Wonderful Arizona

45 minutes until we must pack-up the car with our mound of baby gear and leave the embrace of Arizona Sun’s AND Grandma and Grandpa Vail’s spoiling.  Why does time speed when you’re on vacation?

What a lovely week of hiking, swimming, running and golfing – Alaire participated enthusiastically in the first three!  The borrowed baby-walker seems to have zapped my little baby into an ambitious toddler.  But it’s so fun.

Alaire experienced several firsts this week including hiking up steep desert trails riding along in her Osprey hiking backpack on Daddy’s back.  Sometimes snoozing, sometimes watching the scenery, and sometimes pulling Daddy’s ear!  At one point along the trail Graham commented on her need to yank on his ear, Grandma Rita replied , “isn’t that how they steer elephants???”  I laughed hard at this symbolic statement.  Indeed, in this lifetime, Graham and I will likely be Alaire’s giant elephants…hopefully we can maintain some control.

Another first was swimming in the big swimming pool.  Her arms and legs moved and kicked naturally, a born swimmer!  She loved moter-boating and was enthralled with the bigger kids (who all wanted to touch her).  I decided it was time to give her an under-water head dunk – though surprised, she seemed  exhilarated by the new activity.

“UH-HO” is going down as her first recognizable and intentional word.  The new game of the moment is throwing toys, food and pacifier and then calling out, “uh-ho!”  This morning, she woke me up by quietly saying uh-ho from her bedroom next door.

It was also a big week for mobility!  Though her movement was tentative in her walker the first  few days of vacation, now she cruises around Grandma’s kitchen and dining room, lap after lap.  On Wednesday, Alaire took her first 3 unassisted first steps.  Though wobbly, they were indeed baby steps.  Grandpa Art served as witness.

Finally, Alaire got to meet new family!  Uncle George, Aunt Nanci and Cousin/Aunt Renee came to play while we golfed and then we enjoyed a family hike and picnic up at Madera Cannon and Friday night homemade pizza.

A million thank yous to Grandma and Grandpa for spoiling us all, thinking of all the little things and for lots of babysitting!

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