Monday, November 26, 2012

Monday(n) Thoughts

"The cyberest of cyber Mondays" is not $15 off an order of $75, Urban Outfitters.  That's the scammiest of cyber Mondays because we're still forced to pay $50 to get a deal.  Then again, your catalogs are creepy.  So, I'm over you.

Alice is in her room "sleeping."  Today "sleeping" sounds like this, "Ayesh, ah-no-no-no, MMMMMM, Mama-mom, whoa! wha! wha!, ah-bd-bd-bd-bd, bawsh? bawsh?, aaaw, ah-no-no-no-no."

Day 13 of Project Cure Sinus Infection (it was a top-secret FBI project that is now open to the public's knowledge) is in progress, and I'm feeling like I can do things.  Just a few days ago I thought that the land of the living had passed me by, and I would be forever bound to a couch, forced to watch happiness from afar.  But here I am.  Back in the land where dishes can be washed, babies can be cared for, beds can be made, floors can be swept.  I forgot how exhilarating the land of the living can be.

Some might think the Christmas season is here, but in this house we're holding out for advent.  This means that, come yon Saturday, our house will be filled with grand reminders that 'tis the season.  ...even though advent is not a festive time, and really a time of contemplation.  We're not making much sense.  But we live in a culture that doesn't make sense.  So.  There's that.

Alice would like you to know, "Ah-no-no-no-no."

Alice would also like you to know that we will find out the sex of our baby this week!  What do you think it is?  Your options are: a boy or a girl.

Let's all take a moment of pause to appreciate grammar.  Let's all think about the statement, "Well, u new what I ment to say so y does splling matter...................?????"
That's what cave men used to say. Well, at least, that's what they used to grunt.

Thus concludes the thoughts from my head.  Merry Christmas.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Updates on our lives, questions for your life.

What's goin' down in the Roberts' home?  So much.  Are you even ready for this?  Fasten your seat belts.

- Alice has a cold.  :(  She drank out of a snotty-nosed kid's sippy cup on Tuesday, and by Thursday morning had snot running down her poor face.  Would you like to wake up with snot running down your face?

- This was Alice's morning yesterday after breakfast: epsom salt bath, coconut oil massage, comfy clothes, blanket snuggles, warm milk, tucked into the crib for her nap.  Does this sound at all amazing to you?

- I saw my midwife on Wednesday and heard the baby's sweet, quick little heartbeat!  Alice said "whoa" when she heard it.  You would be surprised how popular Alice was in that office.  I felt like I was toting around a little famous person with all the stops we had to make to talk about Alice's age, her cuteness, her smirk, and her cuteness... and her cuteness.  I have no problem with such stops.  Are you as famous as Alice?

- Though I'm 16 weeks along, I'm still a big tired-head, which makes for an untidy house and a general feeling of light chaos.  Hopefully the fountain of blood the doctor took out of me will tell us why I've been tired, and some magic supplement of some sort will give me the boost I'd so love to have.  Do you love getting your blood drawn?

-  I am so glad the election is over!  ...I could say more.  Do you wish you could stand in line to vote again?

- I will always vote the same as my husband votes -- if we as a couple should always be on the same page as one another and value the same principles, we can't see a reason why voting should be an exception.  But I've found that not all couples do this... what do you do and why?

- Alice, being the needy baby she was yesterday (and still is today), just wanted to be held.  So we sat down and watched Mary Poppins together.  Little Alice isn't much of a cuddler (such a busy baby), but when she's sick, that changes.  It was the sweetest and the best (see cuddle photos above).  How do you feel about baby snuggles?  How do you feel about classy nannies who are magical and sing like angels?

This has been the Roberts' family update.  What a wild ride.

Monday, November 5, 2012

It's breakin' my heart, baby!

That's my sweetheart.  She is the most precious sweetie in the world.  And she would never do anything wrong, right?  I.wish.

