Hello, Sophie. Meet Button.

She can just barely grasp Sophie the Giraffe in her tiny hands.  The little growling sounds she was making were too much.


Conversations with a Three Year Old

My little boy is so much fun to talk to and his vocabulary has grown leaps and bounds.  He amazes me with his thought process.  He makes me laugh with his one-liners.  His memory is incredible.  Here are just a few quotes and conversations from this week.

"Baby Sister, you shine bright like the sun!"
Said while hugging her after his Monday afternoon nap.

"I want to go fishing in that pond with grandpa with my Buzz Lightyear fishing pole."
Said out of the blue this past weekend while he was painting his butterflies.  The last (and only time) he went fishing with his own fishing pole with grandpa was over Labor Day weekend last year.  Is it me or is a memory from over 6 months ago pretty awesome for a 3 year old to remember?  He does it all time!

Bug: "Mom, I dreamed about school last night."
Me: "You did?  What about school?"
Bug: "Everything! Everything!"
This was a simple conversation but meant so much to me for two reasons.  1. It was the first time he's ever told me about a dream (Awesome!) and 2. it was a good dream about school.  We had a very rough start with his entry into preschool.  LOTS of tears, night terrors, anxiety...  I was very close to pulling him out, but all is good.  Now, he just tells me I take a "long, long, long time to pick him up."

First Day of Preschool

We pass several fields of crops on the way to work.  Last week, they dumped some huge manure piles on a particular field for spreading.  We talked about the "poop dirt" (how else would you explain manure??), how that was the stinky smell we were smelling and how it helps the crops grow.
Driving to work yesterday morning I said: "Hey Bug, it looks like they spread the poop dirt on the fields! The piles are gone."
Bug: "The craps will be beautiful!!"
Ha ha! If he only knew how funny that mispronunciation was!!

And lastly, I had a very sweet talk with him on the way to preschool this morning. Bug has just noticed that there are people of different colors.  His teachers and classmates are a rainbow of colors.  They talked about notable black figures for Black History Month in February and it was his first time he'd ever talked about different colors of people because at home we've never differentiated.  He's realized that with people, what we call black is actually brown, so he now calls anything that is brown, black.  Here's how the conversation went:
Bug: "How did we get a white baby sister?"
Me: "Mommy and Daddy are both white, so you and baby sister were born that way."
Bug: "No, Daddy is black."  (Daddy is very tan, unlike my pasty self.)
Me: "Daddy is darker than us because his skin is tanned.  There are many different colors of people, honey. Some are cream colored and some are light brown and some are dark brown.  They're all beautiful aren't they?"
Bug: "Yep. They are."

My heart smiled.


We made butterflies with watered down paint and coffee filters this weekend.  It was a dang cold day, but I'm feeling Spring in the air.  How 'bout you?  Ready to fling open those windows and let some fresh air in soon?  I can almost taste it...


A Comparison

Bug and Button - Saint Patrick's Day 2008 and 2011.  One month difference in age. If there were ever two kids who looked alike...

Bug at almost 4 months old.

Button at almost 3 months old.

Project: Simplify - Hot Spot #2

Project: Simplify's Hot Spot #2 was paper clutter. It was everywhere in my house.  The laundry room, the basement, the kitchen table... we tackled them all, but the worse offender was the kitchen counter.  We were both at fault.  We had "his" and "hers" paper piles, which typically included keys, remote controls, spare change, sunglasses, phone chargers, batteries, and random tools.  These kitchen piles have been my arch nemesis lately, mostly because we just recently did a very mini-remodel of the kitchen by installing an Ikea cupboard, re-positioning our island against the wall, and clearing the counter top near the stove (for the most part).  It gives the kitchen a much more open and clean feeling.  It was all out of necessity since Bug's latest obsession with getting up in the morning and getting into anything he could reach on the counter.  Namely the sugar bowl (breakfast of champions!) and Big Daddy's dangerous oh-so-fun tools.  Honesty, I can't believe we didn't do sooner.  It's a wonderful change.

But I digress... the piles.  After all that the piles remained.  We attacked them this week and we put up a hanging wall organizer.  It has a key rack and a separate slots for my stuff and his as well as a third slot we'll use for outgoing mail.  I can't remember the last time my counter top was this clear.  I'm so excited to have space for cooking!  It took me longer than a week to make it happen.  Things I have a mind to do around here will get done, but not necessarily within a set time frame. I'm so hopeful we can make this one last.  I am LOVING a clean counter top!!!!



Button ~ Three Months Old

She is:
marveling at her hands, talking, sucking on her fists, and on the verge of laughing out loud.

She loves:
her brother, sitting up propped, bath time, watching basketball with Daddy, and snoozing on any available chest.

She dislikes:
laying down when she's awake, when mom is making dinner, and sunlight... my little vampire! 

Owl Calendar by Gingiber

I Live for Saturdays

I look forward to Saturday all week.  It's the day when I can sleep in (until 7:30 today!), snuggle with the kids, take it slow.  Saturdays have all the promise of an unscheduled day without the anticipation of the work week that Sunday brings.  Here's how ours began today.

