Thursday, December 31, 2009

So This Is Christmas

I started to do a big Christmas recap the other day, then got sidetracked when I saw Stanford Blatch from SATC on Disney's Imagination Movers. For some reason, I felt compelled to write a post about how bizarre that seemed to me, but when I got to the end of it, I realized I really had no point other than: it was bizarre to see Stanford Blatch on Imagination Movers.

So. I scratched that one and will now commence with the Christms Story of '09 (in pictures, because I have a sore throat and cough and am not feeling the Christmas spirit so much now).

Christmas Eve at Nana and Grandad's House

Christmas Eve--Getting Ready for Santa
Jason put out reindeer food in the freezing rain. The next morning, Claire really really REALLY wanted to see if the food was gone but it was unfortunately covered in four inches of snow (lucky for us because who would've thought to actually remove the reindeer food?).

Cookies for Santa and carrots for the reindeer. Claire realized the next day that we neglected to leave milk for Santa. You have no idea how much this troubled her, but I assured that other kids with more thoughtful moms left him some.

Claire's letter to Santa.

The tree with a few presents under it (not all ours--also Grandma's and Ashley's loot too).

Coming down the stairs on Christmas morning. Claire later admitted that she came down in the middle of the night "just to make sure Santa came".

Hello, Elmo. I think I love you.

Arden with her Barbie dress. The only thing she asked for this year.

Claire with her Just Like Me American Girl doll (who would look a lot more like Claire if she were from Latin America).

Sweet Samuel Cade. My girls couldn't keep their hands off of him.

The cousins.

A white Christmas meant that as soon as the presents were open, these crazy girls were ready to head outside. In their pajama pants. They only lasted about 30 seconds before they came back in and put on some warmer gear.

This girl was smart--she stayed inside where it was warm.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Ladies and Gentleman, This is Reindeer # 4

We got the good news several weeks ago that Claire had landed both a speaking part and a singing part in the kindergarten rendition of "Holiday Moosical". I was much more excited about the news than Claire, who felt more than a little slighted that she had been passed over for the role of Sugar Plum Fairy. Despite my best efforts to convince her that a reindeer was waaaay cooler than a Sugar Plum Fairy (who drives Santa's sleigh? Who? That's right. Reindeer. NOT fairies.), she remained skeptical about wearing antlers and singing in front of an audience.

I can't say that I blame her, especially since I had to be an elf in my own kindergarten musical when what I really wanted to be one of the presents. Because when you're five, wearing a box covered in wrapping paper trumps pointy-toed shoes any day.

But even though I understood where Claire was coming from, I did my best to psyche her up for her musical theatre debut. Because, I'll be honest with you, I've never had a singing part OR a speaking part in any kind of on-stage production and this was kind of exciting to me. Not that I'm living vicariously through my five year old. Because that would be weird.

I guess all my pep-talking worked, because by the time the night of the musical rolled around, Claire was full of nervous energy and couldn't wait to hit the stage. There was no more talk of Sugar Plum Fairies. Reindeer #4 was in the house.

I played the part of the proud mama, simultaneously filming and snapping pictures as Claire said her line (Flying is our job alone. Flying is our gig.) and sang her song. The other moms and I congratulated each other on how good our children were doing. Wait a minute. Is Claire grabbing the microphone? Like a rock star? Perhaps she's watched one to many Hannah Montana episodes. Oh, look. They're done. Here they go, marching sweetly off the stage. Wait a minute. Is Claire dancing? Where did she learn that Beyonce-esqe "Single Ladies" move? I swear she gets this from her dad.

After the show, Claire was on some kind of post-performance high. "I love the stage!" she proclaimed. "Yeah," I said, "I kind of noticed that."

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

There Are No Stupid Questions

Top Ten Things Strangers Have Asked or Said About Amelia's Glasses(and the responses I would like to give)

10. Are those real glasses?
No--I just like putting Mr. Potato Head glasses on my baby.

9. Is she wearing glasses?
No. You must be seeing things.

8. How did you know she needed them?
This is actually a legitimate question, and one that I totally don't mind answering. So no sarcastic response is necessary.

