Thursday, 30 September 2010

3...3...3...

I don't know if you've ever looked at the ticker counter at the top of the page. It tells how many months, weeks and days are left until Liara turns one year old. I only look at it every now and then myself, but today was one of those days. Today the ticker counter says there are three months, three weeks, and three days left. What?!

How is that possible? Where have the last eight months gone? I'm missing a large chunk of time, because you see, there is no way my baby could be that big. As far as I know, I just brought my beautiful baby girl home a few days ago. Is this how fast it always goes by?! If so, I'm going to need to start working on a time machine of some sort to slow down time as much as possible... I'm enjoying it way too much for it to be flying by so quickly.

I can tell you this- we are going to enjoy the heck out of the next 3 months, 3 weeks, and 3 days. They had better cooperate though and SLOW DOWN!

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Need vs. Want


Do I need this? No... not necessarily. But do I want it? YES. This shirt (the original one, not this particular modified one) is the shirt that my father gave me when I was six years old. I slept in this shirt every night until it would no longer stay on my body (probably around 15 or so). My inner child is loving this shirt/dress, simply because it's like the one that my Dad gave me. Inside, I'm screaming I MUST HAVE THIS... but I'm trying to be a good girl and resist. I don't even think it'd fit me anyway. I just want it.

So, if you're going to buy me something for my birthday (in November...) or Christmas- this is high on my wish list. Nudge nudge, wink wink.

If only all dreams came true...


When I was little, my Daddy wrote me letters. They were almost always on yellow note paper and included a doodle of himself. He always called me Sweetheart and told me how much he loved me. He told me about what he was up to and mentioned how much he missed me and looked forward to seeing me at the next holiday. The letters always ended with "see you in my dreams sweetheart".

I cherish those letters. They are kept in a box beside my bed, along with other "Dad" memorabilia... his baseball glove, pictures, the 50 cent piece that he exchanged over and over again with Dado (my grandfather) right before he passed away, his death certificate, etc.

Lately, I've been the one seeing him in MY dreams though. It is so wonderful to be able to see and spend time with my father. I can't tell you how much I miss him on a daily basis. I am constantly thinking about him and wishing that he was here to see Liara. I always am a little sad to wake up and realize that it won't ever happen. Not in this lifetime anyway.

Today's nap time dream was about Liara's first birthday. It was such a fantastic time, and Dad was there, smiling away as usual. He told some of his same stories, and then shared some about when I was a kid... some I remembered, some I didn't. He had bought Liara a smiley face t-shirt to wear to bed, just like the one he had given me as a child. That is also in the box beside the bed... although it's a bit worse for wear. It no longer has a neck and falls off your shoulders, has holes all over it and is torn to almost shreds. I loved that thing though, and wore it every night. I'm going to have to see if I can find Liara one and tell her all about why it's special.

I miss my father. Every day. Here's hoping I continue to see him in my dreams.

Saturday, 18 September 2010

What I live for...


This little girl right here. Liara can absolutely make my day, just by flashing this smile right here. Look at her sweet little teeth, and those adorable cheeks! I adore everything about her, and she makes my heart melt.

Here she is with her very own washcloth, getting ready to help Mommy dust. My least favorite chore has now become one of my favorites, simply because she does it with me. How can you not like dusting when you have a super helper like her?!



And, these two, my sweet little monkeys... are my life. They can make me happy, even when I've had the worst day ever. They can make me smile, when no one else can. They are who I want to see every second of every day, and who I couldn't live without.


I'm so in love with my family. It's funny, because people say that I'm a little over the top sometimes when it comes to my daughter, because I talk about her NON STOP and am constantly raving about how wonderful every little thing about her is... but here's the thing- it's honest. I know some people crave space and time to themselves. I'm not like that. I would rather spend every second of every day with these two people. Do you know what I do in my "spare time" (that phrase is almost laughable by the way... I have none!)? I look through the pictures of Liara, write in her journal or her baby book, or call someone to talk about her... I'm obsessed. But, who can tell me that it's wrong to do that, when it's what makes me happy? Is it wrong to adore your child and cherish every second with them? Does everyone not say to love every bit of it because it flies by? Then why tell me I'm crazy for doing just that? I don't get it.

