Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Semi-Shamrocks and an Ah Ha.

I just had to share these. Don't they look like little semi-Shamrocks?

They're actually just my other garden seedlings coming up, but I rejoice over them even more than I would an actual four leaf clover (which I HAVE found before, by the way).

Another reason I absolutely had to share these: I've been playing more and more with my camera and had an especially fun "ah HA" moment this afternoon while I was talking to my sister-in-law Anne about some pictures I wasn't terribly happy with. As we were on the phone I grabbed my 20D, made the changes we were talking of, and ran over to my little bright green, semi-shamrock-sort-of-look-alike little baby veggies and had them pose for a few frames. Ah HA! Eureka. It worked. :) And I had to share.

St. Patrick's Day: Eatin' Good

To celebrate the bit o' Irish that winds its way happily through my family's and my own lineage, I spent the past couple days making an Irish feast, if not truly authentic, still full of fun and festivity.

Irish Champ - this is seriously good stuff.

Add a good helping of Beef and Irish Stout stew and you're in business.

That's good lookin' dinner.

And for dessert, Pioneer Woman's Apple Dumplings. These are deadly delicious.

My family heartily enjoyed our Irish-American meal! Leftovers ensure the coming days will continue to see us happily rejoicing in this fun time of year.

Saturday, March 7, 2009


Siennalee loves her friends. Especially friends who have moveable heads. Take Pink Giraffe, for example. They have many heart to hearts and share many snacks.
I secretly believe this is because Sienna knows Pink Giraffe is listening to her.

He always pays attention to whatever is important to her.

He's also quite affectionate.

He certainly seems to enjoy her wet smooches.

And Pink Giraffe is by nature quite a curious pink creature.

He hangs out and waits until she's done with whatever business is important at the moment.

He's confident she'll tell him all about her newest discoveries in due time. (Note how he's attentively listening to her explain whatever it is that she and Daddy are reading on the 'puter.)

Here they are preparing for an adventure.

He's telling her something in this shot. (Probably that he prefers to ride in front - why should Orange One Baby always get to ride in the front?) There are two ways you can tell that Pink Giraffe is talking to Siennalee: 1st, her mouth is open and her eyebrows are up, indicating a high pitched voice is needed for whatever animal is talking at the moment, and 2nd, Pink Giraffe's head is moving (that's the big giveaway).

And they're off!
(Note the other friends just lying around. Are they sleeping? Are they playing dead? If only they talked to the adults. We'd love to know.)

The cart has stopped for a quick bite. Here you meet Orange One Baby. She seems to be the regular favorite and always gets to ride in the front of the cart. Orange One Baby is a castoff of Isabella's from long ago when Sienna was first noticing baby dolls. We think Orange One Baby got her name from when Siennalee was first learning to recognize colors and orange was her first favorite color to pick out. Orange One Baby has an orange-ish head, so... there you go.

This is Moo. Siennalee has had him since she was itty bitty. He was a baby shower gift from Alicia. You can't see his face here, because he's looking at Siennalee, but rest assured he is very, very cute. (We're not positive he's a boy, but that seems to be the pronoun regularly used for him, so until somebody gets up the nerve to do a more thorough investigation, Moo is a "he.") Moo's currently the bedtime baby that regularly accompanies Siennalee to bedtimes. (I secretly believe he keeps her awake at times. But that's a pink boy cow for you.)

This camera and I are still getting to know each other. I also have a variety of factors warring against me in this photo sequence: Low light, a toddler who's faster than the camera lens - you get my drift.
But blur or no blur, you can see Moo is quite beloved.

And here's MY favorite little friend to squeeze and smooch.


This is my husband Jason. We celebrate being married 6 years this year. He's currently the swing shift manager at our local window and door manufacturer and often works 10 hour days, sometimes even longer. He's also a Lieutenant Commander in the US Navy Reserves and spends one weekend a month, two weeks a year, and countless evening hours devoting himself to them.
He's my baby's daddy, my greatest love, and one of the best men I've ever known.

He works hard and plays even harder. He loves football and hopes to assistant coach one day. He is thoughtful, courageous, and painfully sincere. Loves the outdoors, all sports, eating my latest culinary endeavors, playing with our daughter, and best of all, he loves ME.

I really do think I'm the luckiest girl in the world.

Monday, March 2, 2009


Our world is quite a magical place these days. Below are just a few favorite phrases and glimpses into our precious moments.

"I'm okay! I'm okay!" When she's climbing or playing and starts to feel a little insecure, or dramatic.

"Where aaaare me?" When she's hiding.

"Oooo, it 'pooky down dere... it 'cared me." This is fairly new. We were walking down the stairs and she looked over and could see underneath the desk through the stair railing - it was dark under there and, apparently, spooky.

"He's a good buddy." This is often used to talk about Racer, and occasionally her Moo (stuffed cow).

"What dat noise?" Usually when she hears a strange vehicle or noise she can't place.

"What you got in your mowf?" She has a very good nose and can tell when one has sneaked a treat she hasn't gotten a bite of.

"Pop it!!" She loves when I "pop" my gum - her little mouth opens wide in delight and she squeals, "Pop it again!"

"Hi, I'm Moo!" All her stuffed animals and babies have names and voices of their own (which she supplies, of course). Moo is a stuffed cow and has a very deep voice (which sounds, oddly enough, like a gravelly two year old girlie voice). Most of her other babies have very high voices and are barely intelligible. (Jason and I are required to say "Good morning" and give kisses to whichever babies might be in Siennalee's crib each morning.)

Elaborate dramas and adventures unfold each day in my living room. Siennalee is a very active little girl, but will spend quite a bit of her time playing independently with her Little People (not from the TLC reality show) and then will move to caring for her babies and stuffed animals. They go on walks and hit Costco quite often.

She also loves to "read." She will sit in our laps for countless books and then will take several and go off on her own to "read."

Potty training so far has been a bust. I have high hopes, but continue to move slowly in my encouragement towards the constant use of the "big girl potty." She's just not ready.

She also loves babies. She will watch them motionlessly but does not try to touch yet. She'll talk about them later, "He a wittle baby. He cry."

Her pronouns are starting to be employed more and more. It's about a 50/50 chance if she gets them right. I'm surprised how much she'll use the pronoun "he" or "him" since we don't have too many "he's" in our world right now, except Daddy and Uncles.

Siennalee is very empathetic. She's often distressed when her cousins are upset or crying (even when she is the perpetrator) and will offer a hug and kiss when she sees tears. A couple months back, she would pause in her play and come close to me to consider my face for a moment before asking, worriedly, "You crying?" I got lots of toddler hugs and pats. She knew what I needed.

It's such a marvelous blessing to watch her grow and begin to unfold as a little person.