My Best Friends' Kids

It was a first of hopefully MANY visits last weekend with my BFFs... together at the same time... with children.  (Big Smile!)  Kim, Lindsey and I have been friends since we were eleven years old.  22 years!!  We went to middle school, high school, AND college together where I lived with Lindsey the entire four years.  There is so much history between us that I sincerely consider each of them family and love them as my own sisters.  We've shared every milestone in life with each other - the awkwardness of preteen life (the bangs! the cheesy music!), the trials of high school, the learning curve of new-found independence, relationships, growing pains, mischievous deeds, the loss of loved ones, and as we aged, the wisdom of self-discovery. I was in each of their weddings and both of them in mine. I can't begin to describe how much they both mean to me.  And by some wonderful, random, awesome stroke of luck, we all now live within two hours of each on the East Coast.  It was so awesome to gather with our own little ones for the first time. We are so lucky!

 The Wee Ones!

 Hanging out.

 The girls in brown.

The mommas with our "next generation" of girls.


Lost in Her

Her warm, squishy body wraps around my stomach.  Her weight warms my lap, so nice on a chilly day.  She smells like strawberries and cotton candy.  Her hair is wild; somewhere between short and long-ish and twisting in each and every direction.  Her toes are damp.  She lays a sometimes sticky little hand on my chest, often bending her wrist into the crook of my neck or beneath my chin.  Her eyes light up and search mine, asking with them, "may I be playful or should we get down to business?"  If it's a playful time, she will tickle my face with her "goya, goya, goya" sound, her eyes smiling as much as her mouth.  If it's all business, she gets right to it and her eyes close in the glow of love and relaxation. Her body lies still and soft.

 A snuggle session at Winterthur Gardens in September.
She knows her job and has done it like a pro since day one.  I nurse her in what are often the only peaceful moments of my day and they are getting fewer and farther between.  However, she is showing no signs yet of giving it up and I'm okay with that.  I'm sometimes asked "you still breastfeed after she turned a year old?"  If she's like her brother, we'll hopefully both be ready to wean at the same time.  He was just over two years old.  It was right around Christmas.  I was ready and so was he.  It just happened naturally.  No tears. No upset.  The World Health Organization recommends breastfeeding for the first two years of life, not only for the nutrition of the child, but also for the improved health of the mother (reduces the risk of ovarian breast cancers.)  I gather not many women follow that recommendation based on comments I get, but I don't let them under my skin.  I know I'm doing what's right for me and my child and every mother must make that choice for her own family.

My days have a wild pace - maintaining the balance and harmony of work, home, family, and social life, but those few moments in my day when she's in my lap... that is all that matters.  And that's a very beautiful thing.


InstaFriday... on Monday

Whoopsies!  Busy weekend...  Here's a snippet of our week as viewed through my iPhone.  We celebrated so many things!  A clean bill of health from the dentist, Valentine's Day, a visit from a friend, and the birth of my NEW NEPHEW!! Woo hoo!! 

 You think they'd give me some shades the next time I go in for a cleaning 
or is it just a special perk for kids?
 I worked last weekend and handled hospitality for our event.  
It's always nice to do event planning around a holiday.
Kisses and hearts!

 Our neighbor brings us treats.  She is Awesome.
 Boy's already having college girls come visit him.  We're in trouble!
This is the sweetheart who adores Bug and gave him the puppy he's been holding since the day she left for college.  She came over and made him Mac N Cheese.  
No wonder he loves her...
The newest member of the family.  
Congratulations to my sister and her husband on their firstborn.
I'll have to think up a cute nickname for him for the blog.  ;-)
Welcome, darling boy.  We love you forever.

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New Shelves

This doesn't even touch on all of the awesome honey-do and home improvement projects my husband has been up to lately, but I had to show how great these shelves look that he put up, especially all decked out for Valentine's Day!

This one is over the buffet in our dining room.  I should have pulled back, so you can see the whole wall.  The wood is old barn wood that he cut to size and mounted using racks from Home Depot. Aren't the Valentine's cute?  They're handmade from my friend and her daughter last year.  Love them!  The subway art is a free download on eighteen25.  They have one for every holiday.

This is more of the same wood mounted in our living room.  I've hated the look of this wall for so long and now I LOVE it!!  I was really nervous, though.  The wood beam is SO HEAVY, I honestly thought it would pull the wall right off the... wall.  He did such a great job.  I'm going to have so much fun decorating them for each holiday!  YAY!

Happy Valentine's Day!


A Bit of This, A Bit of That

Today on the way to work, Bug was asking about the heart, something he's been very interested in lately.  He says to me "people eat food and the heart squishes it up and the food goes into the blood and keeps the body healthy."  Gaaaahhh!  So cute!  It was even cuter because of the way he says healthy - "helfy."  Today, I ordered this book so we can talk all about the circulatory system together.  I'm so excited! I love science!  We're also getting this book and this book, too, because he's always asking questions about the Earth, but especially about volcanoes.

On Saturday, Bug said his sister's name correctly.  Since her birth, he's mispronounced it, and he said it correctly multiple times and it brought tears to my eyes.  I love the way he's always said her name. :(

We had our first emergency room visit while we were in Michigan.  Bug was playing in the hotel room (monkeys on beds!) and he hurt his arm.  He was okay for a while (dinner, swimming at the pool), but later in the night, he wouldn't stop whimpering.  We left for the hospital at 12:30 and were home by 2:30am.  They were great there.  They did three scans, but couldn't tell if there was an issue in the growth plate, so they put him in a temporary cast.  He was a champ!  This Wednesday, the cast came off and our pediatrician checked him out again.  There was no pain, so he's all clear!  Better safe than sorry.

Chilling at the E.R.

The temporary cast.  
Since dad wasn't on this trip, I asked Bug to make a "tough face" to send a photo to him.  
He couldn't do it without laughing.

Button's bedtime routine for quite some time has included a tickle section.  She tickles me on my face.  I recorded it tonight.  Don't adjust your screen.  It's all black.  I was just recording the sound.  "goya, goya, goya, goya..."



I was upstairs putting Button to sleep.  Their dad was at a neighbor's house helping with a broken pipe.  I was away from Bug for about 20 minutes.  He usually finds something quiet to do when I put his sister to bed.  This time, I came downstairs to find him all decked out in his chef's outfit and playing with his kitchen set.  I was blown away by the cuteness of it all.

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