Mary Ella and I made it to the park one morning this week before it got too hot. I thought she looked so cute in the Razorback tee that Leslie made and Mia's hat. I hate to rush summer away, but we are really looking forward to football season this year. Next time we are in Arkansas we need to stock up on our Razorback gear, because there is NONE of it down here. We're in Ole Miss and Mississippi State country with some Alabama, Auburn, LSU, Georgia, Florida, and Vandy fans thrown in! I do love that we have friends representing most SEC schools. It makes for a fun season and lots of trash talkin'!
My friend, Ann Elise, was in town for a night and a day, so Mary Ella and I drove to Canton to see her and meet baby Michael. He was so sweet! AE and I taught 3rd grade together, and just as we were moving to Little Rock, she moved to Kansas to get married. And then have Michael! I am so happy for her...he was one prayed for baby! It was a short visit, but it was so good to see them. We still love and miss you, Ann Elise!
P.S. I'm adding more pictures that Ann Elise took on her camera the day we met Michael. The one above was just on my iphone. I only wish she would have gotten in one!
This second trimester has flown by! I'm feeling great and getting lots bigger, as you can tell. Seems like I'm way ahead of schedule this time, but I've only gained 7 pounds so far. I have been trying to get to the gym 4 times a week (2 yoga, 2 water aerobics), but it doesn't always happen. My maternity clothes spent most of the past 12 weeks sitting in my closet floor staring at me. I got the bags down a long time ago, but I couldn't bear to put the yucky band pants on yet. I was wearing mostly dresses or stretchy pants at home until we went to the beach. Then I decided it was time to dig out the ol' maternity duds. Oh well! It just means Rhett is growing, and that makes me happy. In fact, it feels like I have a little monster in there. He feels SO big already! Kicking me high and down low. He is very active! But this is the most fun time in pregnancy to me! Not too uncomfortable yet, but able to enjoy feeling my baby move because he's not too crowded yet either. I felt him for the first time at 14 weeks and by 16 weeks Brad could feel him too. We haven't done anything to Rhett's room yet, but I have most of it planned in my head. We have picked out a crib and bedding. I need to find curtains, and I know what rug I want. Still trying to decide on whether we need another glider or not, may just recover ME's. But I really want to keep hers in her room, because I know we will spend a lot of time in there while she plays. I think we may just choose from several old rocking chairs in the family and have some comfy cushions made. My mom has 2 dressers to choose from for a changing table, and I need to paint a couple of pieces of furniture that are in there now and will probably stay: a bench with a lid (for blankets or toys) and maybe a bedside table to go beside the rocker. Just a little glimpse at what is going on inside this head of mine. Add in 2 upcoming birthday parties for ME and thinking about how I will have everything ready for Christmas before Rhett's arrival, and you have a Mama that can't turn if off and go to sleep some nights! I think I need to convince my mom that I am going to need her the whole month of November! After the baby comes of course, but I'm thinking I will be crazy before then too. Already decided the tree is going up right after Halloween, AND I have to convince the family to come here for Thanksgiving this year! Oh boy!
And here is a funny picture that ME will hate one day! She is very good in the waiting rooms at my appointments because she is usually having a snack or playing with stickers or just entertaining the other patients. But it's not easy to keep her contained in the exam room. Brad and I were uptight about it at first and told her not to touch anything (gross), but what are you gonna do?
This week we had a visit from the other Harriman clan, Randy, Lindsay, Reese, Eli, and Hannah came too. They stayed for a few days before traveling on down to Destin for the rest of the week. Wish I was going with them! But we found some fun things to do here, and Mary Ella always loves playing with her cousins!
Sunday we went to the Children's Museum. It was fun for all! This tractor is ME's favorite thing...Daddy enjoyed it too. It was the first time he had been, and I think he expected it to be boring because it is a "museum."
The big boys helping ME move logs.
And working the crane...where are the kids?
Typical Ranjo face
Eli milking the cow.
ME trying to hang upside down like Reese.
Back to the tractor
We promised the boys a trip to Bass Pro if they went to the museum (like they didn't have enough fun). We played in the kid section and tried to keep them awake.
