Friday, February 25, 2011

this week

has flown by. It has been a busy week which is good but also bad because I haven't been able to spend as much time with da ninj as I would have hoped. This week her daddy has winter break so he has been with her. I can tell she wears him out but she really has been so happy to have him there. She is such a happy child, her new thing is dancing with him to the "malo's" solo on the Princess Frog soundtrack. She just loves it! I left this morning with both of them dancing, just like you see on TV, spinning and holding each others hands.

On Weds he took E to da Bronx zoo. I love this pic of her in her 3d glasses, totally rocking them!! She is a real fast learner, like I said before, it just takes her seeing it once and then forget about it. So we need to be careful what we do and show her. Anthony thought it would be cute to use an umbrella as a dancing prop and I could see disaster a coming! Emma then wanted to start swinging the umbrella as if she were Annie Oakley...but the really adorable monkey see monkey do moment was this morning at breakfast. I like to eat my eggs with crunchy tortilla chips. I just like the contrasting textures. Well after I was done, Emma went over and started putting egg on her chips and eating them like me. She is too much!!!!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011


images via Claudia Sanchez

Emma started saying some cute things this past weekend. One was, "its cute" when she found a stuffed frog at Borders.

The other adorable thing is, "I'll be right back". I always tell her this when I'm trying to get her to sleep or when I go into the kitchen to get her a snack. She was out of goldfish the other day and she looked at me and said "more fish? I'll be right back" as she ran into the kitchen. She really is too much.

Finally, she started saying nononononono in rapid succession. It is hilarious and I was wondering where she got that from and then I heard myself telling her nononono and I knew. Kids really do pick up everything! Yesterday she was having a hard time falling asleep for her nap. I thought she was out and started to get up and she said "nonononono" and grabbed my hand and then pressed it into her chest so I would be spooning her. It just warmed my heart!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Book of the week, The Fantastic Mr. Wani

Itty bitty in the city

these are pics from her very first trip to the Met, 2 years ago. I should have brought my camera yesterday.

I was a little bummed that my three day weekend was turning into a three day stay at home fest, so I decided that I was going to take Emma into the city yesterday because I really wanted to go to the Met. I love period rooms and their newly renovated American Wing is my favorite spot! Not a lot of people go there so it is never crowded and I thought I would just risk taking the ninj in hopes she would fall asleep. At the last minute Ant asked if we should take the portable DVD player and at first I said no, but then I decided that we should, just in case. At this moment I would like to give a shout out to the inventors of the portable DVD player, thank you!

I do want to say that Emma did really well on the bus and subway ride into the city. She actually stayed somewhat seated. Then at the Met she is being her usual self, the one that needs to be running around like a gazelle. I was getting upset and thought it was going to be a tag team effort. I thought for sure she would have napped, but she was just too overstimulated. So I ended up putting in her stroller and whipping out the Princess Frog, letting people stare at the irony of the situation and going to the top of the American Wing where it is dark and quiet. Within 15mns she was out and we were able to look at EVERYTHING in peace. We decided to take advantage of a sleeping baby-her naps are about 3 hours, so we went to Pain Quotidian for some lunch, but I guess the cold was too much and she woke up. She was super bundled and under plastic but I guess she felt the energy of the city and couldn't be held down.

So after lunch we walked back to the subway and Emma didn't want to sit in the stroller. I told her if she wanted to walk she needed to hold onto the stroller and you know what ? She did just that!!! I was amazed how well she was walking side by side with the stroller, never letting go. After a while she didn't want to hold onto it anymore and I told her that the only way she could continue walking is if she held my hand. By golly she did it and I must say since most of the times I walk with Emma she is either screaming or going limp, it was wonderful to be walking the streets of Manhattan in a calm fashion with a civilized Emma. It was actually her first time walking the streets, she has always been in a Bjorn or stroller. I got a little emotional because her walking on her own just made me realize she really is growing up. Soon I wont need the stroller. She looked so cute I only wish I had a camera.

