playdates galore

It's only 2:15pm, and we've already been to TWO playdates! I'd like to thank Melissa & Gwen and Lora & Liam...and all the other mamas & babies that were involved in wearing our little rascal out :)

No better way to start the morning than by having some play time with Mia's sweet Auntie M and her favorite cousin Gwen (ok, Gwen is her
only cousin, but if there were oodles more, Gwen would still be the favorite). It was a group playdate, so mama Esther and her little Noa got to play, too. Mia thinks that Gwen has the most fabulous toys and books. Amongst her favorites is the Baby Einstein book with all the mirrors and all the toys that gave Mia the opportunity to turn into marvelous hats.
Auntie M enthusiastically played with a duck puppet...quacks and all...for the girls. Noa laughed so hard, she literally ROTFL! Melissa was also keenly aware how important hats are to Mia, and happily wore a groovy orange hat (bowl) for Mia's enjoyment. I always love sitting back, watching the little ones play and chat with other moms. It's such a welcome break from the busy life of raising a toddler.

After the Merry Melissa playdate, we dashed over to Lora & Liam's for an semi-impromptu playdate. Lora's mother is in town, and Lora wanted her to meet some of Liams pals...and their mamas :) The Gymboree bubbles were unleashed on the frenzied crowd of toddlers. Lora actually resembled the Pied Piper...with toddlers, not rats, silly! I hadn't seen Lora, Heather, Keitha, Hayley, Gabrielle and Eva in what seemed like months. I really do have a delightful circle of friends, and it's lovely when we get to see each other. Mia was so comfy. She'd get lost in playing for a while, then look up, search for me, point and say 'Mama'. Like she has dibs on me or something...which she does. The cutest thing was when Samuel and Liam both wanted the ball popper, and proceeded to squabble over it, amidst the fuss Kanai stept between them and took off with the ball popper before the boys knew what hit 'em. Priceless.


let's catch up, shall we?

Last week, Mia caught a little bug , but was only down for about a day and a half. Then, she passed it over to me. Friday was hard (hard enough to miss a playdate with my girls), but then Saturday was a lot better! So, we think it's just a 36 hour then it's over thang.

I had some time to myself Sat morning. We were going to go look at houses, but decided against it at the last moment. I think my honey wanted to be lazy and play with Mia. Ok by me, so I ran a few errands. I think I did too much too soon after not feeling well, so I took a nap when Mia did. After that and a late lunch, we all headed out to the sprinkler park in Leander. It's obviously our fav. So close to home, and practically deserted in the late afternoon/early evenings. Mia gets more comfy and has a better time every time we go. She was actually interested in an area that has suspended buckets that fill with water then tip over when full, water crashing to the ground. I made the mistake of putting her under one the time before last and it knocked her down and made her cry. Bad mama! But this time, with her strong Daddy, she seemed very interested in it, but not so that she wanted to stand under it...just explore by it. Then we walked over to the playscape and played for a while. It really is a nice park.

We were supposed to help Suzy celebrate her birthday Saturday night, but her poor sinuses were being accosted by big bad mold spores and had her laid out in bed for almost 3 days! Sunday afternoon, was a little better for her, so we popped by with a homemade birthday cake and a couple of cards. Mia picked hers out all by herself. She saw the one with the duck and made a bee line towards it. She added a little bit of her art for her Suzy :)

I think I'm going to have to count how many times I start off with 'we were supposed to...' Having a kid sure does make your plans not as concrete as they used to be. Well, we were supposed to hop over to the library to return books and submit Mia's summer reading log....but she needed a nap. After her nap, we set out on our bikes (Mia in her maxin' in her trailer) for a beer run :) We did hit a great neighborhood park where Mia swung with her Daddy and went down a very big slide!

Mia is going to hang out with her Nana (Daryl's Mom) on Wednesday so I can get some packing and last minute errands done. So, today was spent reading books, playing with blocks, looking at and playing in the rain, and all sorts of fun stuff. Just good Mama and Mia time. We're going to be away from her for 6 days pretty soon, and I want every minute to count.

