Wednesday, May 30, 2012

A Jam-Packed Weekend

This weekend was full to the brim of activities and family and food and fun.

Saturday morning, Michael, June and I decided we had to do something outdoors because of the awesome weather. Normally this time of year is plagued by already 100+ degree temps, so the 85' was very welcome. We went to to zoo and had a great time wandering around at our own pace. 

Saturday night the whole family headed up to my parents' house to have dinner and start off the weekend right. If you know me, you know that this must involve a sweet treat and it did. In the form of s'mores over a fire pit. 
Sunday morning the men all golfed, so us girls made a day of it. Breakfast, the park, shopping and then naps!


 Sunday night, JP, Michael went out to the bar/club scene and I promptly learned that I am out of practice. That's a blog for another day, though.

 We came back to our house on Monday to try to recoup before the workweek. But not before some playing with Papa!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Consumer Reports Consumed

Early Monday morning, when most of us would rather have been asleep, June decided to get in some light early reading.

Consumer Reports might not seem like thrilling read to some, but both June and her Papaw Fred love it!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Ant Invasion

I don't know about you, but I don't find anything more romantic than spending your Monday night murdering hundreds of ants in your bathroom next to your life partner.

We've been taken over, y'all. And by "taken over" I mean that it was actually quite manageable and also that our entire bathroom floor is now covered in blue painter's tape in hope of keeping the minions of Satan at bay. Please don't think we live in squalor.

Ants inspire in me a certain paranoia, you see. Because you kill one, but there are at least 7 more out of sight that are still at large. "I think...I think they're coming from inside my Kindle!" I kid you not, I spent about a month reading my Kindle while it was inside an airtight gallon-sized ziplock bag because I had to be sure. I was one more ant away from sending that Kindle off to have it examined and dismantled to find what I can only imagine is a disturbing ant colony embedded in the little wires and chip technology of my gadget.

So we found a few ants crawling around the bathroom. We knew they might be coming out of a little spot where the grout of our tile floor had sort of cracked away from the wall/shower. The next day there were more and I told Michael we had to do something. He set out little ant traps that are supposed to be filled with poisoned ant food. The problem, however, is that the ants just see it as food. So when I went back to check on the A.S.S (Ant Sortie Status), it was utter chaos.

Hundreds upon hundreds of ants, swarming, roiling, clickering away with their billion legs. The ASS was out of control. After I projectile vomitted, I GTFO'd and calmly told Michael that our bathroom scene was "horrific."

In response to the not-very-effective strategy of the night before - to bop each individual ant - I decided to try something new. We wrapped our fingers in painter's tape, sticky side out, and stuck those bastards. We each worked the periphery until there was no other choice but to dive in, disrupt the ant traps and deal with the outpouring of frickin' ants from those cesspools.

It was cathartic, in a way, being able to cuss out a stream of consciousness.

I'll spare you the details, but let's say that our many pieces of tape looked like the Biore strip of someone who had done a caviar face mask.

We have a guy coming to fix it. Until then I will sit up in bed, rocking back and forth and sending accusatory glances toward my Kindle.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Breaching the Barricade

I was baking a peach pie this morning - finally getting around to using the peaches from Schnepf Farms - and I broke my glass pie plate. While I tried to gather up the 5 billion shards of glass that had somehow rounded corners into every nook and cranny of my kitchen, Michael barricaded the area off so June couldn't wander in.

Well, when Michael came into the kitchen to refresh his coffee, we looked over to see this:
Caught in the act!

She obviously feels very guilty.

She took the rearrangement of furniture as a challenge/invitation to play for the rest of the morning.

And this was all before 8 am! (Sometimes I look forward to the her teenage years of sleeping past 6 am...and then I remember everything else about teenage years.)

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Mother's Day on the Farm

After waking up very early on Mother's Day (June was so excited to celebrate, I'm sure), a cup of coffee and opening cards and gifts, our little family headed to Schnepf Farms to enjoy the Peach Festival. JP and Kai met us there bright and early and we enjoyed some fairly comfortable weather before it got too hot. 

Let me tell you, this place has SO MUCH to see and do and explore. We're already planning on coming back in the fall when the weather is cooler and we'd be able to spend more time wandering. First we hung out in the kid area. There was a coop with a few beautiful peacocks in it.

There was a track made of bales of hay that Kai loved riding through.
And all kinds of things for June to climb up and crawl through and slide down.