Anyway, it was a really nice day...nothing special but just nice.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

miracle sunday

This afternoon I shared a wonderful moment with Emma. It was around 12 pm and she was due for her nap. I also need to preface that Emma has become a huge fan of the Princess and the Frog and she loves its jazzy, rag time music the most. I ended up downloading the album for her and she sings the whole album at least twice a day. Well, I played it for her today as I was looking at some blogs and she came over and climbed on my lap and hugged me. She then requested for the "good bye" song which accompanies the credits. Now I never thought I would say the following thing as I am not a Ne Yo fan, but that song is now one of my favorites.

Emma stayed there and let me cradle her. I softly swayed her as the song played and when the next track track came on, I noticed her eyes were getting heavy and by the third song she was out. I say this with such delight because Emma is slightly hyperactive and never lets me hold her, not even as a baby. She has never enjoyed being swaddled or cradled so to have her with me, not fighting or moving, was divine. I left her there for at least 40mns and then I transferred her to her bed. Since I was in front of my computer and wanted a way to document it, I used the photo booth app and snapped a couple of pics. I'm surprised I actually came out looking kinda decent. I mean I slept in and was in my jammiees and hadn't even washed up. It was a miracle that she not only she fell asleep on me, but that the apartment in the background actually looked somewhat clean and that I was actually in the shot with her. I usually am the one behind the lens.
So once E woke up I took her to B&N and as we walked to the car I told her that we needed to hold hands. Now I must also say that it is a constant battle to get her to stay by me and give me her hand. She usually goes all limp and I end up dragging her across the street, but today she gave me her hand willingly, pressed it against her cheek and then kissed it. I was so moved by her gesture that I think I must have been glowing! I told her that I loved her and she repeated it back. She actually behaved well at the store so I'd say it was a great day.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Cupcake liners!

image via Decor8

image via flickr

image via Happy Katie

image via Amy Atlas

coffee filters make great pom poms. via creature comfort

When I was looking at new ideas for wreaths I came upon several posts that used cupcake liners as their material. I was so intrigued and taken by the endless possibilities that I wanted to round up some of my favorites. Cupcake liners can pretty much be used for any festivity or holiday. Coffee filters also make wonderful substitutes or add on for any of these projects.

need, want, one of those two

I saw these and I just squealed with delight!!! Man oh man how cute would Emma look?!
If you want one just head on over to Little Good All's etsy store.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Emma's night time comforts

such a diva pose.

Emma loves to read and at night that really is the only way she knows how to put herself down. Her new favorite books are the Seek N Find books, and she will sit there and ask herself "where's the book?", "alli esta". I went in to check on her the other night and saw that she had switched them out for some Anatole and the Cat and Chick and Pug. Those are the books she is reading this week. Last week it was Petunia and Ginger.


her first crib shoe, first walker and current shoe

evolution of her boots

I am packing some of Emma's baby items that I want to hold onto if ever there comes a number two, but since we don't have space I am sending them to Tampa. I was rounding up her shoes and just had to take these pictures. Even though the boot, second from the right, looks taller than the one to the right of it, it is actually 3 sizes smaller. Man oh man, I don't remember her feet ever being that small.


Emma used to only want bubble baths, then she was in her shower phase but only with me. As of last week I am no longer needed in the shower and then yesterday she requested a bubble bath and I must say she looked super cute under a blanket of white bubbles.

Night time

you can see that foot testing the waters


I still see you!

Ever since Emma learned how to open doors it has been an uphill battle to get her to not only sleep in her room but to say in her room. She does do the cutest thing though, where she will open the door just wide enough to stick out her foot , as a way to test the water, and then when she thinks the coast is clear she emerges. All the while I'm just watching her form my bedroom and when she sees me she does a cute jump and then slams the door shut. She will sometimes sacrifice her toys and send them out first to see if the coast is clear. All you hear is the loud thump of plastic hitting the floor. I really wish I could film her in action but it all comes down to timing and with her you just never know. Here are some pics of her trying to make a break.


Well almost spring! I have been craving the sight and sound of spring for a while now. My honey for V-day really spoiled me. The day started with me receiving a really lovely flower arrangement at my work. They were not your typical Valentine's red hued bouquet but rather a very springy shade of yellow. When I was at TJs the other day I was inspired to pick up some more flowers, as I really do love fresh flowers in the house. I saw a bunch of hyacinths in purple and pink and I grabbed some of the pink ones. The buds were still closed but the next day they began to open and they filled the apartment, well kitchen, with such a pleasant aroma. What I love about hyacinths is how long they can last. I need to go back to TJs and grab some more.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Pictures from Emma's hall pass night!

as Claudia put it, "two geniuses at work"

channeling her inner Pollock

getting booked for petty theft at the Rego Park B&N

such a dainty meal for a dainty girl

look Uncle B, why don't you send some of those beans my way. I know you ain't gonna finish them!

