Wishy-Washy Weather!

It seems like just the other day I was writing a post about the beautiful, warm weather here in Nebraska, and how Georgia and I were able to get outside and soak every last ounce of it up. Wait... that was the other day! But a few days later, you'd never know it.

snow collage

SNOW... and quite a bit of it for late March. Somewhere around five inches fell overnight. So much for those thoughts about pulling out the shorts and T-shirts. Instead, Georgia and I stayed inside today, bundled up in our jammies.

Since we didn't go out in the snow, we brought the snow inside to us.

snow indoors collage

It doesn't take a refresher of that middle school science class to know in the warmth, snow will turn to water. Georgia liked that science lesson... a lot.

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My kitchen floor - not so much.

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Notice the water is NOT going back into the tub.

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I would say let's hope it starts getting warmer quickly, but as I write this, the flakes are falling outside my window... again! So much for spring weather in Spring.


Slice of Life - I Heart Faces

My daughter and I do so much throughout our day, each moment a little slice of life. So many moments to chose from for this week's I Heart Faces theme, but I think it's the simple slices that speak to me most.

At 17 months old, one of my daughter's new loves is coloring. She colors in her books, on her face, on the walls, on the appliances, on the couch, on the carpet - yeah parents, you know the drill. But I love to watch her when she gets lost in her next masterpiece, which was just what she was doing in this slice of our day.

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Go check out some other slices of life this week at I Heart Faces:


New Adventures... Right in Our Own Backyard!

I know every parent of a child thinks it. Heck, they must think it 1,000 times at least before their kid turns two.

It must be amazing to see the world through the eyes of a child.

As adults before the diapers and bottles and crying and smiles and tiny socks and everything else hits our lives, it's easy to forget the wonderment of childhood. We certainly don't remember that long ago. But add a child into the mix and wow - watching them watch the world - it's nothing short of amazing.

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For Georgia and I, it just took some warmer weather (finally) and a trip to our backyard. Everything - EVERYTHING - got an oh or an ah, that cute pointing finger and the face full of wonder that turns to me as if to say, "oh my gosh mom, did you see that?" She had to touch every new texture - the wood on the deck, the stone wall, the blades of dead grass, the blades of living grass, the dirt, the mud, the tree, the fence, and on and on. I was waiting for her to go for some dog poop. Phew, not on this outing. And when birds flew overhead, well my goodness, that just rocked her little world.

I want that! I want to remember, no, I want to do it - find the magic in every little thing. When did I lose that? Ah, but watching my little lovely brings it back a little, even if just through the smile that forms on my face watching her live life in awe of the simplest things.

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Georgia also loves that in our backyard, you can find two hairy beasts. Right now after a long and cold winter, two very dirty and stinky hairy beasts. And she has figured out that it is fun to steal the tennis ball from the little "ball addict."

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I think they were in a stare down over who would end up with the ball. Georgia opted for the dogs' water bowl instead - it's fascinating. Really, it entertained her for more than a half hour.

bowl collage

Don't think she gave up on the ball though. Why have just one when two is pure wonder...

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... and torture for Bailey.

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And by the way, I'm still looking for my lost wonderment. Let me know if you find it.


A Few of My Favorite Things.

We all know how easy it is to get caught up in the every day realities of life. We're all going at top speed, trying to accomplish an hour's worth of stuff in 10 minutes. It's easy to get pulled along by our hurried flow, in fact, it's almost imperative at times just to get everything we think needs to be done... done. We're always trying to do it all, NOW!!

I am the multi-tasker queen. Trust me, I have the scars, burns and bruises to prove it. Hey, I never said I was the perfect queen. But, and I get this so very honestly from my mother, I am ALWAYS trying to do many,many things at once. Just like right now, as I write this post, I also have my photo editing software (Lightroom) open, my Facebook page open, a photography message board open and my hotmail account open. I'm switching back and forth between them all, handling, learning and checking several things at once. Sometimes I try to make myself stop, slow down, do one thing at a time - but it. is. so. hard.

My husband asks me to slow it down because sometimes my overload reaches Georgia. Like when I left the baby gate open after letting the dogs outside and then starting cleaning the kitchen, only to realize the gate was open when Georgia brought me something from downstairs. Yep, she went up and down the stairs without me hovering over her. Good thing we've been practicing that one! I tell my husband it's a centuries-old complaint from women, that we have to do so many things; otherwise, they'll never get done. He argues it's conditioning - we women only multi-task the hell out of everything because our mothers did. OK, looking at my earlier comment, he might be onto something.

