Seven months old!

Lila, this was such a big month for you! You took your first plane flight to California (which is why this photo is not in your usual chair). You did OKAY on the plane. After fussing for two hours, you did finally fall asleep for four hours, which gave mama and daddy a nice break! You are currently in California, visiting all of mama’s family. You’ve met so many people, including your cousin Lucy, who you think is SO funny! You are doing really well sleeping in a new room and a new bed, and adjusting to the time change. You even caught your first cold, poor thing, but you are in pretty good spirits nonetheless.

This month you also started eating all sorts of fruits and vegetables. So far you have had: pears, apples, bananas, mango, peaches, avocado, peas, carrots, sweet potatoes, zucchini, and prunes. You also have had Jamba Juice smoothies twice, and loved them!

You are sitting unaided now, and want to crawl so badly! Sleep has been interesting since you insist on rolling over and over and over.

You also got your first two teeth this month! You were a bit fussy for a few days, but not too bad! You also started saying “Dada” this month. You say it over and over again. We love your little voice!

Happy 7 months baby girl!

 

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The last few days in California

Father’s Day was the day after Lucy’s birthday party. Our family and Dave’s dad and brother met up at the Duke of Edinbugh (my favorite pub) for lunch. Oh yeah, Father’s day was also my birthday πŸ™‚

Lucy at the Duke

Everyone at Father’s Day lunch at the Duke

Father’s Day lunch at the Duke

Eric and Lila at the Duke

On Monday we all went to Roaring Camp and went on a train ride through the redwoods. We used to go there a lot as kids – it was fun being back there all these years later with our own kids!

Becky and Lucy waiting for the train

Lucy, Dave and Simon being dorks

Lila on the train

The entrance to Roaring Camp

My friends had one more BBQ before we left town – this one was at Erika’s house. It was so great seeing a bunch of our guy friends and having the opportunity to catch up with them. I hate not seeing everyone all the time! Lila was the only kid there for a long time (until Steve showed up with his kids) and she did so well!

Old friends are the best friends: Erica, Steve, Bryan, me and Lila,David, Erika, Mary.

Lila and Mary

Before we left we shipped a lot of hand-me-downs home for Lila – books, clothes and DOLLS! Mostly MY dolls! Before we packed them up, we sat Lila on the couch with all of them.

It was really sad to say goodbye. I hate that California and New York are not right next to each other. Oh well. Until next year!

A few random cute photos leftover from the trip:

Lucy’s birthday party!

While we were in California, Lucy turned TWO! I’m so happy we were able to be there for her birthday party. My brother Nick flew up for the weekend, too. It was so nice having everyone all together! It was SO hot the day of the party. Becky had lots of drinks on hand and a kiddie pool set up for the little ones. Lila put her feet in the pool, but wasn’t a big fan of being splashed by the bigger kids, so she didn’t stay in for long. After a few hours we went back to my parents’ house and went in their pool. It was Lila’s first time in a swimming pool and she did great! We had bought a baby float, and she loved floating around. She even kicked her legs instinctively!

Lila, dressed for the party.

Lila, with Nick, at Lucy’s party.

Lucy playing with bubbles at her party

Costume change after going in the kiddie pool

Lila’s first time in the pool!

 

California trip, continued.

We spent much of the week hanging out with family. One day we went to Hakone Gardens, a Japanese garden in Saratoga (where my sister got married) to walk around the gardens and feed the fish. Then we went out for Mexican food in Los Altos.

Lucy and my parents

Lila at lunch

Lila had lots of fun hanging out with Uncle Simon (the baby whisperer) during the week, and playing with Jack, my parents’ dog.

Lucy was at my parents’ house almost every day, so she and Lila had lots of time to hang out.

While we were in California, Lila went on a swing for the first time – she loved it!

Later in the week we went to Happy Hollow (a children’s zoo) with my parents, my sister Becky, her husband Dave, Lucy and Simon.

