Friday, April 27, 2012

Road trip!

We are taking our first road trip en famille this weekend, to go visit M's family in the Finger Lakes. Gus, Charlotte, M, me, and a whole lot of stuff will be squeezing into my not-so-big hatchback for the 2.5 hour drive. Here is everything we are taking:
What's astonishing is that really, the volume of stuff is no greater than it was before Charlotte. It's just different stuff.

I will admit, I'm a little nervous about the trip. The drive itself isn't a concern - she's a champ in the car. I'm more worried about how she'll react to having 15+ people around her during her fussy time. Hopefully she'll take a good couple naps in the morning to prepare herself!

As for me, I will have to go for a run tomorrow to prepare myself. I know that the weekend will be packed full of yummy food. I know that because I am bringing this cake:

Well, ok, I'm bringing the remainder of the 9x13 pan. I had to make sure it was ok! It's an applesauce cake from Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook. I love it so much that last year when I made applesauce, I froze it in the exact amounts needed to make the cake. Usually I would frost this bad boy with cream cheese frosting, but it's pretty good as a snack cake without the extra calories. And, let's be honest, I can't make cream cheese frosting because I eat half of it before it gets on the cake. So good!

gratuitous cuteness

Monica over at The Girl Who recently posted about the appeal of dressing babies like tiny adults. It is in that spirit that I present to you Charlotte, dressed in gym clothes:

Because, baby in sneakers, folks. Baby in sneakers.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

"I" finished!

Funny, cuz we all know I didn't really finish this project. No, gentle reader, I sat on the couch nursing one day while M was running about suffering from a fit of motivation, and said to him "could you help me figure out how to hang the letters on the wall?" Next thing I know, he's heading upstairs, hammer, 6' straight-edge, and level in hand.

And you know, it wasn't until I took this photo that I realized - the C is wrong-side-out. Which is too bad, because it's my favorite letter, a bronze sparkly one that I picked special for Charlotte. Hopefully M will suffer from another fit of motivation soon so he can fix it.

Also, yes, I am aware that the Y, & Z look like they are falling. That was a compromise because M and I couldn't agree on the spacing. I still think my way would have worked better, but he was wielding the hammer. 

Back in the saddle again

Running. I love it. I hate it. Several weeks ago, a flyer came in the mail for a 5k run/walk commemorating the 300th anniversary of Middleburgh, NY. So I signed up. And I signed up M, too.

The last time I ran, I looked like this:
Fittingly, for that "Great Pumpkin Challenge" race, I looked like I had swallowed a pumpkin. It felt like that, too. I miss not having a floppy belly.

That race was at the beginning of November, making it about four-and-a-half months since I last ran. So let me tell you, when I went out and did a little run-walk thing with M last week, I felt it the next day. Since then, I've gone on 2 other runs, and I didn't stop once! Sure, when Gus is literally WALKING next to me as I plod up the hills, I'm a little ashamed, but already I can tell that it's getting easier.

I won't be setting any records, but I'm looking forward to giving it a shot. Because, let's face it, running a "fast and flat" 5k will be easier than unmedicated childbirth!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Playing fetch.

Gus clearly is intrigued by Charlotte. I think most of the time he sees her as an object to be licked, though. Today was the first time he's treated her like a person.

I'm pretty sure he put that there, because it was in his toy basket earlier this morning (or maybe she gave birth to a rubber chicken). Maybe he expects her to kick the squeaky toy? I'm not sure. I'm gratified to see that he treats her kindly, though. I'm sure he'll be so happy when she can throw toys for him.

Terrible Tuesday?

Maybe this will brighten your day.


It's her first documented smile.

Thanks, dad.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Two months!

How is this little chunk already two months old? At her 2 month pediatrician appointment, she weighed in at 10 lbs 5.5 oz (nearly 2 lbs up from the one month appointment!), and measured 22.5 inches (1.5 inches longer than last month).

This is her at one month:

And here she is at two months:
She likes:
bath time
kisses from Gus

She dislikes:
Dada's scratchy beard
being carried in a cradle hold
being held if you're not paying attention to her


It's so much colder today than it has been. Charlotte and I are hibernating in lounge clothes, and after a weekend packed with Grandaddy and Mimi snuggles, the little one is trying to catch up on sleep. We spent some time in the Funky Farmyard playing, and I swear when I walked 15 feet away to tend the fire, she was wide awake. When I walked the 15 feet back, I noticed this:
Someone fell asleep during playtime.

And me, I'm using this time to slowwwwwly ease my way into working from home.

Monday, April 16, 2012

An adventure.

