Monday, April 23

an apology.

i have come to the re-realization that the lighting where we live is terrible
and that makes for some really bad photos.

i have to use my flash in the middle of the day to even get a picture to turn out.

taking pictures at another house proved me right.

example of a picture taken in the middle of the day with no flash at grammie's house:  

example of a picture taken in the middle of the day with no flash at our house:

see, it's a fuzzy, grainy mess! and ellie has crazy eyes!
i know the light is behind them, but this is still typical inside photography around here. 
i definitely don't have the software, equipment or photography expertise to fix it. 

so i'm sorry for the bad pictures that will continue. at least the subjects are cute. 

Friday, April 20

four and a half months (almost five).

i have been thinking about posting a penelope post for this whole month, so hopefully this doesn't end up too long. my little almost-five-month-old is a wonder.

she has doubled in weight since birth and just keeps growing. since she is so big and wearing some of the clothes ellie wore when she started walking, i just keep forgetting how young she is. still, the days of the newborn are long, long gone. she's a full-blown wiggler. i can't keep her in one spot. she rolls and scoots and wiggles and is in everything. she scoots over and plays (chews) toys with ellie, she wiggles around and eats magazines that ellie leaves on the floor, she gets stuck under the furniture... i love it. she also gets really really excited sometimes and her whole body jumps. she gets her legs and arms pumping and it's hilarious. 

i think she's going to love solid food. lately she has been making little chomping noises when she sees us eating. she also likes to do this weird silent lip-sync thing when there is music on. she moves her mouth like she is singing along. so funny.

she is so loud! she loves to sing, growl, scream, blow bubbles and laugh. she doesn't cry much, though. her screams are usually happy screams or even just annoyed screams - she doesn't wail or have meltdowns very often. poppy's so patient, especially when mommy is busy with a certain dramatic two-year-old. her grins are the best and i love to see her smile. she's not stingy with those smiles; she brightens someone's day everywhere she goes. she already has a sense of humor. i know, i'm a crazy mom but it's true. when something too silly is going on, she will give me this look like she would be rolling her eyes if she could. 

she loves toys already and is really interested in everything. i don't remember ellie liking toys this much. poppy will spend hours pulling on her carseat toys and the toys on her bouncer. she will crawl all the way across the room to get a toy. she is very observant and just loves to watch what is going on. sometimes, when she seems upset, she is just feeling left out. we put her in her bumbo in the middle of the action and she's happy again. she also likes to play with ellie, and by that i mean that she likes to be next to ellie and have a toy to chew on.

she recognizes our family and is always really excited whenever daddy walks into the room. she will look and look until she catches his eye and then she will give him her best smile. she also loves ellie. ellie will hold her hand when she is sad and sing and talk to her. she will give her toys. ellie can make her laugh out of nowhere. she listens to all of ellie's stories. it's honestly the best thing ever. poppy even likes to pet the dog! she's so sweet.

she loves:

her daddy
being outside
being around people
kisses (giving and getting them)
falling asleep
car rides

she doesn't like:

except for the usual stuff (shots, sore bums, etc) she really is a content little thing.
oh, she sometimes doesn't like being buckled in her car seat if we aren't moving. 
as soon as we get moving or she falls asleep she is fine.

 (my children look like cartoons.)

here's a video of her doing this new weird squealy noise and making us cry with laughter:

that was her being shy for the camera. she makes the growl-squeak noise all the time now, not just when she's being tickled. ha. 

we love her so much. she is happy and fun and good-natured. she is just a star of a baby. i couldn't ask for a better one.

