Thursday, July 31, 2008

The Butterfly Project, Day 2

The caterpillars are definitely bigger, they would have to be with the amount of food they have consumed! The food source at the bottom of the cup looked like a half inch of smooth peanut butter then they arrived. They have consumed about half of that in the last 24 hours, eating straight through to the bottom of the cup in multiple spots.

Pizza Party

Although we have been having a great summer as a family, it has been busy and Lilypad Princess has really missed spending time with her friends. Today we were able to get three-fourths of the playgroup together for a pizza/pool party (well, the toddler version of it anyway.)
making pizza
Buby, Barefoot Princess, and Lilypad Princess jumped right back into play together, with LP and BP immediately getting into the dress up trunk. After a little play, it was time for lunch. The kids made their own individual pizzas, spreading the sauce across the dough and adding some cheese, mushrooms and peppers. The did a great job on them.
adding the toppings
Once lunch was over, we headed out to the backyard for a little pool and swing time. It was a hot day, but I think that Barefoot Baby enjoyed the pools more than the other kids. Then it was naptime. All the kids were pretty tired, and Lilypad Princess fell asleep before I even got back in the house from saying goodbye. She was so happy to see her friends, she has talked about constantly since waking up from the nap.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The Butterfly Project, Day 1

Lilypad Princess loves butterflies. She loves to go on butterfly hunts with her daddy, always wanting to let them out about 10 minutes later so they can go home to their mommies. Lilypad Dad and I thought she would enjoy watching a caterpillar turn into a butterfly since she already knows the story of metamorphosis. We purchased a butterfly habitat that came with a coupon for 5 Painted Lady caterpillars, which were delivered today. Lilypad Princess has not stopped watching her caterpillars, she even insisted on bringing them up to her bedroom at bedtime.

The caterpillars come in a plastic cup with a lid and lots of food on the bottom. We couldn't believe how active they were today, and how much they ate! They are noticeably bigger tonight that they were this afternoon. And there is already a large amount of webbing around the cup. I should have taken the picture earlier today when the cup was clearer, but I didn't realize just how busy they would be in less than 12 hours.

Butterfly project
painted lady butterfly image from here

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Another Great Break

Balloon Flower

We're back, happy to be home, but already missing the beach. Here are some of the highlights of the past 10 days, mixed in with fun in the sun and sand at the beach, the wading pool, walks, the park, and relaxing in the yard.

Blueberry picking
Steam Train & Riverboat rides
Children's Museum and playdough class
Movie on the beach (well, just popcorn on the beach since the movie got rained out)
Jazz concert at our favorite winery
Fish Tales, Tugs, and Sails Fest

Friday, July 18, 2008

The Beach Then and Now

Since we are heading back to the beach again this week I thought I'd post a then and now comparison.

2007 Beach

Building a sandcastle


Magic Puzzles

Lilypad Princess has a new favorite activity, puzzles. She has had one for a while that she didn't show much interest in until recently, but now it's all she wants to do. I had another one put away that I finally brought out, she had it figured out in about 5 minutes.

I think I'm going to keep an eye out for this one next, I know she'd love the animals.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Where Did My Baby Go?

Over the last two weeks my baby has turned into such a big girl. I feel like I blinked and almost all remnants of my baby disappeared. All that I have left is the last "nurt" session before bed, and even that is getting shorter and shorter by the night.

Potty training
We are now up to 9 days with no accidents. Diapers are only worn at bedtime (and we've had 2 dry mornings), even naptime is in big girl underwear. We made the 2 hour trip to and from Grandpa's this weekend without any problem and she even used the big toilet in Trader Joe's while we were shopping. She doesn't even need reminders from me anymore. I guess she was really just waiting for the right potty, and the pink one was it!

Big Girl Bed
We had a few issues with the big girl bed the first night. She got up and called us from the top of the stairs a few times, then we heard her playing with her toys. It probably took about an hour to finally get her to sleep. I was starting to regret taking the crib out of her room, especially when she fell out of the bed at 3am. But she has no problems since. She has continued her naps, and goes right to sleep without getting up (although she always tried to get me to lay down with her first). And she hasn't fallen out since the first night.

A few pictures from her first night in the new bed.

Showing us how she will sleep
Pretending to sleep

Tucking herself in
Tucking herself in
We were sold the wrong rails with the bed, but didn't discover it until we set it up and it's too late to take it back. We're going to have to paint the wood rails white. Also, the box spring is on the floor instead of on the slats and mattress on top of that so that it isn't too high off the floor.

It didn't take her very long to start jumping on the bed.
Jumping on the bed

The Crossman Tongue

She is definitely a Crossman girl!

The Crossman Tongue

Fun in the Sun

A few pictures from our vacation at the beach.


