Sunday, November 30, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving! (belatedly)

Once again I have to apologize for the length of time between posts! This time, though, I can't blame illness - I dropped and broke our camera chasing Maisie around Underwater Adventures, the aquarium at the Mall of America. So as a result, I have no pictures to share of our lovely Thanksgiving, which included a trip to Iowa to meet baby Maya. But if someone has some and can email them to me (hint hint Clare!) then I'd be happy to share them here.

But we went shopping the day after Thanksgiving and picked up a lovely new camera at Best Buy. (We also got the extended insurance plan that covers accidental damage, say for instance if it were dropped.) So I do have pictures from our trip to the Minnesota Zoo today!

One of the highlights, for Maisie, of a trip to the zoo is always sitting on this giant metal tortoise. It can be hard to get her off the metal tortoise to go see the actual, real animals sometimes!

You may notice that Maisie has another orange hat on! She got this pumpkin hat as a birthday present from her grandma Jo, who made it for her. Since it's too cold out for her other orange hat, she's now taken to this one as her constant headwear. She gets lots of compliments on it!

After walking around for a while, we sat by the gibbons' enclosure and had a snack. I learned today that one of the differences between monkeys and apes is that monkeys have tails, whereas apes do not. So there is a fun animal science fact for you!

We ended our zoo day at Discovery Bay, which houses the aquatic animals. There's a giant aquarium with all kinds of interesting fish (and sharks!), a tidal touch pool that Maisie loves to splash in, and a dolphin tank. Maisie enjoyed watching the dolphins swim around.

Normally there are dolphin shows, but one of the dolphins turned up pregnant, so all shows are cancelled until some time after she gives birth. But in the meantime, we still like to watch them swim around and play together.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


Sorry no posts for over a week, but poor Maisie's been dealing with an ear infection (and we've been dealing with poor Maisie!).

She was home from daycare Monday through Thursday last week, and got to see her pediatrician twice before she recovered enough to go back to school on Friday. So while we had some cute photo-worthy moments, like discovering the magic of Play-Doh on Tuesday, we also had lots of tears and complaining, which does not make for cute pictures.

Fortunately for all of us, the antibiotics her doctor prescribed worked their magic, and we're all back to our normal routines!

Lately Maisie has been very big on "helping." Sometimes she's really helpful, like when we're picking up toys and putting them away. Other times she's less helpful, like when I'm, say, vacuuming. When I'm in the kitchen, she always brings in a chair and wants to help with whatever I'm doing.

Today she wanted to help wash dishes! I ran some warm, soapy water, put in some spoons, bowls, and plastic cups, and gave her a sponge. She really went to town! She poured water into the cups with the spoons, and then poured it from cup to cup and back into the sink. She was incredibly focused and working really hard! It was very cute. The soapy water got everywhere, of course, but now the counters and floors are really clean!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Birthday party!

It's about a week late, but here's the recap of Maisie's 2nd birthday party! Photos are courtesy of our friend Patrick, who is Trixie's daddy and a great photographer. Thanks Patrick!

Everyone had a blast! (I'm pretty sure, anyway!) I know Maisie did, and I did too.

We had the party at the Children's Museum. It was pretty small - just immediate family plus a few friends with similarly-aged kids.

We all had cake and ice cream. The kiddos had juice, and most of the grownups went to the coffee shop conveniently located in the gift shop of the museum. That's some good planning, there!

After cake and ice cream, and running around with the other kids, Maisie opened her presents (with some help from me and Dylan).

Maisie got a lot of great presents from our generous friends and family! She really loves them all, especially her toys that she can "cook" with, her Mr. Potato Head (with friends), and her new "wodot" (robot). You all are so thoughtful! We could tell a lot of thought went into choosing her gifts.

After opening presents, we went upstairs and played in the museum. They have a great new exhibit all about balls! There's a special area for littler kids where they can explore how different size balls bounce on different surfaces. It's kind of crazy, but they had a blast.

This picture really only hints at the lunacy of that room.

Afterwards, everyone went home and had naps. At least, that's what we did, and I can only assume others did the same!

Thanks for helping us celebrate Maisie's birthday!

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Election day!

Yesterday we all went to vote, first thing in the morning. We had to wait about 45 minutes in line, which nobody really enjoyed, but Maisie was remarkably patient. (I think the cookies they had at our polling place helped!)

Aaron (and Maisie) got to the front of the line, and got to vote, before I did.

But we all did get to vote, even if it took a little longer than we thought it would, and we were so happy with the results!

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Happy Halloween!

As you may know, Halloween is probably my favorite holiday. I had high hopes of passing this love of all things Halloween on to Maisie. But unfortunately, it turns out she has been afraid of all her costumes. Last year she refused to wear the shark costume we got her. This year I went for something less objectively scary, but no luck: she said her panda costume was too scary, and totally refused it.

She partially relented after seeing her daycare friends dressed up, and after I explained that trick or treating requires a costume. She agreed to wear the hat, but not the rest of the costume. So, this is Maisie semi-dressed up as a panda.

She also insisted on carrying her "I'm voting for kids!" fan.

Skeptical as she was about costumes, Maisie got the hang of trick or treating really quickly. We didn't hit too many houses, just a few friends in the neighborhood, but she enjoyed it a lot. She was really good about saying "TREAT!!" and even said thank you after she got her candy. Then she had Kit Kats for dinner, and cried the next morning when we said she had to eat cereal, not Whoppers, for breakfast.

At least Halloween only comes once a year!

P.S. Can you believe Maisie turns 2 on Monday?? It's absolutely nuts to me, that she's been with us for so long! It seems like only yesterday that we were staying up all night with her, watching endless reruns of Lou Dobbs and Larry King on CNN and wishing she would sleep for four hours straight. But at the same time, I can hardly remember life without her. What did I do with all my free time??