Sunday, February 27, 2011


I knew we were supposed to get an inch or two of snow last night, but I was quite surprised to wake up to a generous 4-5 inches this morning. 

On one hand, I'm a little tired of the snow, but on the other hand - it does make things prettier, and this wasn't so much that it was going to prevent us leaving the house or anything.  So, eh, it's fine. 

But here's the thing.

Ever since the first snow of the season, there are two things Abby wants to do when she sees that it snowed.  1) Jump in the snow 2) Make a snowman. 

Every time it snows she gets excited and says "I go jump in the snow!!!  I make a snowman!!!"  

Well, she has jumped in the snow a few times - but that was hard to do when we were 2 feet under.  And, a lot of the time, the snow was too icy, too dry, too wet, or it was too cold or too windy or too something to be outside for snowman making.  But, it never fails.  She always asks "Abby go jump in the snow?  Abby make a snowman?"  And my response is usually "We'll see, maybe later..."  

...and we never do. 

So, this morning.  I told Abby to go look out the window.  She went and got her trusty step, hopped up and looked out side.  She said "Oh, Snow!"  Then (brace yourself, your heart may break) she says while looking down at the ground and shaking her head, "Abby no jump in the snow.  No snowman for Abby.  No jump, no snowman. Not today" 

--> this is the sound of my heart shattering into a billion pieces. 

because you should have heard her tone of voice.  It was the tone of voice that said "I really want NOTHING more than to go outside mom, but I know the drill, I know the answer, and I understand I'm not going to get to go outside and play in the snow, and I'm really really really sad about that, but I'm used to being let down, so it's ok"

I really did want to cry.  It was so obvious I'd failed her all those times before.

But, instead, I decided that EVERYTHING in the world could wait today.  At that moment, there was absolutely nothing more important than putting on our coats and boots and going to build a snowman with my little girl.  It was like a-deadly-meteor-is-heading-for-Earth-and-I-wouldn't-have-cared-important.  I could have been in labor and I would have made that baby wait.

As soon as I told Abby we were going outside - she burst into a little ball of excitement.  She ran around, she found an old bell rattle of mine and started shaking it while dancing in circles and singing "jingle bells" at the top of her lungs (I was surprised she remembered it all and sang it so completely).  Such a winter's baby she is.  It was fun to see her so excited about going outside.

So, that's what we did.  And luckily, the snow was a pretty good snowman consistency.  A wee bit on the dry side, but we made it work.  We only made a small one since the snow took a bit of work to stick together, but I think Abby had a great time anyway.  We stayed outside for probably an hour or so.

little dry ice flakes

rolling and patting the base

 Helping me put on the nose and eyes

Our little snowman.  Turns out, m&ms don't make the best snow-decorations.  :)  But, you know what?  Abby was pretty darn excited about the idea. 

this face makes me laugh

After we'd made our snow man, we made snowballs.  Dozens of them.  Abby very much liked that part. She took each one I made, one by one, and threw it either down the stairs or over the rails.  Such a simple activity, but one she didn't get tired of.  She laughed every time she threw one.

snowballs, ready for throwing

Carrying this one off for it's final flight...

 We even attempted snow angles...but she got snow on her neck and couldn't really relax. :)

After the snowman was made, the snowballs all thrown, and we'd taken our turns digging, sweeping, rolling around, dancing and singing in the snow...we were both ready to come inside to warm up.  Hot chocolate was in order.

"Abby, can you smile pretty?"
(sorry I asked)

As we were putting away our boots and hats and gloves and coats, Abby said "Thank you mama, that was weally weally fun"

And that, my friends, meant the world to me this morning.


"Nobody can be uncheered with a balloon"

I find that a $1 balloon is a pretty enticing reward for good little girls.

Luckily, for mommy, this little girl understood when mommy accidently let the balloon slip away into the sky later.

She says, "it's ok mama. Bye bye balloon! Blue star go way in sky."

Such a sweet girl.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Thursday, February 24, 2011

temperamental artist

As previously blogged, Tuesday Abby got to participate in painting a canvas that will be used as wall decor for the playspace at our nearby mall.  Today, we got to go back to see the final framed product and get her picture taken with it.

