Wednesday, December 29, 2010


Back inside the car, heading once again to some other destination set 2 or more hours away:

Speaking of our toddler after glancing back at her, to discover she's smiling,eyes sparkling, clutching her dolly with both hands, while watching the scenery pass by her backseat window...

Me: I think that she actually likes riding in the car and (suddenly cut off)

My honey-man: "Shhh! Don't jinx it!"

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Thursday, December 23, 2010

Miraculous Departure!

We are all in the car --me, mah honey-man, zee darling angel boy-O and zee lil' sweet potato girlie-- on the way to pick up my sister to take her to the airport, and its 5am AND our car is all packed for us to head to UT straight away, once we've dropped my sister off. Did I mention already that it's 5am?

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Wednesday, December 22, 2010


Meant to post this a month ago to show we all have something to play now ~
Our sweet potato has her own uke now, far left!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Why I Love Mah Honey-Man ~ Reason 62

Because after we'd swapped cars today, so he could take the swagger wagon to the DMV to be registered, when it came time for me to leave work to go claim our girlie from school, and I'd gotten into his car, he had Vince Guaraldi's 'Charlie Brown's Christmas' playing in his CD player!

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Why I Love Mah Honey-Man ~ Reason 61

Because he willingly braved the Henderson DMV all on his own to register our new swagger wagon.

BACKGROUND: Historically, one doesn't get out of spending at least 2 hrs at a NV DMV - - I once spent FIVE HOURS at the Sahara DMV, no joke, no exaggeration. However, this visit for my honey-man, he encountered a record low: a mere 30 minutes! Lucky bastard!

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Friday, December 10, 2010

Five Plants n' Their Pots and Stands, All Gone

Our north-facing backyard is now entirely shaded from any sunshine, soooo, about two weeks ago, we moved our succulents and one mint plant to sit in the sunlight, set to the side of our 2-door garage. This placement allows them not only plenty of sunshine, but we can easily stash them inside the warmth of our garage at night whenever a freezing temps warning is issued.

Last night I got home from work and they were all gone.

And three of them were enormous! - uber heavy, thick enamelware ceramic pots and each one placed on a metal 1-foot tall stand. One of the smaller enameled pots, I'd had it since '95. And the plants themselves, two of them were 9 years old.

Even if someone mistook them to be freebies, left out for the taking, they all were recently pruned and watered, and the watering can still sat with them, half-full (also gone!). They were also placed entirely opposite of our trash can (left out still from the day before), so it's not like they'd been sitting alongside our trash can. It'd be wishful thinking on anyone's part to believe they were unwanted.

I can't believe someone took them.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

After 5 n' a Half Hours

I won't go into the background (details soon to come), but our sweet potato girlie's been sick super sick the last 4 days, beginning last Sunday. Well, today was her big recovery day, apparently...

She 'napped' from 12:30pm until SIX at night! She was totally passed out and never made a single peep in those 5 and a half hours. After 4pm, despite having the baby monitor, I crept into her room two different times just to be sure she was breathing! And although it was dark as could be outside when she finally awoke, and she hadn't eaten since noon, she wasn't off kilter in even the slightest way. She was all sunshine and roses, happy as a lark!

As she sweetly called for me to come upstairs, I came to her immediately, nearly running up the stairs, and as I entered her room, she gave me an enormous "Hi mommie!"

And as she made her move to stand up from inside her crib, I said, " Wow, you sure had a looong nappy! You slept for a long time!"

And her enthusiastic response, full of conviction, with her lil' face sparkling with excitement: "Yes! and now I EAT!"

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

'Ends & Pieces' Fruit Leather No More?

I actually had an "oh my all that's holy nooooo" moment standing in the middle of a Trader Joes aisle last weekend: They no longer stock their bagged "Ends & Pieces" all natural fruit leather (and the sobbing ensues).

Honestly, I do not know what I'm gunna do without it! My baby girlie LOVES the stuff! And because it's ALL NATURAL --absolutely nothing but real, unadulterated fruit, with no other ingredients added-- I have zero guilt letting her eating every day for her heading-for-home snack in the car, and whenever else she pipes up, "Fruit leather please?"

It will cost 5-6 times more to buy the real fruit leather in individual or boxed strips, rather than a nice bulk bag of mixed odd 'ends and pieces'. And our girlie goes through an entire bag of this stuff nearly every week!?! So yeah, a $4 bag of all natural fruit leather (and that's with tax included) versus strips costing $0.50 to $0.75 each, when she eats what amounts to two or more strips in just ONE SITTING nearly EVERY DAY!

We're talking the difference between spending $16 per month or, now, possibly $70 per month in fruit leather to maintain her typical intake?!? I think we're going to have to discover a new favorite snack. *sigh*

P.S. I will never consider 'Fruit Roll Ups', nor any day-glow selection of 'fruit chews' a solution to my new found dilemma here. None of them come near the real food quality of TJ's natural fruit leathers. Instead, they're all loaded with added sugars and artificial colors and whatever else; they're more like a food experiment or a desert at best. Fine for a treat, but not a daily snack in my book. My mum would roll over in her grave otherwise.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Mmmmm, Cranberry Fluff

Just sneaked my 1st spoonful of Cranberry Fluff!

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Friday, November 19, 2010

"Holy Crap!"

The day has finally come: She now repeats the things we say, word for word. Um, yeah, this means the time has come finally to keep it all reeally squeaky clean!

This week we had a few 'oh no, oh no, no, no' moments when one of us had said something we shouldn't have said within earshot of the girlie, and we'd immediately hear her precise echo response. She repeated each of the following gems this past week alone:

God dammit

Oh Shit

F*** - - That came outta her dear father, of course, and he dropped that bomb while holding her in his arms, no less - - However, this was an exceptional moment in that not only is that not something he has ever done while holding his own daughter, or any other child for that matter, but it also happened in the moment we'd discovered we had just hit an enormous wall with something we had underway this week (buying a new car).

Holy Crap -this is my favorite so far because not only did she repeat it perfectly, she mimicked the exact way it had been spoken.


Oh Hell -and she said this one with 100% sunshine in her lil' voice and with a gargantuan smile spread across her bright lil' mug.

Sunday, November 07, 2010

My Honey-Man's Gorgeous Chicky

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Saturday, November 06, 2010

How Can It Be?!

My daughter does not like Mac n' Cheese (notice I used proper noun capitalization there).

First of all, what kind of toddler doesn't like Mac n' Cheese?! Tell me! Tel me, please!!! Secondly, and in our case most importantly, how can I have a child of Nielson family lineage who doesn't like Mac n' Cheese? And everyone knows Mac n' Cheese is MY FAVORITE --and my own daughter, a toddler, she REFUSES to even touch Mac n' Cheese -???

I'm all flummoxed. *sigh*

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Friday, November 05, 2010

Proud Mommie

Tonight during a BBQ at a friend's home, our lil' sweet potato did a complete somersault for her 1st time... And another '1st' tonight --she had her 1st margarita. :(

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The McRib is Back!

Driving home on the hwy, my honey-man sees a billboard: "Ah the McRib is coming back... its just disgusting, why does it keep coming back?"

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Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Lights On, Lights Off

I'm working on my laptop in my bedroom, sitting atop my bed beside the baby monitor -which we still use, yes- and I can hear our sweet potato talking to herself, clearly playing with her crib's nightlight: "Light on (click sound), light off (click sound). Light on (click sound), light off (click sound)."

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Why I Love Mah Honey-Man ~ Reason 60

Because we've been in the car now for nearly 7 hours for which he's patiently spent the last THREE hours listening to me sing loudly along to 65 different Laurie Berkner songs, with him sometimes chiming in and even inserting his own, um, special animal sound effects, all for our lil' sweet potato girlie's amusement.

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Monday, October 25, 2010

Why I Love Mah Honey-Man ~ Reason 59

Because he tries each day to match our baby sweet potato's shoes to her outfit for the day, and when he thinks he's chosen a particularly good match he'll make an effort to proudly point it out to me, to be sure I see our daughter benefiting from his good fashion sense (even though we all know his fashion sense is a bit iffy, which I guess why he's so proud of his better shoe pairing for her outfits!).

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Cheshire Cat Costume!

Although we had a kind of late in the game switcheroo with our original planning, coordinating the Halloween costumes of the angel boy-O and our sweet potato girlie, I luckily found something acceptable and just in time! It should ship out shortly and arrive barely in time for our departure for Utah, Wednesday of next week. But lemme' tell ya, it was harder than I'd expected to score a toddler-sized Cheshire cat costume. The Disney Store doesn't even carry an adult version?!? One thing a bit amusing in my search... I found plenty of adult 'sexy Cheshire cat' costumes online, most including little enough fabric, they could maybe have fit our little baby girlie just fine! Instead, I went with this one: Just imagine this lil' blondie kitty as a little brunette and you'll have a good picture of what our lil' kitty-cat will look like.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Halloween Costumes for The Future, Present, and Past

Absolutely certain we'll have to dress our sweet potato girlie as Princess Leia at some point whether she'll want to or not... other Halloween consume ideas on her mommie's "Wish List of Halloween Costumes for The Future" (NOTE: I began writing this post the 8th of October):

Bumble Bee
Cheshire Cat
A Cookie or a Donut (and one of us parents can dress as a carton of milk!)
Red Devil
Bunny Wabbit
Dorothy from Wizard of Oz
Raggedy Ann

Hmmm... the above list requires she be willing to dress up for Halloween until she's 16 years old! We'll see about that.

