the 5 months post I’m just now getting around to

I didn’t get a post of Eva made on her 5 months birthday like I have every other month.  Now that she’s nearly 6 months I better get with it!

toe grabbing

The truth is, Eva’s 5 month birthday was a really emotional day.  A good friend of mine had a baby the weekend before who died just 2 hours after he was born.  They knew it would be that way.  He was diagnosed with trisomy 13 when she was about 20 weeks pregnant, but still it was so sad and so hard.

toe grabbing

constant wiggling

more toe grabbing

Eva’s babyhood has been so emotional for me.  I am so keenly aware of how miraculous her little life is, how lucky I am to have her safe, whole, so perfect.  I know so many people who struggle to get pregnant, who desperately want children but just can’t seem to make it happen.  The week after Eva was born my sister in-law nearly died of preeclampsia, her baby was delivered at 32 weeks, and that tiny baby’s little lung collapsed on her second day of life.  There I was with a perfect baby, memories of a peaceful home birth, and tears running down my face constantly thinking of my sweet sister in-law who could barely even touch her fragile little one.  (My  niece is fine now, growing and perfect, but she had a scary start.)

Here I am with 6 perfect children, 6 easy pregnancies, 6 uncomplicated births.  I am so blessed.  I have had 2 miscarriages that were intensely sad, but a year to the day after each I was nursing a sweet little boy and as I look back I realize those trials were so small in comparison to what so many go through.

toe grabbing

I hope I can live up to this miraculous privilege that is mine.

I have 6 perfect babies.

birthday tree

A few weeks ago I picked up a copy of Better Homes and Gardens May issue.  On page 78 there was a photo of a child’s playroom with a crazy beautiful tree toy on a shelf.  It looked like a tree that needed to be in our family room, but I couldn’t for the life of me figure out what it was.  So, I took a photo of the magazine page, posted it to flickr, and asked the internet to help me.

It worked!  It’s called a Totem Tree by Kids On Roof.  I decided to treat myself to one for my birthday and it came today, a day late, but that’s fun because it stretched the celebrating out a bit.

totem tree

The boys and I put it together tonight while Barry took pictures of us with the new lens he got me for my camera.

putting it together

going up

birdhouse on top

lots of leaves

Now, doesn’t it look like it should have been there all along?


birthday at Tahoe

On Wednesday I turned 31.  That sounds so grown up.  I am now in my 30s.  Geesh.  When I was younger I had this idea that I would accomplish amazing things by the time I was 30.  You know, like have art hung in galleries throughout the world, a book or two published, things like that.  I guess what I have done– being married for nearly 11 years, given birth to 5 kids, lived all over the country– are pretty good things, especially that being married part and having all those little humans.  Those books and art gallery exhibitions will just have to wait their turn.

To celebrate my birthday I got to do my favorite thing–  walk around outside in an amazingly beautiful place with my very favorite person in the whole universe.

birthday at Tahoe

Barry spent part of the week being a judge at the International Science and Engineering Fair in Reno, Nevada.  We found a babysitter for the four biggest kids so that Hunter and I could tag along.  I had my first casino experience (our hotel was a casino, so we got to walk through it over and over) –not too impressive, just really disorienting and stinky.  Other than that, the trip was so relaxing.  I got to do things like nap and shop for jeans that actually fit, and best of all drive up the mountain to see Lake Tahoe, the lake of amazing turquoise water.


birthday at Tahoe

litle head

I didn’t think to bring Hunter a hat.  He did have a burp rag on his head most of the time, just not for pictures.  You know, having just one baby is a piece of cake.  He was so good.

can't get over the colors

so beautiful

I have a friend who grew up here by Lake Tahoe.  Her dad just decided that he needed to raise his family in a cool place, so he packed up his wife and 8 kids, moved to a little town by the lake, and started a business doing accounting.  They had a tiny house for such a large family, but there were those mountains and that water– way better than a big house. While we were driving around we tried to figure out how we could get that plan to work out for us.  When we got home Barry checked  Um, well, I think $3 million- $16 million is a little out of our price range.  A girl can dream though, right?

 Happy birthday to me!

(All of these photos were shot by Barry, the non-babywearer on this trip.)

the branches were strung with a million diamonds

diamonds at sunset

tiny prisms


This little place I live is so amazing. Trees and light and birds. I will really miss it when we move this summer. Still don’t know where we’re moving to, so don’t ask. I’m super impatient about this whole thing and have absolutely no control. I could start deep cleaning my house or something productive in preparation. I will one of these days. Probably on a Saturday when there is a grown-up here to keep me on task.


Anyway, I got tagged for a “write 7 random things about you” meme, so here goes:


1. I’m messy and generally disorganized. I try to be on top of things and do fairly well in spurts. It is a very good thing I married the man I did because I have gotten pretty good at maintaining some routines when it comes to the structure of our mornings and evenings, but as for maintaining self discipline with things that I don’t like to do (read dusting, cleaning finger prints off walls, dog snot off of windows, or even sometimes pee off of the bathroom floor) I’m not so good. This has been a problem as long as I can remember. Ask my mom.


2. I worked in a wood shop in college. We took trees that would be taken to the dump and turned them into lumber, then into jewelry boxes. I got to use lots of power tools and learned to identify all sorts of woods. It was an awesome job– much better than the two weeks of phone calls I made for AT&T. I couldn’t handle that for long.


3. Um, I have to sleep hugging something soft, but inanimate. I slept with a big white stuffed reindeer until I had two kids, then decided that I should try to be a grown-up, so I gave up the reindeer. I absolutely must have my hugging pillow,though, or my back is all tweeked in the morning.


4 . I’m irrationally afraid of making phone calls. To anyone. If someone can explain this to me please do.


5. I really, really want a tree house some day.


6. Hmm… my favorite color is green. Brown and blue are right up there. Well, it has to be the right blue– a light turquoisish bluish grayish. The color of the walls in my kitchen, dining, family room area– that blue.


7. I watched American Idol tonight. People seem to be surprised when I tell them I watch American Idol. I guess I don’t seem like the American Idol type? I’m really not much of the TV watching type, but watch American Idol I do. I’m rooting to the two Mormons. Oh, and the kid with the dread locks.

Now, if you have a blog and feel so inclined to write 7 things about yourself on it consider yourself tagged.