I've been spoiled a bit lately.
It started on Wednesday when my staff surprised me with a "book shower". I know that we had a "fun lunch" with ice cream and trivia planned since we're finally at that slow time of the summer, but I didn't know that my amazing colleague who I admire and adore had suggested that everyone help us celebrate the upcoming arrival of our second baby with new books for both Ella and the baby. Let's just say that we were so spoiled with new toddler and baby books that we had to move a giant stack of board books from our main bookshelf in our living room to the nursery.
On the 4th of July, we were spoiled with front-row seats to the best fireworks show in town when we were invited to celebrate at our friends' home, which is right at the bottom of "A Mountain", from where they are let off. This was the first time that Ella was up late enough for fireworks, and she loved them (and repeatedly told us that the gold was her favorite color to see).
On Friday, my husband stayed home and got our carpets cleaned. We think (and hope and pray!) that Ella is done with potty training accidents, and we wanted them to be nice and clean for the new baby (not that she'll be crawling anytime soon, but it's still nice to have them done). My dad then came back into town after his Grand Canyon adventure, and watched Ella that evening while my husband and I stayed at one of the local resorts in town. We had an amazing dinner with grown-up conversation, and breakfast-in-bed room service the next morning. I then indulged in my first pregnancy massage, and left feeling more relaxed than I have in a very, very long time.
We spent just the one night away, but were spoiled by my dad entertaining Ella (and I'm sure that she entertained him as well). I think that we usually do a pretty good job of keeping Ella engaged around the house on a regular basis, even when we have chores and projects to do, but she sure loved all the undivided attention from her Boppy. He also brought down two giant bags of baby clothes from my sister-in-law. Most of the clothes were items that Ella had worn and outgrown, and we had sent on to my niece (who is four months younger than Ella). But she also threw in a lot of my niece's old clothes as well, so we are fully stocked for the next year! Yes, they are mostly previously-worn hand-me-downs, but they grow so quickly at this stage that they don't really have time to "wear out" anything, and most items still look brand new!
Now I'm back at work, and I guess I'm still a little bit spoiled to have this slow part of the summer coincide with the end of my pregnancy when I'm trying to get everything ready for my maternity leave. I still feel a little bit bad that I'll be out during our peak time of the year, but I'm hoping to do the bulk of the prep-work before I leave. My plan is to work all the way up until the baby comes (my office is just down the street from the University hospital, where the baby will be born, so I joke that I'll just waddle my way over there once labor starts).
Today's blessing was Ella's sensitivity and compassion after we said "goodbye" to my dad. We stopped by to get donuts on our way to daycare and his way out of town, and then went our separate ways. After hugging him and saying "goodbye", Ella and I hit the road and talked about how we were going to miss him. I started tearing up a bit, just thinking about how much I appreciate and love him, and Ella--from her carseat--suggested that I squeeze myself real tight to make me feel better, and demonstrated for me. And she was right. I'm so blessed to not only have my dad, but to also have my sweet girl.