Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Dear Violet,

There are a few things that I hope you don't inherit (or pick up) from me.  Starting something and then slacking off on it is one of those traits that I do NOT like about myself.  Life has been busy lately, but that's no excuse to not write even a little bit in here for you!  It's been 3 months!  Well, I guess one of the traits I do like about myself is that I also have a "better late than never" attitude, and instead of just completely giving up, I eventually finish (or pick back up) what I've started.

I'm trying to think of the best way to do this.  I can't write one single post about Halloween, Thanksgiving, the trip to L.A., Christmas, and all the fun stuff in between, but I'll try...  I'll focus on the highlights and try to choose just a few photos for each event.

Halloween was really fun for us!  You were a witch, but the most ADORABLE witch, of course.  You didn't want to keep your hat on (and you couldn't REALLY tell it was a witch costume without it), so Nana and I "fought" over the hat and took turns wearing it for a good 10 minutes, and then sure enough, you decided it was YOUR hat and YOU wanted to wear it, so we "reluctantly" let you.  :)  You then wore it the REST of the night.  You helped Nana carve 2 pumpkins.  Buzz Lightyear and Woody (from Toy Story) were the selections this year (she chooses different characters every year).  When daddy got to Nana's, we took you to a couple houses to experience trick or treating, and you DID NOT like doing that.  We went to maybe 3 houses and then just took you back home.  I think you were afraid we were going to leave you at the houses or something.  It wasn't the costumes that scared you, because hanging out on the porch all night long with Nana, me and Hagrid was so much fun for you!  You helped hand out the candy to all the trick or treaters.  It was such a great night.

For Thanksgiving we went to Mimi and Pawpaw's in Dallas.  You are starting to get used to going there and it takes less and less time for you to "warm up" to all the people who shower you with hugs and kisses when you get there!  We have such a fun time there.  It was a relaxing trip, and you had so much fun playing with your cousin Kepler.  Other than a few "sharing" catastrophes, you both got along VERY well.  :)  He's so so good with you.  He's young enough to want to play with you, but old enough to help you along with the playing.  It was such a joy to watch.  Also in November, we had the start of a rainy winter, and after a few days in a row of rain, I was trying to decide how to entertain us with being stuck inside, so we built our first fort!  When the lightbulb went off in my head to build one, I immediately got SO excited!  That's one of my favorite memories of growing up- building forts.  Nana was (and still is) such a creative and fun mom, and she'd help us build some pretty grand ones!  You liked it, and we had fun snuggling up and reading to each other, but I think you're still just a tiny bit too young to really appreciate them fully.  Maybe next year.  There's one more thing that happened in November, but I'll come back to that in the next post, so this won't be WAY too long to read in one sitting!

December was action packed!  I took some adorable photos of you for our Christmas cards (although I didn't get too many, because I asked daddy to help, and I think his patience went out before yours did!!).  Then we went to Las Angeles to watch Papa in the Biggest Loser Finale!  I didn't mention this in other posts only because most of the time he was on the show we weren't "legally" allowed to discuss any details.  But your Papa made the whole family SO SO SO PROUD.  He went on the show and lost 165 pounds!  He wasn't a typical reality show contestant.  He stayed true to himself and kept the integrity, positivity and honesty that we all love and respect about him throughout his time on the show.  Also true to his character, being as hard working as he is, he was doing the best of anyone up to that point, and they voted him off because he was a threat.  But Papa came home and kept up his hard work and he blew everyone away at the Finale!  He looked so handsome coming out in his tux at 185 pounds, from 350!  There aren't words to describe how proud I was of him at that moment (well, several moments during this experience actually).  Your Papa is one in a million, and one of the reasons I fell in love with your dad is because he shares some of the same traits.  Those two guys are the most hard working, determined, goal-focused people I've ever known, and I hope you inherit (or pick up) even a fraction of their motivation and determination.  It will get you FAR in life.  In LA we spent time with your aunts, uncles, cousins... and my aunts, uncles, grandparents and cousins, and had a wonderful time visiting with them all.  They just ate you up!  We went to the beach for a little while, but didn't get in the water or anything, just walked along the pier, watching the surfers and feeding the seagulls.  During the taping of the show, kids weren't allowed, so we left ALL the kids with Nana's 2 sisters (ALL= I think like 14 or 15 kids, all under the age of 12!).  It was a disaster, from what I hear.  Nathan threw up, Abbie didn't stop crying, you wouldn't be put down and cried off and on the whole time...  oh boy, I owe them big time!  By the time I got back to the hotel, I found you and Diane BOTH asleep in a chair in the lobby!  You were both so worn out!  We all survived, though.  The next day we celebrated at Disneyland!  We were there for ELEVEN hours, and we had a lot of fun!  You really enjoyed some of the smaller rides, and enjoyed running around with your cousins.  Every day we were there was completely packed with activities, and every night we were SO WORN OUT.  The next day, after missing our flight home (after checking our luggage, including your carseat), we were stuck in LA another day (which wouldn't have been bad if we didn't have to buy another carseat and if I wasn't deathly ill, throwing up all day, and with no clothes or toiletries).  We eventually made it home, only to travel again the next week to spend Christmas with Mimi and Pawpaw in Dallas!  You're such a trooper on all our adventures!  We had a great time at Christmas, and you got all kinds of fun things!  You're old enough now to have opened up your gifts (with a little help from daddy).  You got your first pair of diamond earrings from aunt Amanda, a toy kitchen, a ton of books, some stuffed animals and other little toys, and a baby 4 wheeler!  You didn't even have it opened all the way before you climbed on!  You've had fun with that.  We keep it at Nana's because there's no room to ride it at home, and it keeps it exciting for you!  You had fun playing with your cousins.  Fisher is walking now, and you two had a great time playing and sharing each others' toys.  When we got home from Dallas, I discovered that because of all the full days, you'd only gotten one nap everyday, and you kept that schedule.  Over a month later, and we're still trying to figure out when your body wants to take that one nap.  Sometimes it's as early as 10am, and sometimes it's as late as 2pm.  We both like you to be on a schedule, so I hope we figure it out soon!

Christmas Card Photos:

LA Photos:

Christmas in Dallas Photos:

New Year's Eve this year was incredibly uneventful.  You were asleep at your normal 7:30-8pm bedtime, and I followed not too long after you around 10pm.  I think daddy made it to 11:30.  We're so exciting.  Next year we'll have fun, right?

In January, we've had 2 snow days, and we had fun playing!  The first day, I could NOT find your gloves, and I figured we'd only be outside for 10 minutes or so, so we went out sans gloves.  Bad idea.  You were so cold, and wanted back in after about 5 minutes, and then your hands did that thing where when you go from really cold to warm, they burn and sting really bad, and you cried for about 10 minutes until it leveled back out.  I felt so terrible!!  You'll never play in the snow without gloves on again!  The next day we bought some gloves (and then I found your other ones, of course), and we built a snowman and went sledding down the school playground hill with Nana, Sarah and Avery (and Emma).

Well, I'm pretty impressed with how concise I was with the update!  It's still a pretty good little novel, but it could've been much worse!  This was more of an "event" update, but I'll post another one (or two) about all the things you've been learning lately... you are a GENIUS, and have been a complete sponge lately, learning and soaking up all kinds of new things...  I can't say enough how proud I am of you, and how much I LOVE LOVE LOVE you and the person you are!  Discovering your personality and encouraging your growth has been the best experience, BY FAR, of my entire life.  You're awesome.


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