Soooo... I am at least making myself slow down enough to take notice of all the little things I love right now about Georgia. She's growing so fast that I know if I miss them now, and don't stop to commit them to memory, they'll be gone soon. And that, my friends, would be unacceptable. There are too many things to list them all, but some of the things I'm loving right now about my little lovely:

- when I lift her out of her crib in the morning and carry her to the living room, she reaches behind my head and plays with my hair.
- when she realizes she is the center of attention (which is often), she really tries to ham it up.
- her little fingernails always seem to have dirt or something under them these days.
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- she is NOT a fan of socks or shoes. Ah, I know who she gets that from! ::smile::
- when I sit cross-legged on the floor, she thinks my crossed legs are the perfect reading chair.
- she is a very dainty eater... usually.
- her hair has finally gotten long enough that I'm wondering if I need to pull out the scissors.
- she LOVES to read.
- she likes to cover her stuffed animals with a blanket and tuck them in. She's also starting to offer them food and water.
- she finally tries to blow her nose. Oh so cute!
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- she learns and says new words every day.
- she loves seeing pictures of herself and pointing at them. "door-da" (um, that's Georgia for those of you who don't speak Georgia)
- her big toenails grow funny. (yes, I think it's cute)
- the way she's all cuddly when she is ready for a nap or just woke up from one.
- her voice, the sound is magic in my life.
- her singing, mostly just the ABC's right now.
- her wacky hair dos when she wakes up
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- her evil laugh. (even when it really IS evil, but usually it's just to get a laugh)
- she says "uh-oh" around 100 times a day.
- she is ticklish.
- she says "dank-do" almost every time you give her something. ::melt::
- she looks so much like her daddy.
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So there's a few of them, OK, a few more than a few. :) But I love everything about my little girl, and the list is growing every, single day. I can't think of better reasons to take a breath and slow things down.


Run Screaming... Hide!!!

It's the stuff of nightmares, maybe the true monster under the bed. It brings the same reaction Freddy Kruger would if he came sneering into the room. It's terrifying, horrific, alarming, dreadful, shocking, horrendous, spine-chilling and every other synonym my thesaurus can come up with.

This is the face of hell in our house.

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Um, yeah, it's my daughter's new baby doll. Scary, huh? She seemed fine with it in the store.

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But we got that green-eyed baby home and wham! - pure hate and fear. She wouldn't touch the thing, and if I got it near her, she'd pull away like I was holding a cobra with its hood flared.

This was the closest she would get after a few hours - a look from a distance.

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Then the "if I don't see it, it isn't there" approach.

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It's funny, I thought the ritual of buying the "first" baby doll would be a sweet memory shared between Georgia and I, a mommy/daughter bonding moment. Well, if that includes scaring the hell out of my daughter - memory achieved!


Cheap Entertainment... Funny Hats.

When we've done all the coloring our fingers can handle, when we've stacked and knocked down and stacked and knocked down all the blocks we have, when we've read board book after board book after board book, when we've exhausted peek-a-boo, stuffed animals, singing, fridge magnets, chase, tummy tickles and other forms of entertainment, there is still a trick I keep up my sleeve - the tupperware drawer!

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The drawer usually stays locked, but Georgia quickly becomes giddy when I push down on the child lock and open the drawer all the way. It's such a simple thing that brings such joy to my little lovely.

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Today I had to wear a funny hat too.

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Georgia would only allow me to photograph her while wearing these balanced on my head.

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When It's Cool to Have a Mohawk!!

So my husband would argue it's cool to have a mohawk at any age, and I'm sure he's right, but I'm a little more, um, traditional. (some might say uptight, conservative, or some other undeserved title) But there is one time when I think mohawks rock... when they're shampoo mohawks!!!

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From her smile, Georgia agrees. But the kid also thinks bath time is a great time for a swig from her sippy cup. (how this is any different from mommy taking a glass of wine to the bath with her during pre-baby days... well, I'm just not going to get into that!)

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Or better yet, some bath water. God only knows what's lurking in there.

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But that bath water does make for cute little semi-curls.

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And lots of fun!

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Can You Tell Me How to Get to... My Old Sesame Street!

Whoa! Sesame Street today is not the Sesame Street I remember from 20-something years ago. When did they start rapping the number of the day? And where did all these characters come from, I remember about seven or eight. Now there seems to be some new, neon character every time I look. And when did Gordon get so old? Is that even the same Gordon? And he had a cell phone! Where have I been that I never noticed all these changes? (Oh yeah, childless and living in a purely adult word - hello childhood again!)