Lucy and Simon at Happy Hollow

Lucy trying to brush one of the goats

One afternoon, Eric, Lila and I went for a hike. Eric wore Lila in the babycarrier on his back, and she fell asleep for most of it.

Toward the end of the week, Eric went over to Becky and Dave’s to help Dave with some landscaping in the backyard in preparation for Lucy’s birthday party that weekend. I was able to meet up with my old friends, Gina and Dawn, and meet Dawn’s new baby, Holly. Holly was so wee! I can’t believe Lila was ever that small!

Holly

Lila, dressed to go out for lunch.

Even more photos of our trip in the next post!

Visiting California!

In June, Lila took her first airplane flight to California (with Eric and I) to visit our family out there. We had such a great time staying with my parents and spending lots of time with my siblings. Lila loved everybody, and especially her cousin, Lucy. They were so sweet together!

Lila and Lucy with Uncle Simon

Lila and Lucy with Uncle Simon

We arrived late on a Friday night, so our first real day in town was a Saturday. Of course the first thing on the agenda was a trip to our favorite pizza place, Cicero’s! (Lila is wearing a Cicero’s onesie in the above photos). On Sunday, my friend Fin and her husband, Mike, hosted a BBQ at their new house. It was so nice to see some of my oldest friends, and it was great to see our kids together!

Erika and Lila

Tristin’s daughter, Riley

Fin’s son, Evan

Eating mum mums at Fin’s

My oldest friends: Kathy, Fin, Tristin, Mary, Erika and me

Lila was not a fan of the kiddie pool πŸ™‚

In the sunshine at Fin’s

On Monday, Eric, Lila and I drove over to Santa Cruz. I wanted to show them my favorite town! We went downtown and walked around, drove around the campus at UC Santa Cruz so Eric could see where I worked at Shakespeare Santa Cruz, had burgers at a new burger place, drove by the lighthouse, and went to Natural Bridges Beach. Lila saw the Pacific Ocean for the first time!

Lila at lunch in Santa Cruz

At the beach

Eric and Lila at Natural Bridges

With Lila at the beach

Lila loves the beach!

More of our trip photos to be continued next post!

Finishing the Tour

Its been a whirlwind few weeks and I am so behind on posting here, so this is likely to be a long entry. I am home in New York now, finally getting settled after closing “Rock of Ages” a week ago.

After the last lay-off, we played one week in Atlanta at the Fox Theater. It was really hot and humid in Atlanta, so there wasn’t a whole lot of venturing outside. Eric and I mostly stayed put in our hotel. We did go out one day, though, to the aquarium. Atlanta has a great aquarium, and Eric had never been – so we braved the heat and spent an afternoon there.

At the Georgia Aquarium

On Friday of that week, I was completely surprised and blown away by a baby shower thrown for us at a bar across the street from the hotel. Eric was in on the whole thing, so he lured me over there, telling me we were having lunch with a friend of his from college. Even when the bartender totally blew the cover by asking us if we were there for the baby shower, I still didn’t catch on. It was such a nice afternoon and I am so grateful to all my coworkers for celebrating with us and being so generous with presents – my gosh! A number of the big items on our baby registry were purchased for us – the carseat, stroller, high chair. I couldn’t believe it! We also got some very cute clothes – our little rocker baby is going to be decked out in style!

Me and Eric at our baby shower

Putting on my "new mom" tiara

Rockin' baby duds

New mom tiara

On Saturday morning before the matinee, I met up with Carrie, one of my crafty friends who I “met” online through Flickr and Ravelry a couple of years ago. When I came to Atlanta with “Spamalot” in 2009, I met up with Carrie and her twin sister Cathy in person for the first time – they came to the show and we went out to lunch. In the past two years a lot has happened – Carrie and Cathy have both had babies, and now I am expecting my own!Β  I was so excited to meet Carrie’s little boy, Charlie, when we met for breakfast at The Flying Biscuit. It was so nice spending time with them both and getting to bend Carrie’s ear about babies and being a mom. Charlie is such a cutie, and he was enamored of all the neighborhood dogs walking by the restaurant πŸ™‚

Carrie and Charlie

I finished the weekend off in Atlanta taking some photos of our two gorgeous Sherrie understudies, Holly and Angela. Elicia, who normally plays Sherrie, was out sick with strep throat, so I took the opportunity to take some photos of the girls getting ready for their respective shows, as it would likely be their last time going on in that role.

