Thursday, May 29, 2008

Claira is 7 months old

Well, Claira is nearly 7 months old. The official day is Saturday. Finally, I've got a month that actually has 31 days, and I'm updating her sooner than that anyway. We're leaving to go to Indiana bright and early tomorrow morning so I took photos of her today. She's mastered a lot of things this past month. We started solids...rice cereal, peas, and squash so far. She's tried out the sippy cup, and even though she doesn't actually drink too much of it. She is starting to get the hang of it. She's a pro at sitting up on her own now. She'll drop toys and lean over to pick them back up without losing her balance at all. Her favorite toys are the Fisher Price Baby Grand Piano...she starts playing music as soon as we sit her in front of it, and her face just lights up. She also loves the Fisher Price Laugh and Learn Birdbath. It's actually a hand me down from Elsie that I brought out for Claira to play with about a week ago. There are little shape "veggies" around the base of the toy that the baby can pick up to play with. I watched her bat at them for a few days, but she figured out pretty quickly that she can get them out of their little nestled spots and taste them! She has also really gotten into books this past month. Usually, there are at least a couple of times a day that I've got both girls sitting in my lap for storytime. Claira is no longer satisfied to listen and look at the pictures...she has to be holding a book herself or she gets quite upset about it. So we searched out some of the tiny board books, and they're keeping her happy.
Looking forward, I know there's a lot more to come in the next few months...scooting, crawling, pulling up, standing, cruising, and walking. I'm in no hurry for all of that though! She gets sweeter everyday, and I'm still amazed at how much one child can differ from the other. Ultimately, I've got two very sweet girls to spend my days with, and I don't know that I could ask for more.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

My Sweet Claira

During my Crate & Barrel adventure, I also made a pit-stop at Joann's to buy some muslin for a photo background. It's wrinkled, and I haven't done anything with it yet, but someone was asking about it so I'm posting these here. They are SOOC, and Claira was less than cooperative...she kept grabbing a fistful of muslin and eating it!

I love a long weekend.

I know, I know...who doesn't love a long weekend? I certainly enjoy it. We got a lot of things around the house done, errands were completed, family time was enjoyed, and we got to relax. It's not every weekend that all of those things get accomplished. Actually, most weekends I feel like we don't get to sit still for long at all because we're so busy, especially during the summer.

Anyway, much of Saturday was spent running shopping, getting the oil changed, etc. I went to Crate and Barrel in search of large coffee mugs and found some! The last time we had small group at our house, everyone was somewhat disappointed that we didn't have coffee in the house. Jason drinks tea, and I occasionally like to add some coffee to my creamer, but I stay away when I'm pregnant or nursing. Anyway, we've got about 3 large, mismatched coffee mugs. It's hard to find large, 20 oz. Last week, I finally found 20 oz. coffee mugs online at Crate&Barrel so I took a drive there to pick some out. Big, white mug...perfect! Now, I need to order some coffee for our Keurig, and the small group groupies will be happy.

On Sunday, Pastor Mike preached about the power of our testimony and how it can serve to increase our faith. Also, he added that by reminding ourself of our testimony often, it'll be easy to share when given the opportunity because it's something we really know well, and we won't have to think about the details. Anyway, I don't think I've actually shared the testimony of how I got saved so it's on my To Do List. Maybe next week.

We did share our testimonies at small group after church. It never ceases to amaze me how God seems to pick people from different areas and bring them together to form a congregation of people to love, worship, seek, and follow Him. Everyone has a story about how they found our church. Telling my own story and listening to the stories of others really showed me how important it is to know your story but also to know the stories of those around you. God calls people to churches. That's something Jason and I have believed for quite awhile, but it's really so true. God has a spot for you. In many cases, He has it all carved out just right and is waiting for you to enter in. How Great is our God!

Okay, I'm reeling myself back in...I'll share soon, I promise. I made baked beans for small group on Sunday, and apparently I'm about the only person in the whole world who doesn't like them. Who knew? They were a smash hit, practically all of them were eaten, and I must make them again. Anyway, when we pulled back into our driveway afterwards, I asked Jason if he would get the beans. Elsie piped up from the backseat, "I'm not the beans! I'm the pie!" It was so funny. She's been Elsie Pie since she was in the womb, it just stuck, and sometimes we just call her Pie or Sweet Pie. I found it hilarious that she thought I was calling her Beans!