Alice has developed a new habit: dropping food off her tray.  She drops food off her tray with great intention, grabbing a piece of cheese in her fist, stretching out her arm past the little tray, opening that hand, and letting the cheese faaaall to the floor.  One piece after the other.  We have worked on this food-wasting, disobedient habit, but not much has come of it. I'll sit with her as she stretches out her arm, about to do the dirty deed, and take her wrist, saying "No," then bring her hand back to the tray.  There came a day when I could see it in her eyes -- something clicked.  I said, "No," and Alice stared at me, then shook her head.  "That's right, no-no.  Don't drop your food, Alice.  Keep it here, on your tray."

Since this recognition of "no," Alice has decided to test the power of this word.  Does mom really mean it? She repeats the food-dropping ritual, and I repeat the "no" ritual -- and it has become just that: a ritual!  I knew the day would come and I was dreading it... today happened to be the day that "no" was not enough.

Alice had a tray full of sweet potato chunks smothered in coconut oil.  After a few bites, she decided that dropping them would be more fun.  The ritual ensued and I took her wrist, put it back to the tray, told her no, and offered up the food to her lips.  She shook her head.  Then she eyed me with those knowing eyes, reached out her arm, I gave a "No, Alice," and just as she opened her hand to let that little potato drop, I hit her hand.  It was really more of a firm tap, but it was enough to send the message.  She looked confused and brought her hand up and looked at it, then looked at me.  She didn't look sad, but her eyes were watery -- she was one confused baby and I was one crushed mommy.  Before my heart burst into a million pieces, I brought her face to my lips, kissed her forehead, and said, "I love you."  I took another piece of sweet potato and asked if she was all done.  Her confusion disappeared and she ate the potato, then signed that she was all done.

It was only a few seconds of a first and most mild discipline, and it took seconds for Alice to move on.  She got the picture, didn't drop her food, and was done.  But, my goodness, talk about the worst.

I know that enforcing our words and protecting Alice is one of the most profound ways to show Alice we love her, but that doesn't make it any easier.  Seeing her obey her parents in the Lord will be the greatest reward.

Love you, babsies!  Quit dropping your food, mmkay?

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Alice is a super hero(-ine)!

As I sat Alice on the floor of her room tonight, surrounded by many books and a few scattered toys, I wondered how many times I'd be able to blink before she dove into playing while I collected and put away her things.  Like every day, Alice had made sure to play the part of a small tornado during her "room time," leaving me to make it like new before putting her to bed.  But the little baby surprised me.

I picked up her books, stacking them in front of me, narrating to her as I went.  "And then we take the books from all around and we put them in a pile and we rest them on the shelf." She watched intently.  Her eyes went from the books, to my hands, to the shelf.  I had almost gotten all of the books when Alice began looking on either side of her -- her eyes landed on a toy.  It was a big toy, too heavy for her to carry, but she tried very hard to pick it up.  I assumed she wanted to play with it, but pretended she had intentions of cleaning and said, "Thank you!" as I put it away.  Her chubby face held its thoughtful expression, and she looked around some more. This time, her eyes landed on her socks that she had yanked off earlier.  With her two tiny hands, she fisted the socks up, leaned forward, and dropped them in my hands.  I suppose my heart has become far too melatable because, in that instant, it turned to mush.  First, I was amazed that her little one-year-old mind could catch on so quickly.  Second, I couldn't get over how sweet her desires were to be a part of whatever it was mommy was doing.

After I said "thank you" more times than necessary, with more enthusiasm than necessary, we called Daddy in and showed him Alice's new skill.  Then we all clapped (Alice, too, of course) and smiled soooo big and said "yaaaay" for soooo long.  Everyday is a party in one-year-old land!  It's a good land.

Monday, September 24, 2012

When you're growing a human.

You might be wondering why I'm not writing something that features Alice's first birthday, or the fact that I'm about 9 weeks pregnant.  Yes, 9 weeks!  The answer to my blogging hiatus is just that: I'm pregnant.  And with my pregnancies thus far, there comes a certain, debilitating, fall-over-dead kind of exhaustion.

I've also contracted a cold -- and so has Alice -- from taking care of sweet lil germ-infested kids in a nursery that I've been helping in once a week (they can't help it).

