Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Evelyn June thinks she's big

I love when people ask me about Evelyn.  I'm just a really proud mom.  Even when she's hitting the not-so-pleasant milestones like saying 'no' to everything, or getting defiant about boundaries, or wanting to watch the same cartoon DVD 4 times in a row, I can feel confident that she's doing it on time.  But mostly I just tell people, "She's so big!"

I think she's a big girl.  She used to be tiny enough to sleep in my lap and curl around my belly.  Now she sits in my lap and her head blocks my view.

People laugh at me a little.  Some of them even look a little concerned about my delusions.  "That's not big," they say sadly.


I've been telling her "You're so big and strong!" before I even knew if she was a boy or a girl.  I knew any child of Cody's might be a bit too large for some people's approval, and I wanted 'it' to know I was going to celebrate being big and strong.  I also knew any child of mine could be small, and endure all the 'lighthearted' teasing and dismissals that come with it.  I knew I wanted that little fetus to be big and strong.  I grew bigger every day and every day I'd tell my belly "Way to go!  You're so big and strong!"  Then she was born and she was a pretty regular size, but still very strong.  We saw no need to stop telling her to be big and strong.

She lifts things.  She wants to move furniture.  She carries heavy books and toys that are supposed to stay on the floor.  She climbs and runs and spins.  You'd think the shine would wear off at some point, but I'm completely blown away at her amazing health and strong little body.  It's so fantastic and strong and whole.  I didn't know a small person could do so much.  I didn't know a small person would want to try to literally climb walls or chase animals for long distances.

Someday, we might have to let Evelyn know that she's not really flying when we swing her through the air. Someday we may even have to break it to her that she probably can't be a superhero because we're not cut out to be the parents of a crime fighter.

I never want to stop telling her that she's big and strong.  I pray (with a tone of defeat already in my voice) that she'll never ask me to stop saying that, or that she won't want to be 'big' because that's not what women want.  I don't want her to ever feel like she should downplay her strength.  I want her to love her body for being exactly what it is--a miraculous creation that grew and grew and changed and adapted and helped her do all the things she wanted to do.   It's beautiful.  She's beautiful.  She's mighty.

 She's big and strong.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Who could ask for anything more?

I've got a ton of bulky weight yarn.

I have a small bit of greenery and life in the kitchen windowsill.

I've got all this goodness.

I've had gingerbread every day this week.

I've had dinner with friends and laughed loudly while knitting.  I got some Christmas money and bought us enough laundry detergent to last until June.  I have blank notebooks and half-finished knitting projects.  I've got a list forever long of books to look for, parties to plan, gifts to make, and events to plan.  I have lovely family and friends, a talented and kind husband who's awesome at all kinds of things, and this little adventurer.

Even on the rough days when I think "It's never going to get any better than this," another part of me thinks "Good.  That'll be just fine."  This month has been weird, but this week has been pretty positive.  I've got a life that would be just fine if things were never happier or easier than they are right now (even though I do hope/think it will improve).  I couldn't really ask for anything else.

Monday, January 21, 2013

January 20

I saw today's date on my phone this evening and realized it was January 20.

Cody and I have been together for 9 years.

I don't always realize what it means when it rolls around, but I did today and I was pretty excited that we've been together for nearly a decade.  We've moved 4(ish) times, bought 3 cars, went through 4 pairs of glasses, had a baby, and still haven't managed to take a vacation together.

Cody still loves comics and conspiracy theories and reading about cases of feral children.  I still listen to music he hates and drink too much Mtn. Dew.  We still love frozen pizza and books and talking about pretty much nothing.  All of the new stuff we like tends to revolve around Evelyn.  It's fun to talk about her, try to figure out why she hides my toothbrush in the places she does, or spend time with her.  She loves frozen pizza as much as we do, reads books, and cracks herself up with her own jokes.  The things we did as a couple of friends buying each other ice cream (TRUE LOVE!) are the things we still love to do as a family of three.

I get really excited about all the time we have just the two of us, though.  I came home late tonight and almost immediately found  a leak under the kitchen sink that I had to fix.  Cody was really nice and changed out the heads on the screwdriver while I mopped up some water.  Then I made him laugh with my mean thought process, and he confessed to closing his Internet browser completely when I walked in because he was embarrassed by the conspiracy theory video he was watching but then he told me about it anyway. 

He will never be able to convince me that a Snickers is not a meal or that jazz is not absolutely nerve-wracking.  I will never stop making borderline hate speech-level critiques of his religious background. 

