Thursday, May 29, 2008

here comes the son (in-law)

Happy Birthday, Jenner!!

Luciya's boyfriend, Jenner - the son of our dear Oregon friends Trisha and Colby - is a year old today!

He was born 3 1/2 weeks early, forty days after Luciya. He has grown into such a jolly, handsome, strong little boy. To think that when he was born, we weighed just over five pounds!

And here he is today, at a year old:

Seriously, one of the happiest babies I've ever met.

Jenner and Luciya have had the opportunity to meet each other quite a few times. First, when they were both inside their mommies' tummies. Then, when Luciya was outside and Jenner was still in:

And then when he came to visit us in Idaho when he was just eight weeks old:

And last Labor Day weekend, when they were three and four months old:

And at Halloween:

And earlier this month, when Luciya and I went to Portland for Uncle Colby's surprise birthday party!

Jenner, we love you so much and are so happy you and Luciya are going to grow up together.

May you enjoy a beautiful, celebrated day!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

so there really is no such thing as a vurple filver.

Today's random fact: no word in the English language rhymes with orange, month, silver, or purple.

So there you have it.

Monday, May 26, 2008

eLLe - 13 months

Dear Luciya,

Today you are one year, one month, one week, and one day old.

Your second year of life seems to be suiting you - er, dressing you? - quite nicely.

You still only have those two little teeth, which didn't come in until your eleventh month, in the bottom of your mouth. We've begun brushing them at bath time, with the smallest amount of toothpaste. You dig it. You open wide when you see the tiny toothbrush coming, and afterwards you like to give the rest of your mouth a good once-over all by yourself (read: sucking the bristles for a while).

You are a sweet little summertime weed; all of you is growing. Even your hair. I finally had to bite the bullet a few days ago and cut your bangs. Pretty cute, though, huh? I saved the tiny lock (of course), and put it in your baby book.

Oh, Luciya.

You make me laugh. And lately, whenever someone else is laughing, you want to laugh, too, so then the other person wants to keep laughing so you'll keep laughing, and, well.... ha ha ha! You're a funny little Butter Face.

You're a little ham, too, and you looooove to dance. You'll hear anything with a beat, even an ad for a car dealership on the radio, and you bob your head and groove along in the car seat. If you happen to be standing, you bounce your knees up and down and shake your little bootie. It's like you can't resist it. Your grandad and I took you to the Saturday market a couple weekends ago and there was a small band (well, one guy on the keyboard and one guy on the drums) and you danced and danced in front of them until you drew a small crowd. Seriously, an older couple later sought us out just to meet you, ask about you, and even pick you up. You little charmer, you.

We've been getting used to some glorious weather lately, seventy degree days and all. So I went ahead and felt optimistic the other day as we got ready for our 9:00 a.m. Stroller Strides class, and I dressed you in a cute little top and capri jeans. Well. Naturally when we got to the park the blustery winds dideth blow, and the sky threatened us with heavy clouds. And, naturally, I had cleaned out the back of the car the day before, which had held no less than five of your jackets. So we borrowed a little blue vest from a fellow mom's two year old boy, and I managed to find a pink leopard-print long sleeved shirt, some too-small green fleece pajama pants, and a droopy striped beanie in the car. For the rest of the day, you were affectionately referred to (by me) as Hobo Jane:

The nice weather has thankfully returned, and you and I have been spending much of our days out-of-doors. We go on bike rides (loving the bike seat and helmet!), play in he parks (loving the slides!), and survey the land. A few days ago I brought a large comforter out onto the lawn, and before I had even finished fluffing it you toddled onto it, turned around, plopped on to your bottom and then to your back, where you lay staring at the leaves of the apple trees and pointing out the little green movements. Since that day I've brought the blanket out a few more times, and each time you take the opportunity to do the same thing: immediately flop onto your back and stare at the green leaves against the blue sky.

It's amazing how rapidly you're growing and developing. You've started talking! Well, kind of. When you wave bye-bye you puff out a whisper of "buh -buh." You said "duck" one day, and it excited us so much we try to find all the books that have a picture of a duck in them (and there are A LOT, let me tell you!), and we try to get you to say it again. Can we count it as your first word if you've only really said it once?

You're so curious. The world is your oyster, and your chubby hands are quite adept at prying open the shell. You've discovered a low kitchen cupboard that houses the plastic silverware and cups, and it drives your daddy crazy how quickly you can spread these things all over the floor to make a mess. (I personally think it's kinda cute, and the fact that you like stacking and re-stacking the cups is supposed to be good for your sensory-motor skills. Or something. Right?) You go crazy for a cell phone to open, shut, and speed dial grandma on, and your daddy and I always have one of ours on hand for your not-uncommon shriek fests. Yes, the screams continue, often piercing and always unwelcome, but I tell myself that it's got to be frustrating when you want to talk, you try to talk, everyone else is talking, but you just can't talk. Huh, baby girl. That's right. Hush now. No, really. Shhhhh.....

Since you've been in your big girl room you've been sleeping like a champ. You are napping once a day, and that's great, because it's a 2 1/2-to-3 hour nap (usually 11:00 - 1:30/2:00). And at night? Twelve, thirteen hours SOLID. Straight. I've had to wake you up on more than one occasion, and I've also had to leave you with your daddy in the morning when I've gone to teach Stroller Strides, because you were still snoozing at 8:15, when I had to leave the house. You go down right at 7:00, no fussing, ready and sleepy-eyed. The other night, however, you fussed for quite a while and when I eventually went in to check on you (for I always check on you, and probably always will, so there), this is exactly how I found you - upside down, with your tiny foot through the slats of the crib and your baby on your chest.