We got to the mall around 9:30 only to discover that the playspace wasn't open yet. Nothing was open yet.  So, we just entertained ourselves for a while.  We went to look at the fish tank outside the Vietnamese food place, we watched elevators, we rode elevators, we watched workers fix a broken escalator, we walked and walked...and walked.

She loves the fish tank, but the eel is her favorite.  Unfortunately, eel was sleeping early this Thursday morning.  So, we spent our time watching the (very cool) puffer fish.  Did you know that they look like they're smiling at you?  It's freaky and fun all at once.  Smiling fish...

watching the elevators

Eventually, the playspace opened and we spent an hour or so just playing.  Around 11, the photography people got there and started snapping shots of the kids with their paintings.  It took a little convincing to get Abs to participate.  She was clinging to me monkey-style, wouldn't look at anyone, and only said "no no no no no no no no!" to anything and everything anyone asked her.  But, with some help from her friend doggie - we eventually got her to not only hold her painting - but smile too.

I can't believe how big she looks here.  Such a little girl.  It's beyond insane. 

Abby's painting (last one) hanging on the wall.  The mall will rotate the pictures every few months and will do this for the next 2-3 years.  Then, I guess, we get it back.  
(also, I don't know why Abby's painting is the only one with a thick frame.  Chances are they ran out of the normal ones...but we're gonna go with the theory that it means she "won" ;o) 

Abby's friends arrived shortly after our picture.  She played with them for a while before a few things happened.  First, she'd been playing for an hour and a half.  Second, she was overstimulated by all the kids, the photographers, the parents, ect.  Third, she was hungry.  Not a good combo people.  She started testing the waters by doing things like standing on top of the slide, not moving out of the way, being obstinant.  When I corrected her, she would ask "time out??"  Well, my first mistake was not giving her a time out for those offenses.  In hindsight, I see why she was trying to get a time out.

Next, she runs out of the playspace.  She's barefoot, I'm in socks (and um, kinda pregnant) so it wasn't easy catching her.  While I carried her back into the playspace, Abby lost it.  She started scratching at my face, pulling my hair, yelling at me, wiggling...  This was NOT my child.  She's never done that.  

I sat her down in my lap and held her.  When I put her down, she went up to little kid (12months?) and pulled her down - on purpose - VERY deliberately.  Then she looked at me.  We apologized to the kid and her mom and I swept Abby away and put her in the only corner I could find.  It was actually a good spot - she couldn't see anyone and I just sat on the other side of the corner out of site.  I decided to let her sit as long as she wanted.  At 8 minutes, she peeked out and I asked her if she was done.  

"Ummm, not yet" was her response.

She stayed in time out for around 12 mins.  She came out, gave me a big hug, apologized, gave me kisses, and went off to play.

Totally different child after that. 

So, I've come to realize (I know I know, it's SO obvious now) that she just knows when she needs a time out.  She knows when she needs some quiet time, and so I'm going to give it to her.  There's still a fine line to be navigated when she's using them to regroup and using them to stall (like before leaving the house or before bedtime)  Anyway.  I was glad to see that I got my sweet kid back after her break.

Moving on.  We had lunch together.  She was so extremely lovey during lunch.  She kept giving me tons of hugs and kisses.  She kept hugging my head to her chest, patting my hair and saying "Good job mommy!  You did a  really really good job, I'm SO pwoud of you!"  So funny.  It was a very welcomed change of demeanor. 

Home. Nap.  Took Kyle to school.  Grocery shopping.  

After groceries, Abby looked at me with these really big saucer blue eyes and said "Mommy?  I get a tweat?  I get a tweat with mommy?  I weally weally good in store!  Abby wuvs mommy.  Mommy want a tweat too?  Ok!  Sure!  Let's Gooooo!"  

Am I supposed to be able to resist that?  No. I thought not.  I took her to the bakery next door and she got a cookie.  A big cookie for being a sweet girl. 

I love pictures of toddlers and cookies.  They just seem to go together.  

And, ladies and gents, there you have it.  Yet another day in the life.  I enjoyed the day - mostly.  We had our moments of patience-testing for sure.  That's my word for the month (year?): patience.  I need more patience and I'm constantly trying to remind myself to have it.  Perhaps I'll write about that later. 