Man, June these days! Basically she is little Miss Independent Wiggly Wander Woman. She didn't want to be held at all, she wanted to walk but didn't want to hold our hands, so she would just charge off into the crowd and leave us to scramble after her.

My boss and her husband also happened to go to Schnepf on Sunday! We did quite a few things as a group, including riding the train little train over the grounds and through the orchard.

(In the tunnel)

After a long wait in line, we got our pancakes, peaches and sausage. Everything was delicious!
We also took a hayride, which is the usual mode of transportation to get out to the orchard to pick your own peaches. By the time this rolled around, though, it was getting hot and we were more in the mood to just keep riding. So we stayed on and I managed to take about a billion pictures of June being so adorable.

The others went off to ride some roller coasters but June doesn't quite meet the height requirement, so we headed off to the petting zoo.

It was such, such a wonderful day. I am so happy to be a mom, to be able to celebrate this day with June and her dad. 

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Play Date

Whenever June and Matteo get together, we parents love watching them interact and play. 
Of course half of the get together is Michael chasing after June while Lynds and I catch up on the latest goings on.
 June really loved going outside and playing on Matteo's climbing toy and slide in the backyard. She wanted to climb up the slide, scoot around and then slide back down it...over and over again.
And many a scone was consumed. I was feeling the call of baking and I answered in the form of blackberry and strawberry scones. I used this Alton Brown recipe and just folded in a handful of fresh strawberry pieces to half the dough and blackberry to the other half. They were delicious!
And June didn't seem to think they were too bad either!

Sunday, May 13, 2012

A Mom to Me

A mom to me means 40 minute rides to soccer practice four nights a week.

A mom to me means going to your daughter's bedroom each night after she yells "I'M READY" through the house at bedtime to have some talk time before turning in...from an age of I-don't-remember 'til she leaves for college.

A mom to me means driving to Casa Grande to watch her daughter compete in a track meet where the total time of her four events was something like 9 minutes.

A mom to me means answering with a resounding "Yes" when your daughter calls and says, "I'm going on a trail ride in Utah, YOU IN?"

A mom to me means developing a secret cheer that involves you, your young daughter and her stuffed bear.

A mom to me means knowing favorite foods, the status of a crush, the contents of her book and heart.

Every day I learn a little more about what it means to be a mom to June. I'm glad I have a good example to follow.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Feeding Frenzy

Right now the narration of June’s mind sounds something like this:


It’s hilarious and charming until you realize it’s absolutely terrible.

Feeding has become a struggle. If we give her a pile of fruit or puffs or anything she will shove them into her mouth using two hands then chew with a loud “numnumnum” sound. If we try to slow her down and only give her a few bites at a time, she gets mad and sometimes ends up in frustrated crying. I try to point out that she does actually have some pieces still available for her consumption and she pounces on them with an excited “ooh!”

The general opinion I’ve gotten about amounts of food to give boils down to: they’ll eat however much they want to eat. The lactation consultant, Dr. Sears, the Pediatrician, all when asked, basically said that she’ll stop eating when she’s full. She does not stop eating when she’s full. We feed her. And feed her and feed her and keep giving her more food and still we get “More?” I don’t…know what I’m supposed to do? Do I just feel her until she rolls away? Do I just suck it up and cut her off at a certain point and endure the wailing that comes after we cheerily cry, “All done!”?

After stuffing herself on Greek yogurt and Cheerios and bananas, I set her down to wander the kitchen while we finish getting ready for work. She spied me putting crackers into a baggie and, “More?” She pointed to the Wheat Thins and then repeated “More?” with the accompanying sign. Wailing.

We can’t take her to the grocery store anymore. Every single thing we put into the cart is the object of her desire. Michael once placed the bananas in her lap to pacify her and then looked down to see her disgusted face and tooth marks in the peel. Even random things on the shelves are pointed at and asked for. “More?” Sign for more. “More?”

*Sigh* What am I going to do with my little pudgemeister? My chunkawunka? My tubbs?

Can you see why it was important to me to feed her good foods? Think if she was eating this much of all the vanilla pudding and sugar pretzels and chips and queso?! 

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

June Speaks

Just now, June was playing with me in the living room. She abruptly walked into the kitchen and said to Michael, "Wa-wa!"

He gave her the sippy cup of water, she turned with it and walked back into the living room while sipping merrily away.