Do you know that it feels pretty rockin' to be lying down, sleeping, trying to sleep, or wishing you could sleep, while your house is quite disorderly?  Well, it does.  What makes me feel even more rockin' is that, aside from my cold, my main complaint is "I'm tired."  I'm not puking my guts up like most pregnant women, nor am I experiencing back pains or something else that sounds more legitimate than, "Eeeeeh, I'm tired."  But you know what?  It takes it out of me to take a shower.  It's everything I can do to get dressed in the morning.  This is the epitome of power.

My standards of quality have come to such great heights in the past 9 weeks, that I feel very accomplished after putting the wet laundry into the dryer.  I feel an audience surrounding me in applause when I make the bed.  And I feel like roses should fall from the sky when I wash the dishes (without a dishwasher).  Something that all of these tasks have in common is bear bones necessity.  These are not weekly chores like dusting... these are things people must do in order to not revert back to a caveman mentality.  So all I do is keep up.  There are some days I feel super productive, and I look around to see that Alice's cloth diapers have been cleaned, the dishes are done, and the bed is unmade, there are toys everywhere, dinner hasn't crossed my mind, and the tablecloth still hasn't been yanked off the table and washed.  Yet I feel like a superhero for doing the bloody dishes.  Duh.

So there it is.  Pickle and I, just keepin' it real.  I've really got it together over here.  I'm kind of keeping sane, our house hasn't caved in, and Alice is happy.  Big pat on the back for this neat lady.  I'm a role model for all of mankind, what can I say?  Ya know.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Alice and I have a chat

Alice is sitting on my lap, having just nursed.

"Alice," I ask, "do you want some more?"  She looks at me for a few seconds, clearly in thought, then shakes her head "no."  Doubtful that her head-shake is anything but a coincidence, I ask, "Okay, are you all done?"  Alice smiles and confirms her head-shake by waving her hand in the motion that means "all done."  "Okay!  Do you want to go nigh-nigh now, or do you want to get down and play?"  She gives a little jerk of excitement and says, "DAH!" while turning away, ready to get down.

And that was the longest conversation I've had with Alice.

P.S.  For those of you wondering why I bothered to ask if she'd rather go to bed or play, it's not uncommon for her choice to be "nigh-nigh." :)

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Alice and Pants

The other night I dressed Alice for bed.  She wore a little t-shirt and some gray, polka-dot pants.  We did our nighttime routine (nurse, book, prayer, crib), I said goodnight, and left the room.

This was one of those nights that she cried and whined for 30 minutes straight, so I headed in to rock her and opened her door.  I wish I had a picture -- our little 11-month-old was standing in her crib, wearing a t-shirt and diaper.  That's it!  Not only had she removed her pants, but she had tossed them out of the crib and onto the floor. She has never undressed herself and, quite frankly, I don't know any 11-month-old who has.

If only we had recorded her craziness... I would have loved to see how she managed to yank those pants off with her tiny baby hands.  I would also like to know why an 11-month-old would decide against pants, but I don't count on ever knowing that.  We can, however, trust that Alice Clementine did not want to wear pants that night.

And I love her for that.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Charlie and the Dome Home

        There was once a little mouse named Charlie.  He lived on what he thought must be a farm, and a kind old man, called Master, took care of Charlie and his many mouse friends.  Charlie loved playing games with his mouse friends, eating cheese and crusty bread from Master, and sleeping in his snuggly pile of cotton and feathers. 

It was a bright, sunny day, and Charlie was playing hide-n-seek with his friends.  He was very tired and perhaps a little dizzy, but he figured this must be to his advantage in being patient enough to stay in his hiding spot for a very long time.  Just as he began to doze off, he startled awake -- why, he was floating in the air!  Master was picking him up and, before he knew it, Charlie was placed in a tiny, clear dome.  Master gave Charlie a crumb of cheese and closed the door.  Charlie was terrified.  Why would Master do this?  “Come back!” he cried.  “I want to play with my friends! Let me out!”  Charlie scurried round and round the dome, pounding his pink mousey paws against the clear plastic, but his new little home wouldn’t budge.