She was a dragon last year (Smaug!) and the costume still kinda fits (just barely), so we were planning to reuse it, as the angel boy-O is certain - - make that was certain-- he'd be Frodo again for this Halloween. UPDATE: Just as I suspected, her big bro just returned home from a weekend at Disneyland with plans to be something else than Frodo: The Mad Hatter! Which is a fantastic idea... cuz perfectly enough, I now get to cross something off the lengthy "...Costumes for the Future" list: She'll be the Cheshire Cat!

Halloween Costumes of My Past: Note, I don't remember Halloween before my last year of preschool - - and the person who could tell me, who would remember, she isn't around anymore.

Age 4 or 5: Geisha girl wearing vermilion kimono with a floral and maple leaf printed pattern, and my hair spun in buns round on each side of my little head, complete with coral pink paper fans pinned therein.
Age 6: I'm really not sure - - I have no memory of either my Halloween costume, nor of trick-or-treating my kindergarten year. I would guess I was either a clown or a witch. I'm leaning towards circus clown. I do remember watching the older kids in my school's Halloween parade held in the upstairs gym though, and I remember thinking there sure were a lot of kids dressed as McDonald's 'Fry Guys.'
Age 7: I think I was either a clown or a witch -? Probably a clown again.
Age 8: Witch, I'm sure of it!
Age 9: I'm almost certain I was a witch again.
Age 10: Pat Benatar/Punk rocker - - far too much detail to explain this one. It was great and ridiculous all at once!
Age 11: Scarecrow - I hadn't liked this one at first, but by the night's end, I thought myself that I was freakin' adorable.
Age 12: At the time, I was going for a 'bum' look, donning old over-sized clothes and a scruffy brown hat, and I had a thin layer of Vaseline spread about my cheeks, chin and jawline, rubbed with coffee grounds (which were supplied by a neighbor, who's daughter, Kathleen, was also dressed as a bum as my trick-or-treating partner that year). The grounds were meant to inspire an unshaven look. We were out on our own until nearly 10pm. We thought we were the coolest.
Age 13: I was a Paisley Ghost - and my pillowcase of candy was stolen by some 15 year olds who rushed me. As I turned around to defend myself, it became utterly pointless with a stupid paisley bedsheet over my head, unable to see much detail.
Age 18: I'm fairly certain I did something, but I can't remember - - I should ask Mikie if she remembers.
Age 19: This one, only fellow Ricks College graduates would understand: I dressed as an early-married, early pregnant, Mormon Ricks College student, complete with a teeny, fine print floral patterned Sunday dress and a fake preggers belly - - Mind you, I didn't make it out the door dressed like that(not enough guts to do it), although 3 of my roommates with the same 'costume' went out and made a night of it that year.
Age 20: Zan, the boy-half of the Wonder Twins duo. This was the same Halloween a roomie and I decided to deck out all our friends from our apartment complex as superheros and villains, utilizing all sorts of creative arrangements and treatments of colored tights and long underwear, using both original purchase colors and dyed versions to match our needs, and various felt and/or satin appliques... We had Green Lantern, Poison Ivy, the Riddler, Cat Woman, Supergirl, Superman, Spiderman, Flash, Bat Girl, and Jayna, my other Wonder Twin half, roommate and fellow costume creator. And we all went out in public together as a group, each dressed in character, also behaving in character... like Chris, as Spiderman, who actually sprang atop a grocery cashier's checkout, looking out for Dr. Octopus, or James, as Flash, who ran 'Flash-style' up and down the grocery aisles when we had descended upon a Smith's grocery store in search of 35mm film when I'd run out. At check-out, film in hand, 'Flash' was nowhere to be found and the cashier actually used the store's PA system: "Flash to Checkout 10, Flash? Would Flash please return to the store front to Check out 10, Flash to check out 10." We also had dinner together at TGIFridays before our evening festivities truly began... Humpht. I guess by now I could have easily described the Pat Benatar costume from A to Z after this long-winded portion of my recounting costumes of the past.
Age 21: a Nerd from the 60s
Age 22: a Death bunny, all pasty faced with thick, black eyeliner, fake lashes, and black lipstick, wearing a long, straight, black-haired wig, a short, black velvet shift, and torn black pantyhose over burgundy tights, and a pair heavy heeled, black platform ankle boots. I was dressed like that all day long and it really freaked out a number of Provo, UT locals while I drove and walked about town.

This year I'm gunna be a witch whether the rest of the parents wanna dress up or not! So, I've got a little less than a month now to work on my witch cackle!

AGAIN: I began writing this October 8th...

My Witch Costume UPDATE: I have acquired a black gown with a scoop neck, elongated sleeves, and a hacked up hemline with a slit. I've also scored a black, kind of see-through cape with a hood that has a glittery purple-plum colored spider's web pattern printed all over it, and I've got some dark green and black striped tights to be worn with black, high-heeled ankle boots that don't reach beyond my ankle so that the tights will be more visible. The dark green of the tights is meant to compliment the green sheen seen in the plume of black feathers atop my witch's hat, which is a satiny black with a plum colored sheen to it, and also has 3 satiny plum colored fabric roses, front and center, and a black netted veil that hangs with little black plastic spiders here and there. The hat is what inspired this whole effort: It was my Grandma Joanie's witch's hat. I also have kind of Lady Liberty green costume makeup (more on the gray side than on turquoise) to be applied to any and all visible skin. Ohhh, and direct from Hong Kong (no really, I'm not kidding: post-marked from Hong Kong), I've got some long fake lashes that have a bit of purple feathers set to be aligned with the outside corners of my eyes. And then black lipstick.

Friday, October 08, 2010

Hummus aka Toots!

If you have zero tolerance for talk of bodily functions, this post ain't for you.

I'm not sure how to offer any background info on this one... How to even explain the significance without totally ratting out my honey-man? Hmmm, I'll try to keep it simple, minimum details.

Last night our lil' sweet potato was in a mood, kinda whiney, a bit sulky, a somewhat uncooperative = she was a very tired toddler. And it could of been far worse. There wasn't any spontaneous bursting into tears, no wait, that's not true, that happened twice. Anyhow, I'm rambling. The point is this: She wasn't her best last night, feelin' not so hot, very tired, and when's she's tired, she tends to be a little clingy, which means she's either right at my feet or in my arms at all times.

When it's her bathtime, soon after her dinner, she gets a chance to try her potty. Well, last night, not feeling so great, she required that I sit right beside her the entire time while she did her duty. Sooo, sitting side by side, she on her potty, me on the bathroom floor, my back against the wall, with her little face less than a foot away from mine, give or take, she took her sweet time. I tell you this so you can well imagine how close we were, and how well she could easily turn and look up into my face, talking to me as she sat on her potty.

Sooo, she's sitting on her froggie potty seat and she's singing and humming and talking about poo-poo and pee-pee and Elmo and Elmo on the potty, and I'm watching her and listening to her. She was sitting there for 5 or more minutes (which is a long time for a toddler), so I began to ask her if she'd gone poopie yet or pee-pee, and "Are we all done? No? Maybe next time?" She turns to me with this look on her face, chin down, eyebrows up, eyes wide, and she lets loose a long string of 'toots' (aka farts). Seeing this look of alarm on her darling face, I say "Ahhh, toots! Fluffies! You're tooting." And then she says to me with a look of pure confidence, like she's telling me how it really is:

"Hummusss" [spoken with long, drawn out emphasis placed on the 's']

I look at her all confused, not certain I've heard her right. She quickly repeats herself with 100% certainty, this time shortening the 's' sound some:


I ask her, "Hummus?""

With great enthusiasm, she turns to me as she tries to stand from her potty seat, and with her little mug mere inches from mine, she toots some more, now standing in my lap, and she squeals and claps:


Still a bit perplexed, but laughing now in response, I ask her again, "Hummus?" - - she conquers, nodding her head emphatically, tooting some more almost as if in response.

She turns from me and sits again on her potty, toots a last time, and nodding confidently, she turns to me once more and tells me "Hummus."

Okay, so what the heck was that? Here's my 100% certain theory: Whenever any one of us in our home eats hummus, there is some seriously flatulent consequences to follow within 24 hours of consumption. Same goes for our lil' sweet potato girlie. Well, once those consequences show up, whether it's me or my honey-man, we'll speak aloud the simple one-word explanation for all the, um, tooting, saying nothing more: "Hummus"

Apparently, our observant toddler has picked up on this.

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

My Lil' Dreamboat

Cheesy as this may sound, there's nothing more serenely satisfying to me than watching my lil' babe peacefully sleep. See, when she's sleeping, she's not running around, neither squawking nor squealing; she's lying there quiet and still, and it is precisely the latter point which is most significant amongst the aforementioned 'well duh' observations about sleeping children... When she's motionless, sleeping, I can adoringly gaze upon her, scanning over every feature, every tiny detail of her physical being, and I find her to be deliciously cute and perfectly whole. Gratitude floods my being and I cannot contain my pride and joy whenever I find the chance to spy her moments of contented sleep.

Naah, I'm not biased, no way!

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Sunday, October 03, 2010

Our Weekend Project with The Angel Boy-O: Done!


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Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Miss You

I thought to write about this the night it happened, but it was too much.

Last Sunday night we had a Skype call with the angel boy-O. Our girlie had been asking about him throughout that entire day, and several times that weekend, she would pound her chubby hands, fingers splayed, upon his bedroom door while shouting his name. Every time I'd told her that he wasn't in there, three times letting her into his room so she could see he was not there, she would whine in response and hold out her hands, palms up and out, near her shoulder height, asking where is he?