Holly getting ready to go on as "Sherrie"

Angela getting ready to go on as "Sherrie"

For being such a huge house (it seats almost 5000), we actually had a great week at the Fox…but it was time to move on to our final stop of the tour – Washington, DC!

I had hoped for some respite from the heat in DC, but no such luck. I think it was actually even hotter and more humid there, than in Atlanta, if you can believe it. The crew came back from load-in at the National on Monday night with horror stories of the air conditioning being out all day. We came in on Tuesday morning to a terribly hot theater. It turns out that the a/c hadn’t yet been set to “summer mode”. It took all day for the building to cool down – in the meantime, our props department thankfully went out and bought fans for all the rooms, including our office. Being hot and pregnant is no fun.

The weather stayed hot the whole two weeks we were in town. It was very hard to be outside. Luckily DC has a lot of indoor things to do, with all their amazing museums. Eric and I went to the Air and Space Museum one day, and another day we went to the Newseum, which I loved. The Newseum is dedicated to the history of the press in this country, and there were so many amazing exhibits, from Photo of the Year, to the Pulitzer Prize Photography Gallery, to exhibits about Katrina and 9-11. It actually took Eric and I two days to get through the whole museum (luckily tickets are good for two consecutive days). I definitely recommend going if you are ever in DC.

We picked the mildest day we could to walk around the National Mall and take photos of all the monuments (and by mild, it was maybe 92 instead of 102 degrees!).

At the Vietnam Memorial

The National Mall (with under construction reflecting pool)

At the base of the Washington monument

Our last week in DC was all about gearing up for “the end”. I spent hours working on a slideshow for everyone of all the photos I have taken over this past year on the road. I set it to music, and then Eric helped me convert it to DVD format, and then we spent a few days making copies for everyone in the company as a goodbye present.

Judi, our company manager, asked me to take photos of everyone in the company “waving goodbye”. She got prints made of all of them and then pinned them all to the callboard midway through our last week. It was nice seeing everyone’s faces up there, and a little sad, too. Eric also worked on a project for Judi – he made a collage of photos of everyone in the cast, which she had printed and framed for each of us.

The Rock of Ages crew, taken the last week of the tour

On the Thursday night before closing, we had our closing party. It was a fun night of drinks and italian food, and we put my slideshow on the flat screen over the bar. Some of our crazy “Rock of Ages” fans were there, too. We couldn’t finish out the run without Goldi-roxx, our crazy blonde-wig, hot-pants wearing fan, who came to almost every performance in San Francisco, Denver, and now DC.

Joey and Holly at the closing party

Keith and Patrick at the closing party

Jamie and Amy at the closing party

Goldi-roxx and Patrick at the closing party

The closing night performance was pretty awesome. We had small houses the last two weeks in DC, so to have the final night filled with screaming fans was great. There were a few minor shenanigans onstage, but mostly everyone behaved and just really enjoyed the last show. The whole cast and crew came out onstage at the end – it was a lovely ending to the run. After the show we all congregated at a bar near our hotel in Georgetown for one last round (or rounds) of drinks before saying goodbye and heading our separate ways.

It has definitely been a challenging ten months with this show – there were lots of ups and also lots of downs. But for the most part, the people that I traveled with, were a fun-loving, generous, hilarious, awesome bunch, and I will miss them.

