|With our matching bracelets from Prague!|
She started back to daycare full time and when we both arrived to pick her up at 3pm, she was running around with a wide-brimmed hat on. When she saw me, she switched direction and came running toward me, arms outstretched with an "Ahhhhhhh!" But just as soon as she ran to me, she was off and going in a different direction, thoroughly enjoying herself and having divertito. She did cry briefly at drop off all week, but also cried when I picked her up and asked her to say bye to her friends before we left. Her first full week back was "western week" and they brought in a pony! She enjoyed watching from afar, but did not want to get on.
The next day, they had a balloon artist and she seemed quite proud to show me her balloon rose when I picked her up.
One thing I love about her daycare being right across the street is that if I have to work late, I can go get her! On the Friday before the first day of school, I had to work until 6:30pm. But, I picked her up at 2:30 and she was with me the whole time.
Grandpa and Uncle Glen came out again for a visit from Yucaipa and we went to Pretend City. The last time she was there was a few days after her birthday so she wasn't walking, just scooting. Now, she was able to run off when she saw something interesting to her. We went a bit later than expected, and it was crowded around their water/fishing table with hardly any room for her to fit. But I was surprised to see her wiggle right in between bigger kids and find a fish. This was the first time that she started leading Uncle Glen around by his finger, and she hugged and kissed both of them before they left.
If you don't know already, I have a bit of a craigslist addiction to Little Tikes yard toys. That weekend, I was able to find an 8 foot x 8 foot jumper for her, and sold her small slide/swing for the same price I purchased it for when she was 6 months old.
I visited her twice during my lunch on her first week back to daycare. While it was so comforting and reassuring to be able to observe her happily playing outside when she didn't know I was there, she did cry after I left. The last thing I want to do is make it hard on her, and hard on them so I resolved to not visit for the rest of the month.
We woke up early on the second Saturday of the month and met my friend Stella and her two girls at Pretend City. It was so fun to watch baby A just charge off in a direction when she saw something interesting. After nap-time, Grandpa and Uncle Glen came for another visit. She is starting to really know them, and will take their hand and lead them toward something she wants, like the drinking fountain button pushed. My Dad is very busy with school full time and also radiation treatments for several hours every day. The fact that he makes the 3+ hour drive (round trip) to see her means a lot to me. He very much wants to be a part of her life and growing up. On our way to the park he said that "Grandpa visits are good, but they don't compare to Grandma visits." He quickly apologized for bringing Mom up, but there was no need, as this is something on my mind all the time. Mom would have adored her.
Sunday found us up and out of the house early again, while Daddy slept. He does stay up later than me, and one of the things he always does that I really appreciate is all of the dishes and bottle prep, which these days is just 5 ounces of water, and a bottle for after breakfast. In return, we let him sleep in. We headed out the door for a 3 mile run which is tough when I'm pushing close to 50 pounds with her and the stroller. At the half-way point, I let her our to feed the goats. Goats will eat just about anything, including clothing and cans, so I bet the grapes we brought were a real treat. I let her walk a bit on the trail before putting her back in to finish the run. Our neighbor Ann was out front with her dog and we stopped in for a visit. I love the sense of community we're building on our street.
After her nap, we headed to Disneyland for her first trip! She went on Pirates of the Caribbean, The Jungle Cruise, and had some Dole whip on our way over to Fantasyland. While there, we rode Dumbo together and Dad snapped some photos of us and then we all went on the tea cups.
Exiting Dumbo, I became a bit emotional remembering the picture of Mom and I on the ride when I was two. Disneyland really does score high on the nostalgia factor, and I'm already imagining her taking her children there someday. Ending with the tea cups was perfect because you can't be sad spinning in circles in tea cups.
A few days later, baby and I were both sick with a cough and returned for another visit to Disneyland for just a few hours. One of the things I love most about having a pass is the freedom to go for just a few hours without the pressure to stay all day and "get our money's worth." I can't believe how quickly and frequently she gets sick when back at daycare. She was not sick all summer, and then is already sick her second week back.
I ended that third week of September with the last of my diagnostic procedures before starting our third round of IVF. We had a 7th birthday at Chuck-E-Cheese's in Foothill Ranch and would actually go there again. A previous visit to at a different location had us swearing them all of for...well, forever. But this one was much cleaner and nicer.
This was supposed to be followed by picking up a "free" playhouse that I found on Craigslist and a visit from my Dad, but getting this playhouse turned out to be a lot more time and labor intensive, and we had to reschedule her Grandpa and Uncle Glen visit. We had to rent a Uhaul, and it must weigh 600 pounds. It stayed in our driveway for a week until we figured out how to get it to our backyard. It is finally back there, thanks to the help of a small army of men we paid. Already, her "free" playhouse has set us back $300.
She has been enjoying and somehow knows that it is for her. I have fun putting toys of hers in there when she's not looking and watching her discover them. I also love when she takes me by the hand to sit in it, and imagining all of the ways I want to fix it up: adding a light, doorbell, fresh coat of paint, flower boxes, furniture and a mailbox.
The last weekend in September was officially fall, and also unseasonably hot; near 100 degrees in Orange County. Grandpa and Glen came for a visit, and we headed down to a playground on the peninsula in Newport. She was not at all interested in the playground since there was perfect wading water, with a safe, sheltered view of the bay. At first she was tentative, but soon was splashing and stomping her feet, leading Uncle Glen and I into the water with her by tugging on our finger. She has a pretty good grip! The water was crystal clear, and schools of fish just a few feet off were viable. We'll definitely be back.
Things I do not want to forget about this month:
- Bringing me my shoes (or Dad's shoes) for no reason in particular.
- How she strokes my eyelashes as she's falling asleep next to me with her bottle, or rubs my arm.
- How she dances by either alternating between raising her left and right arm (elbows bent), by slowly doing squats, or by turning in a circle.
- I hid her new Frozen scooter in her playhouse, for her to discover. But, it was dark so when I told her to look in her house and there was a shadowy figure, she was scared and raised her arms to me.
- She has made an association between the sink in our master bath and washing her hands. We are not sure how this happened, since we use different sinks to wash her hands! She will go in there, open the cupboard below, and then rub her hands together.
- She now carries her babies with her from room to room , pushes them in their stroller and puts them to bed. She will also pat their backs.
- Our first trip to Disneyland, all set up for Autumn.
- Learning to say "no" at our prompting, and getting close to "Hawaii"
- Faking Daddy out with a kiss at John's place on 9/25, the first day she learned how to pucker.
- Words she says: Dog, eye, hi, bye, mama, dada, baba.