They were pooped!
Monday was an adventure. We got up, got ready, packed a lunch, and drove an hour to Geyser Falls, a water park, in Philadelphia. When we got there it was closed because of the weather. It wasn't raining, but they said there was a flash flood watch. We knew there was a chance of rain, and I could understand if it had been lightning or storming, but there was no flood, and who closes a water park because of a 40% chance of rain? So, we had lunch on a picnic table outside of the water park, packed it up, and headed home. We decided to drive to the Jackson Zoo, which took an hour and a half from where we were. The skies were clear until we got there, and then it started raining. The train was closed, the carousel was closed. Hmmm...we went in anyway. It sprinkled just enough to keep us cool, the animals were out, and we had the place all to ourselves. I think I would have preferred getting rained on at a water park as opposed to a zoo, but at this point we didn't care. And we were in our bathing suits and coverups anyway. After our short excursion to the zoo, I suggested taking the kids to the splash area at the Renaissance since they were all looking forward to getting in the water. Even Mary Ella was expecting "the pool."
I think they enjoyed it as much as anything, and the adults got to sit down and rest and watch. Don't think the water park would have been so relaxing.
And we found that all of the Harriman cousins enjoy squatting down and letting water shoot them in the rear. Ha!
Plus Geyser Falls doesn't have a Maggie Moos! Yum!
Is that a sprinkle? ME was covered in her blue cotton candy ice cream, but I just threw her back in the fountains. Fun times with the cousins!
For four nights in July, Mary Ella experienced her very first Vacation Bible School. Not only was it her first, but it was also a first for the Madison Church of Christ. I am so proud of our little church! What started in November 2005 with a worship service of 60 people in a nasty old elementary school has grown into a strong church family with a full time preacher and youth minister, elders, deacons, children and adult Bible classes, fellowship activities, outreach programs, funded missions, and our very first VBS...all in service to God the Father and the spreading of the gospel of Jesus Christ. We have even moved to a much nicer office space and are currently paying down the debt of our land on Reunion Parkway and working on plans for a beautiful new building. We had 50 children in attendance at VBS, which is great considering our membership is around 150. Sherry and I taught ME's 2 year old class, and she had a blast! She got to listen to Bible stories about Noah, Joseph, Moses, and Daniel, watch skits, make crafts, sing songs, and of course have snack and play time. I think her favorite part was the singing. She even got called up one night to sing and dance to Chicky Chicky. Boy, did she love having an audience! If you've ever been to a Church of Christ VBS you know what song I'm talking about. That's about as wild as is gets in the CoC!
Again, I just decided to get some active monthly pictures of our active girl.
Telling me something very important.
Giving her baby a kiss goodnight.
Time to eat, baby.
She loves to dance, sing, and twirl!
I can't remember what I said, but it ended the photo session.
Baby down, bow down
Mary Ella, I CANNOT believe you are almost 2! It seems like we were just planning and celebrating your 1st birthday! I don't know where the time has gone, but I do know that it has been well-spent and will be treasured forever. I feel so blessed to be able to stay home with you each and every day. Here's what you've been up to:
You cut 2 more teeth on bottom (18 in all). Since they finally came through you have been a happier girl! And you're not waking up to cry in the middle of the night for no apparent reason...I'm sure it was mostly your teeth.
New words/sayings: dream, fast, avocado, happy, fun, dress, bracelet, necklace, drink, no way (I don't know where this came from), why (really, already?), wash hands, head, poo potty, diaper, pizza, I know, I don't know, eyebrow, medicine, watch, Einstein (you watch Little Einsteins), sticky, wash, bath, Rhett, sit, play, seat, glasses, sock, frog, oopie (oopsie), tummy, high, big, tall, ears, my tar (you can pick out our car), money, bank, pig, wash up, ready, froggie, treat, crown, grapes, yahoo, hammer, back, gotcha, phone, rest, throw ball, bucket, shovel, beach, ocean, big pool, sand, sandy, oink, Belle, Sleepy (Sleeping Beauty), and something for Snow White, zebra, giraffe, bird, bed, work, blocks, teeth, neck, puzzles, it's raining (when you hear thunder you say, "it's raining on house"), this, that, oh my, mail, see look, I want some (usually when you want my lip gloss), I want play wit dat (usually you are asking for permission to play in my make-up), I want one too, sticker, Badou, feed baby, change diaper, bottle, dance, lady bug, butterfly, move and stop (you say this when I am in your way...we are working on "excuse me" instead), clap, pat, march, broken, who dat, Daisy Duck, Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Goofy, yogurt, chicken, tots, alligator, chomp chomp, monkey
When I ask you if you want to do something like, go to the pool. You say, "yeah, pool fun!"