Building a sandcastle

Building Sandcastles

Monday, July 14, 2008



The Lilypad is a little emptier and much sadder tonight. Amelia, our chinchilla, passed away overnight. She is going to be very missed.

Amelia has been with me since my senior year of college. She survived many Thursday night rugby lineouts in my room, then moved with me to my first apartment, my condo, and finally to the Lilypad. She was afraid of everyone and everything when she first moved in with me, but soon loved standing on my shoulder, chewing on my hair while I studied. She and Sydney always got along fine, and she quickly taught Forster his place when he tried climbing her cage. Amelia loved Lilypad Princess, LP liked to share her treats with Amelia and Amelia loved when LP scratched behind her ears. Dried fruits and veggies were her favorites, especially her dried carrots from Nana and PopPop, but she also enjoyed any sort of cracker, pretzel, bread or nut. She also liked to chew the windowsills, hot tub surround, furniture, and anything else made of wood.

Amelia, we love you and miss you.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Big Girl Bed

First time in her new bed
Tonight is her first night in the big girl bed. We went out and bought a mattress today, then Lilypad Princess and I went out to get her new sheets and a blanket. She chose the pink and white polkadot, jersey knit sheets over butterflies, flowers, and even princesses. More photos tomorrow, but for now I'm off to bed too!


Woke up this morning to the sound of a door opening. Then quietly closing.

Then the loud tiptoe of a toddler. Down the hall. Down the stairs.

Then quiet. Too quiet.

Head down the stairs, no one in the living room.

"Hi Mommy!" from the kitchen.

"I don't want to go to bed. I want a popsicle so I get one from the fridge."

Lilypad Princess smiles at me with pink lips and waves the popsicle at me. I guess it's time for the big girl bed now.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Fun with Friends

Lilypad Princess has a couple of friends down at the beach. Their family owns the cottage next to PopPop's and they are often there on the weekends. During our last trip down, Lilypad Dad took a day to help roof a cover over their patio. While the dads worked, the kids had a great time running around the yard and playing in the pool.

Slash you!


Let's Go Fly A Kite

One night on our vacation Lilypad Dad took Lilypad Princess down to the beach to fly their new kite while I got dinner ready. I grabbed the camera and headed down after a few minutes to check on their progress.

I watched the fog rolling in off the ocean as a I walked down, I couldn't believe how foggy it had gotten in only about 30 minutes.

Can a kite fly in the fog

Lilypad Princess tried to help get the kite in the air, she enjoyed running with the string for a few minutes (these photos have been edited a little to make them easier to see, the fog was really getting thick.)

Let's go fly a kite


Flying a kite

They were able to get the kite up in the air, but it wouldn't go any higher than this and it didn't stay up for more than a couple of minutes at a time.

It's getting there

Lilypad Princess soon decided that the big hole someone dug in the sand was much more interesting than the kite.

Enough of this

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Summer Treats

fruity popsicles
Originally uploaded by aiyah

Lilypad Princess and I have established a new nightly routine thanks to Nana. Each night when I would come home from the CPST course, LP and Nana would be waiting for me on the front steps. It was so nice to see them waiting there for me as I pulled up, and we ended up spending time sitting out there catching up on the day.

Now LP and I have made this a part of our routine. After dinner we take homemade popsicles out on the front step, watch the birds heading home for the night, talk about where the planes flying over us are going, and discuss our day. It has become my favorite part of the day.

We are currently working on a batch of watermelon popsicles that Lilypad Princess made herself. She dug out the middle of a seedless watermelon and filled the mini food processor. I put the top on for her, and she held the button down until it was liquid. They are a little too sweet for my taste, I think next time we will try adding a little orange juice to the watermelon to cut down on the sweetness.

Homemade Popsicles

Here are some other popsicles that I would like to try making, I think I would enjoy having one of these with Lilypad Princess.

We made mango popsicles when Alessandro came for dinner, and he really seemed to enjoy them. I didn't get a chance to try it, LP took the popsicle mold out of the freezer and it melted before I got to try one. But I will make them again, I just used frozen mango chunks from Trader Joe's, a little water, and liquified it in the food processor.

I found these recipes here, I think I'm going to start with the strawberry-orange-mint ones.

Strawberry Orange Mint Popsicles - 1 pound of fresh strawberries, 1 cup orange juice, a few sprigs of mint

Pineapple Cinnamon Popsicles - 3 cups of pineapple chunks, 1/2 cup of fresh orange juice, 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon

Honeydew Basil Popsicles - 4 cups of honeydew melon cubes, 1/2 cup frozen lemonade (or squeeze fresh lemons and add water on your own), 1/2 cup chopped basil leaves

Blueberry Apple Popsicles - 3 cups of blueberries, 2 cups of apple juice

Potty Update

2 days - big girl underwear all day, including the car, shopping, and nap.

