets her first bath at home. She liked it :)
My youngest brother, Alex, pays a visit to meet Gracen. He loves our girls very much.
"two, two"
After settling a new baby in, it was time to celebrate Thanksgiving and my birthday, which just so happened to fall on the holiday. Dinner at my parents was wonderful and they invited Tim's sisters too. My in-laws were in Texas visiting Tim's father's parents. My girlfriends Meredith and Elizabeth stopped in to meet Gracen and say Happy Birthday. Meredith just had a baby about a month before me, so here we are nursing our little girls:
Katie & my mom
My mom's sister, Sally and her husband Chris:
Kim & Lori's kids (some of them)
After all the celebrating (our family has 7 birthdays in November & our anniversary is in there too-plus Thanksgiving) we settled into the coming on of December. Good thing Tim had an entire month off to help with our new little one. He is such a blessing when it comes to the girls. I love that he values being around them, especially while we are adjusting to each new one. I love the fact that he gets to grow his beard out. I get sad the day before he goes back to work and has to shave it all off. Oh well, a small price to pay for a wonderful job.
Thank you Tim, for being a supportive husband who protects and adores his girls.
♥ Love, Lauren

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Madeleine's sixteenth month: October

During October, Madeleine turned up a whole level of absolute cuteness. She was more interested in pretend play, being watched as she acted cute, and generally testing out how endearing she could make herself. She learned about herself as she was exploring the fluid concept of "self". She would look in the mirror at new outfits, bows, pigtails and gained a new sense of personal appearance.
She had Nani tie a towel around her quite a few times and ran around the house enjoying the toga:
On a whim, I put a pair of shorts on her head, and she was delighted!
Another day, I was looking for a piece of jewelry and she went to town be-dazzling herself with rings on her toes and watches on her legs. She even asked me to put a few pigtails in her hair. She still continues to put her bracelets and necklaces on herself, I don't make her do it, she just likes wearing trendy bendy bracelets and bows and the like. I love that she looks like some anime puck princess in this photo:
Of course, as a mother, who loves cute clothes on little girls, I can't say I don't encourage her at all, and when she's all dolled up, I can't help but enjoy it too.
The weather in October went from sunny days to rainy days to sunny days again, and I think on one particular cold night we had a fire. Again, Madeleine is gaining that sense of pretend by making her animals kiss each other and hop up and down and more animal appropriate actions. This will translate into mothering her babies into December (but that is another post!).
During this month, Madeleine and Tim took their first trip to the WAP (Wild Animal Park- and you better enjoy it before it becomes the San Diego Zoo Safari Park).
Here is the obligatory sign picture that Tim created as a tradition for our family.
I wasn't there, but I am sure he is asking her where the animal is that made the egg in which she is sitting. This is her gesture whenever we ask her when something is, or she has put an object down and we ask her to retrieve it.
She loves ducks, and I know she had a wonderful time with her Dada on their rainy day trip to the WAP.
The next day, we needed to all get out of the house for a little bit. We went to the park around the corner from our house. Of course, she is growing so quickly that I am trying to get her into her cuper cute clothes that I bought on clearance last year when she was just 6 months old. Here she is being playfully cute in a faux-fur lined half sweater from Gymboree. She is adorable!

Once the sun came out, Tim took Mads to the park. He was so helpful in allowing me some downtime during the last month of the pregnancy. I was very tired and he would take Mads out on a daddy-daughter date to help me out. Here he snapped an awesome shot of her reading Poky Little Puppy's First Christmas and gesturing to the park in anticipation.
Once at the park, she was a good little monkey, and always very curious ♥
Near the end of October, we celebrated Grammi Cindy's birthday at the Trask home.
Grammi loves having all her grandkids, plus a niece and nephew hanging out on her lap.
Another trip to the WAP with Dada where Madeleine loved feeding the deer. In this picture you can make out that she is mimicking the deer licking. Her tongue is out- so cute!
Thank the Lord for gentle deer. Here Madeleine is trying to snuggle one.

IN late October, we went to Bates Nut Farm with the Fish family. I had never been, that I could remember, and was shocked to see a packed parking lot and hundreds of people there to pick their pumpkin. We enjoyed all the amenities of the large farm including a hay ride, bounce house and a huge pumpkin patch of gourd-geous pumpkins (i couldn't resist!)

Here MJ lets us know that it's cold outside at the patch:
sweet little pumpkin-head princess:
She was gleeful in feeding the goats. She fearlessly allowed them to eat toasted Os out of her hand.
Paisley & Madeleine share a flower and a sweet moment:
I look like I swallowed a pumpkin; thankfully these large gourds made for a good seat for a tired Mama (38 weeks):
beautiful girl:

Lainey loved Madeleine's pigtails and just kept touching her head. She wanted to hug and fawn all over Mads. Since Madeleine was an only child, she didn't really know how to respond immediately. It was only a few hugs later that she was smiling and conceptualized the idea that just because adults honor her personal bubble, doesn't mean other kids will do the same. Lainey's love was very tender and fun to watch; Madeleine learned quickly to appreciate the affection.
the lovely Fish family:

We bought our own pumpkins at Winco and carved two. Tim, who had never carved a pumpkin before, did one and I did the other. Madeleine helped now and then.
Tim worked Halloween, so my parents came over to help me out. My dad passed out candy and my mom went with me and Madeleine trick-or-treating. Madeleine was a pink cat this year. This was the first time in many years that I did not dress up, but I couldn't really pull a costume together that would acomodate a 39 week belly.

The hot weather returned and a week after we carved our pumpkins, they were shriveled heaps from the sun.

That was our fun and busy October!
Love, Lauren