Thursday, May 27, 2010

Make Way for the Box Train!

Sierra is funny. She loves mail and especially when boxes arrive. She doesn't care much about what's inside, she just wants the box. Below are a few photos of Sierra's newest box train loaded full of all her favorite toys.

On the next train departing, Sierra is the driver!

We love you Sierra Grace!

Sweet Sierra...

Sierra was looking so adorable in her green plaid sundress, we thought we'd share a couple photos with you...
Pure happiness!
Thank you for posing for us Sierra. We love you!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Teething & Spanish...

Sierra has about 16 teeth and continues to cut new ones. Her top and bottom lateral inscisors just broke through and caused her a lot of discomfort, but she didn't cry or moan about it one bit.
Instead she chews on her teething rings, her fingers, her entire hand and anything she can find to fit in her mouth.
Above, Sierra is watching her Spanish language video. We're acclimating her to different dialects and languages early so she'll have an easier time learning and annunciating shen she's older.

By the way, since we took these photos, we havent' seen her teething ring anywhere. I'm sure Sierra has a secret hiding place where she keeps her 3 combs, one of our remote controls and a missing telephone - all the things that have mysteriously gone missing in the last month! Hasta la vista, Sierra!

Monday, May 24, 2010

The Summer Heat has Arrived!

Temperatures are in the high 90's, so we set up our backyard swimming pool just beneath the shade of our magnolia tree.
I love watching Sierra and her Daddy play together. He sprays her with water, she giggles and trys to take the toy away from him.

We bring out all the bathtub toys and Sierra has a ball splashing and playing in the cool water.
We love Sierra's beautiful smile. She also loves to show Daddy and I where her belly button is. Below she's touching it and saying, "Button."
When airplanes or birds pass overhead, Sierra is the first to spot them. She points at the sky and says, "Pla". I think she spotted the moon in the photo below.

Since graduating from swim safety class, Sierra loves the water more than she did before. She's a really good kicker and loves to splash.
Sierra takes her lunch break and has a cup of milk.

A big smile for the camera as we end our afternoon in the pool. Sierra says, "Bye-bye!"

Below is a short video of Sierra sounding out all the animal sounds she knows. It's adorable.

Sierra's New Tu Tu...

Question: What walks on her tippy toes, spins like a top and wears a pink tulle skirt?

Answer: Super Ballerina

As soon as Sierra saw the pink frills she was in love with the pink ballerina tu tu our dear friend Pam sent her. When she put it on, Sierra was a star! She would twirl on demand and run around the house on her tippy toes with a big grin on her face.

Dear Pam - you certainly have a gift for choosing the perfect present for a little girl. By the way, the bunny in Sierra's hand in the photos above is the same bunny you sent her for her Baby Shower. Sierra has decided that the bunny has magical powers and must be with her at all times...We bought 2 extras in case we lost one! Thank you!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Sierra is a Swim Graduate!

Sierra is an official ISR safety swim program graduate! Everyday for the past 5 weeks Sierra would go to her classes at the school next door for a 10 minute swim lesson. After our first few visits, Sierra started greeting Cindy with a simple, "Bye-bye" to tell us she was ready to leave.
Cindy was especially fond of my mother bringing Sierra to class since my mom had been through swim classes with 3 children previously - she knew not to show sympathy - which meant less crying during lesson time. I, on the other hand, must have had the look of total heart ache on the side of the pool, promoting Sierra's tears. But, we were all Sierra's biggest fans and always gave many applauses and encouraging words when Sierra completed a task!

Sierra initial crying during her classes showed her defiance. It wasn't as if Sierra was afraid of the water, she just didn't like participating against her will. As the classes went on, Sierra's stubborn nature became more relaxed and on many occasions after class, Sierra would sit on the edge of the pool and kick and splash in the water with a big happy smile on her face.
Over the length of the course, Sierra learned the 1) Rollback to Float Sequence: Orient herself in the water and roll to a back float position to rest and breathe; and the 2) Swim-Float-Swim Sequence: Swim for a short distance, then roll onto a back float position to get a breath, and then turn back over to swim again in search of an exit; 3) Extended Back Float: Sierra maintained a back float position for over 6 minutes fully dressed in layered clothing.

