Happy 3rd Birthday, our sweet little man, Liam Michael!
We love you SO much & are so proud of the strong individual you are becoming. It is definitely amazing to watch you grow right before our very eyes. Many times, I wish I could freeze time & hold you tight just a little longer before you take that next forward 🙂 …you are the light Mommy & Daddy’s lives!
A few nights ago, we sat down & “interviewed” Mr. Liam. That was pretty fun. He was both very thoughtful & serious with his answers. HA! We are going to start doing that from now on each year on his birthday.
I found this FREE printable interview sheet here via Pinterest (my fav!).
Other notable things these days….
1. He has started to do “pretend play” with his toys. He will talk to (or among) his toys as he is playing. Cutest darn thing. You can hear him making up stories now as he is playing.
2. He wants to do everything himself… or at least try. Makes for some difficult decisions, at times, but we manage. Gone are the days when I can pick out his outfits, too (insert my sad face…LOL).
3. Most recently, we have entered what I’ve been calling the “why” phase. He has started asking “why” to EVERYthing. Since we don’t want to diminish his inquisitiveness, we are answering him as best we can, but oh my gosh, dude….sometimes, it’s just because we said so 🙂
Thanks to my obsession with Pinterest, we put a bunch of balloons in his room last night while he was sleeping and streamers on his door so he had something fun to wake up to this morning. He also got his present from us — his 1st watch (he had requested that).
When he came into our room this morning after waking up, he said: “Santa brought me balloons & a present” ….hahahaha! That was so cute!
Lots of fun planned for this little man the next few days. I’m sure he’ll be all tuckered out by the end of the weekend 😉
This post has been a long time in the making. Mainly because it took me forEVER to get all these pics & videos off my phone & organized 🙂 …However, I really wanted to share the journey we had a few months back of Liam learning to swim. It really was quite the experience — fun, tiring (for ALL of us), hard work for him, for sure, & at times, emotional for this mama.
We started lessons on Monday, April 7th & he finished the program on Thursday, June 4th. In our area of town, there’s a few companies that we could have selected. Obviously, some might say, why not just teach him yourself & save a few bucks…..Well, good point, I guess, but we just didn’t feel comfortable doing that. Florida is surrounded by bodies of water. We wanted him to be taught life saving skills in the water. In a split second the unthinkable could happen. We wanted him to be prepared for that, and bottom line — We don’t feel that you can put a price on your child’s life. Teaching him these skills was just too important to us, so we made it happen.
We were thrilled that we could get him onto the schedule with SwimSprout. This is THE most fabulous group of ladies, and I am saying that because I am a happy mama whose child can now swim…not because anyone asked me to say that. Liam loves these ladies, and even two months since he finished lessons and he is still asking to go to Ms. Heidi’s house for swim lessons when I pick him up from school. To me, that tells you something special 🙂
What Liam was taught over the 9 week period that he went for lessons (our schedule was extended because of weather delay’s & sickness) was basic water safety & survival. I feel like I could write you a book about all that Ms. Heidi & Ms. Katie taught us, but I’m not the expert in all that jazz, so if you’re interested in it for your little one, please go to their website or link to their private Facebook group from their site. If you’re not in our area, you can find more info by searching Infant Self-Rescue.
Now, for the good stuff! Here’s some highlights from our swimming adventures 🙂
Our lessons started with correcting Liam’s posture in the water from us using one of those puddle jumper vests all last summer. Oops! We honestly had no idea that it was actually “bad” to use that and does nothing to teach a child life saving skills if they fall in a pool without it on. You just don’t think about it. Lesson learned! 😉
It was a running joke that Liam would smile & say “yes” to anything that Ms. Katie or Ms. Heidi asked of him. Hilarious! Besides the first day or two, this kid never cried. He loved it!
The puddle jumper vest just allowed him to kinda float along in the water and not use his legs, so it was hard to get him to start kicking at first and get moving. Here’s some early video of that process….
Once we got his feet moving, we couldn’t get them to stop 🙂 — part of learning to float is having what Ms. Katie called, “quiet toes” — Liam did not like having quiet toes…lol, as you can see in this clip below:
Once he got the floating down, he was taught to roll from his back into the water and swim again. Essentially, putting the whole process together was called swim/float/swim. Here’s a clip when it first clicked and he put it all together — then, in a rare moment for him, he got ticked off at the end 😉
Toward the end of his lessons, he got to be quite the strong swimmer and got awesome at holding his breath. Almost, too good! Ms. Katie had to keep putting him further and further away from the steps because he kept reaching them so fast AND not rolling over onto his back to take a breath….what a stinker!
June 4th was his swim test day & he did great! I think it was harder for us to watch than anything. I video-taped it, but it’s a looong video & the lighting is terrible so I chose not to post. Instead, here’s a clip of little man from just over a month ago. We are proud that he is still swimming strong & having fun in the pool. On this day, he wanted to swim in the deep end with Daddy 🙂
What a great experience this has been for our entire family!! We can’t wait to catch up with Ms. Heidi & Ms. Katie in the fall for a refresher session.
Last year, for his 2nd birthday, we opted for his 1st trip to the Magic Kingdom instead of a big party. It was magical day….
