Monday, August 31, 2009

My little book worm!

Well, I took my mama's advice and took my little lovebug to Border's for the very first time. To be honest, I'd been putting it off and putting it off because I had the mental picture in my head of perfect moms with their perfect children sitting around a storyteller quietly enjoying a good book. Sophia is ALWAYS the kid that's singing along in church even when the music stops or lalala-ing through the Chaplain's prayer at one of Chris' functions. To my delight, Sophia was the perfect little angel sitting in the kid's zone at Borders. It was like she discovered a whole new world. There were SO many books full of puppies and Elmo and her personal favorite today...horses. It was overall a wonderful learning experience for Sophia. She knows when it's time to play like when we take a trip to the playground or when she gets to hang out with her friends at the gym, but she also knows when it's time to be sit and read and settle down for some much needed peace.

It has been EXTREMELY hot here the past week or so and the fact that we don't have air conditioning makes it seem even hotter. For the most part, I don't even notice we don't have air but we're moving into fire season and I forgot how hot the month of September is. However...nothing here will ever compare to how hot it is where my hubby is so time to offer it up and start thinking of new ways (like Border's) to stay cool! :) We'll see how my mama fares with the California weather when she visits in 2 weeks! Yup, that's right...I get my mama all to myself for a whole week and I am SO excited. It gets me thinking back to when my mom stayed with me when Sophia was first born and all that she did to help. I don't know what I would have done without her and can't wait to show her what a day in the life of Sophia and I is like and how much i've learned from her example. Hurry up and get here Mama!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Well, Sophia has officially learned to call the dogs! Most of the time it's just Sophia, the dogs and I hanging around in the house and it's the funniest thing to watch them together. Sancho and Jaina are truly Sophia's friends. They are the first thing she goes to after being out running errands with me. She plays with them, she kisses them, she feeds them and NOW she calls them by name. She has always said hi to them as she passes by but now she's clearly saying 'Sacho and Nana'. 'Nana' (Jaina) is her favorite. She goes all around the house saying...'Nana, Nana, Nana'...then finds her, smiles and says 'There she is!'. I'm constantly amazed at how much she understands but only recently have I noticed how much MORE she is talking. Chris mentioned it after we 'video chatted' the other night how much more expressive Sophia is. I can't imagine what it's going to be like when she strings her first sentence together. A double edged sword really...being able to express herself using her words but also being able to ALWAYS express herself using her words. :) Sophia is also now bringing me a diaper when she wants to be changed and lies down ready for me to change her. We've been practicing sitting on the potty and hopefully after she learns to string sentences together we can move to pull-ups and on to potty training! Phew, it's exhausting just thinking about. All the changes and new developments. But you know what...after a long day with Sophia at the end of the night I always get my snuggle time. We talk about Daddy and how much he misses her. We talk about how much Mommy and Daddy love her and how proud we are of all that she is learning. I put her down for the night and when the lonliness starts to hit I look around the house scattered with toys and am amazed that Chris and I have created this beautiful chaos. It makes missing him easier, if that even makes sense. It makes the hard work and the long days worth it. How can you be sad when you have Miss Sophia to make you smile?

Friday, August 21, 2009

With the added motivation to get in shape for when Chris comes home, about a week and a half ago I joined a gym! It's right across the street from my house and has a fantastic kid's zone all for a great price! Okay, so truthfully, I was a little nervous about how Sophia would handle an area with other kids and new people watching her/playing with her. So far, it has been such a great learning experience for her. There are times I find Sophia to be 'clingy' but for the most part she is extremely independent so much so that if given the opportunity to stay by mom, she'd run the other direction and look for something new to explore. Now that I've been going to the gym regularly it has been interesting seeing how Sophia deals with different situations. Some days she doesn't want me to go. Other days she's quick to jump in and play with one of the kid's zone girls. Today, after working out, I come in to scoop her up and was told by the girls working that Sophia had been very sweet to one little girl who missed her mommy. Aparently one of the girls started crying and Sophia immediately went to give her a kiss and to wipe her tears with her own shirt. Can you believe that? I melted. MY little girl being so sensitive and sweet, looking out for others and remembering that when she cries mommy and daddy wipe her tears. Now I do realize that I'm maybe making this a bigger deal than it is but it made my day! I feel so proud and it gives me a glimpse into what it will be like when she gets older and we start to see how much she is learning. Granted with the good comes the bad. I know as well as anyone that there are going to be moments where she drives me crazy. However, I firmly believe that it is important to keep things in perspective, to remember what is most important and that is putting others before yourself, doing the best you can in any situation and remembering that happiness does not come from the superficial things in this life but from things much more important. Until the days where bigger lessons are learned, I'm going to enjoy my first little success!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Amanda's not a teenager anymore!!!