Oh, I almost forgot. Mia spent some time stacking and sorting my nail polish this afternoon. I can just sit and watch her for hours.

see my fancy heart umbrella?

(she's actually pointing to a raindrop)

ready to bust outta the sprinkler park

NOT wanting to give Suzy her duck card

Happy Birthday Suzy!!!!!

Mia's so strong, she 'kicked' Daddy who doubled over in 'pain'. Mia LOVED it!

Hey!! I'm at the PARRRRRRRK!!!!

Stacking Mama's polish

Daddy Stylin Mia's do

hangin in the living room

All about the colorful polish


she knows a few things

My mom asked today if Mia knew any new words. Here's an updated list:

Words she says when she sees it without being prompted (please keep in mind that Mia is a little shy and doesn't really do this a lot around other people w/o being prompted):
dog, Niles, Mama, Dada, Nana, Pa Pa, Ita, Max, juice, milk, night night, light, book, ball, car, papa (food), snack, grapes, duck, pig, wheel (for pinwheel), side (for outside...this is a very popular word), peas, monkey, pop (for lollipop..in one of her books), berry (strawberry), berry berry (blueberry), bear, star, heart, bug (for Nana & Pa Pa's pug named Bug, and for ladybug), water, slide, bubbles, Buba, Joe, baby, eyes, nose, mouth, ears, belly, bee, shoe, shock, bath, cheese (this one surprised me today), nana (for banana not to be confused with Nana), bunny (graduated from bun), hi (very popular when we're out and about, walking into a room or just wanting some attention, bye bye, boots, mouse, bird...I know I'm leaving many more out, but I'm sleepy.

If I ask, 'Mia, what's this?':
paper, rock, rain,

Other words she says (prompted. Mia's been mimicking a lot lately):
out, up, pees (please), no no no, purple, play,

animal sounds:
moooo, baaa, bawk bawk, hoo hoo, roar (different tones for bear, lion or tiger), neigh, ruff, meow (went from mow to full fledged meow),

She also knows that Nana says woohooo! and Pa Pa says 'yes' :)

On a physical note:
Mia LOVES to kick balls, spin in circles, dance, walk up & down stairs or steps all by herself, but holding on the railing, help get dressed, comb her hair, put toys away, stack toys, carries her little baby doll around like a real baby (she's been keeping an eye on Lisa and her new baby), pushes herself around on her little car, she can also pet very gently now. There are several cats on our various walking routes that can vouch for her ;)

this is what happens when

I'm down when I'm supposed to be up. I'm up blogging at 12:30am! I was under the weather a little today (I hope my friends Sarah and Lori will be as understanding as I know they are & take a raincheck for the missed playdate at Casa de Gleinser), but at least Mia's feeling much better. She still has her little rash, but is unfazed by it. Her hair is growing into her eyes...barely, but it is. So, up in a pony tail it went. It looks more like a palm tree than a pony tail, but it's up there :) It rained pretty hard out here this afternoon. We took advantage of it by entertaining Mia with it. She sat on her Daddy's (we were so glad he came home early today) lap for a while, then went to touch it all.

There's a raindrop right over there!

(check out the poor Snapper's red little cheek)


poor Snapper

We had a great time Tuesday at the sprinkler park with Sarah & Isabel and Lori & Livie. Lori was a little late. The Mama got lost out in the backroads of Williamson County...when WILL they update the toll roads on Google, yahoo maps, mapquest....? Mia and I didn't stay very long, she wanted an early nap for some reason. Oh, that reason was made clear when Mia woke up from her nap with a 103 degree fever! I was vigilant about her fluid intake, and the only solid or semi-solid thing she could keep down was yogurt. She sleep pretty much the afternoon away, and went to bed early that night. The poor Snapper threw up in the middle of the night, so while I was caring for her, her sweet Daddy made her bed all fresh. A few light spots formed, but never spread. Rashes are so common with viral fevers. She hasn't had any fever in the last 24 hours, so that's a good thing. We're still keeping a very careful watch on her ears and throat. Her eating has improved, but her stamina...not really.