Some pics from closing night:

Joey, Lauralyn, Holly and Patrick at "places"

Rashad blowing me a kiss

Jon and Erika hugging at "places"

Getting ready to melt some faces for the last time

Watching the show from backstage

The end of Act One

Constantine taking in the roar of the audience (this was a standing ovation DURING Act 1)

Curtain Call

Teresa and Chris during the curtain call

 

Constantine thanking the fans at the end of the show

Skibic rocking out

So now I am back in New York and starting to try and get things ready for the baby. We are still in a bit of a holding pattern when it comes to moving, but at least we can start buying things and making things now πŸ™‚ I have a couple of knitting projects underway and am planning a quilt, and Eric is designing a dresser that he is going to build for the nursery. Slowly but surely, we are getting it together.

It’s hard to believe only a week has passed since closing the show. Its been such a busy week of unpacking and checking things off the “to do” list. I even went and worked two shows at “Rock of Ages” Broadway, where I’m going to be subbing for a little bit (until I am too large to fit backstage!).

My parents and brother come tomorrow for a five-day visit, then next week Eric and I are going to his family’s house upstate for a few days. The week after that I am at “Rock of Ages” Broadway for a week covering someone’s vacation. The time is going to speed by until the baby’s born, I just know it.

I leave you with a few baby-related photos.

Baby's first sweater - knit by me

Cradle made by Eric's dad

Crib used by Eric as a baby, now to be used for our baby!

Me, at 23 weeks pregnant, getting ready for the closing party.

Denver

My dear friend Tanya met me in Houston on Saturday the 11th and we took off for Denver the next day. It’s a long ride to Denver from Houston – something like 20-22 hours, so I was happy to have Tanya with me. We also hadn’t seen each other in about a year and a half – funnily enough the last time we were together was also in Houston, and we were both staying at the same Hyatt as this time (when I stopped to see her on my road trip after “Spamalot” – she was in Houston with “Mary Poppins”). So we had plenty to catch up on, making a long car ride kind of perfect.

We stopped for the first night in Amarillo, TX. and had our very own Tony Awards party at a La Quinta motel complete with takeout from Denny’s. We are classy ladies πŸ™‚ The next day we hit the road early only to run into a giant forest fire on the border of New Mexico and Colorado – and the freeway we needed to get on was closed. I was really happy Tanya was with me because I probably would have had a melt-down if I had been alone when I realized we had to do a 135 mile detour to get around the fire! It added a couple of hours onto the trip, but we did manage to get to Denver safely around dinner-time. We made dinner with Eric at the Residence Inn and I tried (but failed) to stay awake with him until he had to go to work at 2:30am (for a 3am load-in – oy!).

Fire on the border of New Mexico and Colorado

Load-in was kind of a tedious one, unfortunately. Because of the long distance between Houston and Denver, the crew worked from 3am (when the trucks arrived) straight through to the show on Tuesday night. All hopes of getting an afternoon nap in were dashed when a big support piece on the set broke while being unloaded from the truck. It had to be mended, which delayed the set going in, which therefore delayed everything else. It took right up until the dinner break to get everything in and ready for the show. My friend Tiffany, who is an old friend from college, stopped by the theater in the afternoon with her kids Ava and Seamus, so I took a little break and showed them around. It was fun seeing Ava get so excited about being in the theater – Tiffany is convinced she is going to be an actress.

The next day was our regular “day after load-in day of rest”, but on Thursday I got up and went and had the most awesome prenatal massage from Regina at Harmony’s Family. I highly recommend her if you are looking for a good place for prenatal massage in Denver. My back is all jacked up from having those two herniated discs last year, and Regina also told me that my hips are exceptionally tight – probably from all the driving I do – which is not helping my lower back issues. She did such an amazing job loosening me up! I’m searching and searching for a place like Harmony’s Family in NYC – not only do they offer specifically prenatal massage, but also acupuncture for pregnant women (which I was told could help with my blood pressure), doula services and childbirth classes. Anybody know of a place like this in NYC? I haven’t had any luck with googling. There just aren’t enough hippies in NYC for cool businesses like this. I realized that when I first moved there and went in search of a spa like the ones I used to go to in Santa Cruz, that are new agey, hippie places with hot tubs and are all about relaxation. In NYC the spas are all about beauty treatments and are way more clinical than new agey. And I have yet to find a spa in NYC where you canΒ  get a private hot tub in addition to your other treatments. Anyway! I really do want to find somewhere at home where I can continue with the prenatal massage and also try out acupuncture (specifically for mamas) – so if anyone has any recommendations, please message me!