I think another reason I try to live so in the moment is my crazy fear of dying young. I don't know why I tend to think this way, maybe because of Dad... I dunno. Nic and I were talking about it on the way home from the grocery store last night, and I couldn't help but bust out crying... that's how scared of it I am. I am properly terrified that I'll die before Liara will remember me. I'm afraid that I won't get to do the things that I so long to do with her (like take her to the park and watch her slide down the slide by herself, or swing super high... or have her first boyfriend (EEK!) or get married and have babies of her very own to love). Is that normal? I stay awake panic stricken about it sometimes. I think that's why I keep a journal for her actually... so that at least she'll be able to see in my own handwriting how much I loved her, and how I adored every second I got with her. How morbid is that?! I'm just so in love and I don't want it to ever stop. Ever. I live for every second with my husband and daughter.

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Thankful

I'm normally a pretty positive person. I like to look at the brighter side of things and remember all the things that are going RIGHT as opposed to all the things that have gone horribly wrong. Lately, I feel like I haven't been doing this and have been dwelling on the things that haven't gone according to plan. I'd like to make an effort to stop this, and remember all the things that I have been blessed with... I'm so very thankful for so many things.

I'm thankful for my husband and sweet little girl. My little family means so very much to me and my life would be miserable without them. I'm so thankful to be able to stay at home with Liara and watch her grow... I know that most mothers don't get this opportunity. Sure, things are awfully tight and I may not get to stay home much longer due to finances, but hey, I've had nearly 8 months so far with my beautiful girl and I'm thankful for every second of them! We'll do our best to figure out a way to cut some more corners so that we can continue on the way we're going, as I really do know that no one loves her like I do and can care for her the same way. I need to look at it as an opportunity to be even thriftier and see how low we can get our bills to go! My husband works hard... and I mean that. He goes to work early and comes home late every day, and I'm so appreciative of that. He does his best to provide for our family and he makes sure we have enough to eat, a shelter over our head, and that we have everything that we need. I can't ask for more than that. Well, except that he loves me, and that means so much. We may not have all the money in the world, but we have love love love. That alone is enough to be thankful and happy for.

I'm thankful for our health. There are so many out there with sick children or parents who are unable to play and celebrate their children. I am so very thankful that we are all healthy and thriving. Yeah, we may have some creaky bones or aches and pains every now and then... but we're healthy overall and that's what matters. I hope that we are able to continue to stay that way and be able to fully appreciate all that life has to offer.

I'm thankful for our extended families. Whether it be my in-laws (who are AWESOME and are buying us tickets so that we can come home for Christmas!!!), my family (who have always been supportive of us), or family friends that may as well be considered family. We have an amazing extended family who cares for us and supports us in all of our crazy endeavors. I'm very appreciative of such a great support system and for all the ears lent our way!

I'm thankful for opportunities. How often do you see a couple get married at 21 (or 20 in Nic's case...lol), buy their first house at 23, and then move internationally that same year? We've lived here in the UK for almost three years now, and overall, it's been a good experience. We've made some amazing friends, helped to start a charity that is amazing and helping some people who really need it, and have experienced a whole different culture than what we're used to. We've got to see all of the UK (with the exception of Ireland) and have really been in awe of the beauty. We're ready to come home, but it's been one hell of an experience and I'm thankful for it. It's something I can tell my grandkids about.

There's a lot to be thankful for and plenty to be happy about... I need to focus on that and push those negative thoughts out the door! Happy Hump Day everyone! :)

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Sleep is for Sissies.

Lately, my little love bug has decided that she doesn't need to sleep... at least, not in solid chunks of time. She's only been taking about a 45 minute morning nap, and a hour long afternoon nap (as opposed to two full hours for each), then going to bed at 8:30 only to wake up every hour (sometimes more frequently...) until about midnight. Then, she'll go to sleep for a little longer (perhaps two or three hours at a time) but will stay awake for a hour or so between going back to sleep. Then, at 5:30 or so, she's up and ready to play. Ugh. What happened to my great sleeper?! Was it because I bragged about how good she sleeps? Why did she spoil me so? She had been sleeping a minimum of 8 hours per night since she was 6 weeks old until we got back from our trip to the US. I don't know if it's because of her teeth (which have been bothering her quite a bit lately) or if it's due to the fact that while we were on holiday she slept in the same room (and often the same bed) with us the whole time. I've been bringing her into bed with us after midnight or so (sometimes I can hold off until the 2am waking), but that's only due to the fact that I'm a zombie and keep falling asleep in the rocking chair with her when I'm in there. Then, when I wake up, I'm in a slight panic, as when she wakes up she likes to try to climb things (like her bed rails or my headboard) and I worry about her climbing out of my arms and falling.