We just took a walk to the park. I'm glad I pushed the stroller along side Mia just in case she tired. She did. After she found an amazingly wonderful walking stick, she walked about 1/2 a block (a total of one block) and wanted in the stroller. She didn't even want to play at the PARK!!!!! So, I just brought her home, and put her down for her afternoon nap.

Here's a pic of the oh so short walk. Mia in her cute new T-shirt from her Nana and holding her walking stick :)


it's 8pm

and the Snapper is sleeping. Why, you ask? Well, let me tell you a little about a playdate that we hosted this morning.

It was a beautiful morning for a sprinkler, pool fun playdate. We filled up the pools, turned on the sprinkler and let them go at it. Mia hung out with Colton, Jason, Lindsay, Kylie and Mackenzie! Their ages ranged from 2 months all the way to 5 years! They all wore themselves out, so we had many happy Mamas for it, too.

baby Lindsay

Mia & Colton


A Mama's Mia First: An entry from Dada on Father's Day

We woke up this morning at around 8:30am. Mia decided to let Mommy and Daddy sleep, and didn't even bother with her normal 6:00 milk run.

Tanya forced me to stay in bed while she got up. About 15 minutes later, she brought me coffee, the snapper, and a whole lot of daddy related books. While I sat and read to Mia, Tanya sat there looking at me with an expectant look on her face. In true daddy fashion, it took me several minutes to realize that the coffee she just brought me came in the first of my fathers day presents. It was a customized coffee mug with a picture of Mia and me reading a Daddy book. I also got hand-made cards from my girls, and an awesome digital picture frame for my desk at work. Tanya also got me a copy of the first "real" book I ever read, Where the Red Fern Grows, so that I can read it to Mia.

Before I even got out of bed I got a call from the best mother-in-law in the world to wish me a happy fathers day. Last time we were down, she gave me my fathers day present a little early. It was a hand painted piece of artwork of a Daddy and his daughter.

Once we got up, I got another of my fathers day presents (one I got to pick several days in advance). I got eggs on horseback for breakfast. A full t-bone steak with a nice over easy egg on top and hash browns and fruit w/ whipped cream on the side. What a breakfast! We sat and played cards while we ate. Either I had a bit of fathers day luck or Tanya stacked the deck in my favor. Whichever it was, I won big time!

After that, we scrubbed down the snapper and got her ready for a big day. We took the family to Wal-Mart and picked up a new bike so that we can all go for rides when I get home at night. Mia walked through the entire store by herself without a single stroller, cart, or helper. Needless to say, by the time we got home she crashed for a nice two hour nap.

By the time she woke up, we were all packed up and ready to go out to my parents house for fathers day. Mia was energetic and in a great mood. The whole way out it was Nana this and PaPa that. Nana and PaPa had a great time planned. By the time we arrived, the whole family was there...Nana, PaPa, Me-Maw, Uncle Joe, Auntie Melissa and Cousin Gwen. There was plenty of BBQ, beer and pool to go around. How can you not have fun with THAT combination?? Mia got to play on the swing with PaPa and played on the porch with Nana and a little bit of water from the hose for almost an hour. It was an awesome fathers day and we didn't want to leave, but by 8:00 Mia looked like she was going to fall asleep standing up. We said our Goodbye's and headed out.

Mia managed to stay awake for the entire ride home, but not by much. By the time we walked in, she was ready to hit the sack. We ready her a story and put her down. I think she was asleep by the time her head hit the pillow.

Having a day like this every year makes me see just how lucky I am to have such a wonderful family. My loving wife took such great care of me today (like always). While Mia didn't quite know what was going on, she lit up my day with all her smiles. I am truly the luckiest guy in the world!

