Thursday, June 30, 2011

Father's Day

A running bear hug for Daddy

Emily and Jeremy: Father's Day 2011

Three generations: Don, Jeremy, and Emily
Enjoying our day at Huber's

Feeding the ducks

Emily sits still for about 10 sec so we could take a photo with grandparents!

I think it is safe to say that Jeremy loves being Emily's daddy! We're talking about a guy that will tear up on occasion if work keeps him away from seeing his sweet girl. Emily loves wrestling with Daddy and climbing all over him. She especially likes when he pokes his head around the corner and all you see is his head. Then he pretends to be flying or going down stairs, or climbing a wall. It is really hilarious and Emily and I are a captive audience. It has been fun to watch Jeremy become more in love with Emily. The baby stage was sweet, but now that she is talking, walking, climbing, and giggling, I think we have even more fun.

This year we spent Father's Day weekend locally. We went to church in the morning and headed to Huber's with Grancy and Poppy in the evening. It was a great idea! We bought lots of fresh produce at the local store, bought wine for a night on the screened in porch, and enjoyed a wonderful homemade meal (best fried chicken I have ever had!) The weather that evening was divine--warm and not humid with a gentle breeze that kept us comfortable and happy. Emily fed the ducks and fish. She ran all around the playground and grassy areas by the restaurant. We enjoyed our evening and our special time with family. I have so much love for my father and my husband. I have been blessed that God has given me two such wonderful, special men. Happy Father's Day!

Hunter's 2nd Birthday

Little nephew Hunter turned two on June 17th! I love watching him grow and I am very thankful that my siblings and I have children that are all about the same age. It is so fun when we all get together! Here's a few photos from Nan and Pop's house who hosted the party this year. The kiddos had lots of fun running around in the country, petting Mollie the golden retriever, playing on the swing set, swimming and of course eating birthday cake and ice cream. Emily and Hunter are both REALLY into Elmo right now. So, it was just as much a treat for her as it was Hunter, except he got all the presents! We will have our party in a few weeks and it is hard to believe how fast two years go by! Happy Birthday, Hunter!

Will and Laura with the birthday boy!

The dads and the babies enjoyed some fun pool time!

Love his big truck! And he got a trike, too!

Happy Birthday to you...

Play Time

Emily enjoyed swinging with her cousins!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Emily 22 months

Well, we are so close to 2 yrs that I have stopped asking Emily to tell me she is "one." We are now working on saying, "I'm 2" and showing the right number of fingers. Gotta practice for the birthday party! By the way, holding up two fingers requires a lot of manual dexterity that I don't think we are going to master in 2 more months. However, she can pretty much tell people on cue that she is two, so I'm happy with that.

Emily is FULL of personality. She cracks us up every day. I think I say that every age is my favorite, but there is really something special about when your baby is learning to talk. Lately, she loves to talk on the telephone. She has a little "Elmo" cell phone that she carries on quite a conversation with in her carseat, but she doesn't need a cell phone to talk. Nope, she can jabber all day in the back seat to herself or me or the birds or whomever. Her jabbering is probably 10-20% actual words and 80-90% filler. Here are a few of Emily's latest and greatest:

1) Naming people: We've had "Mommy and Daddy" down for months so we've moved on to other family members. No offense if your name isn't mentioned, I'm just writing what she says most often. "Nan and Pop" is heard daily since we got back from vacation usually accompanied by whining to go see them, "Nan and Pop house." She loves her babysitter and her children. Amanda is "minnie", Jordan is "Jorney", Nathan is "Nana" (pronounced nay, nay), and Greta is "geta." When she sees them she gets so excited, waves to them, and cries if we don't stop by their house when we see them. (They are our neighbors). She is having a hard time saying "Grancy" so Grancy has become "Dinkney." She can easily say "Poppy", but sometimes shortens it to "pop" and I am trying to remind her to say "Poppy" instead. She gets so excited to see them and runs to them as soon as she eyes them. As far as other family members, she knows "lala", "Stephen", "Coopney", Hootney", and "Jenny". She calls Elizabeth "baby."

2) Making silly faces. Emily has a hilarious "surprise, silly face" that she makes when she does something new or likes something a lot. She also can do a "sad" face on cue (when she is in the mood) and it includes the best pouty lip you've ever seen. She also says, "cheese" a lot when we ask her for a happy face or ask her to smile.

3) Conquering the playground: Emily has gotten really good at climbing on playground equipment, including ladder type steps and sliding down slides without having to be coaxed or encouraged. This week she also let me push her in a swing at the playground. She has always tolerated the baby swings with the full back and harness strapping, but she never liked the baby swings at the parks that were more open. She finally let me push her pretty good in one of those type swings without doing the "scared face." I know some children like swinging much earlier than that, but every time we would try, she was SO scared and cried and cried so we didn't push it. I can see a difference in how high Will can toss up Hunter and what Emily will allow Jeremy to do without looking like she is scared to death! Maybe this is a girl/boy difference?

4) More sentences. "I wanna see that." "Emmy go poopoo." "I swinging." "I swimming, running, driving, etc." "I want milk." (pronounced like "melk" spoken with a long, slow, Southern drawl." Gosh, she talks so much that I may have to edit this post later and think of some more fave phrases.

5) Prefers Mama--A LOT! Emily has a laughing love affair with Daddy. No one can make her giggle as much as he can. However, she really prefers her Mama to get her in the mornings and to put her to bed--so much that she will tell her daddy, "no." I hope it doesn't hurt Jer's feelings too bad. We both take turns doing bath, story time, etc. and most nights we are both in her room for story time, but if she knows I am in the house, she will cry for me to put her to bed instead of Jeremy. I think that having a strong maternal attachment is a good thing and I know that if I'm not at home, Jeremy and Emily are fine and can handle it.

