Monday, August 30, 2010

First Day of School 2010

Today was Emerson's first day back at school. She is attending the same school as last year but will be going 3 days a week. When I registered her for 3 classes in the spring I was thinking that it would be super helpful to have 3 mornings a week with just Ashton at home in addition to Emerson getting much needed special attention. Now that his birth is just days away, I am pretty nervous as to how the heck I am going to get out the door by 8:45 am 3 days a week with Emerson AND a newborn! Oh well, too late now:)

Even though she has a new teacher and new class, she was still really excited about going back. Unlike last year, there were no tears at drop off this morning. She just went straight to playing and barely gave me a goodbye. It is bittersweet to see her growing up so much.

When I picked her up this afternoon, she had a lot to say about what they did at school today. She seems to really like her new teacher and has already learned most of her classmates names. She was REALLY fussy when we got home though- I think it is just a readjustment to how stimulating school is as opposed to being with boring mommy all day:)

Here are the only decent pictures I got of her this morning. Barely enough to say that the first day was documented!

Back-to-school was fun for me too. It was great seeing other friends and mommies at drop-off and pick-up and catching up on what everyone did over the summer. While this fall is certain to be crazy with a newborn I do love the routine of school and all that comes with it.


Tuesday, August 24, 2010

My little ballerina

Emerson loves to dance. She has loved music and been a little dancer since before she could walk. Her passion for dancing has continued to grow with each day. Just last week Emerson spent a good 30 minutes twirling around the house saying, "mommy, I just love to dance". It was precious.

Her first dance class could not have started at a more perfect time.

This morning when Emerson woke up, the first thing she said was, "I go to dance class today!". To say that she was thrilled would be an understatement.

As soon as I put her tights and leotard on her she would not stop twirling and dancing. She was just so happy. She kept looking at herself in the mirror saying, "I am such a pretty ballerina".

We got to class and she turned a little shy at first when she realized that mommy was not staying in the class with her. I assured her that I would be right out side the room and would be there to pick her up when class was finished. When she saw the other girls being brave and going with their teacher, she got brave too.

I tried my best to sit at a cafe table with the other parents and enjoy the quiet time, but I could not help but peek in the window several times to see what was happening in there. Most of what they did this first class was practice walking in their tap and ballet shoes and learning the stretching routine. It was still pretty cute though!

When class was finished, the teacher walked them all out the door to a room full of eager mommies. The girls were all beaming with pride and anxious to show off the stickers that they got. Emerson could not stop talking about all the things she learned in class today.

I think this dance class is perfect timing with Ashton coming in a few weeks. This is something that is super special and is just for her. She loves it and I really think it is going to continue to help her to grow and blossom.

Instant twirling in her room seconds after she gets her leotard on.

Showing off in the front yard before we head to class

Trying to get a sweet smile before class. It is already too hot and sunny out.

How cute is this?!?!?! This is before class started when the girls are all lining up and sitting on their designated numbers on the floor.


First Haircut

We finally took Emerson to get her first haircut last week. We have been so lucky in that her hair has grown out just beautifully and we could get away with not having it cut for almost three years. Some kids have hair that grows in backwards- you know, the front grows long and the back does not grow at all. Then other kids have the mullet look- hair in the back grows much faster than it does in the front. Not Emerson, hers has grown in evenly and pretty well proportioned.

Anyways, we really built up the first haircut and how much fun it would be. She really enjoyed it and knew how pretty she looked after it was all finished. In the end, Emy only had about 1.5" taken off the back.

She thought sitting in the fire truck was pretty cool
Getting a fancy style after the cut was all finished. Emerson loved getting mousse put in her hair.
She got two pink sparkle stars put on her cheek when she was all finished.
Avoiding taking a picture with mommy. She had fun, but is still a two-year-old after-all.


Sunday, August 22, 2010

Summer Fun

The last week of summer is here. We have lots of fun things planned this week and then next week it is back to school! I can't believe it is already back to school time (mainly because that means we are days away from having another baby!) Even though Emerson has really enjoyed this summer and the free time, I think she is super excited to go back to school. She will have a new teacher and lots of new friends to meet.

Daddy braved the heat on Saturday and took Emerson on the Forest Park Train. They went on the first ride of the morning. Emy loves the train!

Having a popcorn snack on the train ride is a "must", even if it is 9:30 in the morning.

And because it has been all summer and I have not posted any swimming pictures, here are some of Emy swimming with daddy and granmom last week.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Keeping Cool

Playing outside only happens after 7pm because it has been so unbelievably hot lately. We are talking heat indexes between 102 and 110! Despite the heat, Emerson still loves to play outside.

Shooting bubbles at mommy.

Airplane! (Notice the Cinderella sticker in the middle of her shirt!)

Finally, stripping down to enjoy some cool water. A must in this heat!

Hope you are keeping cool!


Saturday, August 14, 2010

There is a dog in my bath!


Monday, August 9, 2010

Things are changing

Emerson, you are such a big girl now. I cannot even fathom how you got to be so grown up. We had a big summer! You transitioned to a big girl bed, became potty trained, gave up your baba and matured so much. The best thing is that you loved every single step and change. You love that you are becoming a big girl too.

You are so excited to become a big sister. You are always talking about things that you are going to teach Ashton. When you see a newborn baby you instantly swoon. You are just completely in love with babies and I know you will adore your brother.

While this summer was big, this fall will be even bigger. It holds such treats as starting dance class, starting school 3 days a week, a 3rd birthday and of course, welcoming a new baby into our home. I certainly hope you love all the transitions that are to come as much as you have loved this summer.

