Friday, November 16, 2012

To Henry, One and a Half

Henry,
You are a whole year and a half old now.  Actually, you are 19 months old now but close enough. A year and a half old seems different.  I feel like I have to admit that you are officially crossing over to the more toddler end of the spectrum even though much of you is still a bit babyish.  A whole lot of you is toddler now, that is for sure.  I haven't done an official update on you in a while because until your 18 month checkup, you had not been to the doctor since you turned a year old.  You were due for a 15 month checkup right at the time we were moving from Alaska.  I figured it would be good to meet your new pediatrician when we got here so I called to schedule, only to hear that they don't do a 15 month visit in Iowa.  Luckily, you hadn't been sick in between so that meant no visit for 6 months.  I had expected to hear a huge jump in stats since sometimes it honestly feels like you wake up in the morning a pound heavier than when I put you to bed the night before.  You were 23 pounds at a year, and to my surprise, you are only 24 pounds now!  You are 32 inches so you sprang up like a little beanstalk.  You're a long and lean boy, which we always suspected you would be.  We knew you'd have long legs since we first felt the space they took up inside my belly so many months ago.  Still, I was almost a bit bummed to hear you had only grown a pound.  In the moment I felt like you should have gained more, and I didn't know what else we could have done to help since you eat like a horse.  Honestly, as much as your daddy and I do.  It's constant.  I make nutritious things for you, give you snacks whenever you ask for them, give you whole milk etc.  Your pediatrician assured me that it was perfectly fine, and that your growth curve looked great.  So you are in the 65% for height, and 20% for weight.  I feel silly now about feeling disappointed at the visit when I heard the weight.  It's evident that you're completely healthy and I should have just trusted that.

So on the topic of food,
you are crazy about it. All day long it's "sssss ssss ssss" which is how you say snack.  You also sign for food by holding your thumb and first finger up to your mouth and making a loud smacky sound. A few of your favorites are:
*berries of all kinds ("ba-boo (blue berries), blackberries, etc.)
*carrots from our tofu curry dish
*brown rice with braggs on it
*"nanas" (banana)
*"PACK"! which are those little pouches of organic fruit/veggie mixtures.
*Yogurt with granola
*cheese
There are more of course.  You love your food!  In true toddler fashion though you're getting a bit more picky about vegetables.  Broccoli cannot be hidden from you unless smooshed to a pulp.  You will find it no matter how delicious the meal.  You hate tomatoes, and most leafy greens, unless it's kale in crispy roasted chip form.  Luckily we always have avocado, carrots, and packs to fall back on, because you have to be in the right mood to even give other veggies the time of day.

You're seeming older in a lot of ways but I think verbally you are making the biggest jumps recently.  You have so, so many words, and you're like a little parrot repeating us all day.  Your daddy has to remind me to watch my mouth sometimes, because apparently my vocabulary includes a few "choice words" here and there.  Oops! DO NOT repeat me when I say them, please. I'll try harder. Some of my favorite things you say are:
*"One more!" with your tiny little pointer finger up in front of your face
*"Curl!" (squirrel)
*"Hi Mommy!"
*"No" and "Yeah"... I'm sure those won't be favorites some day, but for now I'm amazed at the way you use them... you've definitely got those meanings down!
*All your animal noises, your versions of your favorite foods, they all sound so cute coming out of your mouth.
*Oh, and you LOVE tractors, which you call "ba-bers"

You like to go pee in the potty when the mood strikes you, you love babies "day-dees", and your favorite thing is going for walks outside where you don't have to ride in the stroller.  Some days I wish you'd sit in there so I could get a little exercise in, but I know the most exciting thing for you is when you get to walk too. I laughed on the phone with your Grandma the other day because we had left for a walk 25 minutes ago and had only made it three houses down on our street.  But it's beautiful because you think that every tiny pebble, every stick, every walnut is worth stopping for.  It's so fun to see that those things never get old for you.  You remember all the houses that have pumpkins, where the dogs live, and you'll stand there waiting for them to rush to the door and bark at you.  When we see squirrels or cats, we stop for an extra 5 minutes because it's just too hard to drag you away from that kind of fun.