On Monday, we just hung out around the house. Jason, Elsie, and I went outside to play on the swingset while Claira napped inside. It was a bit too windy for her. Elsie would not slow down enough for a decent picture...Surprise, surprise. But, here are some of her on the go.

Claira, lounging with Daddy after her nap:

Later in the evening, we went back outside to grill and Aunt Angel and Uncle Mitch stopped by to visit. They are so much fun to have around. Elsie always keeps both of them running around with her, especially Mitch. We were flying kites, blowing bubbles, taking wagon rides, tossing a frisbee, and playing Drive thru using the wagon as a car. Please excuse the blurry bubble picture and remind me to show Jason how to switch my camera to Auto. To his credit, he also took the photo of Claira.

Monday evening, Claira tried squash for the first time, and she was not happy about it at all. She cried, wailed, spit squash at us, and pleaded, "bub, bub, bub!" until we gave in and put the squash away. We tried again last night, and she did much better. She doesn't like it as much as peas...she's quite a bit messier with the squash, but she did finish it, so that's major progress.

Obviously, she isn't used to the flash! I scared the fussing right out of her with it!

Friday, May 23, 2008

Yay for a holiday!

Last weekend, we bought a hummingbird feeder to hang in the tree in our backyard. All week long, Elsie's been asking when the "honeybirds" are coming. We haven't seen any yet...I have a feeling that the shopping center being built about 100 feet from our backyard might have something to do with it...

Elsie has kept busy this week playing dressup and being mommy to her many dolls. On any given day, you can easily find her lining up 7 or 8 dolls across the couch and tucking them in. They each have to have their own blanket, and she takes time to feed all of them and change all of their diapers. Let me tell you, 8 kids go through a lot of diapers and they spit up a lot! It cracks me up how realistic she gets with them, burping them, comforting them, getting them dressed, and singing them lullabies. She's going to be a great mommy one day.

In the meantime, she's still happy fighting with her 6 month old sister over teething rings. What would a 3 year old want with a teething ring, you ask? I have NO clue.

In Claira news, she's babbling up a storm...and actually slept for 6 hours straight last night! I did a double take when she woke up at 6 a.m. this morning. If she keeps this up, I'll be one very spoiled mama.

Jason should be home any minute now, and I'm thrilled to have a long weekend with him! Our regular weekends get filled up rather quickly. Jason attends men's prayer on Saturday mornings, and this Sunday we have church and small group so add the regular grocery shopping, household chores, and just taking care of the girls doesn't always leave us with a sizable amount of good family time or do nothing time. Hopefully, we'll be able to get done everything we need to by Sunday evening so we can do nothing but enjoy our little family on Monday. That would be a perfect weekend. Actually, next week Jason has off Monday and Friday. A week from today, we'll be visiting family in Indiana and bringing my Mom back to Illinois with us. I'm really looking forward to seeing everyone and to getting my Mom all to myself! Well, not all to myself since I'm sure Elsie would raise a ruckus about that.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Baby Ballerina

I took some photos of Miss Claira yesterday...Elsie said, "NO! I doesn't want my picture, Mommy!" So, there are none of her...turkey girl. She's about as cooperative as a bear when it comes to posing for the camera lately. She's much too busy to be bothered by something as silly as a photo. I'd call her a diva, but I'm sure they'd jump at the chance to document their beauty on film, i.e.-my memory card.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Just keep swimming, just keep swimming

My two sweet girls have me on my toes today...I feel like I've spent half the day breaking up their arguments...that's right, they're driving each other fussy. Claira is definitely at the stage where she wants to play with EVERYTHING in sight. Cameras, remote controls, phones, and any toy her big sister waves in front of her. 99 times out of 100, Elsie is completely not cool with Claira playing with whatever she's got.

