Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Summer with Miss Layla

Well, summer is full-on here in Seattle, which means it totally stopped raining and gets above 70F every once in a while. For the first time since I was a kid, I can't WAIT until it gets above 70F so we can bust out to the pool, the neighborhood wading pool, or the beach (we can get to the Puget Sound inlet from our house, it isn't the ocean but it's saltwater and beautiful). Layla LOVES it and now so do we. On days that it doesn't get above 70 (which are a lot) we go to the indoor pool and totally wear ourselves out. Members of our baby group (8 families all with kids the same age) are joining us more often than not and helping create more fun.

Layla has started to go to bed later and later (her bedtime is now 8 pm) and it's a whole new routine - we've been leaving work a little later, taking turns putting her to bed (I recently started going to an evening yoga class, which has been awesome), eating dinner as a family more, going out  at night to BBQs and parks (something we could never do before), but also the Studly Hubby and I have a little less time to ourselves which takes some adjusting to.

Layla has changed so much over the past month. She has taken the super-hyper-crazy down a few notches and is finally calming down a bit (although she's still on the super-hyper-crazy side, don't get me wrong). She is sitting still for up to 20 minutes at a time (40 the other night!!!) to watch a little TV (she switches preference but is currently coming off of Dora and heading into Backyardigans). She'll also cuddle every once in a while, play on her own in a rare moment, or sit down and have a whole conversation (dinner is SO much more pleasant, and we're finally finding out what she does at daycare all day!). She says all kinds of crazy things to us and a lot of them we can't really track down from anywhere so she must be dreaming them up herself - it's so weird to have her putting together her own ideas and then sharing them with us. Speaking of, she is REALLY into imaginary play and invests a lot of time and energy making up and acting out situations with us like getting a hair cut (including a final spray with pink hair dye, where did she get that idea?), buying ice cream (she likes to give us money, then give us ice cream, in flavors like 'pink' and 'purple'), and throwing a birthday party (she'll spend a half an hour trying to find adequate party hats for each of us and passing around pretend birthday cake). What we find especially endearing is that some of her favorite things are our favorites too (ice cream, the farmer's market, the wading pool, sushi, legos) and therefore easy to accommodate. Some things are totally of her own preference, however, like eating lavender and rosemary out of the garden (constantly), scooting on her scooter, and trying on other people's shoes.

Another thing Layla really really enjoys is cavorting around naked or in totally ridiculous outfits (like a cape and her swimsuit, or one of my tank tops). We spend most of each morning convincing her to wear SOMETHING that's decent and if we succeed we often have to race her up to the daycare immediately after or risk her changing her mind. To make things worse we keep confusing her by taking her to clothing-optional events like the famous naked bike ride and Solstice Parade in our neighborhood (hey, it's Seattle). From the many hilarious questions we got afterwards, we suspect she was carefully thinking the whole thing through for a while.

As for the Studly Hubby and I, we've been busy like two worker bees this spring/summer. We've been alternating going out of town (me: San Francisco, Michigan; him: Texas, then London) in between finishing up enormously time-consuming projects at each of our respective jobs. We've been coping - we're using the discounted nanny service provided by his work, scheduling play dates to keep Layla occupied, keeping things fairly simple at home (this is where renting is nice!), and before Layla's bedtime recently moved back we were putting in lots of productive work-nights. But, a few things have been suffering: the blog (sorry!), the extended family (again, sorry!) and our houseplants (hang in there, you can make it!). Hopefully things will slow down later this summer but I doubt it - we still have several family trips coming up (yay!) as well as lots of summer-y weekend plans. But, at least it's all fun stuff.

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