You're not picky about what you wear yet, but I'm expecting it any day now. Some days I ask what you want to wear just to hear what you'll say. The first time I did this you said, "shoes on, bow, dress." And more recently you say, "blue dress."
You love to dress up with necklaces, bracelets, and all things girly. You especially love to wear and twirl in dresses.
You get on kicks where you're all about "I wanna poo potty." You have gone pee and poop in the potty at random times, but you usually just want to play on it. You do get a kick out of hearing your toilet play music when you potty, and you love to choose a treat after you go. I thought you might be ready, so I stocked up on all the stuff and tried for a few days this month. But it didn't go so well. You peed on everything but the potty (couch, floor, high chair, and all 7 pairs of your Minnie and Daisy undies). You did poop once, but that's only because I caught you in time. On day 3 of trying we found out we had to go to Fayetteville for a funeral, so I decided to throw in the towel. I think you will be ready soon, and I hope to get it done before Rhett gets here. But if you're not ready, you're not ready.
You are so sweet when you cook during the day. You bring me a piece of pizza or a cupcake and say, "Mama one." And then you go back and get one for Daddy too and say, "Dada one." You also remember to reserve a teacup for him even if he's not home.
You like to pretend it's our birthdays, sing happy birthday, and blow out the candle on your cupcake.
Daddy has created a little money monster. Sometimes you are stingy with your kisses for him, but he started saying that he'd give you a quarter if you gave him a kiss. Of course this worked, and now it's a routine. You refuse, he offers money, then y'all go get it and put it in your piggy bank. Then you kiss the pig. Silly!
You started saying the worst 4 letter, and we couldn't figure out what in the world you were saying. I knew you didn't hear it from us, so I didn't think you were really saying the naughty word, but you would march around and say it over and over. FINALLY, we figured out you were saying frog! We got you to say froggie instead, which sounds SO much better! It would have been terrible if you had said that in public!
You recognize and say almost all of your colors: green, blue, red, pink, yellow, black, white. You also know purple and orange, but may or may not call them by name. Orange must be really hard to say!
You loved the beach! You called the ocean the "big pool" and said you were "sandy, sandy" when you were covered with sand. You also didn't care to walk through the deep sand because you said, "stuck in the sand, wa, wa." Ha!
You love to sing "I Know You" from Sleeping Beauty and "Be Our Guest" from Beauty and the Beast.
You are really into blocks and puzzles. You are very good at fitting different shapes into the correct holes of your wooden cube.
You are also really into playing with your baby dolls. I hope this is a good thing to get you ready for Rhett's arrival. Maybe you will think it's cool when you have a real live baby to take care of. You give your baby a bottle, pat her back to burp her (with sound effects), change her diaper (with help), put her in the high chair to feed her, rock her, put her to bed, and give her a kiss. It is the sweetest thing to watch!
You can gallop!
You are still loving some Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and can sing parts of the song. When we ask what Pluto says you shake your head and say, "yeah yeah" like he does! Your next favorite Disney show is Little Einsteins.
You like to play ball with Daddy. You say, "throw the ball," and then you run to go get it. When you grab it you say "gotcha" and bring it back.
Your favorite book is still Mother Goose, but you also love the frog pop-up book Gigi gave you.
You can keep track of pointing to and counting a few objects on a page.
You are a swimming freak of a baby. You like to swim back and forth to whoever will catch you, swim to the side, swim to the steps, play Humpty Dumpty on the side, jump in. All over and over again. As soon as you come up, you want to go back under the water. Sometimes we have to make you stop, just so you will catch your breath!