Day after day Charlie squeaked and squealed, screamed and fussed, pounded and pounded.  This morning, like every morning, Master dropped a crumb of cheese through the little door of his dome.  Charlie scurried over and devoured the cheese.  He almost swallowed it whole, he was so hungry from his screaming and running.  Charlie looked out the dome toward his master and scowled the fiercest scowl he could muster.  “It’s not enough!” he yelled.  “It’s not enough and you know it!  I’m so hungry, please give me more.  Please!”  Master did not give him more.  Another day of being hungry, and Charlie was furious.  He began his regular routine of running and pounding, but with more ferocity than ever.
       Charlie was tired.  My, he was as tired as a mouse could be.  His tummy rumbled and groaned.  He licked at some of the dew on the grass beneath him.  He did not feel so well, but he knew that with more food, everything would be better.  That’s all he needed.  “Why would Master treat me this way?” he asked himself.  “I thought he was kind.”  Charlie looked longingly out of his dome.  He could see his mouse friends playing and eating -- oh, how they were eating!  They seemed to have more food than Charlie ever had when he lived outside of his dome.  Charlie began to cry.

Charlie cried and cried.  When he opened his eyes, it was morning.  The master had already left him his cheese.  Tired Charlie crawled over and began to nibble.  It tasted nutty and it felt good in his empty belly.  It felt so good that Charlie went back to sleep.  When he awoke, it was already the next day.  Charlie looked over and, just as he expected, saw a piece of cheese.  He took it and ate it. He felt better.  He looked out of his dome and a small grin came on his face.  How happy his friends looked.  Charlie was not so tired today.
As the days went by, Charlie began to feel happy and not so tired.  And Charlie learned that if he ate his cheese, and did not spend all of his time pounding on his dome, complaining and wailing, the crumb of cheese was just enough to fill his tummy.

It was the afternoon, and Charlie was gazing out of his dome as he often did, when he heard a familiar noise.  It was the door to his dome opening.  “More cheese?” he thought excitedly.  Charlie felt a hand scoop him up, out of his dome, and onto the grass outside.

      Charlie gasped.  The new grass against his paws, Charlie scampered over to his friends.  “Charlie!” they cried.  “We missed you! Do you feel better?”  Charlie was confused, “What do you mean?” he asked with furrowed mouse-brows.  “The dome!” piped up one of his friends.  “Master put you in the dome because you were very sick.  He didn’t want us to get sick either, so he put you in the little dome where you could watch us and get better.”  Charlie couldn’t believe it -- he had been sick, and Master was just taking care of him.  How kind Master was!  Charlie smiled and ran off with his friends to play hide-n-seek.  This time, he wasn’t tired at all.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Tuesday at Home

While Thomas the Train is going and Alice is happy exploring her car seat that is in the living room instead of the car (oooo!), I thought I'd share how eventful my day has been.  Let me tell you, taking pictures of little things throughout the day has already enhanced my sanity.  Something to break up the day and mark different points of the day as "highlights" is a breath of fresh air when I feel like my life at home is a seamless line of blurred meaninglessness (I know it's not meaningless... but it can feel that way, so sue me).

I sipped on some apple cider vinegar.  You should read about it.

You might also like to know that my constant summer treat has been frozen bananas.  I keep them in the freezer and often douse them with loads of melted dark chocolate/butter when I need a pick-me-up.

I don't care if it looks gross.  It is amazing.  Try it -- there's no turning back.

After successfully getting Alice to sleep, I sat down with Pinterest and planned out a few Christmas gift ideas.  It's never too early.  Ever.

And Alice continues to play in her car seat... I don't know why it is such a wonderful toy when it is in a new setting.  I'm glad she's having the time of her life.

So far my day sounds quite pleasant -- I didn't realize how pleasant until I wrote it out.  Magic!  Also, I did wash dishes and do other not-awesome things, but everyday requires not-awesome things in order to be successful.

On another note, Alice/I really need some more rhyming books.  As much as I love saying, "Tick tock, tick tock, that's the sound of baby's clock," multiple times a day, I'm starting to dread Alice's book-reading desires.  She adores books, but only enjoys the rhyming ones so far.  But she is so happy with her small selection.  Way to be, Alice.

P.S.  This is cute.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Circumstances, you don't own me.

