Tuesday, September 16, 2014

StL Summer Wrap Up

We packed Summer 2014 full of around town activities. The reasons abound! The weather was gorgeous allll summer long. Mike traveled more than his normal this summer, so I tried to incorporate activities both to keep days fun and to wear them out! When Mike was in town, we were out doing fun things, too... trying to enjoy his time with us!
Botanical Gardens' kid area is a must.

... but it's a must with 1 parent per 1 mobile child. 

Yay for water play! (Her favorite!)

Tell me about it, stud. He looks like John Lennon in Millie's sun glasses!
Love that Chihully glass, too!

His agility is improving by leaps and bounds!

Watering seeds in a miniature garden!

Maybe she'll have a green thumb?
We walked to the Japanese garden to feed the big Koi fish, but the machine was out of food. So we (tried) to take pictures instead.

One weekend we traveled to Brown County Indiana to have a family reunion with Papa Wade's  side of the family. On the right side of the photo is the family of Dave's sister Ruth and her husband Glenn. They have two daughters, Emily & Hilary, each married with one child. There was a year when four of Great-Granny and Grandpa Wade's grandchildren had a baby. Dec 2010 (Colin & Owen), July 2011 (Eliza), Oct 2011 (Ava). Carson and Livi came before that busy time, and Millie obviously later. It's fun to have kids similar in age. Owen and Colin loved playing cars!
One morning, Owen got to ride in a boat with daddy and papa. He said this was the best!
We spent lots of time perfecting the tricycle riding.

Birdseye View of the zoo atop Uncle Ryan's shoulders. That's the best place to be!

Ice Cream Truck Treats

Splash Pad Fun with Eden Merrill.

The occasional pool time.. I had a hard time with the 2 of them by myself still this summer.
Maybe next year?

Children's Zoo. (Special Treat!)

I was absolutely thrilled to meet these 2 little loves, Louis (L) and Calvin (R). They are the twin boys of two of my dear friends from college, Nathan and Veronica Shore. We got a quick visit with them when they were in town from Minneapolis.

Millie is showing off her 'solid' food.

Day trip to Co,Mo. Just love all that's wrapped up in this pic!

Zoo train.

Summa time and the livin is easy!

Little firecracker on the 4th of July!

Our July 4th was awesome! We got to spend the day as (whole) families with the Francis clan. This has never before happened, and may never again! Jeff Francis (golf course extraordinaire) actually got a July 4th off (his first ever,,,maybe?) and he was willing to come hiking and playing with us Wades  (Mike was actually in town too!)
We played and hiked, and ate, and played soccer. Pictured above: Nathan (2), Tyler (4), and O (3). Owen looooooves these Francis boys. Every time we see them he talks about them non-stop for at least 2 weeks.
We met out at Shaw's Nature reserve in Gray Summit. Despite it being a holiday, it was practically empty. We had the run of the place on a gorgeous day!

Little Miss enjoyed time with baby Grant. He was 7.5 months in this picture. Now 10 months and walking. Poor Ali! We had an absolute blast with you guys!
Summer 2014 had its ups and downs, but we are so grateful for great friends, helpful grandparents/aunts/uncles, cool summer weather, and St. Louis's many many free attractions!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

23 months: 'Bye Bye Baby'

I think the last bit of baby is leaving my little girl. Her cheeks are shrinking, her legs are growing, her temper is firing, and her words, opinions, and personality emerging. She's full blown toddler. And although her 'My DO IT' can sometimes be frustrating, I'm reaaaaalllly enjoying this stage!
This is a fun stage because many of her words sound like 'bad' words and that makes me giggle. Every time! For instance: frog sounds like "f*ck", shirt sounds like "sh*t", and her "clock" is missing the L!
Much to O's chagrin, she's loving his hot wheels track, and she insists it stays 'on'.. therefore draining the batteries. She sure does love her little 'Ownen', and she wants to be just like him!

Typical pre-dinner scene. Waiting for food is a skill yet to be developed!

The morning daddy got back in town from being gone. They wouldn't even let him in the house before they cuddled in for time.

A girl and her dog.

MY DO IT... relates to everything: picking out clothes, dressing herself,
putting toothpaste on her toothbrush, etc!

Sweet shot from the Magic House a few weeks ago. If you can get her engaged in an activity, she's adorable. If she's bored, she's oh.so.needy. 'Mommy hold you me'.

She did a great job with her first haircut, though! Sat so still and watched Frozen (a total favorite right now). You should also know that I totally splurged and paid the extra $1 for the certificate that included the date of her first haircut and an envelope of her little golden locks!

I can't even get her hair pulled out of her face. I'm glad she's so good for other people. Love this grown up hair-do! Bye Bye Baby! 
Another shot at the Magic House. She's all Wade. Loves her animals. Something else 'Wade-ish' that we've noticed in the last month. We listen to the Frozen soundtrack. A lot. Sometimes she sings the words, but most often she moves her voice to match the instrumental inflections in the music. She's a big fan of the flutes.
Twinkle Twinkle Little Star; Millie style.
She's singing, communicating in full phrases & sentences (Mine all done), saying bless you, calling people goofy, and using a variety of additional descriptors and terms of endearment for all of her loves. I can't believe the next time I write about her development she'll be two!

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Cardinal Baseball & Busch Stadium 2014

As of Sept 1, our beloved Cardinals are in first place, and we've been cheering them along all summer. In June we treated Papa Cooper to a Busch Stadium tour for Father's day. It was COOL. Next time, I won't bring the kids.. that way I can actually listen ;)
As you can see, Amelia was thrilled to start the tour (she was coming down with Hand, Foot, & Mouth disease.. I just didn't know it at the time!)

Somewhere I would like to go...

Stan the Man is certainly a Cardinal hero, and he's lauded by most St. Louisans to be an even finer man than baseball player. He passed last year, but his legend lives!

This wallpaper was designed from the Cardinal owner's baseball collection from when he was a little boy. Although the wall looks 3-D, it's actually flat. I love the colors, the unique idea, and the baseball legends on the wall!

KMOX booth. Nice view!

Mike Shannon sits on an exercise ball!

At long last we were on the field. We were under strict orders not to touch (or breathe on) the grass. They pump in chilled water every morning to feed this grass from CO!

Owen's face accurately depicts how I felt, too!

Now that's beautiful.

Hanging out in the Cardinal dug out. Would you believe the wood on the benches is super chipped, old, ugly, etc? Seems like they could afford to replace that every now and again!

I'm pretty sure this should be my parent's screen saver.
We even got to bring Uncle Ryan along!

Can you imagine making your major league debut, walking out on to the field and looking up at these seats packed? Or better yet can you imagine being Waino and walking out on to the field for game 1 of the world series and seeing those seats juiced? That would be cool.
Take me out to the ballgame, take me out with the crowd!

We've been enjoying the StL 250 birthday cakes. Every time we see one, the kids climb up to pose.
Mima and I took the kids to a day game in June.

With snacks, they do well and last through about 5 innings. Then we head down to Fredbird's corner for some climbing and play time.

Then we head to Ted Drewe's for some frozen custard. I think this might be one of my absolute favorite shots of Amelia... ever.

While M was out of town, my folks treated the kids and me to Fred Bird's build-a-bear birthday party. This year they gave out Clydesdales to every kid with a ticket. We totally built up this day. Arrived at the gates 2 hours before game time, got our lovies, had lunch at ballpark village, and then went to the game. We really pushed nap time, but it was well worth the experience.
Sleepy Amelia spent several innings pushing her 'Horsie Mine' around in the stroller.
Whatever works!
We hope to continue cheering our favorite team along well in to October!