8:30pm and still going strong

they make beautiful music together

Mama, Dada, Mia & her shoe

proud Dad

Fathers, sons & daughters

all you need is a loving Dada & a water hose

Pa Pa loves his Mia...and her Ron Paul T-shirt, too


Daniel's First Birthday!!!

Daniel is a little boy that Mia met last session at Little Gym (they're in the same summer session class, too). They've become great friends, and so have Melissa (Daniel's mama) and I. Well, yesterday was his one year birthday party!!! It was jungle animal themed from cake to favors. Mia had her first PB&J sandwich. She scarfed it down and chased it with some cake! Needless to say, this would be day two of her sugar high ;)

When we first arrived, we checked out the little wading pool. Mia did more than that...she just walked right in...dress, sneaks and all! After she changed into her swimsuit, she went back out there and her Daddy was the lifeguard, blocking her from the deeper (1 1/2 ft) end. They had a great time playing, and I had a great time watching them play. He really is a super dad.

Before we left, Mia picked out a party favor. They were little animals, and Mia picked out a tiger...I'm sure because they were jungle animals and ducks weren't available, but I do believe that tigers rank pretty high with her, too. On the way home she, obviously tired and full of sugar, kept growling at the tiger and saying 'hi' over and over, to whom, we aren't sure.

After Mia's nap, we took Daddy to the Leander sprinkler park. It was his first time. He was very impressed with the park, and with little Mia. She really does handle herself very well there and knows how to have a great time.

ready to swim...dress, sneaks & all!

Daddy's girls

first PB&J takes Mia by surprise!

Daddy's little mermaid

Daniel has had enough cake...

...Mia concurs

Fun at the pool party

Welcome to Mia's Sugar High


Summer Fun!

Yesterday started off with swim class. Mia LOVES it! She really squirms for me to let her go, but when I do, she sinks, comes up sputtering and pissed. So, she stays in my arms while we go though the circuits until it's her turn to submerge. I think that's her fav part. She's staying at 5 seconds underwater until she's comfy, then will move up to 6. One of her other favorite circuit spots is the pizza delivery. I place rings (pizzas) on the steps of the pool. She reaches in, grabs them, and 'delivers' them into the bucket. It's an exercise to help them fell comfortable putting their faces in the water. Mia was so distracted yesterday, that she stuck her whole head in to get a green ring!

Since Mia was already in her suit, we hit the Leander sprinkler park. It's free, fun and Mia really digs it. One other bonus is that it wears her out! Yay! She played and played for about 45 min, then went to our bag, got her towel out and said 'bye-bye'. If that's not communication, I don't know what is.

After her nap, we went to Ready, Set, Play!. There aren't' too many places for kids to run around out of the heat. I think she's still too little for the playscapes at Chick-fil-a and places like that. The older kids are so fast, they'd probably run her over. I digress, back to RSP. Mia met this little 4 yr old girl, Cindy. They played so well together. Cindy demonstrated to Mia how to fling the balls out of the ball pit. They didn't give up until the pit was empty. (there's video of it below, but it's loud bc of the airblowers, and long bc my mom likes to watch Mia play so I didn't edit it) When Mia tried to climb out of the pit, Cindy really wanted to pick her up, but I don't think Cindy weighs much more than Mia. The second time she tired, I explained that Mia could not only get out by herself, but she prefers it that way ;) The last time we were there, a little girl freaked out at the top of the big slide, so since then, Mia's not wanted to go up it. She'll climb half way, change her mind and then climb back down...not so good when there are other kids behind her. Well, little Miss Cindy climbed up, and called Mia up to join her. Mia went!!! She still wants me to slide down with her, but she has the the biggest smile on her face when we zoom down.