On Friday, the park we usually walk in was overrun by kids. Since I'd forgotten Gus' leash, I decided to head to a state forest that's not too far away.
Gus was anxious to get going.
I strapped a sleeping Charlotte into her wrap and we set forth. The section I walked through is so different from my usual surroundings that I felt like I was in a book. With elves.
Doesn't  that seem elven? Makes me think of ROUS. Quick, what does that stand for?*

The woods changed quickly, though, back to the typical hardwood forest, and pretty soon I was on a trail that had obviously not seen much use. It was at this point that I started to consider simply retracing my steps, as I had completely lost track of which direction I was headed in. The only thing that kept me going was knowing that walking out, the sun had been on my right, so in theory to get back to the car, the sun should be on my left. Thank you various hunting magazines that taught me the basics of navigation.

Charlotte, meanwhile, slept on, oblivious to my mounting concern that we would be eaten by a cougar.

Eventually, I happened upon this:
And I was joyful. I knew our sojourn was nearly over. All I had to do was walk to the top of that hill and hang a right, and then go up another hill.

Next time, I'm taking a map.

*rodents of unusual size, from The Princess Bride.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Nursery alphabet wall

Like oh-so-many of my plans, the decoration of the nursery got quickly derailed. As they say, the path to hell is paved with good intentions. My pathway has very many pavers, indeed! I am fo' sho' an idea person. I am less good with follow-through. Love me, love my half-finished everything.

Anyways, the nursery.

One major part of my idea for the nursery was an alphabet wall. I am cheap, though, and paying for individual letters did not appeal to me. When Jo-Ann's had a big sale on scrapbooking paper in January, I stockpiled about 35 pieces of 12x12 paper in a wide variety of patterns and colors. I had this vague idea that I could print out the alphabet in a big font, and use them as stencils. I wanted the letters to have a little depth, so I decided to use foam board to make them slightly 3D (ok, M told me that was the best way). One day, in a fit of motivation, I determined what order I wanted the papers to go in, and labelled them.

And there I stopped. I still had to decide on a font, print out the letters, cut out the letters, somehow adhere them to the foamboard, cut the foamboard, determine the spacing, and hang them on the wall.

And then my brother visited. He decided on a font and a size for me. I tried printing them but evidently I need to re-install the printer driver (or maybe just that update my computer keeps bugging me about?), so M printed them out. Then my in-laws visited. And somehow, this happened:

Yes, that would be my dear husband and his father cutting out letters. After much deliberation, they decided to cut the letters out of the paper first, then glue them to the foam board, then cut them out of the foam board.

This is the letter-gluing process. M used his engineering skillz to fit all the letters (and an ampersand!) onto one and a half sheets of foam board, leaving me with two spare sheets and a new board on Pinterest.

This was my view from the chair-and-a-half. I was nursing Charlotte. That was my excuse for not helping. That, and cooking dinner.

Let's recap. Thus far, I have managed to not actually do more than one or two steps of the entire process. I'm hoping to successfully complete the entire project by only personally completing three steps. Here is my third step:

Please excuse the very strange lighting. Charlotte's nursery is doubling as my seed-starting room for now; the grow light is illuminating the leftmost letters. And is it me, or is the S upside down?

Hopefully I can convince M to hang the letters this weekend. I will feign incompetence and a general inability to hang things in a straight line. Do not speak of my devious plans!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

11.5 hours = 690 minutes of...


Holy smokes Charlotte slept for 11.5 hours last night. I want to shout this from the rooftops. But, since I'm scared of heights and our roof has a very steep pitch

clearly shouting from up there is out of the question.

So instead, I'll just crow about it on the interwebs. And stare adoringly at my darling child and hope for a repeat performance tonight!

I'm also hoping that this borrowed swing will keep her entertained while mama spends time crowing.

Hiking, Baby! (Hiking Baby!)

God I love punctuation. Both of those are true: Hiking Baby went Hiking, Baby!

I'm trying to walk more. Sometimes, I succeed. Other times, I succumb to the siren song of sweet snuggles (apparently I also love alliteration). This week, I decided I'd try to get up to the woods every day. No way was I taking a stroller down those paths, though. So, Charlotte enjoyed the woods from on high:

 I am sporting a stylish Army green fleece of M's.  I never thought I'd say this, but boy am I glad he has 15,000 jackets, because they zip over me and the baby and there's always 14,999 going unworn at any given time, giving me pick of the litter.

Charlotte fell asleep with the first 20 minutes of our first three walks of the week. That enabled me to take ridiculous pictures of neat plants:
Soon to head out on our fourth walk. There's one trail left to do...