Till then, here are a few more quick pics from lunch the other day.  I just love this girl.  She amazes me.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Tuesday with Abby

I like my job.  I really do.  And, I think that working a full time job - in some ways - allows me to be a better mom.  It forces me to be away from home and that helps me keep things in perspective.  A phrase I use often is, it allows me to miss Abby everyday.  

Having said that.  I'm extremely lucky because I don't have to work in the summer and I get vacations off during the year.  This is a vacation week for me.  Which means, I get to play stay at home mom.  :)

I'm not sure I would have made a good stay at home mom when Abby was in her infant stages.  I mean, I wouldn't have turned down the opportunity I don't think -but, I needed the mental breaks from being "on duty"  And while I don't think things would be "easier" now - they would be different.  I think I'd make a much better stay at home mom to my little 2 year old.  

Anyway, this is all a long introduction to say: We had a nice day today.  Busy, but good. 

We got up this morning and made breakfast, and ate breakfast, as a family.  That was nice.  We took Kyle to work and Abs and I headed to the library.  She was well behaved and we read lots of books.  She started with the baby books, then some other random ones, and then she discovered the train books and had me read her every train book she could find.  :)  As we were getting ready to leave, she had an attack of 2-year old behavior.  She was running away, wouldn't put on her coat, going limp noodle - and not in the least upset or fact, she seemed to be enjoying herself (which only pushed my buttons harder)  Luckily, after a time-out (which seemed to only work because she was so excited about getting one) - we were on our way again.

We left the library and headed to the mall.  The playspace is redecorating.  25 kids were able to reserve spots to come today and paint a canvas that will be hung in the room.  I was pretty excited about this - but as we've never tried any kind of painting that didn't involve our fingers, I wasn't sure what to expect from Abs.  We met 3 of her friends there, and Abby had a good time. :)

My little neat freak, was actually ALL about the brushes.  She didn't get any paint on her until the very end when she touched a bit on the edge of her canvas and immediately cried out, "mama! wipe! please!"

Her beautiful masterpiece!

 I couldn't get Abs to spend much more time on her painting after a point though, because she was all too aware that one of her friends (the little girl she played Tag with the other day) had gone up to the playspace to play.  Abby wanted to go too.  So, we and Abby's two other friends headed up to play.  We had a good time playing - but the room was super crowded - so we didn't spend as long as we sometimes do there. 

Instead, we headed to lunch at Bertucci's with Abby's friends Katie & Ellie (who are sisters)

Look at how cute these three are...holding hands everywhere they went today.

Katie & Ellie's mom is also expecting in the coming weeks.  They're having another girl.  :)   So, at lunch, we had 2 pregnant moms, 2 two-year olds, and a four year old.  There were, potentially, 7 girls at that table.  ;o)  We had a nice lunch - pizza and toddlers, what's not to love?  It was appropriately messy, hectic, and fun.  We headed home after that and Abs was down for a nap....but a short one. 

90 mins later, we were back in the car.  Took Kyle to school and were off to have more fun.  We stopped by my favorite thrift store just to kill some time.  We found a bunch of hats and Abby had as much fun putting them on herself as she did laughing at me in them too.  

this one was a little big.  ;)

"I a big lion! Growl!"

I mean, tell me that's not awesome.

After we were done playing, I asked Abby what she wanted to do.  She didn't want to go home - she wanted to "take a walk"  So, we drove down to a fun little part of town and we strolled around and window shopped for an hour.  Simple and fun.  It was good for her to be outside, and it was good for me to walk.  It was good for both of us to stop for ice cream. :)

JP Licks treat.  We love this place.  Abs actually only had m&ms since she refused to eat the ice cream.  She says it's "too cold!" and gets scared by it.  I'm assuming she'll get over that one day.  Abby was a lot of fun at the ice cream store. She was so happy, and being silly and very affectionate.  She's started patting my head and saying "good boy, mama!" Dunno what that's about.  She made me take a million pictures of her (of which ALL turned out terribly blurry because she was moving so much)

posing with her hat hair. ;)

silly girl

We headed back to the car to go pick up Kyle from school.   While we drove and waited, we sang songs and played games and talked about...everything from family to cats to how traffic lights work to where stars go in the morning to how much we love pickles.  It was great. 

