Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Slappy Meets Baby Ellie

A 4-day-old Ellie greeted us with her proud Papa, Drew.
New mom, Aarin, was looking fabulous, and there is a definite likeness between the two. Ellie has surprisingly big, beautiful, wide open eyes, not the standard, rarely open eyes of a newborn, which she clearly got from her Mom.
Jess got some time with expertly swaddled Ellie, and was amazed at the difference 4 months can make. Although we all know that once these two grow up a little, age will no longer matter, and this here Valley will have to watch out for this duo, lead around by the little Miss Leonhardt.
Who had also stopped by for a visit, and was excited to see that one of her two babies was back after our 3 week tour.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Slappy Dances

This video is a bit older, taken from Mateo's Birthday - July 21 (Jess couldn't put this video up on Fire Island, what with her internet connetions being on the DL). Maddie got to dance again, this time with Bee Grandma (Borrowed Grandma). As you can tell, she loved it.

Slappy Leaves Fire Island

Maddie spent her last full day at Fire Island, learning all about thunderstorms. Uncle Ant and she spent many an hour looking out the screen door at the lightening and rain.
Uncle Wills gave Jess a break by feeding Maddie her first Uncle bottle.
After the storms blew through, Aunt Tara and Uncle Ant took her down to look at the frothy ocean.
And that evening we saw them off on the ferry, bayside.
All of us are barefoot in this picture, as all of Ocean Beach was flooded, some water reaching up to our ankles. Both Maddie and Jess enjoyed the puddle jumping.
Our trip back to LA began at 1pm with a trip back to Long Island on the ferry, Tio Greg letting Maddie be "King of the World".
12 hours and one cancelled flight later, we landed in Burbank.
And one tired baby, finally got to see her Dad. Sam was amazed at how much bigger she had gotten and even commented that her voice sounded older. Jess and Maddie were both so happy to be back in his arms.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Slappy Continues Her Beach Time

With a primary focus on her feet, which she has now figured out how to grab, and is steadily working towards getting into her mouth. Dedo has said that Maddie has succeeded, but it has yet to be confirmed by Mom.
When not focusing on her new appendages, she was watching thunderstorms with Uncle Ant.
Getting read “Pat the Bunny,” by Mimi, and maybe, Maddie’s Mom might have been listening in as well.
Investigating Dedo’s glasses.
Relaxing after walks with Tio Greg.
And meeting her friend/nemesis: sand. Maddie has been fascinated with the sand at all of our beach visits, but up until now, she had only been allowed to put her feet in it. Jess finally decided it was time for something more, and Maddie loved squishing it in her fingers. That is, until she decided she wanted to chew on them. The fast friendship her and sand had formed quickly fell apart, and a hasty departure from the beach was demanded.
Vacationing is hard work.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Slappy Gets a New Partner in Crime

At 5:39am, Eleanor Loa Findley was born to ecstatic parents, Aarin and Drew Findley. She came into the world at a solid 7lbs. 8oz. and 19 inches long. Maddie can hardly wait to get home, and meet her new friend.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Slappy Has Her First Taste of the Island

And it tastes like wine. While at appetizers by the bay, Maddie refused to keep her pacifier in her mouth, continuously dropping it into things she wished she was old enough to enjoy.
Her day began with a walk with Mom and Uncle Wills. Uncle Wills carried Maddie around Ocean Beach for about an hour, as Jess sat on a bench, and “borrowed” some internet outside a hotel. All Fire Island posts are thanks to the patience of her Uncle, who had to field comments like this:
Lady: “What an adorable baby! How old is she?”
Wills: “Thank you. 4 months.”
Lady: “And… how old are you?”
Wills: “17. She’s my niece.”
She went on many walks to the beach with Dedo.
And worked on her new favorite pastime – shoving as many fingers as possible into her mouth at once.
Then another beach walk with Mom.
And finished the day off, missing her Dad. So Mom played Dad’s favorite game with her – the “You’re Right-side Up. Now You’re Up-side Down.” Game.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Slappy Also Enjoys Ferries

Maddie had her longest car ride ever on the road to Fire Island, in probably the most packed car ever. It went better than expected, as Aunt Tara was able to regularly convince Maddie to, "Just hold this for her," as in the pacifier in her mouth.
Next came her first ferry trip - which she was cautious about at first (wind seemingly her enemy, as it caused her to continuously gulp), but then grew to enjoy.
And once off the boat, she was greeted by her Uncle Wills and Dedo, ready for a relaxing few days at Fire Island, Jess' childhood vacation spot.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Slappy Says Happy Birthday

As she celebrated Mateo turning 2!
It was a day full of balloons, rides, dancing, and a cupcake. It was the cupcake that gave Mateo this look - apparently cupcake frosting can be very confusing and slightly intimidating when you're 2.
Luckily, Mama can make anything better.
We ventured out to the Saint Anne's festival in the streets of Hoboken, where Mateo was lucky enough to have both his Grandma and Abuelo with him on his big day.
He also got to suck on a lemon from Papi's lemonade, a past time Jess remembers from the last time she visited when Slappy was still in utero.
The excitement was a little overwhelming for Maddie, who snuggled in for a nap.
And in a picture rarely seen these days, Eddie, Francoise and Jess, sans munchkins (they were both in bed).

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Slappy Has A Full Day

She danced with her madrina.
Although really, the fullness of the day is best expressed through this shot.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Slappy Meets Her (Possible) Betrothed

Mr. Mateo Vielot Gonzalez, who solidified his place in her heart by sliding down the highest slide in the entire playground.
Now, it must be noted, that we say possible, since our official stance is that we do not support arranged marriage for our children.
She watched the Yankees with her (possible) father-in-law, Eddie - having a fine understanding of the game, what with having watched both the Indians with Great Grandma and the Red Sox with Smooth Andre's Dad.
She snuggled with her madrina, Francoise.
Again, was impressed by Mateo's zest for life during a tickle-fest with his Papi.
And got some borrowed Grandma time with Ms. V.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Slappy Likes Humming

Maddie was lucky enough to get a visit from Rodney and Laura.
And Rodney was lucky enough to get a chance to hum tunes on her head. Maddie loved it, and smiled to each hum. Rodney also commented that he remembered visiting Jess in Pittsburgh when she was 18 months old, and carrying her the same way.

Slappy Loves the Theatre

After an Italian lunch, Maddie, Jess and Leon, Jess' theatre mentor, went back to where her career all began. Her high school stage.
Maddie and Uncle Leon got to sit in the front row.
But really, backstage is where it's at. There they found Greased Lighting from Dwight Englewood's latest production.
Now, we'll just have to wait a few years to see if she's been bitten like Mom and Dad.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Slappy Has a Mature Uncle

Happy Birthday Uncle Wills!
Jess' baby brother turned 17 today.
Dr. Kerry came by for the occasion, after all Uncle Wills will now be driving...
But instead of driving, we all went on a walk through Leonia, where Jess was raised. Then came Chinese food followed by Dunkin Donuts coffee.