Cousin Amy is in town this weekend; visiting, attending a convention and looking at schools for graduate work. Sadly, one of the programs she's considering is Puke. So we ventured into enemy territory this morning to check it out.
Here's Lily & Shawn, giving it two thumbs down:
Our little tree hugger... She threw her arms around it and announced, "I luff dis tee!"
All kidding aside, it's a beautiful campus, and we had a nice morning wondering around, especially through the gardens. Lily really had fun on this bridge...
"Dis car is kinda like Daddy's!" ~As we walked past a silver car
"What I seed? A waterfall! Like we seed at Gamma Milly's! What I throw in it?" ~As we drove past a water fountain. We did see one outside the hospital where we visited Grandma Milly 2 months ago. And we threw a penny in.
"Mommy puts me to bed every single morning every one." ~At nap time, since Mommy always puts her to bed.
"Daddy does this every single person ever." ~We think this is her way of saying "every single time".
"What I found kinda book dis is?" or "What kinda color dis is?", etc. ~This way, she gets us to ask her questions that she wants to answer!
"I can't tell." or "It's somebody." or "It's sum-fin." ~When she doesn't know the answer.
You and I had what can only be described as a perfect day today. We had breakfast together, and you giggled throughout at the faces I made and the things I said. You thanked me repeatedly for your gummy bears (vitamins), your water, your cheerios and your yogurt. You've stared to parrot back full sentences and funny phrases, so that sometimes you'll say things like "see-rous-see" (seriously) in the middle of a conversation. In the exact same inflection I use. It never fails to crack me up.
After breakfast you picked out your clothes and (mostly) put them on by yourself, and then you picked out my clothes too. You have very specific ideas about what I should wear. You will quite happily hang out in the bathroom with me for as long as it takes me to get ready, as long as you can put on lip gloss and make faces at yourself in the mirror, or try on daddy's underwear and socks. You also love to get up on our bed to "Snuggle wif mommy's blankie".
Our big adventure today was our last Kindermusik class for this year. As we walked across the parking lot, you told me "I love holding your hand Mommy." Baby girl, you melt my heart, and I love holding your hand too!
While you didn't know it was the last class, I sure did. We've spent 30 weeks now with these kids, and their Mommies, and your beloved Miss Ginny, and we will both miss them terribly. You helped me make a card to give to Miss Ginny yesterday, and you were so excited to give it to her when you saw her today. Last week, you ran into the building, straight to Miss Ginny, and gave her a hug and said "I luff you!" But this greeting was sweet too. And then you promptly refused to let me take your picture with her, even though we had been talking about it since last night! Someday you'll be as bummed as I am that we didn't get a good one. But near the end of class, when we were having quiet time and you were supposed to be cuddling with me, you told me "I need to go snuggle wif Miss Ginny" and I got this blurry one:
That's you with your first real teacher, Lily. You have loved this class so much - we both have. You've learned to keep a steady beat, to sing in tune and to dance to the beat (sort of!). You almost never do all of these things in class, and to someone who didn't know you, it might not even look like you enjoy it. But you soak up every second of it... At home, you sing whole songs, with multiple verses. You do specific movements that go with each song. You regularly recite off the names of all of your friends and ask us to sing to them (Jordan is a particular favorite - he's 3 and a half and I think he might be your first crush!) You talk about Miss Ginny and the other kids all the time, and you request "Lily's Songs!!" whenever we're in the car. At home, we listen to "da donkey song" and "shalom" far more often then I'd like to. And each week, on Wednesday morning, when I tell you that we're going to Kindermusik, your whole face lights up and you start to wiggle from the excitement that you can just barely contain. It's been such a joy to watch you this past year and to see all that you've learned, and to watch you get so comfortable in a new environment. It took you awhile to warm up, but it was well worth the wait.
After class, we met up with all the other kids at a park for a picnic, to play on the playground, and (the highlight for you) to feed the ducks. You were so excited, you ran the whole way.
At the end of the video, you say "I love the goose!" There were 2 Canadian Geese wandering around on the dock, hissing at everyone, scaring most of the kids, and begging for bread. And there's our Lily, the animal-lover, arms outstretched, trying to hug them. Sweetheart, I hope that your heart is always overflowing like it is now.
When I told you it was time to leave, you began to cry, and it really seemed like a tantrum was coming (it was naptime). But when I told you we could come back another day, you waved and said "Bye bye pay-gound. See you next week!" Way to make the best of things, Bug!
After your nap, we went to see the "buh-lo-zers" at the construction site behind our house. You were so excited to see "a big daddy one and a baby one and one was mooo-vin!" On the walk back home, we saw a bunny in the grass. You told me he was "snugglin' wif the grass" and whispered "Hi bunny" until he hopped away.
But maybe the best part of all these fun things, besides seeing you have so much fun, was hearing you recount every single bit of it to Daddy when he got home from work. Hearing your excitement, and your memories of all the things we do, is magical.
I'm so glad you had fun today. I know I did. Thank you so much LilyBug, for today and everyday. Mommy loves you!
Mommy here. Back from a long weekend at the spa with my high-school friends, celebrating our 30th birthdays. I had a great trip, and it was so nice to have some grown-up time. This mommy gig is awesome and amazing and the most rewarding job I could ever have. I feel so fortunate to be able to spend my days with my favorite person in the world. Still... it gets frustrating sometimes. And lonely. It was good to have a weekend away, to regain some perspective. And I did, because I can't tell you how much I missed this face:
I missed hearing Sank-you Mommy for the pee-nuh bulluh an' jelly an da water an da gwapes! at lunch time. She's really into making lists of the things she's grateful for, which is so sweet.
