Wednesday, November 28, 2012

It's 10 AM and my mom and Evelyn are probably at the library.  I know they're having fun and I am super jealous.  I loved taking Evelyn to the library.  I got to be a mom among moms and look involved and browse books.  It would take up our entire morning and then we'd go to the restaurant and she'd see her friends there.  Then I'd take her exhausted self home.  It was always a fun morning.

I miss it already.

Monday, November 26, 2012

The past 5 days

I've gone to baby time at the library for the last time in a while.

Made fruit salad.

Bought yarn.  Twice.

Finished a sweater.

Started a cowl.

Realized I'll need to unravel the cowl.

Same with a hat.

Celebrated Thanksgiving with my family.

Slept late.

Played at my parents' house and helped with Christmas decorating while Laine repeatedly told Dad and Robert, "Y'all just don't see my vision."

Put a bunch of baby things in storage in my old bedroom.

Tried and failed to get Evelyn to call the hogs.  She won't.

Found a molar in my baby's mouth.

Went to the grocery store.

Saw the new James Bond movie.

Mopped part of the apartment.

Dressed up my big girl a bunch of times.

Had breakfast at the restaurant with most of my family.

Heard Evelyn say "cow", "moon", and maybe even "cheers!" and then refuse to say them again.

Watched 2 discs of Season 3 of Fringe.  Felt the urge to wash a bunch of blankets and/or nurse because that's what I was doing the last time I watched that show.

Took 65 pictures with my camera.  And some more with Sara's camera.

Finished everything up by getting Evelyn bathed and ready for bed as she had an epic meltdown.

The next 5 days?  Well see how it goes.

Thursday, November 22, 2012


  • for a beautiful little girl
  • for sleeping through the night this year
  • for a bigger bed
  • for a smart husband
  • for family that loves my daughter
  • for flexibility with my job during this time of my life
  • for good food
  • for things that are funny
  • for yarn
  • for chances to talk about yarn more often
  • for finding a knitting group
  • for a balcony on the apartment
  • for a dishwasher
  • for the Internet
  • for the library
  • for friends
  • for cameras
  • for Mtn. Dew
  • for words like "hi" and "go"
  • for detachable high chair trays that can be sprayed off
  • for pajama pants
  • for books
  • for things that are interesting
  • for birthdays
  • for all good things

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

In the mornings

This is when I love her the most.

She points to the pacifiers she's thrown in the floor.  She points to her name on the wall and I spell out the letters.  She points to her closet or to the vacuum cleaner in the corner.  She pulls her hair away from her face.  When I move to pick her up, she sometimes crouches back down in the bed and giggles.  She points to animals on her little pillow and I tell her what kinds of animals they are.  She holds stuffed animals out to me and I hug them and then she hugs them.  Eventually I pull her out of bed and give her a big hug and she makes little grunting hug noises.  I kiss her face and neck and she giggles.

She is beautiful and happy and fuzzy-haired in the mornings.

This is when I love her the most.

Monday, November 19, 2012

I want Evelyn to know

  1. Never make fun of someone who speaks broken English.  That person knows at least two languages (I read that in Reader's Digest once).
  2. If you know where you learned something, go ahead and say that you read it from an article or heard it from an old farmer.  There's no sense in trying to act like you thought up all the thoughts yourself.
  3. But don't be afraid to be smart. Learning things is awesome, and dumb is entertaining for only so long.
  4. Sometimes, you're going to need help.  Ask for it.
  5. Sometimes, other people will need your help.  Give it.
  6. Learn to do something with your hands.  Knitting, plumbing, building ships in a bottle--I don't care.  I just want you to know the joy of being able to physically create something, whether it's a hat, a repaired kitchen sink, or a ship in a bottle.  Your dad would think you're so cool if you could make a ship in a bottle.
  7. Your dad loves you.  So do I.
  8. Ignore people who talk about how far back their family lines go like it's something to be proud of.  Everyone's family lines go all the way back, but some of them  have better documentation than others.  Be grateful you were born to people who love you and want to teach you things.
  9. Buying nice things won't make you a fancier person.  But if you can afford something nice, buy it, use it, and appreciate it.
  10. Leave a good tip.

Friday, November 16, 2012

This is your life and there is stuff in it

When Jessi and I were driving through mountains the other weekend, we did a lot of talking.  This is hardly a big announcement because we normally do a lot of talking when we're together, but since it was just the two of us with hours of time ahead we got to do a lot of talking about a lot of topics we don't normally throw out when we're eating and entertaining Evelyn.

We've both got a lot of changes going on right now, and the upheaval feels good.  As a result, this theme kept cropping up:

Via Holstee.

She's recently moved closer to her family to help her parents with their health issues.  It's difficult, but she feels more at peace because she's not away and worrying about them.  I've been trying new things and it intimidates me way more than I'm comfortable talking about, but I like trusting my abilities and learning new skills.  We like getting invested in things and caring about politics and trying new stuff and watching things constantly change.  We also like figuring out how we'd run everyone else's lives, but hey.