The Skype call was timed 15 minutes before her bedtime routine was to begin, so she was already a bit tired and noodle-like, plus she'd spent most the day fighting an unexpected fever that had hit around noon. When it was time to end the Skype call and get her upstairs and ready for bed, she began to whine some as she was asked to blow kisses and say goodbye to everyone, which included her big brother, his mommie and his step-dad as well. She began to whimper as we encouraged her to tell everyone she loved them, and the angel boy-O expressed his concern as to what was wrong as she whimpered and whined away. I'm not sure if I remember this correctly or not --my memory is clouded by what happened next-- but I tried to explain for him that she's tired and hasn't been feeling well today, and she misses you a lot, and then her pouty bottom lip shot out, and with tears welling in her little eyes, she told him herself with her own tiny voice, simply put:

"Miss you," she said and then she began to cry... as did we all after that moment.

It was a darling and truly heartbreaking all at once. Poor lil' girlie, she adores her big brother so much. And poor boy-O, he adores and misses his baby sissy everyday. That's a good thing, but it hurts as well.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Toddler Property Laws: Our Sweet Potato's New Code of Conduct

1. If I like it, it's mine.

2. If it's in my hand, it's mine.

3. If I can take it from you, it's mine.

4. If I had it a little while ago, it's mine.

5. If it's mine, it must never appear to be yours in any way.

6. If I'm doing or building something, all the pieces are mine.

7. If it looks just like mine, it is mine.

8. If I saw it first, it's mine.

9. If you are playing with something and you put it down, it automatically becomes mine.

10. If it's broken, the parts are still mine

This list made me laugh so hard, reading it and hearing my own girlie's teeny voice in my head, "my banana," seeing her act out each of these 'laws' to the letter these days. She's not too fierce yet with the whole 'mine, mine' mentality, but it grows stronger each passing week.

Thank you for this, Leslie! ~you rock~ OXO

Why I Love Mah Honey-Man ~ Reason 58

Because in my honey-man's earnest effort to give me the full report on our daughter's first poo-poo in the potty experience (which I'd missed entirely), he was thoughtful enough to note and include such details as the color and texture, only because he KNEW I'd want to know.

And he took pictures! Nooo, not of the doody itself, but of our lil' girlie sitting on the potty seat with a darling wide-eyed, but concentrated look of focus on her face that seems to communicate she knows what she's doing is momentous!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Poo-Poo in the Potty!

Who knew POOP could be soooo exciting!?! Earlier this morning, sitting on a cushy child's potty seat with handles, our lil' baby sweet potato girlie went poo-poo in the BIG toilet for the FIRST TIME EVAH!! And she did it willingly - - she had NEVER before shown interest in using the potty for poopy... Before today, any time we've asked her if she needs to go poopy, wants to go poopy, wants to try to go poopy, or has she gone poopy? - - her reply has ALWAYS been No! But her daddy got her to try... and she did it! She spent 10 minutes, well focused on the task at hand, poopin' like a big girl!

And I was NOT there... And I am soooo JEALOUS that I missed it!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

The 1st Pic Was Last Nite n' This is Owen This AM

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Dozing Away in His New 'Bed'

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Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Flexing Her Lil' Autonomy Muscles

Our lil' sweet potato girlie is really, really, really trying hard to assert herself these days... what's hers, what's not, what she wants, what she doesn't want, etc.

Last night she was having a hard time accepting it was time to eat dinner. She only wanted to be outside, to ride her pony, to go on a wagon ride, to go swimming, to blow bubbles, to get back in her stroller, to change her shirt, to wear socks, to take the socks off, to change her shoes, and to change her shoes again, etc. But eat dinner? Noooooo!

So I someone got her in her highchair despite her wishes, and I quickly offered her some white cheddar puffs to munch while I'd prepare her real dinner, which she later refused, by the way. Her daddy had come home by that point, and he offered her a slice of cheddar cheese to eat as well, which she happily took, waving it around in the air for a little while, threatening off and on to toss it down to the floor. My honey-man told her it was good and yummy cheese and to please eat it. She instead began slapping the cheese on her highchair tray, so, seeing she clearly wasn't interested in the cheese as food, he casually took it from her and gave it a nibble, immediately handing her the bitten slice back, again telling her the cheese is soooo good.

You would have thought he'd, I dunno, done something horribly, horribly wrong, like. She froze, cheese in hand, looking up at him. Her bottom lip shot out, her chin began to tremble and her eyes welled up with big, fat, enormous tears... In an alarmed, yet almost pleaded tone, about to burst into cascading tears, she croaked: "My cheese, mine...." She was just absolutely shocked and mortified that he had taken HER cheese and HE'D EATEN IT!?! I jumped in and told her it's such lovely, yummy, delicious cheese, don't you want to share it with daddy, right? And I asked her if she would please share a nibble of her cheese with mommie too. At first, she clutched her cheese slice to her chest, full on crying now. I told her I was sorry, and her daddy told her he was sorry he hadn't asked her first. After our apologies, she sniffed, smiled and enthusiastically offered me a bite of her slice. I then told her it was okay, she could keep her cheese all to herself, that "it's your cheese, yes," at which point, she full on stopped crying, broke into a smile and tore off a piece, waving it up at me, yelling "Eat, eat! Eat my cheese!", which I couldn't refuse. I leaned toward her and took a little bite with my own mouth and she was utterly delighted, breaking off another piece and another, wanting me to eat it all! And she offered her daddy some as well.

She's way too cute.

Monday, September 20, 2010


My fingers are hurtin' from practice! Funny how typing this via Blackberry is bothersome to my tender fingertips, merely helping to hold this thing as I thumb-type!
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Why I Love Mah Honey-Man ~ Reason 57

Because I could dye my hair mustard yellow and he'd still think I'm hot no matter, not that I'm looking to go "French's Classic Mustard" anytime soon or ever. Mustard yellow is the first extreme example to come to my mind in order to make the following point: My honey-man thinks I'm a tasty treat no matter what I do to myself, and although I do believe he's crazy, it's nice to know my honey-man loves me so much, his sense of attractive can contend with any awkward phase I might be going through...

I've been trying to grow my hair out since our sweet potato was born, and it'd reached a terribly awkward phase where there are 3 different layers of 3 different lengths growing and the hair has become long enough that the top layer weights it all down, discouraging any nice waves and all playful flipping action, instead, causing me to resemble a wet dog.

So, of course, I permed my own hair late last Friday night while my honey-man was pulling an all-nighter on a project. I sent him a text 'round 1am: "My new nickname: Curly"

I could look like a poodle and he'd tell me I'm cute --which I don't, I mean, I don't look like a poodle. The perm took very nicely- but he did have to brace himself until the following morning to see what I'd done.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Why I Love Mah Honey-Man ~ Reason 56

Because I woke this morning not only to the dulcet 'harp chords' of his iPhone's alarm clock, but thereafter, the tones of him playing the game 'blue block' on his iPhone in bed.

Monday, September 13, 2010

This Would Be The MASSIVE Post: PART I of II

Our baby girl is nearly 18 months old. On a daily basis she's doing and saying new things and she's just blowing my mind away with how fun and clever and sooo way CUTE she is. It's unbelievable how quickly she's picking up stuff. Over a month ago, she reached the point where we can ask her to say something and she'll valiantly give it her best effort to repeat the word.

A couple weeks ago, she began saying the following things with perfect clarity:
No way - - this one is absolutely adorable
Nope - - this one is equally absolutely adorable
Night-night - - this one is also equally absolutely adorable
Again please - - " "
Fruit leather - - " "
Well, actually, that last one is not yet spoken with perfect clarity, but I love it whenever she tries.
And what I love most is any and all unsolicited "Thank you Mommie"s - - Yes, this one, most of all, melts my heart to pure, utter gooey, lovey-dovey mush.

Over the summer she discovered Elmo - - Can I say Elmo is like baby crack! She adores Elmo, although she's only ever watched Sesame Street once while we were in Iowa visiting my parents. That and a YouTube video of Elmo singing his ABCs with the ever-so amazing India Arie. Yeah, I've shamelessly whipped that one out on my Blackberry a few times in order to save me from a couple public toddler-meltdowns. Elmo is magic! And the way she --or any toddler-- says his name is just pure cuteness!

My honey-man speaks French most of the time to our lil' chica unless others are around, and sometimes that'll include me, in that he'll speak English to her for my basic understanding as to what's going on. We've learned there are a few things for which she favors the French terms over English, like hat, singing, and whenever she asks to call someone on the phone. There's a lot more she's says in French, and we're certain there's a lot she's trying to say in French, but we haven't figured out all of it. And there's a number of other things she can say in French, but she'll prefer to say them in English. If she's dealing with her father though and I'm not around, she'll use her French. And of course there are still many times she's using certain sounds repeatedly, but neither of us can figure out what she's trying to say, English or French.

She loves it when I sing to her and it could be anything: The Beatles, Laurie Berkner, Bee Gees, Audioslave, anything! PLEASE NOTE: I am not a particularly good singer. At bedtime, there are a few select songs I'll sing to her without the music playing. With her little reading lamp on, we'll first sit and read three to six (or 10) different books, and thereafter, lights out, we'll sit rocking in her glider chair before I set her in her crib for sleepy time. In the dark, as I sing to her, she'll say either 'more' or 'again' a mere second or two before the song ends for me to continue singing. And sometimes when she's had enough, she'll tell me 'Bye' once I'm done with a song, which means she's ready to be laid down to sleep - - Although she now knows how to say Night-night and will say it, she always ends our goodnight hugs and kisses with 'bye', nonetheless. She could be totally drowsy and half asleep, but as I lay her down, she'll enthusiastically pipe up, 'Bye Mommie.'