Over the weekend, Elsie went to Target with me and wanted "a horse that talks like Miss Kim has." She spotted it at the Dollar Spot as soon as we walked in the door. $1 for a happy 3 year old was a good price to me so the horse came home with us. He's been a constant companion to her since then. What hasn't been fun is that Elsie likes to have him "neigh" at Claira. So, she waves the horse in front of Claira's face in an effort to make her giggle, and Claira's baby reflex kicks in. She reaches for the horse, Elsie pulls it back, looks at me and asks, "Is it fine?" Go figure. The one time she wants to share with her baby sister, I've got the horses bottom side and the words "MADE IN CHINA" staring me in the face. "No," I respond as I try to explain to my 3 year old that it's likely a $1 toy made in China has lead paint on it and we don't want Claira to get sick by chewing on it. Despite the many recent recalls for products made in China, I didn't sort out and toss every toy we own that was made in China. But, better safe than sorry, right? Poor Claira.

Tonight, Elsie and I are going on a mission to find some baby doll diapers for her baby dolls. I'm hoping WalMart sells some...anyone know? She was trying to put Claira's size 2 diapers on her tiny dolls was fun to watch! She's been playing a lot with her dolls and dress up clothes lately. A lot, which is great because she's already acquired about 2 dozen dolls in her short life.

For those who might be wondering, Elsie's test results came back normal. I asked the doctor about the blood in her urine, but it turns out that there wasn't actually blood in her urine, the test just showed indicators that there MIGHT be. You'd think that doctors and nurses would be more clear about this sort of thing.

Monday, May 19, 2008

My favorite weekend photos

You're invited...

to my pity party...Yeah, I'm feeling a little blue about potty training this evening. Elsie has yet to go in the big girl potty even one single time in her 3+ years of life. She first showed some interest when she was about 18 months old, and I bought her panties and a little potty chair. She liked to play on it, but never went. So, I backed off and we gave it another try after she turned 2. We bought a little seat that sits on the regular toilet. Still no luck. Since then, she goes through periods of time where she really wants to sit on the potty (but nothing happens) or she's absolutely against it and wants her diapers. Either way, I really haven't pushed it. I wanted to get it done last summer before Claira arrived, but when I realized that wasn't going to happen, I've been pretty relaxed about the entire thing. But, I'd really like to have her potty trained before the end of the summer.
Anyway, we spent this last week planning a "Potty Party." We talked about it with Elsie and got her excited all week long. Yesterday, we went on a shopping trip and picked out new big girl panties, special soap for handwashing after using the potty and a new *purple* towel to dry her hands with, and a new water bottle to drink out of while she's trying to go potty. We bought stickers to mark her success with. Tonight, we made brownies to celebrate. All this in anticipation that tomorrow she's going to wear big girl panties and potty on the big girl potty. Rrriiiiggghhhttt. Well, we did succeed in the enthusiasm portion of the event. Elsie wanted her big girl panties on right away, and she wanted to sit on the potty. Of course, I gave in. So, we filled up her water bottle, grabbed some books, and settled in on the potty. We read 3 books, got a water refill, counted and drank some more. We read some more. We counted more. She did not potty. There were a couple of times she got really fidgety, and I knew that she needed to go so we distracted her. She sat on the potty for a good 30-40 minutes and peed on the floor within a minute of getting off the potty.
How do you talk a kid into peeing in the potty?
Elsie's best friend, Lydia, is not potty-trained yet either. She will actually go on the potty, but she has accidents if Stef doesn't take her in time. Lydia won't initiate it. I say they're a lot farther along than we are! Anyway, I'm going to be praying extra hard that Lydia will potty train soon. Hopefully some of my prayers to bless others will pay themselves back to us quickly!

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Saturday, May 17, 2008


Elsie's new thing is saying stuff like, "I was just wonderin' if maybe I'm hungry" or "I was just wonderin' if maybe I'd like to talk to Daddy." It's super cute.

On Tuesday, she talked to Daddy after spending the afternoon at the doctor's office. She told him she wanted to go to Target and eat at McDonald's. Being the Daddy that he is, he caved instantly, without hesitation. So, we had McDonald's for dinner and went shopping when Jason got home. At the checkout, Elsie wanted some teddy grahams so we got some for her and gave her a small handful for the ride home. Today, she asked for a snack after lunch so I said, "Just a minute, let me get you a small bowl." She replied, "Well, remember, small bowls are for babies, and I'm a BIG girl!"