7. Does she wear those to help her see?
No....I just think they make her look smarter.

6. Does she keep them on?
Again. Completely legitimate question, thus no internal eye-rolling on this one.

5. Marge! Get over here! You gotta check out this baby with glasses.
Yeah.... This is for real. I wish I were making this up, but we were approached by an older gentleman in Branson who got such a kick out of Amelia's glasses that he called over his wife to share in the fun.

4. Those are REAL glasses? SER-iously? They're REAL? How can they even TELL how strong the glasses need to be on a BABY?
I sense your skepticism, teenage girl, but I'm guessing you're not an EYE DOCTOR. My daughter's EYE DOCTOR is pretty adept at this sort of thing, what with all his MEDICAL TRAINING and EXPERIENCE.

3. Where did you get those precious glasses??
Are you familiar with Forever 21?

2. DUDE! Nice Shades!
Um...technically they aren't shades, pizza guy. But I like your enthusiasm.

And the number one question I get asked about Amelia's glasses...

1. Are those REAL glasses????
They're real. And they're SPECTACULAR.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

This will make you smile

And if watching a baby laugh hysterically doesn't make you smile, well, then we probably can't be friends.

Monday, October 26, 2009

It was a party in NLR

Last Saturday night, #1 on Claire's top ten list of things to do before she's 12 was checked off (not really--I made that part up about the list but if she had one, this would've been #1 for sure). What did we do, you ask?

Yes. I took my five year old to see Miley Cyrus. She had a blast and, thankfully, is too young to realize that her beloved Hannah Montana has now morphed into a 16-going-on-21 year old rocker wannabe who worked the stage in bootie shorts and tall boots and, frankly, was dancing waaaayyy to provocatively for a teenager (I just read that back and would like to announce that I have officially turned into my mother).

She did, however, announce to her kindergarten class that Miley's brother (the opening act. Don't ask. Please. It's too painful to recall) took his shirt off at the end of his set and that it was inappropriate. I would also like to announce that Claire has officially turned into my mother.

It really was a great time and we loved spending some big girl time together with our friends, Bethany and Elizabeth.

Ready to see Miley!!

Too bad I didn't know I could take my camera inside the arena. You can't tell from the picture, but that's Miley up on the stage.

Post concert.

p.s. Dear Miley: If you're reading this, please don't take this the wrong way but you have to ditch your brother. Seriously. Just.....Seriously.

p.p.s. Dear Billy Ray Cyrus: Your daugther is 16. Six. TEEN. I'm just sayin...

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Why You Will Never Win an Argument with Claire

The following conversation took place last night...

Claire: Stop doing that, AR-DEN!
Arden (doing her best bobble head): You're a baby, Clay-yer.
Claire: No, I'm not! MOM!! Arden called me a baby!
Me (to myself): She also called you poo poo but you apparently didn't hear that part.
Me (to Claire): Remember what Little Bill says when someone calls him a name? So?
Claire: Yeah. So, Arden? So?
Arden (head still bobbling): So? So?
Claire: Stop copying me! You're not a big kid!
Jason: Relative to the second graders at your school, you're not a big kid either, Claire.
Claire: Well, I'm almost a first and second grader.
Me: I don't think a month of kindergarten qualifies you as almost a second grader.
Claire: Yes, it does. And I'm almost six.
Me: Uh, yeah, like in SIX months.
Claire: I'm almost six. We just have December then January then ha! MY BIRTHDAY!
Me: Also all of October, November and half of February.
Claire: No we don't. Just December then January.
Me: Claire. Seriously. We have October, November, December, January and half of February before it's your birthday.
Claire: See! You said December and January! I told you so!
Me: I didn't--oh never mind.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

All About Amelia

I've done a horrible job documenting sweet Amelia's life on this blog. At least I've got her baby book all up to date. No wait. That's a lie. I only have her name written in it. Well, there's always those thousands of pictures I've taken. No wait. That's a lie, too. Video? Not so much.