I could get used to this

somebody partied a little too hard with tita

wowowowo, she's a lady

Here are some hilarious pics that accompany Claudia's earlier post. They are just too much in a good way!

Makes me want to go back and reshoot my childhood

this is what I picture Emma will grow up to be-sassy!

My friend posted this link on her FB yesterday and I found it so amusing. Photographer Irina Werning is working on this ongoing project called Back to the Future where she asks her subjects to recreate their childhood photos. I love photographing Emma in clothes that were mine and then placing them next to my own baby pics, but this is takes it to a whole new level. I think I'm going to have a lot of fun during Easter break this year!!! Now to get to finding all those pictures!

Guest blogger Claudia Sanchez-who must have watched Emma's alter alter ego, Princesa Emma

Michelle and I have been friends since pursuing a love of photography back in college in 1999. Among some of the other passions we mutually worshipped at the time included but were not limited to: music, cheap beer, Taco Bell, 80’s dance night, cute boys and cigarettes. After college graduation and through life’s rhythmic ebb and flow, we were separated, reunited, separated and then reunited once again. It was during our most recent “reunion” more than two years ago that I discovered she was pregnant. I suppose part of me expected to see her as the camera-toting gal with the cigarette gingerly secured in-between her lips who could bust a move to classic Depeche Mode. Who I saw before me was a glowing, waddling, slow-moving mother-to-be with a big belly and a fervent anticipation in the bright of her eyes. This was not the Michelle I had left back in Tampa. This was not the girl I had shared all night dance and beer benders with “back in the day”…no. Though she was no longer that girl, the woman I received in exchange was far better.

Seeing Michelle transition into motherhood with the nervous naïveté of a first time mom was both endearing and heartbreaking. Never before had I seen my college friend care with such adoration, patience and thoughtful concern for another. I had always known she had a kind and loving heart, but to bear witness to the awakening of her motherly instincts was an entirely delightful surprise. As little Emma grew into the crime fightin’, hell raisin’, tobacco chewin’, rule breakin’ Ninj you read about on this blog, so did Michelle’s maternal confidence and self-assurance. It could not be any more evident in Emma’s poise and stride that she is a happy and determined little being. Graced with a kind demeanor and a self-sufficient attitude that is both comical and admirable, it is no wonder she is the product of two loving parents who are clearly getting something right.

Michelle and I spend a good deal of our days inventing fictitious scenarios in which characters and places are terrorized by Emma’s alter ego lovingly known as Da Ninj. These stories have the capacity to make us break into spontaneous fits of hysterics, coloring our otherwise gray, insipid days at our desk jobs a bright shade of Valentino red. If Emma only knew, she would downright disown us both for having so many laughs at her expense. But to know this little girl is to love and embrace all her antics, curiosities and tom foolery. Given her lively personality it was no wonder that Michelle had an overabundance of reservation about leaving Emma in our care this past Saturday evening. She feared not that we would care for her improperly…rather she feared that Emma would send us running to the hills, knees quivering in fear of the wrath of Da Ninj.

Of course it should not come as a surprise that Emma behaved beautifully. It was a joy hearing her speak random Spanish vocabulary words at the sight of them during our viewing of The Princess and the Frog. When hearts popped up on the screen she would excitedly announce, “Corazon!”…or when the moon appeared, she would point to the TV and say “Luna”. She gave no hint of fuss or annoyance when we turned off the TV to sit for dinner even though the movie had not ended. Emma gladly pulled out her chair and sat down to eat her meal like a little lady. She even waited patiently while I went to the kitchen to get her a second helping of rice and beans. You might not think anything of it, but for a two year old child, this shows incredible restraint. Once she finished her dinner, she insisted on bringing her dish and utensils to the kitchen so that I could put them in the sink. If she was taller, I’m certain she would have placed them in there herself.

