Tuesday, September 25, 2007

A Birthday Par-Tay

So this is Mia, Sophia's good friend, and the birthday girl. She had a "Princess Party" last Friday and I quickly realized that I have a long way to go if I'm going to be an official mom of two girls. I was the only one who didn't own a single piece of princess garb. Thanks to Kodi (Mia's mom), Sophia was able to borrow a fun pink skirt and necklace, but I'm not sure it was enough to detract from her navy polo. I probably should have brought her in something a little more pastel or shiny.... she sort of looks like a 5o's chick in a poodle skirt amongst a sea of disney princesses. Take a look at the cute videos... lots of little princesses dancing around is a precious sight... and is it just me or does it look like I slipped Sophia a sugar pill right before the party? "GO GO GO!" that's her when you hear it....

Monday, September 24, 2007

Still crossing my fingers...

So far so good! She never came out last night... and the morning was relatively normal. It started a little earlier than usual, which I NEVER want, but it's exactly what I expected since she usually talks a little in the 6's and then starts calling for us at 7. I figured she'd come out right when she woke up. Sure enough, at 6:30, we heard a thump, some shuffling, the door open then close, and then watched her fingers pop out under the door "mommy mommy mommy mommy mommy". She must get that she's not supposed to come out... I REALLY hope that sticks. Pretty certain she'll test that a bit more in the future.

Today's nap was the next test, and after one cracking of the door with one eye peering out at me-- she took my direction to go back to bed, and shut the door without a peep. I just looked in there, a little unsure what I'd find...and she's cuddled up perfectly big-girl-esque in her twin sized bed. I love it. Enough to risk awaking her with the flash...

Her room is still a mess with too much stuff squished in so this is only to give some visual of her in her big bed. A good picture of the bed in place, made, and with a bedroom to put it in context- still to come.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Second Time's a Charm?

So yesterday was devoted to Sophia's big girl bed. Since I'd convinced Ross to let me buy the actual "bed", I promised I'd do my best to find a deal on a mattress. Somehow I thought a twin mattress and box spring would cost me like 100 bucks. Figured we'd get the most basic. Well it ends up $250 is much more accurate... and so started the search. I did every Google search imaginable for discount mattresses, checked Craigslist (for new mattresses... not interested in bed bugs), called the local furniture showrooms, and checked the newspaper to try and find the cheapest deal we could. I was convinced $250 was it until Ross found an ad in the paper for a little ghetto show room that sold us their last twin for $50 without box spring. The place was a little.... well.... dingy-- but the bed was in plastic so I felt alright. I mean plastic with holes all over it... practically impenetrable. :) No but really, the place wasn't that bad-- felt good about 50 dollar bed. But then there was the other problem. We only had half a bed. And after running ACROSS town, the two other places we'd found reasonable prices were out of twin box springs. What? I know. And the story doesn't end there.

So I turned back to Craigslist-- determined to finish the bed so she could sleep in it last night. I mean I'd waited long enough... this next baby is only getting closer. So for that, the box spring, I went used. Is that terrifying?? Found a good looking one on Craig’s, had Ross pick it up that afternoon for a whopping 25 bucks. I was a little nervous about the used thing but I figured a box spring... she'll never touch it, it's really no different than buying a used bed frame right? A piece of furniture that was in someone else’s house... but no body really touches a box spring or could pee on a box spring... right? Anyway, my purpose in all of these too many details was that after a day devoted to scouring the town for a mattress set, shopping for sheets and pillows, then assembling new bed with borrowed guard rail, and dressing it with the new bedding I've been so excited to pull out including brand new lavender sheets that Sophia and I were both very excited about... she jumped and jumped on it, climbed up and down on it, curled up to go to sleep on it. And then slept in her crib.

Perhaps I wasn't supposed to leave the crib up. But we ran out of time for projects before her bed time and it won't fit out the door without disassembly. So she ran to her NEW bed like normal (she's a good bed-timer) curled up on her tummy and waved me off "ni-night" I think it's a night time wave but it feels an awful lot like a "shoo mommy-- scat-- get outta here" kind of wave. So I thought all was well with the big girl bed. Stood outside door. Listened to her get down immediately and place hand on door knob. Opened door to mommy standing right there-- shut door quickly. I waited a few seconds-- "go back to bed Sophia" then her fingers slide under the door and she gracefully taps them on the floor for a minute before I open the door... "Back to bed Sophia" and she ran to her crib. "You want to sleep in your crib instead?"
"mm hhh"... with a nod. So she didn't use the new bed. Sigh.