I know you're starting to get more opinionated and things won't always be as easy (they never are in toddlerhood, right?), and that's okay!  But right now I think your daddy and I would both agree that you are at the very best age ever.  So full of energy, and excitement for all things big and small, still cuddly and as loving as can be.  We cannot get enough of you, little one.

This is Lovie, who you call "Ba" (aka love).  He took over as your sleep comfort when you stopped nursing when we moved to Iowa.  You love him!






Sunday, October 21, 2012

Another reason I hate computers.

It is truly unfortunate that I know so very little about technology.  What I do know, is that blogging can be very difficult for me sometimes because I have pictures that I want to share, yet I cannot load them onto my laptop.  It works perfectly fine on the big desktop in the basement, and while I love to work down there, it's much more difficult than just sneaking in a few moments here and there on the laptop, wherever I may be. I have tried everything I can think of.  I've used a regular USB cord, a card reader, I've inserted the SD card straight into the side, and nada. No luck whatsoever.  I could just suck it up and do all of my writing downstairs but I'll just be honest and say that if I have to go down there and sit there to wait for the photos to load and do every bit of writing there, days go with no writing at all.  I just don't have time to sit down there most days.  I write, do the dishes quickly, come back to write for a few more minutes, then do something else.  I write for a wee bit when I sneak away for a study break once a week or so.  On the laptop. But with no pictures, no posts, and a very bummed me. I hate it when an opportunity to write is missed because of this.  If only I could just figure out what all of these little pop up messages mean on the laptop but like I said... I don't know much about technology.  Time to do some research, or you'll be hearing from me shorty from the basement...

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

We are here.

Hello long lost friends!
I took an unexpected break, but I've missed it here more than I thought.   I've always loved writing, and I've loved blogging from the very moment I started here.  But I only love it when it doesn't bring a load of pressure along with it, and I guess when the creative juices weren't flowing, I didn't want to feel the pressure to write.  I wanted to feel no guilt in just taking time away, and trying to really dive into the days here and soak up the fun we are having.  The fact is though, that I miss this space and connecting to people through blogging, so I'm here.  I know that when you follow a blogger who doesn't post regularly it can be frustrating... so if you are still here with me, reading along, thank you. I always hope to be better.  And I appreciate every single moment you take to look at this blog.

Henry and I have been busy enjoying the perfect weather we've been lucky enough to have here.  We are getting a nice long autumn, and it has felt so great!  Now that I've decided not to go back to work until I'm done with the IBCLC program (feels forever away, essentially), I'm lucky enough to still be spending each day soaking up the time with Henry.  I study a bit here and there also, though soon I'll need to crack down on that and my work load will increase.  I will also be doing some hours at the hospital soon, so I feel great about spending the days just me and my little man while I can.  I need to enjoy every minute I can get before we get much busier!
We have been visiting park after park, taking walks, playing at the library, rolling in the grass and leaves, pumpkin hunting, playing chase, feeding ducks, making treats and loving each other's company.  I miss work like crazy, but there's no where I'd rather be than along side my little H during this awesome time.  18 months is so great, and since he finally had another check up I'll have an 18 month update soon.  This boy is changing at a crazy pace.




Until next time,
V.



Monday, September 17, 2012

What We've Been Up To

 I hope you all had a great weekend!  Last week brought a new determination for me to break up the little rut that we found ourselves in during the days.  I don't feel right calling it a rut because really it's just our daily routine that we enjoy.  Routines work really well around here, but I don't like to find them becoming rigid, where we do exactly the same thing day after day when we're at home.  We are used to being quite busy and we needed a little of that energy back!  So I came up with a few new activities to do with Henry, and that was all it took to just reconnect us with each other and all of the fun, every day things that are all around us.  I sometimes forget just how quickly he's growing, and how much more he is capable of and interested in each day.  Honestly, even just a few days makes a huge difference... He is learning so quickly!  One of my main goals as a parent is to give him the opportunity to constantly explore and experiment with new things, and while I try to include lots of little adventures in our days, I am always reminded that for a toddler, it doesn't take much to please.  The activities don't have to be fancy to be really wonderful.  Some of his favorite things to do with me are in fact, quite the opposite. Playing with the laundry, pushing the vacuum, turning it on and off, holding the dustpan for me, emptying the bookshelf as I put all of the books away, these are some of his favorite things.  We spend the majority of our day playing outside, in the yard, at the park, on a walk... but when we're home, he loves to do those everyday little chores.  Like I said though, we needed some new activities, so...
Here are some of the little adventures we had during the week:

