November 30, 2010

December ONE

December ONE

Gray asked me what I wanted him to be when he grows up.


"Oh, you can be anything
you want to be."

He asked if he could be a little each of everything?

I laughed, "like what?"

Oh, like part superhero, policeman, skeleton- with two bone arms, and part cowboy.



I could totally see him being all of that.




On the 1st day of every month I take photos of my children. .You can see previous month one photos here.


November 29, 2010

Breastfeeding Beyond the Baby

breastfeeding beyond

So, she's 26 months old. And I mostly want to be done with breastfeeding but not enough to make it stop. If I let her nurse whenever she wanted, it would be
all I did every time I sat down. So I do have to tell her "no", and that she can have it at nighttime when we go to bed. That is usually a satisfying answer.

As always, of course if she is not feeling well or needs comfort, nursing is not 100% a night time thing.

And I can be away from her for a night or two (not a regular thing but I have done it) and it doesn't affect either of us.

That's how we do things right now.



I joke that she is totally the child that will still want to nurse when she is five years old and I don't mean it to be funny- it's quite a possible reality if I peek into the future, considering her current two-year old self, and so it's a we'll cross that bridge when we come to it kinda thing.

But right now? I don't see this as "extended" - I see it as "continuing."

little one little drink


She's just two.
And totally still my baby.


November 28, 2010

Hold on me

ivy & grandma
Ivy & Grandma

There's this thing that Ivy does where she like gets bigger right before my eyes andstufflikethat and it's, like, so crazy wild.

Some things for you to click on...

November 26, 2010

On top of what's on the bottom

trolley

For a little trip to an indoor waterpark I packed five pairs of swim shorts for Gray. He has this thing where even if they are the slightest bit damp, he will not wear them. Like, he will have to wear his pants and socks and shoes and longsleeve shirt instead, if his swim shorts are the littlest bit still wet.

I think I've got him covered. I made sure of it this time. As much as I'd love to tell him to suck it up, I am erring on the side of making everyone happy.


Puffs up my chest, feels like a good Mom thing to do.

Until I realized that I only packed Gray five pairs of swim shorts. No pajamas. No underwear. No other clothes. And definitely not his sandals.

That seems to be the way it goes.


November 25, 2010

A Babywearing Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving from the Adventures in Babywearing and Sakura Bloom families...

Sakura Bloom is thankful for the outpouring of support from the blogging community to help save babywearing. We remain touched by your words and stories, your photos and your love. This year as the Sakura Bloom family gathers around our table, we will be giving thanks to the many amazing women and men who spoke up for something they believe in. We raise our cider-filled glass to you and thank you from the bottom of our hearts.


A huge thank you to everyone that linked up in our babywearing call to action. Let me just say, you made a difference. If you took the time to open your heart and link up here, I've got something special to share with you. Please email me at stephanie.precourt (at) gmail.com for more details!

I hope you had the best day, no matter how you spent it!


Related posts:
You can not recall my arms. Alternate title: BABYWEARING IS SAFE.
Adventures In Babywearing 2.0
The Straight-Jacket For Babies
Babywearing Bloggers Blogroll


photo: sara sophia of lovesarasophia.com




Thanksgiving Days

This was last year's post. I hope to re-create it, even better, this year.

(And look how young every one is. How does that happen, in just a calendar full of days?
)

thanksgiving banner by Carter

thankful gobble thankful.

Grampy & Gray

that used to be me up in his lap.

read a book with Mimi

no tv but lots of books to read together.

Mimi & Ivy

where's your monkey there he is!

Ivy & Mommy

shh shh shh

hubby does the dishes

hubby does the dishes (a lot) and for this i'm very thankful.

Dad

my dad. this just in: i possibly could live just to see him happy.

we are thankful for...

what we're thankful for.

so much.


November 24, 2010

scenes from the winter closet

winter closet

Getting the closet winter-ready: putting away the fall jackets and flipflops and hanging all the heavy coats. Seeing what still fits.

Yo, keeping it real my closet is usually all empty hangers and an avalanche of coats and scarves and boots and bags on the bottom that pour out when the door opens.

But I hung stuff up and it looks nice and neat for now.


sweaters


For every neat and straight room in my house there are three with their doors closed so you don't see the mess.

I have my piles, and I open the doors I feel comfortable with myself you looking inside.


try on


It's just easier to keep some doors closed.

For now.



November 22, 2010

shimmy shimmy

rebel reclaimed masked busts

I never return our things to the library on time, but I always pay my fines.


I could have gone one more day without coming home this past weekend.

rebel reclaimed chalkboard

I nursed Ivy almost immediately when I returned, but only because she asked.