I spent a lot of the weekend thinking about that Calvin and Hobbes strip where they say that tomorrow they'll seize the day--and then throttle it.  I love when that feeling hits.  It doesn't happen very often, but I try to take advantage of it when it does.

The last few months have been awesome.  I'm past the teenage fear and cynicism, the college student fear and exhaustion and cynicism, and--most recently--the soul-crushing exhaustion and paranoia that comes with caring for a little baby.  Evelyn's a lot more chilled out now, and I'm feeling comfortable in my work, and things are just good.  I'm rested and calm enough to where I can step back and say "Look at this great family I have that can help me!  They don't try to take her away if I don't clean the toilet often enough.  This apartment really is pretty comfortable if I don't have magazines around me!  Life is so awesome now that I don't have to wash so many burp rags and bottles!  Let's make some stuff and put the pictures online!"

This is what I'm like when I'm happy and this is what it's like in my head and notebooks.  (Yes, notebooks. Plural.)

Stuff like this inspires me.

And so does this.

And so does this:

And this:

And at least a hundred different things.

I really love finding out what makes people happy.  Cody, quiet man that he is, comes home from cooking all day to cook even more or look up recipes online or read a cookbook all the way through. He reads books and blogs and talks to people so he can be a better dad.  It's awesome to watch people talk about the extra things they make space for in their lives.  Even if they're not exclaiming "I love knitting/cooking/taking on extra reading/my side job!", you can just tell when people have some extra happiness and satisfaction from doing what they love even if they don't get to do it all the time.

I've wanted to write about how I feel for a while, but it's hard to describe.  I'm happy and I want to do stuff. I want you to do stuff.  If you're not happy, you should really do some stuff.  Seriously, this is pretty much how I want to approach life: with an unflagging desire to do stuff.

It's not always how I really do approach life, but it's nice to have goals.  It's how I want Evelyn to see me, so I may as well get a start on faking it in front of her.

I'm about to go back to work full-time.  I've been home with Evelyn on weekdays, in some capacity, since August 2011.  We need the money, and I know Evelyn's in excellent hands, but I'm already counting down the days until I can go back to part-time.  It's a long ways off.  It's going to be much more difficult for me to work on side projects and put on a happy face when I'll be working every day, and most likely staying late.  But it kind of doesn't matter.  Actually, it doesn't matter at all.  This is my life and, more importantly, this is our family's life.  I don't get to take breaks.  For some strange reason, I'm glad about that.  I'm thrilled for the time we've had together.  We'll be just fine in the coming months.  They'll be full of stuff to do.

I'm ready.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Evelyn June is 20 months old

The other day, my mom was telling me about some cute photo she'd seen of a baby resting on a dog's belly.  Both parties were just chilling, and looking adorable.  "Remember when we thought we'd do that with Evelyn?" I laughed.  "Yeah, and then she was born." Dad said. 

There has been no chilling for the past 20 months. 

Even though Evelyn sleeps like a human now, she is still a deranged little creature who will run in circles until she falls down.  Her new favorite word is "GO!" and she uses it for everything.  Her new favorite thing to do is to try to walk her feet up the wall of the bathtub while holding herself up with her hands.  She looks like she's doing those push-ups that are modified to be really hard.

She's strong, she's fast, and she's eating better.  She still has no new teeth, but they'll get here eventually (sooner would be better than later, though.  She doesn't feel that awesome).  She'll sit still for longer periods of time when we read books. Her current favorites, as of last night, are: The Rainbow Fish, I Am a Good Citizen, The Cow Loves Cookies, an issue of Highlights for babies, and Ox-Cart Man.

She spent the night with her grandparents 3 times this month.  She outgrew a pair of shoes.  She was a chicken for Halloween.  I made her a Jayne hat, and she refuses to wear it.  She makes a sound that means "yes."  She uses the "ffffff" sound when we talk about birds (they fly), and flowers, and something else.  Maybe "fast."  She loves sidewalk chalk.  She likes crayons and mostly seems to understand that we only draw on paper with crayons and pens.  Mostly.  She also yells "woo!" any time she hears the word "Razorback."

She cries pretty easily when she's upset these days.  I don't know if she's very sleepy because of the seasonal changes, or if it's her gums bothering her.  She's fairly patient with my confusion. 

She's growing.  She's got to weigh at least 20 pounds now, and I've noticed some of her pants getting a little shorter.  Her hair is almost long enough for pigtails again.  She waves at everyone and whispers 'hi' to them.  She has a beautiful smile, and preferences about clothing, and she gives kisses and hugs (sometimes).

She's the best.  And she's a year and three-quarters old. 

Happy birthday, Evelyn!