I hate to admit it, but I'm a grumpy gus when I don't get enough sleep. I mean, I'm properly grumpy. I think what's helping me to be even grumpier is the fact that I can't get anything done during nap times now because I'm either a) napping with her to try to catch up on some sleep, or b) in a rush since they are much shorter than previously. I don't understand where her energy is coming from... I wish she'd share some of it! We're going on three weeks now of this same cycle, and I'm looking a little worse for wear. Liara, on the other hand, is just a busy little bee climbing and trying to walk with EVERYTHING. She's a champ on pulling herself up to a standing position and staying that way, and now walks herself around all her standing toys/the couch/anyone sitting on the floor while holding onto whatever it is with one hand. She's so big it's scary.

Ok, it's almost time for morning nap (and man, am I going to take it today!) so I'm going to head off of here! G'night... er, I mean Good Morning!

Friday, 10 September 2010

Working Mom?

Some people say that I don't work.

I beg to differ.

My job begins at 6 am every day. No, I don't get dressed up (hell, most of the time I don't get out of my pj's), but I show up every single day bright eyed and bushy tailed. I don't get an hour to get ready, take a shower and have breakfast before I go to work. I sometimes even am required to show up early. I then proceed to feed my daughter breakfast (and occasionally eat some of my own) and keep her occupied while I iron my husband's work clothes so that he may go to his office looking semi professional. We play and watch Mickey Mouse Clubhouse until 9:30, when Liara goes down for her first nap. Occasionally, if the night before has been rough (meaning she got up more than 3 times...) I'll take her nap with her, but most of the time I put her down, and then continue to do some housework. This may include the dishes, laundry, or picking up the house. Her morning nap lasts from 9:30-10:30 ish. We then read for about 30 minutes, and then play some more until about 11:30 (every other day I bathe Liara since her skin can't do every day... so our bath time is this time as well), when I make lunch before Nic comes home from work. I'll also finish off the dishes if there were any left over (usually there are...). While Nic is home for lunch, Liara has her lunch as well. I'll eat my lunch once she's finished eating. After Nic leaves for lunch, I clean up from lunch time and play with Liara for another 20 minutes or so. At 2, it is Liara's afternoon naptime. I usually take this nap with her, and it lasts from 2-4. If I don't take it with her, it's only an hour like the morning nap... she doesn't sleep as well. At 4, I do some more housework (usually laundry and picking up the house again and vacuuming the floor so that Li doesn't eat anything). We then play some more, and if it's nice, go for a walk outside and visit the horses. We start getting ready for dinner time at 6 or so... right about the time that Nic gets home from work. Nic usually watches Li for the 15 minutes or so that it takes to finish up dinner, and then we eat. Liara eats as well. After dinner, we play some more until 8. At 8, we put on Liara's pj's and she and I go upstairs. We read books, she breastfeeds one more time (she still breastfeeds every 2 or so hours throughout the day), and rock and sing in the rocking chair. Then I put her to sleep at about 9. Lately (since we've been back from our trip to the US actually) she hasn't been sleeping well at night. She used to sleep through the night like a champ, but now wakes up usually around 9:30, then again at 10, then again at 11. She normally is pretty easy to get back down to sleep those times, but she'll wake up again at like 12:30 and fight it like crazy, so when she wakes up again at like 2- I'll bring her in to bed with me. Anyway, at 9, I go downstairs, pick up the living room and put all her toys away and spend some time with Nic. I've been working on our stockings recently though, so I work on those until about 11:30 or 12, then go to bed.

