Monday, August 29, 2011

Photos from my parents' visit

So . . . . one month later --

 My parents came for a week at the end of July --
It was a nice time with many games of
Go Fish, Old Maid, Candy Land
and general lazing about.
Jamie snoozed with Grandma that first night.
She has a "mother's touch" for sure --
No sleepy baby could stand a chance against her.

 In the middle of the week we went to a beach,
for some swimming and sandy sitting.
The boys L-O-V-E-D it, as you can imagine.
Even Jamie got nakey and splashed in the water.

 This is Truen pretending to be a hammerhead shark
It was sooo adorable, even more so with how small he is
Diego is above --
He hovered around these kids, staring and splashing,
Until they they all started playing together.

 I love this scene --
Diego's birthday, at the park
All the colors and activity just makes me smile.
He spent his 6th birthday with both grandmas and grandpas.

 Double-double baby bubbo --
With Grandma & Grandpa's shiny rental car.

 Diego was writing letters in the sand at the park

Diego's birthday was a (fun) doozy. 
We went to a playground, then out for lunch,
then to another park to for presents and lemon bars,
then swimming at different park because we knew they'd love it,
then out for dinner again because we were all so hungry.
This was Truen after swimming --
He just couldn't last a second longer.  Totally asleep.

Our last day with Grandma & Grandpa --
I made the voyage back to the Twin Cities
to spend a couple more days with them before they had to leave.
We went to a child's indoor dream-park,
Edinburough Park in Edina, which, of course, they also loved.
I like the pell-mell feel of this picture.

Saturday, August 27, 2011


August 12, 2011
:: from our driveway ::

I don't know what is more amazing, the fact that I've been meaning to post this picture since last Sunday, or the sky itself.  Yuuuust kidding.  Drama.  But seriously.  It has been on my mind for almost an entire week, but life just gets in the way. 

Want to know what else is amazing?  Diego playing Super Mario Brothers 3 on the Nintendo NES right now, such a familiar tune, whimpering, "Mama, can you please help me...?  It's just so hard!"  He can't get beyond the first fire-breathing flower-thingy.

And, really, isn't this just the most stunning skyscape? It has everything -- storm, sunset, clear blue.  The layers, the depth!  I could gush for hours.

Friday, August 19, 2011

One of those quiet moments

There is something so luxurious about fresh garden herbs.  This morning I cut basil, sweet marjoram, and parsley in the deliciously warm sunshine and felt positively glamorous.  (The baby was napping and the boys were playing up near the house.)

The spicy-sweet fragrance wafting up was so intoxicating that I didn't even notice the three uninvited hens who wandered in.  Shoo!  Shoo!  They left easily, which surprised me.  I gathered my booty and sauntered up to the house, my thoughts lingering in the scent and the sun.

It felt good.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

He's got skillz

Little Jamie is pulling himself up on things.
Un-un-un-un, I can hardly believe it.
Today he played with the cat scratching post.
Meow, meow Schtinky-do!

(That's what I've been calling him)

"Kids or cats," I grumbled the other morning as I put the offending caterwauler outside at O-dark thirty.  One or the other is always waking me up in the wee hours.  Sometimes I feel like I just can't catch a break.  When one of the usual violators [of my sleep] is zonked, someone else decides to disrupt my zzzz's with whatever-who-knows.  Mrar!

And this was yesterday!
He pulled himself up into this position.
He was laughing hysterically at his brothers, and
smooshing his face into the mattress.

Based on the baby calendars, Diego didn't pull himself up into a stand until he was 9 months old.  Truen was 8 months.  Schtinky is 7 months.  Yowza.  It makes sense, but I'm still a little shocked.  He has loved being upright, standing and stomping, since he was 2-3 months old.

He is also "commando" crawling, getting from point A to point B by pulling with his arms and pushing with his toes.  He is getting up and rocking on his hands and knees and getting up on his hands and feet like a little bear.  I am amazed.  He's already mobile.  !!!  I plan to put up the baby gate on the stairs tomorrow.

What else?

