Friday, December 14, 2012


Here are some photos from our Advent so far.

We finally bought the same advent wreath that I had when I was a kid. It has images on it about the salvation history of Jesus. I love it, and the kids do too.

We went to a party and took photos by their tree ( white lights) we set up our own tree (the colored lights)

The kids have been playing with the manger toys, and we've lit a few fires.

We will be staying in MD for Christmas. We are looking forward to Clark's Christmas concert at school next week. He's been practicing a lot. He really loves music and singing!

We made cookies.

It is a sad news day, so we stayed busy all afternoon making cookies. It's was our first year making Christmas cookies. We made red and green sugar cookies, and peanut butter cookies, and pnb cookies with Rolos in them. They are all very yummy.

The kids weren't convinced that these drop cookies couldn't be formed, so they experimented with cookie cutters learning finally that .... No.... It can't be done.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Once there was a tree

And that tree got sick and had to be removed. 

The tree and the men and their equipment. 1 cherry picker, 1 giant hook truck, and a tree eater, and a big truck for the tree crumbs. 

He's smoking AND cutting the tree with a gasoline powered chainsaw.
He liked the audience! 
and here's the big tree trunk grabber truck!

you can see the dark, diseased tree part on the right. 

After the men left, I cleaned up the stump. 
and we honored it. 
by sitting on it and making it feel useful 

and then the stump grinder truck came. 
and the tree was gone. 

Thursday, June 7, 2012

The best alarm clock

I heard Clark's foot steps on the stairs - softly creeping up to the top. The baby gate swung open as he passed through it and closed with a soft thunk. He waited now, choosing his prey. Sometimes it was us, sometimes it was Iris. (our rooms are opposite each others on the landing). Then I heard the barnyard door of our room softly creek open and tiny little feet pad across the room. They stopped at my side of the bed, but I was still mostly asleep and non-responsive. The feet abandoned me and padded around the foot of the bed to Tom's side. I heard some whispering and then the creak of the bed springs as a body was added.  A minute later I felt his fuzzy head nestling in the crook of my arm.

A few minutes later, the bed creaked again as Tom got up. I heard the shower run - then the soft moan of the baby waking.  Doors opening, doors closing. Tom's feet coming over to the bed.  Clark scoots over to let Iris in.  My eyes are still closed while Iris nurses, all of us still mostly asleep.  Clark's tender voice says, "our sweet baby, she's a little sweetie, just like a little baby sweetie." I can feel him patting her head.  Then his weight added to ours and I heard his kisses above her ear.  Iris says, "ma ma" and we roll over so she can nurse on the other side.

My eyes open for a second and I say, "good morning, Clark".  Now Iris is on his far side, so he climbs on my shoulder so he can look at her.  She only nurses for a second more as Clark hands her a sippy cup of milk - his from last night.  She takes the cup of milk and drinks heartily.  Clark starts blowing zerberts on my arm.  Iris rolls up until she is sitting.  She wants to play too. Clark blows on my shoulder. Iris blows on my belly.  I open my eyes and smile. 

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Clark tells his first joke

I was talking about how we needed to dress warm because it was chilly outside.
He said, "Its Chilli outside, there must be beans in it"

I laughed and laughed, it was so unexpected.
Good for him.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

We're cute

Here's some cute photos we've taken in the past month

argh, she's a pirate

Iris talking on her "car phone"

Clark acting like Captain America!

Iris looking super cute in her "Wendy" nightgown, chasing Clark around the island in the kitchen.

Ft. Lauderdale, Everglades, Keys

 So here's a few more photos from our trip to Florida.
This is Iris on the balcony one morning.  The sun rises right over the ocean, right into the hotel room. Tom got up early with Iris one morning to watch it.
We also saw some beautiful moon rises.

 Our last day in Ft. Lauderdale, we went to the International Swimming Hall of Fame.  This is me and kids by the swimming statue (Mark Spitz?) and in front of their pool. That day was a big pre-Olympic diving competition with some of the world's best divers.  Tom really enjoyed the HoF. I'm really glad we fit it in.
Clark (the Original Gumbo) on the Gumbo Limbo Trail in the Everglades NP
 We also go to visit the Everglades National Park. We went to the visitors center and went on a guided hike on the Anhinga Trail. We didn't see an Anhinga (a bird) but we saw lots of fish and a tiny alligator.  Then we did a quick and shady and mosquitoey trail - Gumbo Limbo Trail. Iris loved it and got 18 mosquito bites.
 Then we drove down HWY 1 on the chain of little Islands known as the Florida Keys. We stopped to refresh ourselves at  Harry Harris Park in Tavernier. It had this great pool. The water came from the ocean and fish were swimming around, but it was portioned off as a swimming area. It was perfect for Clark and Iris
Sunset on Key West and a Ship

We visited Key West and went to the Southernmost Point, as well as Mile 0. Key West is like a hot, beachy New Orleans. 

On the way back north on our way out of the Keys and Florida, we stopped at John Pennecamp Coral Reef State Park in Key Largo. Most of the park is underwater and awesome for snorkeling and scuba diving. We didn't do either, but we did do some wading with our babies.  They have glass bottom boat tours, which we vow to do next time we come through!

Florida Keys

We went on our annual Florida trip for the last time earlier this May. We spent a week in Lauderdale By the Sea at the Sea Lord Hotel which is completely awesome.  Then we drove to the Everglades and then down to the Florida Keys. My Aunt Carla lives on Summerland Key. We were just there a weekend, and here's some photos from it.  We are so glad we took the time to go down there, and would love to do it again (maybe faaaar into the future)
Iris and Clark being cuties in the Ft. Lauderdale Airport
with my cousin Kelly

Southernmost Point of the USA

And again

Kids enjoying some ice cream at a shop in Key West
Kids REALLY enjoying that Ice Cream!

Tom, V and Clark Kayaking off of Cudjoe Key

in my brother's narrative: WEIRDO: "HA HA HA !....LOOK AT THESE TOO DELICIOUS LOOKING CHILDREN!" Children: "We promise to eat our green beans. Please SAVE US!"   WEIRDO: "They're slow and easy to catch around this stream. I GOT TWO!"