Thursday, March 31, 2011


Last night I left my sleeping big kids and my awake baby with a friend while I went to a baby shower. I assured my friend that Sammy would be a delight for about 45 minutes and then he would fall asleep. Apparently I was very wrong. Apparently he screamed pretty much the entire time I was gone. I felt just awful for my friend. Apparently Samuel has entered the "Stranger Awareness" phase of his babyhood.

This phase is a hard one. It makes leaving him with friends, or even Grandma, difficult. It makes going to the gym more like a timed sprint then a relaxing exercise session (how much cardio can I get in before the child care people page me over the intercom system?). But this phase also has it's up side.

Samuel looks at me like I am the source of all joy. And, most of the time, for him, I am! His sweet little eyes lock onto me like ... something locked - with a really big lock. His adorable smile reels me in like I'm a fish on a hook. Sometimes the whole world stops and it's just him in my arms with the camera doing a little circle around us in slow motion. Sometimes he looks at me and he has so much joy that all his appendages start moving simultaneously. Sometimes I look at him and I have so much joy that I cannot not stop and kiss him.

Sometimes even the phases that are difficult, are wonderful.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Some Days

You know how in life there are times when you can remember every day? Sometimes even every moment of every day? Pivotal times in your life or super fun times or super bad times even. I can remember several specific days of my mission. Certain moments of my wedding day are that way. And certain moments of my children's birth. The first moments that I saw each of my children. I can practically still feel the emotions of one very, very painful doctors visit and crying as I drove home. Some times are just like that.

My life lately is the exact opposite of those moments.

Time is just passing. Nothing is memorable. Nothing is special. So there's not really much to say about time as it just passes. My own voice is turning into the adults on Peanuts. "Wah wah wah wah wah wah."

*Ammended Later In The Day To Add:
Upon receipt of the first two responses to this blog post, it has occurred to me that this came off a little too "woe is me". I just really meant that nothing is going on. And, as I said two blog posts ago, that's OK. I admit, I am feeling a little melancholy today since I'm not really feeling well and Richard is out of town. I responded to this melancholy as I often do - by doing some service. It perked up my morning. But now I'm here in the afternoon with a crying baby, impatient kids, no plans for dinner, and a stuffy head, so the melancholy is back. I'll respond to this afternoon melancholy as I often do - with chocolate chip cookies after the kids go to bed.
I'm OK folks. Just living life.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

What A Crock

I finally broke down and got a crock pot. I am not a big fan of foods that are all mixed up together like in casseroles and stews, so I've never seen much of a reason to have a crock pot before. But Richard wanted to do some special recipe in one so I "let" him buy one.

So now, hit me with your favorite crock pot recipe. What ya got? Maybe I'll be glad I bought this huge (storage problem) thing.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Mundane Greatness

I don't feel like I've had much to say these days. And I feel like that's a good thing. We're just living life. Enjoying the backyard if we can, planning for a backyard update (the astro-turf plan has been canceled due to it costing in the neighborhood of $6000!!!!), cleaning house, teaching table manners, fitting in dentist appointments for my broken tooth, gearing up for Richard to be gone for another week, reading The Forgotten Garden (which I highly recommend), watching Sammy roll and roll, helping Isaiah learn to say "snack", teaching Asher to write his name, reading Little House on the Prairie with Naomi, watching the daffodils bloom in the yard, hoping my little lilac bush will show signs of having made it through the winter. A million great little mundane things.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Learning Portuguese

Richard gets to go to Brazil next month. For work -so it's all paid for. Maybe for like 3 weeks. And he keeps trying to convince me to go too. And I do want to go. But I want to go when I can stay and enjoy it for a while and not stress about money as much as I would if I went next month. So, I'm not going. This time. But I figured it was time to kick things up a notch as far as learning Portuguese. Because I at least have to know how to ask where the bathroom is, right?

So Richard made up these index cards that we have now stuck up all around the house. First there's the English word, then the Portuguese word, then a semi-phonetic garble of letters to help me remember how to pronounce it.

And Naomi drew this lovely picture to help us learn the family words.
Ya gotta start somewhere, right?

Tchau! (Or, for you non-Portuguese speakers, thats chow - or goodbye)

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Don't Blink

Because you might miss Sammy growing up too quickly. Today I put away a few baby things and thought, "How can I put away these baby things? He's still a baby!"
But now he's a baby who rolls around on the floor. When I pick him up, he's not in the same place as he was when I lay him down. Yesterday I saw him get up onto his hands a knees for a second! We've officially reached the phase where no small thing can be left on the floor or he'll eat it. (Also known as the vacuum-every-day phase) He won't sleep in the portacrib downstairs anymore - he's aware of us and wants to be up with us if he can hear us. When he sits on my lap while I eat dinner, he tries to grab my food - that means he's ready to eat real food. But I don't think that I'm ready for that! (Not to mention that I gave away my high chair and can't seem to find the small one that I want.)
Why are they so small for so short a time? I know not everybody does, but I love the little-bitty-baby phases. I want more of it!
(But don't worry, I don't want it bad enough to have another baby yet.)

Friday, March 11, 2011

Meet Eleanor

Eleanor Roosevelt that is. Naomi had to dress up as Mrs. Roosevelt as part of her first book report.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Playdate With Sammy

Come play with Sammy! He loves to lay on his tummy and look at you. He'll make faces and blow bubbles. His favorite toy is the yellow disk you see in these pictures. On the other side of the disk is a giraffe head with a rattle in it. I have no idea why that is his favorite, but it's been his clear favorite for at least a couple months now.

Blowing bubbles:

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Epic Flu

A long, long time ago (more than two weeks ago) it all began in a place just like this (this exact place, in fact). It began with Asher. And there was much washing of bed linens and pillows and carpet. And there was yelling. Top-of-the-lungs, only-heard-in-horror-films yelling. And it continued with Samuel. And there was much diaper changing and bathing and clothes changing and clothes washing and cuddling. And then it took a small break (thank goodness!) for Kelly and Roko's visit and my big baby shower. But then it was back with Naomi. And there was more washing of bed linens and pillows and carpets. And more lost sleep for the whole house. And much crying and whining. And then it moved on to Isaiah. And there was more washing and laundry and lost sleep - but there was also silence. Eerie silence. I debated sleeping on his bedroom floor because he never made a peep even when ... (you don't want to know).

And then we thought maybe it was done.

But it wasn't. Isn't. Mom got it. And 4 days later, I still feel like crud! And now Dad's got it, too. And I feel terrible for having sent my kids back to school just two days after they were so sick, because if they still felt like I feel today, it's not good.

This flu really is epic. Certainly nothing like a 24 hour bug. Will it ever end? It feels like maybe it's been so long since this all began that we're in risk of starting the whole cycle over again. We've gone through an entire box of Saltines in those few weeks. And gallons of Pedialyte and Kool-Aid. And loaves of toast. ...But on the upside, we're saving on milk!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

More Roko and Kelly

I know it was a week ago that they left, but I am just now getting around to blogging the last of the Kelly and Roko visit. It was just such a blast! Kelly and I realized that we have a ton in common. We enjoy similar craftyness, we have similar parenting styles, and we're both way cool. I just really enjoyed having Kelly around. And Roko was just killing me with how much he reminded me of my brother. It was like having a little tiny Mark running around my house! And run around my house he did. It didn't take him long at all to start following the pack.

Roko wore this pirate patch for an entire day - including our trip to Costco and a few other errands.
The day of the baby shower Kelly, Ruth and I took the kids to the mall to kill some time without messing up the house. We rode the carousel.
Here's everybody walking through the mall parking lot. Aren't they the picture of extended family togetherness?