I'll be the first to say that he's smart and talented.  Whenever I try something new, he's never surprised and always seems confident that I'm capable of being great.  It's been amazing to see that subdued nineteen-year-old with seemingly inaccessible interests turn into a cook who is so proud and happy to be a dad.  None of it surprises me, but it takes my breath away regardless.  This life we've made together is precious and surreal.  I love it.  It's a gift, and I'm grateful.

9 years.  It's good stuff.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

February 2

The restaurant is closing on February 2.

Cody's mom has a new job, and that's awesome.  We're excited for her.

Cody's grandma has decided things apparently won't run without her, and so she's closing the restaurant and selling it.

Obviously we're less excited about that.

The restaurant has potential buyers.  Whether any of them want to keep on the original staff is anyone's guess.

Cody is looking for work.  He's good at manual labor, shipping/ordering, and cooking.  He's looking for jobs in all of those areas, and if you see anything else that looks like him you should call him.

I have a lot to say about this phase we're in, but very little of it is positive or polite.  I'm freaking out if I think about it too much, so I'm just really focusing on my work right now and starting lots of knitting projects.

Cody is a little more upbeat about it now, and I think we're almost starting to look forward to whatever happens next.  Maybe.

We've done this before, but never with a baby.  In fact, we had said baby because it seemed like we were both in a place (professionally and financially) to have a baby because his job at the restaurant seemed so safe and stable.

A better person would throw out the Scriptures about how we can't add time to our life by worrying, and maybe the one about not planning for tomorrow because of God's planning.  With hyperlinks and all.

I'm just going to get another cup of coffee.

I'm not writing this to tell the story of how there was a way I thought things were, and then there was conflict, and then there was resolution because of some moment of peace from out of nowhere when I realized the one set of footprints was where Jesus carried us.

I didn't have a picture of hands doing something beautiful, so here's Evelyn laughing because she loves licking baby food off the inside of her baby food lids.

I'm writing this because I haven't written much of anything ever since we knew this was a possibility.  It's something we've been half-expecting in a breath-holding, cringing sort of way.  The Last Day gets closer and closer and it seems a little more normal and a little less terrifying.

Cody's going to be able to purchase his own health insurance.  I'm working full-time.  I'm off on Monday, which gives him a full day to email applications or go into businesses without worrying about naps or getting home by a certain time.  I'm able to talk--or at least post--about this without all the crying and swearing or the past couple of weeks, and Cody doesn't know it yet, but he's going to send out 10 more applications in the next few days.

We're working and planning and trying to cling to the things that give us peace of mind--a silly toddler, lists, encouraging friends and family, frantic prayers, more lists, silly toddler dance parties, more cups of coffee, meal plans, and .... lists.

There's no resolution.  And maybe that's not so terrible.

Thanks for listening.  It feels good to tell you.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Sweet Potatoes

March 2012

May 2012

December 2012

January 2013

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Evelyn June is wait, what?

I've been telling people she's 22 months old, but that can't be right.  Because that means she's nearly 23 months and then she'll be two in March. So the math is...



Evelyn June is 22 months old.

She has 10 or so teeth, a vocabulary of about 15 or 20 words, and abuses markers and crayons on non-sanctioned surfaces.  She's outgrowing her Size 3 shoes, and can lift a twelve-pack of Mtn. Dew.

She likes to color, and she can push your legs to where she wants them while shoving a book at you and saying "lap".  Or "sit."  Because of some annunciation issues, it doesn't sound like she's saying "sit," though.  It does, however, sound adorable when she exclaims "Yesssssh!"

Her dancing has gotten weirder.  That wasn't a complaint.

I skipped the 21 months post.  It was on a sad day, and I didn't feel like crowing about my child's myriad accomplishments and cuteness.  We were also both struggling to adjust to the new schedule, and not having an easy time of it.  Now that Christmas is over and her nose has cleared up a bit, things are a bit better.

She's growing and changing every day.  I say this every time, but it's true.  She's eating like a four-year-old.  Last night, she even had greens.  Cody was beyond thrilled.

She loves Sesame Street and Sesame Street characters.  She has a pretty great sense of humor about pretending to eat things she can't eat, or using utensils incorrectly--she shakes her head and says "Nyewwww" laughingly.  I love it, even when she cracks herself up way too much while pretending to clean my glasses with her toothbrush.

She's silly and short-tempered and can sit through longer books with bigger words when we read now.  She sits in a forward-facing car seat.  She weighs around 20 pounds and makes little kiss noises when she wants to kiss you.  I love her kisses.  And her hugs.  And her reindeer pajamas.

Evelyn is a lot of things.  Most of them are fun.  All of those things are spectacular.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Book list for 2012!