Henry's first kayaking trip.  He liked it a lot!
 We made granola bars together.  Henry was especially fond of missing the bowl and throwing oats on the floor. I think he secretly just wanted to ensure a vacuuming session afterwards :) 


Daddy snapped a picture of us while we stirred.  I wasn't allowed to touch the spoon, so I just held the pot still.
 We made finger paints!  Henry isn't that into coloring or painting yet... but he's definitely into squeezing different textures through his hands and watching the mess unfold.  So this was still fun! They didn't really stain and were a breeze to clean up.  I was surprised.


 This wasn't an activity.  Just a cute moment of Henry checking himself out in the mirror
 Probably the highlight for H.  A friend opened up the fire station so he could climb on all of the trucks!


 He tested out every single vehicle they had. 
 And who knew- he LOVES to help with dishes! This is great because I feel like I do them all day long.  I don't know why I never had him "help" with those before because he loves playing in water and doing big boy activities. I'm sure this will be his new favorite thing to do in no time.  See? Easy to please.  Also, doing the dishes was not an activity that I came up with.  The thought makes me giggle.  It just happened to be something we were doing today that Eric snapped a picture of. But you better bet we'll be doing a lot more of it during the days!


Saturday, September 15, 2012

Delicious Start To Autumn

Today we went to watch football with Eric's dad, and as we walked in he had the most wonderful surprise waiting.  We had talked about going to the orchard to pick apples for applesauce soon, and he had done so this week, picking up an extra bag for us.   It has been a long time since I've made applesauce, but in my opinion, baking and cooking anything with apples is one of the very best parts of fall.  I've been half way looking forward to the changing season because autumn has always been my favorite time of year, but I've been clinging a bit to the last moments of summer because it was a short one for us, and I was really soaking up the feeling of a few hot months.  I can certainly say I am done clinging to summer now, and am more than ready for this season and all of the cozy things it brings.  Like making applesauce, of course.
I love the whole process, how involved it is, how all it takes is the simplest and freshest ingredients to make the most delicious treat, the overwhelmingly delicious smell that surrounds you as it simmers away, and how next to nothing is wasted in the end.  We started with a huge bag of apples,  included the core, seeds, and peels in the pot to cook, and at the end we may have had half a cup total that was sifted out.  Pretty much just seeds and the tough part that surrounds them.  
We will be heading to the apple orchard in the coming weeks to pick more.  I can't wait to see Henry there, I know he'll be just as in love with it as I always have been. 

In other news, I'm happy to say that after my down day last week, I'm feeling much better! I tried really hard to plan some fun things for Henry and I to do, and I'll share some of our projects this week.  The boy likes to bake (throw ingredients on the floor), I can tell you that!  I know that hard days will continue to pop up here and there, and that is normal and to be expected.  But I cannot help but to be slightly irritated with myself when I think back on it, read my post from that day, etc.   I have SO MUCH to be thankful for, and I would really like to focus more on that. It's important to acknowledge the things that are hard for us, the bad days, and then move on from them, and luckily, I've done that this week.  

I hope you're having a wonderful weekend, wherever you are.
What do you look forward to doing as autumn rolls around?






Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Not Each Day Is Easy

I would say the majority of our days here have been fine.  Good, even.  And when there are multiple days like that and I'm feeling like we are finding our groove, it's easy to forget that we are still in the beginning stages of this big change, and not every day is going to be smooth.  I was definitely reminded of this today.  Well really, this week in general.  The fact that I've been in a funk is undeniable.  Henry and I have a pretty established little routine day to day, but I know it's not a long term reflection of what our days will look like, and I'm just getting incredibly anxious to get our plans sorted out.  I think we are both bored on occasion, as we don't see many other people than just each other.  Don't get me wrong, he's my very favorite person in this world to spend time with, but it's hard starting over knowing no one.  It leads us to do the same things over and over again most days, which I don't think he minds quite as much as I do.  But I'm trying to be creative.  I know I'm lucky that we get to be together all day long, even if it is just the two of us most days, and I need to make the most of it because one day we will be busy again. I do not want to whine away in this space, so for tonight I am relaxing, and feeling more positive as I sit here and recharge.  With a glass of wine in hand, I'm searching for more activities to do with Henry, so that his days are full of fun, exploration, and adventure.  I am also dreaming of carving time for activities that center and inspire me. And as always, trying to just continuously work on being content with the now.  I can get so stir crazy, and while I love to wander and explore, I truly want to enjoy the slower days as well.  It's a constant battle for me, enjoying slower paces and not losing sight of patience.  I am a busy person by nature, while I crave a slow day here and there in the midst of incredibly busy days, I thrive in the faster pace.  Right now I'm adjusting to the exact opposite, and am hoping to be patient with myself and those around me while I do.

