Wednesday, August 31, 2011

wednesday menu

We've had the flu. Little Man, Benjamin, and I have all had it rather severely, while thankfully Brother and Sweet Pea have escaped practically unscathed. We obviously haven't been doing a lot of eating, and I haven't made it to the store yet this week (I usually do errands on Mondays), so I am finally getting around to making a menu. Better late than never, right?

Partly because I'm behind schedule, partly because my in-laws are going to be visiting this weekend and I need to have a more firm plan than I usually do on weekends, and partly because it's a holiday weekend, I'll be doing my planning a little differently than usual.

W-frozen pizza, fruit
Th-pasta with red sauce, roasted chicken, salad
F-french toast, fruit
S-bean and cheese burritos, carrots
Su-brazilian marinated kebabs, rice, salad
M-hamburgers, hot dogs, grilled corn-on-the-cob

What is cooking in your kitchen this week?

Thursday, August 25, 2011

newborn portraits

Between sleep deprivation, juggling the responsibilities of now having three children, spending time with my husband, trying to keep the dishes and laundry in acceptably small piles, making it to appointments in a timely way, and baby snuggling, I really haven't had much time to indulge in making beautiful things for the fun of it like I usually do. I have, however, been enjoying spending more time behind my camera, resulting in lots of lovely photos and, if possible, a third-born who is more photographed than the first-born was. ; )

The following are my favorite shots from my newborn photo session of Sweet Pea when she was just six days old.

It's hard to get a good photo of newborn with their eyes open because they have a hard time focusing. I have Brother and his loud noises directly behind me to thank for this lovely shot.

This one makes me smile.

The bedspread in these photos was hand-crocheted by my great-grandmother for my grandpa while she was expecting him. I am so honored that she wanted me to have this precious heirloom.

I really love tiny baby toes.

We used this one for her birth announcements.

More baby feet...Couldn't resist.

She's so tiny!

Linking up with Jennifer's Studio Sneak Peek.

Monday, August 22, 2011

brothers and sister

One of the questions we've been hearing the most lately is "How are the boys doing with their new sister?" The answer? Well, they adore her, and aside from a little more general emotion than usual, their transition to having a tiny sister has been very smooth.

Sweet Pea and Little Man already seem to have a special bond. She listens in a special, intent way when he talks, and he loves to carefully hold her. He rejoices in having a sister, marvels at her tiny fingers, toes, and nose, and enjoys narrating what she is doing "She's wiiiiide awake!" "She's faaaaast asleep!" or "She's very wiggly!"

"If a big boy puts his finger in a tiny baby's hand, she'll hold on to it tightly." ~Little Man

Brother doesn't have the whole little sibling thing figured out quite as well as Little Man does, but that's okay since he's never done it before. His times of holding Sweet Pea are brief, usually ending in the urgent request: "Take it! Take it!" He does, however, take great delight in bringing his sister toys and blankets and helping with wipe opening and diaper disposing when I change her.

"Hug an' kiss sister." ~Brother

[Brother even shared his beloved puppies with Sweet Pea]

monday menu

[just a pretty picture]

As you can see, I'm still not up to full speed as far as meal preparation goes. And that's okay. I mean, I just had a baby two-weeks-plus-a-day ago. I'm slowly getting back into things, though, and I have high aspirations of actually making a real meal or two this week. So this is what I'm planning, but I'm not going to beat myself over it if it just doesn't happen.

M-casserole from one of Benjamin's kind coworkers
T-steak, rice-a-roni, asparagus
W-frozen pizza, salad
Th-roasted garlic lemon herb shrimp over pasta and probably more salad
F-pancakes and scrambled eggs

What are you making this week?

Saturday, August 20, 2011


yesterday was our fifth wedding anniversary
five years of marriage
where has the time gone?

wasn't it more like five months ago
that I was planning and preparing
walking down the aisle
leaving on the honeymoon?

five years

they've been good years
and i'm looking forward to many, many more
because each year
just gets better


we had fun
as we celebrated
he gave me flowers
and a new pair of earrings
i got my hair done by a professional
(because really, i'm pretty clueless about hair)
we left all three children in their grandparents' care
and dressed up and went to dinner
we ordered the fancy entrees
plus an appetizer and dessert
(something we never do)
we took in the sunset
and we talked and talked and talked

after all
five years
only comes around

Tuesday, August 16, 2011


Yesterday Brother turned two. How time flies! He got a few special treats: a trip to our local bookstore and a new book he chose himself, a tiny happy birthday mylar balloon from Grandma, cards in the mail, and a piece of store bought carrot cake (I'm not, after all, Super-Mom) for our tiny, family celebration. We'll have an official celebration late, but for now what we did was just right: special yet not overwhelming.

