Tuesday, December 21, 2010

A time to drool…

And a time for cold rainy days and baking Christmas cookies for the neighbors…a time for sitting in bumper to bumper traffic, joining the army of procrastinators, and wondering why I waited (again)….a time for Christmas parties with youth group kids…a time for laundry and diapers and drool…a time for the hardest semester of one’s life (that would be Sam’s) and a time for replenishing lost sleep…a time for finals and a time for FREEDOM!

Back to the drool….Eva is teething.  Overall she’s handling it quite well with just a little fussiness.  However, her fine motor skills haven’t quite caught up to the tooth progression and it’s very cute. :-)

(Note:  I had written a lovely post a few days ago, lots of pictures and narrative that for once flowed to the page without a huge effort.  I was enthusiastic about sharing it and just needed to crop another picture or two when life happened.  Then there was a computer problem…a restart….and I had forgotten to hit “save”.  So still under the shock of this new discovery, I come to you frustrated, resisting the impulse to close the program in disgust, and will muscle through a post, because it’s not your fault I am a space cadet.)

I bring you the drool machine….

It was not long before the poor duck became a specimen of hopeless sogginess, so we tried a different tactic…



Mmmm….pink rubber…just what I’ve always wanted to chew on, too.


“Uh…it fell out and it’s sitting on me.  What am I supposed to do with it?”


Target practice…




This is not working!


Mamma to the rescue. :-)


Bumbo: the greatest baby invention!  (Bumbo, Boppy, Bouncer, Binky….it’s too much for a poor brain to keep track of!)


Fingers are still the most fascinating thing…


Daddy time….working without a deadline!


Hangin’ with Mamma….



“Chicka, chicka, chicka…”


A little snapshot of life. :-)

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Just a Thursday

Well, not just any Thursday.  It’s finals week for Sam and this is his quote of the day.  (Though he doesn’t know it yet.)

“I’ll thank God when all this is over…then maybe my eye will stop twitching.  It’s kind of annoying.”

I am continually amazed at how Sam keeps on going and going, never giving into weariness, and always with a cheerful attitude, in the face of months of sleep deprivation, a shocking amount of work, and too many deadlines to count….where it stops?  Christmas break.  Countdown: 2 days.

So I took Eva on her first field trip today!  I laugh to think that it’s really begun!  The whole field trip thing.  My childhood is full to the brim with strong, happy, vivid memories of Mom taking us on zillions of field trips.  Having experienced the beginnings of what it takes to bring kids on outings myself, and now adding the work of dragging baby paraphernalia everywhere I wish to go, I realize what a true labor of love it was for Mom to give us such rich and wide experiences growing up!  The remembrance still amazes me, and it’s rather daunting now that I’m diving in myself and want Eva’s childhood to be just as full of wonder and stimulation as mine was.  I have big footprints to fill!

My friend Erin was the brains behind our excursion and I refuse to admit how long it took the two of us to haul ourselves and our wee ladies to the Natural Science Museum in downtown Raleigh.



Eva was impressed with the fish, giving them a wide-eyed look and the compliment of expressive eyebrows….but then she zoned out and fell asleep for the rest of the walk through.  One step at a time: first make it out of the house, then work on nap-time coordination.

I’d never before experienced a butterfly conservatory….one that even housed it’s very own sloth.DSC_0600

Harper joins Eva in dreamlandDSC_0601

Before we were married, I discovered that Sam likes french manicured nails…on girls. :-)  I haven’t cut Eva’s nails in a few days, as he discovered her natural “frenchies” and wanted pictures which just weren’t happening right away.  A few minutes of Daddy time during a very, very tiny breather from exams:  (apologies for the fuzz)


She was so sleepy and out of it after a poor nap at the museum!



Fingers are the most fascinating thing in her world these days.