No Accidents!

Lilypad Princess is so proud of her success, she's going without even telling anyone now, emptying the potty herself, and was very upset when I tried to put a diaper on for naptime yesterday. She told me that she isn't a baby anymore. So we picked up some of the thicker, training underwear (thanks for the tip Allison) to use for naptime and in the car. We are down to diapers only for bedtime.

Monday, July 7, 2008

A Path to the Treasure

Before leaving for the beach, we started using a potty chart with Lilypad Princess to encourage the potty training process. I printed out a chart I found online and let LP color it in. Every time she successfully used the potty she would get to put a sticker on one of the stars, leading the dolphin down the path to the treasure chest.

While we were at the beach, Lilypad Princess had a potty breakthrough. She started using the potty on her own without any suggestions, stopping her play, taking off her diaper or underwear and sitting on the potty all by herself. Before the week was even over, LP had completed her potty chart. We took her to the local Dollar Store and told her that she could choose anything she wanted as her treasure. We spent about 45 minutes wandering the store while LP contemplated all the wonderful treasures. For a while I thought it was going to be a little plastic dinosaur that roared, then that was replaced with a pink toilet brush (she has an obsession with them, and this one was pink!).

She ended up taking us very literally and chose a treasure chest. It is a small, unfinished jewelry box that is shaped like a treasure chest that we filled with a necklace, bracelet, and big, blue, flashy ring. LP was so proud of herself that she showed her potty chart to the people in the store and told them that she used the potty like a big girl. The woman at the store was so excited for her that she gave her a bag of gold and silver coins to fill her treasure chest with as well.

Treasure Chest

I Never Want To Forget

The right thumb in the mouth. The left thumb wrapped around the right fingers. Bear tucked in the left hand while the right hand fingers and left thumb rub his arm.

The soft breathing, flickering eyelids, occasional sucking sound of the thumb.

Watching my little girl sleep and seeing a little baby again.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

4th of July and Yankees Baseball

4th of July and Baseball

We spent the Fourth of July at Yankee Stadium taking in Lilypad Princess' first baseball game. Because of the split baseball loyalties in the Lilypad, it made sense that LP's first game would be one of the biggest rivalries in sports - the Yankees and the Red Sox. Jumpin' J and his parents came with us for J's first trip to Yankee Stadium as well, although not his first baseball game.

Her First Yankees Game

We had amazing seats in Monument Park, right on the field level, in front of the visiting team's bullpen. These seats are great for a 1 and 2 year old because there is plenty of room for them to walk around and play when they get tired of sitting.

I can see, can you?

Lilypad Princess quickly figured out what is important at a baseball game - the food. She started off the game with a giant pretzel, moved on to a hot dog, then some lemonade, and finished off the day by sharing Cracker Jacks with the father and son sitting next to us.

First baseball pretzel

Around the 4th inning she decided it was time for a little break and fell asleep on Lilypad Dad's lap for 30-40 minutes and woke up refreshed and ready to cheer for the Yankees again.

Just a little nap

The game stopped for a while due to a rain delay. Lilypad Princess wasn't too happy when the rain started and got her new hat all wet, but quickly decided that rain delays could be lots of fun. We stayed in the Monument Park area even after everyone else cleared out and she ran up and down the length of the seats splashing in the puddles. She made friends with the police officers and security at the bullpen gates and one of them gave her a ball used by the Yankees.

Not happy about the rain on her new hat

Rain Delay

My Ball Momma!

Her first baseball

While she was running around, she slipped in one of the puddles and fell. She wasn't hurt but she did scare herself and started crying. A couple of the Red Sox pitchers in the bullpen behind us waved to her to try to make her smile (the two sitting). After the game was over and I was throwing out the trash, one of the pitchers brought a couple of balls over to a security guard and told him to bring it over to the little Yankee fan. The security guard gave LP her second ball of the game and one to Jumpin' J as well.

The Visitors bullpen behind our seats

Although Lilypad Princess and I were disappointed with the outcome of the game, it was a great introduction to baseball and Yankee Stadium for LP. I really wanted to make sure that we got her to the Stadium this year since it is the last year (there were only 36 regular season home games left after ours) and it is such a special place to Lilypad Dad and I.

Daddy and Daughter already at odds over baseball

And We're Back

It's been a long 10 days, I have alot to catch up on! Lilypad Dad was on vacation, so we headed off to the beach. We spent 6 days together at the beach, taking walks, relaxing, and potty training. Jumpin J and his parents came to visit for the last few days, and yesterday we took both kids for their first game at Yankee Stadium before heading home.

Unfortunately, Lilypad Princess came down with a nasty virus today so she and I spent most of the day cuddling on the couch. I'll try to get caught up on my posts over the next couple of days if she's feeling better.