Thursday, June 30, 2011


A little peaches al fresco, apres swimming

A man and his Itty Bitty


And then, the funniest picture of the day. She is saying "Grandpa, come home and save me from unsafe things! Danger, danger!"

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Inching Closer.

So, Sara and I have a bet going as to when the baby is going to crawl. She said she thought Ellie would start moving forward on Auntie Bee's birthday, the 1st. I said she wasn't close enough to forward mobility, so I said it probably wouldn't be until Uncle Jake's birthday, the 12th. Well, tonight Ellie managed to actually throw herself forward a few paces. Not quite crawling, but moving in the right direction. I'm beginning to think Sara might be right.

Then again, I thought Ellie was going to roll over for about six weeks before she actually achieved the feat. And then it took her another six weeks to do it on the regular. She gets how to pull herself forward with her arms, and she gets how to push herself forward with her feet, but she hasn't figure out how to do both things in concert.

Com'n, hands and feet!
(this blog entry refused to post yesterday. Stupid internets!)

Monday, June 27, 2011

Irish Eyes are Smiling.

She definitely has the Fitzpatrick pretty eyes!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Thiel Resort and Spa.

We've had a busy, fun weekend. Saturday we went down to Encinitas for Chris and Jolie's baby shower for their upcoming twin girls. Ellie was the only baby there and was very popular with the new grandparents to be. She rode on the swings, she snuggled with her mama, she petted a dog, and then cried if anyone else tried to hold her. Sorry great aunts! It was not the right moment in terms of her naptimes.

This morning we got to talk to Grandma and Grandpa from France. Their hotel looks over Omaha Beach, and they had some good adventures getting their rental car and finding the hotel. Today we went to the first birthday party for one of Tim's coworker's kids, where again, Ellie was the hit with grandparents. She also petted Pat and Megan's incredibly cute cat, and played with the multitude of toddler toys they have in their living room. She likes the stand up toys, but doesn't get that she could push them forward and walk. Probably because she's the laziest baby. Wile she took a nap, I stuck out and get a pedicure, which is what keeps a mommy from going nuts. Love me some massage chair and hoof care.

We started our morning talking to people in France, and then ended our evening hanging out with people from France! The Vogeleers are in town staying with mom and dad, so we went over for pool time, dinner time, and drinking nice wine time (well, wine for Tim. Water for me and milk for Ellie.) It was Ellie's first real trip into the fabulous pool and spa at the Thiel resort, and she LOVED it. She was a little freaked out by the waterfalls, but was happy as a clam as Auntie Sara and I swam around the pool with her. Then we spa-ed for awhile, which she liked even more. She is the swimmiest fish, and once we get her the appropriate pool floatie, she's in business for the summer months.

Dinner was lovely, and mom was thrilled because I let her give Elizabeth her first taste of ice cream, which she liked more than the squash and peas I was trying to feed her. While we were packing up, the Vogeleers caught sight of Sophie the giraffe, and they said yes indeed, Sophie has been around for many generations in France. It's not just a crazy marketing ploy. They were very interested in Ellie's bumbo chair - perhaps we should have a cultural exchange!

A little sketched out by the waterfalls in her cutie bear bathing suit

Enjoying the heck out of herself in the spa

The swimmiest fish!

And a little bit of "only in California." Check this out.
At first, it looks just like a guy on a motorcycle with a lot of gear on the back.

And then you realize, it's a guy with a dog in a special dog carrying case. Almost as good as the people I see on my morning walks with dogs in special dog strollers.

Friday, June 24, 2011


Tooth #2 is coming in with even more fussing than Tooth #1. We were very low on naps today, but high on cuteness in her little gingham romper. Tonight I went through her closet and pulled out all of the 12 months clothes to sort and wash, and tomorrow when everything's clean I'll go through and pull out the stuff that she's days away from outgrowing. It's always a bittersweet process - there are so many cute new things for her to try on, but it's sad to see some of my favorite outfits get folded up for another baby on another day.

We have a busy weekend in store - a baby shower and some time with our friends the Vogeleers, in from France.

Lulu came up to investigate if Ellie was getting anything delicious for dinner. Just veggies tonight, cat girl.