And I missed hearing a tiny little voice singsonging I gonna sit on da pot-teeeeeee! and then grinning from ear to ear when she goes.
I even missed hearing No! or No Mommy! or No, I do 'note'! in response to every. single. question. I. ask.
But, most of all, I really, really missed this smile:
I wasn't entirely sure that Lily missed me, despite Shawn's reports. She seemed to have a fabulous time with her Daddy and she was happy, but not overjoyed, to see me again. I, on the other hand, burst into tears at the sight of her! But at bedtime on Sunday, after Shawn read a story and started to sing a song, Lily sat up away from him and said I need my mommy.
Saturday was my big work picnic extravaganza. Lily and I showed up a bit early as we both need substantial prep time for any outdoor day - a good slathering of sunblock on our snow-white complexions. Applying lotion is one of Lily's favorite pastimes. Repeatedly she would tell me "I need mo sun bloke" That's right, bloke... like some dodgy englishman... goofball.
Anyway, we go in and she B-lines for the pony rides. She runs right up to the little fence-thingy and points at the tiny horses. "I ride dees?"
She was tickled to get on the pony. Her giggling was infectious. If you listen carefully as the camera pulls back, she does a very accurate horsey imitation.
She giggled for about 30 seconds after the ponies started walking in their circle and then said "I all done" She sure knows what she wants. We got down and had another round of giggles as she pet a very twitchy nose.
The other big hit was a giant inflatable alligator that you climb through its mouth into it's belly and jump around. The final act is a rather true-to-life exit from the rear-end, a first for each of us. So. Cool. Here's Lily lounging in some squishy stomach contents.
In other firsts, Lily had her first snow cone, rib and chicken leg. Sweet.
I think she was pretty worn out from our big morning, so we had a pretty chill afternoon of reading and puzzles. Did I mention she's very big into the puzzles?
Sunday we had another picnic, at the park near our house. I loaded up Lily and Scout into the bicycle trailer and huffed the mile-or-so. Miss Safety was sure to insist I wear "Daddy's big-big helmet like mine". Yes ma'am. I'll tell you what though, either they are very heavy or I am old and out of shape. I could hear the play-by-play behind me as we slowly climbed a hill... "Daddy's very very tired."
After sandwiches and grapes, about a hundred rides down the slide and a little game of fetch with Scout, we headed home. It got quiet about halfway home and I called back to see how everyone was doing. I got this response: "No Daddy, no talk to me an' Sout while we in da twailer". I'm in trouble.
The final chapter was the return of Mommy. I didn't mention this, but Lily was asking about her the whole weekend. "Where's, my Mommy?" I'd tell her she was in Chicago to which she would reply, "She's in Boston." I don't think she was convinced, but she sure was glad to see her. I could tell when she caught sight of Kelly outside the terminal. She just started giggling again. Welcome home Mommy.
Lily, I know that we get to spend precious little time alone together, but I have so much fun with you. I tell everyone that I've got the most entertaining little person I could imagine. You are so sweet and funny and smart and when you look up at me when I'm singing you to sleep you melt my heart. Thank you so much for coming into our lives. I love you munchkin.
So this weekend is the first full daddy-daughter long weekend. Can you say Big Fun? More about that in a second, first an important exchange.
We were sitting, eating a perfectly un-mind altering dinner when Lily pointed at me and said "This not daddy."
I respond, a bit confused, "What's not daddy's, my shirt?" (possessives are still hit-or-miss)
Lily, still pointing: "This neck, this face, this eyes, this hair."
I'll pause (think pop-up video), it's Saturday evening and I haven't shaved since Thursday morning. So I finally have a 5 o'clock shadow. This is a pretty unusual occurence (note the first sentence in the post), so to my little acutely-observant girl, I'm sure I look a bit unfamiliar.
Back to the story. Me: "I don't look like daddy?"
Lily: "Uh huh"
Me: "What do I look like?"
Lily: "Look like Bumpa"
That's it. I never determined why or in what way I look like Bumpa (Grandpa Bill, Kelly's father, not even my own). My guess is that stubble is something she sees on his face more often than mine. Other than getting Bill to shave a bit more often, I don't know how to resolve this issue. Thoughts?
And now, our big weekend! I took Friday off as Kelly had a morning flight to visit some friends. We all loaded up in the car and took Kelly to the airport. I'm sure we looked a little funny as pulled up to arrivals towing an empty trailer. You see, we are laying some sod and the big plan for the morning was to take Lily to the farmer's market. Even more fun was the slow ride home, completely loaded with grass. Lily had two things to say on the ride home. Repeatedly. One: "There's gas in da front seat" ... "That's right Lily, we ran out of room in the trailer and the trunk" (major vacuuming followed) . Two: "Dat was da trailer!" in response to the frequent and loud grinding sound of the heavily-loaded hitch scraping the ground. I'm sorry to have started the weekend off so lame, little one.
It did improve. Friday was full of big fun with a puzzlethon, jig lessons (thanks to Brian for the traditional Irish music), Lots and Lots of time outside... particularly notable was the trek through our woods in her wagon (4-wheel drive is totally over-rated) and a most fascinating worm found in the grass. Then of course, there was also this as we were getting ready for dinner:
Lily, you are so much fun to hang with. Thank you.
Coming soon: The much anticipated second part of the huge weekend with daddy... will Lily and Daddy be able to top running around the house with wings out-stretched? Stay tuned.