Speaking of bedtimes... We've successfully pushed our sweet potato's bedtime to 7:30pm! Plus an occasional 8pm bedtime inserted here and there is now do-able without major consequences for everyone. Yes --finally-- getting her to bed later actually results in some time during our weekday mornings to get ready for work without our squealing, squawking, very hungry toddler underfoot as early as 5:30-6am-ish. And weekends now? By Friday night, she's beat after a long, busy week, just slaphappy tired, so she'll wake up Saturday morning around 7:30am, which is bliss for us compared to her 5:30am-6am wake up calls of only a couple months ago. Last weekend, she slept until an unheard of 9am! CORRECTION: Now I don't know how this slipped my mind, but she actually slept in until 10AM! Yup, miraculous!
However, if more than a couple late weeknights happen, we wind up having to wake her in the mornings in order for us to have her ready in time for us to leave for work. And she winds up very overtired; by Friday she'll be a noodle. Although she's general chipper as could be whether she wakes up on her own or not, no matter how cute and perky she is to see me standing above her crib, I don't like waking her. By the end of any weekday for which we've had to wake her in the morning, by dinnertime that day, she has to be in bed by 7pm, no later. She really needs her sleep.

On Saturdays for the last month, we fully expect hour lil' chica's afternoon nap to last for two n' a half hours, minimum, if not three full, long hours. And after a two-week long break from daycare in August, the Saturday afternoon nap has become sacred in our home. Without it, the rest of the weekend can be a bit of a challenge.

She really loves dress up. There's been several times I arrive at her daycare to take her home and although dress up play has ended over an hour ago, all put away, she'll still be wearing the fireman's jacket or the gardening boots. We dug out her Halloween costume from last year - a brightly colored dragon suit and we joked she was Smaug, since her big bro dressed as Frodo. So yeah, we have the dragon costume out and accessible and she loves to wear it, complete with clawed mittens and horned headgear. Although it fits for now, we're certain she'll be out of it before Halloween this year.

The record thus far for the longest amount of time she's kept her piggy-tails intact: 1 hour

She says her brother's name very clearly now, although she'll occasionally get a bit lazy about it and it'll sound more like she's saying 'babe.' So yeah, she'll ask for her brother and point him out in our family photos, shouting his name. And when he's on the phone, she'll call out his name, shortly followed by his step-dad's name - - she loves and adores the boy-O, but she loves his step-dad as well, almost like she's got a crush on him, no joke. Correction: She DOES have a crush on him. Sometimes she truly swoons over him, as if smitten. Well, and to be even more truthful, she just seems to generally like the guys. It's nothing we've either encouraged nor restricted in any way. She just really likes the boys. She'll be a bit shy, outright coy, and then next thing you know, she'll either go ahead and climb up into their lap or she'll ask to be picked up; she butters 'em right up. But women? She honestly doesn't warm to women as quickly as she does the boys. It's just a fact. We had a friend in town this weekend, someone she hasn't seen since she was 4 months old. By mid-evening, she was asking to sit in his lap and lounging on him as if he were her very own chaise.

Okay - I'm not done with this post... To be continued, yes. I've simply got to get myself to bed. I can't keep my eyes open any long due to the muscle relaxer I took two hours ago for my back which has been threatening to act out - - I'd thrown in out nearly a month ago is all, and I can't afford to throw it out again, not anytime soon. G'nighty night for now.

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Total Ham: Watch Out!

This past Monday morning, I was a hormonal, totally imbalanced, rollercoastery mess of emotion... and today? I'm just high as a kite happy! Today, I'm totally dripping with sappy hamminess. Sooo, if you're not in a good position to happily handle me and all my bright, glowing sunshine, steer might be infectious!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Be Forwarned... I feel a MASSIVE post coming on...

So much has happened over the last 6 months - - things I wish I'd written about sooner. And the last 3 months, those have been especially busy... I'll be making a last ditch effort very soon to write up as much as I can, yes, very soon (promise!).

Monday, August 23, 2010

I just won $150!!!! Cash!!! Playing casino BINGO?!? A BINGO virgin, playing for my 1st time... Woooooo-hooooo!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Ending the Summer

The angel boy-O returned to Utah the weekend of August 8th. That Sunday he left, his daddy was off to Vermont two days later for a week-long conference, and he returned just this past Sunday. So for the first full week spent without the boy-O, I was alone with just the girlie, and the resulting quiet in our home, it was excruciating. Yeah, the house is way too quiet without him.

I miss most watching the two cuties wrestling amongst the thrown couch cushions and pillows, with him eating her cheeks whenever he can get a bite, tickling her arms and leggies as she squeals and screams, trying her best to free herself and scramble away from him, and he chases her into a corner of the kitchen where, as she giggles like mad, he devours her ankles... and all this usually happens just as she's supposed to be settling down for bedtime.

Ever since the boy-O left, I've been wanting this summer to come to a sudden end - - please, oh puhleeze! I'm tired to being confined to air conditioned spaces!! I need some cooler weather and pronto, so we can get ourselves out of the house without it being limited to either a swimming pool or nothing more than runs to either Trader Joes or the nearby Target. I exaggerate, of course. We've managed quite well this summer to keep ourselves busy and out of the house, and this past week, without the boy-O and my honey-man, was not much different really. It was just too quiet. But I am tired of figuring out ways to get out of the house and to avoid the Vegas heat as well.

I should mention in greater detail how we have been swimming a lot, indeed, which has been a lot of fun, but until recently, our sweet potato enjoyed running in circles around the perimeter of the pool more than she actually enjoyed swimming in the pool! Last week --and this week as well, which was a surprise to us, but that's a whole 'nuther story-- having no daycare service available because the girlie's preschool is closed for teacher development, I had a friend's teenage daughter watching her last Monday thru Wednesday. This girl is a swimmer --and a very good one- so I'd told her she could take our wee girl swimming in our development's pool if she wanted. I don't know what she did differently, but by last Friday, our lil' sweet potato became brave enough to try entering the pool without assistance, and was so no matter where I was in relation to her! So Saturday morning, off to Target we went to buy her a lil' hot pink Stearns infant life vest... I was hopeful, yet super skeptical seeing its lousy design, as was my honey-man when I'd called and spoken to him about it on the phone (he had no hope at all that it would work right).

The life vest was a total bust... my honey-man was right; I might as well drown her myself than have her wear one of those horrible things!! It situates her face right at water level!?! Hello?! Her first (and only) time wearing the blasted thing, I was reaching her how to float on her back, but as soon as she relaxed and let herself go, she got reeeally excited, and in her effort to get upright, certainly intending to clap a darling baby-hooray, the vest plunged her forward and downward at once, and she swallowed a bunch of water before I could lift her, and she burst into choking and hysterical tears.

Anyhow, I hadn't written here in a while because we've been busy with life, trying to enjoy the boy-O as much as we could before he was to return home to Utah. This post isn't terribly organized... jumping around here and there, leaving out tons of details/background. I threw my back out Sunday night in the same hour I'd laid our girlie down for bed and my honey-man returned home, and I'm on Lortab right now = I hate the stuff! Can't finish my thoughts (or sentences for that matter). The point of this post was to share the following: I miss our angel boy-O, real bad. I have to fight to not call him every morning and every night since he left.

I need to lay back down now.

P.S. I tagged this post with the "Blantant Product Blog" label, but in this case, it would be an ANTI-product plug.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010


There are things going on worth writing about, but I'm too busy with those things to write about them right now. More soon, soon being a relative term!

Monday, August 02, 2010

Got my lil' fam together, all of us on a plane bout 2 take off n' I'm delighted w/ the silliness of it all...the already bored 12 yr old n' a totally slap-happy toddler.

New Signing: Day, Sun, Stars, Clouds

New words: Sparkle and Monkey

Friday, July 30, 2010

'Dubie' is always how I thought a "hey man, pass me that dubie" would be spelled... "Doobie" had never ever occured to me?!?

For the 1st time in my life, I learned the Doobie Brothers are not in any way comprised including a pair of brothers with the last name of 'Doobie' -yup.

Friday, July 23, 2010

She can open doors now!?! Help us!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Honey-man's 1st full wk owning an iPhone is revolutionizing our marriage now that he can txt n' give n' receive needed info w/o having 2 pick up a phone call.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Pee Pee in the Potty! ~ Boo-yah!

For the first time evah our lil' sweet potato went pee pee in the potty - - WOOO-HOOOO! Let it be known: There was no coercion involved = no bribing or begging or cajoling. She used the potty on her own accord!

I was getting her ready for her bath and already had her stripped down to her diaper. She indicated she was about to go potty, so I took her diaper off, and she walked right over and sat her teeny tookas on her potty, and with a serious look on her face, concentrating on the next step, she went pee pee, and then her little face lit up with her eyebrows high and a huge open-mouth smile of amazement and with darling little giggle she began to clap ~ She was soooooo proud of herself! I called her daddy and her big brother to come upstairs to see what she'd done in her potty and we all clapped and praised her for her achievement. I gave her some tissue to wipe, and then she stood up, turned round, still clapping, and she proudly pointed to the potty, admiring the little puddle she'd left inside it.

