Wednesday, July 28

mountains and sunsets.

 (the fowler focus; a sweaty, windblown mommy)

right now we should be on a plane, headed to visit my family in utah. 
(i say "should be" because i wrote this ahead of time.)

i have been trying to not think about the trip because it just makes me too excited and stressed (in a good way) and i am totally unable to function. i can't control my mind while i sleep, though, and i have been dreaming about mountains. 
i saw timpanogos in a dream and it was like my brain knew every little feature.

i've been dreaming about sunsets, too. 
of course, we have sunsets in georgia but they aren't quite the same. 

 (blue eyes; gettin' addicted early)

the other day, ellie and i took a little drive and i finally caught a decent sunset out in madison county. we had a drink the 'donalds parking lot and enjoyed the view, then drove a little further out into the farm country while the light disappeared. it was really peaceful. 

you may or may not hear from the fowlers during the next seven days. 

we are on vacation!

p.s. - would it be too weird if i asked you to send good vibes our way? 
because we have pretty bad luck when it comes to vacations.

Tuesday, July 27


ellie and judge are pretty much on the same page right now. 

they both 
lick feet
chew shoes
try to steal food from my plate
crawl underneath and behind furniture
curl up for naps
whine when they are bored
want to be fed at an exact time each morning
let me know when they have "business" to do
have terrible gas
get up in my face to sniff me
love garbage
 refuse to hold still when i want them to hold still
crawl around, getting into trouble 
give really, really slimy kisses

and i love them both
(but judge less, because he stinks more).

Monday, July 26


 mommy's hideout, hidden away in ellie's closet.

ellie's hideout, under mommy's hideout.

daddy's hideout is the garage gym. 
his is probably the most elaborate of all the hideouts.

everyone needs a hideout of some kind or another.

Sunday, July 25

some rules were made to be ...


i broke some of my nursing dietary restrictions.
what's a little chocolate birthday cake? or some baked beans?
it's a week's worth of unsettled baby, that's what it is.
a week for each slip.

i'm pretty sure it's why ellie stopped sleeping through the night for the past two weeks.
my last infraction was last sunday evening and last night was the first time she's slept through the night since i had that chocolate cake on july 10. combine that with the extreme stress i'm battling and the unbelievable heat/humidity and it makes for one pooped momma.

at least i have a dreamy peanut butter pie (with nutter butter crust) to pick me back up.

oh, and an ellie in a box:

in this one you can really see her blue eyes and light colored hair (yes, she is slowly but surely getting more hair). it looks kinda strawberry blonde to me. i think her eyes just keep getting bluer and bluer. what do you think?

Thursday, July 22

5 months!

 when did this happen?!
i'm looking at her six month size clothes thinking "she can't be that big."
but she is!
as somebody eloquently put it: "it looks like she hasn't missed any meals."

she's five whole months old. 

 there she is, trying to wind up her toy bear by herself. she's bright and curious. she's always moving. i think she must be going through another growth spurt, because she has stopped sleeping through the night. she is just too hungry. she chews and growls and makes rude noises and sings and squeals and she never stops wiggling. she's finally getting more hair!

ellie likes:


ellie dislikes:
getting banged up while exploring
being stuck
falling asleep
staying asleep

we love her best of all.

and she thinks dresses are yummy.

Wednesday, July 21

uh, where's the baby?

lame joke.
that's what daddy said when he saw beanie wearing the outfit her aunt tatum found for her.

months and months ago, my sisters and mom sent a package full of baby clothes in the mail.
"you'll know which one i picked," my sister told me.
she was right. totally tatum. tatum, next year's ffa president. tatum, who is my only sister who has brown hair and eyes, like me. tatum, who went skeet shooting with her prom group. tatum, who is raising her own little sheep! tatum, who is one of the toughest girls i know. tatum, tatum, tatum.

(stole these from her facebook.)

well, i think ellie has decided she is a girly girl.
well, maybe she doesn't like being a photo opportunity or the butt of a joke. sorry, tatum, i tried.
(well, really, i think she was hungry.)

Tuesday, July 20

time flies.

with the arrival of two beautiful new second cousins,
one from daddy's side and one from mommy's side
(darla ruth, july 14 and ixchel taylor, july 19)
i've been thinking back to that cold february day when our little eleanor marie made her debut.

here she is, just over two weeks old:

aaaand here she is, four and a half months:

she'll be five months on thursday!!

it wasn't very long ago, but it is still hard to believe she was ever that small.
or that helpless.
or that immobile.
or that quiet ...

oh, she's the world's best rascal.