**I can’t believe how tall he’s gotten since last year looking at these pictures! Wow **
He had fallen at school a few days before our Disney trip so you can see the nice goose egg right smack in the middle of his forehead for most of these picks. Oh well 🙂 …
I remember it was so hot last year trekking around the park. I don’t know if we were more crazy or brave for doing that, but we had a blast. You can check out the 2-part original post from our trip here & here.
Lots of fun is planned for next week!!! Can’t wait to share it with you all! ❤
This little man is like a sponge when it comes to learning. In the midst of playing this weekend, I asked him if he could still count to 10 in Spanish for me and this is what he rattled off…..
We were honestly astounded that this little tike counted all the way to TWENTY!! I’m not even sure he could make it all the way to twenty in English but he’s got Spanish down pretty good. Thank you to his teacher, Ms. Laura, as this accomplishment is definitely due to her skill 🙂
We spent some time Sunday afternoon playing picasso out back with chalk. He was drawing rivers with sharks in them….because ya know, that’s how we roll 😉
We ended our weekend by celebrating National Ice Cream Day with a tasty cone! Yummy!!
In continued celebration of my Grampy’s birthday this week, I thought it would be fun to share pictures of his birthday party from two years ago — 2012. This was when we had just moved him out of the house he shared with my Grammy & into his own apartment in the retirement community where he still lives. He quickly made friends there and we had a large group gather together that day to enjoy his cake with us. It was a really nice afternoon. Liam was just shy of his 1st birthday that day, as well. Look at that face….I could just eat him up 🙂
Today, I would like to wish my Grampy a VERY Happy 89th Birthday!!
I am so thankful that are we able to create wonderful new memories with him. For those of you who know, the last few years have been rather difficult since my Grammy passed & we figured out that he was progressing with Dementia. It’s gotten worse more recently, and I give huge kudos to my mom for taking such great care of him. It’s definitely not an easy task on a day-to-day basis.
However, we had a great afternoon with him on Sunday to celebrate his birthday, and I was thrilled that he was feeling good and seemed to really remember everyone. We took him out to lunch and met up with his sister, Frieda and her two daughters (his nieces).
Liam colored a picture on his own birthday card for Grampy. It was really cute. We all know you can’t make an almost 3 year old do anything he doesn’t want to do, so it was awesome that he said yes to me when I asked him if he wanted to color a picture, and then he told me when he was done 🙂
This was our group picture taken at lunch. It came out really awesome!
The last few times that we have visited with Grampy, I have asked Liam to take a picture with Grampy but he has been too shy. So, I didn’t force. Let me just tell you that he was very loving and affectionate to Grampy on Sunday. It was awesome!! I know that in those moments it really made Grampy feel special. It warmed our hearts! I am treasuring this picture. When we brought Grampy back to his apartment that afternoon, Liam even went over to him and gave him a hug & a kiss all on his own. It was adorable ❤
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, GRAMPY!! WE LOVE YOU!
So, I was a little behind last week with my posts & didn’t get a chance to put up our 4th of July pictures. After much debate about where to go to catch fireworks, we ended up going back to Lake Eola & it was a great time for us, again….despite the rainy afternoon. Thankfully, all that cleared up just in time for the sun to go down 🙂
Here is me & my little man hanging out on our blanket and waiting for the festivities to begin.
Even though Liam has seen fireworks on tv several times since we saw them here last year, in person, nothing compares to the BOOM you experience live…well, it scared our little guy at first this year. This picture shows that emotion. I actually think it turned out pretty sweet. After a few minutes he settled down and sat up and watched the rest of the show. Afterwards, he said he had a good time and liked it 🙂
It really was a good show!
Hope everyone’s July is off to a good start….can you believe we are already half way to August?!?! Where is the summer going?? Crazy!!
This little gem is one of my all time fav videos of our little man. It was taken when he was 1 1/2 years old (Feb 25th ’13), and this was before his vocab really took off. So, this is his rendition, at the time, of singing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. That was one of his fav songs at the time and we had been trying our darnedest to get this on film up to this point, so this was a VERY exciting moment.
When I was looking at this video last night, Liam walked up to the computer and looked over at me after watching for a second and said, “he’s cute!” ….hahaha!!! 🙂 …he totally didn’t realize that was him! LOVE IT ❤ …I then told him that was him as a baby and he was like, “yeah” and walked away. Typical.
In honor of our upcoming Independence Day holiday tomorrow, I thought it would be fun to take a look back at the last few 4th of July’s with our little man 🙂
Today is actually “Red, White & Blue” day at school, so here’s a quick pic of him before school this morning…
Liam celebrated his 1st firecracker holiday when he was just shy of his 1st birthday. Wasn’t this just yesterday?
Last year, 2013, we were inching towards birthday number 2! We decided to venture out to Lake Eola for his 1st experience seeing fireworks. It was magical. He is already talking about it for tomorrow night 🙂
(notice an old friend, paci, in this one above? ….I have to tell you this quick story…..While looking for a lost train over the weekend, Daddy found a random paci on the floor way in the back under Liam’s bed. When we did the great paci purge, I thought I had gotten to all of them, but this little booger escaped me, apparently. He was gonna just toss it, but I told him to let Liam see it. Liam’s reaction was priceless. He started to laugh & was like, “Daddy found a paaciiii…hahahaha!!!” We asked him to throw it out & he promptly walked over to the kitchen garbage & tossed it in. Nice one! …Was I secretly a LITTLE sad that he wasn’t sad or missing it?? …I shall never tell 😉 )