So this was meant to be a quick post (but Ross is at Priesthood Session for church so I've got too much time to ramble) -- my point was this. Tonight-- got in new cute sleigh bed, "ni-night with the "shoo" backhanded wave-- started just like last night. Wasn't really planning on pushing it but she went to the new bed first so I went for it. Waited at door. Nothing. And even as I started this post I thought maybe there was a chance she'd come out... but nothing! So at least for tonight: it's official. Sophia is in her big-girl bed. We'll see what the morning's like. I haven't entertained the thought yet that I could theoretically see her before morning since she's no longer encaged. Hmmm. Maybe a follow up post. But I'm very excited. One transition down. Well that's probably a bit overconfident. One transition started.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Can I pretend it's in no way political?

So Jack covered 'Imagine' and I love the sound of this song. I mean how can you not? Though I wouldn't want to be a part of a world with nothing worth fighting for, no country, no religion, and no heaven, I'm putting the song on my blog because it sounds lovely... and overall, regardless of politics, who wouldn't love to imagine a world of peace. So it's on the playlilst, for now at least. Maybe I'll feel different tomorrow.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

I heart NY

New York City. We arrived safe, sound, and ready to see the sights on Saturday!

First stop, thanks to Levi's pumpkin scone enthusiasm: Alice's Teacup, YUM! Isn't overexposure just sort of refreshing sometimes?? .... it's like you can see us... just enough. Pop out all you want-- no blemishes on these happy ghosts. :)

Rebecca joined us in the afternoon (HOORAY!) and we visited the beautiful library... I can't believe a library can feel like such a magical, timeless place. I mean I love libraries, but ours just doesn't give quite the same vibe. No doubt I'd be a full-on scholar if I had access to this library. :)

Sarah did you take this? Apparantly this a picture of mine and Rebecca's babies deep in conversation.

Does it really need any explanation?

We saw it! My first Broadway show in NYC, Les Miserables. Wow. This may have been my favorite couple of hours of the trip. Second of course to just plain old visiting time with these: two of the smartest, funniest, most wonderful girls I know.

On top of the Met... what a view of the skyline. We talked about the artwork inside, enjoyed eachother, people watching, and our enormous, chocolate, heavenly , frosted Crumbs cupcake (even though an old man scolded us for eating something so "bad for you"). My envy of his wirey old-man legs was not nearly enough to keep me away from that bit-o-heaven.

Lunch at a real New York Deli.... and Sarah looking lovely in the loveliest park I've ever seen. You may have heard of it....

And then there was Pinkberry. It's real. The obsession, the hysteria, the following .... I'm one of them. I mean just look at us, possessed by Pinkberry euphoria. The tangier than usual yogurt, the perfectly fresh fruit, and the strange but wonderful chewy little 'sweet rice cakes'. You can imagine the rock-bottom I hit at the bottom of that yogurt cup, knowing that this was our final New York treat. Thank goodness we had dinner and company with Rebecca and Levi in their ADORABLE apartment to lift my spirits before we left the city to head back to DC.

After a quick drive by (well somewhat near) the Statue of Liberty so I could get at least a little glimpse (I think it goes without saying that two days is NOT adequate to see ALL there is to see in NY) we headed back to DC and arrived at a very reasonable 1:30 am. Well done Sarah.

Highlights from the trip:

-Life long friends-- Felt it confirmed that it is possible-- or maybe even inevitable (in a wonderful way :))

-Being reminded that there's a lot to be said for symbolism and tradition... sometimes I lack a sentimental side.

-Receiving pictures via email of Ross and Sophia at the zoo for the first time and crying. happy tears? not sure. But very happy he was such a super-single-dad, and that he thought to send me pictures. Oh did I miss my babes.

-Witnessing the part of the country that illustrates that: regardless of all of the differing views, the contention, and even corruption in politics, there are so many people with righteous visions, hopes, and dreams that are working hard to make this country a better place. (I wish I could quote Sarah defending DC to Levi--they are two people far better with words than I--would have made for a good bullet, but I only remember her passion and point... another post Sarah?)

