We are home again, from our last vacation for a long, long while (this pleases Harper in particular). We headed out to San Diego and had a busy but lovely vacation there for five days. It's nice to be home and rest my swollen ankles, but I certainly miss the views and the excitement. More pictures to follow.
If we thought Orelia couldn't love the beach any more, we underestimated the fun she would have with her four older cousins.
She felt a special connection to the eldest, and I couldn't figure out if Orelia thought of her more as a friend or a mom-friend (she loves her mom friends dearly).
Whenever she was around, Orelia wanted to be with her.
Orelia chanted her name constantly, and we could always get Orelia dressed and ready for the beach with a promise her special cousin would be there.
Daddy even got a break from being designated pool playmate when Orelia found someone even sillier to tickle her toes and give her "high ten."
Uncle Bobby proved an ideal playmate for the kids.
Especially because he was willing to do some heavy lifting and he could take a joke.
John was occasionally still needed for pool time if Orelia needed to "swim" away from chasing cousins.
Only the funniest ones, of course.
Almost every day a new hole was dug at the beach to bury as many cousins as would fit. As the shortest, Orelia would be in up to her belly, but somehow she could always find a way out.
One of Orelia's favorite beach activities with her cousins was asking them to walk with her to the trash can with someone's empty coke cans or water bottles. I can't count the number of times she managed to rope one of them into making the trek with her. I think they all enjoyed the attention, actually.
Orelia's been talking about the vacation ever since we got home and has loved looking back at all of the photos. She's so lucky to have such sweet cousins willing to let a toddler tag along. Nothing beats cousin time.
We are about a month away from Orelia's second birthday and officially referring to her as "almost two" (and sometimes even "two" - eek!) to anyone who asks.
What is she like at "almost two?" Very energetic. She runs literally everywhere, unless she has requested to hold your hand. (Even then, she may say "running" and get you to run alongside her.)
She's gotten to be about 80% on the colors she knows well, but doesn't really know the colors black and pink (usually considered brown and purple, respectively). She loves to talk about colors.
She is always eager to point out if there is "one" or "two" of something, and occasionally can accurately state whether there are "three." I think she learned how to count to two from her obsession with buses - she just naturally picked up when I said "oh there are two buses" and started applying it to other things (namely, hang gliders).
Parks are more fun than ever these days. She loves to sprint from place to place and go down slides on her belly.
She is still an extremely affectionate child with those she loves (kids her age, older children, and adults). So long as you are interested in hugs, uppies, and hand-holding, she will be ecstatic.
On the 4th of July she made friends with an older girl and demanded they go up and down the stairs together. On a lucky day at the park an older child (let's be honest, an older girl) will take an interest in her, and it's wonderful.
She loves babies too and has been lucky enough to get to shower her friend's new baby brother with some attention recently. She brings up this baby a lot and is now convinced I have an identical baby in my tummy. It's not too far off from the truth so we go with it.
She cracks us and herself up all the time.
Laughing with her is one of my greatest joys.
I'm so lucky to spend my time with this goofy almost two year-old.
Almost every day in Rehoboth we visited the boardwalk to get our fill of fattening treats and fun. It was amazing.
One of Orelia's favorite parts of the boardwalk experience was riding the Jolly Trolly. I wish I had taken a picture of the outside of this trolly. It was actually just a weird trolly carriage pulled by a van around downtown. It was enough like a bus to delight Orelia, however, and we rid it roundtrip three times in two weeks.
The boardwalk has actual rides too, much more exciting than a trolly pulled by a van.
Funland was a huge hit from our first visit!
What could be better for a toddler than riding around in a boat or a firetruck?
She would literally ride toddler rides until we dragged her away. Luckily for her, there were at least half a dozen rides for her to choose from to fill her afternoons.
When Funland was closed, there was always 50 cents for a "train" ride outside the arcades. This girl really got a lot of excitement in.
After all the thrills, one needs to relax with a gigantic bucket of Thrasher's fries. Or a Kohr Bros. cone. Or a crepe. Or a funnel cake. Really, the possibilities are endless.
When she was really lucky, Uncle Bobby was around to indulge her with a walk on the beach. The boardwalk was a great place to spend many afternoons watching our girl enjoy her vacation to the fullest.