That's what I do every day. I don't get Saturdays or Sundays off... I don't get public holidays either. I've done that same thing pretty much every day (with the exception of days we have doctor's appointments or whatever) since Liara was born. It may not bring in a paycheck, but it is tiring. VERY rewarding, but tiring. I'm sick of people telling me that I don't do anything. I do a ton... I keep my house going and I educate my daughter. I am teaching her how to play and what the different colors are. We talk about shapes and read together. We learn about the area around us and we talk about the weather. We interact and learn what to do in different social situations. If I didn't "work", there would be no clean clothes, no clean dishes, the house would be a mess and there would be no food on the table.

So, for those of you who disagree that what I do IS work (though it may be the best job in the world!)... pbthththth. I didn't ask for your opinion!

Thanks for letting me vent.

Monday, 6 September 2010

Mama's Girl :)

Liara said her first word... and it was MAMA! I absolutely love that, and hearing it just makes my heart melt every time! She is saying it a lot now, I'll have to catch it on video... it's so sweet! It amazes me how fast she's growing, and breaks my heart all at the same time. I'm cherishing every second I get with her, but it is all flying by so fast! She's started eating cheerios and it's so fun to watch her use her pincer grasp skills to pick them up and feed herself. She's had some chunks of pear too that she's thoroughly enjoyed. I think I'll try some apricot chunks tonight instead of pureeing them. Geez, she's so big.

I'm working on our family heirloom stockings for Christmas now, we bought all the materials on Saturday and I've cut out the batting and am laying out the materials how I want them before I start sowing. Hopefully, they'll look similar to this: http://www.channel4.com/4homes/design-style/how-to-guides/how-to-make-a-quilted-christmas-stocking-steps-09-12-07_p_7.html when I'm done. I'm using different fabrics of course, mine are green, red, gold and cream. I've decided to go ahead and make four, in case we have another baby (who am I kidding... for when we have another baby!) that way they'll still all match. I have a heirloom stocking already (one my Mom made for me) but it's different and I can't find the materials to make one similar to it for the rest of my little family, so I'll just use that one when I'm at her house. I still love it, and it's still special to me, but I think I want to make all of ours the same (well... the same fabrics and general design, but a little different from each other so they are each special). Wish me luck... I'm starting early in hopes of getting them done in time! I always tend to be really into projects when they first start but then lose interest/dedication, so hopefully because these are for Li and Nic (and future baby A and myself) I'll get them done and stick it through. To be fair though, I started to make Nic one to match the one my mom made me like 6 years ago and it's sitting somewhere in a box in Houston. Lol. I'm going to do these.... they WILL get done! Nag me until they are please! I'll post pictures as I go along... or at least try to remember to!

Thursday, 2 September 2010

Pictures from our trip home!

My sweet girl, trying to offer up one of her stacking cup/block things she got from Aunt Jams :)She was really looking them over and running her fingers over the patterns on them... she's so curious about everything!
She wanted me to stop taking pictures and play with her! She's so super sweet!
Here she is sound asleep after church (and lunch), still in her pretty dress. Thanks Aunt Marsha!
Here's my pretty girl in her pj's before her party... I think her hair may be my color instead of Nic's!
Here's Liara playing with her reflection. It was so cute to watch her wave and smile at herself!Here's Li walking around in the pool... she LOVED the water and was so happy whenever she was in it!
Here's Daddy, Grandpa Tony, Liara and I in the pool at the condo with the alligator.
Here's Liara with her grandparents... We had a great time in Galveston with them.
Here's Liara and her grandad... she was telling how big the fish he caught was. ;)
Here's Liara, Nic and I at the beach in Galveston... post seagull. :/Here's Nic and I with Liara, showing her how to get all sandy!
Liara and her sweet Daddy... She's so silly sometimes!
Liara with her Grandpa Tony... he just LOVED her!
Liara with her Grandma Cris... she was awfully smitten too :)

