Saturday, January 30, 2010

My New Life...

As many of you know, I am officially a full-time Mommy and working for Galaxy from home for the next few months. In the short time I have spent with my new schedule, I can already see how many wonderful benefits there are...

I finally get to feed Sierra breakfast in the mornings and dress her for her day instead of driving to the office. I can read books to her and participate in her reading program more regularly during my lunch hour, instead of just on weekends. I get to hold the most beautiful baby in the world and tell her I love her instead of being at work and hearing stories from afar about what's going on. And, if I need a break, Sierra and I can take a brisk walk down the road or just sit outside and feel the warm sun on our faces.

I finally have the freedom to make a lunch date with friends or have a playdate with Sierra. Most of all, I'm looking forward to having a personal life again. With my new schedule, I feel independent, exhilarated and productive without the guilt of having to be away from home for such a large portion of my day.
I feel lucky to have a new outlook and a fresh start on life again. Furthermore, I have the opportunity to start some of my own beloved projects and creating stories and characters for the love of art. If I can manage to spend as much effort and concentration on a project for myself as I have done in the past for Galaxy, I am certain only good things can happen.

I'm sure I am overwhelmed by the newness of my new life & once I realize how much time it takes to care for my daughter full time, I will feel as if there isn't enough time in a day once again, however, for now, my goal is to make it work and have lofty expectations of things to come... Wish me luck!

A Few of Sierra's Favorite Things...

Sierra is a week shy of 13 months and its amazing to see her grow and learn new things. A few of Sierra's favorite things inlcude, being outdoors, kicking balls, running around the yard, swinging upsidedown with Daddy, having tickle fights, playing "catch me if you can," and playing at the park.

It's hard to describe in words or show in still photos how much fun we had at the park, so below is a 2 minute video showing Sierra having fun with the slide. Enjoy!

A Beautiful Day at the Park

A day in the park is always fun. And, it's especially fun when it's a beautiful day outside. Many other families thought the same as we did, as the park was filled with children of all ages.
Sierra still loves to climb and the rock climbing wall is one of her favorite activities.

Although, recently she has discovered how fun slides can be. Watching the other children zoom down the tubes was just the encouragement Sierra needed to take a try for herself.
The first few times, Mommy joined Sierra down the tube. Although Sierra has an independent streak and insisted she try it on her own.

And with great success!

Climbing up the slides became Sierra's favorite activity...and with help from Daddy, she could go up and down for hours!

Feeling proud of herself, Sierra ventures to the big blue slide once again.
Then off to the toy firetruck.
Finally, we took a few pushes on the swing as we came to the end of our day.

As a mini bonus, we have a short video showing Sierra on the kiddy slide with her Daddy...

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Special Thanks to Delaine & Greg!

What a wonderful surprise to receive Christmas presents in January! Our thoughtful cousins from Texas, Delaine & Greg Ulmer, sent a beautifully wrapped surprise for Sierra.
After Sierra's many hours of practicing unwrapping gifts on Christmas day, Sierra was a present unwrapping pro! Upon seeing the sparkly red bag with colorful tissue, she knew exactly what to do next.
Skillfully and delicately, she removed the tissue and found the wrapped gift inside to reveal two wonderful and fun books!
"Toes, Ears, Nose" and "The Best Mouse Cookie" books! Sierra immediately wanted to read each one, so she climbed up on Gigi's lap to start reading.

Sierra loves the flip page books and has another book called "The BellyButton Book" that she has flipped so many times, the flip pages are coming apart - a sign of a truly wonderful book. I'm sure the "Toes, Ears, Nose" book will end up in the same "loved" condition.
Special thanks goes out to Delaine and Greg for being so thoughtful! We miss you and will sing your praises everytime we open each book.

Monday, January 11, 2010

The Soft & Infinite Miracle of T.P.

A while back, I was sitting at work and Victor sent me this image of Sierra...And, then he sent me this one...
The photos made me smile, laugh out loud, and then sigh. Our daughter is exploring the world around her! Oh what fun life can be to discover something soft & fun with an infinte supply - oh the miracle of toilet paper on the roll!

And, after Sierra realized her Daddy was watching her, how could he resist such a smile knowing she was thrilled with her new found discovery! My realization: We are hopelessly wrapped around her little finger!

Our Cozy Sunday Afternoon...

Unfortunately, we did not see snow on Saturday in Orlando as expected. With a light rain on Saturday night, we discovered icicles on our palm trees and frost on the ground when we woke, but no snow nor sleet or hail. Temperatures dropped to tie a record of 26 degrees and we were sure to bundle up to keep warm.With cold weather upon us, we took out our hats and sweaters & Victor brought in the firewood so we could have a cozy Sunday afternoon at home. Sierra had just awoke from her afternoon nap when Daddy brought her into the living room.She was all smiles and cuddles with her Daddy, still clutching her "Baby Bunny" from her nap.
Looking so cute, I couldn't resist snapping a few father-daughter photos.
It's easy to see how much Victor loves his little girl...and how much she loves him!
Daddy made a wonderful fire to keep us warm on this cold Sunday afternoon, and Sierra was mesmerized by its brightness with the flames jumping all around.
Finally, I'll leave you with my favorite image of Victor and Sierra keeping warm by the fire. Speaking from my heart, the relationship between a father and daughter is irreplaceable - no matter how old you are!

Friday, January 8, 2010

Getting Ready for Snow in Orlando?

As you may have seen on the news, it's getting cold everywhere. And, Florida is no exception. We've seen the weather get down as low as 27 degrees in the evening! And, some say, on Saturday morning from 8am to noon, we may see SNOW! So in order to prepare for the cold, we pulled out our snow hats to try them on for size. These are a few photos of our silly, but cute evening...

Sierra rarely will wear a hat, and this particular hat stayed on her head for about 45 minutes! I had to capture it in a photo.
She was even thoughtful enough to bring a nice warm hat for her Daddy.
I love this photo showing how Sierra adores her Daddy. Her smile and gaze say it all!
Sierra and I bundled up in layers to keep warm...hugs always help keep warm too!
This was a great familly photo of the three of us! Sierra perfectly content in the middle.
One last kiss from Mommy to Sierra! We love you baby girl!

Happy New Year 2010!

We hope you all are enjoying the new year! Ours started out having fun at home on New Year's Eve. We are just normal "home-bodies" now that we have a family. We like to stay home, play games, read books to Sierra, and have fun doing silly things.
Sierra is on level 3 of her reading program. Twice a day we have her watch her interactive learning video and we read her word books and flashcards. Sierra already knows about 60 words and daily she surprises us with things and words she has picked up on her own.
Sierra loves reading. She especially likes opening the flashcards herself and turning the pages of her books.
She sits very patiently as we read the words and explain what they are. Then we show her a photo of the word and ask her questions. For example, if she is looking at the word "tiger", we ask her to show us her tiger. With great enthusiasm, she will get up and touch her tiger stuffed animal! Each time she shows us that she understands a word, you can see the excitement in her eyes and it makes us very proud & happy parents!As the main event this New Year's Eve, we decided to all wear Happy New Year hats and take pictures! Morpheus joined in on the fun. Above, he actually looks like he was sipping from the champagne a bit!
Just after midnight, Victor snuck into Sierra's room to take this photo of her sound asleep with her favorite baby-bunny stuffed animal by her side. We are so blessed to have such a good daughter!
From our family to your family, we wish everyone a healthy and happy New Year!