June babbles a ton, she says "more" when she wants more, "puppy" and "duck" when she sees them. For "moon" she says "boomboom," so it's not that this is her first word association. It's just, I don't know, I feel like this was a first. The first time she used a word to get what she wanted when her desire was out of context. It was like her first question.


The above was written on Sunday afternoon. Since then June has gone into the kitchen several times asking for Wa-wa.

She also learned the pose for "I don't know," which is what we see all the time around here. When we ask her where her ears are, when I ask her where Daddy is, or whenever I say "I don't know" I see this:
She thinks it's quite clever and grins after she does it. 

She's so interesting, you know? She has a personality. She throws little tantrums which aren't so fun but I still find it fascinating and a little touching to know what moves her so. (The biggest culprits are not having "more" of a food to give her, having to stop playing and wiping her face.)

Every day it seems we get to uncover a little of her self, what makes her uniquely her. It makes me feel very lucky. 

Saturday, May 5, 2012

We have become THOSE parents

To our great dismay, we have become the type of parents we never thought we'd be.

June moved up to the next classroom in school - the toddler room. We received a lovely note detailing the "few changes" to June's routine, which then listed about a million ways that June is no longer a baby and is in fact a fully grown adult and will be doing her own taxes and doesn't need me anymore...

Really, it was more like: one nap a day, sleep on cots instead of cribs, organized activities and they provide all food. When I first read that I got pretty excited because it meant us not having to stress about thinking up and preparing one lunch and two snacks for June every day.

Then, depending on your outlook, we either became neurotic helicopter parents or made a responsible parenting decision that was right for us. We looked at the menu, had a talk and decided we weren't thrilled about it. We went through a bit of a process trying to get them to let us bring our own food again, but alas, we're back to preparing little meals for June every night.

The thing is, June likes eating whole foods. Protein and vegetables and fruit and grains. I know that there might come a time when she only wants to eat chicken nuggets and chips, but I want to put that off until it's no longer possible not to. I figure that as long as she enjoys eating this way, we should encourage it. Maybe she'll grow up liking Brussels sprouts?

We're not least I don't think so. We don't insist on organic food. I'm not looking up the glycemic index when I prepare her meals. Of course we let her eat goldfish crackers and have a bite of our sweet treats. I'm just...not really interested in feeding her meals out of a box all day every day. Not yet, not now, not when she'll eat almost anything you set in front of leafys included.

Friday, May 4, 2012

The Trip Away

After my whole post dedicated to how anxious I was about leaving June, I figured I could give a little update to let you know how it went. 

Truly the anticipation was the worst part. This might sound bad, but I didn't really have a hard time going from "June, do you want some milk? Milk?" to "GRAB ME A GLASS OF PINOT AT THE BAR!"

I brought my breast pump and pumped twice a day, which I think brought the whole group closer as we bonded with the steady background noise of "ruh-roh, ruh-roh." I Skyped with June a couple of times and Michael sent a bunch of pictures of what she was up to. They did great together, going to the library, the park and the Children's Museum. And it was so fun to come home and have June hurry over to give me a hug and a kiss.

Anyway, I had such a great time with my friends. I really enjoyed the time I had to relax, have a good time and catch up with the girls. 

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Annie and Sam's Wedding!

Last weekend I took my first trip away from June and went to San Diego to go to a friend's wedding. Annie, one of my best friends from my trip to New Zealand, was marrying Sam and five of us NZ girls went to watch them tie the knot!
 It was a beach wedding - the first true beach wedding I've ever been to! Complete with a spot to leave our shoes, a warm April sun and cool ocean breeze. We even got to sneak a picture with the groom before the ceremony.
 Annie and Sam had their adorable daughter Kai at the wedding. She was such a doll...and I'm sure you can imagine that I - missing June sorely - stared at her throughout the ceremony, adoring her antics and generally just wanting to squeeze her.

 The Mr. and Mrs.!

Annie's kickin' sparkly Tom's:
 And finally, some pictures of us NZ girls having a good time and goofing around on the beach:

 As much fun as we had, we did have one serious mission to accomplish. We had a picture that we took on the first day we arrived in New Zealand. Out of the group of 42 people, the six of us just happened to take a shot together, and that group ended up being the six of us that got along so well. So we endeavored to recreate that picture - same order and everything - on this beach six years later. Here are the results!

I love it!