Monday, October 27, 2008

Zoo Boo!

On Sunday, we got together with our neighbors, Dave, Jessica and Emma and took Merrilee to the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore for "Zoo Boo!" Our Merrilee was all dressed up in her ladybug costume...

And she loved the trip into the pumpkin patch with Emma...

It was perfect weather for a trip to the zoo and she really liked all the sights, sounds, and yes, even the smells...

We had lunch at the zoo too -- nachos, hot dogs, drinks, and popcorn -- and that was just for the adults. We had packed Merrilee's lunch and brought it with us...

Merrilee loved all of the animals, especially the elephants...

And the penguins...

And the big giraffes...

It was a fun day, but exhausting, and Merrilee was sound asleep before we were off the zoo grounds...

A Party To Welcome Merrilee!

Before we even had our referral for Merrilee, we knew we were going to have a "meet the baby" party for our family, friends, neighbors, and co-workers. So, this Saturday, we had a few people meet us at Matthews 1600 for some light fare and some drinks. Thanks to Al, Lori, Todd and Alison for making the room look so nice and for having a great atmosphere ready for us. We truly appreciate all of the folks who took the time to come visit. Some of you, we don't get to see that often. Tom and Heidi, Mark and Barb, Smoke, Merrilee (the elder) and Tom...we're so glad you could join us. Nicole -- we think Merrilee took a real shine to your little Alex. Mark and Libby and Randy and Angel -- you were the trailblazers before us and an inspiration as we traveled to China. It was good to have Bea and Jessica, and we'll all be happy when Steve is feeling even better following his recent surgery. We're sorry we couldn't spend more time with each of you, but we hope you enjoyed meeting our little girl. We really feel blessed that we have such a cute, bright and sociable little girl in our family. Here are some pictures from the party. Again, thanks to everyone!






















Monday, October 20, 2008

Pumpkin Time

This was a busy weekend for Merrilee.

She made her first visit to Wegman's on Saturday. We think she was a bit overwhelmed by the sheer size of the place. While we were eating lunch, she kept turning around to wave to the little boy a few tables away. She really does like being around other people, and she's not shy at all.

After Wegman's, it was off to pumpkin shop at Valley View Farms. Mark and Beth have a Christmas Eve tradition. Every year, they go to Valley View Farms while Dave Durian is doing his annual fundraising drive for the WBAL Radio Kids Campaign. Now, we think an annual visit for pumpkins will become part of our lives too...




We all had a great time. Merrilee loved all the pumpkins and she picked out a few that are now living on our front porch. While we were shopping, we met another couple with a little girl from China. They were so nice. We swapped email addresses with them, and we're likely to see them again in the future. Having a child from China seems to be a universal bond for all of the parents who have been through the experience.

Thanks to Kim, Andy and the kids for babysitting Saturday night. Beth and Mark got to have a quiet dinner at Della Notte in Little Italy to celebrate their 8th anniversary.

On Sunday, Mark and Merrilee went to visit grandma Alma. We took her some tarts from the local bakery, and stopped to pick up some flowers.

Now, Merrilee is anxiously looking forward to "trick or treating" and to spending a few days with daddy while mommy's away in Atlanta the end of the month.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Fairies And Ron Smith

When we got home from China, our neighbors across the street, Jessica, Dave and Emma, had left a present for Merrilee. It was a little screened tent -- the Disney Fairies tent. We now pop it up in the living room, and Merrilee loves to go inside. She loves to wrap the tent flap around her face. It's hard snapping a good photo, because every time she is close to the camera, Merrilee wants to wave...


And a really funny thing happened tonight. Mark was walking through the room when he heard a familiar sound. He looked over and there was Merrilee staring at the TV and dancing...


Now look closely. What she was dancing to was the WBAL Radio commercial on the TV! Merrilee just loves the music in the commercial. She especially likes the part promoting Baltimore's "Voice of Reason" Ron Smith...

Kudos to WBAL's creative and talented Executive Producer Mike Wellbrock. He was the one who dreamed up the concept for the spot, and more importantly in Merrilee's eyes, he's the one who picked the music!