Today, Jason and Claira were napping in the recliner. I walked into the living room and noticed that Claira was awake so I said hello to her. Elsie said, "Well, I told Daddy that Claira was awake and Daddy said, 'SSHHH!'"

When Claira babbles, Elsie giggles in response and tells me "how amazin' baby Claira is!"

Thursday, May 15, 2008

A Photo Story of Baby Ducklings

These photos and slide show were taken and created by Wendy White. Enjoy!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Bring on the consonants!

Claira has been cooing for awhile now...lots of oohs and aaaahs. She mastered the g sound about a month ago, but it's been a lonely consonant for several weeks. Until yesterday. On the way home from the doctor's office, Claira was getting fussy and starting was crying out, "baaaa, baaaa, baaaa!" like a little lamb!
Earlier this morning, I was holding her when she spit up all down the front of herself so I grabbed a burp cloth and sat her down on the couch so I could clean her up. She immediately starting wailing and cried out, "OOO, mama!" It was quite funny because it fit the occasion, but I know she doesn't know what she's saying yet.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Stinky ABC

They've cancelled October Road, and I think that's just crummy!

All eyes on Elsie!

Elsie woke up in the middle of the night last night complaining that her back hurt. She ended up spending the rest of the night in our bed. This morning when she woke up, she was still complaining that her back hurt and wouldn't eat or drink anything. She just laid on the couch, napping, waking, napping, waking, but just laying there. Well, after one of her mini-naps, she sat up, cried out, "My back hurts!" then proceeded to puke. I carried her into the tub and ran her some bath water. She just sat in the bath for about an hour and a half, just sitting there, not playing, but she didn't want to get out either. When she was done, she started crying that she wanted out, so I wrapped her in a towel and carried her back out to the living room where I layed her on the floor and put her diaper on. Then, I went downstairs to get her some clothes and she was asleep before I made it back to her.
While she was sleeping, I called the doctor and consulted the mommies at Babycenter who told me it could be a kidney infection. By this time, Claira was napping so, we set Elsie an appointment to be seen this afternoon, and I got busy getting us ready for our outing.
I called Diane to put Elsie on our church's prayer chain. The stroller had been sitting in the garage so I put it in the car along with the diaper bag. By the time I'd changed my clothes, Elsie woke up hungry, thirsty, and talkative. She ate, drank, and watched cartoons. It would've been a normal morning if this same activity had taken at 8 a.m. this morning instead of noon! Anyway, her drastic change in behavior is evidence that God moves swiftly when we call out to Him.
At about 1:50, we headed out the door for our 2:20 appointment. Elsie got weighed (still 42 pounds!) and the nurse took us to the exam room. Elsie was happy to announce her condition to all within 100 feet as we walked down the hall. "I'm sick. I don't feel good. I puked all over the couch. My back hurts." And so on. It's lovely how they like to share such information at their highest volume, no?

Well, we got to answer a bunch of questions for the nurse and wait for the doctor and answer the same questions for her. I have no idea why the nurse needs to ask a bunch of questions and type them into the computer if the doctor is going to ask the same questions and type the answers as well. Seems silly to me, but I suppose I didn't spend a bunch of money on medical school so what do I know? Basically, her exam was fine, but the doctor was concerned that she might have a bladder or kidney infection and we'd need to get a urine sample to test for that. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! At this point, they knew she wasn't potty trained from the questions answered earlier. Still, they asked if I thought she'd pee in a hat to which I answered honestly, "You can try, she'll gladly sit there, but she hasn't yet actually gone on the potty even one time so I doubt it'll be successful." So, they brought in this little bag to put on her inside her diaper. It was actually pretty clever, I thought. It's open at the top with a little upside down U-shaped foam sticker that sticks to her skin and the bottom opening of the bag remains open for collection. I gave Elsie a couple of cups of cold water and we had a sample within 15 minutes. The sample showed trace amounts of blood and bacteria (signs of infection) and keytones (sign of dehydration--not a surprise since she'd puked). The doctor explained that they'd have to have a culture done to test for the infections and the results could take up to 3 days. So, we should hear back from them by Friday. I'm praying that it's nothing and just a fluke. Elsie is her normal, energetic self. She was sad to leave the doctor's office though. She was definitely thrilled to be the center of attention for an afternoon, getting cups of water, books to look at, crayons to color with, and stickers. I think she's due for some one-on-one Hulabaloo time or something.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Manic Monday

We had a very busy weekend, and now Monday is here. I'm looking around and realizing that I need to CLEAN! There's stuff everywhere.

