At the Park with Mommy


Elena and Emma have been spending a lot of time at the park lately. Emma likes to blow bubbles, kick the soccer ball, go down the slide, and ride the swing. Emma is signing more and more these days. Words like “dog”, “bird”, “flower”, “apple” “ball”, and “duck” have made their way into her vocabulary which she signs frequently when she sees them at the park. She is like a little sponge these days and will also sign words Elena and I use while we are having a conversation. She is like a little interpreter for the hearing impaired.


Emma enjoys playing with her shovel but doesn’t like to get sand on her hands. She gets this from her Daddy. 🙂 In this picture Emma has fallen down and refuses to touch the sand to pick herself up. The look of dissatisfaction is aimed toward her Mother who is encouraging her to stand up on her own. In cases like this, Emma prefers to be rescued without soiling her fingers.

Elena’s Birthday


On January 13th we celebrated Elena’s 37th Birthday. We had dinner at O’Charleys in Raleigh, North Carolina with Elena’s cousin Pititi and his family. Emma met her beautiful twin cousins, Jackie and Alex for the first time. Both are the most loving, well-behaved children you could ever meet. It was nice to see them after so many years. We look forward to seeing and spending more time with them in the future.


In five days Emma will be 15 months old. She is quite mobile and surprisingly fast for a creature of her size. Her verbal skills are still extremely limited and has a five word vocabulary (“was-is”, “dadadadada”, “nana”, “clock”, “cup”). Despite this she can sign at least 17 different signs (“milk”, “vegetables”, “bath”, “potty”, “banana”, “bear”, “cheese”, “water”, “diaper”, “more”, “train”, “all done”, “bubbles”, “me”, “I love you”, “hi”, “bye”) and can process simple commands like “give the doll to daddy”, or “put the paper in the garbage”. She is quite fascinated by the trash can and despite our strict rules against her touching it, will deposit random items in it when we are not looking. So far a shoe, and a toy has found its way to the bottom of the receptacle. It’s only a matter of time before our coveted TiVO remote is sent to an early grave at the bottom of a landfill. Little by little I am starting to feel like a Dad. I wish it would have been a more immediate feeling but for Dads I believe it takes a little bit longer before you feel like you matter in the eyes of your child. Today was a fine example of that. When I returned from work and opened the first of a pair of doors I use to enter my house, I heard the pitter-patter of little feet hurrying to greet me. When I opened the second door, Emma was standing on the other side with the brightest little smile. She had heard the garage open and recognized that the sound she had heard meant that Daddy was home. It’s moments like that that make me feel like a million bucks.