Thursday, August 29, 2013

First Day of "School" - And Subsequent Mom Feelings

Harper went to "school" today for the first time.  If you are friends with me on Facebook or Instagram, you might be thinking, I'm sick of seeing your kid in a tiny backpack already.  But that's ok.  I'm sharing here too.

She's going to a church-run Children's Morning Out once a week, from 9-1.  But since she gets to take a tiny backpack, I'm calling it school.

She was getting kind of tired and was not too smiley for these pictures.  It doesn't help that school starts at 9 - right when her usual nap time starts... I was hoping she wouldn't scream the whole time (she didn't!).

I didn't cry, but I did get a bit nostalgic and sad.  I was happy to drop her off because I knew that she would have fun.  But I just wanted to know what she was doing!  Anytime I leave Tony alone with her, I always want a full report - what did she eat? did she play? did she cry? did she do tricks??  I guess when you are used to spending every (one of her) waking seconds with someone, it's weird to think she is doing something that I'm not a part of.  I wish I could have been a fly on the wall to see how happy she was to play with the new toys, or how much she waved at the other kids, or how messy she got at lunch.  I just want to witness her happiness.

She did really well and the teacher told me she loved looking at the other kids, especially the younger babies.  She didn't nap and didn't scream, which meant I was happy, they were happy, and she went right down for a nap as soon as we got home (hooray!!).  

Moms of older kids, you must be thinking - just you wait.  This is only a glimpse into the future of sending my baby off into the world.  She will do things I won't know about.  She will grow and learn and play in ways I won't get to witness.  One day she will tell me all about what she did - and then she will get to the age where she won't.  I won't always have her here, in my arms, in my sight.  But that's what being a mom is all about, right?  Wearing your heart outside your body...

Monday, August 26, 2013

Monday Updates

We went on vacation!  Photos of a chubby, swimdiapered baby in the sand to come!

My digital break was great, just as it always is.  After the first day, I don't even think about it.  We even had lots of rainy, slow evenings at the beach - but I read instead of messing around on my phone.  Worth it.  Also, I found out various feeds only take you back about three days (on my phone, at least).  So anything that happened further back than that... well, I just may never know.

I got a job!!  Ok, well it's 2 hours a week... But.  It's with a tutoring company and I have one student who I meet twice a week.  It's a great chance to do something productive, make a tiny bit of money, and stay current with my teachering (a word, I assure you.).

Harper starts "school" this week (ha!).  Really it's just a Children's Morning Out one day a week, for four hours.  I know lots of moms need this as childcare or genuinely need the break from their kids - neither of which is me.  Harper is just one kid and pretty easy.  But I wanted her to have the chance to hang out with other kids, learn from them, and get to sing fun songs and such.  She can only tolerate my dancing but so much.  It's pretty inexpensive and I think she will love it!

Speaking of that child - oh my.  She is a mess.  Good mess, but exhausting mess.  This mobility thing is no joke.  She speed crawls now (starting at 12.5 months - now I am so glad she took her time!!) and pulls up on everything, cruising away and even trying to remove her hands to stand on her own.  She has no fear and still jiggly wiggly hips, which means lots of falls and lots of "uh oh!"s and a few consoling hugs.  This kid is a little terror now.  But I do love it so much - I waited so long for her to reach these milestones, and I am so grateful she is walkingish and crawling with no foot problems at all!

We came home to a giant hole in our front landscape bed by the house.  Seriously, it was a foot wide, two feet deep, and turned to a tunnel.  We were terrified (I was.).  Tony bravely shoveled out the hole, and it was empty.... but I am a little scared to know what dug it (we are thinking armadillo??).  Yikes.

What do I pack in a pre-toddler lunch box??  

It feels like fall today.  I'm trying to not get my hopes up.  But they are up... (pumpkin!!)

That is all.  I missed you guys and have a lot of blogs to catch up on.  Enjoy your week!!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Reset Button

Each year, I like to take one week and turn off the digital noise in my life.  I like to commit to not using a smartphone, computer, iPad and the like for the whole week (but the phone's the biggest culprit).  No screens besides the occasional TV.  

Just the fact that I have to make a pledge to do something like this shows how bad it is.  I find myself becoming more and more addicted to these things - a perpetual upswing until I decide to do something about it.  I always know it's bad when I can't stop at a red light without immediately picking up my phone.  Or sit down on the couch without checking it.  Or feel naked when I've left it at home.  Or force myself to leave it in my bag when we are waiting on food or something and I really want to be present with my family.

Honestly, I don't have anything that important or exciting on my phone.  I don't have work emails.  I don't get many emails that actually matter.  I don't have a business or an important blog or anything of the sort that requires it's usage.  

I find myself constantly refreshing facebookinstagramtwitteretc to the point of fatigue, but my fingers itch to do it.  I know it's bad when it becomes a need.

So, I've found these little week-long breaks really help curb that.  I come back feeling ambivalence, even antipathy towards the digital world.  I'm curious what the "world" has been up to, but frankly I don't want to have to catch up. And yes, my addiction creeps back up slowly as the weeks go on, but this week is a nice refresh, a reset button on priorities.  

It's also a chance to really engage with real life. 