I know it's lame, but here is my attempt to catch up...

*She rolled over for the first time at three months, started the army crawl at five months, sat up on her own at six months, mastered the "real" crawl at seven months, pulled up at seven months and started cruising at eight months.

*Her first "word" was mama and she's been saying it pretty consistently since around five months. Now, ya'll know I'm not one of those crazy moms who think their babies know how to read or solve quadratic equations or make a creme brule at three months old, but come on! "Mama" at five months? That's pretty impressive, right? No? Your baby could speak in sentences at three weeks? In French? Oh. Well, she also says "Bababababa" and "Dada," if that helps.

*She had her first taste of baby food at six months old. She was not impressed (and who can blame her--have you tried rice cereal?). She loves green beans and is not a big fan of fruit.

*She loves to feed herself. Puffs, yogurt melts, tiny tiny tiny microscopic pieces of bread that are actually more like crumbs than bread but she loves them just the same and it makes me freak out less about choking hazards.

*She got her first (and only, so far) tooth at seven months.

Favorite Things
*Bathtime is a big hit with Miss A. Especially since she gets to share the tub with her big sisters. She gets so excited when I turn on the water and starts yelling until I put her in.

*All toys that are not approved for children under age 3. If it is a baby toy, you might as well put it away.

*Paci. In our quest to fund the retirement accounts of all the local orthodontists, it looks like we're raising another gal who loooooves her paci.

*Mommy, or you know, "Mama".

Eye Update
*After months of trying to find a contact that would fit her eye, we finally have one that is a perfect fit. The only bad news is that it doesn't come in her prescription (of course). So now Amelia wears a contact AND glasses. I know I'm her mom, but I have to tell you that you've probably never seen anything cuter than my baby in her pink glasses. Seriously. Much cuteness.

*We continue to love Amelia's eye doctor. He has given her a level of care that we never could have expected. House calls, text messages, writing appeal letters to the evil insurance company that wants to deny coverage of A's contacts... We are thankful to have Amelia in his care and have complete faith that he is doing everything possible to help our sweet girl see.

*Because Amelia's "bad" eye doesn't see much, it has a tendency to turn inward (aka: lazy eye). This will probably require a muscle surgery later on, but first, her doctor wants to try botox on the eye muscle. Yeah, you read that right. Botox. Would it be inappropriate to see if he could touch up my forehead while he's at it?

*Amelia is still just as sweet and mellow as she's been since day one. I'm not sure if this is her personality or just a function of being forced to go with the flow, but I'm really holding out hope that this is her personality because, well, goodness knows I need ONE laid back kid.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

And That's When I Knew I'd Failed Her

Claire's new soccer team is called "The Beat"--a name which I find equally amusing and stupid. When I told Claire the name of her team, she had a confused look and said, "That's a weird name."

I nodded in agreement, "But at least we can sing 'We've got the beat, we've got the beat, we've got the beat...yeahhhhh!!!' when you score a goal."

"What song is that?"

"It's the Go-Gos," I replied. She still looked confused so I launched into a few bars of "Vacation" and "Our lips are sealed".

"The Go-Gos?" she asked skeptically.

"Uh, yeah. Only one of my favorite 80s bands, like, ever."

She thought about it for a second and then her face lit up. "Oh! The Go-Gos! They're from Diego, right?"

"Um. No. Those would be the BoBos."

