Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Eight Months

Dad here taking over blogging duties on a very temporary basis.  Olivia just turned eight months old about a week ago!  We can't believe how fast she is growing up.  Each month we see marked improvement in so many areas.  There is one particular area, though, where Olivia is actually regressing.  She refuses to sit still during our monthly photo shoot.  This month she looked everywhere but the camera before finally breaking down.

It's been amazing to see her take such strides in her movement.  We remember just six months ago when we would get excited when she kept her head up for a couple of seconds.  Now she is crawling all over the place and we struggle to keep track of her.  In the last month she has really taken to pulling up on anything she thinks may be remotely stable (she is rarely correct).  Also, she has started cruising a bit - pulling herself up on an object and then using that object as a walker.

Another thing that has been cool is that Olivia is now eating a lot more solid foods.  We have introduced a LOT of different foods in the past month with varying degrees of success (turkey=bad, chicken=good).  Also, we have finally come to grips with the fact that Olivia is not normal when it comes to the sounds she makes when she eats.  We tried to convince ourselves for a long time that it was normal for some babies to make these sounds (the closest description is a baby version of Monica Seles grunting after each bite) but we have been told over and over again that babies are not supposed make loud sounds every single time they take a bite.  Feeding Olivia in public immediately provokes every person within 75 yards to look in our direction.

Not coincidentally, we have begun to eat out less and less!  That has allowed us to start grilling again which is a Dean tradition in the summer (Corona required). Also, we have found a gym near our house that has a daycare for Olivia.  We hope that this will allow us to get back in shape.  Of course, I am mainly talking about myself since Persis has already lost all her baby weight and somehow magically passed it on to me.
Olivia is settling in and now she really loves her school.  She loves all her teachers now but she really loves Miss Sam in particular.  I didn't really think of myself as a jealous person until the other week when I called Persis and told her with unbridled joy that Olivia cried when I passed her off to Miss Sam.  This is not usually the case as Olivia is often thankful to get away from me and in to the arms of her favorite teacher.  I am trying to get over my grudge against Miss Sam.  She makes it easy to forgive her by making me laugh with all the funny stuff she does with Olivia.  Just last week she gave Olivia her first ponytail!
Finally, Olivia has started babbling all the time over the last week.  She alternates between "B" sounds and yelling "ahhh" all the time.  Don't read "ahhh" as a relaxing sound you make like when you take off your shoes after a long day.  Read it as "AHHH!" as if you jumped out from a dark corner trying to scare one of your unsuspecting buddies. 

Going back to where we is a video we took of an unhappy Olivia after we finished taking pictures of her on the day she turned eight months old.  Enjoy!

Monday, May 28, 2012

Going to the Chapel

Olivia went to her very first wedding this weekend - Aunt Yasmin got hitched to Grant!  Olivia was the honorary flower girl and I was a bridesmaid, so we packed up the car and headed to Fort Worth for the weekend.  Miss O did great on the car ride up there - she slept most of the way and, when she was awake, she was content with a toy and her new favorite CD.

We stopped at Sushi Zushi - a delicious sushi restaurant that Yasmin & Grant introduced us to.  They don't have a location in Houston, so every time we are in Dallas we have to make a stop.  Uncle Ryan and Uncle Douglas met us up there and Olivia was in LOVE with them.  She's having some major stranger anxiety lately, so it was a real compliment that she was hugging and kissing all over them!

On Saturday we went to a DELICIOUS bridesmaids brunch at Lili's Bistro. (If you're ever in Fort Worth, stop by and get the Gorgonzola Fries!).

On Saturday we started to thing ready for the ceremony.  Olivia "helped" assemble lanterns (and by "help" I definitely mean destroy!).

Saturday night was the rehearsal dinner.  It was a fun night and Olivia looked very sweet in her pretty new dress.  She was pretty tired, but managed to stay awake for a few photos (however she refused to actually look at the camera or smile). 

