Thursday, September 23

Ain't Life Beautiful?

One of my college besties got married last weekend in possibly the most beautiful part of this great state I've ever seen. It was at a golf resort off a gravel road in Nowheresville, Iowa, complete with a lake, cabins, outdoor shelter and ATV trails. In lieu of a formal dance-style reception, the bride and groom opted for a bonfire and hayrack ride under the bright autumn stars. It was so serene.

The leaves have just started to turn and their wedding colors complimented the landscape perfectly. I was especially excited for this wedding because Kara told me several times that it was inspired by Charlie and I's wedding, right down to the pastor and our wine box ceremony.

She was right -- it was great and just my style. Also, if I do say so myself, I captured some great pictures! I think in my next life I may be a photographer. The one photo I missed that I wish I could have captured was Nora sleeping by the fire at the end of the night.

Congrats Kara and Jayden!

(Click photos to enlarge)

Thursday, September 16

Turning Two

At this time two years ago, I was sitting at my desk anxiously awaiting my afternoon ultrasound. Little did I know that a mere 10 hours later I'd be holding my little girl. It seems so long ago, and yet it's hard to believe so much time has passed. Look how much she's grown in one year!

Per tradition, we started our day with pancakes. She even blew out her own candles this time!

Lately, her favorite color is pink, though she can point out pink, red, blue, green, purple, yellow and black.

She can count to 10 with help, and to 5 by herself.

She is becoming very independent and rarely wants help with anything.

Her favorite toys are dolls -- she loves to mother them.

She is a sponge and will repeat anything you say. The other day I was telling Charlie something from the other room. He kept saying what, and I kept repeating myself. Finally, in frustration, I asked "Are your ears broken?" Nora went over to him with a look of concern, patted him on the back and said, "Daddy. Ears broken? Ears. Broken? K?"

We are still tumbling. At class just yesterday, she did her sommersault all by herself. She loves class, the kids and Miss Kelli.

School is going well. It's so, so, so much better than daycare. You can tell she loves it by the way she endearingly waves bye and pushes us out the door when we drop her off and then cries when we come to pick her up :( What's worse, a daycare she hates or a school she loves more than her parents?! On a related note, we just got our first fundraiser for school. We're selling Enjoy the City books for $20. It's jam-packed with BOGO coupons for QC-area restaurants, clubs, plays, shows, attractions and so much more! If you buy 5, you get a 6th free. Make great gifts! Let me know if you're interested!!

Bear's offical birth celebration is going to be Sunday at 4 p.m. at our house. Charlie and I have been working on something really great -- can't wait to debut it!

Thursday, September 9

The End

It has finally happened. It's been about a month since N last nursed, and at last she has stopped asking for it. We shared 23 (mostly) beautiful months, but admittedly I'm not really sad to move on.

It was a physical and emotional journey, and in the end, I'm so glad it happened and lasted as long as it did but I was definitely ready to be done. I can't really put into words how my feelings toward breastfeeding have grown and evolved in the past two years.

I have a new found respect for women who are brave enough to fight the fight for nursing mamas. I feel a duty to acknowledge those who are giving their babes natures best, and tell them to keep it up. I don't judge those who use formula, but I certainly encourage those who don't. Some say it's a personal decision, I think it's a communities responsibility to make sure new mamas aren't throwing in the towel for the wrong reasons. Education, public acceptance and support systems are seriously lacking, and it's really a shame. I can only hope that other mothers are able to find what they need to press on -- it will be worth it!

Silly Kid

"Helping" me bake


O.M.G. Funniest thing. I wanted to get a pic of her on her bench but she wouldn't look at me so finally, in an effort to grab her attention, I said "HEY" really loud and it startled her so much she flew off the bench sideways. We both laughed hysterically.

Mama-daughter love

Daddy playing with food

Dad and Bear's first day of school!



Wearing mamas socks as leg warmers