As always,
thanks for listening.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

The Long Weekend

I was so happy to have a long weekend this past week, because it meant an extra day with Eric free from work, a family get together with some family members I haven't seen in quite a while, and a few outdoor adventures too.  It was so nice to have my sisters and nieces and nephew here too, and I know Henry adored that part.  It was so wild with all of the cousins together that I didn't have time to snap a single picture of the chaos.  My sister had her camera at the ready though, so I'm excited to see the pictures of the whole bunch of goofballs together.  We had a picnic, we went to the park, rode the mini train, fed ducks, and oddly enough the best toy of all was my oldest sisters wedding dress that each babe wanted to try/sit on.  Too cute.
 We decided to take a quiet little trip to the farm (Eric's family's), just the three of us (plus dogs).  It seems Eric's entire family is the most at peace when they're there, and I think Henry feels it too.  He was so excited to see the horses, walk through the tall grasses, pick old dandelions, and sit to soak it all in.  It's refreshing for each one of us to go out there and enjoy the quiet, and now it's one hundred times more special because we get to see Henry explore.  One large reason for moving back was to give Henry that very opportunity that was so special to Eric growing up.  
We grilled the most delicious food on Monday evening, and before we knew it the weekend was over.  I'm not complaining though because in one short day it'll be back again.  I'm hoping to make some delicious tailgating snacks on Saturday, and on Sunday my plan is to bake my first loaf of bread, and a pan of granola bars.  I think it must be the little hints that fall isn't far away that put me in the mood for baking  and cooking. Or maybe just the fact that my creative energy hasn't had much of an outlet recently and it's time to let it out.  

What did you do over the long weekend?








Friday, August 31, 2012

What's In My Bag

It's a long weekend, hooray!! Anyone have some fun plans?  My family is having a little get together tomorrow so it will be fun to see family members from far and wide that I haven't seen for a while.
I love seeing these "What's In My Bag" posts circulating, so please leave me a link if you have one on your blog!


Despite that small pile of random junk on the left, this is pretty good for me.  I generally have a bag FULL of things I don't need, if we're being honest.
From the left-
*Various receipts and coupons.  I try to save receipts for the checkbook, but obviously I don't excel in that department since they're wrinkled in a little ball and spread all over the place.
*Small canvas bag from a little fair trade store in Anchorage called Grassroots.  It's essentially packed with Revlon Lip Butters.  I rarely wear stuff on my lips, but I like having the option to occasionally, and lip butters are my favorite!
*Moleskin planner from Barnes and Noble.  If love the simplicity of this planner.  It's thin, but large enough I have space to write in each day of the month calendar.  I have to have a full month view or I can't keep track of things at all.
*Random tidbits- mini altoids, pens, headbands, etc.
*Fossil wallet.  I love this wallet and got it on mega sale at Nordstrom in Anchorage.
*Lucky Abby Road leather bag.  I pined after this bag for a long time, and decided to look for a used one on ebay.  I lucked out and found one for a great deal, in nice shape and perfectly worn in!  It was the first thing I ever bough off ebay, and I got into a little bidding war winning it in the final 7 seconds.  I made quite the scene over it and kept shouting that "I won"!  Eric reminded me about 10 times that I didn't actually win it, I bought it, but it still felt just as exciting to me.  I love it!

