Saturday, July 30, 2011

Saturday Morning Scene

Wanna link up?

1. Take a picture of your Saturday Morning Scene.
2. Blog about it.
3. Grab the button and add it to your post.
4. Add your (direct) link to the linky at the bottom.
5. Jump around and see what everyone's up to!

(Links that do not go to SMS will be deleted.)
Saturday Morning Scene

(Having trouble grabbing the button? Try highlighting the link, using "ctrl C" to copy & "ctrl V" to paste.)

Friday, July 29, 2011

A friday afternoon post. Wicka-what?

I'm having one of those heart-burst-it's-so-full moments RIGHT this second.

So much so that I just have to write because its practically spilling out of my pours. I mean, if I'm being honest, these moments/days don't come enough. I have no idea why, but lately it just hasn't been a rainbows & butterflies-type-feel around here. 

But, that needs to change. And it's starting with today. 

Ohmygosh YOU GUYS. Today is such a great day. 

First of all, I'm sure I'll get eye rolls because I'm mentioning it yet again, but--I am so freaking happy about the weight that I've lost. I've spent way too much of my life being uncomfortable with my weight. I cannot tell you how freeing it is to just feel so much better about myself. I mean, truly. When I was heavier and I'd read blogs about people who lost weight, I was always secretly jealous and so badly wishing it could be more. But, I'd let myself get too focused on the END result that it would literally stump me and trip me up from ever making the p.r.o.c.e.s.s. or the steps.

And this time? On January 3rd, 2011 I made a decision to take it one itty-bitty step at a time. I didn't look at big goals. I did small, shorter-term goals. Which ultimately led me to where I am today.

Down 43.5lbs. FOURTY-THREE. I am a mere 3.5lbs away from my (final) goal weight. Do you know how good that feels? I mean, so much so that I kind of want to shout from the rooftops.

Even *I* didn't really think I could do it. But yet? I did. And I'm just proud of myself. That's a hell of a lot of weight, and I just feel so much healthier. I'm equally (maybe even more so) proud of my sister, Susan and oh so thankful for having her by my side through this process. She's lost well over 40lbs, too! I mean, hello, weight watchers---Do you need any sisters commercials? Because we are SO your girls.

Here I am today, down 43.5lbs since January.
And you know what? You all have been a huge blessing and encouragement to me through this entire process. TRULY. When I think about it, I kind of get a little weepy and emotional because a lot of you have truly encouraged me and spurred me on in so many ways. 

Your kind tweets, emails, and comments--all of it has played a part in my weight loss journey and I mean it. It's been both motivating and uplifting, and I will always, always, always do my best to pay it forward in that regards. 

Smooshy hugs all around. Mean it.

Wow, this totally wasn't meant to be all about my weight loss, because I kind of swore I wouldn't post much more about it until I hit my final goal,, it happens.

I just feel full. My heart is full, in so many ways. I'm just grateful for this life I have, and my family, my husband, my sweet daughter, and my church. There are things I could let bring me down, but today? I'm not gonna let myself go there. I like this feeling, and...I'm happy. 


So how's that for a random Friday afternoon post? Two posts in one day--what is the world coming to? :)

Friday Fragments.

This week flew by. Flew right on freakin' by. I'm cool with it--not complaining.

So, I went out last night. We had one of those nights where Emeline went to bed at 6:30pm. Yea, one of those nights. Meaning that our day yesterday? Was a long one. Anyway. Right after she went to bed, I handed the monitor to Declan and said, "I'm going out". I met up with my sister and we just sat at Panera, for a few hours, and talked. No baby to feed, or entertain, or interrupt my thoughts or take my attention--I was just me. And it was nice. I need to do that more. 

I freaking love my kid to death. Everyone knows that. But I don't get out enough without her, and sometimes I just need it. So it felt awesome to just be out childless and it's amazing what it does for me. Silly, but true.


Last week I mentioned the possibility of Declan and I going away for some mini-vacation type thing. Well, we won't be doing St. Lucia (for lots of reasons, but I do appreciate all your feedback-thanks!)--but, we are still totally trying to make something else work. It will only be a 4'ish day trip, and definitely without-child, but we will totally make it worth our while. When I know more details about what/when we decide, I'll share. For now they are just serious thoughts and the planning is being worked out. I hope, I hope, I hope it goes as planned, but we'll see.