I kinda alot want to be done nursing, and (selfishly? rightly so?) I want to get my body back in order.

rebel reclaimed shroom


I feel quite peaceful about Thanksgiving this year. It used to be my "trigger" day and I've written about those times here. I am happy to say that I'm so much better this year.



rebel reclaimed nook

I want to be a tiny mouse and live in this store. [Rebel Reclaimed, Grand Rapids, MI]

I am listening to Calypso music right now. It makes me shimmy my shoulders. And makes me happy in the moment.

It's a CD I got from the library. And it's probably already overdue.


November 21, 2010

Welcome Home Mommy

Upon my arrival home today I was treated to a performance.

iscream


Welcome home Mommy! We're glad that you went

to Grand Rapids Michigan, time well spent.

Although we missed you we still had fun

playing and wrestling and drawing a ton.

We drove to Target for popcorn and snacks,

we played in the playroom while Daddy napped.

Watched Veggie Tales and chased Ivy around

but when she was sleeping we didn't make a sound.

Pancakes for breakfast, bacon two days in a row

but all the while we were happy you could go.

We want you to know that wherever you roam

there are five people who love you in the place

you call home.


read by Noah & Carter
written by Hubs



I had such a great time away, and it's so good to be home.


November 19, 2010

Jack Junch

grand reflection

I am here.

At the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel and it is indeed
grand. The drive was beautiful, absolutely perfect. (Especially after picking up my fabulous friend Meagan on the way.)

Could I be swayed to love the ride to Grand Rapids more than Chicago? Quite possibly. It's much closer than I thought, and lovely. And way better billboards.


I checked in and hung up my clothes, put my jammies in a drawer, jumped on my all-to-myself bed and turned on Pandora. It is very peaceful here.

In a bit I'll get dressed up and we'll be off to the International Food & Wine Festival.


(In case I forget to mention it, Experience Grand Rapids is treating me to this all-expense paid weekend. You can follow along here & here. I am so thankful for this getaway.)

I heard back at home that everyone is doing just fine. Actually having a blast... what a good day.



This morning Carter was making a peanut butter sandwich to take for sack lunch and
Ivy said Carter you taking a jack junch?

It can exist... me loving and being mother and not being there every.single.moment. Well, of course it exists, but, until now I didn't find it very comfortable. I am on my way. I am almost there.


November 18, 2010

Make like a tree

nuggle bunny

I leave tomorrow for a dreamy getaway to Grand Rapids, Michigan. By myself. Well, with a small handful of other bloggers but still. In a room with a bed by myself.

I am so torn as I keep internally judging my decisions. Ivy is quite attached to me. Like, literally. She still nurses but will be just fine with me two nights away.

She doesn't prefer to be apart from me. But, I am really strongly feeling that I need to be apart from her and off on my own for just a couple nights.

Then I wonder if this is fair or if it's just plain selfish.

I rationalize.

She loves spending time with Daddy and the fact that this is a weekend puts my mind at ease. Life will be as usual, just with me gone for most of the time. I keep telling the boys- just like when I stay out late with my friends or go shopping and run errands all day on a Saturday.

Kinda like that.

But I can't help but think what if... what if something bad happens and, how could anyone forgive me, a Mother, for going away for "alone" time to nice restaurants and a spa?


My children are my limbs my branches


What if she gets heart-sick for me? Like, what if she's inconsolable?

I will drive right home- it's not that far away- but then I think about it and I want to be selfish. I want to not think that this will even be an issue. I don't want to live life by what ifs. I don't want to make being a mother an obsessive heart-prison.

I don't want to always feel like it's all in my control or my hands because I know

it

is

not.


I think these things and I am so torn.

I love her so much but I really want a break.

touch

And so I feel these things and yet can't imagine being permanently separated from her. As I type she is sleeping here half on my lap, half on the couch. She is always touching me.

And I Love her touch but sometimes

I am


all touched out.

So I want to go away for these two nights and hear that she did awesome. And I want to not even have to think about it- that it just happens and I have a great time and am re-charged! and we are re-united and both will be even better than before.


November 17, 2010

little puffer

puffervest


Um, it has been confirmed that tiny puffy vests are the cutest things ever.


puffervest2


as always, click on photo for ivy's outfit deets.


[tagged #goodweardays]

Happy Day!

happy day!

I feel fantastic this morning.

I went to bed at 9 o'clock last night (a symptom of not having television, I think) and I seriously woke up at 11:45pm thinking it was morning! I was so confused. But I had no troubles falling back to sleep. Heaven!

So, incredibly, I got up, showered, bathed the little two and got ready for the day all before 8am. We're just going to Target and the book store (and probably the cupcake place), but still. It feels wonderful.


Now for some winners, as promised...


The Modern Bird Studios $200 gift certificate winner is Kristen!
The Tiny Prints $50 gift certificate winner is Hyacynth!




