Tuesday, September 25, 2007

New Adventures in Parenting

Becoming a parent is one thing, but becoming the parent of a toddler is a whole new thing... I have beamed with pride at all of Madeleine's accomplishments. She rolled over so well, crawled so cute, walked so steadily, chattered up a storm. Now she has learned some things that leave me not so much beaming but with clinched teeth as I watch her climb up the mountains of furniture and toys that I'm sure will lead to a busted lip. As she leaps from the furniture, barely missing the corner of the wooden tray on the ottoman or brushes passed the edge of the breakfast table that is just tall enough to put an eye out as she rounds the room for the hundredth time chasing our poor dog. Yes, there are still times that I beam at new frontiers she conquers, but mostly I'm just thankful to make another day without blood.

We have spent the month enjoying time together as a family. Madeleine has learned to put on makeup, or so she thinks. I always allowed Maddie to play with my makeup bag while I fixed up my face, that was until now....You can see from the pictures that Madeleine has figured out how to not pretend to, but actually open the eyeshadow and concealer. She took care to apply the makeup with the correct brushes and sponges atleast. She has become quite the diva. She takes care to always bring along a purse and ask for chapstick before getting out of the car. I don't know where she gets these ideas?!?!

Matthew and I have been wanting to take a family vacation with just the three of us. We decided that we should take Madeleine to San Antonio to visit Shamu. We met some friends there and took the kids to SeaWorld together. Madeleine absolutely LOVED SeaWorld. She was on her feet during all the shows, clapping, singing and dancing. She would even put her baby on her head and push her around like the trainers ride on the noses of the dolphins and whales. It was truly a delight to see her have so much fun! I must say that I had quite a wonderful time there too. I got to feed and pet some dolphins. The babies had fallen asleep in their strollers and Matthew got me several containers of fish to feed the dolphins. It was truly the highlight of my month!

While in San Antonio, we stayed at the Hyatt on the Riverwalk. The hotel was in a great location to explore the downtown area. I will hand out a warning to any of you who think a trip to the Riverwalk is in your future...The Riverwalk is not such a toddler/ baby friendly place. The walkways along the river are VERY narrow and with many stairs on bumby pathways it is not in the least "stroller friendly". Don't think just because you're in San Antonio on the famous Riverwalk that you will find any quality Mexican food. We were absolutely disappointed in the food we tried there and when we expressed our dissatisfaction the waiter told us that is was mainly for the tourist. Being from Texas though, we expected better. We did enjoy some great Bar-B-Que on the second night a the County Line on the Riverwalk. We also enjoyed a great meal in our hotel room for breakfast. The pictures will show how Maddie loved the cream cheese that came with Matthew's bagel more than the fruit plate we ordered for her.

We finished our trip to San Antonio with a visit to the Alamo. After having 12 years of Texas History I felt the need to actually see one of the most historical places in our history as a Texan. I will not lie and tell you that it was wonderfully inspiring or that it even had a sentimental touch. I don't know quite what I expected, but what I got was just a few buildings that had been stripped of anything from the period and turned into gift shops. Why is it so difficult for historical societies to leave things as they found them and only restore, not remodel places with significant history. It really puzzles me how in America we cannot sustain the history in the archecture of a building longer than 170 years. Appearantly some parts of the Alamo mission where torn down to make the city streets wider. This would be absolutely unheard of in Europe where they have protected structures and even ruins for hundreds of years. Well, that will conclude that tangent and I will step off my soapbox now.

We only have a month left until the big move and time seems to be flying by us. I will update again next month and let everyone know how Madeleine did with Halloween.

Love and Hugs!