About Me

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I'm a hand-holding, swing-pushing, story-telling Mama with a creative streak and a nurturing spirit. I like growing food and flowers (and people, hehe), sewing clothes and quilts, cooking and eating and running, a long, tight hug and the color yellow. I love date nights at home, spontaneous trips to the bookstore and hearing my babies laugh. I am indecisive, exaggerrative and I overuse parentheses. I am reflective and sentimental and quick to laugh. I think I still picture myself as a 22-year old, yet every year my life gets more fulfilling. I am still figuring out exactly who I am. :)

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Happy Birthday Alexander!!!

Four months old...already. And already upset at the obscene amount of pictures his mama takes. Get used to it buddy!!!!! Mama loves you!!

Thursday, May 29, 2008

two new layouts

Here are some recent pages I finished. The first one is in celebration of the five years Noah and I have been in love, and how we didn't think then that at this point in our lives we would already have two kids and a house but we knew we would still be in love, and the second is a list of 23 random things about me at age 23 (in preparation for my 24th birthday in less than a week). That picture of me is when I was 22, hehe, and very very pregnant with Claire. What a difference a year (almost two) makes!!!
I just had to make these two layouts with some yummy new papers (crate paper, cosmo cricket and making memories brands) I got in the mail- they look a million times better in person, I think. I'm so glad I found this hobby (back in middle school I made a scrapbook using computer paper, construction paper and scotch tape! And mom must have lots of photo-based presents we kids used to make her for birthdays and mother's days that are reminiscent of scrapbooking. Those poor pictures- we butchered them! I remember this one present that we made with pictures of all of us kids cut into funny shapes and glued to neon posterboard and framed in cardboard. Bless mom for always saying she loved them!) to document my thoughts along this journey of life! Plus it's really fun to buy the paper!!!!

the CRAZIEST thing I've ever done!

...is bring two kids under age 2 to the dentist!!! We were quite a sight, with a carseat, a huge stroller and a huge diaper bag, espcially because we got moved to four different (tiny) rooms along the way. It actually turned out ok. Claire sat in her seat for almost two hours (I came prepared with books and snacks) and Alexander ended up laying on my chest while I was in the chair but really didn't make a peep! I had been dreading it all night and morning, but turns out I had nothing to worry about! But no, we will not be doing that again. I think I tested my luck too much this morning!

Oh, and no cavities! Woohoo! Dr. Stocks said "Darn, I'm not making any money off of you today!"

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Big-Girl Bed

Claire Bear's crib (with the blanket Nana crocheted in the most beautiful yarn adorning the front) and little table and chairs from Uncle Nathan. Her hats and purses corner with hooks at her level- and one of the best presents ever, the doll stroller from Nana and Grampa. She practically runs through the house with it, and, luckily Noah rigged it so she couldn't anymore, but she used to be able to take off the front wheel (don't ask me how).
Her bookshelf, stuffed animals and toybox (also from Uncle Nathan).
And now, the big-girl bed (with new adorable polka dot sheets I got from Target)
I thought I was excited to begin the transition from crib to big-girl bed (after all, we need that crib for Alexander) but I was wrong. Even as I was moving her toys away from the wall to make room for the mattress, I was still excited, but when I got the mattress in its place, it hit me- once she sleeps in that bed, she is not a baby anymore. I know most people wouldn't consider an almost 21-month-old still a baby, but mama does. So I decided I'm not going to rush it. Maybe one day, a few weeks from now, I'll put her down for her nap in the big-girl bed. And maybe I won't. But I'm not going to put a timeline on it. Truly I'm in no rush for her to be out of a crib, and I'm in no rush to get Alexander out of our room either.

If only it wasn't cruel to stunt their growth I would want to keep them this age forever. Don't get me wrong, I love to watch them grow and learn new things, but it just seems like it's a quick turn of the head and they are a month older. I mean can you believe Alex is almost four months old??? Then again, I wonder, maybe babyhood is so treasured because it is so fleeting. Would we be so nostalgic for it if it lasted 10 years? Maybe not.

So for now, since I can't stop time, I take lots of pictures, try not to worry if the kitchen floor isn't swept (that's what I should probably be doing right now...there I go again) and take time everyday to just sit and and be- listening to their sounds, kissing their chunky cheeks, singing silly songs. I don't want to look back twenty years from now and think, yeah, my house was clean, but I didn't soak up the sunshine that is my babies. If only.

As promised...

Great-Grandpa Minton was so proud of his little Alexander, and he couldn't stop saying that Claire is "the prettiest little girl he ever did see!" Two little nubs- even though they look really cute in this picture, they looked impossibly adorable in real life! A repeat hairstyle for sure.
Daddy finally got Claire's red flyer put together and took her for a ride in the backyard. She was holding on and squealing so cute!