Today was loads of fun, too. First, we hit Keri's first birthday party. Keri is a friend of Mia's from one of our playgroups. There were toys and bunches of kids and cake and balloons and a ball pit... Mia's friend Alex was there, so they kind of hung out a little...as much as a pair that age do. Well, after we all sang to Keri, watched her mama Lisa help he open her gifts, Mia played, I visited and we both had cake, we hit the road...nap time! Mia had a little bit of trouble falling asleep for her nap due to her slight sugar high :)

After her nap, we high tailed it back to Pflugerville to hang out with our pals Lori & Livie (the Bug) and Sarah & Isabel (the Bell). They had fun in the kiddie pool while the mamas sat back with some Arbor Mist and caught up. It really was a nice way to finish the week.

...and tomorrow is Daniel's first birthday swim party! The fun never stops!!

water baby in motion

takin' a little sip

summer fun

Mia & Cindy havin' a ball

a balloon in each hand...it doesn't get much better than that!

Alex & Mia

Mia & Avery in the birthday ball pit

Keri, the birthday girl, says 'enough with the cake, I'm DONE!'

Bell & the Bug

smilin' swimmer

at the water park

playing at Ready, Set, Play! with Cindy (LOOOOONG)


books = happiness

Mia had to hit the gym early today...Little Gym, that is. She woke up just in time to jump into some clothes eat some yogurt and we were outta here. We had a super fun time today. Last week, she wasn't in the best mood bc she had bubbles on her mind, and bubble time isn't till the end....not a fun class. This week, she stood under the shelf that housed the bubbles and said 'bubbles, bubbles...' I reassured her that yes, those were bubbles, yes, she would be playing with them soon, and yes, it was time to tumble. It worked!
After class we walked two doors down to Petco, where we checked out their livestock. She saw bunnies for the first time. She kept pointing and saying, 'bun! bun! bun!'. Then she found the rats that she likes to call 'mou'. Everything rodent like is a mouse, but not the ferrets, they are 'mow' for meow...cats. She wasn't very impressed with the birds or the fish. The buns were a tough act to follow.
When she woke up from her nap, we paid Ms. Jane at the library a visit and signed Mia up for the Summer Reading Program :) Mia and I both get credit when I read books to her. I remember when I was little feeling so much pride when I'd fill up the form with all the books I'd read.
Here are a few snaps of Mia with her loot from the library, and her 'hat' of the moment..a colander, a birthday gift from Lori & Livie.

Mia's newest fashion statement

has her thinkin' cap on

books = happiness


Mia's first clown experience...

...and it went rather well. There was a nice clown at the mall yesterday making balloon animals for charity. Mia really dug him and the great flower he made for her. The clown was so happy that a kid wasn't afraid of him :) After she scored the balloon, she booked it to the car, but the poor balloon didn't make it. Mia wasn't fazed a bit. I mean, she didn't like that she didn't have her balloon flower any more, but she didn't freak out over noise.


play time

Yesterday, Mia and I went over to the Robin Bledsoe Water Playscape in Leander. We were supposed to meet up with a group of Mamas...but other stuff (naps, sniffles...) came up for them. I was a little worried about Mia. She was the youngest by far, but she was fabulous and LOVED the water! The older kids were so nice to her. She played and played and played! There was this cute moment when there were a bunch of older kids sitting in a circle, and Mia just walked up and sat down with them. So cute, but it almost broke my heart. She's growing up way toooooo fast for me. I've also noticed that whatever goodies I pack for lunch or snack, that the grass is always greener. Mia went over to a couple of moms with their kids and begged for some grapes! They were nice, and gave her as much as she wanted...which only happened to be two :)

This afternoon Daryl thought it would be a good idea to go to Ready Set Play! with Mia. We hadn't been in a while, and she had such a fun time the last time. Well, Daddy was right! She had a fabulous time playing in the ball pit, climbing up and shooting down the slides (even the big one!). It wore us all out. I love when he plans things. It's always something we haven't done before or in a long time, and it gets me out of my rut.

Guess what he's doing right now. He's a couple houses down playing poker with some neighbor guys! YAY!!! Daddy's Night Out!!! We probably won't get any pics or video from that...and that's OK :)

**Please keep in mind that these videos may seem boring to the average viewer, but to Grandmas, they're little slices of heaven :)