Monday, July 14, 2014

Life lately

We are loving summer here in Princeton, even Matt has been able to join us in the fun. :) It's been laid back yet really busy. Funny how that works. I'm now watching Baby X around 45 hours a week. The first week was crazy, but last week I felt pretty comfortable with both kids. Our scheduled with him looks something like this.

Monday - Play inside all morning - Nap - Play until dinner
Tuesday - Neighborhood playgroup - Nap - Play until dinner
Wednesday - Church playgroup - nap - play until dinner
Thursday - play - nap - walk around downtown Princeton and farmer's market
Friday - play - nap - park

Playing lately has been almost all outdoors with our friends. Usually there is water to play in and chairs for the moms. It's lovely. I found if I have something structured for half of the day, the other half seems to fly by. If I don't, I seem to look at the clock until nap time. Madeleine loves playing outside. When she wakes up from nap, she grabs her shoes and runs to the front door screaming "Mum-meeee".  If I let her out, she grabs the stroller and walks to her friend Be's house. It's adorable.

When Baby X isn't around we have a lot of fun too. Here are a few of the things we've been up to.


We've been going at least once a week. It's wonderful. Sometimes we go to Applebee's on the way home or walk around the Outlet mall.


Last weekend I bought a bike! So far it's been a great purchase since we've biked to the grocery store, Trader Joe's, Walmart, the library, and church. Madeleine loves it. When Matt is home, she grabs her helmet and walks up to his bike, usually screaming, "Dada!" 

World Cup
Living in student housing, I think, made watching the world cup so much more fun. We watch many of the matches with our neighbors, and then we saw yesterday's game at the Princeton library. There were so many people there and it was wonderful experience.

I've been taking a yoga class and it's one of the highlights of my week. It's a little over an hour and half long and is exactly what I need at the end of the week.

Watching lighting storms
There has been some fabulous lighting storms. Matt and I have enjoyed watching them together after Madeleine is in bed.


Our garden is doing pretty well! We've been eating a lot of salads from it and our tomatoes are just about ripe! 

We've been going through our stuff and getting rid of things after Madeleine has gone to bed. It's been a wonderful on-going process and we're pretty happy with it.

Trying a lot of new recipes

Some have been good...some have been really awful.

Throw in a lot of chocolate milkshakes and that's been our summer so far. It's been delightful. Matt is liking his work and I'm loving mine. :)

How has your summer been?

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

18 months

Madeleine is 18 months!

She's 22 lb and 9 oz.
She's somewhere around 31 1/2 inches.

While 18 months is just at the beginning of toddlerhood, Madeleine doesn't toddle. She doesn't even walk much. Life is too exciting, so we end up running everywhere. It's adorable. Her little arms jiggle as she pumps her arms, and she is fast! I end up having to run after her which usually makes her burst into giggles as I chase her down.

She loves parks. We go at least twice a week. Swings and slides are her favorite. She has no fear going down any slide by herself. Other parents always give me weird looks as I sit watching her climb up these big structures alone, but she's careful and so independent. 

She's curious about everything. She oo and awes at everything she likes and points to any baby or shiny shoe. She waves to cars. She love picking up stuff of the ground and looking at them.

 She frequently shares what she finds neat too. She hand us nuts, mushrooms, leaves, and even charcoal, gabbering at us the whole time.

At her 18-month appointment, she swiped the doctors pen and continued to fill out the developmental questionnaire for the parents. She knows how to swipe my credit card and then will grab the stylus and sign her name on the electronic signature pad. Sometimes it even accepts her signature.

Madeleine still likes to imitate us. She will carry our adult-sized broom around the house and try to sweep. She will stand between us and the shopping cart and help push. The other day at Gap kids, she found a doll baby carriage and pushed it around the store, navigating obstacles with surprising prowess. She then proceeded to head for the entrance and was very upset when she wouldn't let us keep it. In nursery on Sundays, the other kids will usually sit fairly obediently, but Madeleine spends all of her time trying (and on one occasion succeeding) to break the locks on the cupboards so that she can get to the toys and snacks early. She insists on drinking from a cup or water bottle when possible and is also a big fan of drinking fountains. She washes her hand in sinks and loves automatic paper towel dispensers.

Sometimes she finds socks or shoes on the ground. Shoes are one of her very favorite things, and in her mind, every shoe deserves a foot. We frequently find our feet being attacked as she tries to put shoes on us. Poor Baby X gets this more than the rest of us. I walked in the other day on her trying to put Sophie's shoe on him. He was looking at me all confused. And then the other week this happened to my foot.

Shoes are not her only accessory that she's obsessed with. She has this uncanny knack of finding a bracelet in any store we walk into. At home, we don't have any bangles, so she improvises.

She puts on her own headbands, hats, and necklaces. Her little friend Bea spend a lot of time taking off each other shoes and hats and putting them back on. It usually goes well, except sometimes Bea's hat is attached to her head. Then Madeleine will pull on her hat and make Bea cry. They have a bit of a rough relationship, since neither of them understand the laws of physics. But other times they will hold each other hands and walk together. 

 Madeleine also has a great laugh. Sometimes she'll be doing something she finds incredibly hilarious, such as hiding behind a curtain or trying to bite our noses as we tuck her into bed and she will laugh, pause, smile at us, and then laugh some more in a very infectious way. She is a big fan of jumping on the bed, only she doesn't have perfect balance yet, so what she'll do is stand on the floor next to the bed and bounce on her butt from sitting to standing over and over again. More laughs.

She loves food. She eats all the time. She's worse than an hobbit. Last night I made us a smoothie for after dessert snack. I poured it in a large cup and put two straws in it to cut down on dishes. Madeleine sat there on the stool across from me on the kitchen floor sipping on her straw. Every time I took the straw out of my mouth, her little hand would shove it back in my mouth. When her straw no loner got to the bottom though, she took that straw and finished it up. If we try splitting  a milkshake her Matt and I are lucky to get a sip in and we have to sneak the glass to the waiter to avoid any tears. 

She loves to draw. Right now her favorite thing to draw with is markers and pens. But we frequently play with chalk, paint, paint pens, and colored pencils. Her favorite color is still green. Her little green blanket is her constant companion with her binky and Sophie. If we need her to go somewhere we just shake the blanket in the direction we need to go and she'll run. Her binkies are funny because if she find one around the house, she'll pop out the one in her mouth, and sit there on the floor, putting on in and taking it out before she decides which one she wants.

She's really sweet. She gives hugs and says "aaaaw". She rocks Sophie in a car seat and puts sunglasses on her and says "bye!!" She cries when other babies cry. She holds hands with other kids and tries to help them. She cuddles. She gives Baby X his blanket if I give him the wrong one. She rocks him when he cries. She's going to be a great big sister one day. She loves to say "Mummie" while spinning in circles.

Basically, 18 months is really cool age. It's fun and I love watching Madeleine grow from a baby to a kid. There are so many other things we can say about her. She's basically just really awesome.