Here's my beautiful little girl... I can't tell you how much I love her. She loves to play with her feet, it's one of her favorite things to do.Here's my mom, Taylor, Liara and I, Raisa and my sister, Raime.
Here's our newest family portrait that Nic's cousin took for us... I adore this picture.
Here's Nic, Liara and I with the Pikes Place Market pig... I miss Seattle!
Here's the troll under the bridge. It'd been ages since I've seen him!
Here's my Mom and Liara at Volunteer Park in front of one of the pretty flower gardens.
Here's Li with her Daddy in the pool at Volunteer park... she had a great time!
Here's the pool that is at Volunteer Park for the kids to play in. It's about 2 feet in the middle, and like 6 inches at the edges... perfect for kids! It was a great place to have a picnic!
Here's my mom and Liara... she really wanted some of those chips!
Here's my sweet family! From the left, Nic, Liara, Me, Mom, Raisa, Grandaddy, Great, Dax, Raime, Joey and Taylor... Oh, and we can't forget about sweet Sam at the bottom!
Here's (from the left) Dax, Raime, Nic, Taylor, and Joey (plus their loyal dog Sam) enjoying the lovely day at the beach. Raisa is in there too... I think's she's standing behind Nic.
Here's Uncle Joey holding an exhausted Liara... she was OUT!
Here's my Mom (Mamo) and Liara reading The Very Hungry Caterpillar. Liara loves that book.
Here's Liara giving my grandmother (Great) some sugars... they were so cute! They even matched each other, not on purpose of course :) This was Great's 62nd anniversary!
Here's Liara and my beautiful nieces Taylor and Raisa. They really loved playing with her :)


Better late than never...

I have to apologize... I've been horrible and haven't posted about our amazing trip home yet! We had a blast and are now back in the UK (yep, all of us!) and in the swing of things again. Poor Li has had a hard time re-adjusting to the time change coming home, but did awesome on the way over there. She immediately switched to US time without even blinking, and did great... even when we changed time zones again once we were there (from Texas to Washington and then back). It's always been harder to ease into the change here than it is when you go back to the States, so I expected it. The first few nights she would go to sleep at her normal bedtime (9 pm), then she'd wake up at 11 and want to play (and I mean PLAY) until about 1 am or so... who cares if Mommy has jet lag right? We managed though and things are pretty much back to normal, except for the random wakings in the middle of the night (about 2 or 3 times per night for about 15 minutes) that I think are due to her teeth...

Anyway, I'll give you a rundown of our trip!

We left on Friday, the 6th and flew to Houston... Liara did amazing! She wasn't fussy at all and was so perfect on the plane! We had requested a bassinet on the plane (GREAT for babies up to 6 months or so, Liara squeezed in because of her low weight and I lied a little about her height lol). That really came in handy as she took one and a half naps in it and played in it quite a bit. We won't get to use it next time, and it kind of makes me sad... although on the way back she didn't really lay in it hardly at all. We got to Houston and spent the afternoon and evening at Nic's parent's house. They had set up Nic's baby crib up for us and bought a whole new bedding set for it (SO cute and sweet of them!), which was really nice! We went out to eat that night at Central Texas Style BBQ (best place for BBQ in Houston... it's one of President Bush Sr.'s favorite places to go, and I don't blame him! PLUS, they are who catered for our wedding... although we had Cuban food, not BBQ). The McManus family came over to visit (neighbors that have been family friends for a super long time) and came with us to dinner as well, which was nice! Then we came home and went to bed!

Saturday we got Billy's Donuts (I love that place!) and just poked around the house with Nic's family. We got to spend some quality time with Abraham as well (our dog!) which was really great, we've missed him! We mailed off Liara's visa paperwork before we flew out to go to Washington that afternoon. Liara did good again, on both flights (from Houston to Dallas and then from Dallas to Albuquerque and then Seattle) although for the last hour or so, she was pretty ready to get off the plane. I don't blame her... I had had enough myself! On top of that, she got her first tooth on the plane! She was a champ and wasn't even fussy about it! We got there and met my family there and then went to Ihop for some food :) It was great to see them and everyone was so excited! My mom and her friend John went back to the airport to pick up my grandparents while Nic, Li, and I joined my sister and her family on the ride back to their house to start getting everyone ready for bed. We waited up for Great and Grandaddy to get there and then went to bed ourselves.