If you know me, you probably know that -- due to circumstances outside of our control -- we do not have a second car.  Some woman, driving 100mph through our neighborhood with a blindfold on, destroyed the back half of my husband's car.  His car needed a new battery and the air conditioning felt like a hair dryer, but it worked.  Now it doesn't.  Not at all.  The woman never responded to the insurance company's calls, so we're out a car.  That's how life works.

Some people ask, why don't you get it fixed?  Others ask, why don't you just get a cheap car to temporarily replace it -- ya know, like $1,000?  If I'm going to be polite I say, "We can't afford that right now."  If I'm going to be honest, I wring their necks and say, "WHY DO YOU THINK THE AVERAGE AMERICAN HAS $1,000 JUST SITTING IN THEIR BANK ACCOUNT??  WHO DO YOU THINK WE ARE??"  I haven't had the nerve to be honest yet.

Let's cut to the chase.  I have always been a home body.  Recently, this has changed.  I have found myself stressed upon waking up in the morning, just because I know I couldn't leave our little house if I wanted to.  I've found myself blaming problems like, "Man, I wish I could eat all the Ben and Jerry's ice cream I want," on not having a car.  Blast you, lack of car, you've kept me from an endless supply of ice cream.  This is obviously a very reasonable reaction, however, I've decided that it's time for a change in attitude.  It is time for me to wake up in the morning and say, "You're trapped, kid.  Enjoy it.  Find something awesome to do." It is time for me to not be ashamed to Instagram yet another event that is happening inside our home.  And by "event," I mean eating lunch or staring at Alice play.  (For the record, I don't just stare at her while she plays.  I'm usually gritting my teeth, trying to bear her cuteness, while also singing children's songs or babbling like an 11-month-old)

Now let's really cut to the chase.  I am going to blog about being at home.  It's for real, people.  My life is a life that lives inside of a 900sq.ft. home, and we're just going to embrace it.  I will tell you when I'm going crazy (I'm going crazy) and I will also tell you when I'm working on any kind of project... even if it's folding clothes.  Prepare to be blown away by the mundane.

A salt grinder and my Martha Stewart calendar/organizer/amazing thing.  The salt grinder belongs in the kitchen, and has been bugging me that it has gotten away with staying on the table all morning and afternoon. The Martha Stewart calendar often seems pointless because, what exactly am I planning out?  But when I do have something to plan... watch out, world.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Climb Every Mountain (baby Alice style)

My parents have stairs in their house.  Yesterday we hung out with those stairs, when Alice and I were over to help my mom with her cookie business.  At first Alice was needy and confused, since my attention for her was divided between cookies and baby.  Soon, though, she become comfortable enough to explore the grounds, and was crawling everywhere.  She had been patting around for awhile, when we looked up to see this:

She was climbing the stairs and had absolutely no fear!  I stood behind her and let her climb, just to see how far she could get.  She got to the landing and was ready to round the corner to the second set of stairs... sadly, for Alice, the second set did not get to be climbed (due to a mother's fear and not to a baby's).

Today Alice is pulling up on everything.  I suppose the stairs inspired her.  I am so grateful we don't have stairs, or my job would be a lot harder now!

I love this little crazy baby.
"I came, I saw, I conquered."  -Baby Alice

Thursday, July 19, 2012

How we met: Part 1

Jenny and I on campus

No, not how I met Jenny.  I've decided to begin a series on my life, starting with how Caleb and I met.  They might not be short posts (yeah, probably not), so if you don't have the patience to read someone else's lovey dovey story, I guess I'll understand.  But you should probably read it, 'cause we're adorable.  

When I was in high school I was genuinely scared of guys.  Not scared of the male sex, but guys of the high school variety.  These guys stared, they could say awkward things at any given second, and they laughed at anything you said.  I strove to overcome my fear and perhaps be forgiving of the hormones that surrounded me (male and female alike... not to mention my own), but it was quite a tiring effort.  Since I was brought into this very world, I dreamed of being a wife and mom with hundreds of children.  I did not want to mess around with this dream and end up with some weirdo.  But at this point, boys were weird, boys were scary.  Why do we even mess with guy-girl relationships of any kind in high school?  A question I cannot answer now and certainly could not answer then.  I went through high school without a twitch of attraction to anyone, and I was proud of it.  I sound like a snot (and I probably was), but I honestly couldn't figure out why these girls were dating such confusing people.  By my senior year, I had somewhat learned how to communicate with guys without wanting to walk away and/or cry.  