The happiest sight was to see Sierra enjoying the classes. By the 4th week, Sierra would say, "Hi" and wave to Cindy with a smile upon greeting her.

Now that Sierra has graduated, we will continue to practice her newly acquired skills and may indulge in a refresher course or two. Thanks Cindy for all your compassion and training! Congratulations Sierra for working so hard to learn to swim and float!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Sierra's 1st Trip to Universal Studios

This past Saturday we decided to venture to Universal Studios because we learned that kids enter for free until they are 3 years old! With Sierra so excited about the playground down the road from our house, we thought she would be totally enamoured with Seuss Landing at Universal. It's a whole town dedicated to the beloved Dr. Seuss stories and characters. Below are a few photos from our adventure. As you will see, Sierra loved the "Carou-Seuss", but was not very fond of the "Cat in the Hat"! Enjoy.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Sierra Loves her Daddy, Gigi & Books

As you can see, Sierra is her Daddy's girl. She loves running around the house having him try to catch her. She's so fast and still has her cute baby style run, with her hands flailing about and her legs moving as fast as they can on her tippy toes. She also likes to hide behind the dining room curtains, beneath the dining table, behind the rocking chair in her bedroom and in any small crawl space she can find! Once I found her behind her Daddy's computer desk in a space only about 8" wide. Everything she does makes us smile, even when she empties out all her clothes from her drawers in her bedroom - which happens daily!

As you know, every Tuesday and Wednesday, my mother, Gigi, visits our home to take care of Sierra. We love my mother for giving us the wonderful gift of time together. The funny thing is, at the end of each day, my mother thanks ME for letting her visit. It sounds backwards, but I get it. Spending time with Sierra is fun and she loves getting to know her cute little personality and seeing her learn new tasks and impress us with her associations. If she sees Winnie the Pooh, she is quick to find all the other areas in the house where Pooh may be, such as on her shoes, in her toy chest, in her books. She points to each and says, "Pooh", which always makes me smile with pride.

Another favorite thing for Sierra to do is read. She loves her books, and every chance she gets to read, she takes it. To further Sierra's learning, we just invested in several foreign language videos that show pictures and written words, then states the proper pronunciation for each word. Sierra will sit for 45 minutes paying attention to each lesson. It's a wonderful sight to see. Currently, she is reviewing the Spanish video once per day along with her other reading videos.

Here Gigi is reading Sierra the book, The Little Engine that Could," and it has become one of her newest, favorite books. Thanks Mom for reading Sierra all these wonderful books. We love you!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Trying my best to keep up with Sierra...

Sometimes being a step behind your child is too late. I learned this lesson the hard way. We were taking a bath after a messy meal of peanut butter and jelly to clean up. After a big splash drenched me with water, I stepped away from the tub for a split second to wipe the water off my face. In that split second, Sierra reached up, splashed the water with her hands and slipped. With her mouth wide open from laughter, Sierra's head fell straight down, tooth first on the side of the tub. At first I noticed a small chip in the side of the tub, then frantically I checked her mouth and my biggest fear came true. Sierra's front right tooth was chipped!

She was in shock at first, then after about 15 seconds the tears started to flow. I felt like the worst mother on earth. I didn't sleep much, then early Friday morning I found a pediatric dentist, checked our insurance and made an appointment for 10:00am. When the dentist told me there was no permanent damage I felt much better. Thankfully, the chip only occurred on the tip, so it doesn't even look as bad as I originally thought. Now, it adds character and reveals the "adventurer" in her spirit. Sierra is not only the sweet angel we all know and love...she's a fearless daredevil. In an attempt to get Sierra to show me her tooth, I had to make her laugh...this photo was the result.