She's obsessed with my water cup. Obsessed. She sees it, and she instantly says "MMMMMmmmm!!" I have to admit, I secretly love how much she loves water. It's probably because we don't give her juice, but the girl thinks water is a treat, and its hysterical. I kind of wish I felt that way about water. It feels like it's a chore to drink it.

So on that note, some photos. (Shocked much?)

She takes this water-drinking thing serious. Look at that face.

Oh, you know, Ma--just blogging.
Seriously, when did my baby get so huge? Sigh. 

Have an awesome weekend!!

[SMS will be up tomorrow. See you then!]

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Take heart.

I'm not typically one to post music or videos or anything, but this one spoke to me this morning so I thought I'd share it with you.

"So take heart, let His love lead us through the night.
 Hold onto hope and take courage again."

I just know this message was something I needed to hear this morning, and maybe one of you need, too. 

Love you all-happy thursday!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Chalk for my art teacher heart.

Even though I resigned from my technical career as an art teacher, it'll always be within me. I love, love, love to create with kids. I mean, let's admit it---it takes an odd special person to want to paint with classroom full of 1st graders. Hello? MESS.

Although I did let the mess and stress of it get to me at times, I still really liked it. Mainly though? Seeing kids just come alive when they could "make" something so beautiful, or unique, or whatever. It was so...nice. In the midst of stressful school days I liked that they could come to my classroom and let their imagine run wild. It's such a good outlet for them.

Anyway. Tangent like whoa. 

I was at the craft store the other day and decided to pick up some sidewalk chalk. I mean, it seems like we're getting to the point where I can start inserting some of these fun activities into our day, so I decided to try it. 

Actually, we decided to draw on our deck instead of the driveway and it still worked. It was definitely a bright spot in my day seeing my girl make some of her first marks on the world. You know, I've done all the schooling, the research, I know all about the stages of childrens development as related to art and abilities--but still. It was way cooler playing with my own know, making art.

Even Mac joined in.

She lost a shoe in the process. Chalking the deck is rough, yo.

I welcome many more artful, mess-making experiences with open arms. 


Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Make your own Favicon. A tutorial of sorts.

Yesterday I was with my sister and I was talking to her about how I finally changed my favicon. I know, riveting stuff. She mentioned it might be nice to do a tutorial on how simple it is to change yours. Some of you may know what a favicon is, and some of you? May have absolutely zero idea. It's basically that teeny picture that shows up next to your URL. But, if your blog is using blogger, it probably has the default orange & white blogger "B" unless you've changed it.

So, we all like to add some more personalization to our spaces, yea? So here's a little how-to on making your own favicon.

{Just to match my current blog theme, I went with a lollipop picture.}

So, let's use as a starting ground, shall we? It's a free service (or you can pay to upgrade, which I do) that I'm sure most of you know about by now.

It depends what image you want to use as your favicon, whether it be a photo you took, or maybe an image you found elsewhere, or something you created on your own. Either way, upload it to picnik.

Unless your image is already a perfect square, you'll have to go under the edit tab, then to "crop" to make your image a square.  You can see I have mine at 989 x 989 (it's a BIG image). It's fine for now, as long as it's a square.  I decided to just zero in on the lollipop part, but you can do whatever you want for your image.

Now, it's a square. {gasp. shock. the crowds go wild.}

Go ahead and click on the Save & Share tab. This is where you are going to save your image as little file, so make the width & height 100x100. Then save your photo to someplace you'll remember.

Now, here's the part where you have to put the image into the right place.

Log into your blogger account, and click on "design". You should end up in the back end of your blog like the photo below.  Click on the little favicon 'edit' box, upload your image, and voila. Favicon is done.

It's that easy. So? Here's the thing. Mine took about half a day or so to show up and start working. My husband tells me that Internet Explorer (for those of you who still use that?) doesn't convert & show favicons the way all the other browsers (safari, firefox, chrome, etc) do. So, if you still use IE? I can't help you. But for the rest of you, this should work :)

Now, go make your own Favicon.