Sometimes as I watch you sleeping so softly in your crib I marvel at how big you have gotten. You are long and strong. Your legs have over the arm of the rocking chair at night as we snuggle before bedtime. (I am still putting you down with a bottle of milk, even though Dr. Angie really wants you to move to sippy cups exclusively. We're working on it, and you're doing well. But how will I put you down each evening without some warm milk in the rocking chair? I can't think of it.) Tonight I bent down to inhale you as we rocked. Your long, fine hair, still damp from your bath, smelled faintly of your Baby Bee shampoo. Your thick eyelashes fluttered over your smooth, chubby cheeks. You sighed, content. Oh, how I treasure these times.

I love you, Luciya!


Sunday, May 25, 2008

-EY it is!

Thanks for voting on the pup's name, everyone. For a while there, it was a close race between Harley and Harlee. Then my friend Daina from Maui wrote in her vote of Harley, so the deal's been sealed.  With Daina's vote, and Ophelia's write-in of Harly, we got a total of 13 votes. My first reaction was, wow - lucky number! My second reaction was, thirteen people have read this blog? Hot damn, I'm almost as popular as my inspiration, Dooce! Maybe I could start raking in an esimated $40K in ad revenues each month! And then I thought, there's no way there are thirteen people out there reading this. Mom, did you vote three times?!

Anyway, Harley is... Harley. It fits. We like it. She's filling out every day, becoming a chunky puffy fluffer - all round and fuzzy. She is a literal shadow, and it's hard to take two steps sometimes without tripping over her super excited little body. She loves her pen in the basement and has been sleeping darn near through the night without a single potty incident! She and Mila have the cutest relationship ever - Mila has become very maternal. I'm going to try and capture some of their play on video so all thirteen of you can see it.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

because things have been pretty dull around here

This Mother's Day, I got breakfast in bed, for the first time ever. It was as fabulous as I could have imagined, complete with a bouquet of flowers and crisp pepper bacon with the fat trimmed off (thanks, honey!).

I got special treatment because I'm a Mom (hooray!), and what (other) better way to celebrate being a mom than adopting another child?

Met Harley Davidson.

Harley is a six-week-old Border Collie-Australian Shepherd mix (or Border-Aussie) who was a complete spur-of-the-moment purchase by John off the back of a farmer's truck at the Sportsman's Warehouse parking lot to be the newest addition to our little family.

She is a perfect puppy: all fluffy-puffer and puffy-fluffer, with a white coat and gray patches, with blue spots in those patches (to match her pretty blue eyes). Her nose is a mottled pink and black. Her teeth are tiny and pointy and want to bite into everything.

We've been saying for quite a while that Mila needs a friend to roam the property with, and though we've gone to the pound a couple times and wishy-washed the idea at least a thousand times more, it seemed fate came knocking on Mother's Day and now Mila has a little sister to gently nuzzle and sniff, all the while thankful for the extra treats and attention she's been getting (preserving the alpha-dog thing, you know).

So yeah, we have a new puppy. A brand-spankin'-new, fresh-off-the-teat-and-a-little-confused puppy. She's nothing less than adorable, nothing less than a completely needy new little being.

We're crate training, which is hailed as the best method of raising a new pooch, and so far it seems to be successful. Okay, we've brought her in to bed with us the past two nights at about 5:00 a.m. because the mewling from the family room kennel completely disrupts our sleep, and I know that's a no-no, but just this evening I placed her in there after her outside dinner poop and she hasn't made a peep. And she's only pooped inside twice. And peed once.

Welcome to our home, Harley. I have no doubt you will be a wonderful addition. And the extra attention you require? No problem. We don't have anything on our plates besides raising a toddler, starting up two new businesses, planning a wedding, teaching Stroller Strides (me), working nights (John), paying bills, caring for an acre property (and its home), and - oh, yeah - watching over your big sister, Mila. But hopefully she'll teach you well and you'll turn in to a sweet, mellow, well-behaved lovey-dove of a dog-daughter, just like she is.


By the way, I could use some help with the spelling of her name. We know her name is Har(ley), but is that too masculine? Should we write it out some other way? This is a HUGE decision, okay?! (See the poll at right.)

Friday, May 9, 2008

summer tease makes me feel fine


Who loves her new bike seat and helmet?

I know I thought Spring was just around the corner about 2 months ago, and it did a great job of fooling us on a few occasions (case in point:),

... but I think it's really here!

Check out this delicious tree in the front yard.

And I wish you could check out the lovely lingering twilights and the constant birdsong. Watch the birds make a nest in the little wooden house on the sycamore. See how lush and green the backyard grass is. Go without a onesie under your clothes for the first time ever.

This seasons thing is pretty cool, really. I won't say that I don't miss Maui, because I do. What I will say is that SEASONS ARE AMAZING! I mean, on Maui there is really little difference between, say, July and November. But here? You enter completely different worlds. Not to mention the flow of December into May. Was it really only five months ago that the heaters were cranking and we had to de-ice the front walk?

This was what the backyard thermometer read last Monday:

So we took a bike ride (Luciya's first!) all along the river into downtown, grabbed some lunch, and came back to the yard for some naked time in the sprinklers.

I know I've said I love the autumn and the winter, but Man, I am wiggly with summertime anticipation.

Dum-da-da-dooooo....... Hear ye, hear ye... Spring is here!!