Sunday, May 29, 2011


Our baby is three!  And if she heard me say that, she would quickly respond, "I'm NOT a baby!  I'm a big gull."  She's still working on pronouncing those R's.

I took her out on a birthday photo shoot.  She is going through that fake smile phase that makes photography challenging.  I have never been so grateful for a digital camera.  I took over 200 pictures of this cutie in thirty minutes.  And then I quickly narrowed it down to my favorite 75.  :)  I won't post *all* of those.  But here's a glimpse of Caroline at three.

 She has started sleeping in a little bit--at least for her.
She now wakes up between 6:45 and 7 most mornings.

She has been a milk chugger most of her life,
but has recently grown out of it and prefers OJ.

 Has also become our pickiest eater.
Some days we wonder how she gets by
with consuming as few calories as she does.

Is done potty training.  Yay!
But now we're working on potty perfecting.  Boo!

Has developed some intense fears lately.
Some nights she's afraid to go to sleep.
She's terrified of bugs. (I sympathize!)
Even when we're driving, if I take a corner too fast,
she yells, "Slow down, Mom!" because she's frightened.
I hope this is a phase.

In this photo, she's trying to figure out how to hold up three fingers.
It's tricky!

A few of her favorites:
TV show:  Phineas and Ferb
Movie:  Tangled
Food:  Chicken
Treat:  Candy--especially fond of Airheads
Toy:  Any of her stuffed animals or dolls
Things to do:  Hang in the tree, ride her kitty bike,
go to the science center, have friends over to play.

Caroline is a fun and silly girl. 
She makes us laugh. 
She is a great shopping buddy. 
We.  love.  her.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Nature walk

Just about every Monday, you can find Caroline and I on a walk with our friends.  We love our walking group.  Or stroller brigade.  Whichever name you prefer.  I love getting some exercise.  Care Bear loves playing with her friends on the playground when the walk is finished.

A few weeks ago, we had a more exciting walk than usual.  It was full of animal life. And Caroline was LOVIN' it.

First we saw baby ducklings in the lake.

They are just WAY too cute.
I wish the duckling phase lasted longer.

Then we spotted an adorable baby turtle crossing
our walking trail.  Clara picked it up and showed everyone.

But the BEST part was when we got back to the park
and TJ let the kids play with the baby chicks he got for Easter.

Caroline picked out the one she loved.
And she didn't put it down until TJ left.

She even took it for a ride down the slide.

Every week since this one Caroline has asked about the baby ducks, the baby turtle, and the baby chicks.  And we haven't seen any of them since.

But last week we did see this cool duck:
At least I thought it was cool.
It was not a baby,
so Caroline was unimpressed.

Friday, May 20, 2011

How our garden grows

It's garden planting time.  We LOVE getting our seedlings in the ground, caring for them, and watching what happens.  Last year's garden was a bust.  We had beautiful, big plants...and hardly any veggies.  Frustrating.  So, this year we decided to go with fewer plants and see what happens.

 We went with tomatoes (big and small), lettuce,

 sugar snap peas, and zucchini.

Plus, our raspberry bush from last year is still alive.  Yes.

 We'll have to wait and see if our new planting methods work.

 For now, these little sprouts

 and blossoms hold the promise of good things to come.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Celebrating Moms

Some of my greatest joys are found in motherhood.

 I absolutely love being a mom.  

 I love having mommy friends who serve me, 
set examples for me, 
and help me along the way 
as I learn and grow as a mother.

  It will be a lifelong journey.

I am blessed with two amazing mothers in my life.
 the one who raised me 

and the one who raised Andrew. 

They continue to serve me.

 And teach me.

I hope I can be like them when I grow up.

 Happy belated Mother's Day!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Future BMXers

Near our home is a plot of cleared land.  I think someone was planning to build townhomes before the real estate market crashed.  So the land had just remained empty for the past few years.  We've seen people riding dirtbikes and four-wheelers there and decided to take the kids on their bikes and give it a whirl.

Caroline wasn't so sure about riding around in the dirt and mud.

But she gave it a little try.

Whit had fun riding around, but didn't try anything crazy.
She's a smart girl.

Brandon was all over the place.

He might not like roller coasters,
but he is a little daredevil on his bike.


Woo hoo!

And I'm happy to report that there were no major injuries.
Took me back to my days of riding bikes 
around the desert with my brothers.
Good times.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Caroline goes to the dentist

Caroline had a BIG first:  a visit to the dentist's office.  She was extremely excited about it and talked about it for days beforehand.  "Is it Tuesday yet, Mom?  Do I get to go to the dentist today?"  That's my girl!  I was surprised because she is my only child with doctor anxiety.

 She was happy as could be!

Until Miss Alice actually wanted to put tools in her mouth.
Then she got a little hesitant, but hung in there.
Way to go, Care Bear!

The funniest part was how much she LOVED her 
"goodie bag" with new toothbrush, paste, and floss. 
She carried it with her non-stop for the next three days.
Even out to dinner.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011


Our church's annual talent show was last week.  Unfortunately, Andrew was out of town which messed up my plans for a fabulous performance with Michael and Shelley.  Maybe next year.  Whitney and Brandon both shared talents.  Whit sang "Part of Your World" from The Little Mermaid.

She loves to sing!  But not to be reprimanded.

And Brandon played two songs on the piano:  
Ode to Joy and Toymaker's Dance.

His piano lessons are going so well and it was fun to see him sharing.

This year, there were tables set up to share visual talents as well.  Whitney shared two pieces of artwork that she's done in Mrs. Bettini's class.
 A self portrait

And a painting of vegetables.
(My personal favorite!)

Way to go, kids. You rock!

Friday, May 6, 2011

Maryland friends

Our friends, Christian and Mandi, have moved from NY to Maryland.  When I checked Mapquest to see how far they were from Williamsburg, it was a quick three hour trip.  Three hours?  Piece of cake.  We checked out of our hotel and hit the road.  But then we hit the DC traffic.  And it started SEVENTY miles away from our destination.  D'oh!  Ended up taking us six hours.  And reminded us of another reason we're grateful to live in a mid-size city and NOT a big one.  :)

We had a fabulous (but way to short) visit with Christian, Mandi, and their girls.  And celebrated Easter early. 

 We hunted for eggs.

 Enjoyed our spoils.

 Had fun with Christian's ipad.

 Had even more fun with the Barbie jeep.
(Caroline did a lot of driving on this vacation.)

 Brandon's manliness did not deter him from taking a turn.

 Chased each other around the park.

 Threw alley-oops.
(How do you spell THAT?)

 And dunked.

 Also colored eggs.
That weren't quite hard boiled.
We found that out the hard way.
When Christian and I dropped several.

 And we did all that in less than 24 hours.

Next time our visit will have to be longer.
And can we take a helicopter?
Any other ideas on how to avoid that nasty traffic?