Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Happy Mother's Day!

So, I have failed at blogging lately. Life has just gotten hectic, busy, and everything in between.

Anyway, I hope all of you moms out there had a great Mother's Day! We spent the day at Popcorn Park Zoo! Charlotte absolutely loved feeding all of the animals popcorn and waving hi. I'm actually surprised she didn't keep all of the popcorn for herself. She was so focused on giving each animal as much as possible and would not put down her box the entire time.

I enjoyed seeing her so excited to see all of the animals. Go figure though, she was obsessed with the ducks walking around the most. She kept trying to catch up with them and hand feed them some popcorn.

Overall, we had a great day. We enjoyed the zoo, lunch, and the beautiful weather all day as a family!

Happy Mother's Day!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Puzzle fun!

Charlotte has really taken to her puzzles lately. She is successful at a few of them, and can complete them with ease. She gets excited when she correctly places a puzzle piece, and appropriately applauds for herself upon her accomplishment. She's modest.

As we are trying to help her learn and recognize the alphabet, she has been getting some practice with her ABC puzzle. As I was doing the dishes one day, I heard Charlotte babbling to herself in the playroom. She was happily playing with her puzzle, successfully removing ALL 26 letters onto the floor. Job well done kiddo. However, as I take a closer listen, I hear "E, F, AAAAAAA." We've got something here! She actually listens to me and the countless versions of the ABC's I sing to her. Score!

You should also know that the number 4 is delicious.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Some catching up to do...

Well, I have been a fail at keeping up with the blog lately, but never fear, I'm back. Charlotte and I have been keeping busy and have been enjoying the warmer weather that has been inching our way.

So let's see. Where are we at?

Age: 17.5 months
Weight: Around 32lbs of baby chunk
Height: 33 inches
New words: Ball, car, tree, bubble, cracker, thank you, horsey
Favorite food: Pasta, blueberries, waffles, crayons
Favorite activites: The Wiggles, eating crayons, playing outside on her slide/roller coaster, The Wiggles, Gymboree classes, The Wiggles.

We have basically just been making sure to get outside as much as possible! We are both loving it! We have taken a trip out to Lancaster, PA with Nana and Charlotte loved shopping her little heart out. Here we are at Kitchen Kettle Village, where she met a horse, jumped in a wagon that wasn't hers, and managed to cause mayhem in the Jams and Jelly store.

With the weather report showing a forecast of days in the 60's and 70's, I can assure you we will continue to enjoy our time outside. We are excited for the beach days, park visits, and picnics outside!

For now, here is a photo catch-up.

Monday, February 13, 2012

My Funny Valentine

I decided to take a few Valentine's Day pictures of Charlotte this past week. Although she did not seem to care for the balloons, they turned out pretty darn cute if I do say so myself. I thought the balloons were going to be exciting to a 17 month old. However, Charlotte saw them as an obstacle and apparently thought they were getting in the way of her photoshoot. She entertained them for all of 3 minutes, and then decided to go prop free the remainder of the shoot.

 "Ok Ok, I will entertain this shortly."

 "Ok Mr. Balloon. I'm all done with you."

 "Now, how do I get this off???"

"It was nice knowing ya! Now, it's time for my close-up!"

And now for some "Just Charlotte" photos!

Special Thanks to Charlotte's Aunt Jamie for being the prop director on set!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Gymboree Fun

Charlotte has been going to Gymboree classes since she was 2.5 months old, and she still has a blast every week when we go. She absolutely LOVES that place. She has so much fun playing on all of the equipment and with all of her friends. Today was our first visit since before our vacation, and she was very happy to be back. It was also nice to get out of the house after being in for so many days.

The classes each have a teacher and some organized activities/songs/developmental aids. However, once the kids start crawling/walking, it more or less turns into a 45min free-for-all.

Charlotte headed right to the back of the room once we were done with the opening song. She just had to hit up the trampoline first for a quick warmup. She needs proper cardio before getting into the vigorous climbing and sliding.

Once she was properly warmed up, she headed to the wedge mats. As she quickly climbed those, she realized she had to take on another to get down. No sweat. All of those months of practice really pay off and allow her record timing of taking on this course.

Next we were off to the rowboat. A little mid-day cruise.

Followed by a wonderful trip down the slide. After the effort it takes to get up to the slide, gliding down is a nice little breather.

And finally, the grand finale. BUBBLES!! Bubbles never fail to be amazing.

Gymboree is always a fun time, filled with climbing, playing, sliding, and bubble fun. An afternoon nap is always required, for baby AND momma.  :)

Monday, January 23, 2012

Let it snow!

Well, the first snowfall of 2012 has graced us with its presence. Luckily, it was only 2 or so inches. I am not a big fan of snow, but a little bit every now and then is OK. Of course, there were pictures of Charlotte enjoying the snow!

She seemed very interested and curious about it. She was also wondering why on Earth she had to wear 40 layers of clothing before going outside. Once she realized how cold it was, I'm sure she understood.

She fell on the snow, and well, what kind of mother would I be if I didn't snap a picture first before helping her up???

"I'm fine guys, but let's go inside. I'm so over this snowy stuff."

Monday, January 16, 2012

When you wish upon a star!