On Saturday, Jason went to prayer in the morning and then went to pick up the carnations for Mother's Day at church. Then, Elsie and I went to a Mother's Day Tea Party Luncheon at church. It was fun to get all dressed up for a tea party. She loved it. They served all kinds of goodies...tea (obviously), fruit, various little tea sandwiches, the yummiest biscuits I've ever had, cookies and scones and cake. It was delicious. Of course, all Elsie would eat was grapes and cookies. I tried to get her to try a sandwich, and she kept telling me, "But they got things on it!" Obviously, she's remaining faithful to her plain cheese sandwich habit.

After the luncheon, we came home for a few minutes before heading out to do some shopping. I was in search of a pedestal bowl for a dessert I wanted to make, and I bought some preemie clothes. My friend, Christina, had a little boy late Thursday night. He wasn't due until July and hadn't been growing for awhile. She went in for a doctor's appointment Thursday and they admitted her to run some tests, found out that the umbilical cord was 90% blocked, and she ended up having an emergency c-section. His name is Elijah, and he's doing really well health-wise, but he's tiny...only 1 lb. 11 oz. at birth and 12 1/2 inches. I can't hardly imagine a baby that tiny. Despite his size, his doctors say he's on target with his age so that's great. And, an ultrasound had showed what they thought to be a hole in his heart, but his heart is fine and so is the rest of him. He's already gaining weight and was 1 lb. 14 oz. when I was there on Saturday. He's already a testimony!

Anyway, that brought us home late, and Jason ran out to the grocery store for us while I nursed Claira and got the girls ready for bed. Then, my sweet Jason helped make the dessert for a Mother's Day get-together we were attending. So, yesterday we had church, of course. Elsie made me a little bag of potpourri with a sweet poem and all the children hand out carnations to their mommies. Last year, I remember Elsie just wanted the flower all to herself and cried when she broke it in half. This year, she's more willing in the gift-giving department so I received my flower fully in-tact. That's bittersweet, and I laughed at myself for missing the little girl whose tears I had to soothe when she broke my flower!

After church, we came home and got ready to go to Lisa and Jerry's house. They fried some chicken, and we had a crazy amount of dessert. It was a fun time, just talking and laughing. We're blessed to have many wonderful friends to spend our time with. Oh, oh, and on the way to their house, we were driving down our road when we came across a bunch of geese so I got to see lots of little baby geese! They were absolutely adorable, and Jason indulged me when he turned around to go back home and retrieve my camera! I couldn't get too close to the geese since they took off for the water as soon as I opened the car door. But, I was excited to see them! I'll have to post a picture of them later. All in all, we had a fun day. Besides my camera which was my early Mother's Day gift, Jason picked me up a devotional on the women of the Bible that I'm looking forward to reading. He knows I've had a hard time reading as much as I'd like to since Claira arrived so I'm thankful for his thoughtfulness. I hope everyone had a wonderful day!

Friday, May 9, 2008


Mommy: Elsie, do you need to wipe your nose?
Elsie: I'm not leakin'!

Last weekend, Elsie started a game of her own. Jason or I will be walking somewhere in the house when she'll shout out, "Red means stop! Yellow means slow down! Green means go!" So far, we've been playing along nicely, but I don't know how long it'll last before she catches us at a time where patience is running low...hopefully, it's far off for her sake.

Elsie: I'm hungry!
Mommy: Nice to meet you, Hungry. I'm Mommy.
Elsie: No! My name's not Hungry! My belly is feeling hungry, and I need food!

Paging Dr. Elsie

Elsie got a doctor kit for Christmas. It comes out to play at least once a week. Yesterday happened to be one of those days. She followed me around most of the day with her stethoscope hanging from her neck and listening to my heart. "Are you hurt?" she'd ask in her concerned, sympathetic voice. She'd put the stethoscope up to my belly and say, "It sounds like bunnies hopping!" Cute, yes? Good fun. Little did either of us know that we may be in need of an actual doctor before the day was done.