Meet The Great-Grandparents

Noah's grandparents flew out from Denver this past weekend, and boy did they go nuts over their great-grandbabies! I love the way they are looking at each other in this one.
Grandma was so happy to see Alexander smile at her. She kept saying over and over how cute his toes and blue his eyes are.
That is one happy baby!!!
It was unseasonably cool all weekend (we even got rain!), and it was fun to get Alexander all bundled up with a hat and cozy sleeper. It's usually too warm to do that! I LOVE babies in hats!

I did take lots of pictures of Claire and Great-Grandpa Minton too, do not be deceived by the apparent lack. Will post soon!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

five and a half...

...the hours of sleep in a row with which Alexander blessed me on Sunday night! That's the most uninterrupted sleep I've gotten since he came home from the hospital (not counting the two glorious nights Noah was on baby-patrol). Needless to say, I thought my eyes were deceiving me when I looked at the clock... surely that's a 1 and not a 4? Nope, it's 4:15am!!!!!!!! I practically did a happy dance. But Alex didn't want me to get used to such star treatment, so last night he was up every hour. At least I know he's capable of sleeping longer stretches, right? Right.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

happy baby and future fashionista

Now that he knows how to smile, he treats us to them all. the. time. And we love it! Little miss fashion bug, who always has to have an accessory, whether it is a purse, a hat, a necklace, or as seen here, a dress and a onesie worn as a shawl! And yes, she is about to go digging in the dirt, after which she usually complains that she's dirty, silly girl.
Both kiddies are feeling much better, though both still have coughing fits (Dr. Chang says they both have some "stuff" in their lungs they need to cough up) that sound pretty raunchy. Hooray for the miracles of modern medicine!

And thank you to Noah for taking over baby duty last night (a belated Mother's Day gift) and letting me sleep for 11 hours, lazy bum that I am! Now I'm all revved up for another several months (hopefully that exaggeration, intented for effect only, is just that and not my fate. Oh darn, I think I just jinxed myself) of up three times a night!

Laura, I had a weird dream about you last night where I asked you to drive all the way from San Diego to Clovis so you could drive me to a doctor appointment. You said yes, and then I called you when you were almost here and said "nevermind, I don't need you anymore" and you turned around and drove all the way home. Sorry for taking advantage of you in my dream! Hope the dream means that I'll be seeing you soon.

Happy birthday Sarah!

Friday, May 23, 2008

First Ride

I used to carry Claire in the baby bjorn all the time when she was a baby- we both loved it! I carried Alex in the sling because he was too small for the bjorn for awhile...until now!!

We went on a walk, Noah pushing Claire in the stroller and me toting Alex in the bjorn. It was so much fun for me and Noah to scope out other people's yards, which mostly made us feel bad about our own, but we got some cool ideas to try when the time and money flow more freely, haha. Claire loves riding in the stroller now that walking is old news (she hated the stroller for a time after she learned to walk) and Alex is clearly enjoying his new view of the world! He cooed the entire walk!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

apples in the trash

Today Claire did the cutest thing. She dropped her piece of apple ("ap-po" like she says) on the kitchen floor, and instead of picking it up and putting it into her mouth (like she used to do), she picked it up, walked over to the cupboard located underneath the sink, and dropped the dirty apple in the trash! I guess us saying over and over "we do not eat food that has been on the floor" sunk in! She must have done it like five or six times to different things she deemed trash-worthy. This doesn't surprise me, considering she lately has been into wiping up her messes (usually spilled milk or water, sometimes spilled on purpose) with washcloths she goes and gets out of the drawer herself. She is such a neat freak in some ways!


I always marvel at the obstacles Alexander has had to fight through in that tiny little body, in his short life of three and a half months. Now I can add pneumonia. Yep, he's got it. Really bad. He's doing much better today, but Monday he was extremely dehydrated (we almost had to bring him to the emergency room to get him hydrated via I.V. fluids), white as a sheet with sunken eyes and just completely drained of energy. A few days ago, I was feeding him through a medicine dropper, and most of it just came right back up, either through vomiting caused by his violent cough, or because it simply wouldn't go down. His cry was the most pitiful thing I have ever heard, with hardly a sound coming out. He now has the energy to cry, to eat, to smile and to play, and his skin is a rosy pink. Thank goodness. There is very little pneumonia left in his lungs, which means he is breathing easier. Everyday he keeps steadily improving, thanks to his nebulizer breathing treatments and the amoxicillin.