All that to say, I went off to college with a healthy fear of guys.  The college guys were quite similar to the high school ones, except they had learned to exude confidence and many of them had learned how to be more forward.  All of us had made it out of high school, and now our hormones weren't surrounding us like a sparkling cloud of smoke.  In some ways, there was more reason to be scared.  But I was a big girl, and I made myself speak to the boy-guy-man-dudes, and even found myself friends with a few (...because guys and girls can be friends... no).

One summer day in August - the start of my sophomore year - the sister, Jenny, and I headed to a local coffee shop to play Mancala and sip iced coffee while we got excited about another year of classes (I was actually only excited about new notebooks and fresh pencils).  As we laughed, talked, and made fun of each other's Mancala moves, a young man walked up to the counter near us and ordered a drink.  He was glancing over at us -- a normal college behavior.  We continued playing.  In my peripheral, I saw a blue shirt approaching us -- the same young man at the counter arrived at our table, and asked, "Are you all Stewart's sisters?"  He had a friendly voice.  We told him "yes," and asked how he knew our brother.  We started to talk, when something very strange happened.  I found myself pulling my purse off of the third seat at our table, and asked him to sit down.  It was highly out of character, but this guy was so nice.  He might have been cute, but I wasn't about to rush such a crazy notion.  But his voice was deep.  And he made eye contact.  He made eye contact using brown eyes.  He didn't interrupt us.  He didn't even lean in and act like he had some kind of creepy expectations.  He talked without the slightest bit of secret intention.  As we talked, we learned that his name was Caleb, this was his first year, and that he thought the freshman orientation class he was participating in was pointless and weird.  When people think things are pointless, my ears perk up.  It means they think, they have an opinion, and they call it like it is.  This guy thought something was pointless... that's awesome. Caleb was at the coffee shop in order to meet a guy-dude-man named Sean (spoiler alert! Sean would later be a groomsman in Caleb's wedding... but who would Caleb marry??).  We happened to know Sean as well, and soon found out that we had many mutual friends, had both home-schooled, and had even attended the same church when we were young.  We were off to a terrible start in getting to know one another.

Lie.  It was a dreamy start.

To be continued.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Pretty Hair: for you or your little one

As you might have read from my last post, my sister-in-law and sweet nieces are in town.  Last week I was playing with Lydia's hair (she says she loves her hair to be played with... a girl after my own heart).  Here's how one little hair-do came out and it looks so sweet on her little head!

The twist could have stood to be a little tighter, but little girls don't always stand still.  If my hair were longer, I would try it out in a heartbeat (and if Alice's hair were longer... haha).
Here's how you do it (in case you haven't figured it out):
- starting on one side of your head, take a piece of hair next to your ear, and twist slightly
- take the next lock of hair (behind the piece you just twisted) and adjoin by twisting it gently into your already twisted lock
- take another lock of hair (just as you did in the previous step) and twist together, making your way across your head
- when you get the end, curve/twirl/roll into a bun and secure with bobby pins

It didn't take too much jumping, skipping, and monkey-dancing before Lydia's hair fell out, so maybe a few more bobby pins (and hairspray?) would have helped.  She has lovely wavy hair, too, so I'm sure that helps in keeping it in place.

Did you know that every other year I decide I MUST grow my hair out?  This is that year.  I had a dream that I grew it out, and in that dream I felt so feminine.  After I grow it out, I'll start hating it and I'll cut it off.  This is the way of life.

And, since you missed out on Lyd's cute face, here you go:

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Alice Writes Again: 10 Months Old

Good morning!  I'm 10 months old this month, and I'm here to share all of my baby secrets, as well as way too many photos of myself.

To start, I like a lot of things.  In fact, I like most things since, after all, I am a baby.

                                                      I like cheese. Yes, even blue cheese.

I like crazy smiles.

I like making up new words whenever I'm not too tired.

I love reading books, having them read to me, and tearing pages.