When I lifted the dump dish to the toilet, she became a bit distraught - - "Mine!" I told her it had to be thrown away and dumped it into the toilet, and told her to say goodbye to her pee pee. With a tilt of her head and a darling pause of recognition crossing her face, she abandoned her protest, smiled happily and said bye-bye with a wave of her hand, peeking down into the toilet, and then she marched over the side of the tub, ready for her bath.

We'll see when this kind of thing will happen again with any kind of regularity - - She lets us know all the time now when she does a number in her diaper, but she hasn't gravitated to her potty really. I'll be trying to keep my hopes low. But today? Today was quite the day for our baby girlie!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Is Calgon Still Around?

I need a long, hot n' steamy bath and a good book to lose myself in.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Was it Just a Week Ago?

We returned from our trip to claim the boy-O last Monday, as in Monday of last week. How is it that an entire week has already come n' gone since our return home?!?

Well, I mean to write about our trip, I do - - but we hit the ground running once back home and we haven't really had much down time. Maybe things will settle down as this week passes, but I doubt it!

Monday, June 28, 2010

Totally Jazzed for Jellystone

Taking at 10am break here -- haven't had my coffee yet, and I can't see straight (although the latter is caused only by a lack of sleep). I'm totally jazzed outta my mind for our Yellowstone trip and to claim the boy-O from his summer camp! I slept like crap last night, tossing and turning, just too excited to settle. This always happens before a big trip.

At least I no longer have that damned tendency to pull an all-nighter the very night before we're to leave someplace.... those n' babies don't mix too well.


Before getting settled in for a new day at work --my last for the next week-- I was sure to check "Straight Outta Lynwood" made it on the iPod for the car, especially for the angel boy-O's enjoyment come our drive home from Yellowstone. He and I can sing all the words to "White & Nerdy" played on repeat, all that we want, no matter how hard my honey-man shall protest.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

What Did She Say?

Our lil' sweet potato's becoming quite a talker ~ The latest additions to her spoken vocabulary, plus some modifications of previous spoken words:

Hi andBye - - and bye just became 'buh-bye' this last week.
Mine (that's a favorite of hers which arrived on the scene 2 weeks ago, along with 'No')
Baubles for bubbles
Ball (sounds like ball, but with the 'L' nearly cut off)
Bwoon for balloon
Bahr for bear
Ho for hose
Fawa for flower
Cah for car
Bow for boat
Woo-woo for a train
Duck - -went from 'dah' to becoming her first word spoken with a hard 'K'
Shwa-wa for shower
BTW, she still refuses any attempt to say the word 'water'...
Cup -spoken as is
Spoo for spoon - - And she says 'bwah' for fork, but I don't get at all how she thinks to call it that, especially now that she's mastering the sound of a hard 'K'
Yeah, so Milk is no longer "mil" - - spoken now with a hard 'K' ending, and Book also has a hard 'K', finally - - Book had been her first word, sans the hard 'K'
Peee for peas
Ba-ba-ba for banana
And her peach is spoken in French - - sounds like 'paysh'
Yo for yogurt and 'bir' for berries of any kind.

She still says 'bi-bi' for her blankie and now a single 'bi' for her binky. Occasionally she'll refer to her bunny as her bi-bi as well.
She doesn't drink bottles anymore, so no more 'ba' for bottles, but she'll say bouteille when referring to her sippy cup, which is French for bottle. And she asks for both her socks (bas) and her shoes (soulier) using French.

Animal noises she'll imitate listed in order from the first to the very latest: Doggie, elephant (complete with a chubby arm flung upward from her own face as an elephant's trunk), lion (this one is ferociously cute), horse (complete with flapping-lip blows), owl (complete with huge open eyes), a sheep (while shaking her head back n' forth - - and I don't know why), monkey (my own monkey imitations are pretty rowdy, but hers are a bit tentative yet, although she giggles every time I join in), cat (finally!!!), birdie, mouse, bear, a snake.

Body parts she can point to when asked to do so: Hair, ears, head, forehead, eyebrows, eyes and eyelashes, nose, cheeks, chin [she sometimes confuses the latter two - - although she really loves to point to her chin, cuz I then eat hers!], neck [I eat her neck too, all the time], elbow, arm, bellybutton [my very favoritest way to distract her is to suddenly ask her where her bellybutton is], tummy, bummy, back, hands, thumb, fingies, knee, leg, foot, heel, and toes.

All the signs she's using now:
All done
Brush Teeth
Wash hands
Blow nose
Wipe face
Train with a 'wooo-wooo'
Car with accompanying 'beep-beep' sounds
And her airplane is much improved, complete with flying sounds

We're still working on Thank you. And sorry.

And she can point out/identify over 200 images in her 'big books.' I think she's doin' purty dang good.

P.S. I forgot some! She both says the word and signs for 'juice' and she can identify her teeth and her tongue. And she tries to jump to imitate a frog!

Racked Up n' Inventoried - - Um, is that even a word?

We successfully installed our roof rack on the Matrix the other night - - and although the Thule cargo bag meant to contain up to 17 cubic feet of gear lays, oohh, about 15 inches in length past the rear rail bar, it'll work (fingers crossed).

Our camping trips of the past, were, um, well, excessive in terms of readiness. We've been quite, let's say, thorough in terms of our planning; planning for anything that may possibly be needed. For this latest trip, however, off to Yellowstone with two kids in the car who will need room to breathe, it calls for seriously brutal consolidation measures.

I spent a couple hours in the garage last night running an inventory of sorts. This was a feat in itself, rummaging around FOUR different bins of camping/hiking gear, and although they're highly organized, the sheer volume to sort through was daunting all at once. At least each bin is categorized by types of gear... You can -no, you should- skip this next part- - This is another listing inventory exercise of mine meant for my benefit (I love lists, um, because I'm a total dork that way, amongst other ways):

1) Light-producing/propane/fire-related bin: 2 massive citronella candles, one bug-attracting-killing lantern thingy, box of wooden matches, butane lighter, grilling charcoal, 2 packs of fire starter, spare newspapers stash, 2 pivoting handheld flashlights, 2 LED lanterns, one which has a remote control for inside the tent, 1 propane lantern and a duel-fuel lantern. And we'll be taking only the LED lanterns this trip due to our highly curious, highly assertive sweet potato. Oh, and this bin also holds 2 axes (did I spell that plural right?) and a few bungees for hanging up lanterns.

2) Our 2nd largest bin contains all our cooking supplies: 5 gallon collapsible water container, 1 gallon water container with side handle, two 1-qt containers, 3 collapsible food storage containers with lids, our 'french toast dipping' container with lid, butter container with lid, 8 various teeny-tiny spice/condiment containers (creamer, sugar, flour, french toast spices, ketchup, mustard, mayo and our favorite grilling spice mix), 1 medium sized mixing bowl that our sauce pan with lid sits inside, 2 mess kits, 1 dutch oven, 1 cast iron fry pan, 1 massive non-stick frying pan, a non-stick griddle, 1 splatter screen, 6 roasting sticks, an extra-wide roll of heavy duty aluminum foil, large roll of 1/2 sheet paper towels, 2 mesh mess drawstring bags for hanging up wet and/or dirty dishes, a 6"-deep bin for washing dishes, a 9 cup percolator and a large enamel, 16 cup percolator as well, and and we have enough serving gear for 8 people - - plates, bowls, cups, and mugs, plus a red tool box that holds all our cooking utensils; 2 chef's knives, 2 flat n' 2 rubber spatulas, 2 small whisks, 2 stirring spoons of varying lengths, a small grater, 1 can/bottle opener, various tongs (3), enough nylon flatware for 8 people, a set of kabob skewers, other spices, dish soap, extra matches, an extra butane lighter, small plastic grocery bags and small Ziplocs, and a container for herbal teas and cocoa.

3) Our largest bin holds all our sleeping gear: 2 floor pads, a queen-sized air mattress, 2 uber large, multi-heavy-duty Mexican wool blankets, n' 6 different sleeping bags - yes, 6 for a family of 4... Two of them are meant for below freezing temps. And we have two 'truckers' blankets as well. [BACKGROUND INFO: Early 2001, I'd bought an old Honda Civic hatchback from a trucker who lived in my neighborhood at the time. The car had belonged to his wife, who had also been a trucker. In the car I'd later found two matching, very old, navy, gray n' orange plaid, merino wool throw blankets in the back, but he didn't want them - - they had been he and his wife's car-cuddling blankets, he'd told me, and he asked me to please keep them and use them well. They're very soft and cozy, and one of these blankets was the very blanket the angel boy-O had asked me for, after our first trip to the Santa Monica beach together in 2004. The boy-O slept with that blanket for several months after I'd given it to him. A couple years ago, before a camping trip to Zion, he had suggested, all on his own, that we keep the two blankets together for campfire-cuddling, thus the 'truckers' blankets are now our campfire blankets.

4) This bin contains all our containment/shelter-related gear: A roll of large, black trash bags, other various trash bag sizes, gargantuan Ziploc storage bags to keep things dry, a container filled with various bungee cords, 3 different kids of lashings, some plain old rope, 3 tarps (two 6x9, one 9x12), and our 6-person tent. And there's a red, child-sized, folding camp chair kept in this bin as well. It had been the angel boy-O's chair and now his lil' sissy will be using it. Written along the back in casual hand-type font in yellow print, reads "Little Camper."