Emma colored, sang, rode her Goofy stuffed animal as if it were Bullseye from Toy Story, and gave us spontaneous hugs and kisses. Surprisingly, she did not seem interested in terrorizing Stinky and Da Diggs, our resident furry feline chitlins whose claws we had trimmed earlier in the day in preparation for Emma’s arrival. Aside from an initial gentle stroking of Stinky’s fur minutes after her entrance, she seemed rather disinterested in both cats. Stinky might have hissed at her a couple of times when she ran past him like a bat outta hell. Digger on the other hand made sporadic appearances. Being the true ‘scaredy cat’ that he is, he spent most of the evening hiding in the bathroom behind the safety of the tub’s vinyl curtain.

Though my husband Brian can become a bit awkward around kids, I could easily tell that Emma was in his good graces. Aside from her charm, she happens to be a very good listener and would heed Brian’s request to back up from the TV since she enjoys watching television two inches from the screen. Of course we both had to repeat this numerous times throughout the evening as she was convinced she was pulling a fast one on us by slowly creeping up to the screen in tiny increments, as if certain we wouldn’t notice. How can you not love the kid for trying?

As the night progressed I could tell Emma was tiring though she consistently fought her sleep. Sheer exhaustion finally prevailed causing her little eyes to rest in peaceful slumber after we had read a handful of her books several times. Watching her sleep in such stillness and with such careless abandon gave me pause to think about how amazing it is that she came to be and how we are all the better because of it.

Michelle and I will always have the memories and the photos documenting our days of carefree youth, boundless energy and unadulterated freedom. Those days will forever be a part of our shared history. But the beauty of the present is the exciting story currently in the making as we witness all that unfolds in the sound of Emma’s laughter, the new vocabulary words she carefully pronounces and the promise of the love that she freely shares from that tiny little heart. I know she’s not mine, but if I had a child, I’d want one just like her. Kudos, Michelle and Anthony. You have plenty reason to be proud.

And as for Da Ninj…well, we’ll just have to see where life on the lam will lead her. No doubt she’ll be breakin’ hearts, breakin’ kneecaps and takin’ no prisoners.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Book of the Week-I'm Not

I'm Not by Pam Smallcomb and illustrated by Robert Weinstock is a really sweet tale that will teach children to not only be confident with who they are, but to see that a true friendship celebrates one's differences rather than focusing on them. This story starts with a little unnamed alligator girl who is always comparing herself to her best friend Evelyn. Evelyn can apparently do anything and everything much better than the narrator, thus making her feel less interesting.Eventually the story shifts, and the narrator's "I'm nots" are read in a positive light when she learns that unlike Evelyn, she is not afraid of the dark and is not a bad speller. This book highlights how a person should hone in on their talents rather than dwell on their shortcomings in such a manner that is accessible to children but never preachy. Children will also learn the importance of a "true blue" friend and what matters most in a friendship.

Tea time

she's a nut

pink up!

Her going in for the kill

and swiping poor Goofy's treats

even Bullseye gets in on the action

I love holidays and I love making my little girl feel extra special on those days. My mom always had small treats for us, whether it was stickers or a stuffed animal. This year we may have gotten a little crazy with E but we both found these great items independent of each other. I actually found mine in Tampa during Xmas break at the Pottery Barn Kids. It is the cutest little doll table set that usually goes for 40 bucks but was on sale for $20 plus I had a 10 dollar coupon. I always observe E and try to see what new things she is into. I had noticed that was starting to sit her dolls on chairs and trying to change their "yuck yucks" and so forth, so when I saw the table and chairs I knew it was perfect. Ant found all of the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse characters that work perfectly with her camper a couple of weeks ago. Needless to say she loved them both, but I feel Ant may have won. She LOVES Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.
Anyway, Emma and I had a little tea party yesterday with Minnie and Goofy. Last week her sitter told me she had a tea party with Emma and I wanted to cry because I was waiting to have Emma's first tea party with her over the weekend with her new set. I felt so crushed that E's first tea party was not with me. Well, last night I filled four plates with some goldfishes and little by little Emma started swiping both Goofy and Minnie's snacks. It was really cute to watch because Emma always knows when she is doing something she is not supposed to. Her movements slow down and you see you looking out of the corner of her eye to make sure you are not watching her. She is a punk and I love her!