Monday, January 25, 2010

Jumping Off the Heads of Animals

Ah, I remember the good old days.
A time when Molly was thrilled with
crawling through the tunnel,

or going down the slide.

But now when we hit the perti dish mall playground,
Molly must scale...

sit on...

stand on...

and then jump off of....

the heads of the animals.

And not just the panda.
Oh no, no, no.
She must do also this one...

and this one....

and this one...

and of course, this one.

Doesn't look like the ol' slide is that thrilling anymore, does it?


Friday, January 22, 2010

Celebrations at the Gym

There is no doubt that Molly love, love, loves the gym.
So imagine her excitement when she got to cleberate
at the gym twice in one week!

The first celebration was a birthday party for.....

Molly's best buddy, Mia!

Lots of friends.

Lots of gymnastics.

And a gianormous birthday cookie...
what's not to like about this party?

The birthday girl:

The cookie consumer:

The gang:

A hug for the new four-year-old.

And did I mention that there were
green vampire teeth in the goody bag?

Moving on to celebration #2.
This one was at Molly's gym.
It was Show Week,
a time to celebrate all that Molly has learned
this semester in  gymnastics.

First up: The floor exercise.
Going into a handstand.

Finishing her routine.
I love Miss Emily's enthusiastic expression in the background.

Next up: The beam routine.
Preparing for a forward roll.

Ending in an arabesque.

Preview of an upcoming skill.
Molly's next position on the bar...
It just keeps getting more thrilling for her
and more scary for me.

Last up: bar routine.
Going into a pull up for her mount.

Press and cast.

Tummy roll dismount.
Yes, it looks just like the pull up mount.
But trust is actually a different picture and skill.

Receiving medals.

Molly's princess wave from the podium.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Sad and Wrong

Those are the words that best describe our vacation. We got to Florida on the first day of the cold spell and left Florida on the first day of the warm up. Now I ask you, where is the justice in that? It is just sad and wrong.

I have had several people say to me, "At least it was warmer in Florida that it was here at home."  My response to that, "Umm, did you spend a couple of grand to sit in the cold and freeze you a** off? I didn't think so."

Not that I am bitter or anything.

It's just that my winter beach vacation is the only thing that keeps me from going postal sane during the long, gray, cloudy, miserable, depressing, cold, horrible Midwestern winters.

But alas, I spent 2 weeks at the beach in Southern Florida where the temperature dipped to 28, hovered in the 40's and only reached around 60 degrees the.entire.time. Just sad and wrong.

For those of you who enjoy the pictures over my witty commentary, here you go:

How I Spent My Winter Vacation

A shot of the parking lot at the beach.
Does something seem to be missing?

Oh yea...OTHER CARS!
Ours was the only one there because we were
the only ones stupid enough to go to the beach.

Molly was excited.
Just look at the smile of anticipation
as she approaches the water....

Sticks her foot into the frigid Gulf of Mexico...

And gets the shock of reality as the water covers her feet.

I think this picture says it all:

Here we are pretending to have a good time
before we head back to the hotel for
hot cocoa and warmer clothes.

Another day at the beach.
Hey, this looks better...
Molly even has a swimsuit on!

And she is frolicking with the local wildlife!

Reality of the day:

Covered in towels and blankets
while eating processed cheese snacks.
Sad and wrong on a number of levels.

The one bright spot of the trip was the pool,
Which was heated to 100 degrees.

Molly spent a lot of time honing her swimming skills.
She swam this way...

and that way...

and even turned some somersaults.

She really did enjoy the pool and her swimming skills
did improve a great deal.
She could easily swim the length of the pool by herself,
was able to handle the deep end without fear,
and dove to the bottom of the pool to retrieve toys
(and I didn't even need to push her under).

One of our favorite excursions while in Naples is the Everglades.
Here's Molly, AKA the Crocodile Hunter.

Okay, we were actually looking for Alligators,
but Crocdile Hunter sounds better.
Anybody else out there miss Steve Irwin as much as I do?

Where else can you pull your car off to the side of the road,
look over the guard rail...

and see this:

or this:

or this:

Meanwhile, just another day at the beach...

Tony, the man who wears shorts in a snowstorm,
 has on a coat and gloves.
Just look at Molly's face!

And I got this new parka while on vacation.
Sad.....and wrong.

One final trip to the (deserted) beach
in our long pants.

Little kids can turn anything into a fun time (or a train wreck).

A rare family photo,
taken for us by the only other soul on the beach.

Going home.
Hasta la Vista Florida.
(Note the two layers of blankets. Brrrr.)

I must say that it was nice to spend time as a family,
sleep in every morning,
and have someone else clean and  cook for us.
Oh, and the skies were blue despite the chilly temperatures.
I guess there was a silver lining to this trip.

Not sure if it's enough to keep me
from going postal sane, though.
I'll keep you posted.
You might want to duck for cover in the meantime.
Just sayin'.