See you next week, digital world! (maybe)

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Family Photos

Ok, I've shared this on pretty much every other social media outlet already, so forgive the bombardment, but we got pictures taken for Harper's first birthday and I love them to pieces. Now you must look at them (again, probably).

There were 29 and I totally loved all but one (I looked pregnant), so here are just a few.  I'm so excited to update some frames around my house and share some with the grandparents.

Yeah I picked the sunniest spot in Peachtree City, but she made it work! 

I could just die with how precious she looks.

We actually smiled pretty normally!

Harper ate grass! 

My two faves: 

These just capture her so well - happy, toothy, crazy-haired, chubby, and so, so much fun!

I love us.

Thanks to Dorothy Nicole Photography for these pictures!  She did a great job and was obviously great at getting Harper to smile!  Check her out if you are local! 

Monday, August 12, 2013

Oh Weekend.

Happy Monday!

We had one of those fun, relaxed, enjoyable weekends over the past few days.  It was so nice that it made me realize how we hadn't had one like that in a while.  It was a chance to soak up sunshine and family.  I feel rejuvenated and determined to get out of my funk.  In fact, I promised myself I would.  So far, so good!

Will pictures make this overly-detailed, youdon'treallycareaboutit recap a little more endurable?  Yes?  Ok!

Here's a look at our weekend, mostly in Instagram snaps:

Friday we got to see my aunt and uncle on their way to visit family in Atlanta.  They live pretty far from us so we rarely get to see them - so fun they came to see us and met Harper!

We are house/dog sitting for Tony's parents, so we had the chance to use their pool whenever we wanted to (a nice perk to balance out moving all our stuff over here and wrangling four dogs). :)
Mikey and Kacy came over with the kiddos Friday night and we ate dinner and swam - there was even some diving board action.

Saturday morning we woke up and decided to go get breakfast, something we don't often do.  It was dead at Flying Biscuit at 7:30, so we didn't have to worry too much about our screecher.  It was so pleasant we decided to make it a sometimes-tradition.

Saturday it was actually sunny!  Like, all day!!  This is a straight miracle, considering it has been raining this entire summer.

We sunbathed and swam (all with plenty of spf, don't you worry).  Harper loves swimming and we entertained her with crazy diving board jumps.  She would get so excited when we counted down to jumping!

Harper flirted with using her sippy cup instead of a bottle, but then rebelled.  We are on a trial basis now...

Saturday night, Tony had his fantasy football draft... (please tell me some others of you have to endure this season of life each fall, too....).  I got to watch baby Finn for the evening.  He was (always is!) super good and so laid back, but I was on my toes feeding and changing and entertaining.  God bless the mamas of Irish twins!

A little issue when Harper saw Finn getting a bottle.  Melt.down.  

The rest of the time she wanted to crawl on him or pull his toes.  We both loved watching him smile and coo.

Sunday we went to church and spent more time in the pool.  Tony got a dose of dadding when I went to volunteer for a few hours at church that evening with some hyper Kindergartners.

All in all, fantastic weekend spent doing a whole lot of nothing.  I hope yours was just as great!

Thursday, August 8, 2013


Sometimes, I find myself feeling trapped by the overlapping and connecting and independent circles that carry us from one moment to the next. Minute to minute. Year to year. The circles that are created naturally, with little thought or effort.

Our lives are set to the cyclical rhythms found in nature. Day to night to day. Hours passing and starting anew.  And somehow, we unconscionably - and consciously - create our own.

There is so much comfort to be found in the circles. They ground is. They pattern our days and create predictability. We seamlessly create our own circles, small and quick, large and endless... We build these circles of time and find our place within their arcs.

Yet that same comfort and safety found in our patterned loops can become... encircling (get it? ugh). 

Trapped in the circle and forced to keep going round and round, passing the beginning just to take a ride around again, wearing a tread so deep that the walls begin to build up around you with no warning.

I think this is a common sentiment for those with small children.  Or anyone with a job... Or basically anyone in the world.  

I love the schedules of our days.  I am a planner and have not a shred of impulsiveness (just ask Kacy). I like predictable.  I like calm.  I like to be in control.

But there are some days when it just feels like Groundhog's Day, ya know?  Where I wonder if I really am going to go through the entire cycle of our day all over again.  Didn't I fill bottles yesterday?  Didn't I wash that highchair tray approximately one billion times yesterday?  Didn't that get vacuumed already?  Even though each day usually holds some fresh experience, it feels like life is on one endless loop, ready to repeat again the next day.

All of this sounds depressive and whiny, I know.  It is, but I don't intend for it to be.  Instead, I want to be able to recognize this feeling and act on it.  I've been in a funk.  No real reason.  Summertime sadness, perhaps.  But I think I begin to feel this way when I stop actively seeking out different.  When I become complacent in my circles and become unwilling to veer a little off track, out of the rut.

Not really sure how I'm going to combat it.  But the first step is acknowledging it, right?  

I want to embrace our circles and find ways to find joy in them.  I want to jump out of line a little too.

As summer hits it's stifling peak here, I'm going to work on doing just that.  And if anything, maybe the cyclical changing of the seasons will bring new circles to jump into and enjoy.

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