Saturday, August 21, 2010

Life's A Beach

I grew up on this beach Max.

Bonfires, late-night walks with friends, watching your Uncle Scottie surf here.

You had a chance to take your first "sand steps" when we visited San Diego, and with your little cargo shorts and your hoodie, I think that you could pass for a local....

At 16, I could never have imagined that I would walk hand in hand with this little boy, on this beach. But oh, how thankful I am that we are here.
We watched how the ocean goes on forever.....

And we saw how the waves never stop crashing onto shore....
We took in some ocean air with a true local, your beautiful Auntie Katie.....

And she wrote your name in the sand. Just like we wrote her name in the sand, when she was small like you, and we brought her to our beach for the very first time.

And we sandwiched you between Mommy and Daddy, and introduced you to the ocean (sorry you're sideways!)

Daddy told you all about swimming, and I think I heard him say something about girls in bikinis too?!
Don't worry, I know that part is between you boys!
I'm glad that you're learning to like the beach Max.....
Because we have some beach days in our future.....
I think we look pretty good with the ocean this close, don't you?

Wind in our hair, salty beach air on our lips.....geez....maybe we should find a beach house??? :)

That sounds like a good plan. See you soon Ocean!!!!

Thursday, August 19, 2010


Little Max,

You are Mommy's best. As I watch you grow, I am amazed every day with how sharp your mind is, and how kind your heart is.

A few weeks ago you were playing with sweet little Chloe, and after chasing each other around for a while, you walked slowly up to her, looked her in the eye, put your hand over her heart, and did the sign for "love". I melted. Chloe's mommy melted. And even though Chloe is only 1 (like you), I think that she might have melted just a little too.

We are growing a boy who is kind, and that makes Mommy so very proud.

You often walk up to your friends, crouch down a little and then look up into their eyes. And then you say "Hi" in your tiny voice. You let them know that you are there.

You give the best hugs too. And it makes Mommy and Daddy swell with joy, because we know that we have taught you to love. You like to hug our arms when we change your diaper, our legs when we stand up, and our backs when you sneak up behind us. You hug all of your "stuffies"....Frank, Fluffy, Scout....sometimes you get so overwhelmed with love that you even hug your bottle or the remote control ;)

You have so much to tell us too. You have started to use your words, and it makes Mommy laugh when you actually respond to my questions! I've been thinking out loud to you for 14 months now (actually, for much longer...I used to talk to you when you were in my belly!), but now, you talk back! When I say "Max, do you want to take a bath?" you walk to the stairs, point up, and say "Uhh" (that's your word for "up"). The other day you carried your big George around upstairs, and every time you dropped him you would say "Dow" (down). You say "Hi", and "Dah" (Dog), and of course every form of "Daddy/Dada/Dad" that you can. The other night when Daddy kissed you before bedtime, you waved "bye bye" to him and then said "Nigh-nigh". When I say "Ready, Freddy...", you finish with "Go!" And you make us laugh with your sweet "Hi Dada" and of course, "No Mama!" When we were at the park yesterday, and I said "Let's go bye-bye. Bye Bye park!" you said "NO!" and tried to climb up the stairs to the slide so that I couldn't grab you! You are very willful my little Max, and I'm glad that you can speak your mind (at least for now!)

You like to do a silly little dance where you stick your hips out and jump forward. I laughed out loud so hard I cried the first time you did it, and Pop-Pop was lucky enough to see some of it on Skype too!
You're learning to blow kisses, though as Uncle Scott found out, it's more like blowing spit! You like to applaud when other people are clapping, and you do all the moves for "When You're Happy and You Know It", even before Mommy does them. You know where your tummy is, and your toes, and your teeth.
You are the sunshine in my days, and you are my best. Now, when I am holding you and we visit somewhere new, you cling to my body when I try to put you down. Your little legs wrap tightly around my waist, and you stay with me until you feel comfortable with where we are. I love that you are taking things in slowly. And then, step by step, you venture out to play. You explore in a radius that grows a little more each day, and then you toddle back to me, for one more cuddle.

You are my best Little Max.



Monday, August 9, 2010

Road Trip! The Beginning....

I said I'd never do it. 8-10 hours in a car with a 14 month old? The week before we left, one of the Mommy Friends asked, in a very concerned tone, "Were plane tickets just too expensive?" She couldn't fathom why I'd pack up the fam and willingly subject myself to putting a very active toddler in a carseat for longer than a trip to the grocery store. Especially when Max's new trick is to grab the straps of his carseat and try to yank them off of his body, all while yelling "OWWWWWWWWWWWW!". Which is Max-Speak for "out".

Well little Max, we survived. Turns out, you are an amazingly adaptable road-tripper. We actually had a great, me, Daddy, and the open road. On the first day you napped pretty much all the way to SLO. That's a special spot for Mommy, because it's her college town, and truly, it's where her "grown-up life" began. Mommy met Aunt Susie here, and well, the rest is history. If it weren't for Yosemite Hall 13C, we never would have known Aunt Susie, Uncle Matt, and little Jack. So many wonderful friends have become "family" because of the new beginnings that I had in this little town. And I probably would never have met your Daddy. So really, it's a special place for YOU too.

We said hello to SLO-town by visiting a few of Mommy's old haunts. Hey Aunt Sus....remember this place??? For all you non-locals, this "Library" doesn't actually have any books in it..

After a tour of downtown, we went to a park by the little blue house that I used to live in, and Max got acquainted with this tunnel....

When I was in college, my mom and Susie's mom used to stay at The Apple Farm Inn when they came to visit us. It was pretty special to come back and stay there with my two favorite boys....

Max went for a little drive in this trolley car.... And then the next day, we were off again! Little Max, you took another loooong nap in the car, and when you woke up we were in Manhattan Beach! Your Great Grandma Betty and Great Grandpa Mel met us for lunch, and you were so happy to get some smiles and snuggles in with them!

After that, we packed ourselves back into the car, and headed South. Stay tuned for more pictures from the First Annual Simon Family Road Trip Adventure!