Mama's jewelry makes the best toy, hands down.

I'm love observing and thinking about all kinds of things.

I also love songs.  When people laugh, I think it's funny.  When babies cry, I think that's funny, too.  I like waving when there is a silent moment to fill.  When I wake up from my nap, I like to pull myself up and either say, "Dadadadada" or "Mamamama" or I just cry.  

Now, some things I don't like are when I'm crawling around and I find a little treasure and mom takes it away.  It tastes so good, I feel so great about finding something special, and she just takes it.  I don't really understand that, but mom says that someday when I'm not a baby I'll understand.  When it comes down to it, there's a whole lot that I DO understand, so it's okay to be confused about one thing.  I do not like people holding my hand... never have, never will.  Getting into my car seat is also pretty terrible, but once I'm all buckled in, it's a great ride.  

 I'm gonna hand it over to my mom from here.  Thanks for reading and looking at all of my pictures!

Here are some things Alice is saying/trying to say:
Saying: Mama, Dada
Trying to say: Hi (sounds like "I"), more (sounds like "bo"), no (sounds like oooh), Moo (like the cow -- sounds like a humming "mmmm"), all done (sounds like aaaah daaaah)

I feel like every day there is a new side of Alice that shines through -- it is so much fun getting to know her and getting to kiss her all.the.time.  Some days are hard, but most days that she crawls by my feet or I hear her squeal from another room, I am reminded of my many days of longing for such constant baby-companionship.   She's with me ALL DAY LONG!! I never have to say good bye, and why would I want to?  Keep being adorable, sweet babes! 

It's so impossibly hard to believe that 1 year old is two short months away! 

Friday, July 13, 2012

Alice Learns to Read

Alice has been crawling everywhere.  Currently, the crawling and getting into things is still adorable and hasn't reached the "when will this end" stage.  Here's what she found today.

Books and a bookmark from mom and dad's bookshelf... so much better than her own bookshelf.

P.S.  Alice will be posting her 10-month-old update soon!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Alice continues to be cute (and family comes to town)

I'm here, I'm alive, it's been awhile.

This past week was quite the refresher, since sister Jenny and her hubby Eric came in from Virginia/D.C./you-know AND the sister-in-law and two sweet nieces were in town as well!  Caleb and I considered it a "stay-cation" (I kind of hate that term) and, though our week was slightly crazy with driving all over the place/spending the night at my parents' in the middle of the week, it was seriously a wonderful break from the norm.  Here are some highlights...

Lydia got to hold Baby Alice (she loved doing this, even though -- due to Alice's growth in fatness since their last visit -- Lydia can hardly hold Alice up).

And my parents threw their usually-annual 4th of July party... which is and was a blast! (<-- pun)

Alice thought two-flaggin' it was as good as it got.  She also loves Emily.

She also loves Jennifer buuuut at this point in the evening Alice was asleep, so she didn't get to remember how much she loves Jennifer.  (Note: this is Jennifer's attempt at "Smile like you're in Europe" smile.  I don't know if it worked)

If you are wondering, little Pickle slept through the giant fireworks show without a peep (special treat for Caleb and I!).

And then we just hung out.   And little Sophia (I still want to call her "Baby Soph") played "Wheel on da Bus" on Uncle Eric's phone 80% of the time.  It's an addicting game, let me tell you.

Other highlights:
-Alice is crawling (more to come on that).
-My sister got engaged!! The one who actually lives in Oklahoma.  "We need pictures, Julie!"  Oh, as it turns out, I am a terrible sister.  I was sifting through my pictures from the week and have NONE of sister and fiance.  I will fix that.
-My nieces are still in town and I can't wait to hang out with them some more.
-Summer tans are pretty nice.
-Favorite Lydia quote:
(Scenario: Lydia is jumping into the pool and her mom/Molly is trying to get her to close her mouth before jumping in to avoid water-swallowing)
Molly: Okay, close your mouth, don't smile, go!
Lydia: (jumps in, comes back up, and in a pitiful voice) Why can't I smiiiiile?

Because you shouldn't be happy, Lydia.  That's why.

I can't wait until Alice can talk.