Monday, November 21, 2011

Chicago in November

I made a spur of the moment visit to Chicago the weekend prior to Thanksgiving this year to visit my friend Elizabeth. Liz has 2 girls- 23 month old Maggie and 6 month old Isabel. Here's Isla and Maggie on our Girls' Breakfast morning walk.

This trip marked a first for me- first time traveling by plane with Isla on my own. Jason was on a business trip and met us in Chicago. Non-stop travel with Isla is definitely doable. We spent a lot of time hangin' out inside and letting the girls play. Below is a photo of Isla and me, Liz and her 2 girls, and Jenny and Ellie. This is the best we could get for a group shot.

We made an exciting trip to the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum, which included adventures with strollers on the bus. Below Maggie and Isla discuss butterflies in the butterfly room.

This picture is just so sweet to me, because if you compare the photo directly below to the last photo of Liz and I- Maggie is just about a 1/2 head talker than Isla, as Liz is to me.

On this trip I also got to see my friend Megan who helped us out on the big trip to the museum. Megan makes everything fun.

I also got to spend some time with my brother Jon who lives in Chicago, but we did not photograph him. So many friends and brother to see in Chicago- I must go back again soon!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Isla Rose, 20 months old

Isla has definitely reached new levels of understanding. She understands what we are saying most of the time, we can give her directions and she follows, she answers yes- "dah" with one quick head nod and "no" with shakes of head. She sometimes "chats" on the phone, or tells stories in baby babble. She knows and recognizes more friends and familiar people. I can tell her where we are going and who she will see- and she is excited for the next adventure.

Isla still gets impatient with car rides around town. But she has been very entertained by signing "stop" at red lights and "go" for green. Sometimes she thinks I should blow a red light and go anyway, or plow into stopped cars ahead of me.

Swimming- Isla and I had been doing once a week Mommy and Me swim lessions through the summer, and I noticed at some point she regressed and really didn't like going under the water anymore. So, I decided to enroll her in more intense 5 day a week lessons at "Ms. Diana's" house. Now I have a little fish! Isla loves to swim and has no problem pushing off the wall or jumping off the steps to swim to me. I am truly amazed at her ability to swim at such a young age.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Jenny Visit

The first weekend of October, my good friend Jenny McC came to visit us in San Antonio again. We had a wonderful weekend together. And it was especially great to have her help over a few days that Jason was out of town. On one of those days Isla had her worst teething day ever.

She was a mess, banging her head on the ground, crankyness like
I've never seen before. And this was with alternating Tylenol and Advil every 2 hours. I think I would have lost it if I had been on my own. When we got back from trying to eat out (taking turns eating while the other watched Isla and distracted her with wind chimesoutside the restaurant), I gave Isla a bowl of ice cream.

After she threw the bowl at me and tried to fling ice cream at me like a rabid monkey, I left the room. Jenny helped Isla with the ice cream which gradually numbed her mouth. 10 minutes later they are down there giggling and playing!

Highlights of the were spending a girls day shopping at the Shops at La Cantera, a day at the zoo and Brackenridge Park with Isla, and time loungin' by the pool.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Isla Rose, One and a half!

Chompers. Isla has had is rough over the past couple of months. We've had a lot of crabby days. While teething her 1st set of molars was not any fun, now she can chomp on bigger pieces of foods like a pro.
Hand-foot-mouth. There's been an outbreak of HFM disease this summer, and Isla got this weird disease too. Isla's friend Truman had the illness a couple weeks before her, so we were quick to identify it; and not to freaked out by outbreak of rash, followed by snake-skin peeling of hands and feet, and lastly, fingernails falling off.

Isla is very sure on her feet these days, she can run, climb, and walk up and down the stairs while holding a rail or a hand. For a couple of days she even thought she could walk down steps all on her own, but then she became cautious again, and stopped the "no hands" trick.

We can't keep track of all of the words Isla says anymore, or the signs she knows. The cutest is when she says the name of a friends. Isla's best friend is Sloane, and she gets excited when Sloan comes over to play. For a while Sloan was "shoe" but now she says a much more accurate version. She loves when we pull into the driveway and says "home." She knows a lot of body parts, including tough ones like elbow and dimples. She also knows that she is "Isla" and says "Eye-ya" or sometimes just a long sounding out of "Eye." Isla can draw repetitive circles with chalk and crayons. Below is a photo of Isla and "Mickey." We wanted to look for the rightful owners of this pretty dog we found in the neighborhood, but he jumped over our fence and escaped that same night. If we needed to find him a new home, we decided it would be great to demonstrate he was good with kids- he even let Isla try to put goggles on him.

Pretend Play. Isla has gotten very into her stuffed animals and dolls. She loves to carry them around with her. She has a crew of them in her crib for bedtime and naptime. They go on car rides and trips with us, sit next to her for meals. Sometimes a friend will even ask for a bite, and Isla will offer a spoonful of her food. While her favorites rotate, right now Bunny is the bestest. She holds him and pats him at bedtime. She once snuck Bunny into the bathtub, and had the most-fun bath ever!