We also have 3 other folding camp chairs - - but I'm almost sure we won't have room for them this trip (despite my honey-man's insisting) = I don't imagine we'll really need them, with all our running around Yellowstone during the day, coming back to our campsite for dinner, juggling our lil' pee-wee, getting her to bed, etc. Hmmm... maybe after the kids are out, we could sit n' soak in the forest sounds n' campfire crackle... but we could sit on a log, side-by-side n' do that just as well, and with our campfire-cuddling blankets! For sure we'll be taking the girlie's Kelty pack. Oh, and we should bring the 5-gallon shower bag for easier hand rinsing... And now the random rambling has begun. There's more gear I could list, but I've got other things to do... like write about our sweet potato's vocabulary development!

P.S. I told my honey-man that his juggling pins WILL NOT be coming on this trip... especially when every time he's brought them camping, he only brings them out the very morning we're packing up to leave camp! For the sake of principle alone, he winds up juggling for the 5 minutes before we pull out, just so he can say there was reason to bring them. I love my little clown-man, I mean, mah honey-man.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Heading North to Jellystone

For the past week now, the angel boy-O has been at an awesome summer camp up near Dubois, WY, of all places. This camp is, can I say, a totally kick ass summer camp. I'm certain he's having the time of his life!

The camp ends June 30th, so we'll be leaving town the 29th, at the crack of dawn, to head up north. After 10+ hrs of driving [RELATED TANGENT: I soooo hope our sweet potato girlie does okay in the car, as she's been such a fantastic lil' car traveler to date, but she's such an active busy body now, I'm afraid she'll go nuts confined in the car for that long, even if we plan take a break every 2 hours!], we'll overnite it in Bear Lake with my Grams. From there we'll leave EARLY, EARLY, the morning of the 30th, in order to drive up to Jackson, WY and then SE, down to Dubois to claim the boy-O by 11am. I'm certain we're all gunna lose it -the girlie too- when we get our hands on him!

Once we've gone through the whole check-out rigmarole and we've somehow added his pack n' gear to our packed-to-the-gills car, we'll return to Jackson for some minor grocery shopping and then we'll head further north through Grand Teton and into Yellowstone Park. We'd originally planned 5 days of camping, and the boy-O's mommie n' step-dad were to join us, but work schedules are what they are, so it's just us now, and with my new found concerns re: overnight camping in bear territory (and that's a WHOLE 'NUTHER STORY THERE!), and this being the girlie's very first camping trip, we've decided to opt for only 3 nights of camping. We'll be at the Madison campground, my 2nd favorite to Norris. Then we'll spend the boy's birthday back in Bear Lake with my mum's fam, and their valley's 4th of July celebrations, and by noontime on the 4th, we'll be staying in Ogden, UT with the boy-O's mommie's own fam, staying overnight there. We'll spend the 5th driving back home to Vegas... after we've gone to Hires in SLC.

And I'm certain that once we're home and all unpacked, I'll bawl, homesick for our UT and ID families... but let's not get ahead of myself, right?

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Going Pink?

If we weren't going to be in Iowa the end of July, visiting my parents, and getting our family portrait taken for the first time since 2007, I think I'd go back to pink highlights = = clearly bored with my hair and this whole 'growing my hair out' phase... My honey-man tells me to be patient and to leave it alone and tells me again to leave it alone, as I reach for the hair-cutting scissors. *sigh* I'm trying hard to leave it alone.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Why I Love Mah Honey-Man ~ Reason 55

Because morning or night, he brushes his teeth while laying on our bed. For the first time in 6 years' time, I asked him tonight why he does this. I'd never asked him before because it was always so clear that it's what he always does, and as he lays there brushing his teeth, his eyes are always closed with a peaceful expression on his face, and anything I may say while he's brushing his teeth, he doesn't -or can't- hear me anyhow, and I've never really wanted to interrupt this zen-like state he seems to fall into whenever brushing his teeth.

So yeah, I was already in bed and reading something, and he comes over in his boxers with his toothbrush, and he lays down beside me, and he begins to brushaway. And for some reason, it struck me so funny that he does this... So, laughing -and mind you, he's completely unresponsive to my erruptive giggle fit- I finally, for the first time, ask him why he always brushes his teeth lying on the bed: With his eyes still closed, he paused long enough to tell me it's so he'll be sure to take his time to do a good job of it, and so as to not waste water, to avoid standing at the sink, letting the water run.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Why I Love Mah Honey-Man ~ Reason 54

Because he insisted (threatened actually), on all days to do so, that I sleep in this morning -on Father's Day- so he could spend some one on one time with our lil' sweet potato.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

"Bye" aka "No Thanks"

For about a months' time, before our lil' sweet potato caught on to the whole "No" thing last week, whenever she didn't want to either take or do something, she would instead tell us "Bye," while waving a chubby lil' hand in the air to indicate her darling version of "No thanks."

Last night when I wanted to change her diaper first, before she was to eat her dinner, she gave me a clever lil' grin and turned away with a wave goodbye, headed for the stairs, squealing "Bye!"

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

You Ain't Ready for this Jelly- ?!?

I never knew that what they were singing in the song "Bootylicious" was this:

"I don't think you're ready for this jelly."

And now I can't get this out of my head...

Gunna hafta play the chicken song now... I know that's just trading one earworm for another, but I just can't be caught singing "I don't think you're ready for this jelly."

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Had I Known...

...that $80 in cash (when I NEVER CARRY CASH!?!) and my digital camera worth $350 would be stolen during the mid-day of a normal blahzaay workday, right outta my bag which was stashed in the lowest left-hand, very closed drawer of my office desk, located the furthest away from the door into my office, I wouldn't have bought (fill in the blank) or (fill in the blank).

Just sayin'.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Life As We Know It Has Forever Changed

My darling baby sweet potato girlie, she said the word "NO" for the first time yesterday morning and she meant it.

And earlier tonight she ramped it up with some repetitive "No-No's"

Yeah, we're done for.

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Becoming Her Own Little Person

After work today, as usual, I had to go claim my lil' sweet potato girlie from her preschool. When I arrived, she was in the midst of a diaper change and she didn't yet know I was there for her, but I could see her inside the changing room through it's top-to-bottom glass door.

After she was all clean n' changed, the teacher who had her, she set my lil' babe on her feet facing the door. My lil' toddler then turned round and lunged for the teacher's legs to give her a big thank-you hug, and she looked up at the teacher with a huge, uber darling smile while patting at one of the teacher's knees, and then my lil' chica spun right back around n' took off for the door with a squeal that could be heard from where I stood.

And then she saw me and she squealed again, even louder, "mommie!" and with 100% focus upon my face, she made a bee-line for me, smiling the whole way. As she met me, she threw herself into my legs, arms spread for giant leg-hug, all while looking up at me, "Moma, mahhhmmiee", she cooed. As I knelt down to her height, she offered me a sweet lil' puckered kiss, and she leaned her head into my shoulder, and she hugged me and held me and she gently patted the side of my face with one of her lil' chubby hands, all the while softly cooing "moma, moma, mommie."

And she does this kind of thing nearly every time I pick her up from school, and nearly every time it happens, I about die from overwhelming amazement, wondering how it is I got to be this lucky, to have a little person like her in my life. And I'm so grateful to be her mommie.

Thursday, June 03, 2010

Letting My Buttons Be Pushed

Inner Thoughts for Next Time: "Ah, yes... Step back and recognize what's going on here - I know this feeling. Yes, my button is being pushed. Yup, you're pushing my buttons. Okay, now don't engage; just feel your response, but don't act on it. Just feel it and think about it, let it wash over you. Examine the push n' pull at play in this moment and the history involved. See it for what it is and then let it goooo."

Someday I'll get used to this - - I'll stop expecting to be given anything other than a contrary "No" response.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Duplos Jackpot!

So our baby girlie has recently discovered Lego Duplo blocks - - I knew it'd be just a matter of time! So yeah, she's likes them a lot... So this afternoon, while she was napping, I checked both and Target for Duplo sets ... and oh boy! A basic blocks set of 80 pieces is listed for $20 - - and a 'building set' of only 71 Duplo pieces is listed for $39-46!?! And a 95-piece set with a building plate is listed for $85?!?

IMPORTANT FACT: Anyone who knows anything at all about Legos or Duplos knows you need more than 80 pieces to make yourself a Duplos house!

Well, ten minutes ago I scored a Lot of 410 used Duplo blocks for $28.25 on eBay, thank you very much! CORRECTION: FOUR HUNDRED AND SEVENTY DUPLOS!

And when they get here, I'll throw 'em all into a hot bathtub with some ammonia cleanser and I'll soak 'em, and I'll scrub 'em, and I'll rinse 'em, and after they dry, I'll let her at 'em! And her big brother is coming for Memorial Day weekend --he hasn't been here since Easter!?!-- and I can only imagine the Duplo creations he'll make for her! WOO-HOO!

Sleepy Sweet Potato

My baby girlie is nearly dozing off in her high chair... although she won't say so, I think she's "all done."

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Why I Love Mah Honey-Man ~ Reason 53

Because he has the ability to step back from himself in order to measure the facts -to objectively weigh the value of our options- and he can come to a solid and sound determination, and he can not only accept it, but act on it, even if it's something he wouldn't necessarily want to do at first.

Happens to be one of the most valuable reasons I have to love and adore him (and it's one of the top reasons I married him!).

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Our Shining Star

Our lil' sweet potato has moved from the 'transitioning-into-toddlerhood' Tadpoles class to the 'FULL-BLOWN-TODDLING-EVERYWHERE' toddlers group, Stars!