Little JAMIE
  • Loves rolling around on the bed right before bedtime, with little coos, mostly face-down and smooshing his face into the sheets
  • "Dances" when we whistle or sing, be-bopping by shaking his head back-and-forth
  • His favorite activity is holding onto my pointer fingers, standing and stomping in front of me, smiling happily
  • Wiggles all. the. time.
  • Laughs gleefully at his brothers
  • Does full-body lunges and head cranks to be able to see what his brothers are doing
  • Turns head to "Schtinky" and "Stinky" (whoops)
  • Gets very happy and excited to see his Dada
  • New thing: spreading arms akimbo with fists clenched, mostly in the highchair, face tipped upwards with a huge grin
  • Sometimes still tenses up when visually overloaded -- he scrunches up and gets so stiff it is like holding a doll (this was extremely common at 2-3 months . . . I couldn't even walk with him facing out or up/down the stairs)
  • Bites and pulls my nipple at the end of nursing when he's getting bored or frustrated (yeeeouch!)
  • Is getting his first tooth (the same one that Diego is losing): lower front left
  • L-O-V-E-S the cats
  • Easily rolls out of his wrap (the swaddle), even with his arms down
  • Wakes up at 7:00 AM like clockwork
  • Has started taking a long morning nap vs. long afternoon nap (new to me -- both his brothers were long afternoon nappers)
  • Totally has tan lines in his fat rolls
  • Loves to pull hair -- I swear he's going to give me bangs with how much hair he gets ahold of and breaks off
  • Snaps my right bra-strap and pulls Blaine's chest hair when we are holding him on our hip
  • Will repeat "ma-ma-ma-ma" and "da-da-da-da" (though not reliably)

Friday, August 12, 2011

11 years

Lexington Apartments (Blaine's place)
I've always loved this picture --
and I still have that shirt.

Gooseberry Falls, Two Harbors, MN
Photo taken by LSJF

Snowed in and LOVING it --
It ended up being the Four Days of Christmas.
Lovely, just lovely.

Diego's 6th birthday
No longer just the Two of Us . . . 
Now we are the Five of Us

It is nice to be married in 2000, because I never have to do the math.  It is 11 years today (+ 4 = 15 years total, yowza).  I feel happy, settled, understood. 

Our relationship feels like a comfortable and colorful pair of woolen socks on a chill night under the stars.  Immature fights are a thing of the past, his smile and scent is home, and we are just as intrigued by each other and the things around us as ever. 

Only now it includes three bright and bellowing boys bouncing all over us.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Breeching the brain fog

I am still reeling from the past three weeks which included prepping for our county fair submissions, my parents visiting, and a week in St. Paul visiting family and friends.  It was a wonderful time, but now I am wallowing and feeling like I will never be able to catch up again.  I hate the transition back into "real life".  It makes me never want to leave the house again. 

I've had 4 different obligations this week and the boys ask every morning, "Where are we going to go today?"  Finally, today I was able to answer, "Nowhere!" with sweet relief.  I would say that it feels so good, except for the fact that I look around and see nothing but all the work that should be done.  Rubbish and mess everywhere.  Not to mention the 40-some cabbages, 30+ peppers, and 46 tomato plants staring me in the face.  How will I ever get it all done?

Though . . . I did grit my teeth and try to ignore the sandbox-like kitchen floor this morning while I had a tea party and several un-birthday parties with my boys, complete with "birthday presents" in festive bags or tin boxes.  How could I miss out on that??

I say "birthday presents" because they were just items lying around the house wrapped up with love and innocent glee.  Truen was the promoter of this party and when he opened up his "World's Best Mother" trophy and the tiny wooden-handled party knife that we use for play-dough, he was as bright and happy as if he had gotten a real gift.  "Ohhhh . . . a knife!" he said with a smile.  I got 2 plastic checker pieces, a Bionicles claw, and a worn-out Star Wars mini-book.  My favorites. ♥

Meanwhile, the baby is waking up and I owe you a bazillion pictures.

[Written with one-and-a-half hands while nursing the babe] I've been thinking about starting a gratitude journal to record all the little happy moments in daily life.  Because they are there.  In spite of anything or everything else, they do exist; and I really need help trying to remember that.

(This post with quite cathartic in that sense.)