Wednesday, April 18


my hunter-gatherer on one of her many egg hunts.

easter was so fun.
i can't wait until next year, when ellie will have some competition (a bigger penelope) for the eggs.
she figured that, since she found them all, they were hers to do with as she pleased.
that made for a lot of mouthfuls stuffed full of jellybeans (and jellybean juice leaking all over the place) and horrible screams of "my eeeeeeeggs!! gimme my easter basket!!!" when we tried to put the candy away.
there isn't another chocolate-infused holiday for several months, right? whew.

it was also (probably) the last time i will be able to buy holiday supplies while the girls are with me... well, if i want them to be surprised.

i didn't get a good picture of both of them in their dresses, so i will have to recreate it and pretend it is easter again. trust me, it was cute, even if it only lasted a few minutes.

i may need to take down the easter pictures that she colored. the other night she had a hard time falling asleep because she just kept remembering easter. "mommy, i had a basket and it was full of candy!"
so, in other words, she loved it.

this face!

and this face! hahaha.

she fell over from egg-citement. (sorry.)

fuzzy, but cute. 


Friday, April 13

tgif! or tgif?

i had completely forgotten that it was friday the 13th until a few minutes ago...

and i realized i have had a kinda crappy day so far.

my hair is awful
(i really need to change it)

the dog tried to run off into the woods
(as usual)

i scratched the car a little on one of the cart returns
(and in the store ellie kept saying "the car is just scratched a little bit! i'm going to tell daddy about the car.")

my new dishwasher started leaking
(but i figured out that it is just not closing correctly because it is rubbing on the cupboards)

ellie had a demonic meltdown at the cash register
(it's so embarrassing when you're holding a writhing child under your arm while putting in your pin #)


two sweet cuddly girls waited until six am before coming to snuggle in bed with me
(lately it has been all night and it has been rough)

i have a dishwasher again!!!!!!!
(i can't even put enough exclamation marks there!!!!!!)

ellie has been making up some hilarious songs
(including one that goes "you need to behaaaaave or you'll get a spaaaaaaank!")

and so on.

the good usually balances out the bad.
it seems that my day can be the best one minute and the worst the next,
but at least i know i only have to wait it out for a little while, right?

in controversial news,
facebook bought instagram.
i don't care. what i do care about is that 
instagram finally debuted for android!

and so, i give you 
pictures from the week: 

right now i am trying to keep everyone awake so that we can have a family nap when daddy comes home.
wish us luck, and happy weekend to you.

Tuesday, April 10

more questions and park pictures.

pictures from the park last week!

i'm making an effort to blog, but lately i just want to get out of the house.
can you blame me, with weather (and kids) like this?

do you love that my girls are making the same face? 


back when i played the 11 questions, i got more from chantal.

she says: here are your 11 questions should you choose to play along.

(and i do choose.)

1. were you named after someone and if so whom?

my mom and my dad. brad and cathie. could have been really bad. luckily i ended up with a real name.

2. if you were another person, would you be friends with you?

i guess it depends on what kind of other person i am (like, if the other me isn't a jerk), but i would hope i would at least get along with me. i would like to think it is easy to get along with me.

3. what is the first thing you notice about people?

i have to admit that i'm not very observant. i often don't even notice what color of eyes someone has. i think maybe i notice their attitude via body language. i kind of notice the person as a whole and then break them down. i think i notice hair and eyebrows quickly, too.

4. who do you miss at the moment?

my sister and her brand new baby!!

5. mountain hideaway or beach house?

lake house? i like that idea. 

6. what is the farthest you have been from home?

the u.k. i want to go back to scotland all the time. 

7. city or country?

i realize more and more that i haven't really spent time in a major city. i don't think i would like it a whole lot, but i'm willing to try it. i'm probably to cheap to stay very long in a city. i think i would have to get out to the country and breathe once in a while, too. i'm too anxious for that sort of busy lifestyle.

8. would you bungee jump?

yes, but i think it would have to be pretty spontaneous. the more time i have to think about something the more nervous i get.

9. favorite sport to watch?

i only really watch mma with the husband. i actually enjoy it sometimes.

10. favorite school teacher and why?

i had so many great teachers, but i really loved my second grade teacher, mrs. parmley. she was so creative and fun. she had all sorts of amazing incentives to get kids to like learning. also, i think nearly every one of my high school teachers really made an impact on my life.

11. what do you want to do when you retire?

i would really like to travel, but the husband isn't so excited about that idea. he says he will be stuck in an rv with me while i ask him super annoying hypothetical questions, which is true. mostly i would just like to be available to have the means and health to visit and spend time with all the people i love.

happy tuesday, folks.