Friday, August 26, 2011

The Uncle Trip

Jason and I were overdue for a visit to our brothers- Jason's brother, Kevin, and my brother, Joe. So, we decided to visit them both in an all in one trip to Palo Alto, CA and then to Portland, OR. First stop, California, where we got to spend time with Kevin and Brittany.

We did a lot of fun site-seeing with Kevin, during the day, and then lots of yummy dinners out all together when Brittany returned from work. Here's Kevin and Isla in the California Academy of Sciences checking out some fish (above).

Kevin even got some good snuggles after he showed Isla snakes and lizards (above). And here's Isla and Brittany (below).

Isla and I sometimes wear matching purple fleece.
Here's our family pic at Stanford's campus- where smarty pants Kevin is attending college and getting some crazy degree.

Jason and I missed the Redwoods last time we were in San Francisco, but we made it there this time. We made Kevin carry Isla for the hike. She yelled at him every time he stopped walking, because she did not appreciate her nap schedule being disrupted for a 2 hour time change.

Then we hopped on a quick plane to Portland. Joe and my sister in law Michelle are cooking up my very first niece! Who we called Josephina Michellalina. Josephina Michellalina is due early January. We also got to spend time with JENNY! Here we all are down at the Saturday Market.
We also went to an awesome India Festival and ate yummy Indian foods. Here's Michelle and Isla chowin' down.

Thanks for such an awesome trip, Kevin, Brittany, Joe, Michelle, and Jenny!!!!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Isla Rose, 16 months old

I have been feeling overwhelmed by this blog post. There has been such an explosion in development and personality in the past 2 months, I don't know where to begin.
Duck, duck, duck! Isla can say "ma" "dad" "shoes" "duck" Cats say "Eee-ow" and Dogs say "arf" and "foof" "Hi" "hot" "baf" for bath "Uh-oh". Once Isla learned "up" she started coming up to us many times throughout the day, arms held up, with the request "up." While in Michigan, Isla got out a her rubber duckies and started shouting "duck" "duck" "duck!" over and over just because she was so proud she could.
She started signing a lot more too. She loves to watch the Baby Signing Time videos and can do "Grandma" "Grandpa" "boat" "book" "banana" "baby" milk" "juice" "water" "airplane" "train". Except, she's confused about what is a train, and uses the sign for other things, like her toy truck. Isla will open a book and babble out a whole story while turning the pages. She started to do a cute little dance bounce, and sometimes a leg shake/tap to music.
The above 3 photos are of Isla playing in the water. We have been doing this about every day of the summer- due to the record heat wave. Sometimes, we just let her go nakey.

Isla can sometimes accomplish stabbing food with a fork and inserting it into her mouth. She can climb into couches and chairs, and from there onto the table. She can go up and down one step in the upright position.
Isla loves when airplanes fly through the sky and when she spots one, she just stares and smiles. Isla has a funny way of asking "where" by turning both hands up, and has this questioning look on her face. She is just oozing personality these days, if you can't tell from these photos.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Trip to Michigan

We made a trip to Michigan for the first week in July for a family reunion with my mom's side. It was so wonderful to see all my cousins, big and small, that we don't see enough of! We had a nice relaxing week on Lake Michigan just south of the Little Sable Lighthouse. We arrived on the evening of my 32nd birthday. Everyone singing "The Itsy Bitsy Spider" to Isla just before singing Happy Birthday to me, sent me into a giggle fit. My sis Michelle was so on top of things, she baked me a cake in Peoria, and brought it up to Michigan for that evening.

The next morning we headed to the dairy farm for an Ice Cream Social. Here's the whole gang getting ready for our dairy tour.

Here we are, both 32. Jason's bday is 4 days before mine. Whenever I start to feel old, I like to remind myself one day I'll look back on "this picture" and think 'we look so young'.

Another fun thing we did was attend a fish boil at a farm in town. Isla thought that fish was yummy.
The swim across Lake Silver:
Earlier in 2011, my brother Joe proposed that he and I swim across Lake Silver while in Michigan together. So, I got myself back into the pool, after not really swimming for exercise since college, and started to train for the mile swim. After a couple months of swimming, I felt pretty good in the water again.

On the morning of Sunday July 3rd, we got our family to load up into Pontoon boat to follow/ guide us across the lake. We also had convinced my cousin Steve to swim with us. Standing out on that dock the morning of the big swim, the sand dunes on the other side looked so close. So, with confidence we took off.
About half way across, I was getting pretty frustrated with the swim, and internally smite those dunes, for they seemed to be getting farther away with each stroke. Luckily, every time I lifted my head from the murky water to make sure I was aimed in the right direction, I heard my little cousins Lucy and Abigail cheering "Go, Amanda, Go!" So I decided to buckle down and not look for awhile.
As I got very close to the dunes, the boat docked and my little cousins ran out onto the beach. They were running back and forth right in front of me, but I could not touch the bottom. I though I was hallucinating. But, there is just a steep drop off on that side of the lake about 4 feet from the shore. So, I did make it across, and accomplished this small feat of strength that my brother Joe concocted. Above I am grossed out at the green slime that was all over the inside of my swim suit.
On this trip we got to meet the newest member of the family, cousin Allison, who turned one in June.