At one point, a runner ran by our car.  Abby says, "Is that daddy?  Noooooooo, that's not daddy!"  She does that a lot, but this time, she spontaneously added, "That's Jesus!"

She was pretty insistent, so I'm glad to know she recognized him, even in his jogging hoodie.  

We picked up Kyle, we all came home, food, PJ's, more train books, and bed. 

What a great, exhausting day it's been.  I'm glad I didn't waste a minute of it.  However, I'm thinking that tomorrow, we'll dwell a little more on the "stay at home" part of being a stay at home mom.  ;-)

Sunday, February 20, 2011


Yesterday was a bit tiring, but a good day.  I decided I needed some time to myself, so while I won't say it was completely relaxing - not down time - it was still nice.  Abs really isn't that difficult to run errands with, but there's something about the freedom of shopping alone that is just that much less stressful.  

So, I left Abs to get some good Daddy time and I went out a bargain hunting.  

My first stop was to pick up a new chair off CL.  Since we're moving Abby's glider into the new nursery, I wanted to find her a new reading chair.  I wasn't really sure what I wanted - I thought about getting her a new glider.  A lot of the chairs I liked were too big for the space, but then I saw this one and liked it.  It's only 4 months old and in really good condition.  I paid $40 for it - which is what I consider "on the 'spensive side" fits, it's clean, and it goes well with her room. 

sorry I don't have a better picture, all off my phone today.

After I picked up the chair (or, more accurately, the sellers did since they insisted on doing all the lifting for me, so I really just watched the chair get loaded into my car), I headed to Target.  Alone.  ((dreamy sigh))

I treated myself to a frappaccino...because, well, just because.  I may or may not have asked for extra caramel.  And when she asked me, "Would you like whipped cream?"  I just looked at her with that look that says "really?  I just asked for Extra caramel, do I look like I'm about to skip the whipped cream?"  She laughed, and my drink was delicious.

I'm never able to save as much as I'd like at Target, but today I didn't do too badly.  I had several coupons to use, found several things on sale, and ended up with around 50% savings.  I got Abs several new dishes that were on 75% clearance for super cheap, and I scored myself a couple of packages of these new dinner napkins - which I love....but love more for $2.50.

Then it was time to hit the grocery store.  I had a coupon for most things I bought, and I got a good bit of stuff.  I ended up saving more than I spent, which is always good.  While I was at the store, I noticed a few things on sale that weren't advertised, so when I got home, I prepped a new round of coupons. 

After Abs woke up from nap, she and I made a second grocery run.  I was able to get all pictured - plus 5 boxes of oatmeal that I forgot to include for $3.41.  Woot!

The water, tissue, and oatmeal were free.  The chips and brownies were around .20 - .25 each.

Now, normally, we don't buy bottled water or chips.  Some of those things will be donated along with some of my other pantry stockpiled items.  I love the idea of taking advantage of free (or really cheap) grocery deals and then donating the goods.  It's a win-win for everyone. 

So, if you combine the two different grocery runs, I spent $28 this week and saved $80.  And THAT is why we print coupons, people.  ;)

Time for me to go get this Sunday started.  Hope you have a good one. 

Friday, February 18, 2011

tag, you're older.

Usually once a week, I take Abby to the mall down the road from our house.  This mall has an indoor playspace, and during these cold snowy months, it's a good place for Abby to get a chance to run and climb and play and burn off some energy.  It's also a good place for her to practice social skills, and we spend a good bit of time talking about manners and sharing and how to say hi to other kids.  Most of the time, she does fine.

Abby loves the playspace, but, as is typical for children her age, she doesn't really acknowledge the other kids too much.  She will wait her turn and share and she will climb along side another child - but she's not playing *with* them.  And that's fine. Totally normal.

But then, yesterday, she grew up. Right in front of my eyes.

The crowd had thinned out to us and two other kids.  A 15 month old girl and a nearly 3 year old girl.  The younger one spent her time watching everything going on, cautiously exploring her surroundings, but not venturing too far from her mom.  The 3 year old wanted to play with somebody, and Abby was the only option.