After my massage I went and had lunch with Tiffany, Ava and Seamus at their house. They had gotten a little birthday cake for me. It was fun hanging out for the afternoon in their yard. Both of the kids have gotten so big since the last time I saw them!

Birthday cake from Ava and Seamus

Ava

 

Seamus

Friday was my birthday and I really wanted to do something outdoors. The weather was a bit sketchy, but Eric, Travis and I decided to brave it and head up to Red Rocks for a hike. The clouds cleared up after we got there and it ended up being beautiful. We ran into some other co-workers up there, but mostly had a really nice, quiet afternoon. We even ran into a group of very tame deer who let us get really close to take their pictures!

Red Rocks

Eric taking photos

Eric on the trail

Three bucks!

A doe

 

Hiking on the trail

Travis on the trail

Friends from work, stopped for lunch

After getting back from Red Rocks, we got cleaned up and Eric took me out for a birthday dinner at Tamayo, a Mexican/South American restaurant near the theater. It was delicious!

It was the normal four-show weekend, and then Monday was rainy and gloomy. We had been thinking about taking the train up to Pike’s Peak, but I read online that pregnant women should really avoid going above 12,000 feet. I was going to call my doctor and ask about it (Eric said the doctors probably think I’m crazy since I am always calling with some random question like “can I climb a mountain today?” – ha ha) but since the weather ended up being crappy we decided to scrap the idea. Good thing, too – we had some friends from work who went up there and they said it was 17 degrees, snowing and zero visibility at the top. Seeing as I sent my winter coat home already, that wouldn’t have been too fun. We stayed in Denver instead. I went to the mall and bought some maternity jeans – my regular pants have finally stopped fitting! Then Eric and I went to REI to look around (didn’t buy anything though). Eric then went to the butcher with our friend Brad and they bought some giant steaks. We ended up grilling out at the hotel that night which was fun and super yummy.

The next day was gorgeous, so Eric and I got up early and headed down to Colorado Springs to Garden of the Gods. The last time I was there it was overcast, so it was nice to see it in a different light. We took a bunch of photos of all the rock formations and drove around the whole park a number of times. Afterwards we had lunch in cute Manitou Springs before heading back to Denver for the show that night.

Garden of the Gods

Garden of the Gods

Pike's Peak in the distance

On Thursday I met up with Janann and April, two friends from ACT days, for lunch at a great vegetarian restaurant called Watercourse. It was so awesome to see them both. Two really great girls. I wish I were able to see them more often then every couple of years!

Now we are headed into the weekend and I am trying to wrap my head around packing. We have a lay-off week next week, so Eric and I are spending three days driving my car back to New York. We are trying to load it up with as much stuff as possible to take home now. Trying to really lighten the load and get by with the bare minimum for our last three weeks on tour. I’ll be flying to the last two stops – Atlanta and Washington DC, so I have to make sure my suitcases are both underweight. I’ve filled my footlocker (which travels on the truck) with cat supplies that previously lived in the car. I can’t believe we are almost done with this tour! In some ways it seems like it has flown by, and in other ways it seems like it has gone on forever.

I have two doctors appointments next week – one is another ultrasound, so hopefully we can confirm the sex of the baby. Things are still going great – I think I have felt the baby move a couple of times now, but still not regularly. My blood pressure, according to my monitor anyway, seems to be normal. I had an anxiety dream the other night that I went into labor and we still had not bought one single thing for the baby. I think I am really anxious about getting home and starting to get things ready! I have bought exactly two onesies, but that’s it! We are getting a registry organized on Amazon, though, so I am at least “window shopping”. Excited to actually start getting some baby stuff into the apartment , though!

That’s all for now – will keep you posted with news from New York next week!