-Having so much of Sarah to myself to talk and talk and talk.

-Hearing Sophia say "mommy mommy mommy" on the phone. Tears.

-Knowing that once Sarah surrenders to sleep at whatever awful hour-- no amount of tossing and turning, yelping at the sciatic nerve pain, or prego potty breaks in the middle of the night could disturb this girl from sleep.

-Knowing I was safe in the car at 2 am when I fell asleep and put my life in Sarah's hands- especially since she made it her mission to protect me after realizing that a threat at the White House was not exhilarating, but terrifying to me as I have a two year old at home and think obsessively about who's going to raise her while Ross is at work if I've died in DC. Sigh. Thanks Sarah.

-Seeing Rebecca, who I'm convinced I was supposed to be bosom buddies with in college but missed my chance. Maybe you have room in your new "married friends" circle, Bex? What a girl. If you check her blog you'll want to be her friend too. Or you might never want to blog again because hers' is so dang clever. And their apartment... Harlem, newly renovated subsidized for middle income... yadayadayada... I think the point was, they wanted people like the Smylies there to clean up their city, so they bribed them with the cutest apartment in all of NY. Wood floors, new cabinets, CLEAN, perfect. LOVED staying there. THANKYOU Smylies.

-Hearing Ross tell me on the phone that Sophia made him take down the photo albums to look at all of my pictures. Tears.

-Loved the irony that the one place my sciatic hasn't acted up in the last few months was on the air mattress in Harlem.

-Loved Levi. What a great couple. Pretty sure I'm smarter after having talked to him.

-Dinner at Serafina before Les Mis with two girls that I'd just figured out usually share my weight and height. Three clean plates. I'm talking wiped down shiny with a piece of bread clean. That's when I knew I was in good company.

-Didn't love that Rebecca in her 24 week pregnant state could keep pace with Sarah the gazelle, as I lopped behind them like some gorilla, large, with child.

-Loved EVERY second of it. And at the end, loved every second that got me closer to my sweet husband and little girl. Man did I miss them.

Sarah, roomates, Rebecca, and Levi: Thank you for being the best hosts ever. Sarah- I'm keeping my "I miss you" pain in check with the thought that you WILL come out here soon. Plan it! And thank you for being so wonderful and creating the perfect East Coast excursion for me-- I really am missing you :(

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Across the Country

So I thought I might do everyone a favor and find a way to do just one East-Coast post instead of my normal week-long play-by-play. But I decided against it. It's too much pressure to find my favorite pictures and be in the mood to write about two entirely different and fabulous cities. I'm compromising ... and my goal is two posts: one for DC, one for NYC. Here, of course, is DC... beginning with one of my favorite visual memories of the trip, the Washington Monument. Such a simple structure I thought, but really pretty magnificent in person. It feels like you can see it from anywhere in the city, memorializing a man who led the country to independence, and then became its first President.

This guy with the dreads hollered emphatically in front of the Capitol, sharing his political views with his intent audience of one... or maybe that guy was just taking a picture of the Capitol. Freedom of Speech at it's best. :)

Thursday we did a tour of the Capitol and visited the museum of Natural History enjoying all of the sights up and down "the mall" as we walked. Here we are inside the Capitol. Just like the rest of the city, the Capitol was full of symbols, traditions, and reminders. I had no idea that it was painted so beautifully inside and adorned like a European cathedral.

Sarah outside the Capitol. Don't ask me how she walked around all day in those heels. I lost feeling from the knee down at about noon every day and I was wearing flats... and we didn't really leave the house until 11. Hmmm.... perhaps I'll blame the pregnancy...
In front of the Smithsonian. (Right Sarah?)

“In this temple, as in the hearts of the people for whom he saved the Union, the memory of Abraham Lincoln is enshrined forever.” My picture cut it off, but those are the words above his head. As an enduring symbol of Freedom, the Lincoln monument may have been the most inspiring.

A quote about the women during WWII at the WWII monument that hides gracefully between the Washington and Lincoln Memorials.