Right now Brother...

just learned to turn somersaults
loves to jump
(off of raised surfaces as well as just bouncing on the floor)
is pushing (and learning) the limits of his crazy climbing skills
can swing in the big swings and go down the little slides at the park
can throw balls very far
enjoys pillow fights

loves to color--especially with markers
is left handed
is developing a decided preference for his favorite play-doh toys
cooks up all sorts of "food" with the kitchen toys
(the other day it was soup, and this morning it was pizza)
builds towers with blocks but prefers the toy animals
loves to "fix" things with his tools
can make impressive car sound effects
is figuring out the workings of simple puzzles

loves to strum the guitar and play notes on the piano
sings and hums throughout the day
has a few recognizable songs
is putting words into more sentences and phrases all the time
parrots all sorts of things we say
is very careful with his pronunciation
has begun having little conversations on the phone

helps unload the dishwasher
helps measure and mix when I bake
opens the wipe box and throws away diapers at the right times
is learning to put away toys
is learning self-control (no hitting, screaming, pinching, etc.)
is getting better at staying in his big boy bed
adores his blankets and stuffed puppies
is generous with hugs, kisses, and cuddles (to family, at least)

He is growing so quickly and is so full of life and personality that these words seem so bland and flat. Part of me wants to freeze time to enjoy this stage for longer (and perhaps that's what the words are for, bland though they may be), but the future is too exciting to freeze it permanently.

Brother, you bring us so much joy. I can't wait to see how you continue to grow! Happy Birthday.

Monday, August 15, 2011

monday menu

Well, we are definitely still in the adjustment-to-having-a-tiny-baby-again phase, but things are beginning to fall into some sort of pattern. To help the routine continue to form, I've decided to start menu planning again. As you'll be able to tell, it's still not going to be regular meal making yet, but we'll get there again. : )

M-take out from a local restaurant thanks to a gift card from a friend. I'll probably get the mushroom burger.
T-bagel sandwiches, fresh fruit
W-pasta with sauce from a jar and some sort of vegetable
Th-dinner thanks to Benjamin's company after his work golf tournament
F-our wedding anniversary, dinner to be decided

What are you making this week?

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

welcome, little one

We were thrilled to welcome Sweet Pea into the world on Sunday, August 7, 2011 at 3:45 a.m. after what was my quickest and least difficult labor yet! I'm still finding more new reasons for thanksgiving as I review the event in my memory.

She weighed 7 pounds 12 ounces and was 20 1/4 inches long.

We are all charmed and find her adorably delightful.

Little Man says:
"I'm glad I have a sister!"
"I love my sister, [Sweet Pea]"
"Look at her tiny toes!" (or nose, or fingernails...)
"Please may I hold my sister?"

Brother says:
"Touch! "Touch it!"
(He's still getting a grasp on pronouns.)
"She's movin'!"
"Pet head!"
"Hi! Hi! Hi!"

Since arriving home yesterday morning, we have been enjoying quiet time together as a family of five, beginning to become accustomed to a new way of life, and looking forward to the adventures ahead.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

40 weeks and still counting

(photo of Sweet Pea and I
by my sister-in-law
way back at about 35 weeks)

Little Man arrived 9 days before he was due.
Brother was 4 days early.
Sweet Pea has a mind of her own.

Her due date has come and gone,
leaving us all in suspense.
I've never been pregnant this long before
and it's a little surreal.

While I've had times of impatience,
nerves, already raw, rubbed sorer by careless remarks,
and the inevitable roller-coaster trips between optimism and despair,
I've found it much less agonizing to continue waiting
than I had expected.

There is grace for each hour.
There are little boys to distract and delight,
routine duties and tasks to perform,
projects to craft, dreams to keep dreaming, and plans to make.

I am thankful.

I must admit, though,
that each day I long a little intensely
to hold my sweet baby in my arms...