In addition to this snuggle-fest we have already:
* had cheesecake for breakfast
* had a screaming, laughing pillow fight in the kitchen
* read stories
* and watched Button "swim" through tummy time

Turns out Button didn't have an ear infection after all.  I was so convinced that was it, but the symptoms stopped the next morning and ear infections don't just go away.  Instead, I think we've entered "the teething zone."  I admit, I'm not ready for it.  Not because of the actual teething part, but the part that means my baby girl is growing so fast.  She turned 3 months old this week.  Three months!  I'll post her monthly photos soon.  I kind of went nuts (I have that tendency) and took about 250 shots.  The hard part is choosing just a few of my favorites.

I hope you have a great Saturday.  I'm off to play Batman now.


Poor baby.

My final Joy of Luck photo is on hold for a day.  I think Button has an ear infection. She's typically a very happy baby, but she hasn't been herself since yesterday.  I was laying in relaxation pose (not relaxing) at yoga and it hit me: she's holding her fist by her ear, uncharacteristically fussy particularly while nursing, and she just got over an awful cold.  Big Daddy had a hard time with her while I was away.  I'm making an appointment first thing in the morning.


Joy of Luck Photo Class - Days One to Six

I did part of Willette's Joy of Love online photography class in February and have also been following the March Joy of Luck class.  Joy of Luck is a shorter project and I find it easier to complete than the Joy of Love, mostly because Joy of Love required more shots of the husband as it progressed and he majorly frowns upon my posting of his photo on the web...

That said, here are my photos for days one through six of Joy of Luck... starting with a shot of the hubby.  Oopsies.

Day One - Gift.  Photograph something that defines a gift in your life.

My husband is an amazing gift.  He moved across country for me.
He's my best friend. I love sharing this life with him.
(I cheat.  This photo was taken in 2008.)

Day Two - Green.

Tulips started popping up in the backyard this week.  
I love a shot of color after so many months of gray and brown.

Day Three - Lucky Symbols.

A horse shoe. It was Muddy's, my horse of nearly 10 years.  He's gone, but not forgotten.

Day Four - Seven Favorite Things.  I could do the obvious things like my home, my vehicle, my camera and my cell phone, but the following all have sentimental meaning or are special to me in their own way.  In no particular order:

#1 - A hydrangea I've had since my grandmother's funeral in 2000.
It has traveled from Michigan to the East Coast and has survived three re-plantings.

#2 - My journals for the kids.  I started journaling when Bug was a week old and did so weekly through his first year.  Then I kept up with it (roughly) monthly until Button arrived.  Now I'm back to weekly writing.
They are precious to me and I can't wait to share them with the kids one day.

#3 - My chimes.  They hang below our bedroom window.
I love the sound they make.

#4 - My grandma's colander.  I use it almost every day.
I have beautiful memories of picking beans, strawberries, raspberries, and currants from her garden and rinsing them in this colander.  Then she'd make pies.

#5 - Bird Girl
She lives in our garden (with Momma Kitty!)  I just love her.

#6 - Our fountain. Very Zen-like. Beautiful sound.
(I cheat again. Thing photo was from last summer.)

#7 - A boat my grandfather made.  It lives in Bug's room.
It sat in their basement for years and I never knew it existed until their estate sale.
It was already entered in the sale when I first saw it.  I paid $90.

Days Five and Six - What Brings Luck and My Biggest Blessing (two in one photo).

For me, the moment I became a mother was my luckiest, most blessed moment.  It changed me and awakened me in so many ways.  This photo was taken by Big Daddy in October.

One more posting to come for Joy of Luck! Tomorrow is the final day of the class. 


Baby Goats

Our friends have the coolest farm.  Horses, Harry the mule, cats, dogs, chickens and goats.  They used to have Phoebe the cow and ducks, too!  One of the goats had kids last week.  Two adorable, soft, playful baby goats. I don't know if any baby animal is cuter.  Except maybe this guy... 

And the baby goat sleepy pile... I'm sunk!  Have you ever seen a pile of baby goats sleeping?  They truly do just climb on top of one another.  It's all legs and ears.  Last year there were five babies on the farm.  These are the first two of this year.  They are unofficially named Dotty and Noodle. We love them.



There are a million and one things, moments, and memories that make me happy and would warrant this title, but lately nothing more so than the sound of this voice and seeing this smile.  Yes, we're rockin' the St. Patty's onesie, but I swear she's only worn it a day.  It was Bug's and I found it ~after~ the holiday.  Doh.

Happy Spring


A Child Behind the Lens

I let Bug use my point and shoot back when I was on maternity leave.  This is what he captured (unedited by mom).  Not bad for a three year old!  I might have to get him his own Nikon one day.



I read somewhere recently that children of Bug's age (three-ish) tend to become obsessed with superheros and superpowers.  It's an age at which they're cognizant of the ability to do just about anything they want to, but they usually lack the height, strength, and/or speed to do many of them.  To compensate, they develop "super powers".  Bug is definitely a superhero lately.  When he does things, it's always with his "super strong powers."  I love it.  And I love encouraging him to be a superhero.  If I can build him up in a way that doesn't involve a sugary snack, I'm all for it!

We have a fitted sheet that bit the dust.  What better way to recycle than to create a super cool, super stylish, superhero cape?!  He is so proud.  Someday he'll grow out of this phase.  I just hope it's not too soon.


Button ~ Two Months Old

She's actually three months old in a week, but I'm just getting around to editing these photos.  I'm doing two different by-the-month ideas with Button to document her first year: the "baby on the calendar" idea from Under the Sycamore and an idea I had to do after finding the cutest calendar ever on Etsy.  Here she is in all her delicious two month old glory!

These were her one month old photos.

A few with brother.

Photo shoots are tiring.