I had just finished nursing Claira and laying her down for a nap when Jason got home from work yesterday...the perfect opportunity to sneak off to the mall and Gymboree's Circle of Friends sale. So, off I went to shop for new pajamas for Claira. I got a lot of great stuff for a good price so I was excited about that. I was just finishing up at the checkout when my phone rang. It was Jason, asking how long until I'd be on my way home. I told him I was leaving then and asked if Claira was fussing. "No," he responded, "but Elsie tried to climb up our dresser and it fell on top of her." I seriously stopped dead in my tracks as I tried to gather my thoughts. "Is she okay, is she hurt, what's wrong?" There must be something wrong with my baby after that. He told me she was fine, that she was sleeping. He didn't think she'd hit her head but her foot had been stuck. She could move fine. He had checked her over, and she wasn't complaining of pain anywhere, even when he applied pressure. By that time, I'd made my way to my car and ended the call with Jason. I prayed a quick prayer as I browsed through my phone numbers to find my step-mom's phone number. She's a nurse, and she occasionally gets the Elsie's sick ____________. What should I do? phone calls. She explained how to check her over and said she was probably fine. So, I got home and checked her out for myself as she slept on the couch.

I still can't imagine how scary that must've been for her or for Jason. He said her foot got caught in one of the drawers somehow so it was hard to get the dresser off of her. I admitted that I was glad I wasn't the one who had to see my baby with a large piece of furniture on top of her.

I've checked her over again today, and she seems fine still. I expected her to have a bruise or two and be sore, but she's perfectly normal. I'm amazed at how thorough God is. Not a single bruise on her. God is good.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Ode to Teddy

When Elsie was an infant, I must have purchased at least half a dozen little trinkets, wanting her to have a lovey. A soft little pink blanket with satin edges and a bunny head. A multi-colored stuffed kitten. She didn't attach herself to any of them. Her first year came and went, and I'd gotten nowhere in the lovey department. For her second Christmas, we got her the Teddy Bear Nursery from Little Tikes. Being true to its name, it arrived with a teddy bear. I really didn't think too much of him. It's a simple bear. Soft, brown fur with a pale yellow ribbon tied around his neck. Elsie was still small at the time and not too interested in opening presents so we put the nursery together on Christmas Eve, opened a couple of dolls we were giving her, and set it up in her room for her to find in the morning. Christmas morning, the nursery was completely overshadowed by the play kitchen we'd also set up for her.

But, sometime over this past year, that teddy bear found himself a home in the arm's of my first daughter. I found myself searching for him when Elsie couldn't sleep at night and retrieving Teddy when she didn't feel well. His responsibilities to comfort have increased greatly since Claira has arrived. While there are times that I'm fully able to tend to each of Elsie and Claira's needs, there are other times that I'm pulled in two directions and both girls need to be soothed.

Teddy has become Elsie's friend and companion. He's got a reserved spot at all of her tea parties and is on my must-pack list when we go on a trip. He's been pushed around in her doll stroller and taken rides in Claira's baby swing.

He's been hugged, kissed, jumped over, and stomped on. Mostly, he's been loved and given love in return. He's all you could ever want from a soft little brown bear with a yellow ribbon.

Scroll down!

and you'll finally see some pictures from this past weekend...for some reason, I'm able to upload photos one at a time. So, that's just inconvenient and takes forever, but oh well. There you go!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Claira, the drummer

I must be the stingy one.

Last night, Elsie beat me at the match game, fair and square, so I offered her a FEW m&m's as her prize. Claira was hungry so I took her to nurse and said Daddy could help her get the m&m's. Little did I know that a few to me (meaning 5 or 6, maybe up to 10) means a handful to daddy. An Elsie size handful? No, a daddy size handful. He took my astonished reaction to him emptying his shirt pocket of m&m's for Elsie to confess that he often gives in and just replies, "Sshhh..." when Elsie asks for snacks! What a turkey he is! (Now we all know where Elsie gets it. LOL!)
Anyway, a few minutes later, Elsie caught Jason sneaking an m&m from her pile. "Hey! Stop! My m&m's!" she said. Jason told her that she still had more than if Mommy had gotten them for her. "That's true." she responded. I really couldn't help but laugh because she's right. It IS true.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Loved by Elsie

A little bit ago I told Elsie I had something for her so she bounced over, and I drew her into my lap, giving her a hug. She let her head fall back into my arms, looked up at me and said, "You make my heart super happy." Then she said, "But baby Claira stinks!" and ran away.

