Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Birthday Party

Chalk it up to being new parents, but yes, we did throw a birthday party for Avery. She won't remember it, but here are the pictures to prove it. And she did seem to have a good time. The cake above is supposed to be a large cupcake surrounded by regular cupcakes. Not bad for an amateur attempt at cake decorating.

Prepping for the party was a whole family affair. Here you see Bob-Bob and Aunt Amber manipulating the fondant for the birthday cake. I had given up on it. The only reason they are both working on it is because it really was this difficult.

Here I am decorating the top of the huge cupcake. (Nana - see the apron I have on? Perfect!)

At the party, Kevin made yummy hamburgers and we all visited and played the Wii. This was Avery's favorite thing to do. After digging in the ice for awhile she would pull out her fingers and show them to me. Explaining the freezing properties of ice is lost on a 1 year old.

Of course Avery ate cake, but this is about as much as she got into it. She was still a bit overwhelmed that the whole room was standing around staring at her.

She received lots of great gifts that she is still enjoying today.

After opening gifts she visited with some of the guests. Here she is reading one of her new books.

So after all the planning and prep, it was in the end, a 1 year old birthday party. The guest of honor did a great job for the most part and we definitely appreciate all who joined us.

Here is a video of Avery enjoying the slide that Grams and Bob-Bob bought her. At some point she will figure out that she is supposed to be sliding down and not just the toys, but for now this is sweet. She and Bob-Bob laughed at this game for quite a long time.


Thursday, July 9, 2009

Avery at 1

This post was written right after her 1st birthday, I just haven't posted it until now. I am glad I wrote it when I did though, because already, only 3 weeks later she has changed so much! These photos were taken on her actual 1 year birthday (June 30).

Awhile back, some friends of ours had a daughter turn one. At that time they wrote a blog entry about all she could do and who she was at one. I really enjoyed that entry and have wanted to do that for Avery. So, as of 1 year, here is a snapshot of who Avery is and what she can do.

~She walks! And really prefers to walk, she still has a ways to go mastering the balance of it all, but she loves the freedom and ability to hold things in her hands while walking.

~She loves people! She is the unofficial greeter at our church on Sunday morning and more than once we have had to take her to the nursery just because she is completely distracting the people in the rows behind us with her flirting.

~She enjoys kids, to a point. We often have kids at our house or go to children's events in the community and she loves interacting with them or watching them.

~She is very very observant. Always has been. She notices every noise and looks to you to explain to her what it is. If something is out of place, she notices it, or points it out to you.

~She is quite independent. She loves books, but more often than not, she wants to look at them and turn the pages by herself.

~She is an on and off eater. The days she doesn't want to eat, nothing will convince her otherwise. The days she wants to eat, she can nearly eat her weight in blueberries, kiwi, green beans, spaghetti, or goldfish crackers. But her favorite thing to eat is whatever is on mommy or daddy's plate.

~She knows how to initiate 'Itsy Bitsy Spider' and can do recognizeable hand motions throughout the song.

~She uses the signs for 'all done', 'more', and 'eat' regularly.

~Her first word was 'dada' and she can now say 'mama', 'bye-bye', and several more that only mommy can understand. She also is imitating a lot of sounds including animal noises.

~She says 'takoo' (thank-you) often and at the proper time.

~She has just learned to stand up without using something to pull up on.

~She loves climbing stairs and has also just learned to go down a step feet first.

~She understands an incredible amount of what is said to her. A scary amount, actually. I can tell her, "Find your puppy so we can go bye-bye" and she will search the house for her favorite stuffed dog and bring him to me. I can also say to her, "Get a diaper and we will change you" and she will get it and bring it to me. I don't even want to guess what all she is absorbing.

~She is an extremely pleasant person. She is very easy going and generally goes along with whatever very well.

~She loves loves her Daddy. When he comes home from work she drops whatever she is doing and makes a beeline for the front door.

So, I realize this list could go on and on, but this is a good picture of who Avery is at 1 year. At this point it is going by very fast and I can see the growth and development happening right before my eyes. I am so blessed to have been given this sweet and precious child to 'learn parenting' on. Happy 1 year old my darling girl.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

More June

As I mentioned, we had a lot go on in June. Luckily, my parents joined us for the entire month and helped out a lot with parties and Avery watching.

One of the most exciting and greatest accomplishments of the month is that Kevin COMPLETED HIS THESIS! His defense was on the 10th and a few days later the last and final touches and edits were done and it was complete! Here is Kevin at his defense. I was able to attend and was very impressed with all he did and how calm he was. Hooray, Kevin!

Here he is a couple of days later showing Avery his work. She was impressed too, I'm sure. :)

That weekend he rode his bike in a triathalon where his cousin, David ran, and his uncle, Kurt swam. Here is the team. They did well.

There were a lot of riders. Kevin is in the center of the photo in the orange and white jersey.

Of course, Kevin's biggest fan had to pose for a picture with him after the race.

That evening, we had a Congratulations/Graduation Party for Kevin. He grilled (of course) some yummy ribs and a brisket. He is becoming quite the skilled party chef.

The next day was Sunday and Fathers Day. Our special guys opened their cards and gifts together in the RV.

Here is Avery's very first real swimming pool experience. As you can see, she warmed up to it pretty well.

We are starting to transition Avery into wearing shoes. It did not start out very promising. She considered the process just a challenge to her to see how fast she could get them off. She is doing better now though, and since Grams bought her some cute ones and Aunt Amber gave her some cute sandals for her birthday, she is actually asking to wear them upon occasion.

So, that is all for now. This updating stuff takes a long time when Avery is not napping! I still have lots to share about the birthday party and I even found some pictures from May that I need to post. Plus, some extremely cute videos. But that is all for now!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

So Much to Share!

June was such a crazy month, I will have to post it in several pieces... Between Kevin finishing his thesis, defending his thesis, celebrating the completion of his thesis, him riding in a bike race, Father's Day, Avery turning 1, having a birthday party, and my parents being in town, we have had a full, full month. However, July looks to be just as busy, so I make no promises as to when this blog will be up to date. But, in no particular order, here is a start...

My friend Sarah is a photographer. You can visit her website here. For Avery's official one year old photos we met her at a local park and she took these photos. We love love them! If I get nothing else posted, you need to see these.