Happy Tuesday!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Open-ended (or not) questions.

Do you ever get hooked onto a TV show, say...years after it's started, and since has ended? My brother suggested Friday Night Lights to us a month or two ago, and since we started it last week? I cannot.get.enough. As in, I cannot wait until my husband gets home so we can watch another one (or two, or three) episodes. Declan likes to make fun of me about my addiction liking of the show, but--um, who's with me? Best show ever.

What time of the day do you blog? I tend to write my posts whenever they come to me. Typically, on a good day, I have them written the night before and scheduled to post by 7 or 8am the following day. If I'm having a crazy hectic day with work or a non-napping Eme, or playdates, or you know, too much Friday Night Lights the night before, then I write them in the morning during breakfast. 

Oh, and I'm almost always sitting at my kitchen table when I write, with my laptop. On occasion I'll sit on the sofa, but I tend to reserve sofa-laptop-time for pinterest or photo editing. Not sure why, but I just feel if I'm sitting at the table. Don't ask me why. Because I have no clue.

What do your kids wear to bed? Hear me out before you think I'm a creeper or something. This is an honest question. I am obsessed with pj's for Eme. I think it's because they make them too damn cute and hard to resist, not to mention I always find them on clearance like whoa. However, I think (but I'm not certain) that a lot of people just put their kids in onesies for bed (depending on the age). Is this the case? Are pj's overrated? And honestly? I have this weird thing about putting her in non-pj clothes for bedtime. Naptimes? Fine. But bedtime? They must be pj's, or something pretty darn close to it.

Food Inc., have you seen it? Did it revolutionize the way you ate? Because I'd been avoiding that movie since I knew it would shake me and deeply disturb me. But, we finally watched it this past weekend, and it totally did disturb me and equally piss me off at the corruptness of it all. If you watched the movie, what changes did you make in your family? I can easily see myself never eating a hamburger again. I mean it. 

So--go ahead and answer any question you feel you can chime in on. I want input, and I'm curious.


PS: Remember last week on that adoption post? Well, my friend Angie just today (well,  yesterday) held her little girl in her arms for the first time! She and her hubby are in China right now bringing her sweet girl home. You can read about that here

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Silent Sunday: Princess Eme Kay

We've not yet fully entered into the whole princess-phase yet. But when she saw this tiara at her cousins house the other day, girlfriend couldn't resist.


Happy Sunday!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Saturday Morning Scene

{Spoon practice going on over here.}

Wanna link up?
1. Take a picture of your Saturday Morning Scene.
2. Blog about it.
3. Grab the button and add it to your post.
4. Add your (direct) link to the linky at the bottom.
5. Jump around and see what everyone's up to!

(Links that do not go to SMS will be deleted.)
Saturday Morning Scene

(Having trouble grabbing the button? Try highlighting the link, using "ctrl C" to copy & "ctrl V" to paste.)


Thursday, July 21, 2011

Thankful Thursday & a request.

I'm thankful that yesterday, while I was on the way to have a little park & picnic time with Eme, I happened to call my sweet sister-in-law, Kesh. We were chatting & she mentioned she was at a pool, with some friends, and then invited us to come. Instead of getting inside my head about the logistics, and that I'd have to turn around and go home to get our suits, and blah blah...I decided to go. 'Cuz what the heck. I'm glad we did. We had a good time, and I love me some pool time.

I'm thankful that I made it 2.5 days without caffeine. But I cracked. And yesterday afternoon I had a Coke Zero. I mean, still...2.5 days? That wasn't horrible. It could have been worse. I'm still not drinking coffee, for now...and Declan has joined me. This is something personal we're working on and has absolutely nothingggg to do with being pregnant (because I'm NOT), or trying to have a baby (because, we're NOT), as is the rumor on the street, yo. That's not the case. It's just a personal decision for a few weeks, anyway.

I'm thankful that today I'm off with my hubby on a day-trip. Despite it being for work purposes, it's still kind of fun to, you know, talk in the car on a long ride and such. So I'll savor the time with him. I'm also thankful that my momma is willing to spend the whole day taking good care of Emeline for us.

