raising a mommy

raising a mommy

Sunday, June 30, 2013

our weekend in pictures

Today's blessing:
Sunshine and being outside.
Nearly all day.

What a gorgeous weekend, friends. I really don't think the weather could have been better. My in-laws have a cabin up north, so we decided to take a few days and relax up there. (By "a few days" I mean really just one day. This mama had to work until 4:00 on Friday, and we figured it would be easiest to make the drive home during nap time, so that meant leaving today at noon. But it was still nice!) Here's a little taste of our weekend:
Driving the boat with Ong Noi! (Vietnamese for Grandpa) She was just getting used to the life jacket. She was not a fan!

Miss Independent wanted to drive herself!
Playing in the garden

Wagon rides with her new boyfriend. Yes, he is holding onto her foot.

How cute, right?

Strawberry shortcake...probably one of the greatest desserts ever.

Back home and swimming in her elephant pool

And finally, enjoying her new toy. Completely ridiculous and unnecessary? Absolutely! But apparently that's what grandparents are for. And you really can't argue...she sure is cute in there!

Friday, June 28, 2013

fmf: in between

Here are the rules:
1. Write for 5 minutes flat for pure unedited love of the written word.
2. Link back to Lisa Jo Baker's blog with the rest of the Five Minute Friday-ers.
3. Comment on the person who linked up before you.

Please join us!

Today's prompt: In Between


I am currently living in the "in between." In six weeks, I will be done with my current job. (Sad day!) Two weeks after that, I will be moving to a new place - a new town, a new home - where I know no one. Exciting? Absolutely! Scary? A little...

I am fortunate enough to have an automatic network when I move. My husband will be the intern pastor at some churches down there, and we will be thrown into a brand new culture. I grew up in a smallish town (about 10,000 people). Husband has never lived outside of the big city. Moving to Farmland, USA, is going to be quite a change for both of us...the pace of life, having to drive 20 minutes to go anywhere, being surrounded by fields and wind farms and openness...amazing...

Now, I have to figure out how to live in the in between. How to enjoy the rest of my time here, to stay invested in my relationships, to not check out before I leave. All of this while packing up our home, planning for a new start, thinking about new job opportunities (or staying home with baby opportunities...), and dreaming about a four bedroom home...


Five Minute Friday

Friday, June 21, 2013

fmf: rhythm

Today's prompt: Rhythm


First, this post is probably going to be significantly shorter than my other fmf posts, because rhythm is a difficult word to type. Also, I'm going on not a whole lot of sleep. Why? Well, I do have a 16 month old daughter. The little dear decided that she didn't really want to sleep last night, so she was up from about 12:30 until 4:00 or so. I am lucky enough to have the greatest husband ever, who took the 1:30-3:30 shift so I could get a little more sleep and be somewhat awake for work this morning, but still...motherhood is hard!

I guess I thought that by the time she was this age I would have my rhythm. I would be in a routine: wake up, snuggle, go to work, come home, snuggle, magically have dinner on the table without any prep time so I don't miss out on my snuggle/play time, spend 10 minutes cleaning up, snuggle, play, bedtime. Right? That's how it goes?

While I'm still struggling to find my rhythm and get everything down, I have figured out a few things. The dirty dishes can stay for one more night. Yes, the pile will be a little bigger tomorrow, but so will P. Laundry can sit in the hamper for another hour on Saturday so I can play in the sand box until nap time.  In the last few weeks (days? hours? seconds? I can't really tell anymore!) my baby has turned from a baby into a toddler, or maybe, dare I say it, even a little girl. She's becoming more independent (and she was always a do-it-myself kind of girl). She can climb
and entertain herself
and attempt to put her shoes and clothes on.
Her proportions are changing and she doesn't even look like a baby anymore.

It's a little lot scary.

Yes, finding balance and the right rhythm is important, but it's not going to happen overnight. It might not even happen over 16 months. Maybe two years. Maybe three. Maybe I'll get into my rhythm just in time for the next kid to throw it all off. Then I'll start all over again and remind myself to cherish every smile and cry and yogurt smeared face (and hand and belly, because she refuses to let us feed her and hasn't quite mastered the spoon!). Yes, even those 4:00 am smiles are beautiful.


Okay, so I went a little longer than five minutes today. It was just flowing, so I wasn't about to stop! The pictures were added after because, well, they're really cute! Moms, I'd love to hear what helped you find your rhythm...leave a comment and help this new mommy out!

Five Minute Friday

Monday, June 17, 2013

swimming swimming!

Today's blessing:
Cute reusable swim diapers with ruffles on the butt.

Yes, that's right, my baby girl started swimming lessons today, and boy was she cute in the Disney Princess swimsuit we got as a hand-me-down from who knows who! It took some getting used to, but by the end of the half hour, I dare say she was even having fun. It certainly helped that there were rubber duckies floating around the pool for us to chase.

I am ashamed to say that I don't have a single picture from this evening. I was in the water with her, and Dad didn't want to be that weird dad who hangs around the edge of the pool with a camera. (Really, I can't blame him!) Turns out, P and I were the odd ones out by not having our paparazzi hovering! You'll have to settle for some shots of our weekend adventures in the elephant kiddie pool from Great Aunt Yogi!
See the ruffled butt? How cute is that!

Getting used to the water
Tune in next week, and maybe we'll have pictures from the actual lessons!