OK, maybe I'm really aging myself with this tirade of questions and observations, but the Sesame Street Georgia will grow up watching is much different from the Sesame Street her momma grew up with long, long ago. So if you haven't guessed, Georgia and I watched Sesame Street for the first time today. She's usually napping when it's on, but as she proceeds to drop (and fight dropping, yeah for me!) her morning nap, she was awake for the first 15 minutes of it.

Even the open to the show is much different than I remember, all flashy and jumpy and stuff. I just wanted to close my eyes, plug my ears and rock back and forth while softly and slowly singing "can you tell me how to get, how to get to Sesame Street?". I was able to control myself thankfully, otherwise Georgia would have proof her mother is crazy. The number of the day today - one - which was rapped in a song (can you call it a song?) by someone I have never seen before. Obviously, I need to catch up on my hip-hop artists and probably any other entertainer who is considered "cool" and "popular."

At least I knew who Elmo was, even though he is a post-dinosaur age addition. Hey, I've even met the overly-hyper, blazing-red character in person:


And today, Elmo was the one bouncing character Georgia recognized on the TV. She even says "Elmo." It does sound a little more like "Eh-mo," but that's OK. So in honor of our breakthrough Sesame day (or my break down), "Eh-mo" got to go along on our afternoon walk.

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After days, weeks, months, eons it seems of snow, ice, freezing temperatures, beyond freezing temperatures, wind chills that make you wonder why ANYONE would live here - after all of that - today reached like 70 degrees. I love you spring! And that made a trip to the playground a necessity.

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Look mom, more kids!

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She would not release her death-grip on the sippy cup.

So back to that educational TV show. (yeah, I'm not letting it go yet) Did Georgia learn anything today from Sesame Street? Probably not, but she has years ahead of her for that. However, I was quickly and thoroughly schooled in the fact that I am old, and that things have changed A LOT since I was a kid. Even that sweet street that kids are still asking directions to all these years later. Really, don't we have Google maps for that these days?


So What Do We Do These Days?

Ten hours. TEN HOURS!!! That's how much time I must fill each day, or rather fill for a 16 month old little girl. And she is a girl who is quickly growing, changing, learning and asserting her independence on an amazing level (i.e. fighting my decisions and choices about half the day). Now I know this is nothing new for thousands of moms across the world, they stay at home with their children every day. But for someone who was thrown kicking and screaming (at least a little) into the stay at home realm, well filing 10 hours is a little bit of a shock. OK, that 10 hours is the elephant and I'm the mouse kind of shock.

I have never (ever) thought the job of a stay at home mom was easy. My mom stayed home with us for many years, and I saw how much she worked. And it's not just the work, it's the mental and emotional drain that some days can be - that I am now learning first hand. It's not easy to entertain a little one for hours on end and make sure a good portion of that entertainment is educational. Then mix in the meals and the diaper changes and the house cleaning that I do when I can - phew! There's a reason I've never yearned to be a stay at home mom.

Of course, it must be said that although our days have their challenges, I REALLY, TRULY do love being with my little girl so much. I've already seen the way she treats me change (for the better) since I've been staying home. She's more cuddly with me, more gentle most of the times and more likely to cling to me (which probably isn't the best thing). It's cute and very endearing. And I know I will treasure these days for the rest of my life because we have mommy/daughter day every day right now.

So back to what we do. It's evolving daily, and I'm constantly on the look out for things the two of us can do. But here's a recent day. Now you can all take a look and see if I'm passing or failing. I know it's not a test, but it kind of feels like one sometimes, doesn't it? Or maybe I'm alone on that one?

We watched the garbage truck as it drove down the street, stopping at each house. Georgia hears it coming (along with kids a mile away), and starts saying "kah, kah." That is car is Georgia-speak.

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So we watched the garbage truck, still in our pj's.

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For our afternoon activity, I bravely introduced this for the first time:

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Thank you Aunt Jenna.

Georgia dabbled in a little painting, but decided crayons were still easier to handle. We'll have to try this one again.

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The clean up from the finger painting turned out to be her favorite thing of the day. No surprise... it involved water after all.

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So Georgia spent a while in the kitchen sink and screamed and cried when I finally thought there truly were little prunes attached to her feet and I removed her from the sink. Mean, mean mommy.

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So add in all the things in between, like the all-important eating, and poof, 10 hours is gone. But the best thing is, mixed in with all the happenings of the day are timeless memories being made that will never, ever end. Maybe this stay at home thing isn't so scary after all. :)


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