The girl goes up to Abby.
Girl: "Hi!  Do you want to play?"
Abby: "Ummm.  Ok!"
Girl: "Let's play tag"
Abby: "Sure."

I told the girl that Abby didn't know how to play tag, so then I explained it to Abby.  "When you play tag, you run and run and run and touch the other person (gently) and say TAG!"

Abby says, "Ok! Let's play tag!"

And off they went.  Now, it wasn't truly tag.  Both girls just had fun running after each other without rhyme or reason. Chasing each other down the room and back.  Occasionally, they would remember to touch the other and say "tag"  But, mostly, they were just taking turns chasing each other.  But they were having a blast. Giggles filled the room.  And Abs totally got it.

Abby then suggested, "Let's go play in car"
The girl agreed.

And so they sat in the car together and they drove to the store to buy apples mostly.  They also drove to the library, and somewhere else too...then they wanted to play tag again.

I took Abby to this same playspace last week - and she didn't so much as look at another child.  And here we are, 7 days later, and she's made a friend, and they're playing tag and (kinda trying to) play hopscotch and then they played several rounds of "ring around the rosie" holding hands and falling down and laughing together.  It was so odd.  She was suddenly so grown up.  I don't even think I blinked and I still nearly missed it.

I just watched them play, awestruck a little at how my little baby was suddenly a little girl.  At one point, I realized I was holding my breath.  I was just...I don't know.  It was like I was watching this whole side of Abby, that I barely knew existed, blossom right in front of me.

At one point during their play, I was so impressed when Abby stopped and said "My name is Abby!"  This new skill was one we'd been practicing in the car on the way to the mall.  How to introduce yourself and ask names.  The other girl said her name and Abby said, "Oh, hi....more tag?"

As it was time for everyone to go home, the girls put their shoes on together and sat next to each other on the bench while they both drank some water.  We shared an elevator and walked out to the car with them.

When we got in the car, Abby said "Mama!  I made a new fwiend!"

((Sigh.))  I'm so proud of her, but also, I want to completely stop time right now.  

She went on to recap the entire afternoon and every detail of what she and her new friend had done together.  The most memorable of which was, apparently, playing tag and drinking water.

We're going to meet up with Abby's new friend again next week, and I'm sure they'll both be thrilled.  And, maybe, I'll have a chance over the next few days to admit to myself that she's just growing up.  And it's breath taking to watch.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

when things work out

You know how sometimes, life makes things happen, and you sit back and think "well, that worked out well"  Like when that concert you want to attend happens to fall on a random Thursday holiday off work or when you need to call in sick but you got a snow day so you don't have to call in after all?  Or maybe when you find $4 in your coat pocket from last winter just as you pass a table of girl scouts selling cookies for $4 a box?  

Or like when you and your best friend are pregnant at the same time?

It's pretty cool.  :)

My friend Billie Jo and her husband are expecting their first little bundle o' joy in July.  To say that I'm excited about this is putting it all too mildly.  They made the public announcement not too long ago, so now it's safe to mention here. :)  These two are going to make the very best parents...and this child is already so blessed to have been entrusted to their little family.

But there is one memory that I want to record.  Billie Jo & Ricky currently live in Oregon.  Yes, that would be across the country from us.  Way too far.  They will be moving this summer (Yes, the same summer she's big and pregnant and having a baby) to Texas where they will be starting new careers - so at least then she'll be a *little* closer. But, for now, and for the past many years, we have taken up our places on opposite coasts.  

We were so fortunate to have them visit us in November.  It was a really great visit for many reasons.  But, one of those reasons?  Fate would have it that they would find out about the impending arrival of "baby-jo" on that trip.  So special.  Because that meant - when my Billie Jo found out she was going to be a mom, I got to hug her with a real hug when we would normally be 3000 miles apart.  And, for once, I didn't have to "wish I were there" because I was.  And I got to see, first hand, that all too familiar look of panic and joy on Ricky's face.  It was simply coincidence that things happened that way...or maybe it wasn't, I'll never know.  I'm just happy to have the memory.

