Friday, May 27, 2011

Knitting Frenzy

Because there are four women at church who are about to give birth (all of them are expecting little girls!), I have been knitting up a storm of pink gifts.

First up was a double shower, where I contributed bibs and booties to some combined gift baskets:

Next up was my friend Kristin's shower. At first she said there would be absolutely no pink in her baby's room, so I was going to try and match whatever colors she chose for her curtains, but then she changed her mind completely and decided it was pale pink all the way. This left me one month to knit the world's most everlasting blanket.

I don't know if it was because my needles were on the smaller side, if the yarn was super snaggy and hard to work with, or just that I made the blanket WAY too wide and had to keep lengthening it so it wouldn't look stupid, but this baby took me the entire four weeks. Kristin's son is Topher's best buddy, though, so I wanted her little girl to have something special. I wanted her to sleep in a cloud of softness. I almost threw a party the day I cast off and could say that I was done. All joking aside, though, it was a labor of love.

But because the best gifts come in groups, I threw in a matching hat (once again, the stuffed cat is the only thing in my house small enough to model my newborn hats.)

Last night was the last shower, and I wanted to try something new. So I made a hat and experimented with it a bit. Once I decided that I liked it, I made some booties to match.

All of these little girls are going to AMAZING families who are anxiously awaiting them. I hope everything goes well for everyone and I cant wait to see all the little cuties!


Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Five Weeks of Waterbabies

For the last five Tuesdays, TJ has taken Topher to the YMCA for his Waterbabies class. It was daddy/son time and I would just hear about it afterwards. Since Topher has never had a positive experience with a large body of water, we wanted to try and get him ready for some summer fun at the pool. The first two weeks weren't pretty. Topher cried the whole time. We missed week three due to a cold, but then last week it went really well. Meaning he did not cry as much. So this week, for his last class, I snuck in to the stands to watch my little water baby. As soon as Topher got in the water, he started crying and I heard someone in the stands say, "That's the one that cries." Great. Anyway, as soon as the the shock of the cold water wore off, Topher relaxed considerably and really didn't cry much at all. I literally had to crouch behind a woman to hide from Topher (I explained that I wasn't trying to be creepy but that I was hiding from my son and she was very accommodating). I then had to hold my camera out to the side of her head, and zoom all the way in order to get these shots. Look what I captured here: a SMILE!!!!
I'm so proud of Topher for being brave, even when the water wasn't warm. I'm also extremely glad that TJ has infinite patience with him. Let the summer begin!
Or at least bring on the heated pools.

Friday, May 20, 2011


Dear Topher, Yesterday was a good day. It was cloudy but not too cold, windy but not to distraction. As soon as you woke up from your nap you were asking to go outside, so outside we went. For awhile you insisted on pushing the stroller. Then, after about a block, you decided you would rather ride. We walked to a spot where we could look out over the busy road. As the cars drove by, I tried to name their colors before they were gone again. You laughed. Every time you spotted a truck, you would point and say, "truck!" as though it was the first one you had ever laid eyes on. You ran down the hill as fast as you could without tripping and into my arms where you would get scooped up and twirled around. You wanted to do it again and again. Every time your body weight would slam into me I felt whole. We walked down to the little pond. There were no ducks, but we had several sword-fights with long blades of grass. You beat me every time. I taught you how to say, "En guarde!" Nothing really happened yesterday. Not really. But I couldn't stop staring at you, at your little rows of sharp white teeth whenever you smiled. I stared at that freckle right at the corner of your eye. I stared at you whenever you would zoom off with your bouncy little run. I stared at your ears and how they angle out just so. I stared at your profile. I couldn't help it. I still can't believe you're mine.
I'm so glad I get to stay home with you and have all these "uneventful" days. Turns out that they are the ones that make up the majority of our lives.
I love everything about you.
Love, mommy

Sesame Street Groove

There was a short segment on Sesame Street the other day that made Topher laugh and laugh. He kept asking me to rewind it and watch it again (thank goodness for DVR!!) After a few times, he started dancing to it.


Sunday, May 15, 2011

Roadtrip Weekend

We had the opportunity this past weekend to take a roadtrip to Nauvoo, IL. Along the way, we saw signs in Eldon, IA directing us to the American Gothic house. You know, the real house used as the background of this famous painting:
We decided on a little detour. It was hilarious. The volunteer working at the museum could not have been more enthusiastic about the painting. Or about dressing us up and posing us just so right in front of the house. I'm so glad we stopped.
Then we got a silly picture to debunk the myth that Iowans are crabby, miserable farmers.
We arrived at Nauvoo and checked into our--wait for it--log cabin. I was SO excited about staying in an authentic log home. These log homes have been salvaged from the prairies, restored, and have been modernized with air, TVs, kitchenettes, and full bathrooms. But the charm of the cabin remains. It was the perfect setting for our Nauvoo weekend. Here it is, the cutest little cabin you could ever imagine:
A view of the inside. Along the other wall was a full bathroom, a futon, and the TV and fridge/microwave. Black and white photos of the original owners hung above our bed.
And the very VERY best part was our room key. It was an authentic skeleton key! I couldn't get over it.
That night we went to the Nauvoo temple. We tried to have this cowboy with an English accent (don't ask!) take our picture, but it ended up all blurry. This was the best we came away with.
The next morning we visited the Carthage jail. The entire weekend was gray and drizzly, but for the most part it was dry whenever we were walking around.
Back in Nauvoo, we visited the brickyard, the blacksmith, the print shop, and the Browning home/gun shop.
Then we took a few more pictures of the temple, grabbed lunch at the Nauvoo Mill & Bakery, and came home.
Topher stayed with Grandma & Grandpa, had a ton of fun, and talked their ears off. As soon as we brought him and Sassy back home from the farm, Squash could not have been happier to see us...or her furry best friend. I love how her face literally disappears into the folds of Sassy's jowls.
It's amazing how easy it is to travel when it's just the two of us, and how much fun we can jam into two days. It was perfect. I loved every minute of it. And I can't wait for our next mini-getaway. :)

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Mother's Day

This post is not about my own Mother's Day, but rather about my mother. (Although I did have a lovely Mother's Day.) I was lucky enough to have my mom in town for three days last week and it was great. I haven't seen her since Christmas, so it was fun to watch her discover all the things that Topher can do now. We had so much fun going out to stores, to the park, to eat, to the library...wherever our fancies took us. Even bull riding. And it goes without saying that Topher LOVES his Mar-Mar. Actually he must have gotten a little confused at some point because he simply calls her "Marble." That works too. So every time he'd wake up he would say, "Where's Marble?" and then I would have to hear an endless repetition of, "Marble be back soon?" My mom is great in a crowd. She can make herself stand out and be heard no matter how many people are gathered. However, I have to say that this is the way I love her best, just one-on-one, all to myself (and my son, I don't mind sharing her with him). It was a great week. We hated to see her go.

Thank you for everything mom, and most of all for just making so much time for us. Thank you for making Topher laugh so hard. Thank you for filling up our gas tank (if that's not pure love in this economy, I don't know what is!) Thank you for letting Sassy slobber all over you, Squash sit all over you, and Sheila slither all over you. We all love you so much. Happy belated Mother's Day! You are the BEST. Love, us --KC

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Where's Topher?

Topher loves to hide and then say, "Where's Topher?" to prompt me to play hide-and-seek with him. --kc