Those of you who have been to our house since the baby's been born may have noticed my giant big gulp hospital cup, which I fill with water and drain a couple of times a day. Ellie likes for me to offer her the straw to chew on, and tonight she figured out she can suck water out through it. You can't figure out the bottle, but can do the sippy and a straw cup? You confuse me kid.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Mostly Photos.

Life updates:
-We have managed to Skype with Grandma and Grandpa once from Paris. They have a gorgeous view of the Eiffel Tour from their hotel room, but they seemed more delighted to see their little granddaughter's serious face via the magic of the internet webs (it was right before nap time, and she was hoping I'd let her smash the keyboard. No can do!)
-Ellie had her first trip to the Mission on Wednesday, so her Grams could get some pictures of her with a fancy night blooming cactus, that had been tricked by the June gloom into blooming during the early afternoon.
-Swim class on Tuesday was wonderful as usual. I swear, she is the only baby in class who has NEVER cried in the water. Not when she gets her head wet, not when she gets her face dunked, not when she's forced to float on her back. Mission Viejo has a great swim team, and I think she's well on her way to being their newest junior member.
-We visited Daddy at work and saw his office! Did you know that his fancy workplace has the kitchen bake fresh cookies every day at 3pm? And he'd never invited me? So I invited my own fat ass and enjoyed a cookie and an iced coffee.
-Tooth #2 is on the way in. It hasn't popped through, but the gum line has broken, so I figure we'll see it in a few days. In the meanwhile, she can be a real crab apple at moments. Knowing that we're up against makes it easier for me to stay calm, but I am quite ready for Tim to get home in the evenings.
-And of course, always thankful to have mom and dad nearby for when I need a break.

Tomorrow, mommy class, lunch and a park date!

Checking out the koi in the Mission Fountain

Ol' Scowly with some of her ladies - Jackie, Grannie Ceannie, Grams and me. I think Ellie is just peeved that I forgot her sunglasses

So tiny and cute next to the hollyhocks.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day!

Glad to spend the day with two of the best daddies I know - my daddy-o, and Ellie's dadadadada.

And of course, Bonne fête des pères! to Grandpa Don, off in gay Paree!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Flower Girl.

It just begs the question - if your granddaughter was this cute, would you leave for a vacation? Or even a day long sailing trip? I didn't think so!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Monday, June 13, 2011


So today was the final day in our several day odyssey of driving all over Southern California. We were up this morning and on our way to LA with Eileen to visit Sister Mary Bridgit/Aunt Mary. Ellie slept the entire way up and woke up bright eyed and bushy tailed and ready to be the cute social butterfly she is (when well rested and well fed.) We went out for lunch and she was happy to sit in a high chair and play with a spoon (until of course, my food came, then she wanted me to hold her) but she kept her squawking down to a dull roar so the grown ups could talk.

After our visit was over, and since we were in my old 'hood, we went to my favorite vintage store, the grungy, delightful House of Return. They have an amazing selection of weird, sometimes amazing designer clothes. They didn't have any good sequins items that matched both my size and my budget, but I did have an amazing time trying things on. After pointing out a few local landmarks to Ellie, we were back on the road, where she immediately passed out. Hopefully she'll get a little more grandma time tomorrow before Grandma and Grandpa leave for Paris, France!

Tomorrow we will relax, perhaps visit the grocery store, but not drive all over the world. Maybe I'll finally catch the baby doing some rolling over!

All of the girls posing together.

Telling Aunt Mary a story or two.

Ellie and the oldest member of her big extended family!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Miles To Go Before We Sleep.

It's been QUITE the busy weekend for our intrepid explorer and her parents. Put a couple hundred miles on the car, sadly skipped a couple of naps, but happily got to love on many of our family and friends.

On Friday we drove down to the San Diego area for Eileen's cousin's retirement after 31 years in the Navy. Grandma Eileen was incredibly excited to get to show off her cute little baby lady friend. Ellie had kind of a rough night because there were a lot of sudden, loud noises (laughter, dogs barking, the occasional sneeze) that startle her and make her burst into tears. She did like watching the guy in charge of making tacos chop up meat, oddly enough. Her favorite part of the evening was sitting on the dining room table with her Grandma and some great aunts (and her great-great Aunt Maureen!) We had kind of a difficult time getting her home - she cried much longer in the car than normal, which breaks my heart. Finally (after a brief stop off to feed her a little) she gummed on her favorite doll's head until she fell asleep. My poor love bug.

