July 30, 2012

Dear Lily (Three Months) and Dear Rose (Thirty Months)

Dear Lily and Dear Rose,

What a wonderful month!  July was full of delightful experiences, lots of love and lots of laughs!  Lily, you are now 13 lbs., 2 oz.  Growing so big and strong!

At the beginning of the month, we traveled to Dubuque, IA to see lots of family.  We stayed at Grandma Jan's house and had a lot of fun all camped out!  Rose, you and I shared a big air mattress together, while Daddy slept in the bed and Lily in her bassinet.  Rose, you would wiggle around at night and put your head on my pillow.  While it was nice to hear you breathe, there were many moments when you would kick me!  Everyone enjoyed seeing you both and spending time with us!

It was incredibly hot and humid during our trip to Iowa, too, so we spent a lot of time indoors.  We did make a trip to the National River Aquarium and Museum, and spent lots of time with Grandpa Barry, Aunt Carolyn, Uncle Chris, Aunt Lisa, and cousin Jake.  Aunt Sarah came for a visit too, and we saw Uncle Joe and Aunt Katie and cousin Lucia before they left to go visit Aunt Katie's parents.

One of the highlights was playing in the "sprinkler" that Grandpa Dewey rigged together - the hose turned upside down, propped up against two bricks and set to a gentle spray.  Rose, you were a little nervous about this at first, but when Dad and I ran through it with you, you became a big fan!  Lily sat with Grandpa Dewey and watched us run through!  The ice cream truck came by and we all had a tasty snack!  Uncle Chris and Aunt Lisa and cousin Jake brought up their inflatable pool and we loved sitting in it, cooling off.  Even Aunt Sarah joined us!

After we came back to Minnesota, the fun continued.  We celebrated Bastille Day with some french food on an outdoor patio; Lily and Mama visited food trucks with our friend Ross; and Rose, Lily, Mama and Aunt Sarah went to a very cool splash pad!

Rose, you had your very first dance class.  You wear a little pink dress with a floaty piece covering your midsection and bottom and big girl ballet shoes.  You love the shoes!  Your first dance class, you were a little unsure of what was going on.  The other girls danced and you carefully observed them.  I am so proud of you for just going and being in the room and trying something new!

We had a play date with Eva, and Elisabeth and Evan, and Grant, too.  We went to story time at the library, and played at a gymnastics gym.  Rose, you were able to try out all of the different elements - you played on the parallel bars, jumped off of a balance bar into the foam pit, and bounced on a trampoline.  We've been busy and have had a ton of fun!

The summer Olympics in London, England started a few days ago and we (well, Daddy and I) are enthralled, as is the rest of the world.  Rose, the Olympics holds your attention for a few minutes and you point to the TV and say "water" and "pool" during swimming, but you would much prefer if we would turn on your beloved Caillou.

Lily, you have begun to laugh hysterically at random things, which is so beautiful!  Rose, you are speaking a lot more and it is wonderful to hear your voice and your observations about the world.  Mama's heart is so full of love and joy with the two of you, it couldn't be any better!

We are looking forward to August now.  More dance classes, a visit from Uncle Luther, Lily's Red Egg and Ginger party, and the state fair!

I love you both very much and look forward to the spending more time with you both!

All my love,

July 2, 2012

Dear Lily (Two Months) and Dear Rose (Twenty-Nineish Months)

Dear Lily and Dear Rose,

Mama here.  I am writing to the two of you because whew! life is busy with the two of you!  I would not change a single thing, except the possibility of more sleep.

I'll start with you, Rose, since it has been a few months since I wrote to you.  You are now a little over twenty-nine months old.  Your world was just turned upside down two months ago, with your sister's arrival.  I have to commend you, though, beautiful daughter, for learning to share your Mama and Dad with her.  In this past month, you have become more loving towards your sister, kissing her, touching her, and wanting to help with caring for her.  We have diapered many of your stuffed animals and the reports from Montessori indicate you are very much into baby play there - feeding, rocking, putting dolls in strollers, diapering, and loving up on the play babies.  You and she will become good friends, I think, in the future, and I truly hope that you will take care of her throughout your lives.

Something else I want to tell you Rose, and I hope you remember for a long time:  we went to an indoor play place and it had all of these fun things to climb on, and slide down, and jump on, and run around in.  You enjoyed being there, and you were a great explorer.  And then you saw the large climbing and exploring tower.  You were interested and excited by it, and as you went up, you were very nervous.  Cautious, you tried climbing over a bridge and the first time, it took you quite a while.  I cheered you on from below.  After that first try, you were more and more brave until finally you were flying over that bridge and scooting down the net slide to see me again!  I was so proud of you.  I love seeing you try new things, testing them, to see if it's something you can do, something you want to do, and once you try it out, you go at it with gusto!  I love that about you, Rose, and I hope you carry this curious and brave spirit with you throughout your entire life.

And now, you, Lily.  Well, two months old!  Tomorrow is your two-month check-up and we anticipate  a good weight gain as you are growing out of your 0-3 month clothes (your newborn outfits are a thing of the distant path!) We realized that you will need to be in larger diapers shortly, too.  In this past month, you were much more alert and awake, taking in the world around you.  You spend more time awake during the day (punctured with lots of naps and eating, of course) and you started to sleep longer stretches (YAY!) at night too; five-six hours is more common and Daddy and I are very grateful for this.  You are able to roll from your tummy to your back during tummy time.  Your eyes are so big, Lily with a gigantic smile to match.  You coo and talk to me during the day too.  You make us all laugh with your squeaks and snorts and toots.   Rose delights you.  You watch your big sister very intently and are fascinated with her.  We love that you are so into your big sister!  You are a great baby and are so easy-going.  Mama is so happy to have you in our lives.

And together now, girls.  June was a wonderful and busy month for us! During the second weekend in June, your cousin Jake came up from Iowa, along with your uncle Chris and aunt Lisa.  Grandpa Barry and aunt Carolyn came up too!  Along with your cousin Lucia, uncle Joe, and aunt Katie, and aunt Sarah we had Farberfest and spent some great time together!  Rose, you and Jake had a fun time together, playing, laughing, and dancing.  We were so happy to see so many family members together.

We also celebrated Father's Day with Daddy too.  We spoiled him with some nice gifts (Rose you made a guitar for him, with your handprints) and had some brunch together.  Later that afternoon, uncle Joe and Daddy went to a movie tougher and then we all had dinner together, with aunt Katie and Lucia too.  It was a nice day.

We've been busy too, with lots of playing and exploring.  We are excited to travel to Iowa in July to see more family and we are making plans for Lily's red egg party in August.  This summer is flying by so quickly and we are so happy to be enjoying our first summer together as the four of us!

All my love,