Houston and a trip to New York

I have very few photos to share of Houston – in fact I think I took two the whole week I was there. I just haven’t been feeling it with the photography lately, which is very weird for me. Maybe its the heat, maybe its because the walk to the theater from our hotels in the past two cities has been substantial (so I haven’t been wanting to carry extra things with me, like a camera), maybe I’m just uninspired by Texas, who knows. What I do know is that I hope I get my photo mojo back soon. I think having the pressure of photo projects (year in pictures and the archive project) isn’t really helping either. I’d rather just take photos when I feel inspired – so I may abandon those projects, or at least take a break. We’ll see.

Anyway, I was in Houston for a week with “Rock of Ages”, and I have nothing much to report about Houston. It is as bland as I remember it. Eric and I mainly used our free afternoons to run errands, like checking out strollers at Babies R Us. I’m kind of obsessed with strollers right now πŸ™‚ We also made a couple of trips to this awesome seafood joint, Goode Company Seafood,Β  that I was introduced to by Keith Reese when I was here with “Spamalot”. In fact, one of the two photos I took this week was at Goode Company:

Its in an old train car, and the food is REAL good. Check it out if you are ever in Houston.

Other than that, I pretty much spent the week getting ready to head back to New York. Leanne, the girlfriend of our head electrician Petey, came in to train to be my cover for my week off. One of the highlights of the work week was the premiere of “Waiting for Shankman” – an original song and music video written and directed by three of our swings as a plea to Adam Shankman, the director of the movie of “Rock of Ages” (and a judge on “So You Think You Can Dance”) to put our cast in the movie. 24 hours after this video was posted on YouTube, Adam Shankman had already seen it and written about it on Twitter. We’ll see if our cast actually ends up in the movie πŸ™‚

On Monday I took off on an early flight to New York. Originally I planned to take off a whole week because I thought I would be getting an amniocentesis and would need the time to recoup before flying back to Houston. In the end I decided against doing the amnio, but took the whole week off work anyway to get some rest and chill out at my apartment in New York.

The week has been great. Lots of rest, a couple of doctors appointments, and a trip to Buy Buy Baby to look at more strollers πŸ™‚ I’ve also started really paying attention to what strollers people are using in Manhattan. I definitely want to pick a city-friendly model.

The highlight of the week was getting my 16 week anatomy ultrasound on Tuesday. Our little baby was all curled up, so the tech had a little trouble making out the gender but she is pretty sure it is a girl! I am going to try and restrain myself from buying anything pink until our follow-up ultrasound on July 1st when they will confirm the sex. The baby’s measurements all look great and the heartbeat is strong and fast. My blood pressure was high, unfortunately, at my appointment today, so I may have to go back on blood pressure meds. Stupid blood pressure. At least the baby is doing great πŸ™‚

One more day in the city tomorrow and then back to Houston on Saturday. I am hanging out with my good friend Lyn tomorrow, which I am super psyched about and then Tanya meets me in Houston on Saturday to help me drive to Denver. Nothing better than good friends! Denver will be a blast, too. Two weeks there and lots of old friends to catch up with. The last week of June, we have another layoff from the show, so Eric and I are driving my car back to New York and spending a few more days here. We have the follow-up ultrasound, where they will be doing 3-D pictures, so we will be able to see our baby’s face! How cool is that?

In the meantime I am trying to stay cool. Today in NYC it was hotter than in Houston – crazy!

 

Dallas

At the Dallas Farmer's Market

At the Dallas Farmer's Market

With Suzanne at the Good Cafe

One of Suzanne's horses

Another of Suzanne's horses

Down the road from Suzanne's

Winsboro, TX.

Suzanne's ranch

The horses

Winsboro, TX.

Winsboro, TX.

A neighboring house

Walking around Winsboro

Morning on Suzanne's porch

Church in downtown Dallas

Most Handsome Men gig

Most Handsome Men gig at Club Dada

Most Handsome Men gig at Club Dada

Maddox, one of our guitar players

Winspear Opera House

Winspear Opera House