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Because I Know You Love a Good Arden Moment

Today at (where else?) Wal-Mart, Arden was mad because I wouldn't let her buy (1) Star Magazine (2) a Dr. Pepper (3) a bleach pen (seriously. Who stocks those shelves near the check-out? Do they hate all parents, or is it just me? Are they TRYING to set my kid up for failure? Could they not fill those shelves with broccoli or cantaloupe or toilet paper?). Not recognizing Arden's bad mood, the sweet checker made the mistake of telling Arden her dress was pretty. This innocuous comment set off a string of rude remarks from AK, most of which were (thankfully) unintelligible thanks to the combination of her southern accent and inability to pronounce the letter r. I think the checker got the general idea, though, what with all the forceful finger pointing and furrowed eye brows going on.

In the car, I asked Arden why she was so rude to the checker.

"Because she said my dress was pity. It's not pity. You're pity, Mommy."

Well. What are you supposed to say to that?

Apparently, not "It doesn't matter if you think I'm pretty (which, by the way, thanks) you're still going to Time Out as soon as we get home. And you can forget about that ice cream cone you wanted."

Because, if you say that, all of a sudden you're not so pretty anymore. At least according to your three year old.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Claire goes to Kindergarten

Interview with a Kindergartner....

Did you have a good day?
It was gooooood times.

What was your favorite part?
Well, the most funnest part was lunch and recess. But you didn't let me eat in the cafeteria today.

You didn't eat in the cafeteria? Where did you eat?
I ate IN the cafeteria but I didn't get a tray. I want to get a tray tomorrow.

You actually want to eat school food?
Yes. I want to get a tray.

Well, tomorrow's lunch is hamburgers. You hate hamburgers. You throw an enormous fit every time your dad grills hamburgers and demanded a hot dog instead. Last time I didn't have any hot dogs and there was weeping and gnashing of teeth.
Well. Now I like hamburgers. And I want to get a tray.

Ooookaaaay...Besides lunch, what else did you like?
I liked recess. But it was only, like, five minutes.

I think it's a little longer than five minutes--
You also didn't let me ride the bus.

Trust me, Claire. You don't want to ride the bus.
Yes, I do. The big kids ride the bus and I'm not a little kid.

So you're saying you wish I hadn't made your lunch or picked you up from school?

Awesome....What did you learn about today?
Ohhhh stuff like how not to spread germs and have good manners. We didn't learn to read yet.

I'm sure you'll get to that soon. Did you meet some new friends?
Yeah! There's this boy Oliver from the purple room last year he's in my class but he likes to be called Ollie just like I like to be called Claire Bear.

Did you tell your friends to call you Claire Bear?
Noooo....that's my FAMILY nickname, Mom.

Got it. Sounds like you had a good day. Are you excited about tomorrow?
I have to go back tomorrow?

Yes, sweet girl. Tomorrow and the next day and the next day and the next day....So many days that will fly by until the next thing I know, I'm taking your picture walking into your first day of college instead of kindergarten.
What are you talking about?

Monday, August 3, 2009

Proofs (not the mathematical kind)

Proof that I use bribery as a parenting technique far too often:

Me: Claire, please go clean up the toys in the playroom.
Claire, eyes locked on the TV: I'll give you 15 bucks if you do it.


Proof that you never know what Arden will do next:

She got sent to time out during dinner tonight for putting green peas down Claire's shirt.


Proof that having a baby who wears a contact has an upside:

When I ran out of saline solution yesterday, I borrowed Amelia's.


Proof that I am entirely too sleep deprived:

When Jason asked me how many times I got up with Amelia last night, I couldn't remember.


Proof that I'm not as cool as I think I am:

I got mad--really, really mad--that my DVR didn't record So You Think You Can Dance for the THIRD WEEK IN A ROW.


Proof that there is no substitute for life-long friendships:

Friends who haven't seen each other in weeks (love you, Ash!) or even months (love you, Gretch!), pick right back up where they left off last time they saw each other.


Proof that my first baby is growing up too fast:

Claire starts kindergarten in two weeks. Two weeks! I feel sick just thinking about it.


Proof that my last baby is growing up too fast:

Amelia is doing that "get up on all fours and rock back and forth a few times before face planting into the carpet" thing. I fear this means crawling is coming sooner than I'd like.