Oh, and I'm thankful for a husband who will gladly run to three stores the night before our trip, with a past-bedtime baby in tow to help me find a pair of khaki's that fit. I mean, going through my closet and throwing out practically everything has it's perks, right? So, a new pair of pants were in order.

Lastly, but not least(ly?)--I'm thankful for all of you. ::cue sappy music:: No, really. Thanks for all your sweet words, for your encouraging emails & comments, and for, well--just being around. You are pretty much awesome. So, on that note--if you haven't introduced yourself yet, why don't you take the chance to? Besides, lurkers are...well...creepy.

Tell me something good. Like, what's the weirdest food you ever ate? (I've eaten bull's testicles before. No lie. And don't judge me. I was tricked into it, and it was only a bite.) Or, what kind of thing sends you into a fit of paranoia? (I pretty much hyperventilate when I leave the house without my phone b/c I panic the worst will happen & I'll NEED IT.) Or, what's one thing you could absolutely, NEVER, ever give up? (Declan's answer is he could never give up his shower. Is it pathetic that I'd gladly give up the shower? Don't answer that.) 

Or you could just tell me why you read. And that'd be cool too.

Anyway. Go ahead. Say hi. :)

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Motivation in a Lollipop.

You remember yesterday? When I said I felt like it'd been forever since I'd taken a picture? Well, my motivation came. And when it comes, it hits hard and it hits fast.

I'm one of those people who needs to act on said motivation right away to see it through. Call it what you will, but it's true.

So shortly after I posted that blog yesterday, I pinned an idea to my "Photography Inspiration" board on Pinterest. It was a little boy, in overalls, with an adorable whirly-pop. I thought, Genius. I'm so doing this. Then I thought, Crap, where do I get a whirly pop

I threw the question up on Twitter, where within a few minutes I had multiple responses all telling me that they'd recently seen them at Cracker Barrel. Perfect. 

When Eme woke up from her nap, I immediately put her in a pair of overalls. She got a pair from a friend for her 1st birthday. Honestly? I'm not a huge overalls fan, but Omigahhh they are so!cute! And so perfect for a shoot like this. So I was THRILLED that we owned a pair at that moment. Hence, making my inspired vision come to life. I fed my girl lunch, I threw her baby Ikea chair in the car, along with my camera and off we went. 

We pranced into Cracker Barrel, bought two pretty lollipops (one for good luck?) and popped back in the car within what felt like seconds. But now, I had to think. Where would we take the pictures? 

There's a park close by but I knew right away that would be a bad idea. 1) I cannot stand crowds around when I'm looking like a crazy-mom taking photos. I just feel...weird. 2) She would get totally distracted and want to play instead. 

So, I decided to sneak (okay, not exactly sneak) over to the restaurant next door that's now closed & abandoned (RIP Max-n-Ermas, we'll miss you), and I eyed-up the premises, being a little creepy-like. There seemed to be some grassy spots and there was no one around. Added bonus, there were no distractions for the girl. Perfect.

And perfect it was. You never even had to know these were taken in an old restaurant parking lot. Hey, I say, get creative with your locations anyway. Considering, well--this had NOTHING to do with the location, but all about the sweet subject (if I do say so myself). 

Anyway--I'm sure you're all Shutup already, Katie--show us. So yea--here they are.


What? You're letting me lick this?

Yep. It fell on the ground. And Yep, I let her lick it after that. 
My favorite shot of the day.

So, a little sugary prop equals some sticky-fun-photographs.

To see the whole set on Flickr, Click here.

Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Fleeting Thoughts.

*I've had a lingering headache for a day and a half now. My brain is not capable of putting together a well written anything right now. Therefore, fleeting thoughts.


So, the headache? Is because I've attempted to quit caffeine for a few weeks cold turkey. As in, I took out my morning coffee ( and also my two fixes of coke zero throughout the day. My body hates me for doing it, thus the wrecking-ball inside my head right now. Literally, no medicine even remotely touches this headache. 

Going to bed with said headache, and waking up with it again? It's like the worst thing ever. I realize, this is like withdrawal for a drug addict. (Awesome. Referencing my caffeine addiction to a drug addict now. I guess it IS technically a drug, yea?) But still....this headache will be the death of me. 