Monday, July 19

live-action baby!

grab some popcorn!!
because (finally) here are some movies that i've been trying to get on the blog for weeks!
sorry, i know this is not your usual glance-and-go post, 
but you get to see this baby in action.
 warning: i'm not going to win any awards for cinematography, editing or directing. 

 some giggles:

some doggie love:

and a reece's pieces monster:

Saturday, July 17


last night she chased the water and tried to stop it from going down the drain.

p.s. -
husband says she has an "unusually long" bumcrack.
what do you think?

Friday, July 16


judge is ellie's best friend.
i'm not sure how he feels about her, though.
now that she's interested in playing he isn't so keen on the idea.
he does like to curl up by her feet when she sleeps.

i have a video of her playing with judge, but blogger will not let me load videos.
so you're missing out on seeing her laugh and play with a dog
(in the video, he leaves the room and her face gets soooo sad).
so everyone complain to blogger! or teach me how to do it right!

in the meantime, here we are playing computer:

kinnnn jgv
b vvvvbbbp
= ..jkl / czxxxzx bx6t obb 9. i9 '/*'
00 mk
0u, hgss z, sdg. /

(that's what ellie had to say on the matter.)

(she also opened a few random applications i didn't even know existed.)

Tuesday, July 13

on the move.

she's moving.

she scoots and rolls and wiggles her way around, especially when i'm not looking.
in fact, mostly when i'm not looking.

her new favorite activity is rolling next to or under furniture and falling asleep. i'm not sure what that's all about, but whatever works.

she loves playing under the chair especially. in fact, the other day i caught her underneath the chair, gnawing away at the leg.

i'm going to have to start babyproofing.

Monday, July 12

baby daddy.

on friday, i took ellie to the library. she has been a few times now and she has (so far) been surprisingly well-behaved. so far we don't get any dirty looks at all, only sweet ones.

you have to know that our library isn't like the library where i grew up. it's a lot more "public" than little old pleasant grove's library. by public, i mean that anyone and everyone goes there. it's right on the bus line. it has free internet. it has air conditioning and restrooms. you catching what i'm throwing? okay, i'll make it easy: it is sort of a magnet for weirdos and crazies and downright tough customers. it's also a magnet for normal people, too. i'm just saying that it doesn't always attract the nicest crowd.

anyway, i had ellie in the baby carrier. as we were walking in, a gangster that was sitting on the bench outside started talking to me. let me explain again: gangster does not mean teenager with baggy clothes and an attitude. a gangster, outside of utah, is born-and-raised-in-the-projects, rough-looking, doo-rag-wearing, gold-teeth-grilled, pretty intimidating guy (to a small-town white girl like me).

he says, rather nicely: "oh, look! you got your baby. it's a girl?"

"yeah," i say.

then he asks me:

"is the father in the child's life?"

um. well.
i was so not (ever in my life) expecting that question. i didn't know what to say. so i laughed, of course, very nervously and said "oh, yes. he is."

"he better be! 'cause you two is just too good-lookin'."

which i am taking as a compliment, i guess.

i called husband and told him the story so we could both laugh about it. funny as it was, the rest of the weekend i haven't stopped thinking about it. two things come to mind.

a) how sad is it that this was the first thing he thought of when he saw a mother and child? what kind of life experiences have lead him to see a baby and immediately wonder if the dad is around? how many other people out there think like that? i know i have never wondered if a baby has a daddy that wants to stick around. what a shame that anyone has to think that way.

b) i am so glad that it has never been a question for me. first of all, i never had that question with my own father. more importantly, my child's father is here, with us. he wants to take care of us and play with us and cuddle us. he works hard to give us a good life and make us smile. there are some moms out there who have the strength to do it on their own, but i don't think i'm one of them.

this is what happened later a few hours later on friday afternoon, after daddy came home from work:

notice the boots and lunch box on the floor. notice that the work clothes are still on. and notice the carebear who is a part of this naptime scene.

i know it's sappy of me, but i'm really just so glad that my baby daddy is around.