Sunday was my Grandparent's 62nd Wedding Anniversary! We baked them a cake, and sat around listening to stories about how they met... they still are so sweet about it and remember every detail. I love that my grandmother's response to my grandfather asking her to a movie was "I'd just as soon do that as eat a bug". How is that a positive response?! Lol. It meant yes though, and here they are, 62 years into marriage with four children, eleven grandchildren, and eleven great grandchildren later! The Wurst's also came over to visit and say hi (again, longtime family friends), and Cindy brought these DELICIOUS treats that were so good... I'm going to have to figure out how to make them. As far as I know, it's just rice crispies, butter, chocolate, peanut butter and marshmallows rolled into a ball... but I'll have to ask. Yummy. The guys spent the day working on a new fence for Raime (my sister) so that they can get a new puppy! Liara chose Sunday to start waving hello and goodbye too, so it was a great day all around!

The 9th was spent working on the fence some more and then taking a nice relaxing drive around Lacey and Olympia (the area my sister lives in). We ate lunch at a sidewalk hot dog vendor, which was really yummy too!

The 10th was also spent working on the fence, going back and forth to Home Depot, and running general errands (like going to the bank to reset the pins for our cards, since we hadn't used them in 3 years and had NO idea what they were anymore! Lol).

The 11th was the day that my Grandparent's flew to California and was another hot day (the whole time we were there it was hot and sunny!) so we went to Target to pick up some new clothes for Liara :) and then went to the beach! Nic, Joey (my brother in law), Raisa (my oldest niece, who's 10) and Taylor (my other niece, who's 5) got in the water to cool off while Raime, Mom, Dax (my nephew, who's 2 1/2) and Liara sat on the beach watching. We had bought Liara some really cool netting things (See pictures) that you put fresh fruit and stuff in and Liara absolutely loved them. We brought her some pears and she sat happily and munched the whole time! It was perfect for getting her to enjoy the beach without shoveling sand in her mouth the whole time!

The 12th we spent working on the fence, napping, and having good Mexican food at Puerto Vallerta. It wasn't the best Mexican food by any means, but when you haven't had it in so long, it was good enough! :)

Friday, the 13th, was a busy day! Cris (Nic's mom) called to let us know that Liara's visa had come in... WOW that was fast! I love how efficient they are in the US! We took everyone to Volunteer Park in Seattle (an awesome park with a water pool for the kiddo's to play in and beautiful coy ponds and flower gardens!). We had a picnic lunch there and went for a walk afterwards where we saw a guy sunbathing naked! Lol... Raisa thought it was gross. Haha. We let Liara get in the little pool thing and she had a great time splashing around, as did all the other kids. After that, we went to see the troll under the bridge (another sight in Seattle... it's pretty cool) before heading out to Pikes Place Market. We were pretty bummed when we got there, as they had closed it down for the night for a charity event, but we still got our picture with the pig. :) We ate dinner at Pikes Place Bar and Grill which was really yummy, and then as we were making our way back to the car Nic and I took a walk on the boardwalk to look for the spot where we almost had our first kiss. I say almost because Nic was chicken and was waiting for me to make the first move. It was quite romantic though, and brought back a flood of good memories for the both of us.

The 14th we went to the Snoqualmie River to go swimming again, as it was another super hot day (there's no air conditioning there, they don't normally get 97 degree days like they did while we were there!). It was nice and cool and we had a great time!

The 15th was SUPER HOT... we spent the whole day sitting in front of the fans in the house until it was cool enough to go outside and play in the pool (in the shade!). We then got to play badminton and catch and just enjoy each other's company since we had to leave the next day. We saved re-packing for night time when it was cool... then were amazed at how much extra stuff we had picked up while we were there, including some books from when I was little and a bunch of my childhood memorabilia.

The 16th was spent flying back to Houston (Liara was great again!) and then driving straight to Galveston after dinner with Nic's parents. We were staying at the Hilton in Galveston which was really nice... the pool there was great and we had an awesome view of the beach as well.

The 17th was a pretty fun day... I had thought that Nic had to be in his conference all day but it turns out I was off by a day, so he didn't have to do anything until about 5 pm, so we got to hang out with him and have lunch together with his parents who stayed in his uncle's condo right down the street. Liara got her second tooth (so now she has both her bottom front teeth!) and again, was a champ about it. That night our friend Viktor was supposed to come over to hang out with us, but his car broke down on the highway, so we went to go help him out, spending 2 hours on the side of the highway. That wasn't so fun for Liara, as I wouldn't let her out of her carseat the entire time because I was afraid we'd get hit or something and she wouldn't be strapped in. I know, I'm anal. Oh well.