We spent that day traipsing around Boston on what was an unseasonably warm and gorgeous day.  Again, it was all so fitting.  

So, I just wanted to document.  To say, publicly, that I'm very excited for our friends.  I can't wait to watch their journey as parents unfold.  That I feel blessed to have them in my life, and that I know this baby will feel the same (well, not as a teen of course, but the rest of the time. ;)  

Love you both...I mean, you three. Always always.

two mommys.

ultrasound etc

We had our final ultrasound yesterday afternoon.  Kyle and I waited for an hour in the waiting room, which was a little annoying, but not the end of the world.  The appointment was quick - just a few quick measurements to make sure the baby was growing as it should.  We got a few okay pictures, but it was nice to see the kiddo on screen again.  I can tell that s/he has gotten bigger since our last appointment.  It looks more and more like a baby.  And, while it's a little hard to tell in this picture, I think the kid looks a lot like Abby did.  I still don't have a strong feeling on a gender either way, but this brother or sister shares some of the same features.  

baby #2 at 31 weeks

The baby measured in at about 3lbs and 12 oz.  Right at the 50%tile.  So, all is well.  Now, we just wait until we get to meet the kid face to face.  

And here's what baby #2 looks like from the outside at 31 weeks. 

I'm definitely feeling pregnant these days.  Bigger.  I've outgrown several maternity shirts....and you probably don't want to get me started on my opinion of maternity shirts that are out-growable.  It's a MATERNITY shirt - make them longer people!  It's as if the designers think "Well, I could add another inch or two of length...but then it would actually work as a maternity shirt, and I only want pregnant customers who don't look pregnant and who wear normal clothes for 9 months and who fit into their size two jeans 24 hours after delivery"  Or something like that.  It's beyond me, honestly.  

anyway.  moving on.

I feel good most of the time.  I have the normal 3rd trimester aches, pulls, weird little things - but none of it worth complaining about here.  Not today anyway.  ;)

I've been eating sweets more than I should lately.  My lost sweet tooth found it's way back, and with Valentine's Day in the mix...Well, let's just say that I should probably have turned into a chocolate chip cookie by now.  But, it's all good.  I'm trying to keep it in check as I have to go in for my next appointment in a week or two. 

What else?

I've stopped doing certain things.  I can't carry Abby around for as long.  I do still lift her and carry her up and down stairs, and put her in the car and such - I mean, I have to.  But, if Kyle is around, or if I can get away with her walking - then that's what we do.  I'm finally at the point where it was becoming uncomfortable to have her sit with/on me while we read bedtime stories in her chair.  So, we've moved to her bed and now she sits beside me while we read.

I've tried to start practicing "waiting" with Abby.  If she asks me to do something, sometimes I just have her practice waiting...just for the practice of it.  I'll say "mommy can't get you milk right now because I'm doing (xyz).  Abby has to wait"  It's my mediocre attempt at getting her used to some of the new vocab that comes with having a sibling.  She's doing really well with it though - and will often tell me "Abby did a really good job waiting!"  She's a doll. 

Ok, that's enough for now.  I gotta get back to work and get some more stuff accomplished before I leave work to get other things accomplished. :)  Have a great Thursday.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

8 weeks

I just made myself a work calendar - I wrote it all out on a single sheet of paper.  Next week is vacation, so it doesn't count.  After that, I have 7 weeks of work left before I take my maternity leave.  Realistically, I have more like 6 weeks since I'll be trying to keep my workload light towards the end (juuuuuust in case).  I have all my days planned out between now and when I leave - and seeing it all on paper like that seems...kinda crazy.  Things are speeding up.

There are only 8 weeks left until I meet this child.

I'm going to let that sink in.


8 weeks. Then?  Then I have two kids.

I've been feeling odd lately.  I think the word I'm looking for is flustered, but then again, maybe that word is too strong.  I feel like I have too many loose ends that need to be wrapped up.  I have loose ends at work that I need to address.  I have loose ends at home - like getting things ready for baby.  Then there are the day to day loose ends of errands and chores and little tiny things that need to be done, but are so easily swept off until tomorrow.  I feel like I'm always just one step behind where I need to be.