I've been looking for a tablecloth for our kitchen table to help protect it. It's starting to get rings from glasses, knicks and dings. So, I've been on the hunt. The problem is, my table is square. NO ONE HAS SQUARE TABLECLOTHS. They have oblong, oval, and circle. 

So yesterday I came home with a table runner instead. 

Declan sees it when he gets home, and the conversation went something like this:

D: What is this?
K: A table runner.
D: I know that. But is THIS supposed to protect the table?
K: Um, yea. Yea, it'll protect the table.
D: Just HOW do you expect it to do that? I think you bought it just for looks. 
K: See? I can put my..uh...water cup on it, instead of on the wood.

Explanation followed up by a hearty-eye-roll from the husband, and then the dreaded How much was it? question.

This whole situation could have been avoided if they made friggin' SQUARE tablecloths. Just sayin', manufactures. JUST SAYIN'.


I feel like I haven't taken photos in forever. Because, I guess I haven't. Well, its been a few days at least. If it wasn't so hot and humid (literally, when you walk outside it feels like the sun is slapping you in the face), I'd be all over that. 

But, let's be honest. Right now? Staying in my air conditioned home just feels a lot better. I'm pretty sure I heard something on the news about there being a heat warning or something. So that means to stay inside, right? (Right? right?) Or lay besides a pool? Or in a pool? Since I don't have a pool, then I'll stick with the former for now.


I may have just motivated myself to get outside and take some photos today. The verdict is still out on whether it will happen or not, though.


I've been contemplating a post with about a million (not quite) questions that I have for YOU. Things that having multiple people answer would help bring clarity. You know, like helping me with decorating decisions, or kid-related questions, and a What Would YOU Do type thing. Now that I type it out, it sounds like a horrible idea, doesn't it?

Okay, pretend you never heard me say that.


Wishing you all a wonderful, headache-free day. I can assure you right now that I'm bearing all the headache-woes for the whole world right now, or so it feels.

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Holy productive day-batman.

Literally, our holy day. You know, Sunday? The day of rest? Well, we completely blew that out of the water. Talk about a crazy-hectic-productive-day around the house. Well, pretty much our entire weekend I should say.

Those feel so rare now it know, productive weekends. 'Cuz we've been spending weekends relaxing and doing whatever we feel like doing, all while knowing we were shoving that to-do list further and further to the back of our minds. 

But this weekend? We finally stuck it to the man. I mean. Well, you know. We actually got around to doing stuff.

There were Home Depot trips, Walmart trips, a full-blown-grocery-shopping trip, a wonderfully blissful (sans child, thanks mom!) trip to Ikea, a little lunch date thrown in there, garage-organizing, closet-cleaning, fat-clothes-ridding, furniture building (well we DID go to Ikea), TV mounting, blind-hanging, and a much awaited and anticipated treadmill purchase, even. 

We were so busy, but it was a good kinda busy. The kind where you can go into Monday with that feeling of accomplishment. 

Can we just talk about all the clothes I got rid of for a second? I mean, really. THREE.HUGE.BAGS. How is it possible that I even owned that many clothes (none of which fit me anymore), and why oh why was I holding onto them? Also. Let's talk about what a boost of confidence it is to put on your former "skinny dress pants" and have them practically fall to your ankles. Now that was awesome. I didn't think twice this time about getting rid of clothes and the whole "what if I need these" thought didn't even creep up into my head once. I refuse to go there. 

And let's also talk about how hysterical this child is. She kills me (and exhausts me), and I love her to pieces. We all had a super, productive, tiring, yet-fulfilling weekend.

We hope you did, too.


Happy Monday!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Saturday Morning Scene

This is where I'll be playground.

Wanna link up?
1. Take a picture of your Saturday Morning Scene.
2. Blog about it.
3. Grab the button and add it to your post.
4. Add your (direct) link to the linky at the bottom.
5. Jump around and see what everyone's up to!

(Links that do not go to SMS will be deleted.)
Saturday Morning Scene

(Having trouble grabbing the button? Try highlighting the link, using "ctrl C" to copy & "ctrl V" to paste.)


