Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Home Safe & Birthday Gifts.

We have returned back behind the Orange Curtain, after a lovely time with Bob and Nancy in the Bay Area. There was a little drama with Tim's car, and I dropped my phone in a gas station parking lot and cracked the heck out of the screen (still useable, but probably not for very much longer - I'm sure to drop it again soon and just shatter it to pieces) but otherwise it was a wonderful time with some fabulous friends. Baby Amelia is a little doll, and Ellie enjoyed hanging out with her, pushing her in the swing and watching her get her diaper changed. Though she can say Amelia, she mostly called her "her." And would ask for more her, her mama, her dada, her fresh diaper... it was very funny and cute.

Ellie was a great little traveler, but when deciding when to come home, we opted to not risk having her in the car, awake, for 7 straight hours and instead came home a little early, leaving Sunday night. This time, we put her in her pajamas straight away, so that she could fall asleep whenever she felt like it. When we were in Gilroy, she started whining for cow milk, and thankfully we could stop at a gas station and fill her sippy. A half hour later, she was sound asleep, and she didn't make a peep throughout the rest of the ride. Rolled into our driveway at 1:45, and Tim and I were asleep in our own bed at 2. AM. But still! We were home in our own lovely bed.

And of course, our well rested daughter was up at 7am on Monday morning. The good news was that Monday was also my birthday, and as a lovely present, Gigi took Ellie home with her after lunch, and I got to climb back into my bed (now with freshly laundered sheets and a down comforter fresh from the dry cleaner) and take myself a fat old nap. It was like a tiny slice of heaven.

I got to spend the rest of my birthday with my family - swimming in the pool was great, even though Tim beat me at zip and Dad dunked me and then held me under water, and mom made taco salad and strawberry shortcake. PLUS there was canned whipped cream, and we were total pigs, spraying it into our mouths. Ellie thought it was pretty great too. She was really funny on Monday - after the pool she refused to put her clothes back on, so was wandering around in a diaper and a paper crown from her toy box. She actually spent most of dinner like that, sobbing because we were eating instead of taking her out to see the hop hops, the little snot. She was enthused about helping me open presents though.

Being on vacation was interesting in that being out of her routine really shook things up for her. The biggest thing is that we're done nursing. We'd been done to just the mornings for a few weeks, and while at Bob and Nancy's she was so busy in the mornings that she never even asked. This morning I went into her room armed with a sippy cup of regular milk, and she curled up in my lap on the couch, sucked it down and then went about her day. Totally painless for both of us. I'm grateful that we made it this long, because I think nursing has been a good parenting tool and obviously great nutrition, but I am also SO ready to be done. I just didn't want it to be a huge fight. I get to fight with her about enough things related to eating (like... her desire to eat two popsicles all the time.) Speaking of eating though, she seems to FINALLY be mastering the use of the fork. She has had trouble with "poking" her food hard enough to actually spear it, but did much better at Bob and Nancy's dining room table, putting away an entire pancake one morning and an entire hamburger patty that night.

Since we got back, the cats have been over the moon to see us. Thor is so desperate for love that he actually let THIS happen.

That's right. He let her touch him. She is smelling his fur. She said he smells good.

You know who doesn't smell good? Her little white cat friend that she has latched on to as her one true love.

Pictured here during Biscuit Story Time with Grizz (wearing only a crown and diaper.) That cat was a gift from our friend Shannon, and was actually the first gift Ellie received at the hospital. He's been sort of kicking around our house with all of her stuffed animals. For a long time, she was more into babies than stuffed animals, and never really seemed to pick one animal friend over another. Now, it's all kitty cat, all the time. She sleeps with him clutched like that. She walks around the house like that. She plays like that. Tonight, she was running around and kicking a soccer ball, without ever letting Kitty Cat out of her chokehold. He needs a bath, but I'm not sure when I can separate the two of them for the two hours a fluff and fold would take.

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