Sunday, March 23, 2008

Hoppy Easter!

Happy Easter from the Collins' family! We had a great -- but quick visit with Mae's Pop-pop and Aunt Lulu (Jenn) before they had to drive back to Maryland. We hope everyone had a great holiday!

Mae is overjoyed to be sharing ribs and grits with her parents and Pop-pop at Red, Hot & Blue's brunch!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Somebody's 1 Today!

Unkie Will and Aunt Lulu (Jenn) got Mae the cutest outfit proclaiming her first birthday with a matching tiara!

Happy Birthday, Mae! None of us can believe it has been a whole year!

To make the day special, Rich took off work and Aunt Lulu and Pop-Pop drove down to celebrate! We all went to see Horton Hears a Who -- Mae's first movie theater experience. At first, we weren't sure she was ready for the movies or for watching them in public but in the weeks leading up to her birthday, Mae had been getting very excited at the Horton trailers so we thought we'd give it a try. We are pleased to report that she LOVED the movie and we all survived the movie. Luckily, there were only 6 other people there when we saw it.

We also stopped by Toys R Us to pick up a new child gate for our incredibly mobile toddler. For those of you parents that are not already a member of the Toys R Us Birthday Club, we highly recommend it. They sent Mae a little gift certificate, but more importantly they made a big deal about her birthday when we visited the Cary store -- giving her a balloon, a birthday crown, and announcing her birthday over the loudspeaker. Unfortunately, Jenn has all the pictures on her camera (and we are hoping to get them soon to share)!
We then went home and had birthday cupcakes (which Mae actually tried to eat this time) and opened the many presents Mae received from family and friends! We feel so blessed, not only to have such a wonderful and beautiful child, but also for all the love and support we received this year and on Mae's special day from our family and friends.

PS -- Mae loves all of her presents -- but there were so many, that we are slowly getting to "know" each one to keep from being overwhelmed! Many, many thanks for all the great and thoughtful gifts and cards! She especially loved the personalized wrapping paper from Alex and his mommy, Natasha!

Monday, March 17, 2008

Happy St. Patty's Day!

May your blessings outnumber
The shamrocks that grow,
And may trouble avoid you
Wherever you go!

No cornbeef, cabbage or Guinness for us this year! We went with green beans instead. Happy St. Patty's Day!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Early Birthday Celebration!

We were sad that Omi and Opi wouldn't be able to join us on Mae's birthday, but we had so much fun celebrating early with them at their home in Hilton Head!

By "accident," Omi used a trick candle -- one that kept relighting! Poor Rich kept blowing out the candle, and blowing out the candle, and blowing out the candle... We finally doused it with water.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Hilton Head in Spring!

Just before Mae's birthday, we took a weekend trip to visit with her Omi and Opi at their home in Hilton Head. We were blessed with beautiful weather, and beautiful company all weekend! Opi took us to their plantation park, where Mae took on the slide for the first time. She loved it - but swinging with Opi and Rich was way more fun!

We also went out to the beach and played in the sand. The water was still a little too cold to get in, but Mae and Kirsten still wanted to test the water (notice how Kirsten and baby are really starting to show!).

Monday, March 10, 2008

First Easter Egg Hunt!

On Sunday, Mae went on her first Easter Egg hunt, hosted by some of the families in our development. There were more than 30 kids hunting the yards for eggs! It was a great turnout and a great event! The bigger kids played games like the bunny sack race and the spoon-egg race. There was even a surprise visit by the Easter Bunny, who handed out carrots to all the kids.
We practiced collecting eggs and putting them in her basket all week to get her ready. She was the only little one not walking, but it didn't hold her back.

Unfortunatley, she was more interested in twigs and pine needles than the eggs. And then a puppy showed up, and her interest in eggs was completely lost.

Still, we collected 7 eggs and had a great time watching all the bigger kids play. She also got to try her first big-kid cookie (one of those plain sugar cookies) and she went nuts. Normally, we offer her a small crumb but this time she lurched after the entire cookie!

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Do your kids act out when your SO is away?

Rich is away curling in the Plainfield Stone this weekend (good luck!), so I am a single parent for a few days. Although it is not often that Rich is away, one thing I have noticed is that our little darling turns into a devil at bedtime when he is away. When he's home, Rich is the primary person to put Mae to bed. But even though I follow their nighttime rituals, I cannot seem to keep her on a reasonable schedule. The first night, it took more than an hour to get her to sleep. The next night, I let her stay up a little later only to get more tears than usual.

I am trying to take comfort in the notion that this is normal and happens to everyone. Or I am just lousy at bedtime routines. Come to think of it, she kind of fusses when I put her down for a nap, too. Oh, well. Enjoy it now, Kid, because some day you'll be craving those naps!