Thursday, July 11, 2013

Swim Lessons Day 3

I had a doctors appointment and couldn't take Anne to class today. Mrs. Gladys took her instead and had a good report. Anne cried most of the time but is doing better. She's making progress. Here's a video from today's class.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Swim Lessons Day 2

All day long I dreaded swim lessons.  I didn't want to go and put Anne through another day of it, but I pushed through and took her.  

As we got ready and took off her swim cover up, she was happy, giggling and talking to other kids.  And then we lined up on the side of the pool and she immediately fell apart.  She remembered what happened yesterday and started screaming, latching onto my arm and my all time favorite, pinching my arm.  (I have bruises on my right arm where she's left marks from yesterday and today's lessons.)

She did great though.  Although she cried the entire 10 minutes, I could tell that she was making progress.  She used both of her little legs to kick unlike yesterday when she used just her left leg.  She swam underwater, crawled of the pool and swam on her own.  I'm so proud of her and know that each day will get a little easier.  

After she was wrapped up and getting ready to leave, she was happy again and fell asleep on the way home.  
Here's a little video Mrs. Gladys took of her in class today.  Watch those little legs!


Monday, July 8, 2013

Swim Lessons Day 1

Matt and I recently signed Anne up for swim lessons.  I've been terrified by the number of stories on the news lately about drowning victims.  Growing up with a pool in our backyard, I've always been comfortable in the water and want to make sure Anne feels the same way.  I remember swimming while my father watched us and fussed because we weren't using the best freestyle form even though we were playing.  I still hear him say, "Put your face down."

I did some research and read some reviews of a woman named, Ms. Cathy, who's been teaching lessons in Austin for many, many years.  There were great reviews from parents on how their children had learned to swim by the end of the 10 lessons. My main concern at this point is just making sure Anne is safe and can get out of a pool should she fall in when no one is around.  I don't plan on that ever happening, but safety first, people!

Today was Anne's first lesson.  She's signed up for 30 minute group lessons that will conclude on Thursday, July 18th.

Mentally, I thought I had prepared myself for it.  I knew she would cry.  I knew she would scream.  However, there is nothing that could prepare me to throw my 16-month old child into a pool.  Parents line up with their kids and the first few times, Ms. Cathy takes your child and pushes their face underwater as them swim to the steps where parents meet their kids to get back in line.  Anne screamed after the first time in the water.  Next, parents throw their kids in the water where Ms. Cathy directs them to swim to steps, next she pushes them to the bottom and they swim up and to the steps.

Overall, it was emotionally exhausting.  I cried and tried not to let Anne see how hard it was for me.  She went into "koala-pose" and latched onto my side, my arm and my leg, anything to keep me from putting her back in the water.  Other kids were screaming and trying to get away from their parents.  Thankfully, the lesson only last 30 minutes and she assures us that the worst is behind us.

However, the last time I put her in the water, she swam all the way to the steps, underwater and by herself.  I could tell that it was working and I loved watching her little left leg kick as she swam to the steps.  I would cheer for her and she would even stop crying for a moment to clap before crying again.

I'm glad we're doing this; however, it's hard.  I know it will be good for her and by the end of next week, she'll be able to safely swim and get out of a pool.

My goal is to blog about her progress over the next 10 days and hopefully have a video to show at the end.  I can assure you that today's video wouldn't have been fun to watch as I held back the tears and threw my baby girl into a pool.  I'm proud of her and right now, she's forgotten all about it and looking through a stack of magazines.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

July 3rd Fireworks Show

A nearby golf club hosts an annual July 3rd fireworks show. Matt had heard about it a while ago and ended up buying tickets for the three of us to attend.  We were excited to hear that our friends, the Potts, would be there as well.

Admittedly, we were a little worried if Anne would make it to 9:30 pm fireworks; however, we thought we would take our chances since it's so close to the house, we'd be able to quickly get home if she had a meltdown.

That evening, we packed up the car with blankets, chairs and bug spray and headed towards the Grey Rock Club.  Once we got there, we had a few lessons learned regarding things that we should have packed.  More snacks, booze, koozies and glow sticks, a must have among the kids and a glow-in-the-dark bracelet was pretty appealing to Anne.

The weather was lovely and played, ate dinner and caught up with our friends.  Right at 9:30 the fireworks started and Anne was a little scared at first, but started pointing at them and enjoyed the show.  We were so proud of her for being so good all night!  As soon as we put her in the car seat, we heard sweet, baby snores from the back.

A lovely way to spend the evening and we look forward to going back next year.  Thanks to the Potts for a fun evening!

Splash Pad

This week we took Anne to her first splash pad and boy, did she love it!  At first, she was a little unsure; however, after a few minutes of help from her Dad, she fell in love with it.

She ran from end to end and then to straight to us where she wanted to jump into the pool.  This little write-up won't fully explain how happy she was, but this picture does capture the pure joy on her face.

We loved watching her and can't wait to take her back soon!

A Lesson from Coco Chanel

Anne and all of her jewelry

Our sweet girl loves jewelry.  She loves it so much that I'm unable to put it on until I leave the house, otherwise, she'll practically choke me or pull my earrings trying to get her hands on whatever I'm wearing.

As I see little touches of her personality developing, it's amazing to watch and think how she's becoming her own little person.  A little girl with likes, dislikes, thoughts and feelings.  Some of these things I love and others, not so much.  However, I'm excited to see the person she becomes one day.

Until then, I could live without the shaking of the head when I try to get her to sit in a high chair or a stroller.

A few weeks ago, Mrs. Gladys gave Anne a set of Mardi Gras beads.  Instead of choosing one or two strands to wear, she, of course, wore them all.  That afternoon I tried to explain to Anne that Coco Chanel said a lady should take off the last accessory she put on.  In the case of Anne's necklace selection that afternoon, she should have taken off the last 10 accessories.

My girl loves jewelry and is starting to love shoes.  I can only think that we named her after the right person.

Pappy and Pearls, what more does a girl need?

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Dallas Road Trip

Last weekend, Anne and I drove to Dallas so that we could see my Uncle Sam and Aunt Anne and I could attend a bridal shower for my friend, Katie.

Katie and I lived together while I was in New York.  She's the daughter of one of my aunt's dear friend and was in need of a roommate the summer that I was interning in the City.  Although we didn't meet until the day I moved in, it worked out perfectly and I'm so glad that we've kept in touch all of these years.  Actually, I moved to New York 10-years ago this weekend.  It was a wonderful summer and I'm so glad that I had the opportunity to do something so incredibly special.

When we got to Dallas, baby Anne and Sam quickly became pals.  She sat in his lap and walked up to him asking him to hold her.  It was incredibly sweet to see the two of them together.  She loved Aunt Anne as well and I think the jewelry Anne wore helped them to become fast friends as well.  Aunt Anne also pulled out some of her childhood blocks for Anne to play with.

Sam graciously, our should I say, bravely, agreed to babysit while Anne and I went to the shower.  I had no doubt that Sam would do a great job; however, I was worried that Anne would be fussy and he would have his hands full.  While we were away, they grabbed lunch, went for a stroller ride and played.  When I got home, we all needed another nap after being so busy.

Sunday, I was sad to leave the two of them.  We had such a wonderful time and they mean so much to me.  I'm so grateful for their support and love.  I just wish that I could get to Dallas more often.  I know we'll back soon for the wedding, but hope to squeeze in another trip before then.

Thanks for a wonderful weekend, Sam and Anne.  We love you!

***It should not surprise anyone that I didn't take pictures, but next time, I will capture some of the sweet snuggles between baby Anne, Sam and Anne.