Summer Babe

comments: 163

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It's in full swing now, this lovely summer. The weather has been glorious, the nights long. The sun shines and the breeze blows. The flowers bloom and fade, and the plums are already starting to fall. The baby is learning to chew, and every day brings new foods to try. My lady loves the water, and taking her to the pool (we went three times last week) is like a dream. She is mellow and trusting and fearless, though quiet at first; she presses herself deeper into my arms as we walk onto the deck, and sits heavily, with her cheek pressed to mine, as I hold her up to see: This is the pool. It's zero-depth, so it's like a beach — you can sit in only a few inches of water if you want. I rub water on her arm, trickle it down her belly. Rub, rub, trickle, trickle: You know this water. And yeah, she does; within minutes she's sitting on my submerged lap, and in a few minutes more she's waving her foot, splashing. Soon, it's all hers: Hands slapping, feet slapping. Her toy boat squirts, her whale-shaped cup drains. Shoulders, arms, belly, legs, back, hair, everything's wet now, and it's good. The sun is white bright and the water shines. Big kids splash and chase and scream with delight, erupting past us. Her face drips; she ducks her head and blinks the water away but then looks right back up, eyelashes dark and glistening. She doesn't cry. She says, "Da da da da da da da da DA." She presses her forehead to mine, still talking, holding her boat. It's the best day of my life. The fountains shoot long arcs of giant droplets or gurgle up small towers of white froth, but all are met with the same quiet observation, and then, eventually, the determined reaching-toward: Give me. Is there anything better than watching someone reach for a column of water with her dimpled baby hands for the first time? Clutch the bars of her crib and try to stand? Open her tiny mouth for even more ricotta cheese? Stretch to touch a bobbing allium blossom, just beyond her fingers? Keep reaching, my dearest darling dear sweet lovey lovey love. Reach, and reach, and reach. I will help you.

163 comments

You brighten my day!

Amy in Texas says: July 08, 2013 at 03:22 PM

What a glorious time in your life. Enjoy every minute!

Gorgeous words and emotions.

love how the cardi turned out! I'm loving seeing the summer over your end when it is so chilly here in Melbourne!

I can't even find the words to say how happy I am for you in your motherhood!

Those eyes, those chubby cheeks, that ginger hair! Pure adorableness. You must be over the moon. :)

....and I think that's the first crying babe we've seen, absolutely adorable!

What a fun summer memory. Swimming is always a big summer memory around here
It is only gonna get so much better that she loves the water. Have fun and stay cool.
Amy

Beautiful, Alicia. So happy for you.

I love how beautifully you capture these emotions... in words and in pictures.

What a nice post. You'll always remember Amelia's first summer and the way she took to the water. She's beautiful and has such an expressive face. She looks like a very fun little girl.

One of the best things about raising a child is experiencing the world all over again for the first time.

Water babies are so much fun! Love the photos as always. Foodie faces are adorable!!! And do I spy Vietnamese food with fish sauce? YUMMY!! Enjoy!!

isn't it wonderful to see the world through mimi's eyes? seeing the world at her level...no words. hard to believe...bastille day, she'll be nine months. as always, alicia, beautiful post. thank you.

So nice to see her") Love the bean pic:)

and her little I don't love this face..:) Bumbo..wine..climbimg hydrangeas..splish splash..
I spy a darling cake carrier..too..
Alicia..any idea when the new Xmas decos are coming?
Christmas in July kits maybe?

I think I have the same bike basket..

Reneelynn says: July 08, 2013 at 04:43 PM

So calming today. Just what I needed ;)

Robin Wrenn says: July 08, 2013 at 04:50 PM

OHMYGOSH was that an unhappy face photo? She's still so cute and the rainbow sweater is ADORABLE!! Love it. I wasn't crazy about it when I saw it before, but it is perfect with Amelia in it

Lovely pictures of your little sweetie! A gorgeous sweater!

It's great to see people who so obviously love being parents!

The rainbow jumper looks amazing on her....love it. Regards Kathy A, Brisbane, Australia

I want you to know what a gift it is to read your writing and to see your pictures--you are filling this little space with such love, and joy--and it fills all who read and are open. Think of all the love that is spreading...

Tears in my eye's reading that...really beautiful.

Thanks for sharing:) That is THE most Gorgeous baby Girl! :) I so look forward to your posts. They ooze love and deep appreciation... So cool:) xo

I'm teared up, the best indeed! Happy Summer!

Carrie Lynn says: July 08, 2013 at 05:41 PM

From one mama to another, this touched my heart so deeply. Thank you for giving me this realization that Yes -it's all about them reaching for more and more, then helping them explore what they are reaching for! I never want my babies to stop reaching!

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About

My name is Alicia Paulson
and I love to make things. I live with my husband and daughter in Portland, Oregon, and design sewing, embroidery, knitting, and crochet patterns. See more about me at aliciapaulson.com

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Photography

Since August of 2011 I've been using a Canon EOS 60D with an EF 18-200mm kit lens and an EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro lens.