The 18th, Nic was in his conference from 7-about 5, so I spent the day with his Mom. We swam in the pool at the hotel and then ate lunch at Landry's (mmm, mmm, good!). Then Viktor and his girlfriend Carrie came over to hang out with us later that night. They went for a beach walk with Nic that night while I stayed with Liara since she had gone to bed, so I got to catch up on some sleep.

The 19th, Nic was in his conference again until about 3:30, but once it got out we all went to the beach (Nic, Li and I and Nic's parents). I had the horrible experience of watching my baby be pooped on by a seagull. I nearly lost it and went crazy on those damn birds. It wiped off though, and didn't get in her face or anything... so I guess I should just move on. I'm still mad about it though. Haha. We spent some time at the beach before returning to the condo where Nic's parents were staying to go swimming some more in the pool there. It had a giant alligator in the pool for kids to play on which was pretty cool and one of those big mushroom fountain things. Liara had a good time :). We were supposed to check out of the hotel the next morning, but we decided to go ahead and return to Houston that night, so we checked out early and drove back to Pearland (his parent's live there).

The 20th we relaxed a little in the morning, before getting ready for the party the next day. We set up the big coverings and tables, hooked up the misting machines and giant fan, and I bathed Abraham so he wouldn't be stinky and gave him a little trim so he wouldn't look like a wild dog. :)

The 21st was the party that Nic's parents threw for family and some friends to come meet Liara. It was an ALL DAY affair (I'm meaning from 10 am to 10 pm) and it was HOT! All in all, about 100 people came, which was crazy... but to be expected really, as everyone wanted to see her. I'm just glad they didn't go ALL out and only invited close friends and family. I have to say I'm proud of myself for sharing my baby so much that day, I'm not very good at that. It was really hard letting so many people hold her, but she did great. By about 6 though, she had had enough and pretty much just wanted me or Nic to hold her. I was happy to oblige her... I sure had missed my cuddlebug! It wasn't supposed to be a shower or anything, but people brought gifts anyway and she has enough clothes now to last her the rest of the year! She also got some new toys too which was fun. It did make packing a challenge, but we got everything home and are enjoying all her gifts, so thank you everyone!

Sunday, the 22nd, we went to church with Nic's parents, then went to lunch with one of my very best friends (Jamie... she came to visit us here for my birthday the year before last... I think there's a post about it!) and her boyfriend. She's never really serious about any guy, so it's nice to meet one that she's really comfortable with and has kept around for over a year! Ben was really nice, we enjoyed meeting him too! We were going to go and use some of the gift cards that we were given at the party afterwards, but then ended up having some downtime in the afternoon instead since we were exhausted from the party. Liara thought that downtime would be best put to use by learning how to pull herself up to standing on ANYTHING... and she did a great job.

Let's see... Monday, Liara turned 7 months old. We spent the day with Nic's family again, and then headed over to my other best friend's house (Edith, Angel and their daughter Kamila) to spend some time with them. We ate dinner (yummy chinese!) and just hung out with them and Edith's sister (Emy, David and their son David Paul). It was nice to catch up with them and get some one on one time! That night there was a huge thunderstorm, which was nice... we'd missed them over here! It hailed even!

Tuesday, the 24th, we spent the morning writing thank you notes, packing and getting ready to leave, then we went to lunch with Nic's parent's (Olive Garden for the win!) before leaving for the airport. We flew home, getting back on the 25th. Liara did great on the plane again, but man... none of us want to see another airplane for at least a couple months! We were sad to leave the US but glad to have our own little house back. Liara was excited to see all of her toys again, and her own room (and rocking chair!) and immediately starting REALLY crawling on Thursday. She was glad to be home :)

That's the jist of what we did on our trip home... we crammed in as much as we could! We're talking about making another trip home in December now, for Christmas! I hope it works out, I would love to be home for the holidays!

I've tried to load the pictures like three times now and they won't load... so I'll try and post them in a separate post for you to see!