Saturday, June 15, 2013

fmf: listen

Today's prompt: Listen


I have yet to discover a better way to wake up than to listen to my baby girl toddler babbling in her crib. Hearing random words interjected into syllables of nonsense babbling makes my morning, even if it is 5:00 am. "Doo da baby puppy ack ba goo goo up mommy bee ba!" I could listen for hours. Except that it usually only lasts a few minutes before she's done talking to herself and is ready for some human interaction. And that's fine with me! As much fun as it is to listen to her babble, it's way more fun to listen to her talking to me. "Mama up!" or "Honey, honey, mommy, honey!" are some of my favorite sounds. Yes, that's right. She calls me honey. Hubby and I have decided that we need to be more intentional about calling each other mom and dad. Though it is pretty darn cute to hear her little 16 month old voice calling me honey! I guess it goes to show just how much she listens to what is going on around her. She really does pick up words at an alarming rate!


I realize it's not actually Friday anymore, but between work, a wedding, and family visiting yesterday, the blog kind of got neglected. Better late than never, right?

Five Minute Friday

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

our baby girl: 16 months

I've decided that it's a good time for me to start doing monthly updates. We'll be moving in a couple months, and I'm sure there is a person or two who will want to know what the little monkey is up to! (There are also some pretty important people who currently live far away who I'm sure would appreciate the updates!) Plus, what mama doesn't want an excuse to brag about her kid? Here is P's 16 month update:

Mastered Skills (most kids can do)
Turns the pages of a book: Absolutely. Usually before all the words have been read. She's not the most patient child!
Has temper tantrums when frustrated: Not really. When she gets upset, she usually says "owie" and whines a little, and that's about it. Unless she's really tired, then all bets are off!
Becomes attached to a soft toy or other object: Yes, but it changes daily. Sometimes it's baby, sometimes it's Elmo, sometimes it's blankie. There's not really any one "lovey."

Emerging Skills (half of children can do)
Discovers joys of climbing: She's a pro at the climbing part. It's the getting back down part that she hasn't quite mastered. She's good at asking for help, though!
Stacks three bricks: She tries to stack her Duplo blocks on top of each other. Now I'm thinking we should dig her blocks out of her toy box!
Learns the correct way to use common objects (e.g. the telephone): Pretty much everything is used as a telephone: toy hammers, rattles, books, graham crackers...but yes, also telephones!

Advanced Skills (a few children can do)
Takes off one piece of clothing by herself: Shirt, socks, and shoes. She hasn't figured out how to remove the pants, but that's quite alright!
Gets fussy about food: She's pretty easy to feed. She loves most fruits and veggies, crackers, cheese, milk and water...and of course, cookies and cake!
Switches from two daytime naps to one: HAHAHAHA! I don't think she's taken two naps since she was about nine months, if then...

Other things you might want to know:
-She has slept through the night three times in the last week, but I don't have high hopes that it will stick.
-She's up to eight teeth, and we don't mind at all that she's taking her time!
-She loves running with mommy, playing in her sandbox, chasing birds, and doing pretty much anything outside.

I would share a word list with you, but there are too many to list. Instead, I'll share words that we now try to avoid saying, because when she says them, they sound like something else:

In short, she is clearly one special kid - pretty much a genius on all levels.

Yogurt as finger food
We haven't quite mastered the spoon yet...
But she is a pro at the slide! Daddy's only there for moral support. She doesn't actually need any help.
Apparently she's ready for something that mom and dad are not ready for.

The girl loves cookies. Can you blame her?
My hubby and I celebrated our fifth anniversary at the end of May. We went up to the North Shore for a few days and only managed to get one family picture at Gooseberry Falls. You can sort of see the falls in the left corner. P absolutely loved it!

Sunday, June 9, 2013

unplugging myself

Today's blessing:
Being called out by a 16 month old.

My child just said "Hello?" into her Graham cracker. For as much as she tries to turn everything into a phone, you'd think we have the things glued to our ears! Really, we don't spend all that much time talking on the phone. Personally, I really don't like doing it. I do like talking to my mom, and I enjoy the occasional long catch up conversation with an old friend I haven't seen in awhile, but for the most part, I'd rather not.

In spite of this, I somehow manage to waste a sickening amount of time on my phone. The allure of stupid games is really what gets me. I like to "build" things...cities, restaurants, bakeries... I like to start with an empty slate and slowly build it up to my ideal. I'm not talking about hours at a time - just five minutes here, twenty minutes there. There's something satisfying about it to me.

Why? When I look at the little person in front of me, and I realize that she, too, is a blank slate. She is waiting to be developed and nurtured and formed into a loving, life-embracing child. I don't want her to have her nose buried in electronics. She should be running outside and chasing birds, and she should have her mommy right there with her. Helping her learn how to climb up her slide is way more rewarding than reaching a new level with my city. I can unwind at night with a good book or a new crochet project, just like I used to before I had the fancy phone. Yes, I have wasted enough time building virtual cities and restaurants and lives. They are gone and have been replaced with real life - with more chasing around the yard, more trips up and down the stairs just for practice, more slobbery macaroni and cheesey mashed potato-y high fives from the high chair. I'll invest my time in real life, thank you very much!

 Note the lovely blobs of mashed potatoes both on her nose and the side of her face...

Did I mention spaghetti sauce-y? This girl knows how to enjoy meal time!

I am proud to say that P is raising a mommy who is plugging herself in to real life, and is looking forward to every minute of it!