Someone once told me that there is nothing like seeing the Disney experience through your child's eyes. They were right. Seeing Charlotte experience Disney was absolutely amazing and made me truly cherish the time we had as a family on that vacation. It was the absolute best and I wish I could relive that week forever. So many memories that will last a lifetime!

To start off, we left NJ on Friday at 7:15pm. Since this is Charlotte's usual bedtime, we figured we would give it a shot and try to have her sleep through most of the car ride. It worked. Charlotte slept from the driveway until 5am. I was so surprised and happy that she did so well for the bulk of the trip. We stopped right outside of Savannah, GA for breakfast at 6am and chowed down on an awesome Cracker Barrel breakfast. Charlotte was so happy to stretch her legs and move around, so we hung out for about an hour letting her tour the storefront with all of the toys, and then playing in the back of the minivan with some of her toys as well before getting back into the seat.

Here she is, in all of her PJ glory, ready to hit the road again!

The rest of the ride went smoothly, and we arrived in Disney World around noon on Saturday! We stayed at the Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground in on of the cabins. The cabin was awesome and we couldn't be happier with the experience. It was a great choice to allow Charlotte some running room, a full kitchen to cook some meals in, and the great resort options that are available every day.

The first day there we pretty much just washed up, went food shopping, and picked up some dinner outside of Disney. We were tired and not up for any parks or major activities. It was a lazy day. Well, as lazy as a Disney vacation can get. We took Charlotte to the playgrounds that the resort has, and also to the Campfire Sing-A-Long with Chip and Dale! She was not so sure about the characters, but had a blast running around and dancing!

The next day was a big day! We were finally going to get the chance to meet a good friend of mine, Jenna. Jenna and her family are absolutely amazing and are such a beautiful family. Her, her husband Tony, and sweet daughter Natalie are such wonderful people and truly gave us a great Florida welcome! We had such a blast hanging out with all of them at Downtown Disney for the afternoon! I really wish we could have had DAYS to hang out and chat, but I guess that just means we will have to arrange another get-together! I'm VERY ok with that!

After a full day in Disney, Charlotte was pooped. Disney did her in.

Each day we focused on one park, which made it easier to keep Charlotte on some sort of schedule and not overwhelm her. First up, Animal Kingdom! Charlotte loved looking at all of the wildlife and soaking in the Florida sunshine. It was a warm 75 degree day, and we were loving every degree of it!

Park #2 was Epcot. Charlotte passed out as soon as we arrived, so Brian and I toured the countries. It was a beautiful day, so touring the world was fun. Charlotte woke up somewhere near France, so we stopped in the French bakery and enjoyed a treat before hitting up the rest of the world. Charlotte
approved of the bakery. Two chubby thumbs up!

Charlotte also went on two rides at Epcot. She went on the Nemo and Friends ride and good ole Spaceship Earth. Spaceship Earth now has a touchscreen computer in each car, so Charlotte immediately took control of that. You are supposed to press where in the world you come from, and well, she listed us as somewhere in the ocean. I guess NJ wasn't a good enough answer for her. Other than changing her hometown, she had a blast on the rides! She sat down and held on and just took everything in. She was so drawn in by everything in the rides, it was great to see her enjoying it all!

On the way out of Epcot, we spotted Daisy Duck and Stitch. Charlotte was starting to warm up to the characters and even gave Stitch a kiss!

On our way to Park #3, Hollywood Studios (although, it will always be MGM Studios to me). That was the only day we had rain, so we tried to stay inside one way or another. Good thing Minnie and Mickey were there, so we were able to schmooze with them!

Since we got to Hollywood Studios early, Brian and I were able to each jump on a ride ourselves. I chose Tower of Terror. Such a good way to start the morning, no? That woke me up for sure. There was only a 10 min wait, so I couldn't pass up the opportunity. Brian went on his favorite ride, Aerosmith's Rockin' Roller Coaster. Again, another short 10 min wait. Too good of a deal to pass it up! Wee!

Park #4 - The big one! Magic Kingdom!! Our resort has a boat that goes directly to Magic Kingdom, so we took advantage of that to avoid another bus ride. Charlotte had a blast playing on the dock and looking at the water.

Charlotte had a big day at the Magic Kingdom! She went on 4 rides! She went on "It's a Small World," the carousel, "Buzz Lightyear Spin," and The Winnie the Pooh ride. She loved all of them. However, in the Buzz Lightyear ride, she took over the joystick and kept spinning Brian around and around. I blame her for my poor score on that ride.

It was a long week full of lots of adventures. Charlotte seemed to keep up just fine and had a blast doing everything. Well, everything except her bath. Usually she loves bath time. In Disney, she screamed. She absolutely hated it. I have no clue why. That was the only thing that she made a stink about. We would start the water and she would scoot right out of the bathroom running back to the living room. She knew. She knew that bath was for her. Anyways, we got through it each night. Our goal was to not have the stinky kid in Disney.

They last day we just spend the day packing and playing on all of the playgrounds again. She loves slides and swings so much! She could not get enough.

The ride home was just a smooth as the ride there. We started out at 4pm Friday, Charlotte slept from 8pm-5am, and we got home at 10:30am. It was so good to be home and back to our normal routine. We missed Dodger and just being home.

All in all, it was a great trip, and an amazing first family vacation! We are already looking forward to going back next year!