Proof that I am a glutton for punishment--and also probably delusional:

I'm contemplating another half marathon--and have only run once since Amelia was born. Quick, someone talk me out of this--please!


Proof that I DO get paid for this stay-at-home gig:

Arden: Mommy, I like you.

Claire: Mommy, you look so pretty today. Can I have all your clothes when I'm old?

Amelia: Ma ma ma ma ma ma ma ma

Sunday, July 19, 2009

In Which I Regale You With Tales of My Awesome Parenting

At least two nights a week, Claire loses her blankie. She hasn't had it all day, has no memory of when she last saw it and is so distraught at the idea of actually sleeping without it that she can't help look for it. She must remain in bed (which is where she always is, tucked in and bedtimes stories already told, when she discovers the blankie is gone), crying and whining and lamenting the unfairness of her blankie-less existence. Jason and I begin frantically searching for the lost lovey, knowing that as soon as it's found, Claire will go to sleep and we can finally sit on the couch and watch So You Think You Can Dance.

But the other night when Claire discovered her blankie was missing, I had had enough. Instead of looking for the blankie, I began to lecture her about keeping up with her things and how it wasn't MY responsibility to find HER lost objects and if it was really THAT special to her then SHE should get out of bed and look for it HERSELF. I told her that she couldn't expect me to drop everything to look for her blankie and I may have even thrown in something about kindergarteners taking care of their own things. I gave her another kiss and told her she could help me find the blankie tomorrow. Sniffling, she agreed and said good night.

I went downstairs to watch TV, congratulating myself on teaching Claire a lesson in responsibility. Next time, I thought to myself, she'll remember to leave her blankie on her bed so it won't get lost.

An hour later, I remembered I had left wet clothes in the washing machine. As I began transferring the towels to the dryer, I noticed something pink and silky at the bottom of the machine. I reached in and pulled out Claire's beloved blankie.

Here's where I would like to tell you that I went up to Claire's room right then and there and apologized. But I didn't. I tossed the blankie in the dryer and finished watching Anderson Cooper (yeah I'm old, so?). Before I went to bed, I tiptoed into Claire's room and laid her freshly laundered blankie by her pillow.

The next morning she came downstairs, holding her blankie triumphantly over her head. "Mom! You found it!"

"Oh, yeah. I knew that thing would turn up somewhere..."

Friday, July 17, 2009

B--Double O-- T--Y, Oh My!

At her three year check up, Arden's pediatrician thought we should go ahead and do a vision screening on her. After covering Arden's eye, the nurse walked over to the vision chart and pointed to one of the shapes, "What is this shape, Arden?"

Arden, who was doing a little dance this whole time, paused for a minute. "Bootie."

The nurse pointed to the next shape. "What's this one?"


"And this one?"


By this time, Dr. P was laughing really hard. Never one to let an opportunity to be the center of attention pass, Arden seized the moment. "Bootie! Bootie! They're all bootie!"

I finally intervened. "Maybe we should just wait until her four year check up for the vision screening."

Total killjoy, I know.

After that day, Arden has put the word "bootie" in her daily vocabulary rotation. She works it in whenever she can--even when it makes no sense. Oh, wait, it NEVER makes sense. I'll give you some examples...

"Arden, would you like peanut butter or turkey for lunch?"

"Arden, go put your swimsuit on so we can go to the pool."

"Arden, what should we get Ashley for her birthday?"

The other day I even caught her singing "Bootie, bootie, bootie, bootie," to the tune of "Jesus loves me." Frankly, I'm not really sure what to say about that.

Monday, June 29, 2009

The Patch

We started patching Amelia's good eye last week. I have been dreading this particular part of her treatment since the day she got diagnosed. I know it's for the best. I know it's her only shot to gain some vision in that eye. I know she'll be fine. I know that, eventually, this will be just a small blip on the radar for her. I know.