What I want, is to have everything put together.  I want to be organized and ahead of the game.  I want my house to be clean and my work stuff to be done so that I can just sit and BE and think for a minute.

That's it - I feel like I don't have time just to sit and think.  I'm busy.  And, I'm not complaining that I'm busy - busy is good - it's just, I wish I had a little time to myself to just sit and think....without being totally exhausted and crashing.  Cause right now?  That's what happens if I sit.  At the end of the day, I finally sit down and I crash.  I'm exhausted, y'know?  I want to be not-exhausted and to just sit and think.

When I was pregnant with Abby, I sat in her nursery so often.  I watched the sunrise while I sat in her glider, my hand on my belly feeling her move, and I just daydreamed and thought about her and us and wondered what would be.  That's what I want to do.  It was so peaceful.

I haven't had time to daydream about this baby.  Not to the same extent.  Sometimes as I drift off to sleep, I think about things, but then I'm asleep.  I'm going to meet this child in 8 weeks and we don't have names picked out.  While we do finally have the crib in the nursery - that's the only thing we have in there.  The room is not ready, we haven't bought any baby stuff....other than a pack of diapers.  And, really, that's ok, because I know we don't *need* very much stuff.  But, there's a part of me that longs to clean and put together and (dreamy sigh) Decorate.  I want to nest.  Like a big mama bird.

Basically, I just want some more time that doesn't include writing reports or washing dishes or picking up toys or anything else so that I can give this new baby some of the attention s/he deserves and get things ready.  So that things will be more real, so that I'll be more prepared mentally and emotionally for this huge transition that is coming faster than I can wrap my mind around.

I hope this hasn't come across as me complaining too much.  Because, I have nothing to complain about. Sure, things are busy and I'm tired - so what.  I know that, in the end, everything will work out and life will keep rolling along - regardless of whether the nursery is decorated or the house is spotless. But, it's helpful for me to type these things out anyway.  It does help me think.

And, I think, once I find a moment to get my mind wrapped around all of these changes, I'm going to find that I'm really really excited about this.  Nervous, of course.  But also, very excited.

8 weeks.  Here we go. :)

Monday, February 14, 2011

Valentine's 2011

I love holidays.  Just do.  I really like planning and doing projects and taking pictures and dressing up and celebrating the day - any day, really.

But, I'm going to admit that this year I just didn't have everything put together.  I felt like Valentine's Day just snuck up on me.  I was kinda sad when I realized that I was not going to have time to make those super cute valentines day cards with Abby and send out to all our friends and family.  I didn't put together some overly themed but cute Valentine's outfit for a photoshoot for her.  We had nothing planned.

So, On Sunday afternoon, I tried to get some festivities in.  We did some finger painting and made some valentine's day cards for a few people and decorated a bag for Kyle's gifts from Abby.

decorating daddy's bag

she actually told me what to write. 
 "Mama, put 'daddy' right here.  Make a heart here.  Make 'abby' over here..."

When Kyle got home that night, we gave him his little bag of goodies and gave Abby her little bag of goodies.  She got some candy, some knick-knacks, a cute shirt and some big-hit stickers from Aunt Jennifer and Uncle Ben (the inventor of rice)  ;)

...and a red balloon.  :)

Abby enjoying her "trick-or-treat vawentwine"

We put Abs to bed and Kyle and I had our own Valentine's dinner at home.  Steaks, asparagus, and twice baked potatoes made for a nice dinner.  We enjoy both the splurge of cooking a nice meal as well as the savings from not going out.  We kept it simple, but it was nice.

This morning, I made Kyle some heart shaped blueberry muffins and coffee before I had to head to work.  A small gesture to help get this Monday morning going.

Work was work, and then on with our afternoon.  Abs and I headed to the library after we dropped Kyle off at school.  Got a few books, and did a little shopping for daddy. :)  While we were out, we scored a heart shaped cookie cutter on the cheap and decided to make cookies when we got home.  See what I mean about things not really being planned out?

Nevertheless, the cookies were yummy. 