This summer has been really challenging for mommy but looking back, it has been really sweet and I don't think I would have changed a thing. While we spent *a little* too much time in front of the tv because of the baby in mommy's tummy, we got lots of snuggle time together! I definitely wouldn't change that.
This fall is certain to be chaotic and fast paced and I hope that when things get crazy we can both remember the special mommy and Emy time we had this summer.
I promise that once we adjust to life as a family of four I will carve out special girls-only time for us. I know how much you have grown to appreciate and love all things girly, especially when you get to do them with mommy. We will still do all those things when baby Ashton comes, I promise.

Emerson, mommy and daddy love you so much. You bring us more joy than we can even comprehend. Don't you ever forget that you were the first precious angel in our lives.


Sunday, August 8, 2010

Wishful thinking

I washed a bunch of tiny newborn things.

I set out going home outfits and have started to think about what to pack in the diaper bag for the hospital.

I cannot wait to put these tiny clothes on our little guy. Just wishful thinking that it will be soon!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Another big milestone

Emerson still takes a pacifier (baba) at naptime and night. It stays in her bed and is really only a sleep soother. We have known that it would need to go away for some time now. We started talking to Emerson about the baba fairy about a month ago. We told her that when she was ready, this special fairy would come and take her baba's away and leave her a prize when she successfully slept without it.

Emerson (who loves all things tinkerbelle and princess) loved the idea of a fairy coming to visit and leave her prizes. From the moment we started talking about this special occassion she has told us that she was ready to give up her baba's. Now, the problem with this was that she would generally tell us this while there was a baba in her mouth- clearly not getting the fact that they would no longer be available- ever.

So, we waited and talked about it and waited and talked. I was really in no hurry because I knew it would happen on its own. Well, we went to the dentist yesterday and he did remind us to do it sooner than later so that her tiny overbite would correct itself. He talked to Emerson about the baba fairy too and really told her how exciting is was and asked her what prizes she wanted the fairy to bring her.

Let me back up a little here. A couple weeks ago while at Walmart, I took Emerson down the toy aisle and told her to pick out some things that she might like from the baba fairy. I promised her that I would pass on her requests to the fairy. Emy was all about the princess stuff...dolls, dress up stuff, etc. Not surprising. The favorite thing she picked out was this Cinderella doll that has a special necklace. You push on the necklace and Cinderella sings you a song. The. same. song. every. time. I am thinking to myself, "okay, so she wants a princess. Fine, but there is no way I am buying a doll that sings the same thing over and over!"

Since that day at Walmart, every person who has talked to Emerson about the baba fairy has asked her what prize she wants. And every. single. time. Emerson has responded with "singing cinderella". Great, my two-year old has a perfect memory and her mind made up.

Fast forward back to yesterday. We came home from the dentist and went along with things business as usual. No intentions of the fairy coming to visit yet. I am sitting in bed with Emerson, reading her stories before naptime and her baba gets knocked down into a crevice behind her bed that 34-week pregnant mommy cannot reach. Uh oh. Emerson looks at me in terror. I calmly tell her that I can't reach her baba and that this would be a great time to practice sleeping without it for the baba fairy. Emerson actually buys it. There are no tears.

She took a little longer than normal to fall asleep at naptime, but she did it! And slept her normal 3 hours! I was so pumped and proud at the fact that there were no tears. When Steve got home from work we decided that we should run with this victory and the baba fairy should come last night.

All is fine and dandy except that I do not have singing cinderella in my posession. I take tinkerbelle with me to Walmart to return it to get this crazy doll that our child has her heart set on. I wait in the ridiculously long Walmart return line. The return is done and I head to the princess toy aisle. I literally freeze in my tracks. NOOOOOOO! I look down the aisle and it is 70% empty! Turns out they had just done inventory on this aisle and had not put everything back yet. There are no singing princesses to be found. I panic.

In my panic, I grab two replacements. Two is better than one right? I grab a plain Cinderella and a Sleeping Beauty that goes in the bathtub.

Last night before bedtime, Emerson wrote the baba fairy a note and we put it on a plate with her baba and come cookies. We leave them out for the baba fairy. At bedtime, there are no tears and Emerson is excited to go to sleep like a big girl. She does great and sleeps all night without a peep.

Emerson woke up this morning extremely cheerful. I went it to get her and the first thing she does is jump up and say "I did it! I slept with no baba! Did the baba fairy come?". Ya'll, it was precious to see how excited she was. I told her the fairy did come and she runs out of bed. She goes to the table to check out her prizes.

The first thing she does is grab Cinderella. She looks at her and then me and says "Does she sing?". Oh man! You cannot fool a 2 year old!

She quickly got over it and is in love with her new dolls and princess music player. She played for 2 hours this morning by herself with her new things. It was a sweet reward for both of us!


Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Photo Editing

So, I have a confession to make. I have a wonderful camera and photoshop elements editing software and I barely know how to use either of them. I have really been putting some extra time and practice into learning both a little better before Ashton comes. I have seriously high hopes for getting some great shots of Ashton and Emerson together.

Anyways, I wanted to share something awesome that I found. If you have photoshop or elements or lightroom, you have to check out this blog. There are tons of free editing actions that you can download. What is an editing action? Basically someone else has gone through all the steps of editing a photograph in a certain way and they save the steps into one action. When you download the action, instead of having to go through all the steps to edit, you just have to select the action and it makes all the changes for you. It rocks!

See for yourself. The top picture is the original photo. All those that follow are edited using different actions that I downloaded.


This one brightens the eyes.

I *think* this is my current favorite. At least I love how it made this particular shot look.

This site also has lots of great tips and tricks for your blog and other goodies. You should definitely check it out!