BACKGROUND INFO: A month before the winter/spring school session was to end, May 7th, her Tadpoles head teacher had said that if our girlie wasn't walking by May 1st, they'd keep her in Tadpoles for the new summer session. Well, she was walking independently by April's end, so her head teacher decided she could move up into Stars with the rest of her classmates. But then the program director worried she was too young when compared to her Tadpole peers, as most of them are 5-7 months older than her, although she's the very same size as the oldest babe in the group. Nonetheless, they proposed that she remain in Tadpoles until June 1st, giving her more time to master her new biped skills. At the same time though, her head teacher voiced that our girlie might regress if she found herself surrounded by a bunch of new, non-walking Tadpoles...

MORE BACKGROUND INFO: As of this week, the majority of the kids who make up the current Stars class were Tadpoles just last week. So this past Monday they'd all moved on and up, ahead of our sweet potato, and she was the only one in her Tadpoles class to remain a Tadpole. But indeed, after all the walking kiddies left Tadpoles and the new crawling-only babies moved into Tadpoles, our girlie became SERIOUSLY and IMMEDIATELY bored with her Tadpoles classroom, with her new classmates, and she began monopolizing her teachers' time, whining a lot and demanding a lot of one-on-one reading time. More importantly, this past Monday and since then, remaining in Tadpoles, she almost altogether quit trying to walk as her primary mode of personal transportation - - She began to crawl again (unless she was with us at home) = NOT GOOD.

So her head teacher talked with the program director and they had our girlie visit the Stars classroom for 'free play' by late Tuesday afternoon, and yesterday they brought her to the Stars classroom during their snack time, and she was just fine with all the older kids, so it became official today - - she's now a Star.

Sooo, she was the second babe to arrive to the Stars classroom this morning, and she immediately recognized the first and only kiddo there, who had moved up from Tadpoles into this new classroom, and my lil' sweet potato, she shrieked with glee and she toddled right over and gave her playmate an enthusiastic pat-pat hug, nearly knocking her lil' friend over.

And right then and there, I melted into a big 'oh-my-darling-daughter-adoring' pile of uber vehclempted goo, right in front of her new Stars head teacher, who I had just met for the first time.

And now I'm off of work, about to go claim my lil' shining Star!

We Have a Puppy!

Last weekend, our baby sweet potato girlie began imitating a doggie, saying "woof, woof!" And this morning she added panting to her doggie imitation. I love it!

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Our Lil' Book Worm

Our baby sweet potato girl is a book worm! Her head teacher has confirmed she loves books and more so than any of her classmates. She LOVES "Circle Time," always eager to sit beside her classmates in a semi-circle for daily reading time.

Her definite very first favorite book was "Sounds" from Hinkler Books, part of their Baby's Firsts series. It simply features images of all sorts of things with the sound each makes written across the page bottom. She will still bring this book over, climbing into my lap, ready to hear me read the sounds.

Her second favorite book was a solid tie between Piggy Toe's "Ten Little Ladybugs" and Harper Festival's "Cow Moo Mee" - - she still loves them both, although only recently did she rediscover the "Ten Little Ladybugs," eager now to point out and identify all the different bugs and animals.

Her third favorite book is from Cartwheel Books, "It's Spring," by Samantha Berger. Our lil' sweet potato still really loves this book, nightly, and now points at each of the animals featured, trying each time to use the sign for birdies.

Her fourth favorite book is one of my very favorites - the illustrations are so darling - from Chronicle Books, "My Friends," by Taro Gomi.

Her fifth favorite, a well known classic, "Goodnight Moon" from Harper Festival. This book didn't hit her favorites list though until she was about 11 months old.

We have tons of books for her to read, including a number of great Priddy Books, and nearly a dozen from the fantastic Touchy-Feely board books series by Fiona Watts from Usborne Publishing, but all the aforementioned "Top 5 Favorites" have been the ones she wants read to her, over and over, sometimes each read repeatedly in one sitting.

Not until her first birthday, did she really add new titles to her Top 5 Favorites rotation. It should be noted that we haven't yet been able to trust her to handle paper-page books with care, so the majority of the books we read and give her are all board books... but she has, like, 30 or 40 of them now since her first birthday for which I'd encouraged people to give her board books ~ yay me! Lookin' out for my lil' book worm!

Sooo, her latest BIG BIG favorite that she wants read every night now (along with "Goodnight Moon" and "It's Spring") is a Sandra Boynton board book from Little Simon books, "The Going to Bed Book," given to her for her 1st birthday. She loves this book and will point to all the animals, and she will turn round and look up at me, wanting me to identify each of geanimals as she points to each of them, like the moose and the rhinoceros.

A recent new favorite is another Harper Festival pub, "Harry the Dirty Dog." She goes nuts pointing out all the doggies and birdies and trees and flowers and the butterflies and she just gets soooo excited. She doesn't really let me read this book though - - she wants to flips through the pages faster than I can read them.

Another new favorite is "The Paper Bag Princess" from Annick Press. I think it's the voices I use though to read it that she finds the most amusing - - she doesn't yet know/recognize/appreciate this lil' books fantastic message for young girls. I'm really looking forward to the day I can try to teach other similar lessons, especially important for today's growing girls.

Lastly, the book for which I'd written a blatant plug last week, "On the Night You Were Born," from Feiwel and Friends... It isn't yet on her favorites list, but it's getting close (due to repetition) and all the ladybugs on one of its pages near the book's end. Ha!

Monday, May 03, 2010

Why I Love Mah Honey-Man ~ Reason 52

Because he continues to argue with me about the merits of the band Rush, the subject up for discussion again due to a recent Tribeca Film Festival winner.

Him: "Ya gotta put a link to their website... (as he smacks me on the arm with his napkin) ..."Quit making fun of your husband. "

He leans over to see what I'm typing and then he tells me, "You can't post that until you add a link to the band. Go get it right now."

Me: "As if I would EVER post a link to anything RUSH-related on my blog!!!?!"

Him: "How dare you! They're gods among mere mortals."

He's now making me watch some trailer for a Rush documentary - - and I do this, why?
Because I love him...

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Signing Times n' Other Baby Milestones

Before I forget, I need to write this stuff down:

For her first notable sign, we're actually still trying to determine exactly what it means: She holds a pointed index finger upward, thumb extended out to the side, and then she waves her hand back and forth from the wrist, and does so very deliberately. She does this action most whenever the cats appear, or she sees a plane, and sometimes when she sees the angel boy-O's mommie, Wendy. It seems to mean 'look at that/them/her.'

Her 2nd recognizable sign was for 'more', pointing an index finger into the palm of her opposite hand... This is not what we taught her - - she learned this method at school.

3rd recognizable sign was for 'food/hungry,' inserting a baby index finger into her mouth, closing her lil' lips about her finger and then pulling her finger out of her mouth - - and she usually opens her eyes real big and wide when she does it = TOTALLY ADORABLE! We did not teach her this sign, but did have another approach, which she's never used. She came up with this on her own.

4th recognizable sign = the usual signing for 'milk'

5th/6th sign: She's trying reallllly hard to master her index-to-thumb pincher action, trying to sign 'bird'. She only began this effort a little over a week ago - - or at least that's when we finally caught on.

6th/5th sign: She's also trying reallllly hard to master the sign for airplane - - she LOVES airplanes!! I'd say kitties and airplanes are about tied right now. She always recognizes a plane's roar in the sky as they fly nearby or pass overhead when we're leaving her school, and she'll look around and point to the sky, and she can spot 'em like a lil' pro. For the last two weeks, she's been trying to use the sign for airplane whenever she sees one.

7th sign: This past week, she's been trying to use the sign for 'fish,' but it only looks like a casual one-swipe swap or low-waisted wave so far.

And tonight, for the first time, she put her palms together and opened them to sign 'book'!!! She was quite tickled when I squealed "BOOK" with delight!

She still refuses to use any kind of sign for 'drink - - she will only squawk and point vigorously in the direction of a glass, sippy cup, bottle, etc. Although at one point, we were convinced she was saying 'my bottle' in French and quite recognizably so.

Words she's speaking:

Update for her 1st word: Still no hard 'k' for book, but she says 'buh' all the time

Still 'Ba' most of the time, but now sometimes 'Ba ba' for bottle

'Bi-bi' for blanket or binky (NOTE: She only uses a binky at bedtime now or in the car.)

And exciting new behavior: Around Easter she began saying 'Gubba' - and over the last couple weeks, she seems to be using it to refer to her big brother, our angel boy-O, who she's been enthusiastically identifying in pictures for over 3 weeks, pointing him out with a lil' chubby baby index finger - - She first began pointing at his photos every time we head up the stairs and now, it also happens whenever we walk into her bedroom and turn on the lights - - there are two framed pictures of the two babes hung along the side of tall shelf that stands beside her light switch. And for the last week, if holding her in my arms while standing anywhere near the fridge, she about leaps from my arms in the direction of the fridge, wanting to point out every single picture of her brother posted on the freezer door (and there are 8 pictures of him!).

In the last two weeks or so, she also began to say 'kuh' for cat (no hard 'T'), and something much closer to dog, now a one-syllable 'duhg' with a realllly softly spoken 'g'.

And last week she began to point out images of cats/kitties, dogs, butterflies, ladybugs, birdies and frogs in her books.