But for now, it's agonizing. When she wakes up all smiley and bright-eyed, it feels wrong to patch her one good eye, knowing that I'm essentially making her blind by doing it. It's frustrating for her, not being able to see. She lasts about an hour with the patch on, then goes to sleep. I understand this fight or flight response. Sometimes I wish I could just go to sleep too.

There have been some glimmers of hope though. When her good eye is patched, she reaches for toys held up in front of her. She smiles at me and laughs at her sisters. She seems to see something, although her doctor doesn't seem quite as impressed by this as Jason and I are.

Claire and Arden don't like it when Amelia's eye is patched. They want to be able to see all of her sweet face, as do I. I think it bothers them to see her having to do something that is difficult for her. Claire told me not to take Amelia's picture when she's wearing the patch. She said people would laugh at her. I told her they wouldn't. She asked what if they did. I said I would punch them in the face.

And I wonder where Arden gets her aggressive streak from.

I've had several kids ask about the patch. The first, a precious preschooler with pigtails that looked like pom poms, was fascinated with Amelia's pink and green camo patch. She wanted to know what was wrong with Amelia's ear. Claire, with the authority that only comes with being five years old, rolled her eyes and said, "it's not her EAR. It's her EYE. And there's nothing WRONG with it. It's learning how to SEE."

Not quite right, but I appreciated her enthusiasm. At least I won't have to worry about Amelia's sisters taking up for her.

Monday, June 22, 2009


My second baby is three, or in her words, "free". I know it's cliche to ask this, but seriously, how have three years gone by already? Someone please tell me why my babies keep growing up on me.

Arden has been anxiously awaiting this birfday (her words) for weeks. It's as if she knows that "three" graduates her from the toddler category and places her firmly in the preschooler category. She is eager to get older, desperately trying to catch up to Claire, not understanding that she'll always be on a two and a half year delay.

She choose her potty (party) location herself. Chuck E Cheese--a location I agreed to only because Claire also celebrated her third birthday there. She was clear about wanting Tinker Bay-yell (Tinker Bell) on her cake and a new bike as her present. She decided on these details weeks ago and never once waivered from them.

That's one thing about my Arden--once she's made up her mind, she's made up her mind. This isn't always a good thing, as it makes for one very stubborn kid, but it does mean that she's not going to waste 30 minutes in the toy aisle at Target trying to decide what to buy with the $5 she got last week and then change her mind in the checkout line (claire).

She enjoyed every minute of her party--playing with her friends, meeting Chuck E Cheese, blowing out her candles three times, opening her presents (especially opening her presents) and having a day that was all about her.

Free years old. Can you believe it? I guess this means it's time to give up the paci. Also the biting. And, probably the hitting and pinching. Hmmm...Looks like we have a big year ahead of us.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Big Girl Stuff

So. It seems I have a couple of other kids who, over the past few weeks, have been sidelined (at least in terms of this blog) due to that four letter word called PHPV. They have remained blissfully unaware of what's going on with Amelia, other than to mention her in their nightly prayers, and I'm grateful for that. But, because time marches on, my big girls continued their normal activities and had a lot of fun in May.

The Dance Recital That Almost Never Was...Arden decided at the rehearsal that she "hated that stage," "hated that tutu," "hated that song," "hated those shoes"... You get the point. It took major coercion to get her there, and then there was a brief heart stopping moment when her class took the stage and we heard a familiar "HEEEYYYYYYYY...." coming from the dark stage. But once the lights came up, Arden seized the moment and took command of the stage.

Claire, of course, was excited to be on stage and looked beautiful in her big pink tutu. Because she doesn't like to do anything incorrectly, she had her head turned to the side almost the whole time, watching her teacher performing the moves in the wings.

Summer gymnastics started and my little Mary Lous were so excited they could hardly stand it (could someone please tell Claire that the hang loose sign is

Mother's Day Tea at Claire's preschool. Claire's class put on a performance for all the moms and then presented us with gifts and tea and cookies that they had made. It was soooo cute!