Claire is also very sick, her with a horrible cough that my dad-in-law thinks is croup. She has been sick since last Tuesday (with fevers of 103.5 at night), and I thought she was getting better, but then she got worse. She wakes up in the middle of the night with coughing fits as violent as Alexander's, and yet she smiles up at me like she feels fine. She has been getting breathing treatments as well, which seem to be helping. I'm optimistic about her feeling much better today since her night was so much better than they have been. I'm crossing my fingers.

Noah and I also caught this really nasty bug, and has manifested itself in possibly the worst sore throat I've ever had. The kind where you can't swallow or eat and you don't even want to try because it's just too painful. Dealing with that, on top of taking care of two very sick babies and a real lack of sleep due to nighttime breathing treatments/babies who need me/need to feed, we are almost at the end of our ropes. I don't know how Noah teaches with such a sore throat, though he did say his students felt sorry for him and behaved themselves, thankfully.

I don't remember what it is like to have a normal day full of chaos, yes, but not so much worrying about Claire and Alexander breathing and keeping down food and fluids, for heaven sakes. I'm hoping that by Monday life will be back to normal, more or less, with maybe just a little cough to deal with.

In the meantime, my mom and my mom-in-law have been just amazing, coming over and watching Claire while I take Alex to the doctor, bringing me groceries, and in general just being here with me. And I have to say, we are spoiled to have a doctor in the family who can come over after work with his stethoscope and check on lungs, and walk over to the pediatrics section of his office to make sure they could fit in his grandson for a visit... we are so lucky. Thanks dad!

Keep my kiddies in your thoughts and prayers so they will feel better!!!


Congratulations big sis on passing your CPA exam! You are super generous, super funny, super beautiful and super smart! p.s. The dress you gave me for mother's day fits me perfectly!!! How do you do that?

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Guitar Hero, Uncle Nathan and The Cream of Tarter Incident

Claire Bear taking a turn at Daddy's favorite video game du jour, Guitar Hero.
He's actually pretty good. He's working on expert difficulty (a little bit almost every night) in preparation for a showdown with some of his algebra students who are also obsessed with the game. It's hilarious to me how he is so particular about the environment in which he plays. For example, the ceiling fan in the living room hums, and according to him it interferes with his ability to hear the beat of the songs. So he turns off the ceiling fan and brings in a floor fan that doesn't hum quite so much. And then he half-jokingly/half-seriously, like only my Noah can, is frustrated because it is a pain to go in the bedroom and bring out the fan for me (I like to be cool when it's 100 degrees outside) when he is the one who can't stand the hum of the ceiling fan in the first place. I just laugh laugh laugh!!! That guitar is as big as she is!
I brought the kids down to Visalia and then picked up Uncle Brendan and Uncle Nathan for Nathan's back-to-school night, which unfortunately happened to fall during mom and dad's cruise :(

There are not many things much cuter than a stage full of preschoolers singing "What a Wonderful World" in sign language!

I love this picture that I took of Claire and two of her uncles on the way to the car after the performance- those legs are still pretty chunky!

We brought Nathan home with us to stay for a couple nights, which was tons of fun for everyone and gave Noah and I a little taste of what three kids will be like. Some things are harder (getting everyone ready to go somewhere, anywhere, and in general more chaos!) and some are easier (Nathan and Claire pretty much occupied themselves which was nice when I needed to do things like make dinner). I told him he had to come back and stay with us and he said "Yeah, maybe for like five nights!"

Cute shot of Nathan and his nephew in the outfit that Nathan picked out for Alexander before he was born!

Of course they had to play some video games! Yes, that is one proud daddy to see his angel girl enjoying Mario Kart.

Friday night=pancake night
Claire=mama's helper
Claire sitting on the counter by the spices=disaster waiting to happen
Mmm, cream of tarter.

Tastes good in snickerdoodles, I wonder how it will taste on blueberry pancakes?
And then she dumps at least 3 tablespoonfuls on the last giant pancake.
That one got tossed.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

First post in my little blog experiment!

It's funny. I love to read and I love to write, but I have never kept a journal. That's not to say I haven't tried, but for some reason, I have trouble making a habit of it.

I knew that needed to change when I was racking my brain trying to remember a detail about Claire's babyhood (just in case you were wondering, I was trying to remember when she transitioned from two naps a day to one) and couldn't. I figure if I had regularly written in a journal, that little tidbit of information would have had a better chance of being recorded and thus remembered.

So my experiment: maybe if my journal is typed instead of written, public (more or less) instead of private, and a tool with which to share details of our life with faraway sisters, then maybe, just maybe, I will keep up with it. Let's hope so!

I leave you with a few pictures and will be back soon with an actual post and not just an introduction!

Alexander James, 3 months

With his tricycle overalls, increasingly chunky leggies and fairly newfound smile

Claire Elizabeth, 20 months

With her training toothpaste, mama's sling and an adorable grin (she is saying "cheese!")