Sunday, April 8

the true meaning of easter.

on monday we were teaching ellie about easter with some little cutouts.

she was listening pretty intently, so i figured we were doing a good job.
then she put the little Jesus behind the tomb, 
made his head come out of the hole and said
"peek-a-boo, Jesus!"

close enough? 
we'll keep trying. 

happy easter, everyone.

be excited to see pictures of the girls in matching sailor dresses!!!!

Friday, April 6


pictures from babyland general (months ago)!! my parents sent me these pictures and i'm just getting around to posting them. blame the holidays. and the newborn. and every other usual excuse.

getting psyched on the ride there.

ellie and i, not knowing that our life is about to change forever. 

when my parents came we took the girls to visit the place where cabbage patch kids are born, 
babyland general hospital in cleveland, ga. it's only a short drive away. one of these rainy days in the summer i think i will take ellie back. i didn't realize it was so interactive. she loved it. and we pretty much had the place to ourselves.

another thing i didn't realize was how the original cabbage patch kids could be so unsettling and cute at the same time.

here are our adventures visiting the hospital and mother cabbage, the place where all the cabbage patch kids are born. we even witnessed a live birth!

it kind of looks like there was a massacre in the patch... nope, it was just ellie.

a lot of these pictures made me laugh. it's like i got an outside view on what it is like to watch ellie in action. sometimes i forget how funny she can be when i'm around her all the time.

what a bizarre, fun, ridiculous place! i loved sharing it with my girls.
if you're ever in cleveland, georgia... go!

Tuesday, April 3

the weekend + yesterday.

we've been going like crazy.

friday evening we had a fun birthday party for one of her little friends. she was so excited to tell him happy birthday. ellie had a ball on the jump houses and ate a dinner of cupcakes and "goldenfish."

saturday we got up extra early to drive to atlanta for the color run 5k. we dropped ellie with grammie and pop-pop for the day and headed into town. everything was perfect and the run was so much fun. i would do it again in a second.



we met up with ellie and the grandparents at mcdonalds where she was playing her little heart out, then we headed back to their place to clean up and relax before dinner.

it's the perfect time of year in georgia. it's warm but not melting-hot (yet) and the bugs aren't too bad. we had a picnic on the deck and ate our fill of great-granddaddy's amazing burgers and ellie fell in love with watermelon all over again. it was heaven.

sunday wasn't too exciting. besides attempting to listen to conference over singing and whining and playing, we took a walk around the "neighborhood" (ellie's new favorite word). oh, and skyped with the utah family. and dyed easter eggs. and took a nap in the sunshine. so kinda exciting.

then talk about manic monday.
yesterday, daddy stayed home with us and we had another jam-packed day.

first stop: the doctor's office for both girls - 2 year and 4 month.
ellie was especially upset about it. even though i had been trying to prepare her for weeks and we told her we were going to the checkup, she somehow got the idea that we were all going to the swimming pool instead. on the way there, she would say "we goin swimmin!" and i would say, "no, we're going to see the doctor." then she would say "mommy goin swimmin, poppy goin swimmin, daddy goin swimmin, ellie goin swimmin!" poor girl. totally in denial.
aside from ellie's fear of the doctor, both girls are super healthy and well.
ellie's short for her age (25th percentile), but average weight so she's a little round.
poppy weighed in at 16 lbs! she's gaining about a pound a month. she's in the 75th percentile for height and weight.

after the doctor, we went to the park to see the wildlife zoo. it was beautiful weather. ellie was most excited to see the turkeys and she kept gobbling back at them. we walked around the duck pond, too, and she ran nearly the whole way around it. poppy relaxed in the stroller and enjoyed the sun.

after that we had some lunch, bought and planted some plants (that i am really going to try not to kill) and went for another walk around ellie's beloved "neighborhood." we had a little easter lesson to top it off and then tried to get to bed early and ended up actually getting to sleep after midnight (thanks shots, for a restless baby).

whew! how's that for a good start of april post?

more pictures are on the way.