She's realllly in love with the wooden creatures I've placed beneath the shelf that hangs above her diaper changing table, which she can look up and see while lying there (listed using my left to right, if facing the wall): butterfly, frog, ladybug and a dragonfly
She favors the ladybug and points to it first every time.

She has a light up ladybug, called the Twilight Ladybug (scroll down, down, down the linked page), and we call it the "starshine ladybug." Whenever she wants it, she'll point to the shelf where it's kept and will then point to the ceiling and back to the shelf. Smart lil' cookie, eh?

For over a month or more now, she'll point to her sweater or a jacket of hers, or full go on n' grab one, and she'll then point to the door that takes her out of the house. BTW, she loves the outdoors and loves to get out of the house! If she gets her hands on a jacket/sweater of hers and we won't/aren't going anywhere at that time, she'll start to squawk and will hold her jacket/sweater up to us as high as she can, sometimes waving it, insisting it's time to leave and now. She gets very excited whenever she gets her hands on her jackets/sweaters --very happy, very eager-- and she now hugs them and will then try to put them on by herself in her efforts to convince us she's ready to go-go!

She still a reallllly impatient eater. No change there. However, she now wants to feed herself ALL THE TIME. Only if she's ravenous, will she let me spoon feed her. Otherwise, she's totally hands on around mealtimes, and just last week, she began eating with a spoon without assistance! - - she's not real good at it yet, of course, but she loaded her spoon several times and the majority of it all made it inside her mouth.

I've been trying for several months to introduce her to the world of haircare. For a couple months now, she's been trying to brush her hair using a baby hairbrush (and with a dish scrubber just last night!), and she will also remove any hairclip I may put in her hair, immediately trying to return the clip to it's original position, but on her own, without my help. She gets VERY frustrated with her inability to make them stay, and again, she DOES NOT want my help for nuthin'! Sooo, no wearing of hairclips or bows yet --and she's never been a fan of those baby headband/bow thingies-- all of which is fine by me.

She grabs her toothbrush on her own, often without my reminding her, and she'll brush at her teeth and gums in the mornings, after bathtime, before bed, and any time she's in the shower.

And she's walking across entire rooms now, back and forth between walls. Over this past weekend, she just went for it... from no more than 5-6 unassisted steps a handful of times over the last two weeks, to 15 unassisted steps! 20 steps! and30! She's still very wobbly once upright and moving, and most of the time she winds up on all fours, crawling still, but she's about to become a full fledged biped! What I love is when she'll get her momentum really going and just before she gets too ahead of herself and loses it, she'll sometimes stop suddenly, standing still, wearing a huge, sheepish lil' grin on her face as she calms and regains full balance, and then she just explode forward, squealing with glee as she tries another go at it, falling sooner than later.

A The Most Wonderful Children's Book by Nancy Tillman

This one had me crying by the second page: "On The Night You Were Born"

If you have children, you should buy this book and stat ~ I read it aloud to my lil' sweet potato tonight and she looked up to stare at me in wonder when my fat tears plopped down upon her yummy lil' chubby baby arm ~ and she gave me a hug.

Thank you again, soooo much, Leslie!
Mmmwah! oxoxo

Loving Kurt's Solo


Lovin' Akeelah and the Bee!

This movie is sooo going on our 'kids must watch this' list for the angel boy-O and our lil' sweet potato!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

I Need to Write This Stuff Down!

Man, there's so much going on with this baby girl of mine! I can't keep up! - - and haven't been for months now. I'm soooo behind on all the bloggin I've wanted to post. Ahhh, gotta go - - baby's waking and in less than 30 seconds, screaming for attention!

Monday, April 19, 2010

No Napping, Not Today

With all this building excitement over the last few days, with our sweet potato on the cusp of establishing full throttle, self-motorized biped action, today she altogether refused to take any sort of nap, not even a 15 minute snoozer! Yeah. NO NAP! And she's still sick, yet seems to think she should be training for a walking-babies marathon. She was at home with her daddy and it was non-stop all day long, and NO NAP.

She crashed by 5:30pm and she slept until 6am!

Steppin' it Up!

Last Wednesday, our baby sweet potato's head teacher had written on her daily sheet for the day that our girlie had taken FIVE unassisted steps...

Well, my honey-man just called me at work from home and confirmed more of the same: Outside, playing in our back patio area, she walked across her playmat from her crafts table, over to the wicker loveseat! FIVE WHOLE UNASSISTED STEPS!

She's on her way to walkin' and fast! Woo-hoo!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Why I Love Mah Honey-Man ~ Reason 51

Between yesterday and today, my wonderful, wonderful, OH-SO freakin' wonderful, and uber generous honey-man allowed me to acquire an extra 9 hours of sleep - - that's like gaining an entire extra night's sleep over two days! I slept in until 9am yesterday, and this morning, slept in again, this time until 9:30am, and this afternoon, I napped from noon until 2:30pm.

Mind you, I still feel dreadful, with this super snotty congested cold I've got, but I'm a well-rested dreadful - - I can't imagine how I'd feel right now if I hadn't of gotten all the extra shut-eye. (shaking my head in disbelief) Kinda scary to imagine, really.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Why I Love Mah Honey-Man ~ Reason 50

We had exactly two solid snotty-free weeks for our baby sweet potato until last night. I picked her up from her school yesterday and noticed two of her lil' playmates had lil' greenie rivers flowing from their noseys, so I knew it'd just be a matter of time, but I didn't think it'd be so soon! So I'm at home today, caring for my lil' snot ball.

She had such a hard time breathing last night, around midnight we had to set her up on the floor of her bedroom, sitting upright in one of her old baby swings, and my honey-man --her darling, sweet daddy-- he slept on her bedroom floor, laying right beside her.

He is such a wonderful, wonderful daddy and we're so very lucky to have him.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Why I Love Mah Honey-Man ~ Reason 49

Because he was up at 5:15 this morning and he made us fresh coffee before we walked out the door with our girlie babe in tow at 5:40am, just in time for us to be on location at 6am to help with set up for this year's Walk MS event. And he made our lunches last night as well, in preparation for our drive after the MS event to St. George, UT.

And we got home not long ago and it was such a loooong and good day spent together.

Tuesday, April 06, 2010


After work today, after I'd picked up our baby sweet potato girlie from her school, we met my honey-man for dinner somewhere nearby. For the past two months now, this has been our Tuesday night ritual, however, what happened once we got home, not exactly so.

I was home with the girlie by 5:40pm, and although I really should have given her nothing more than a quickie dip in the kitchen sink, we lazed around and took our sweet time in the tub for nearly an hour. And we read 5 books instead of 3 (and I read 2 of the 5 books twice). And instead of laying her down in her crib semi-awake before she'd totally doze off in my arms, I rocked her to sleep and held her for at least a half hour before finally laying her down in her crib come 7:30pm. I just wanted more time.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Spring Break: Can I Pout?

In two hours' time, I've seen only 3 people here = the office is dead and I'm feeling a bit pouty about having to be here. Nevermind that I have loads of work to catch up on - - I just wanna go home and play with my baby sweet potato girlie! *sigh*

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Friday, March 26, 2010

Baby Sweet Potato Girlie Turns a Year Old

Can't believe THIS MOMENT was a year ago...

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Makin' Cuppycakes for Mah Sweet Potato Girlie

Today's my furlough day for the month of March - - and it's the day before my daughter's FIRST BIRTHDAY!?!? - - I just cannot believe she's gunna be a year old tomorrow!? Holy Hannah!!! - - how the heck did that happen so freakin' fast, someone please tell me??!?

My honey-man has said this to me several times before, but this past year, it's really taken on greater meaning for me: One's concept of time completely changes once you have children.

Before I had my lil' sweet potato, a single day could drag on and on - - a week could feel like an eternity. I have been able to distinguish how time is, indeed, altered whenever we have the angel boy-O with us, here in Vegas and before, when I'd see him in California - - Here and gone is always how it feels, even during the summers when we have him for a few solid weeks. The time just flies by. And now? It's every day! Every week! Every month! Here and gone! It's just absolutely unbelievable to me that an entire year has flown by since our girlie came out and into the world!

And man, can I say I had NO IDEA how absolutely freakin' fantastic she'd be? - - She totally rocks my world, my baby girl, oh yes, she does!!! She is the coolest lil' thing ~ And the last couple of weeks have been phenomenal! She's just flying past developmental milestones, and each and every day, she does something new, and she's always showing us what a smart lil' cookie she is. And she's a total stinker too! Boy, she sure likes to test things out, particularly mommie's patience! I love it though - - I totally love the gleam in her eye as she watches my growing frown as she chooses which food item she will next hold over the edge of her highchair tray, to release it and let it fall to the floor... she doesn't even watch any of it fall --she watches ME and my face to see how I'll respond! I love bein' her mommie and although it's been kicking mah butt, man, my life is forever changed. I knew this would be the case, intellectually I knew, but wow, boy did I underestimate the transformation.

I'm making cupcakes right now to bring to her classmates and teachers tomorrow. Honestly, I don't think I could possibly be any happier right now in this very moment (unless I were 10 lbs lighter) - - yeah, I'm home on a furlough day, no less, and the economy really sucks, and there's LOADS of uncertainty ahead for all of us, and yeah, there are horrendous things happening this very minute all over the world; there's a gazillion valid complaints worth mentioning as part of this world and the reality that is life, but I'm way, way, waaaay too delighted with the 'cherry chip' cupcakes I'm baking to simply honor my baby's arrival into this world 364 days ago, to celebrate her and her first birthday. I'm all vehclempted.