So that's that! Anything fun in your bag?  Something random and hilarious?  I remember finding a newborn sock in my purse months after Henry was born. I finally took it out.
Have a wonderful holiday weekend!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Skin Talk


Good Morning to you!
I've been thinking a lot about my skin lately, and how to better take care of it to make it look its best.
For the last few years my skin has just gotten more and more dull, and I'm not loving it.  I think it was a combination of the dry Alaskan air year round for three years, pregnancy hormones, maybe just being a few years older, losing sleep, who knows.  But I've sort of been on a mission to get it healthy and glowy.
So far there are two things (well, three) that I find are helping, and there's one more thing I'll be trying in the future.

1. Face wash cloths.  I use the dry Olay cloths that you wet and then scrub your face with.  I find that my face gets much cleaner with these than when I use my hands or even a washcloth.  For a while I tried just using my own cloth and some organic cleanser, but for the time being these are what works best for me.  In the future I'll be trying a Clarisonic, which washes the face while exfoliating and I'm looking forward to that.  I hear it makes a world of a difference.

2. Coconut Oil.  Coconut oil is one of those things that has been used for years for skin care, but is now circulating on Pinterest and on blogs and becoming somewhat of a beauty fad.  I usually read about those fads and then just move on, never giving them a try because it's only a matter of time before something else is the new "best thing".  But this seemed worth trying.  Everyone said it's the wonder oil, can be used for basically everything and has great effects on skin.
So I bought a jar of organic coconut oil, and have replaced my moisturizer with it for the last two weeks.  I have to say, I probably won't be going back to regular moisturizer.  You need the smallest amount, it smells, great, and my skin has improved quite a bit in the past two weeks.  Really!  I feel great not putting all kinds of chemicals on my face all night when this works just as well. I've heard that if you have acne prone skin this works well to improve it.  So essentially, it's great for all skin, and a zillion uses.  (eye makeup remover, face wash, etc)  My skin has definitely had a bit more of a healthy glow since using it, and it will be so nice for the whole body during the winter months!

3.BB cream.  Like I said, I'm kind of behind in skin care trends, and a few weeks ago I had no clue what a BB cream was.  It's a cream that moisturizes, improves skin tone, helps blemishes, and provides coverage as well.  So essentially a tinted moisturizer but one that is supposed to actually help your skin not just cover it.  As soon as I heard of it I rushed out to find some.  I wanted to start with something inexpensive from the drug store first, so after reading some reviews I decided on the Garnier BB cream.  I was hesitant because tinted moisturizer has never been my favorite.  While dewy skin is nice, it always makes my face too sticky, and never gives quite enough coverage.  The Garnier one surprised me.  I actually really enjoy it and it makes my face just dewy enough.  I hear the Smashbox Photo Ready one from Sephora is perfect, so I may think of springing for it, but we'll see. For right now I'm really happy with the results from the Garnier one! And it's a quarter of the price, so I'll take it.

So that is what I have for now! I'm much happier with the feel of my skin than I was a few weeks ago, so I'm excited to see what a few more months does.


Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Today.

Ugh.  Today was an interesting day.  I can't say it was a bad day because nothing particularly horrible happened, it was just frustrating.  A day that I giggle about a little bit now, but only because I've already spent enough minutes wanting to just rip my hair out.  You know the type, I'm sure.
After prying Henry's mouth open to examine his gums, I've got it all figured out.  The poor boy is in pain as his last few teeth make their way through.  Of course they save the best (worst) for last.  He's irritable, then happy, then sad, then hates life, then happy, and starts it all over again.  He generally handles the pain pretty well, better than I would I can safely say.  But right now it is giving him this extra bit of attitude, a short fuse, and every minutes is a test of patience for me.
Anyway, today started by waking up early.  Even earlier than yesterday which was earlier than usual.  So he was tired from the get go, but as usual he couldn't possibly consider going back to sleep because he was too excited about breakfast (can't blame him there.) We went to the park and finally met some other parents and babies who happen to be the exact same age.  Henry thought it would be fun to throw sand at all of them, except for one little girl that he hugged and kissed (well he threw sand on her too, actually.)  The more I asked or told him not to, the more he would get this little twinkle in his eye and throw a bit harder.  Great first impression. So we left the park, headed home for lunch which he squeezed all over the place, and then went down for nap.  The boy was lucky when he woke up. Who doesn't love waking up to find that your grandparents are over and have brought delicious pie?  He gobbled up a good portion and then we headed out for the dog park, just Henry, Finn-dog, and me.  We had such a great time playing.  But I looked away for one second, and when I looked up he was squatting and playing with something... I thought "oh please let that be a leaf", though I knew better... I got closer to find that indeed, he was squeezing a fresh log of dog poop between his fingers. Just really digging in. (Enter gag)  There's no time to be a germaphobic freak when you're a parent and alone with your child.  I couldn't avoid touching his hand like I would have liked to.  I had to wear the big girl pants and carry him off making sure he didn't touch his face, and find somewhere to wash it off.  Dog water seemed to be my only option so we rinsed in that, and then used sanitizing wipes in the car.  I've decided to just not think about it, or I'll dwell on the grossness of it all.  I'm sure he'll do it again 234987 times in his childhood, so I had better get used to it now!
And with that, happy Wednesday to all. :)