I have to be honest...I was dreading Amanda's birthday all week. It was bittersweet because we all knew that Chris and Amanda were leaving the next morning. We decided to spend the day shopping, grabbing some lunch down by the beach and then driving into San Deigo to eat on the water! My friend Molly gave us some great ideas for restaurants that had amazing views and we found a great place with yummy seafood! I'm sure Amanda's birthday was a little different for her being that she was away from her family and had a low key night but it was really great to be able to celebrate with her! Anyways, here's to another year Amanda where I hope you live your life to the fullest and trust that God has a very special plan for your life! I love you!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Where would I be without my family?

"Call it a clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, call it a family...whatever you call it, wherever you need one" -Jane Howard
I've been thinking a lot these days about family and what it means to be a part of one. It's been on my mind because of course a big part of my little family is missing. It is amazing how many people have reached out to me and offered their support knowing that Chris is gone. Take for example my sisters...who gave up two weeks of their summer to come hang out with me and Sophia. Or Amanda and Chris who instead of "party-ing" is up California style, kept me company every night with great conversations and lots of laughter. Or Mom and Dad who are always there for advice and support whenever I need someone to talk to. Or Toni and Judy who have always been there for encouragement helping me pick my head up when things get lonely. I guess having time alone has got me thinking how I can be as helpful to others as I feel others are helpful to me. How can I use these 7 months to be a better wife and think of things I can do to make Chris' life easier at home when he returns? More importantly to set an example for Sophia that our family is strong and extremely close and will always be the first ones there to help her. Teaching her that giving of yourself is way more rewarding than being consumed with your own issues or problems. I know she sees the fun that she can have with her family and appreciates spending time with her Aunties and Uncles, her Nani and Papa, and her Nana and Great-Nana Judy. Seeing through the eyes of a child is truly fascinating and teaches me so many things about life. I love the way she brings joy to everyone around her. I learn from her that life is too short to fight and bicker about things that in the grand scheme of things don't matter. Life's too short not to smile and look on the brightside because there are plenty of people out there who are struggling more than you. And life is certainly too short to take for granted the time we spend with family and the memories we make along the way.

On our way to LA!

Well of course we HAD to take a trip up the coast to LA while the kiddo's were here for a couple reasons really. I've never done the tourist-y thing in LA and while I had a couple of extra hands I thought it would be nice to see Hollywood Blvd. and do some shopping! :) We started off driving north to Laguna and then headed into Newport where Amanda and Chris had found this amazing little outdoor shopping mall. The shopping mall had some great shops but also had a carousel which Sophia had never been on before. Oh my goodness, I don't think I've ever seen Sophia so excited. Thanks to Amanda we got some great pictures of Sophia riding the horses so that we could send them to Chris and show Dada what a big, brave girl Sophia is! After some fun in the sun shopping and playing with Sophia we were off to Huntington Beach. We continued on to Santa Monica and finally to downtown LA where we parked and walked the strip! The best thing about LA was the quiet dinner we had at one of the local restauraunts. The quiet was a nice break from the dirty and incredibly crowded Sunset Blvd. We ate at what looked like a sports bar from the outside but to our suprise everything inside was kid friendly and very cool. Everything was done by touch screen from ordering to paying AND there were also games to play while we were waiting for our food. Needless to say Sophia enjoyed the atmosphere and we all had a nice dinner before we headed back home! Overall, a fantastic day sightseeing in beautiful California with great company!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Phew! Where to begin? Looking back on this past week with Amanda and Chris I can't count the number of amazing moments that we shared. I am amazed at how fast the time went but so incredibly blessed at how our relationships were strengthened and how many great memories we made together! It really is amazing that Chris could even find the time off to come out and visit Sophia and I with everything that he has going on with baseball. As I saw them off today I just kept thinking how this trip was exactly what we all needed. Sophia could not have been happier.
The two of them flew in at about noon last Tuesday and left early the following tuesday morning. We packed so much into a week from shopping to trying to find the best fish tacos to sightseeing in LA to enjoying the beautiful weather in San Diego and touring Coronado (by car). We even got a few workouts in at the gym together! The last time that Chris and Amanda were around Sophia was when she was about 8 months. At that point she was barely crawling and really couldn't comprehend who the people were coming in and out of her life. This trip was totally different for her. I could see how happy she was when she was interacting with both Amanda and Chris. It's funny...she has this way about up every room. Everyone she meets is drawn to her because it's impossible not to be...she's such a happy little kid. Yes, she has her stubborn moments but overall she was fantastic exploring every new place that we went to and making memories with her Uncle Chris and Auntie Amanda. This is exactly what I wanted when I chose Chris to be Sophia's godfather. I can see how he loves her and there are no words to describe how that makes me feel. Wow, how life is different when you have a child! The things in life that seemed to be so monumental before I had Sophia in no way compare to the every day things Sophia and I do together! I am so blessed! I want to take a quick second to really thank Amanda and Chris for taking the time to come out to visit us. Thank you for ALL you did to help me but most of all thank you for the conversations we had and the memories we made. There were so many times that I just sat back and watched the two of you interact with Sophia and it's really sweet how she adores you both. Don't ever doubt the impact you have on her life even living so far away and always remember that I'm here for you, like you guys were here for me! I am proud to have you both in my life and couldn't have asked for better examples for Sophia! COME BACK SOON! :)