Here it is!  I love my book lists.  Even if this past year wasn't very impressive in terms of reading, it was enjoyable.  I read through the entire Wallander series with the exception of one collection of stories, but that's because they haven't been translated to English.  I read The Hunger Games trilogy, and all but one of the Game of Thrones books.

Yes, I know the fifth book is out now.  No, I don't know if I'm up for it yet.

I'm not sure if I'll go through the Lemony Snicket series, but maybe I will.

I can't believe I only read one volume of Adrienne Rich's poetry this year.  I haven't read through all of her poetry in the library, but I think I'm getting close.  She died this year (I think it was on Cody's birthday), and I re-read Diving Into the Wreck because it's the only collection of hers that I own.  I bought it on sale at Hastings or Books-A-Million when I was 16 or so, and the whole thing was so 1970s Feminist Lesbian Poet Talking About Age and Science and Society.  I loved it.  I'm not the biggest poetry person, but I liked her and I still do.  I thought about writing a post about her, but I didn't know what else to say other than what I just typed there.

Orlando is still my favorite Virginia Woolf book.

Concerning Dissent and Civil Disobedience didn't give me as much to think about as I thought it would, and One Thousand Gifts gave me more to think about than I thought it would.

Craft Activism inspired me.

Everything else was like junk food for my soul and I stayed up way too late on way too many nights tearing through it.  It was great.

Adams, Douglas. Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency.
--. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.
--. The Restaurant at the End of the Universe.
Collins, Suzanne. Catching Fire.
--. The Hunger Games.
--. Mockingjay.
Fortas, Abe. Concerning Dissent and Civil Disobedience.
Mankell, Henning. Before the Frost.*
--. Dogs of Riga.*
--. Faceless Killers.*
--. The Fifth Woman.*
--. Firewall.*
--. The Man Who Smiled.*
--. The Pyramid: The First Wallander Cases.*
--. Sidetracked.*
--. The Troubled Man.*
--. The White Lioness.
Martin, George R. R. A Clash of Kings.
--. A Feast for Crows.
--. A Game of Thrones.
--. A Storm of Swords.
Rich, Adrienne. Diving into the Wreck: Poems 1971-1972.
Snicket, Lemony. The Reptile Room: A Series of Unfortunate Events Book #2.*
--. A Series of Unfortunate Events: The Bad Beginning.*
Stewart, Trenton Lee. The Mysterious Benedict Society.*
Tapper, Joan and Gale Zucker. Craft Activism: People, Ideas, and Projects from the New Community of Handmade and How You Can Join In.
Voskamp, Anne. One Thousand Gifts.
Woolf, Virginia. Orlando.

Part of me wants to vow to read more 'serious' books.  Books about the subtext and contextual clues about societal ills in our modern adaptations of folklore, or about early childhood brain development.  Maybe something about purposeful living and overly earnest DIY lifehacks.  But there is that fifth Game of Thrones book out, and I had so much fun last year.  I'd like to re-read The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova yet again, and maybe Possession by A.S. Byatt (I think it's the only book of hers I've read that has a happy ending) because I enjoy them so  much.  So I'll try to read a few more books with a focus on learning this year, but overall, I just want to enjoy the reading.

I can't wait.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Just an update.

Hey there.

It feels like it's been a long week.  I think it has been a long week.

Work is busy.  Life is busy.

Evelyn has been incredibly happy lately, and that makes us incredibly happy.  She's been playing with her Christmas toys and books, putting shoes on her feet, and running around with a phone (real or toy) stuck to her head and starting off her jabbering conversations with "Hawullll".  She has a lot of vocal inflection.

I read the last 2 Hunger Games books (that I bought for Cody's Christmas present) and I still don't know if I'm ready to talk about it.

I'm reorganizing my craft corner.

I'm trying to reorganize a lot of things so that life will be a little easier in the next few months.

I realize everything I say and do makes it sound like I'm dropping hints about pregnancy.

There is no pregnancy here.

I have been nostalgic, though.  My work is getting pretty intense and we're going through our old routines and practices and I can't help but get all wistful about how I was preparing for a busy few months and for a new little person in my great big belly.  Sometimes I miss all of Evelyn's crazy movements.

Then I drink twice as much caffeine as I did when I was pregnant, and Evelyn gives me a kiss, and I don't miss it.

Evelyn gives kisses now.  It's probably the sweetest thing you've ever seen.

She spent the night with my parents last night.  They bought her a suitcase for her sleepover adventures and she really loves it.

Now that gift knitting is out of the way, I have an embarrassing amount of yarn and patterns I want to get to.

Cody's made a lot of bread lately.

Our asthma is unpleasant, but Evelyn's runny nose is gone.

I'm looking forward to writing my 2012 book list.

I guess that's it.