I have very few pictures of all the fun things we did in June. I just haven't been good about taking the camera. But if you bear with me, you'll find some cute pictures at the end.
When May turned into June, James' Aunt Lizzie came for a visit. Grammy & Aunt Lizzie had planned a trip for the moms & cousins to a small amusement park about 2 hours from us. But the day dawned not just cloudy, but pouring-down-rainy. So they opted instead for the Aquarium. Fabulous idea.
As soon as we arrived, we went to the dolphin show. James was fascinated. Then we began to make our way through the exhibits. James loved it all. He's not as into fish and animals and bugs as his cousins, so it was good for their excitement about such things to rub off on him.
But it didn't seem to rub off too much. Aunt Lizzie treated each of the children to a gift from the gift shop (thank you, Liz!). James picked a helicopter. I tried to encourage him toward something more like the turtles, dolphins or other water creatures that his cousins had selected. But he was not to be deterred. The boy likes his machines!
Expecting that next summer might look quite different from this one due to having an infant, I created a Summer of Fun plan for James & me. I invited a group of moms and their children to join us on a different outing each week this summer. We have visited area playgrounds, a splash park (James hated it as much this time as he did last year!), and the park at the end of a large airport runway. We had two moms join us for our picnic at the airport... James talked about that trip for quite awhile. That day, he watched jetliners landing right over his head. He saw a freight train and subway trains on the bridge. Boats sped along the river, and a couple of helicopters flew by, too!
My mom came twice in June. One day she dropped Dad off at the airport for his trip out to the high school graduation of one of his grandsons. And the following week, she came before she picked Dad up. James was thrilled! And she stayed home with the napping boy while I had an OB appointment one week. (Thank you, Mom!)
In the middle of the month, I had the privilege of taking a meal to a friend with a 2 1/2 week old baby boy. My friend and I chatted in her kitchen while I put the food in her fridge. Then I went to find James, whom I expected to be playing with my friend's 21-month-old son. Ummm... well... James was more interested in the baby. I found him in the pack-n-play with his hand resting gently on the baby's belly. Gulping, I took him out and firmly instructed him that he may NOT climb into the pack-n-play. Then I went to tell my friend.
She was so gracious. She even offered to let James hold the baby. Delight! James held onto Stephen so carefully, and for longer than I would have expected. And later he asked to hold him again. Stephen was a sport and allowed James the joy a second time.
I felt such happiness at seeing our boy responding to a little one with such care and attention. I trust our baby will receive the same sweet love from his or her big brother.
Another darling moment came while I babysat James' good friend, Dorothy. At lunchtime, James had cleaned his plate, and of his own initiative he began to feed her. Such sweetness!
On Father's Day, we took our friend, John, and picnicked with Ben's family at an historic battleground. Ben and I have agreed not to do gifts on Mother's & Father's Days. But we do give each other cards. On the way home, we stopped at a local farm where Ben ordered homemade ice cream (and shared some with James). Other than the ice cream, though, James' highlight was playing with his cousins.
At the end of the month, we had the joy of staying with our friends, Sam & Ben, at their house, while their parents served at a meeting in England. James had so much fun! Shortly before we went for the week, James begged me to stop in on our way home one afternoon. That day, James received a wonderful gift. Sam had an old guitar with only two strings on it which James had picked up and started strumming. Sam's mom offered that James could have it. Really?!?
The next night, we took James and his guitar to the music store where it was outfitted with new strings. What fun! Our boy loves this instrument. We are so excited for the day when he can learn to play for real!
Sadly, I don't think I have any pictures of our time with Sam & Ben. We had a great time hanging out with them. James did so well eating, sleeping and playing that week. We did some fun stuff like visiting the Splash Playground (which Sam & Ben loved, but James not so much!). We hosted a surprise birthday party for our friend John (that will be a post all on its own). And James managed to fall and end up with five stitches the day before we left. What can I say? He's an active boy!
I'll post pictures of the stitches - and the details of the events - in my July post, since the actual injury occurred July 1st (thus placing the pictures in the July folder, and not accessible to me at the moment!)