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Pudding For Breakfast!

Everyone has been raving about the tiny nutrition-packed seeds, chia seeds, lately.  Thanks to sites like Pinterest, there are constantly more ideas for ways to use them and incorporate them into your diet floating around the internet.  I hesitated to write about them here since I don't want to simply repeat what everyone is already saying, but they're worth the mention I think.
Like flax seeds (which we use often in all sorts of foods), chia seeds pack a lot in their tiny little selves.  They are rich in fiber and necessary omega-3 fatty acids, as well as antioxidants.  Sounds like something we can all get behind, yeah?  My favorite thing is that they are so tiny that they're easy to put in essentially anything.  Sprinkled in smoothies, on top of salads, in pancakes, etc.  You'll barely notice them.  I have been seeing loads of recipes for chia seed pudding, and I thought I'd give it a shot.  When soaked in liquid they absorb it and create a gelatinous pudding, much like tapioca.  I don't really love tapioca pudding, but I wasn't going to let it stop me from trying, and even when I don't like something I try to still offer it to Henry because he often does like it (like beans!) Anyway, I used this recipe from Deliciously Organic as a starting off point, but my measurements were different because I just wanted to use my whole can of milk :)  
It was literally the fastest and easiest thing I've ever made.  Much easier than even just instant pudding which is packed full of sugar.
I used:
1 can of light coconut milk (2 cups).  I've heard a lot of people use soy milk, almond milk, etc. 
1/2 cup chia seeds (the whole seeds not the milled ones)
That is seriously all that you need, unless you'd like to sweeten/flavor it a bit.  You can either add something at this point (I used a little bit of vanilla, and a squirt of agave nectar), or just keep it plain and top with something later.  
I've read about using cocoa powder, fruit, maple syrup, etc.  But I really loved the simple vanilla with a tiny bit of sweetness from the agave. 
Anyway, just stir it together, and put it in the fridge!  It is probably thick enough to eat after only a few hours, but we left ours over night and Henry ate it for breakfast this morning along with his Morningstar sausage patty (I know, those things together make a weird breakfast... whatever works.)

Baby-tot loved it and I did also (he's still walking around with random seeds glued to his face!)  I'm excited to experiment a little more with these little seeds.  If you have a way you love to use them, please share in the comments below!



Monday, August 13, 2012

When The Change Is A Little Hard.

It's been a busy few days (well, months) so it feels good to sit for a minute and write.
We are still trucking along over here, essentially starting over and just trying to find our groove.  I've found myself feeling confused this past week.  About work and how much time I want/ am able to put toward that, where I'll work in general, school, and how to balance my time while accomplishing the things I want to.  It's harder than I thought it would be.  I have to get the coursework done, I need to reach the zillion hours required to take the IBCLC exams, I need to earn some sort of income, and I need for my main focus to be on Henry.  So figuring all of that out and how it makes sense here and where to do it all has been a little bit of a stressful challenge.  I find myself just wishing I could run back to my old job (I knew it would be the case) and am missing it quite badly.  Spending my time being sad about that though isn't helping anything here, so from here on out I will try my hardest to focus more on all of the things here that help me to feel like we made the best decision we could by moving.  I expected this all to be a hard adjustment, as we had a good life there and a good family of friends.  Expecting it doesn't necessarily help in the moment though, so little reminders of why we are here are helpful.
I know we made a good choice because:
*Henry is so happy already.  He has had zero problems adjusting and I am so thankful for that.  He loves the activities we've been doing, he loves our house and is entirely comfortable here.  He is seeing his grandparents a lot whether we have dinner together, have a date at the children's museum, or just run into each other at the grocery store.  He loves every bit of it.
*We love seeing more family.  It doesn't matter that we are adults, it is still comforting to know that our parents are near by.  We all give each other plenty of space but it's nice to know they're all just across town, and we love seeing them. Also, Henry has more cousins just two hours away and it has been so much fun to see them together!  I love knowing I won't have to miss important events anymore.
*We also get to see old friends
*We are already planning some trips and it's amazing to know we can pack up in the car and go somewhere.  We couldn't do that in Alaska and it was a difficult thing for us.
*Groceries are cheaper, we love that!
*Eric works from an office at home now, and it's really nice seeing him when he pops out through the day for a few minutes.  We also get to all eat breakfast together because he goes to work a bit later due to time difference between here and Alaska. It's nice for now :)