Yesterday we spent the morning hanging out and cleaning the house, and then we headed out to Pari's house for book club. The first meeting was back in March, and we didn't have our stuff together enough to attend. This month we were able to clear the date, we were able to read the book, and we locked and loaded and drove out to Redlands. The girls were excited to see the smallest member, even though she'd failed to read the book and did not stay on topic during discussion time. But she persisted in being cute as heck, and rolled around on Pari's living room carpet like a crazy person (until of course, I got out the camera. Then she froze and just played with her feet. Even telling her to roll for Grandma Rosie didn't get another flip out of her, the little turd.)

So that brings us to today. We headed up to Long Beach to see Auntie Sara play basketball at the Special Olympics Summer Games. Auntie Sara has been just waiting for the moment when her Itty Bitty was big enough to manage at the games. I suspect we might have been slightly better off attending the upcoming winter games, but so be it. Ellie fell asleep in her carseat just as we pulled into the parking lot, and then woke up the instant the car stopped, so she was pretty pooped. The whistling and the air horns and the cheering of the basketball game threw her for a loop, even in the Baby Bjorn and with her family around her. She stayed around to see Sara play the beginning of her game, and then we had to go for a walk outside to quiet down. When we got back I fed her and she flat out passed out in my lap. She even kept sleeping when I stretched out my legs - I'd been sitting indian style and my legs had gone numb up to my knees. She did wake up in time to congratulate Sara and the other members of the Hawks for taking the gold medal. And then off to Grandma and Grandpa's house for an early Father's Day celebration for her Grandpa Don. While the rest of us had some Chinese food, Ellie slurped down an enormous container of squash, the crazy little lady! Despite the fact that she'd taken a little snoozer with her daddy, she was pretty inconsolable with tiredness when we left.

Tomorrow we're hanging out with Grandma again, and going up to Culver City so Ellie can meet the eldest member of her extended family - Sister Mary Bridgit. However, this is an afternoon thing, and I'm hoping we'll be home in time for a long, healthy afternoon nap and a regular dinner, bath and bedtime routine, for the first time in what feels like a million years. Our busy girl needs her beauty sleep!

With Auntie Sara

Gold medal winner and gold medal snoozer.

Do I have something on my face? How about on my eyelashes?

I can use my snaggletooth to open your beer bottle!

This is what happens when Gramps won't let her chew on his glasses. Mean old Gramps

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Swimming Videos!

Auntie Sara was able to come and help out at swim class today, so I took some videos of the excellent swimming action.

Getting a snootful!

Backfloatin' it up!

Check out those kickers!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

7.5 months.

Oh my goodness, we are growing by leaps and bounds over here. I realized the other day that I am perhaps meant to be the mother of a seven and a half month old. Having a newborn was sweet, in the way that tiny babies are sweet and cute and oh so small, but I don't know that I enjoyed it, persay. It was not easy, and not all that fun. But man, is this baby ever getting fun.

She's finally started rolling with some vigor and can now go from belly to back pretty easily. Back to belly seems to take more fits and starts for her, but if she wants it, she can finally get all the way over and pull her arm out from underneath herself. Tummy time is more fun for her than it's ever been, and that's good. Some days, she'll pull her knees under herself and rock a little, but I think we're still a ways off from crawling. And frankly, I'm in no rush for her to crawl, because I know I will quickly miss the days when I could plop her down on her cute little butt and walk out of the room for a second without worrying about her scooting over and licking an electrical socket (because no, we have not baby proofed yet.) I am already trying to figure out how I'll shower once she's mobile. Right now, she sits and plays with Mirror Baby and a toy or two, but if she can crawl, I'll probably have to make her hang out in the bathroom with me.

She's also gotten better about eating her solids. It's as though once she cut a tooth, she realized how delicious and fun it is to eat real food, so she's been chowing down on plums and sweet potatoes in record quantities.

She is such a happy baby. During the first three months, when she wanted to either eat all the time or cry, I worried that she was going to grow up to be some difficult, nervous, cry baby child. But now unless she's tired or hungry (or unless I leave the room) she's generally smiley and giggly. She's still not much of a snuggler, but she does love to be kissed on, and with cheeks like hers, how can I resist her? I just love her to bits.