Friday, July 15, 2011

Little Blessings

Yesterday morning I randomly decided to challenge (ha) myself to keeping my camera with me, purposefully looking for those little gem-moments throughout the day. 

I just feel like lately I've been just living my days, getting caught up in being so busy that I'm not able to stop and realize the blessing in the small things. Honestly? I think going through my camera at the end of the day was really fun, and a way to look back and think Oh I actually DID something today. Wait, a lot of things. And wow, I had a good day.

Too often I forget to stop a minute and just be. I don't care if that sounds cheesy or tacky. It's the truth.

I've narrowed my photos down, but here are some of my gem-moments in yesterday.

Morning reading. It's my morning therapy. I know you like my Christmas mug :)
So often I find myself annoyed with the messes. But yesterday? It reminded me that I do have a happy, healthy, and curious, sweet toddler-girl that I love unconditionally.


Our sweet pup, who often gets the shaft on the blog. He's a good boy, and loves our girl.
Cute baby capris...and ankle creases. Oh, the ankle creases.
It was only 83* yesterday. It felt like heaven outside.
Please pardon my dust.
We took a walk. Two walks in fact. 

We discovered leaves. And then she proceeded to eat it. Fabulous.
I love to garden, but I've neglected my gardens the last two years. I got out there yesterday and weeded them, and I had a little helper.
Oh, that face.
Dinner. It may be simple, but I usually dread making dinner. Yesterday I pulled up a chair and let Emeline "help". I won't tell you that it ended up with her falling half-way in the sink with a wet-head. Just know it was worth it. 
When I snuck over Declan's shoulder and took this picture he was all, What are you doing? Um. ok. But, I love it.
A cold one in a frosty mug. 

If you've never done this, I highly recommend it. It was fun :)

Happy Friday!

[Saturday Morning Scene---tomorrow! Be there.]

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Hi my name is Katie, and we listen to tween music.

I have music on all.the.time around here. We pay for the pandora subscription and it's worth every penny.

Day and night...night and day. It's playing. And Emeline? Loves it. She loves music. She has been moving and grooving since she was in the womb, I swear to you. So it came as no surprise to me that the girl has rhythm and moves. And shoulder shakes. And head bobs. And recently she just added her feet. 

It's freaking adorable.

But, the car? The car is loads of fun. I've always been a turn-the-music-up and sing-loudly type of girl. And I love that I'm sort of raising Eme (hehe) to be the same. I mean, let loose a little bit, right? 

Well, girl can in the car. Shocking, since she's strapped in a seat, but she will move her head and kick her feet, and sometimes, on a good day, add clapping and slapping of her hands on her thighs. 

But, there's one key to all this. 

::Whispers::  She loves Justin Bieber. 

Oh heck, screw the whisper. WE LOVE JUSTIN BIEBER. Hi, my name is Katie, I am 26 years old and I have a crush on Justin Bieber. Okay, well not a crush, but I like his music. I own his cd. And I listen to the Justin Bieber Pandora station MOST of the time. [I swear to you, DO NOT knock it till you try it. It is packed-full of some of the most fun, upbeat, party music everrrr.] I've also watched his documentary willingly twice, and I love it more each time I see it. [Sidenote: if you haven't seen it? You really should. It'll make you both respect & fall in love with the little teen heart throb.]

But, really. His music has some magic power over Emeline. If we're heading home right before naptime, in the car, and she's getting fussy, and I'm trying to avoid any slim possibility of a car nap? All I have to do is turn on a little JB.

And this happens:

While she loves all music it seems, nothing quite gets the response that Justin Bieber does. And I can't say I blame her.


Happy Thursday!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Who leaves first, the chicken or the egg? Uh, wait.

Every weekday morning, a showered, dressed-for-work husband leans over and kisses me goodbye. At which point I normally fumble out the words "I love you", with one-eye take a peak at the monitor (praying she's still sleeping blissfully), and then turn over to catch a few more minutes of sleep.

I hate the morning. No matter what I do, I just cannot find myself to be a morning person. Coffee helps, but only a little. 