Eva’s little personality is asserting itself more and more each day.  Spunky, sweet, incredibly patient, very opinionated, and all with a heart-melting, fun-loving slimy grin.  “She is my squishy…

Oh, and the “cultcha” continued into this evening.  Eva and I went to a highschool Christmas concert to cheer on one of the girls in my small group.  I was pleasantly surprised….it was very well done.  But full days are no longer just full, they’re exhausting…I think this post makes sense.  But if it doesn’t, you get the idea, and I’m going to join my fat little muffin in dreamland.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Hot off the press

This mamma thing is so much fun!  It’s as if Someone dropped off a treasure box on August 30 and everyday I get to watch in delight for the next surprise gift. 

I was getting my veggies ready to juice this morning when I heard a little tune coming from Eva’s bouncer.  “They”, whoever they are who come up with these obnoxious ditties to program into children’s toys, work for Fisher Price.  And up until now Sam has taken great delight in pulling the little froggy’s ring and playing that tune over and over again, in spite of my moans of protest.  But Sam was at class and I whirled around to see Eva’s little chubby fingers in a death grip around that orange ring.  I thought “Oooooh!  Look at what my little muffin just did!”….but then calmed down and thought, well, maybe it was just a coincidence and waited.  Nope.  I then chortled with glee, told her she was SUCH a good girl and like a silly school girl (or rather enamored new mamma) danced around her seat snapping pictures from every angle, as she grabbed that little ring again and again and pulled.  It’s amazing how the tinkling music suddenly ceased to be annoying. :-)


Reach for it….






Well, as I’ve sat here cropping photos, maybe the tinkling music is losing its charm.

Two parting shots from yesterday….

Chillin’ with Daddy while Mamma dashes out on a marathon grocery run….



Chillin’ with Mamma while she chats with her mamma…


I think the days of those pink pant are numbered.  What a chubbette!  Takes after her daddy and auntie Leah. :-)

Still need to post pics from Thanksgiving!  But what’s REALLY needed is kicking into gear and packing for VA.  I wanted to pause to share today’s newest discovery with you!

Monday, November 22, 2010

I think I’m in love…


That is heaven.  That is my new favorite food.  Curried kale and sweet potatoes….sweet, spicy, warm, earthy.  Of course, with craisins on top!  I do have two other first loves, but this one ranks third right now. :-)  The state farmer’s market is a mere 3 minutes away from our apartment and I am spoiled rotten by the freedom to pop down there nearly every day if I wish.  I came home laden with piles of gorgeous produce the other day and was carried away by artistic visions of arranging its beauty on our kitchen table and snapping lovely photos worthy to post on the blog, provoking wistful sighs from all of you.  But, the kale was soaking wet, the sweet potatoes and beets were filmed with dirt, I was in a hurry to make dinner, (I’m sure the necessity of feeding Eva was mixed somewhere in there) and well, I wanted to eat the above, not just dream about it.  :-)

My second love during her tummy time the other day:

“Oooh, pwitty, pwitty…”


She was fascinated by the quilt’s colors and patterns…


Ok, Mamma, that was a lot of effort….


She loves her little froggy and turtles and contentedly talks and laughs at them for ages.  Just today, instead of wildly batting at the toys hanging off the bouncer, she began gently reaching out and touching them carefully, over and over again.  It’s such fun to watch her grow and develop!



Eva is such a lovey baby and I wonder if she ever tires of my incessant kisses? :-)

I’ve been in major experimental mode lately and will leave you with another successful discovery…


That happy cup is cacao pudding….any guesses as to the secret ingredients?

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Morning conversation

Eva loves to “talk”, especially in the morning when her little tummy is full, diaper is clean and dry, and the sun is streaming through the slider.  Or is it mamma’s punk rocker hair sticking up in every direction?  I attempted to get her going and catch it on film this morning.  She’s usually much noisier, giggly and wiggly, but this time was distracted by the camera.  I hope you enjoy a little taste of the fun we have!   These days, I want to just sit on the couch and “chat”…forget the laundry!

I’m sorry the video is so long!  I wanted to take out the boring bits, where I’m rambling and she’s only staring, but I don’t know how to use the editing software.  I’ll ask Sam to give me a lesson so future videos will be shorter….only clips of the fun stuff!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


When you’re out and about, do you smile?  Have you ever thought about smiling as a mission?  A ministry? 