Today she went and had a play date at Grandma and Grandpa's. Play date is the term Grandma has asked us to use to denote the times when we show up, hang out for a little bit, then run away while the baby is not looking and have a hot date! Then we come back and have dinner and talk about how cute the baby is, all together! Tim and I saw Bridesmaids, which I have been dying to see since it was first advertised, and it did not disappoint. There were parts where I was laughing so hard that I thought I might pass out. And Elizabeth thoroughly enjoyed her time with her grandparents, as she always does. Now if only she'd get back to her old, good sleeping routines. Today we got a chance to look through Tim's baby book, and it turns out, he was much the same way. He didn't crawl until 9 months old, for reference. So she's not behind her dad's curve yet (I was already dancing ballet by her age.)

Friday, June 3, 2011

Baby Make Out Session.

She is eager. I am giving her the side eye, unsure of how well she's going to behave herself.

Her aim is not great, and as you can see, her kisses are a little slobbery.

Pulling back a little, trying to negotiate with the little cootie queen.

And finally, just giving in to the sweetness of her little baby face. She's such a love.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Ellie and Friends.

Just a couple of cute pictures of Elizabeth and her baby crew:
Here they are at a Memorial Day BBQ. This is only about half of the bunch, all getting so big! Ellie is in heaven, being the only lady baby on scene.

This is from a park date the other week. Elizabeth is being a baby zombie and chewing on her littlest baby friend, also named Elizabeth! She's trying to take down little Elizabeth because she's getting so big, and threatening to overtake her as "Big" Elizabeth.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Doing Grown Folks Stuff.

So, even though my baby is only seven months old, I have quickly learned that things go differently than I think they're going to go on this parenting journey. Today at knitting Ellie was snuggled up with her Tia Tillie, and suddenly, her Go-Go Gadget hands shot out, grabbed Tillie's chocolate chip cookie, and shoved it in her piehole, where she began chomping. We replaced the cookie with a cracker-type deal (because sugar is not great for babies, and they recommend no dairy until after a year) and Ellie continue to just chow down on it.

It got me thinking - there is a school of thought about baby feeding called Baby Led Weaning. Rather than the parent spooning puree into a baby's mouth for them to swallow, Baby Led Weaning advises giving the baby table food in safe sized pieces and letting the baby feed themselves, so that they learn how to chew their food instead of just swallowing it, and so they have control over their own eating. Ellie's enthusiasm for chomping on the cookies got me thinking. First off, I bought her some teether cookies for her to work her little tooth on (getting bigger, and poking through more of her gum every day.) And then tonight, when we had asparagus and chicken for dinner, I just gave her some on her tray. The asparagus I just gave her as a straight spear (cooked) and the chicken I tore into small pieces for her. She wasn't interested in the chicken but she did chomp through the asparagus. And then, lo and behold, when I busted out the pureed carrots, she DUG IN. Most nights, it's a struggle to get the first bite of food into her mouth and then sometimes she'll realize she likes what I'm serving and start eating, and sometimes, I just end up with food all over her face and none in her belly and I give up, because I have bigger battles to fight. This was the most amiable and food focused I've seen her... EVER. Makes sense that my willful daughter would eat better after she spent some time being allowed to feed herself. So, we'll see how it goes. If I make something for dinner that's safe for her to eat, I want her to try it. Until she's a year, nursing will still be how she gets 90% of her calories, so as long as she's nursing well, she's welcome to try any solids that strike her fancy. Unless it's my food, of course. Then back off, baby!

Here she is with her asparagus. She ate through the spear, and then was basically done with it. But she tried it! And seemed to like it!

Today at knitting she also sat in a chair of her own for the very first time. She is turning into quite the regular little lady.

I love her more every day. She is just so fun. She's starting leaning in to give me sweet little baby kisses (open mouthed and drooly) and she's closer to crawling every day. Tonight while Tim was grilling, we brought her out and sat her on the lawn, where she played with her rattle and squealed and was just absolutely darling in the last of the evening sunshine. I feel so amazingly grateful that she's my little baby face, and that I have such a wonderful family.

My sweetie peatie. Please notice the spoon in the lower left corner - she loves nothing more than to drag that over her gums lately.