Kyle got home just as Abby and I were reading night-time stories.  He called Abby out in the hall and when she came back into the room, she was carrying an all too familiar box from daddy.  Kyle has spoiled me more than once with a gift from the same place we got my wedding rings from.  It's a tradition of sorts (or quickly becoming one ;)

I can honestly say that I didn't think I was getting anything for Valentine's Day - beyond our nice dinner and a shoulder rub.  And, I can also honestly say, I was really fine with that.  But, he surprised me anyway.  I think it's lovely.  He included a note that pointed out that life is good - with all Four of us.

Kyle and I decided to spoil ourselves and we ordered in tonight.  Nice treat.  :)

So, in the end, it's been a nice holiday.  A little last minute and disorganized perhaps (or maybe that's just how I feel on my end...)  But, lovely, nonetheless.  I'm not sure I have the energy at the moment to really delve into how happy I am with my little family - and my big family - and my friends....

But, just know that I'm so thankful and that I try not to take any of you for granted.  
Much love all around.  

life is good

This pretty much says it all.  Life is so so good. 

Sunday, February 13, 2011

big girl bed

Yesterday was a super busy day.  I was running errands from 8am until 9pm with not a lot of downtime in between, but the end result was that we were able to pick up all the things we needed to set up Abby's big girl bed.  Big day.

I'd been looking for beds for a few months now.  I'm picky and cheap, which is a difficult combination.  I ended up contacting a woman about a bed I saw on craigslist.  She mentioned that she had other beds not listed and when I asked if she had anything in a darker wood - she did.  And, I was sold.  So, I picked up Abby's new bed on Saturday morning.

I love that the bed isn't new.  I love that it's old and dark wood and has a lot of character.  I don't know who it used to belong to and I don't know how old it really is.  And while it's in great condition - it's obviously been loved too.  I'm happy with it.

We didn't tell Abby about it until that morning either.  But, then we really started in with the "big girl bed" stuff.  She caught right on.  As soon as I brought the bed upstairs, we put it together to measure some things and Abby just laid down right in the middle of the empty frame and pretended to sleep.

silly girl

As the rest of the day went on, we were able to procure a mattress and box-spring, slats, bedding, a guard rail and all the odds and ends we were lacking.  I'll spare you all the mundane details.  But, just know that it took 2 trips to get the right length of slats cut and we had to return our guard rail twice before finding a third one that actually wasn't dysfunctional.

Helping us get slats cut. ;)

So, this morning, we made the switch.  I didn't really know what to expect from Abs.  The first thing I heard her say when she woke up this morning was "Yay! big girl bed today!"  So funny.  I was happy that she was looking forward to it.  She helped me take the crib apart, she handed me tools and put things away for me.  I asked her if she wanted to give her crib a hug and kiss bye-bye.  She said, "Umm, no.  I go get my big girl bed now"  Sorry crib, I promise she loves you.

Abby helped us put together the big bed too - she was so funny carrying the bed slats (or trying to) from room to room.  She would drag them a few feet and sit down with a big exaggerated "whew! That's really heavy!"  She could not wait to get the bed put together.  We had to run some more errands to get a few more things, but everything was ready by naptime.

I dunno.  I'm cautiously optimistic.  Maybe it just hasn't dawned on her yet that she *can* get out of bed.

I put her down for nap, just like always, told her I'd see her when she woke up and left.  She chattered quietly for about 15 mins and it's been silent for the past 45 mins or so now.  I'm pretty sure she didn't get out of bed.  Times like this I kinda wish we had a video monitor. ;)  So, hopefully nap time goes off without a hitch.  I know night time might be a totally different story.  And of course, once it dawns on her that she can play and get out - we'll have to deal with that.

But, right now, for today?  Things are going well.  :)  I can't believe she's this grown up already.

Also?  Seeing the crib in the baby's room...kinda made this pregnancy real again.  This is all very surreal.

Anyway, here are a few more pictures of Abby and her very first big girl bed.

Abby's new bed!

She was so excited to get to get on it. :)

I think this picture makes her look so big...and so tiny, all at the same time.  
(probably doesn't help that those PJ's are nearly 12 months too small. ;)

All tucked in for the first time.

Abigail - Your daddy and I both are so so so proud of you.  For a million reasons.  But, one of them is how wonderfully you've taken this initial change.  You continue to impress us.  Congratulations on this big milestone baby girl.  We love you!