Sarah had worked so hard to schedule us a tour of the White House on Friday, my second and last day there. And as we waited for our guide to show, we watched a fire truck enter the grounds, a helicopter land on the lawn, an Emergency Response truck following a police car down the street... and we started to get nervous. After waiting for an hour, and watching Sarah sprint back to the car in wedges to feed the meter, we were informed that our tour was cancelled. Bummm-- er. So we just stole a few pictures through the gate and tried to convince ourselves that the retrieval and destruction of the explosive... or whatever crisis was transpiring, must be more important than our tour of the East Wing. Sigh.

That night we had just enough time for a little shopping in Georgetown (SO cute) before meeting some of Sarah's sweet friends for dinner at a yummy Italian place. It was so nice to see that my lovely Sarah had a life FULL of good friends to take care of her across the country.

A little before 11 that night, we got in the car to head to NYC. Yup. Arrived in Harlem at 3:15 in the morning trying desperately to look un-terrified as Sarah nonchalantly texts Rebecca from the street. But to my credit, really Sarah, could we be any more vulnerable, you with your phone out and your night-time squinty eyes, me, all fat with baby wearing a make-shift backpack out of my duffel with no long strap. One swift move and I'd be lying on the street with no chance of getting up to help you. Let's just count our blessings. :) Rebecca, does my fear of your neighborhood offend you? It's only a result of years of media-produced stereotypes... nothing personal.

The rest of NYC to come... along with lots of photos...

Monday, September 10, 2007

I'm one of them.

I never would have thought I was the 'high-school, vampire, love-story' type. But I heard it recommended from too many different sources, and needed a book to read in Oceanside... and loved it! Now I'm converted, and SO excited that there are two more in the series... And that I have an entire plane trip to and from DC all by MYSELF to read the next one.

DC, New York, Sarah, and Rebecca.... count down: 2 days!!!!

And I should warn, the last picture of Ross, Sophia, and I at sunset---it's a fraud. Something about the lighting made my belly look strangely low and my chest strangely small (which I loved) but it's unfortunately misleading. I am indeed pregnant from my neck to my knees. As proof, these are some comments I heard this past week after being out of town for a couple of weeks: "What have you been eating?!", "Wow you were barely showing before, you got huge!", "I can't believe you have nearly three months to go." Hmpf.

Friday, September 07, 2007

The Birthday Girl!

Along with her old age has come a new concern for having clean hands at all times. I think this is why she ate her cupcake like she was bobbing for apples.

So again, two posts in one day. A little excessive. But we leave for SD again tonight because Ross has a Young Men's beach trip tomorrow so I'll spend the day with my mom and sister. I figure I may as well squeeze in more time with family pre-baby if he's going down anyway. So with another full weekend and a trip to DC and NYC coming WEDNESDAY... I thought I'd better wrap up the eternal Oceanside posts. I mean turning 2? It had to have it's moment of glory in my journal/scrapbook/blog. Thank you Nana, Grandpa B., Nana and Papa for the WONDERFUL gifts. We were in desperate need of some new indoor entertainment for the remainder of summer at our house.
No, summer is NOT even close to over out here.
Thanks again, Marie for the b/w picture at the top. What would I have done without your memory card?

Soaking up the last night...

This was my favorite time of day. Nana and Papa came to visit Friday night, since moments later, we celebrated Sophia's 2nd birthday with cupcakes and presents. It really was hard to watch that final sunset. Ross asked me, "how much life do we let pass before we decide to live where we want to live?" I remember feeling like that when I lived in Hawaii. Like it's amazing how many places we live just to work... to keep living... in that same place... that we don't love... with the hope of visiting for a week a year the place we really love. Hmmmm. Not sure if that makes sense to me.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

And some more...

Ross and Ben going out to surf while Sophia and Grandpa watched.
Is there a rule against two posts in one night? There's just too many pictures and I have no logical order... I just know there's always more... :)

Missy and Avery!

Thursday afternoon we had visitors! Missy, I didn't check to make sure I could post the picture of you-- but, seriously with that tan skin, tiny frame, and colgate smile, you look GORgeous... I cannot imagine you could disagree.

Two little girls in swim suits and pony tails... it doesn't get much cuter than that. It was so fun to finally see the little toddler version of Aves in person. She's just edible. Thanks for coming to see us Missy... I looked forward to it all week!