Lately my little one has been astonishing me with things that she says and does that are indications that she's definitely leaving the "baby stage" behind. She can count objects (up to three) and can "babble" count up to about 15. Then she'll sing her ABC's (although we're working on pronounciation) and she's saying more and more words (i.e. "bye bye wawa" to the water down the tub drain).
This weekend my Grandpa Frank came to visit from Pittsburgh, PA and brought with him a handmade gift for Natalie that cements her transition into the toddler years: a car! It didn't take her long to figure it out and she had a good time steering it all around our kitchen and back patio. I'm envisoning her running over her brother with it in a few months when she decides she's sick of sharing Mom and Dad's attention.
While my grandpa was in town we went up to Havre de Grace (a water-oriented burg not too far from here that was a leading contender for the nation's capitol at one point). If you move to this area, you'll quickly learn that the correct pronounciation of this little town is "HAVE A DE GRACE" (no French accent please). The people here looked at me like I had two heads when I tried to pronounce it the French way back in 2001.
We had dinner at an Italian restaurant where we got to witness an honest-to-goodness brawl between the owner and an apparent rival (now you know these are REAL Italians). There was a scuffle, a tackle and a lot of cursing and Kevin hopped right up to help steer the commotion outside and hold off one of the guys from beating the other into a bloody pulp. Go hon! Quite the excitement for the night!
Then we went to the park and Natalie did the swing (weee as she calls it) and attemped to slide down wet slides (it had just rained). Finally we strolled along the promenade (a non-commercial boardwalk of sorts) looking out over the bay. It was a beautiful night.
All in all it was a great visit. Thanks, Grandpa Frank, for making the trip and for thinking of Natalie!