I spent last weekend in Greensboro at the Women of Faith conference and was challenged by one of the guest speakers, Andy Anderson.  In the middle of his hilarious talk, he gave an example about being different--a bold, “living” Christian without really saying much at all….just smiling.  We were in stitches over his antics illustrating how when you sincerely smile at others, they impulsively respond with a smile, and they have no clue why they’re smiling at you.  You could ask them anything with a huge, gaping grin on your face and they’ll grin back, affirming whatever you said.   Then, Andy chortled, start adding that happy little nod in there and you’ll get even more enthusiastic responses.

Yes, yes, of course when I go out, I try to be pleasant and polite, sometimes with the motive to cheer up the clerk, cashier or customer service rep, thinking that it’s the right thing to do, that they have a rough job dealing with crabby, self-focused shoppers and I don’t want to add to that burden, etc.  Sometimes that attitude is driven by fear, because I was on the receiving end of bad attitudes while working in a restaurant.  But passively gliding through such interactions doesn’t take much effort (unless I’m having a REALLY rotten day).  And, to be honest, sometimes even being nice is being selfish….I want everyone to be pleased with me or to treat me nicely, ‘cause I’m trying to be sweet.

But REALLY smiling….the kind of smile where you look the person in the eye with a purposeful, sincere, I-care-about-you-and-want-to-shine-the-light-of-Jesus-into-your-soul kind of look, takes way more effort.  It’s different then smiling so someone will be pleasant in return or to keep the grade of their work day from dipping.  Active loving is harder than that and I am no longer a part of the equation.  I have to forget about me and make it all about them.  It becomes a ministry and a gift of love and I must really pay attention.

Summoning the courage to search out and hold someone’s gaze and not let it go until they “accept” my smile isn’t easy for a recovering wall flower and introvert.  Talk about butterflies.  But I began experimenting and the results are encouraging….I was prepared to minister, but I didn’t expect to have my heart drawn towards the “stranger on the street”. 

It took a few eternal seconds of purposeful, earnest smiling in Target the other day (stomach flipping), before the customer service rep finally noticed.  She gave me another look, right in the eye, and called me sweetie.

DSC_0197  P.S. Taking a baby with you is cheating….

Tuesday, November 16, 2010


So I’ve been forming many grand plans for this blog, composing clever posts, and inventing marvelous layouts with pictures of our little family (some taken and some not)….all in my head.  Yes, sadly, I’ve failed again at updating you, my dear friends and family, as to the goings on in our lives.   Admit it, all you really want are pictures of our “muffinhead”.  Where that nickname came from I don’t know, but it’s sticking, and at this point, she doesn’t seem to mind.


I adore kid’s overalls and I love dressing Eva in green as it brings out her bit of flaming fuzz.  But when the overalls covered the three hearts on her onsie, I needed help fending off the “what a cute boy” comments.  Hmmm, quick fix:  the hat lovingly knitted for Eva by her “auntie” Kelsey. :-)

Did I mention she “talks” to us ALL the time?  The giggles, cooing, smiles, wiggles, and “conversation” turns Mamma and Daddy into puddles of glee.  Forget dishes, I just want to sit on the couch and “chat”.


Melissa was here this past weekend and Eva very earnestly tried to tell her something….what, I wonder?


Camo baby….Auntie Leah’s influence.  Unfortunately that day, this way cool outfit lasted through only one nap.


My six week (which was more like eight week) check-up with Dr. Tahtawi.  She was an amazing doctor and I’ll miss being her patient!  Check out the pudge popping over those jeans. :-)


Studying with Daddy…


Getting ready to go for a walk in her most amazingly amazing jogging stroller…


There!  And I’ve left out SO much….but the posts are spinning in my poor befuddled mommy brain and I hope I can bring them into some sort of order soon!

Our Fuzzy Pumpkin is a delight and makes us laugh.  (Daddy’s nickname which ever grows in popularity.)

Much love to you all!