Yep, you heard it hear first...Claira's gas emissions come from her daddy.

The Neverending Post

I've been slacking the blog in a major way lately. We've been keeping busy around here. Last week, Claira turned 6 months old sometime between Wednesday and Thursday because there's not a 31st day of April. I'm amazed at how big she's getting, already pretty comfortable in the 6-12 month rompers I've been buying her for summer. So, I've actually purchased a couple of things in size 12-18 months in case she needs them before summer ends. Right now, she loves chewing on teethers, laying in Mommy's arms and staring at the light from the window that reflects across the ceiling, and jumping. She LOVES to jump. She jumps when she's not in her jumper. When she's nursing, she jumps against my legs. Jumping even calms her cries. Sometimes, it's the ONLY thing that calms her cries.

She's had a couple of firsts this past week. She tried out a sippy cup for the first time. I was amazed that she picked it up and stuck it right in her mouth. I guess she's been watching and learning from her big sister for the past 6 months. Anyway, she sucked on it happily, gave a big grin when she got a taste of the water, and then let out a shriek as she tossed it to the floor. Of course, I picked it up, but she didn't want any more to do with it.

Last night, she tried some rice cereal for the first time, and she did great. It was so adorable to watch her suck on the spoon as though she were nursing.

On Friday, Elsie helped Daddy mow our backyard. Jason had to move Elsie's little slide/playhouse to mow underneath it, and he found a Robin's nest underneath. He was careful not to hit it while he mowed, but we don't think mama bird has been back since the slide was moved. Speaking of birds...the geese are gone. I'm really quite sad that I missed the baby geese or goose...we only saw one egg in the nest, and one day last week I walked over there because I hadn't seen the mama goose in a couple of days. I found an empty nest and an egg shell on the ground so perhaps she had only one baby. Apparently, geese are not gracious guests since I would've liked to see the baby paraded around the parking lot for a few days in exchange for lodging!

We hosted small group at our house after church yesterday, and I dare say it was the most people I've ever had in my house at one time. It was a gorgeous day. Jason fired up the grill, the kids ran in and out of the house two or three at a time, and we had a nice afternoon of friends, food, and chatter. I love the summer months. It makes just hanging out an event to look forward to.

Well, I've got about a dozen pictures to insert into this post. I actually started writing this post last night, but blogger won't let me add photos...I don't know what's wrong. So, I'm posting this now and I'll try to add photos again later.

Friday, May 2, 2008


Elsie: "Hotscotch! Let's play Hotscotch!"
Mommy: "What's hotscotch?"
Elsie: "Weeelllll. I don't know."

I was talking on the phone with Jason when Elsie came and climbed up on my lap.
Elsie: "Is that Daddy?"
Mommy: "Yes."
Elsie: "Is it MY Daddy?"
Mommy: "Yes, silly."

I laid Claira down for a nap in our bedroom when Elsie came bouncing down the hallway.
Elsie: "I want to give my sister a hug!"
Mommy: "Claira's sleeping so your hug will have to wait. Let's go read a story."
Later, Claira woke up, and I laid down next to her. Elsie crawled onto the bed with us. She gave Claira a hug and said, "Mommy, Claira and I can be together after all."

Elsie: "I want Daddy to stay at home. Why does he have to be gone?"
Mommy: "Daddy has to go to work."
Elsie: "Or I can't have socks to wear?"
Mommy: "Probably not...we wouldn't have money for socks if Daddy didn't work."
Elsie: "Well, I like socks."

Daily, Elsie will tell me that Claira is her best sister or her favorite sister. It's sweetness, I tell you!

Thursday, May 1, 2008

I'm not as clever as I thought

My blog has been getting hits for quite some time now from people searching for "Hugs and Hissyfits Photography" and "Hugs and Hissyfits Boutique." I hope it doesn't annoy them to pieces when they find me instead! (Links inserted in case you're one of THEM!)