Yasmin gave Nazreen and I these comfy robes as part of our bridesmaid present! 
Our aunt, uncle and cousin came all the way from Australia for the wedding!  This is our cousin Kiran with his wife Jess.

We were lucky that Pop-O accompanied us to FW for the weekend and was nice enough to take Olivia back to the hotel early so she could get to sleep and stay on some-what of a schedule.  (Pop-O had an exciting/traumatizing first babysitting experience with Olivia and a "code brown" situation with her diaper.  But, he handled it like a champ and Matt & I were thrilled to come home to a clean, sleeping baby!)

Sunday was Wedding Day!  Olivia needed a bath (esp. after her situation with Pop-O) but was a little scared of the big bathtub at the hotel.  Luckily Matt brought his bathing suit so he went in to hold her.  Once he got in, she was her happy, bath-loving self!

After that, Olivia spent most of the day with daddy and Pop-O while I ran around doing wedding stuff.  But she came to the wedding and helped walk Mimi down the aisle.  Then she stuck around for a bit, but again sweet Pop-O took her back early and let the poor thing get some sleep.  We kept her up till about 8:30 that night (which is an hour past her usual bed time) and she was exhausted! 

Side note/funny story:  Yasmin got married at the FW Botanical Gardens - the Gardens close to the public at 7:00.  When Olivia left, Matt and I helped walk her out to the car.  When we came back, we realized that all of the entrances were locked!  After the people who worked there were entirely unhelpful and told us it would "take a while" to unlock the gates, we had to jump the gate and then scale a wall above a koi pond to get back in!!  I'm not kidding!  Luckily Nazreen's boyfriend Tyler came and helped us and he & Matt helped carry me over the gate (in my dress) and scale the wall! 

The morning after the wedding, our good friends the Henry family came to our hotel to eat brunch with us.  Olivia loved meeting 2 of the 4 Henry's.  We hope Olivia grows up to be just as sweet, smart and beautiful as sweet Kate (who I used to babysit when she was Olivia's age!)

It was a beautiful wedding and I hope Aunt Yasmin loved it.  Welcome to married life Aunt Yasmin! 

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Be Afraid

Olivia does not like her car seat.  And this is the face she gave me the ENTIRE way home from work just to make sure I got the point (sorry for the blurry picture - I took it with my phone when I was stopped at a light).  Message received.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Weekend o' Celebration

We had a lot to celebrate this weekend!  On Friday morning Aunt Nazreen graduated from the University of Houston with a Masters in Public Affairs.  Such a smartie!

Then on Friday afternoon, Matt graduated from Rice with his MBA.  Its been a great two years at Rice and we are so proud of all the hard work he put into the program!  He graduated with honors in the Top 10% of his class - big smartie pants!

Sunday was Mother's Day & it was an absolutely lovely day.  I got some very sweet cards and a cute picture frame with Olivia's picture in it.  We spent the day together just playing, eating, resting and going to the pool.  That night we went to my parent's house to celebrate the two grads + Mother's Day. 

The two graduates!

Dad started with a toast for basically everyone there - graduation, Mother's Day, and an upcoming wedding for Aunt Yasmin!

Aunt Nazreen also graduated in the top of her class and her GPA qualified her for "honors" status, but UH didn't award honors for her program.  So my parents gave her their own honors award!

GrandDad tried to steal Olivia's food, but she wasn't mad.  She was happy to sit on his lap while everyone else finished eating!

 Then it was time for dessert.  We had some delicious cupcakes + my mom made shot glasses out of ice, so we all had a "shot" of Godiva liqueur.  Let the wild rumpus start!

 A few photos after dessert:

Then it was time for presents.  Aunt Naz and Matt got some great stuff - but Miss Olivia seemed to enjoy the wrapping more than anyone.  Christmas is going to be fun this year!! :)

What a wonderful weekend with so many blessings and so many reasons to celebrate.  I loved my first Mother's Day & am so excited to celebrate many more!