Friday, July 9

girl's weekend.

one of the reasons i was absent from the blog is this:

daddy was gone the last weekend in june. he went to his sister's wedding in d.c./virginia. unfortunately, the drive would have been a bit much for our screamy ellie, so she and i stayed home with judge (i know, boooooooo!).

we had a girl party ... well, girls and doggie party. stories, dumb tv shows, sewing, the young victoria, ice cream, etc.

i was able to catch a little bit of laughter on camera while we played,

but blogger has been a real pain in the butt and won't let me load the video.
boooooooooo. hissssssssss.

at least we had a few smiles --
because we also had an emergency trip to the vet
(we have finally won the war against the fleas, though!).
oh, and a late night trip to the store after we lost the last pacifier. screaming allllll the way.
oh, and both nights we passed out on the couch after bedtime screamfests.

we were so glad to see daddy. we sure missed him.

and, as much as i would have loved to be at the wedding, i'm glad that i spent the weekend with a fussy child at home and not in the car.

also, there was a lovely open house the week after the wedding at it was here in georgia. thank heavens. it was much easier and still very fun to go celebrate david and ann.

i also spent the rest of that week making this for the open house
(and there is another reason i wasn't active on the internet - sewing with a baby around is almost impossible):

and i found a very similar one for ellie to wear. matchy-matchy fun. we'll get a picture sometime.

oh, and, in case you were wondering, this is what ellie was doing while i was wrapped up in my sewing project:

Thursday, July 8

finally over it.

i had this long-term relationship. three years. it finally had to end when i moved away and there was just no way to make it work long distance. it has been over a year and i have been slowly but surely working on getting over it. yesterday, i think i really hit a milestone. i could finally say
"i don't need you anymore."

this relationship wasn't with a person. it was with a place - a place called sundance.

i worked in the deli at the sundance resort for three years. i also worked as an ambassador for the events and i helped in the general store from time to time. i got addictions to fine jewelry, celebrity-sightings and gourmet food.

i got used to eating amazing pastries every day. and bacon. and fresh fruit. and smoothies. and ice cream. things that i never really ate growing up - artichoke hearts, feta cheese, kalamata olives, hummus, avocados, horseradish, pastrami - these were at my disposal whenever i wanted them. i had freedom to create new menu dishes using whatever ingredients were available (and most things were available). i even learned to like foods that i had despised, like cucumbers and green peppers.

when i moved to georgia i found myself buying groceries and eating at home. it took a long time to get used to my new life. i couldn't just go grab a bowl of soup or fill up my soda cup or eat a cookie unless i bought it and made it myself. over time i found myself making little strides toward a life without sundance.

i have successfully made apple turnovers, corn chowder, chipotle sauce, dutch apple pie, cinnamon rolls, chicken salad and many other tasty things. things that i thought i wouldn't see the likes of after leaving sundance.

then, last week, i made this salad:

the next day, i had a wrap with lettuce, pepperoni, olives, mozzerella, artichoke hearts and light caeser dressing. for dinner, chicken quesadillas with homemade guacamole and salsa.

finally, yesterday, i did it.
i made a blueberry rhubarb bar.

a friend from church had this recipe on her blog for rhubarb bars and i modified it. next time, i'm adding chopped walnuts to the oat mix and i will have it perfected.

i ate one for breakfast this morning and i thought,

"i don't need you anymore. i can do it myself."

now if i can only get the mountains in my backyard
(but never have to drive in bad weather conditions),
i'll be set.

Wednesday, July 7

4 months!

it's a little (a lot) belated, but ellie is four months old!

last week we got her measurements and shots. she's in the 75th percentile across the board.
she weighs 14 lbs 6 oz and she's 25 inches long. yes, big girl!
she still doesn't have a whole lot of hair on top, but everything else is growing.

she has really grown up a lot this past month. she's rolling all over the place and wiggling nonstop. her grip and her hand-eye coordination have gotten pretty good and she is starting to get into things. she makes tons of noises and smiles constantly. well, okay, she doesn't smile constantly. she has developed a really powerful scream and she lets us know whenever she isn't happy. she shows a lot more emotion now: scared, sad, frustrated, grumpy, excited, shy, pleased, coy, the works. she loves to cuss me out. she also moans like a little motorboat when she's tired.

she has started sleeping in her crib and, most of the time, she sleeps all night. sometimes it takes a lot of stories to get her to sleep, though. we've finished abel's island and fantastic mr. fox and now we're reading grimm's fairy tales and the jungle book. she sat in her high chair for the first time last week. she slumped over to the side, of course, but it helped her from dropping her toys on the ground. she has really started to like her toys. actually, she's pretty interested in everything.

ellie likes:

her feet
her pacifier
ceiling fans
daddy's guitar
mommy's silly noises
other kids
mommy's hair
when daddy comes home

ellie dislikes:

stuffy noses
when she can't reach her toys
when mommy makes dinner
being ignored
being too tired to sleep

we love our eleanor.

(even when she is a whiny little wiggle worm. more often than not she's a smiley little wiggle worm, though.)