It's strange being back in my hometown but feeling so differently now.  I went away as a fresh out of high school student and came back as a family, so it's like a new place but I keep thinking of those previous years. Does that make sense? I think when we adjust it will be the perfect place for us, we'll carve out our little space here. Here's hoping that time comes soon.

Happy Henry loves it here!


Wednesday, August 8, 2012

A slightly new look

Ah, it feels refreshing to get that header off my blog.  It has driven me nuts for months but I just haven't had the time or know-how to change it to what I really want; what I feel like represents me and what this blog is. For now, I'm just keeping it incredibly simple, and when I have someone who knows what they're doing design what I have in mind, I'll change it once again.  I'm feeling so much better just looking at the simple title.   Nap time is nearly over and so I only have a few more minutes to pine after home ideas on Pinterest. I know, excellent use of free time...right?

Check That Off The List!

I bought an antique high chair for Henry that I found on Craigslist for $25.  I had always wanted a painted wooden chair for him, but it didn't make much sense to buy one before moving so I waited and waited.  It was the first thing I looked for as we were moving back, and I was happy enough with the one we found.  $25 seemed like a good price for something that could go in any direction I wanted and would be in our home for years.
I originally planned to make it a really bright green or orange, and that was my plan until the very morning when I went to get paint.  I wanted something fun and toddlerish, and less "baby colored", but apparently I changed my mind in the few minutes it took to get to the hardware store.  I ended up picking a light lime green color, and figure that I'll make some bright cushions to go with it in the near future to brighten it up.  For now I'm leaving it, but who knows, maybe I'll take this whole project on again later!  
Color: "Soft Lime"
I sanded the entire thing by hand which was a little fun since I haven't done much sanding before, but was also a giant pain because of all the little nooks in the wood.  It took me about a nap time and a half to get that part done before putting the first coat of paint on!
I knew from the start I wanted to use a non toxic paint since Henry would be eating off of it.  I went to a few stores and at the first I was told that after the paint or enamel dried, there would be essentially no chemical risk.  It was comforting I guess, but I just felt better about picking a non toxic brand.  I only needed a little bit, so it wasn't too expensive.
It took about three coats of paint, and it was complete!  Since I went for a lighter color I will be on the lookout for bright fabric for cushions, but for now we are enjoying it as is!  It feels really good to check one of my projects off of the list.  Next up, gallery wall in the living room and painting the playroom!




Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Baby Friends

We miss our Alaska friends.  Of course Eric and I miss our grown up friends like crazy, but tonight I'm missing this little guy.  



That's Henry's best little buddy, B boy. They are 4 days apart and have been together constantly from the very day they "met" (1 and 5 days old).  These past few months things had gotten really fun as they started to truly enjoy each other's company.  They played like brothers- getting into things together, giggling, kissing each other, swatting at each other when they didn't feel like sharing, etc.   I know they're just tiny and it's harder on us since we are the ones who can remember all of their time together, but that's exactly what it is, hard.  I miss this little friend for him, I miss holding one on each hip and watching them interact and grow up together.  We will all stay in touch and see each other as often as possible but I know things won't be the same when they grow up thousands of miles apart.  If I could choose for certain things to not change, these two together would have been one of them.  M and J, give that boy of yours a squeeze for us, and a smooch from Henry.