We know one thing for certain. Merrilee already has EXCELLENT taste in her choice of radio stations. Arbitron -- are you listening? Send her a diary!

Our Trip To Obrycki's

I mentioned in the last post that we went to Obyricki's Sunday when we had some friends in town. Obrycki's is one of those legendary crab restaurants in Baltimore. It doesn't matter whether you're a businessman or a tourist, when you go to Obrycki's and order crabs, you get to wear one of their paper bibs.

Well, Merrilee is too young for steamed crabs, but she's not too young for one of their bibs. This has quickly become one of daddy's favorite pictures of Beth and Merrilee...

Our friends Scott and Lynn were here in Baltimore for part of the weekend. They make the perfect couple, and we are fortunate to have them as friends...

We're looking forward to more visits with Scott and Lynn, and we can't wait until Merrilee is old enough for her first trip to Orlando to visit them and to enjoy Disney World.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Mommy's Day

For every daddy's day, there is a mommy's day. And mommy's day usually means shopping.

One day last week, Beth and Merrilee spent part of their day at the Columbia Mall. It's one of our favorite places and home to the closest L.L. Bean store. You can see while daddy was hard at work, mommy was shopping like crazy. Note all the shopping bags hanging from the stroller...

Merrilee really is becoming more and more comfortable every day in her new home. She is so happy most of the time. When she's hungry, she let's us know by going right over to her high chair...

And she's getting really good at letting us know when she has to go to the potty. A couple of times this weekend she went over to it when she had to go.

Merrilee loves playing with eyeglasses. Here's a recent photo with our friend, Al Parsons, at Matthews 1600. Merrilee really loves going there, and all of the staff is so nice to us.


We had a terrific weekend visiting with our friends Scott and Lynn from Orlando. Scott works for Disney and was in town on business the last few days. His wife, Lynn, flew up Saturday, and we were able to have dinner with them on Sunday. We've know them since before we got married. In fact, they were among the handful of people we invited to our wedding (which, by the way, was at Disney...) Dinner was at a Baltimore landmark -- Obrycki's restaurant. Scott and Lynn had never had Maryland steamed crabs before. It was a lot of fun picking away at them and enjoying the good conversation and getting caught up. (Pictures from dinner coming soon.)

Mark is in New York tonight, and comes back on Tuesday. Beth is holding down the fort in Baltimore. More bonding time for mommy and baby, and more "missing you" time for daddy.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Daddy's Day

Beth had to work today, so this was Mark's first shot at getting Merrilee ready for day care.

We were up at 5 a.m. and Beth was out the door shortly after Merrilee got up around 6. After a trip to the potty, it was a breakfast of oatmeal with strawberries, a banana, yogurt, and apple juice. Despite the face, she loved her breakfast...

Then, it was one of those "is that all I get?" looks...


Next, it was ANOTHER trip to the potty. Must be the apple juice.

After a bath, Merrilee brushed her teeth and even let Mark blow dry her hair. Then she got dressed in a cute orchid outfit, before heading next door to Emma Sue's for the day.

Merrilee loves our neighbors -- especially Aunt Sharon and Miss Emma Sue, and the kids Emma and Timothy. She loves to play out in the yard, and she just loves being around people!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Merrliee is a loving, cute baby -- MOST of the time. But sometimes she needs a time out. Her time out spot is the steps. She knows she's done something wrong...


The only problem is while she's in time out she cracks us up. Her looks are something else. Mark, especially, has a hard time not breaking out into belly laughs. This is how time out usually ends...


On Saturday, Beth had some some medical appointments, and then went to an afternoon movie. Mark and Merrilee spent the afternoon going for walks, and playing in our next door neighbor's back yard. Emma Sue runs a day care center, and she has lots of toys in her yard, including a seesaw that is Merrilee's favorite...

video

The two of them spent some time sitting on the front porch looking at all the flowers. It won't be long now until all the flowers are gone for the season.
The visits to the potty still crack up up too.

It is so much fun having another Miller in the house!