Up until Emeline was born and I was teaching--I was always the first person out of the house. Meaning, between Declan and I, I was the first one up in the mornings. I was the first one showered and dressed. I was the one who took the dog out (since he was, and I was the one who had to lean over and kiss a sleeping-husband while fully dressed for work. 

I'm not gonna lie. I HATED IT. Since I wasn't a morning person, I despised having to be up and at 'em before him. I was secretly jealous that he could linger in bed longer than I could. I wanted that to be me.

One of the many upsides to staying home with my daughter was my new ability to take-it-easy in the mornings. Granted, for the first 11 months of her life, I was up throughout the night about a billion times. But, still. 

I got to stay in bed in the morning (while baby snoozed), while Declan shuffled off to work. 

I was thinking about this the other day. How much I love not being the first one out of the house like I used to be. About how glad I am that he's the one saying goodbye to ME in the mornings. And that he's the one who takes the dog out, and does the morning around-the-house stuff like make coffee. And not vice-versa. 

Honestly? I even preferred days where Declan and I would leave the house at the same time. Which would happen every once in a while when I went in at a normal time, and let's just say, he had to go in extra early. But knowing I was leaving the house with a snoozing husband most days just didn't work for me (har-har). 

So I'm wondering--what's it like at your house? Who leaves first? Do you prefer being up first, last, or to sleep to oblivion? No. Really. And yes, these are the things I lie awake thinking about at night. I'm genuinely curious, and weird like that.

*disclaimer (ha): Declan eats his breakfast at work, and has his lunch already there for the entire week--so it's not like I'm being a neglectful wife or anything. Just felt I should, ahem...clarify :)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Summer Reflections & a smattering of photos.

One of my favorite things about summer is hanging out in my parents backyard. The two of them put so much TLC into our childhood home & yard, even though they are empty-nesters now. My mom is a bird lover. Not one of those crazy-bird-lover types, but a bird-lover nonetheless. And their backyard is a sanctuary for those little creatures.

Emeline and her PopPop looking for birds.
Everyone who visits there comments on the beauty of their little outdoor sanctuary. It's tranquil, really, and we love it. Emeline loves it. She hears birds constantly, points her little finger to the sky, and will pick-out a bird she spots hanging out in a tree or on a feeder.  She's got her MomMom's love for birds.

So, we have a lot of cookouts there in the summer. Last minute, thrown-together cookouts.

If there's a game on? Bring the TV outside. Because, why not? It's summer and anything goes.
 Emeline has officially declared her love of MomMom's iPad. She plays this matching-zoo game gets this excited-gasp face every time she gets a match.

It's been HOT here. Yesterday I finally put Eme in her swimsuit and we played at the splash park. I honestly think it should be some kind of law for a little splash-zone section to be instated at every single park. Because, dude, IT IS HOT HERE. And the slides and other playground toys are stingy-hot right now, and pretty much impossible to enjoy.

For being one of the littlest ones there, she held her own.
I had a lot of moments at the park yesterday where I kind of scratched my head like, who the heck is that toddler? And why does she look so big? Surely that's not my baby girl. 

I have a feeling those moments are going to keep on coming, too. I'm not sure how I feel about it either.
Aunt Susie makes the park that.much.better.
 The other great thing about summer are playdates. Meeting friends (or cousins in this case) at the park, even just for an hour or two. It's memory-making, and it's naptime-inducing. And both of those things are awesome in my book.

Hello curly-q. Nice to meet you. [Eme & her 5-week-younger cousin, Ian.]
And with her big-cousin, Jayden.
The whole, holy-crap-I-have-a-toddler thing only sunk in more when I got home that afternoon. I don't know why some days are worse than others in that department. But, she's just getting so old, and And big. And losing some of her baby'ness, and gaining this new found confidence. I mean, it's good. It is. But it makes a momma kind of sad at how fast time flies.

So the summer days are good. A little bitter-sweet...but good. I remember looking forward to this summer so much. Declan and I would talk about her being a big-girl, able to play at the playground, go in the pool, and run around & play. She's doing that all now, and it's like--whoa momma. 

We're gonna enjoy it. Because next summer? Is gonna come too fast.


happy tuesday!