November 16, 2010

I can't wait for bedtime

in my arms


I can't wait for bedtime.


It could be morning time, and I'm readying the older boys for school and I think, if I just make it until bedtime.

I watch the clock, and I think, I can straighten up when they go to bed. I can finish the laundry and do the dishes and get my writing done. Maybe even do some knitting, at bedtime.

When the house is quiet, they are safe but not moving, they are still.


And then there I am, at bedtime, finally she's asleep and I find myself not wanting to slip away. I could rest my cheek on hers forever, should I just stay here... what do I have to do that is more important, it can wait, it can wait.


But I do, sometimes I do slither off the bed and pull a warm pillow to her side so she thinks I'm there, and I look upon my boys, and I kind of miss them.


All safe and still, I sneak down and have my tea and sweep floors and fold a towel until my eyes are much too heavy and

oh
motherhood,

I don't know if I will ever understand you.



November 14, 2010

Chai Tea, my little barista

iced chai

Gray makes iced chai every morning for himself and Ivy. He knows just the right amount to pour of equal parts chai and rice milk, adding ice and of course whipped cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon (or cinnamint as he calls it.)

I'm raising him well, eh?


I am absolutely thrilled to share some exciting news this week... there's a few things still falling into place so I will mention them as I am allowed.

For today
, I can finally announce that I am writing for Real Moms Guide again, this time it's All New! with a beautiful re-launch and new writers. It is a huge blessing to have this job at a much-needed time. I am so thankful to get paid to write about things I love and still be at home with my kids.

So, I have like a TON of posts for you to check out if you'd like. Many gift guides that rock- I hand-picked each item myself; it's all stuff I really do love. I will also be writing weekly about keeping it simple during the holidays (and beyond) and, keeping it real, I of course couldn't help myself and included what I want for Christmas.

I'll have something new up there pretty much every day, so you'll want to check it out for fresh posts. It's good stuff, too. And short & sweet. It won't change anything that goes on in these here parts, and is obviously different content. With my voice.

These are some of my faves:

You can see all my articles here (I'm "Steph" - there is another writer that will be going by "Stephanie") and I encourage you to check the whole site out & comment and stuff!


Huge smooches if you do! If I could, I'd have Gray make you a chai!


November 13, 2010

the space between

ponyAlign Center

I was gone most of the day here and there- took Noah to the library, yarn shop (new needles!), and the old world market (cheese! Manchego & Parrano) and then off to sit with a friend while she got a new tattoo.


I wasn't gone that long. But in Ivy-time, it was forever. And I found out she had hugged a photo of me and sobbed. I am not even kidding. I wish I was kidding.

I am going to be away from her for two nights next weekend. I love her more than probably possible but I need to leave sometimes. Mommy has to go places, too, I told her as she pressed into my breast and grasped tightly to my neck.

My heart, as I write this, is not breaking in two. My heart, as I am writing this, feels like it's time for a little space.

I have no idea how my heart will feel next weekend. We will see.

puppy dog eyes

Because, just look at that face.



November 12, 2010

Stowaway

stowaway

My Aunt Diane came for a quick visit from Louisiana and Ivy tried to sneak in with her luggage when she was packing up the truck to head back home. She said 'bye to me and everything!


As if!



I've been interviewed over at Motherhood & Me- lots of fun info about why I do the things I do and how I started blogging and stuff. If you're curious!



Peace & Love: Tiny Prints Giveaway

TP4

I have this thing where I love to have my Christmas cards ready to send out the day after Thanksgiving. I love addressing the envelopes with a Sharpie finepoint, and I love putting them into the mailbox separated by city and state (I totally do).


TPorder

I'm even earlier this year- Tiny Prints again blessed me by letting me design our cards for the upcoming holidays. (See our last year's card). They also have new Flip greeting cards and Circular Ornament cards. I looked and looked until I found exactly what I wanted.

Do you like what I chose?


TP1

It makes my heart swell.

I took the photo but my beautiful friend Mishelle Lane fancied it up for me. I am so thankful for kindness and goodness.

We even put a little trademark-y logo on the back, and got address labels to match.


TP2




TP5

And every time I order Tiny Prints I always use the live chat feature- I ask lots of questions- even silly stuff like, I like this card but I want it for a horizontal photo, what do you suggest... etc, and I have gotten immediate assistance every single time.


TP3
Lulu says "that's me!"

WIN! Tiny Prints is offering a $50 gift certificate to one reader here. Open to entries in US and Canada.


Check out Tiny Prints and leave a comment here to enter. Let me know what you might get with your gift certificate- baby announcement? See a holiday card that you fall in love with (like I did?) Or any comment will do- nothing is really required to enter except be sure there is a way for me to get in contact with you if you win.