6) Becoming more picky about food. Overall, I'm pretty pleased with Emily's variety of food for a little 22 mon. old. However, she is becoming more picky as she develops food preferences. She definitely prefers fruit and cheese to almost anything else. She still won't touch meat of any kind unless it is really small and she doesn't notice the different texture.

7) Pretend Play. Emily is really a good mother to her baby doll now. She gives her a bottle, a paci, pushes her in a stroller in the back yard, wraps her in a cover and sleeps with her every night. Sometimes we read with Emily sitting in my lap and the baby doll in Emily's lap and the book in front of baby. I guess we need to name baby doll since she has become part of the family, but Emily doesn't really call her anything and I just tell her to get her baby. So creative! However, she also loves to push around cars. I feel bad that she doesn't have very many because she obviously loves them. I think her boy cousins need to hook her up with a cool truck for her birthday!

Can't believe she is almost two!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Destin, Florida: May 28-June 4, 2011

It has been a month since my last post and it is now summertime in KY! We were still having occasional cool and rainy days before we left for Florida on Memorial Day weekend, but ever since we have returned, life has been full of my favorite summer activities! There is so much to say. So much has happened in the last month. Emily continues to grow and change and learn new words (AND sentences!) every day. I love her so much. I could just eat her up!

The week leading up to vacation was pure craziness. Jeremy had loads of work on his plate, I was busy, too, and also having to do all of the clothes washing, shopping trips, and packing for Emily, myself and some for Jeremy. Getting organized, planning for a long car trip with a toddler, and trying not to forget anything too important was about to drive me crazy! We left for Bowling Green late Friday night and left for Destin, Florida, Saturday morning at about 8:40 am. I believe it took us close to 11-12 hrs. from L-ville to Destin, but I kept getting confused about central or eastern time and so who really knows? It was all day and a long trip to say the least. But, it was so worth it as my photos will show!

The last time we took a Lee family vacation was about 7 yrs. ago. Jeremy and I were dating, but we weren't engaged or married yet. Stephen and Becca probably didn't know each other yet, Laura and Will were married, but of course none of us had kiddos. This vacation was quite diffierent, but full of joy and fun with having 3 toddlers to keep us smiling. Luckily, mom found a large home for us to rent for the week: 4 bedrooms and 4 bathrooms, 2 kitchens, 3 balconies, a patio, garage, game room, and a dining room large enough where all of us could sit together. The home was large enough for each of us to escape somewhere for some alone family time, but not so large that we didn't have plenty of opportunities to be together. It was about a 5 min. walk from the beach. You could see the ocean from the 3rd floor balcony.

I have hundreds of photos not to mention all of the photos I still haven't received from Mom, Laura, and Stephen. Looking back at our photos, I realize we didn't take many photos of the house or of everyone together. Most of mine are of Emily (big surprise there!) Mom hired a photographer to take photos of the whole family on the beach, but I don't have them, yet. We are hoping he will send us the unedited photos since for some reason he thought it was cool to edit them VERY old school. Anyway, it would have been near impossible to snag a good photo by ourselves with a tripod with 8 adults and 3 toddlers!

Our Home Away from Home: Miramar Beach

Emily laughing as I chase her. Love the setting sun on her sweet, happy face!

Quick shot of Emily and me before the photography session

I included this photo because it almost captures her "silly" look that she does quite frequently, but I can never manage to get a photo!

Cooper at almost 14 months reminds me of Emily last year at the beach. No fear!
Cooling down in a wagon full of salt water? No problem.

Cooper finally made it to the beach after a few days of feeling rough.
(upper respiratory infection and ear infection)

The Burnham family enjoying the breezes at the Backporch restaurant

I would have sat Emily in the chair, but it had just come a quick shower.

Jeremy and Emily after dinner one evening

Chillin' in the shade with Daddy.

Taking advantage of a calm ocean day to let Cooper float on the wake board.

Emily and Hunter loved these pint sized chairs on the 3rd floor balcony. One day Mom found a water hose, and a new water game was born. Emily and Hunter pushed these chairs all over the place and sometimes fought one another for them. In this photo, Mom was having them sing silly songs with her and we enjoyed watching them do the hand motions.

Emily's preferred set up: sitting on a wake board with several toys within reach and at least one bucket full of water.

Nan's little granddaughter!

Emily finally "braved" walking through the soft sand when we asked her to go see Pop and have him full up her water pail.

Wish I looked that cute in a bathing suit!

Hunter enjoyed the pool more than the beach. His favorite pool game was jumping into Will's arms from the side or "pushing" his Dad or uncles into the pool so they would make a big splash!

Memorial Day: waiting patiently for the homemade ice cream!

Yum, yum! Emmy loves strawberry icecream. I must have 20 photos of her walking back and forth to get one more bite!

Fun Beach Day!

Emily needed lots of love and encouragement on her first day or two at the beach, but she adjusted quickly and loved it by the end of day two. I will never forget how she took tiny, tentative baby steps in the sand and then reached forward as far as her little arms would let her to get a favorite toy. She was trying her hardest not to walk more than necessary in the dreaded sand!

Needing Daddy's shoulder for a minute...

"Brave" Emmy finally getting the hang of walking in the sand.

Hanging Ten! That's my girl!

Happy Girl!

Pointing to the ocean or "wah-ney" in Emily-speak. Water = wa +ney.

You missed a spot, Hunter. Let me get that...

Almost jumping to Daddy!

She really loved her float this year. We pushed her back and forth between us, twirled her in circles, or just let her lay her head down on it. It is nice that she will stay in it and not demand that we hold her the whole time.