Isla also got to meet her one and only Great Grandparent- Grandpa Ernie! Grandpa had a raging game of "which hand is it hiding in" going with Isla one evening.

From Michigan we headed for a brief visit to St. Louis to visit with Grandma and Grandpa Seats. We took Isla to Grants' Farm and she got to meet some baby goats. We also got together with some of our friends and saw the Melissa Ludwig Band of San Antonio play in their Midwest Tour in St. Louis.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day, Jason

My favorite "Jason as Isla's Father" memory of the year:

When we were on vacation in Mexico, I gave Jason the task of putting on Isla's socks and shoes while I packed the diaper bag before we headed out. As I rounded the corner to grab something from the bathroom, there was Jason holding up several pairs of little pink socks in front of the mirror while holding Isla. He was trying to find the pink sock that best matched the pink in her outfit. Isla, that's how much your daddy cares.

Happy Father's Day!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Congratulations, Paul and Lindsay!

Jason and Isla and I made a trip to the Outer Banks of North Carolina for our friends' Paul and Linsday's cute, quaint, outdoor wedding. How did we get invited to this exclusive event? Well, Jason imported this Brit named Paul to San Antonio for work, and then we introduced him to eligible bachelorette, Lindsay. Well, we just put them in the same room at the same time several times (Friends' Thanksgiving 2009, Baby Shower 2010) and sparks flew. So, of course we needed to be there for their nuptials.
Now Isla's been to the Pacific and the Atlantic. Although on our last day in NC, our trip to the beach was derailed by an extremely cranky baby and we never actually touched the water. But, we did get to explore the Festival Park, and got to see and learn about the first colonies. Here's Isla on a boat! Replica of the Elizabeth II.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Isla Rose, 14 months old

Smooth walkin' Walking is now Isla's main mode of transportation.
She'd rather push the stroller than ride in it.
She's gotten very smooth and can take on thresholds, uneven terrain, and likes to run around and play soccer with dad. She has gotten really good at walking down the stairs if you give her a hand to hold.

5 new toofers! After the long wait, Isla finally grew some more teeth. The 2 front teeth popped out the day she was the most sick with her tummy bug. The eye teeth soon followed. Then the one to the right of those first bottom two. But their has been a strange delay on the one to the left. So, now she's uneven with 7 teeth total. She can take smiley-shaped bites out of her food.

Lids Right now Isla is really into taking plastic lids out of the cabinet and scattering them on the kitchen floor. The other day she also thought it was fun to put them back. She loves taking on and off anything that has a small plastic lid, and recently figured out how to unscrew caps too. Then she likes to guzzle what is in said container. Suddenly my home is full of poisoning hazards.

Yum/ Yuck Isla has developed more of an opinion about what she eats. She likes something one day, and doesn't like it the next. She figured out how to eject food from her mouth if she doesn't like it. She often ejects food just at first bite, just because she's not sure. Sometimes she select something, put it in her mouth, and then spit it back out because something else catches her fancy. She thinks crayons and chalk are especially tasty.

Hugs and Kisses Isla has started to give gratuitous hugs and kisses. She'll come over and give hugs, and pat, and sometimes hug my leg if I'm standing up. She also kisses the pictures in books, especially birds, dogs, cats, bears, and baby faces. Isla loves to look at and read books. Her favorite book right now is "Feely Bugs." She often toddles over to me with book in hand and then turns around and plops her hiney down on my lap so I can read to her.

Language Isla started to sign "cracker." She doesn't have a whole lot of new words, but has all sorts of interesting babble, and such inflection. She'll hold the phone to her ear and babble.

This is a rare event- Isla has to be completely exhausted before she'll fall asleep in the car. Photo-worthy.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Grandma, Grandpa, Aunt Tina, and the Easter Bunny

This is the one millisecond that Isla let these bunny ears perch atop her head. As you can see I am in position to leave photo frame after placing them on her head.

How to hunt an egg:

Grandma and Grandpa Seats came down for a quick Easter visit- and we finally got Jason's sister, Tina, to San Antonio for the first time. We had a nice laid back weekend. It's warm enough for pool time now. Here's Isla spending some quality time with Tina.
Isla went on an egg hunt, and was pretty entertained by the activity. I did a practice run earlier in the week with her playgroup. Sometimes Grandpa doubles as an Easter Bunny. Photo below: "Arg, why do you make me work so hard for these eggs, Grandpa!"

And then we had lots of fun with stickers in eggs, put them on the paper, and then color with crayon activity.
Here we are at our Easter Sunday meal.