Extra entries:
follow me on twitter,
follow @tinyprints on twitter
like tiny prints on facebook
subscribe to my blog via reader or email,

Fine print:
Please leave a separate comment for each additional entry.

I will choose one comment at random after 11:59pm next Tuesdsay 11/16.
Tiny Prints provided my cards and labels, as well as the $50 gift certificate.

I happen to have another giveaway this week- $200 Modern Bird gift certificate. Enter here.

November 11, 2010

Leaving

clay & lulu

Today


was wind blew leaves down upon us as we pushed our kids on the swings

was sun-sweater warming us hot, in November!

was friends

was big leaf in her hair, somersaults through crunchy heaps

sea of leaves

was walk in the crisp wavy sea

was a good farewell

was see you real soon.


November 10, 2010

I'm begging you for mercy

nappy
i love it when she naps


We're still breastfeeding. I can't tell when it will end. She usually only nurses at night (but not always) and sometimes in the morning. It's funny, we could be home all day and she won't want to nurse. But as soon as we're out at the park, or someone is over, she's gotta have it. Also, of course, if she gets hurt and needs comfort. But that's what it's (they're) for. [In my mind.] [And in hers.]


I want my children to have a sense of humor
and more importantly, a sense of mercy.

That has nothing to do with breastfeeding, I don't think. It was just something that came to me while standing in line at the grocery store.




November 9, 2010

Speaking of works of art... Modern Bird Studios giveaway

Modern Bird Studios asked me to submit a photo and they'd in turn create an amazing piece of art mixed out of digital and hand painting on oak composite, just for me.

imagine

I instantly thought of this photo I'd taken of Ivy & Gray holding hands at the apple orchard this fall. I love how it is shown from behind, and looks like they are storybook characters about to sneak off into the woods for a great adventure.

Modern Bird Studios

I AM IN LOVE.

What a fabulous gift this would be- especially as a group gift, and Modern Bird Studios is offering a 15% discount with the code: BABYWEARING (valid until 11/22/2010.) Order by December 1st for Christmas delivery.

Take a closer look at the texture of the paint and wood. Amazing.

closeup

WIN! Even more awesome, I'm giving away a $200 gift certificate to Modern Bird Studios, open to readers in US and Canada. Just leave any comment here for your entry. I'd love to know which photo you'd maybe choose to use if you win? (But really, any old comment will do) AND

[I never do this, but since this is a big prize, I want to offer multiple entries, so]


I will choose one comment at random after 11:59pm CST next Monday 11/15.

Fine print:
  • No previous winners of Modern Bird Studios are eligible to enter.
  • Speaking of which... get more chances to win at My Bottle's Up and Scary Mommy right now.
  • Each comment will be counted as an entry, so be sure to leave separate comments if you do any of the extra methods listed above.
  • Include your twitter name or blog name or some way to contact you if you win.
  • Modern Bird Studios provided the fabulous piece given to me, as well as the $200 gift certificate.


And in case you missed it, I am showing off Noah's fabulous works of art here. (Last night we were googling our favorite artists- found out Van Gogh also had epilepsy! And Noah really likes Frida Kahlo's use of birds and monkeys in her art. Huh!)

I also have another giveaway this week: Peace & Love- Tiny Prints giveaway.

comments closed- will announce winner 11/17.


November 8, 2010

my fingers the bow and pencils word arrows

pencils
word-arrows, by Noah


Maybe I see through the Mother lens.

Every new piece from art class that Noah brings home breathes air into my heart and puffs up my chest. I see something here. I am so inspired.

art2
warhol-esque by noah

I need a bigger refrigerator to hang it all. Or I just need to get one of those cool wire cords with clips to drape along the wall in the playroom (if we ever finish it, don't even get me started, what? didn't I buy paint ages ago? We'll get there.)



I am most excited that my older boys are now ready for a visit to the Art Institute. We've planned a day to take the train and they have their draw pads and pencils ready.

I've told them about the benches to sit on while they observe and sketch.


Self portrait, Noah
self potrait

Yes, I very much miss when they were babies, but this? Being able to share a love of art and see it bloom inside them as they mature and get their own crazy artsy ideas. It's quite indescribable.

art3Align Center

You know, I used to work at the Art Institute.

(OK, so I was a
sales associate in the Museum Shop. Nevertheless, I had access to all of the museum, even behind the scenes and down the dark tunnels and hallways.)

I loved just being there, no matter what-how.

It's like if you want something so badly, or to be or do, get as close as you can get. It rubs off. It brings it true.

The right people or family or church or love or whatever longing... is like that for me. If I can just get myself there, it's good. No matter what I'm seeking or how far away I feel. It's better than not showing up at all.

By Noah

So now
I've moved the paint cans to the playroom doorway.

We're even closer than before.



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