Arden's End of the Year Program. She had the same feelings about this stage as the one at the recital, but again, once on stage, she totally hammed it up. And she kept her hat on the whole time--a big surprise.

Last Day of School. And Claire's last day of preschool. Ever. I don't have to tell you how sad that made me, although I know she's so ready of kindergarten.

May was a complete blur, for so many reasons. This year, we're particularly thankful for lazy summer days.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Where We're At

Yesterday, we took Amelia to Little Rock for a follow-up appointment. The news was good! Amelia's retina has improved beyond what her surgeon had expected could be possible based on what he saw during her surgery. Don't misunderstand--her condition is still far from good, but this small victory feels huge to us. Dr. B was hesitant to tell us what this means in terms of her prognosis, but said "Let's just see what the Good Lord does with her."

Sounds like a good plan to us.

Over the last several weeks, I've started at least five posts on Amelia's eye condition. They all remain unfinished, and all signs point to them staying that way. For some reason, I've found it much harder to write about this experience than to actually live it.

The short story is that, while Amelia handled the surgery very well (probably better than her parents), her eye was in much worse shape than her doctors had originally thought. Some day, I'll recount the horror I felt when her surgeon emerged from the OR not 15 minutes after taking her back and asked me where Jason was (um.... Starbucks?) because he needed to talk to us. I think I'm still suffering from post traumatic stress disorder from that one, so I'll save it for another post.

For now, Amelia's prognosis remains uncertain. Her lens had to be removed and her retina was partially detached. These two unexpected events open up a new set of possible complications for her and make it difficult to know what her long term vision will be. We will hopefully find out more when we go back to Little Rock later this week.

The good news is that our sweet girl is as sweet as ever. And, other than a red, irritated eye, she's pretty much back to normal. Now we wait, which is proving to be the hardest part of all.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Happy Day

Yesterday was a good day. No worries about eye drops, eye pressure, or the contact lens that my four month old will start wearing next week. No stressing out about eye patches or glasses, no freaking out about swelling and redness in Amelia's eye, no tears (from me or Amelia) when she got her four eye medications.

Instead, it was a day filled with sunshine, spent playing outside from lunchtime until bedtime. Bikes, scooters, Barbie Jeeps. Bubbles, chalk, cartwheels. Honeysuckle and wild flowers, picked by my biggest girl and placed carefully in the vase she made me for Mother's Day. And lots and lots of giggles.

It was one of those days when everything feels right with the world. Where you find yourself taking mental pictures instead of digital ones. Where you breathe in the life of your children and feel, in that moment, more blessed than you've ever felt before.

Life is good. Not always easy, but so, so good.

Sunday, May 17, 2009


Amelia's surgery is tomorrow morning. Please pray for our sweet girl. We'll keep you posted.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

A Reprimand

Last night we had dinner with my parents and siblings. We spent half the time trying to get my brother to tell us who would be headlining the walmart shareholders' meeting--to no avail. We spent the other half talking about what we've been reading lately.
When my sister asked me which book in the Twilight series I was on (I know. I KNOW.), I told her the third one. My mom, in all seriousness, looked at me and said, "If you have time to read, you have time to blog."

Monday, April 27, 2009

Disney World

It really is the happiest place on Earth.

And Magic Kingdom is...well, it's pretty magical.

And those princesses are everywhere. And by "everywhere" I mean "at the end of a very long line in which you will wait at least thirty minutes in the blazing sun in order to get them to sign your child's autograph book and take a blurry snapshot".

The girls loved the rides...

Well, except for It's a Small World. Arden had mixed feelings about that one.

Amelia even got in on the fun.

That last picture is just because there's nothing cuter than chunky baby legs.

We had a wonderful trip and the girls were so good. Of course, Grandma Becky was a huge help with that! We can't wait to go back--Claire is already plotting our return.