Tuesday, February 28, 2012


We wanted Riley to "announce" the news, but she just wanted to eat it. I guess she didn't get the import of the sign. Or did she?...

Casper, the friendly ghost? Not a name possibility, just a comparison.

Riley's sign privileges revoked.

Belly: 19 weeks

The image that prompted Dave to quote Homer Simpson, "It's a boy! And what a boy!"

Lovely to see you little guy! See you again in July!

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Ah Ha!

Since Riley came along, I have had several 'ahha' moments - answers that have eluded me forever are finally shining through. Here's a sample:
1) Why did Mom almost never get a babysitter, often forfeiting her sanity to her eight kids?
2) Why did she cross her ankles and collapse at the hips when she sneezed?
3) Why did she stay home when Dad took us to the movies?
4) Why was there always a stack of parenting books on her nightstand when she could have written her own?
5) Why did Dad do the round up every morning and evening for family prayer/scripture study?

Answers (at least, what my own experience suggests might be the answers)
1) Previously, I thought maybe it was the money or not wanting to impose on others but now...I think it is more to do with worrying that no one knows their needs like you do, which could be miserable for child and sitter. Also, I have no practice being away from Riley so when I am I'm still in care-mode: I hear a noise that sounds like her and for a split second think, "Is Riley crying/hungry/tired..." Even at the movies this happens.
2) Because now that you've birthed a big ole baby, when you sneeze if you don't relax your abs completely and cross you legs you might pee your pants. This also makes trampolines their own kind of torture. And laughing too hard...
3) Time alone to nap or read or do whatever you please is golden. Plus, it gives you a chance to miss them: I'm always super happy to see Dave and Riley coming home to me.
4) Because being a parent is a huge job you want to do right. For stay-at-homes like me it is your whole life, so those books are what interest you.
5) Parents want to prepare their children to live their own lives and be happy, and Dad wanted us to know what was most important: having a family and gospel-centered life. They both did. Did they succeed? As Dad says, "The jury's still out on each of us," but I think we all know that family and God come first. I'm so so glad that growing up I always had the comfort of knowing that my questions had answers, if I asked and listened, that there was a purpose behind everything, that I was loved by my family and by a Heavenly Father, and a lot of other truths that make all the difference. Those scriptures we read as a family taught to love, not hate, have faith, not doubt, be valiant and strong and true, and that God has an infinite supply of all that is good. I've rewritten this paragraph five times trying to say what I feel without boring or offending, There is, after all, a lot to be said about truth. I guess what I want to say is, I get it, Mom and Dad. I appreciate the foundation and anchor you provided us. Life is meaningful and happy. Thank you!
Picture of the first 6 of us 8 kids, probably right before church. Starting from the top left, Angie, Andrea, Lora, Jon, Me, and Danny. How Mom had time to snap a picture after getting us all ready for church is a mystery yet to be answered. I guess having us all so happy in church dress was too exciting to pass up.
And guess what Riley did while I was writing this! Seriously?!
She rolled over to my open scriptures and started eating them. And so the challenge begins. :)

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Day of Love

There sure are a lot of scrooges when it comes to Valentines Day. I sure have heard a lot of, "Its just commercialization...people should show love EVERY day not just once a year...Single-awareness day...etc, etc." Good thing I have a soap box, I mean blog, so that my highly perturbed self may express an opposing view once in a while.
I have been single for every Valentines Day up till I met Dave two years ago and I have always loved Valentines Day. Growing up it meant parties at school and exchanges and Mom's special heart-shaped shortbread cookies frosted with pink icing. In high school I got flowers from a "Secret Admirer" (i.e. my mom, which I figured out when the office ladies said they came from someone who 'loved me more than anyone in the world.' Yeah, good cover, office ladies.) I've gone out with friends and roommates on Valentines, given out paper hearts and candy, eaten probably my body weight in delicious chocolate and watched countless cheesy flicks that left me all warm and fuzzy. I'm so glad I never spent one alone and grumpy, but rather celebrated with loved ones, even with no lover to speak of. Like everything else, it is what you make it. If a person wanted to use it to make a point about independence or loneliness, sad day for them! I get that holidays mean more to some people than others, but don't be a hater. Or at least save the hate for something like starvation or abuse.
I'm glad there is a day for the world to revere and celebrate together that most beautiful, most motivating force that we call love. One more cliche for the road: if you are looking for the bad, you will find it. Make it two: happiness is a choice.
While I was typing this, Riley was 'dancing' next to me. She is a joy.

Riley update: She has 2 teeth now! Last week she had none, yesterday she had 1, and today 2. We now know how to tell when one is coming: she can't sleep the night before :(
Also, Sunday when I came in the room she said "mama" and reached for me! It was a thrilling moment. Don, Suzette and Dave witnessed it. I think our excitement might have scared her off a bit - she hasn't done it since. When Riley was a month old I told Dave that while I adored her, I did not feel like a Mom yet. Dave suggested that might come when she started calling us Mom and Dad. Hearing 'mama' from her really did melt me on the spot. I could get used to that.
Dave is awesome, in a word. He is loving and kind and funny and when I'm crazy he knows just what to say to give me some perspective and make me feel better. I'm lucky to have him. Today I woke up to this lovely surprise:
He said the monster was to remind me of him while he was at work. The unibrow looks nothing like him though. Riley has thoroughly enjoyed the balloon. It is no longer whole.

One last note:
To balance all the chocolate I've eaten I made the a green smoothie today. It contained spinach, strawberries, blueberries, banana, and almond. It looks like puke but was surprisingly tolerable.

Thanks to Lora for the hand-held blender - smoothie-making is so easy now that I have no excuse. Since vitamins make me sick when I'm pregnant, I really need the nutrients. Its a good feeling to do the body a favor with some tlc.
The end.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Can't Get Enough of this BABY!

I think my sense of humor may have...broadened as I've been a stay-at-home mommy. It now includes head ducking, blowing raspberries, laughing for no reason, all kinds of potty humor, etc. I just can't help it - I think everything she does is hilarious/clever/tender and video-worthy.

This next video, probably don't watch if you have only two minutes left to live - wouldn't want you to waste it (a good part of the video is actually filming the ceiling). But I include it anyways as it has some daddy footage in it, which is gold to me. I sure do love them.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Baby Babble

I wonder if she thinks this is what we sound like?
So far no 'mama's or 'dada's, but we are working on it.
What I'm really hoping is that she learns to crawl soon, and then walk before Baby2 arrives. And it would be great if she could be potty trained, and could change other baby's diapers too. Oh boy, it is going to be interesting having two babies, but I'm glad they will be close in age and can entertain one another. We had some other babies and their moms over this week to play and it was hilarious, watching them smoosh each others' faces and go after each others' toys.
Baby2 is finally making him/herself known! I'm only 16 weeks along but I felt a few kicks last night. We could do a gender check ultrasound now but I think we will wait till March, when there is a routine ultrasound scheduled.
Dave and I are doing good. Dave has a baseball game on Saturday so we are hoping for nice weather so we can go pretend it is spring already. The veiw from our porch is beautiful but I wouldn't mind if winter were over.

Hey at least January is over! I love February! And Valentine's Day. Mmm, chocolate...