Monday, October 30, 2006

Lareaus Love Halloween

Or not. We don't. Meredith didn't even have to be told. She knew. Instinctively.

(Old MacDonald had a farm...)

But we try to be good sports, and eventually Meredith warmed up to her chick costume (actually she got a little overheated--that didn't help matters). She did some rockin' and rompin' at her first Rock N Romp event. These are great events held in backyards around town where "real" bands come and play in a kid-friendly environment. So parents get to hear the live music that they've been missing out on and kids get to go nuts and have a great time. It's a beautiful thing. They had tons of pots and pans for kids to bang on, and little musical instruments as well. I wish I had a picture of the kid on the inflatable sax!

This was Meredith's second experience with live music and she loved it. Especially once we freed her from the costume so that she could express her inner Meridy.

(Photo credits for this blog go to Aunt Gigi Spickler-aren't they gawgeous?)

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Action Shots

Here are some of Meridy's routines. She thought some of her younger friends might want to know what sort of tasks await them in their older babyhood.

First, you've got to work on your walking. This "palms up" sign is one that Mer frequently makes, and (just between you and me) I think it's precious. However, I have no idea what it means. It's definitely a happy thing, so we'll just go with that.

Later in the day, you're probably going to want to do your book/radio routine. It's good for mind and body. First, get your mom to turn the cd player on. Dance a little to get warmed up. Now your routine is going to be as follows: Dance, stack books, read books, dance, etc, etc. I'll show you.

At some point, you're going to want to do the coffee table routine. Every baby has one. First, you'll want to make a few laps around the table (again, warming up is important). Then you'll want to remove the pesky magazines (it's' fun to flip through them while you do that). Next, you're going to want to remove other things that clutter up the table. My mom has this tray, so I always take that off. Put that on the floor. Finally, there may be some coasters. You're going to want to get rid of those too. They go on the floor with the tray. THERE! Nice clear coffee table. Much better.

So there you go, babies. Just leave comments if you have any questions. (Nora, you're just about ready for this stuff!)

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Big Girl

Mer had her one year check up -- a little late. She still just weighs 20 pounds, and I think she was 29 inches long. She's right in the middle of the ranges for her age group. She took her shots like a champ and was generally charming for the doctor (not so much for me while we waited for the doctor -- I was suddenly overwhelmed by the thought of years waiting in those little patient rooms -- what are they, 6x8? Mer was not thrilled.)

Anyway, she really is expanding her repertoire, so I thought I'd share some pics of some of her big girl activities.

She patiently picks her peas and tofu out of the bowl. This is her current favorite meal. This is her patient face.

She has learned to be gentle with Maggie and she loves her so much. Her most frequently used phrase is "Hi, Keee" -- obviously, "Hi, Kitty." This gets used even when Keee is not just generally means she's happy.

She absolutely loves to turn the music on and off, dancing with renewed energy everytime she hits play again.

She wears bows sometimes -- and pouts sometimes.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Batty about Aunts

We need to give some shout outs here on Mer's blog. Sorry the above pic is a bit blurry, but at least it captures the glee Meredith felt when flinging about her new pillows that match her new quilt that Aunt Daryl made her. So beautiful. THANK YOU, you wonderful, talented Aunt Daryl you!

Also pictured is Meredith's "Batty about Austin" onesie, which was a gift from her Tia Sarah, who lives in Austin. Austin is famous for it's bats, for those of you who don't know. Pretty cute for the Halloween season, huh? [editor's note for posterity: Tia means 'aunt' in Spanish, but Sarah is actually my cousin. Cousin, however, doesn't quite cover it or sound as cuddly, so I call her Tia. There, that clears up any confusion for those of you who may care.]

And, finally, we want to thank Auntie Carol for sending the paci that has a soccer ball on it (not pictured). SO cool. We've been trying to only allow the pacifier during naptime, but it's different when it's actually an accessory, right?

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Friday Night Lights

We went to the Booker T. Washington High School football game Friday night to spend some time with Taurean and see Robert march in the band. We went with the Spicklers (who tutor Robert's brother) and some other Streets tutors. It was a great time--and Meredith and Walt decided that there may not be better dancing music than that of a marching band.

Pre-Game: Aunt Gigi cares for both children while I (background) stuff my face.

T helps Meredith walk.
(She doesn't seem to believe that she really CAN do it on her own. Guess Vacation Land really was magic).

I beat T badly in our ping pong game.
(What? You weren't there. I could have. It was close).

Robert takes his marching seriously. As he should, cause that band is seriously cool. Can I just say how proud I am of both my boys? Thanks.

If you haven't been to a high school football game lately, go. I had forgotten how much fun it could be. In one half (couldn't stay for the whole game with kids in tow) we saw several INCREDIBLE plays. And BTW ended up winning by one touchdown in the last 6 seconds of the game to preserve their perfect record. That's good stuff. Beats watching the Cowboys (I say that with love in my heart and I don't want any comments from anyone who doesn't also love the Cowboys, but seriously yall, that Philly game kicked my butt).

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Home from Vacation Land

Gotta keep those vacation vibes lingering as long as possible. Here's a few more good pics.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Walking! (in Vacation Land)

We had a feeling that Meredith might start walking while we were on our journey, and we were right. Here in the land of sandy beaches and carpeted bedrooms, she has gathered the confidence to step out on her own. This picture doesn't do her justice, but we were so busy taking video, we forgot to take a picture.

Speaking of video, we'd love to show it to you, but I can't figure out why my movies become jpgs that can't be uploaded to youtube, so if any tech-head out there wants to explain that to me, I'll post video ASAP.

Anyway, Meredith started walking on October 8th--Happy Birthday to her Papa Sugg!

Thanks to the Spicklers for cheering her on. Now if we can only get her to remember after naps that she really CAN do it on her own!

Friday, October 06, 2006

Vacation Land

In Vacation Land, the road trip is over. But even on the way to Vacation Land, the babies were incredibly good.

In Vacation Land, daddies hang out with daughters for hours on end.

In Vacation Land, babies explore sand for the first time. Vacation Land is pretty perfect, but would be even more so if we could convince Meridy that sand is NOT yummy and never will be. Old habits die hard.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

One Year!

Meredith trying on her new hoodie. Thank you Suggs!

Meredith knows that she likes the tissue paper that comes with presents.

But she's not entirely sure about the presents themselves. (Trust me, she warmed up to this one when she saw the play phone inside. Thank you Cogans--this one is a huge hit!)

This is Mer in her party dress, post sippy-cup encounter. But still, have you ever seen a partier party dress?

Mer got a party at school too -- but the best pictures are of her with her truck. I'm told that Mer is the only only one in her class that has figured out how to ride it. I bet they tell that to all the parents.

Looks like a pretty good life.

When you first find out you're pregnant, you can't imagine what labor will be like. When you give birth, you can't even imagine what the next two days will be like. At no point along the way have I been able to imagine that I would have a one year old. A toddler! But it's true. She's toddling. Just a step here and there...but it's obvious where she's headed with this.

I feel a lot of pressure to wax philosophic about this birthday, but I'm going to keep it simple, because I've never been a big fan of birthdays. So, simply put, there's more Meredith to love every day: more talking, more hugging, more laughing. And it is such a blessing to watch her become whoever it is that she's going to be.

Thank you to everyone who made Meredith's first year, and first birthday, a blessing.